Ring Around the Rosies

September 18, 2006 at 3:16 pm Leave a comment

An old favorite, Ring Around the Rosies is usually sung by a group of two or more children holding hands in a circle.  As they sing, they all dance or skip around the circle until reaching the last line, when everyone falls down.  Usually amid lots and lots of laughter.  Kids never seem to tire of this game.  Parents, on the other hand…

Ring around the rosies
A pocket full of posies
Ashes, ashes
We all fall down

The third line of the nursery rhyme is often sung as “Ah-tishoo, ah-tishoo…” or sometimes, “Upstairs, downstairs…”

Some other verses exist, although they are not nearly as well known, especially in the United States:

The King has sent his daughter
To fetch a pail of water
Ah-tishoo, ah-tishoo
We all fall down

The bird upon the steeple
Sits high above the people
Ah-tishoo, ah-tishoo
We all fall down

The cows are in the meadow
Eating buttercups
Bringing up the posies
We all pop up!

There is a popular myth that this nursery rhyme describes the Great Plague of London (1665) or other outbreaks of bubonic (black) plague.  Both Wikipedia and Snopes.com have very good articles debunking this supposed origin.

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Entry filed under: Action/Movement, Nursery Rhymes, Traditional Songs.

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