Friday, February 21, 2014

CUMULATIVE RHYMES ON CHILDREN'S POTTERY



A cumulative nursery rhyme or poem is when one rhyme builds on another.  It is an excellent teaching tool for children because memory and brain development are aided by numerous verses hooked together by rhymes and repetition.  The House That Jack Built and Who Killed Cock Robin are examples of cumulative rhymes, and both are found on pottery made for the 19th century child.  The House That Jack Built is featured on a series of mugs, each around 2.75 inches high, made by the Ynysmeudwy Pottery (1845-1877) in Wales.  (The bolded text indicates that it is featured on a mug).

This is the house that Jack built
This is the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built. 
This is the rat,
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.

The History Of The House That Jack Built/ Notice that one side of the mug says The History, the center says Of The House plus a stanza of the rhyme, and the other side says That Jack Built.



This is the cat,
That killed the rat,
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.

This is the dog,
That worried the cat,
That killed the rat,
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.

This is the cow with the crumpled horn,
That tossed the dog,
That worried the cat,
That killed the rat,
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.




This is the maiden all forlorn,
That milked the cow with the crumpled horn,
That tossed the dog,
That worried the cat,
That killed the rat,
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.

This is the man all tattered and torn,
That kissed the maiden all forlorn,
That milked the cow with the crumpled horn,
That tossed the dog,
That worried the cat,
That killed the rat,
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.



This is the priest all shaven and shorn,
That married the man all tattered and torn,
That kissed the maiden all forlorn,
That milked the cow with the crumpled horn,
That tossed the dog,
That worried the cat,
That killed the rat,
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.

This is the cock that crowed in the morn,
That waked the priest all shaven and shorn,
That married the man all tattered and torn,
That kissed the maiden all forlorn,
That milked the cow with the crumpled horn,
That tossed the dog,
That worried the cat,
That killed the rat,
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.



This is the farmer sowing his corn,
That kept the cock that crowed in the morn,
That waked the priest all shaven and shorn,
That married the man all tattered and torn,
That kissed the maiden all forlorn,
That milked the cow with the crumpled horn,
That tossed the dog,
That worried the cat,
That killed the rat,
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.

Who Killed Cock Robin is found on a series of 3 inch high mugs which were possibly made by the Ynysmeudwy Pottery. The mugs are titled The Death of Cock Robin

Who killed Cock Robin?
I, said the Sparrow,
with my bow and arrow,
I killed Cock Robin.
The Death Of Cock Robin mug, 3 inches by 2.25 inches/ Notice that the first and last verses are found here

The first and last verses of The Death Of Cock Robin

Poor Cock Robin!/ if the photos look familiar, see my post titled  Robin Redbreast

Who saw him die?
I, said the Fly,
with my little eye,
I saw him die.
Who caught his blood?
I, said the Fish,
with my little dish,
I caught his blood.
Who saw him die and Who caught his blood/ I only had a photo of the center of this mug

Who'll make the shroud?
I, said the Beetle,
with my thread and needle,
I'll make the shroud.
Who'll dig his grave?
I, said the Owl,
with my pick and shovel,
I'll dig his grave.
Who'll be the parson?
I, said the Rook,
with my little book,
I'll be the parson.
Who'll be the clerk?
I, said the Lark,
if it's not in the dark,
I'll be the clerk.
Who'll carry the link?
Who'll carry him to the grave is also written Who'll carry the coffin/ Indeed, the Kite is carrying the coffin in the illustration! The mug is 3 inches by 2.75 inches.

Who'll carry him to the grave and Who will carry the link are both on this mug

The Linnet is carrying a link or torch

I, said the Linnet,
I'll fetch it in a minute,
I'll carry the link.
Who'll be chief mourner?
I, said the Dove,
I mourn for my love,
I'll be chief mourner.
Who'll carry the coffin?
I, said the Kite,
if it's not through the night,
I'll carry the coffin.
Who'll bear the pall?
We, said the Wren,
both the cock and the hen,
We'll bear the pall.
Who'll sing a psalm?
I, said the Thrush,
as she sat on a bush,
I'll sing a psalm.
Who'll toll the bell?
I said the Bull,
because I can pull,
I'll toll the bell.
All the birds of the air
fell a-sighing and a-sobbing,
when they heard the bell toll
for poor Cock Robin.

There must be other examples of cumulative rhymes printed on children's mugs and plates.  Perhaps you have seen something bearing images of There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly!  There are also cumulative tales such as The Gingerbread Man and The Gigantic Turnip, but so far I haven't found them on 19th century children's china.









4 comments:

  1. I love them! And what a great idea for a collection.

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  2. I would love to own them all! Unfortunately, most are not mine. All are found on the pattern database of the Transferware Collectors Club (entered by me).

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  3. I'll keep an eye out for these. I had forgotten about the collective poems from my childhood. I love them!

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