Jul 12, 2008


Nursery Rhyme & History

History in a game for children in "Seesaw Margery Daw"
The seesaw is the oldest 'ride' for children , easily constructed from logs of different sizes. The words of "Seesaw Marjorie Daw" reflect children playing on a see-saw and singing this rhyme to accompany their game. There was no such person that we can identify who had the name Marjorie Daw and we therefore make the assumption that this was purely used to rhyme with the words 'seesaw' i.e "Seesaw Marjory Daw". The last three lines of "Seesaw Margery Daw" appear to reflect the use of child labour in work houses where those with nowhere else to live would be forced to work for a pittance (a penny a day) on piece work (because he can't work any faster). The words of "Seesaw Margery Daw" might be used by a spiteful child to taunt another implying his family were destined for the workhouse.

Seesaw Margery Daw poem

Seesaw Margery Daw
Johnny shall have a new master
He shall earn but a penny a day
Because he can't work any faster

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Thought maybe your readers with "little ones" might enjoy this clip.

It is a delightful new series set in 1890 San Francisco about a little cable car finding his way in a big cable car world.



Erik Nelson