Mother Goose rhyme time


In an old Boston graveyard are several tombstones bearing the last name 'Goose.' Some say that one is that of Mother Goose. Scholars doubt this, however. Mother Goose probably was not a real person at all, they say, as some of the rhymes have been dated as far back as the 700s. They are likely the anonymous work of early European court jesters, nobles, and common folk. Their rhymes and repetition gave rise to the most famous jingles in the English-speaking world. How many of these do you recall?

1. Where is the little shepherd who should be blowing his horn?

2. Pease porridge, hot and cold, was in the pot for how long?

3. What season was it when the Queen of Hearts made tarts?

4. On what kind of morning do you go round the mulberry (or bramble) bush?

5. What two animals live with the crooked man in his little crooked house?

6. How many bags of wool did the black sheep have?

7. At what time of day did the mouse run down the clock?

8. After they had found their mittens, what tasty reward did the three little kittens receive?

9. What must Little Tom Tucker do to get his supper?

10. Goosey, goosey, gander wandered upstairs, downstairs, and where else?


(1) Under a haystack, fast asleep; (2) nine days; (3) summer; (4) a cold and frosty morning; (5) a crooked cat and a crooked mouse; (6) three; (7) 1 o'clock; (8) pie;

(9) sing; (10) in my lady's chamber.

SOURCES: 'The Annotated Mother Goose' (Clarkson N. Potter, 1962; World Book Encyclopedia.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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