We sing them to our children because they have jaunty little tunes, and seem to be full of fluffy imagery and childhood innocence. But a lot of them, on closer examination, are pretty dark. They are about some of the most brutal and unsavoury episodes in our history. Disease, death, religious intolerance, war and torture. It’s no wonder babies don’t sleep through the night. So I have made a video which reveals the shocking truth about them.
You will discover, they were certainly not intended for children
In this video we answer the burning questions which must have been bothering you all these years. Questions like;
Why is rock-a-bye baby in a tree top?
What was growing in Mary Mary Quite Contrary’s garden?
Why did Goosey Goosey gander throw an old man down the stairs?
How did Humpty Dumpty fall off the wall?
Why do we all fall down in the Ring-a-ring-a-rosies?
Why was Jack Horner so pleased with his plumb?
We also look at the reason these stories were given such chirpy and memorable songs and why the essence of the stories behind them were condensed down to such simple stanzas. It was in short, a very simple form of propaganda.
I hope you enjoy the video. Just click below to watch it in full and feel free to subscribe to this YouTube channel if you have not already done so.
Let me give you a flavour of one of these supposedly innocent, children’s, nursery rhymes.
Are you familiar with Humpty Dumpty? And do you like countless millions believe this to be a song about an egg? Oh contraire! If you are not familiar with it, here is a video. The main thing to note here though is the lyrics, and they go like this:
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again
The only reason people think this nursery rhyme is about an egg is because of a very famous illustrated, children’s story and song book from the nineteenth century. In it, the illustrator decided to depict Humpty as an egg. They did so without any integrity.
Humpty Dumpty was a killing machine. The absolute pinnacle of military engineering of its day. This was during the English Civil War which raged on from 1642 to 1651 between the “Cavaliers” who were loyal to the king and the “roundheads” who were republicans revolting to overthrow the monarchy in Britain. The Cavaliers had commissioned a huge siege cannon that supposedly combined the mobility of a small cannon with the fire power of a big one. It was not particularly portable as it was so vast and made out of iron. However, if you had enough horses and men, you could transport it to where it was needed, mount it on a stone wall (as anything less substantial than that would be destroyed by its recoil) and rain hell upon your enemy with the fire power of a fixed cannon. During a siege, when you were held inside a walled town or a castle, you never knew where your enemy might attack from so fixed cannons though powerful could be outflanked by a smart enemy. With this thing though, they had fire power wherever they needed it. As is often the case with big guns, the army had a jokey nick name for it and in this case, it was called “Humpty Dumpty”. I have to confess; I don’t know why.
During the siege of Colchester in 1648, Humpty was hauled with some difficulty, onto the top of the church tower of St Mary on the walls. Once they managed to get it up there it proved to be phenomenally successful and for 11 weeks it thundered down on the attacking “Roundheads”, blowing up everything in its range killing hundreds of men.
The roundheads knew that the only way they were going to subdue their enemy was if they took out this monstrous weapon, but on the battlefield, they had nothing that could match it for range or firepower. Eventually they managed to explode charges in the walls of the church tower itself which sufficiently weakened the structure to make it incapable of supporting this vast weapon. It broke free of the masonry that had been supporting it and tumbled over the town walls and landed barrel downward in a marsh. Because of its tremendous weight, it sunk into the ground, embedding itself to such a point that no matter how many men and horses were deployed to retrieve it, they could not pull it free.
And that is how Humpty Dumpty fell off the wall and why all the king’s horses and king’s men could not put him together again.
To be fair that one is not particularly dark. You should read the back story to ‘Rock-a-bye-baby’ though. That one really is dark!
If you want to watch more of my videos, my channel can be found at https://youtube.com/user/grahamloveluck. If you are interested in books on history, legend and folklore, please visit my online bookshop.