Nursery Rhymes

Higgledy Piggledy

We have placed this Nursery Rhyme, Higgledy Piggledy, in our category 'Lost Lyrics of an Old Nursery Rhyme'. Many Nursery rhymes of the 16th and 17th centuries featured animals like the Cat, Frog, Toad, Pig, Goose, Raven, Goat, Wolf, Bat and Mouse. This was also the era when people were obsessed by Witches. These animals were associated with witches as their familiars and Mother Goose is often illustrated in the guise of a witch - is there a connection between the Origins of Nursery Rhymes like 'Higgledy Piggledy' and the Witch?

Higgledy Piggledy
Nursery Rhyme lyrics, origins and history

Higgledy Piggledy,
My black hen,
She lays eggs
For gentlemen;
Sometimes nine,
And sometimes ten,
Higgledy Piggledy,
My black hen!

Alternative Words to Higgledy Piggledy
 

Our grateful thanks go to Anne Rice for sending us the following email:
"How wonderful to find your site. I remember many nursery rhymes from my childhood and from my children's. Some have changed or we learned them in a slightly different form. One of yours reminded me of this one:

"Diddle, diddle dumpling
My fat hen.
She lays eggs for gentlemen.
Sometimes nine and
Sometimes ten.
Diddle, diddle dumpling
My fat hen."

Anne's email illustrates how the words to Nursery Rhymes change when handed down, by word of mouth, from one generation to the next. In this instance Anne's version is a combination of Higgledy Piggledy and Diddle Diddle Dumpling my son John.

Higgledy Piggledy
Nursery Rhyme lyrics, origins and history

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Note: A Rhymes lyrics and the perceived origins of some Nursery Rhymes vary according to location

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