Nursery Rhymes

The Bells of St. Peters

St Peter upon Cornhill stands on one of the most historic Christian sites in London.
 

It dates back to AD179 when it was the site of the Roman basilica built by Lucius, the first Christian ruler of Britain.
 

The name Cornhill derives from the Corn Market which was situated there and dated back to Roman times.
 

An earlier church is mentioned in records dating back to 1552 - its bell was faulty and Robert Mott, Master Founder of the Aldgate Foundry, was casting a new bell.
 

It was hung in the steeple but shortly after the church was destroyed in the Great Fire of London and subsequently rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren in 1687.
 

The reference to "Pancakes and Fritters" alludes to the wares which were sold to the local workers - the 'fast food' of old London!

The Bells of St. Peters

"Gay go up and gay go down
To Ring the Bells of London Town
"Oranges and Lemons" say the Bells of St. Clements

"Bullseyes and Targets" say the Bells of St. Margaret's

"Brickbats and Tiles" say the Bells of St. Giles

"Halfpence and Farthings" say the Bells of St. Martin's

"Pancakes and Fritters" say the Bells of St. Peter's

"Two Sticks and an Apple" say the Bells of Whitechapel

"Maids in white aprons" say the Bells at St. Katherine's

"Pokers and Tongs" say the Bells of St. John's

"Kettles and Pans" say the Bells of St. Anne's

"Old Father Baldpate" say the slow Bells of Aldgate

"You owe me Ten Shillings" say the Bells of St. Helen's

"When will you Pay me?" say the Bells of Old Bailey

"When I grow Rich" say the Bells of Shoreditch

"Pray when will that be?" say the Bells of Stepney

"I do not know" say the Great Bell of Bow
Gay go up and gay go down
To Ring the Bells of London Town

The Bells of St. Peters

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

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