The History of Nursery Ryhmes Essay

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The History of Nursery Ryhmes


When you think of nursery rhymes, do you think of innocent, silly games you played as a child? Think again. Most of the nursery rhymes that have become so popular with the children were never intended for them. Most began as folk songs or ballads sung in taverns. These songs (rhymes) all most always were written to make fun of religious leaders or to gossip about kings and queens (Brittanica pars. 1-5). Nursery rhymes are being studied the past few decades as a way to help children learn their alphabet and numbers. These rhymes have been proven affective in helping children's language skills improve. As I began to explore different nursery rhymes, I found that they opened up and disclosed some of
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There are eight categories of rhymes: Lullabies (Rock-a-bye Baby,) singing games (London Bridges,) nonsense (Hey Diddle Diddle), riddles (Humpty Dumpty), counting
(One, Two, Buckle my Shoe), tongue twisters (Peter Piper), verse stories (Queen of Hearts), and cumulative rhymes (House that Jack Built) (Pars. 5).
According to the World Book Encyclopedia the earliest known published collection of nursery rhymes was Tommy Thumb's SongBook in 1744, but in 1697 there was a book published in France called Tales of Mother Goose. This book contained eight fairytales including Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, and Sleeping Beauty. The most influential collection was Mother Goose's Melodies: or Sonnet's for the Cradle published in 1781 (616-617). More than two hundred years since the first book of rhymes was published, interest in children and fantasy is again running high. The nursery rhyme now represents the oral history of hundreds of years and how understanding the struggles of authority and occasional mischief by the common people made with moral conventions and emotional expectations as well as with language. Often anonymous, such rhymes share interesting characteristics both in content and in linguistic patterning across a huge range of cultures. The origins and purposes of many nursery rhymes have evolved over time, and many people do not realize what the…