1980s Nursery Rhymes

How 17th Century to 1980s Nursery Rhymes Are Still Dominating The Education Market?

Tell me how many products or services have you been using since childhood till now? If yes, how often do you enjoy and appreciate applying those in your and your family’s lives?

The only education and entertainment medium we’ve been immersed with since childhood is ‘Nursery Rhymes’. Do you remember the ‘Twinkle Twinkle’ or ‘Baa, Baa, Black Ship?’ How about ‘Johnny Johnny’ and ‘Itsy Bitsy Spider’? Are or would your kids be listening to those as well? Of course yes. This is how 17th century to 1980s nursery rhymes are still dominating the education market and will always do.

Now the question is how are these nursery rhymes addictive and embraced all across the world?

Let’s look into it.


History Of 17th Cen. – 1980s Nursery Rhymes

You’ll be shocked to know the majority of popular rhymes we and the new generation love are composed and recorded in the 17th and 18th centuries. The 19th century did add up some more addictive rhymes until the 80s.

The very first version of rhymes was published in Tommy Thumb’s Pretty Song Book. The publication took place in the year 1744 in London. It had a blossom of beautiful rhymes that we still sing every now and then.

A number of factors took place prior to publishing some of the rhymes. These are:

  • Some rhymes were written and given the melody at the same time
  • In some cases, the rhymes in the word format were published, but the melody came after a period of time
  • Some had wording in English, but picked up the same French melody for several rhymes (for instance, ‘Ah! vous diraj je maman’ is a french melody assigned for Baa baa, Twinkle and ABCD songs.

Here’s the list of some English Nursery Rhymes with the date of recorded composition and country of origin.

English Nursery Rhymes – Year, Country, Written By & Melody

English RhymesYear Country Of OriginWritten ByMelody
Baa, Baa, Black Sheep1744EnglandA. H. RosewigFrench: Ah! vous dirai je, maman (1761)
Ding Dong Bell1580EnglandJohn LantSeveral Melodist
Twinkle Twinkle1806FranceJane TaylorFrench: Ah! vous dirai je, maman (1761)
Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe1888The USABoltonSeveral Melodist & Origins In Different Forms
Hickory Dickory Dock1744LondonUnspecifiedUnspecified
If You’re Happy And You Know It1916The USASeveral VersionsUnspecified
Jack and Jill1765EnglandUnspecifiedCharles Burney (and several)
Humpty Dumpty1797EnglandModified By Several Samuel Arnold’s
Mary Had a Little Lamb1830The USASarah Josepha Hale Lowell Mason
11Itsy Bitsy Spider1910The USAUnspecifiedInfluenced by melody ‘Auf der Mauer, auf der Lauer’
Hot Cross Buns1797EnglandVarious WritersVarious
Johnny Johnny Yes Papa1989The USASeveral VariantsUnspecified
Pat a Cake1698EnglandUnspecifiedThomas D’Urfey
Ring a Rong o Roses1881EnglandSeveral VariantsUnspecified
The Wheels On The Bus1939The USAVerna HillsVerna Hills
Apple and Bananas1985Northern (America)VariousRaffi (1985)
London Bridge Is Falling Down1744EnglandSeveral VariantsJohn Playford (& various)
Pussy Cat1805BritainJames William Elliott (as for a later version)James William Elliott


How Composition & Tunes Of Rhymes Are

Sung In The Same Way In Every Country?

Back in the 80s, the internet was not so common. We can’t even imagine YouTube in those days.

Still, the rhyme sung in England was sung in India too. And the same sung in the USA and other major parts of the world.

So how did our teachers in the school come up with the same tuning and composition for every single rhyme? Even we never came across these rhyme videos on television channels. Probably, in most countries children did grow up just by listening, repeating, and singing these rhymes; the help of 2 senses. Never got a chance to watch how ‘Johnny’ looks while ‘open your mouth, ha, ha, ha!’.

We just made the visualization in our minds seeing the pictures.

With the research, I came to know that the higher distribution of these rhymes took place in the 18th century. Here, the medium utilized to scope up the kid’s education is through printed books.

One thing has always been in the record and that’s Tommy Thumb’s Pretty Song Book. The other was named Mother Goose’s Melody in 1780, in London, or call it Sonnets for the Cradle. They did flourish across Britain, USA, France, India, and major countries in the world.

Reach Of English Language In Non-English Speaking Countries

The scope of English rhymes reached India by the means of settled British generations in the county. The Britishers always wanted Indians to adopt the language of English natively.

In 1857, the establishment of English Colleges and Universities did take place in Calcutta (Kolkata), Bombay (Mumbai), and Madras (Chennai); The intention behind was straight and clear to grow the number of literary talents. The community of Britishers initiated the learnings for local Indians by embracing the education in English.

Similarly, multiple countries across the world did encourage the language which by means let them accept the English literature.

When the language became general in non-English speaking countries; the rise and demand for English education grew exponentially.

The connection with printed books in English came all the way from England.

Where in a country like India was still highly influenced by England’s literature. And so the educational magnets kept on adapting necessary educational materials in the form of prints.

And still, the schools and kindergartens in India still pass on the beautiful English learning culture in the form of rhymes. Now, the Indian syllabus, books, and education are completely based on their own developed system.

However, the primary schools and kids are still being thought nursery rhymes written and melodized in England.


Conclusion On 17th Cen. to 1980s Nursery Rhymes Dominating The Market

It’s For the past 4 centuries this bunch of rhymes has been in the mind and lips of generations. Whether you live long or so, these rhymes are going to exist gen after gen for sure. The dominance of 17th century to 1980s nursery rhymes is never-ending. And the tendency to scope it up has been putting in the effort by 2021’s rhyme animators.

Inheriting the rhyme culture, modern companies have been remaking the songs in the form of animations. You won’t believe these companies are literally making millions and millions just by entertaining the kids with the same set of golden rhymes.


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