A Conversation for 'Oranges and Lemons' - The Nursery Rhyme

Oranges and Lemons

Post 1

Researcher 198105

Children in a remote country town in New South Wales, Australia in the 1960s played a version of the game Oranges and Lemons that did not have the usual words. They sang : " Chip chop cherry, the man in the dairy. [? Derry] Chop Chop ...etc." There is a similiar chorus with these words [different tune] in an early 19th cen. song called Ben Backstay. The game was played in the usual way except that the choice was between a golden apple and a silver cherry. No bells mentioned. Any ideas? Joy


Oranges and Lemons

Post 2

Mina

I've never heard of that one, although it's really interesting. smiley - smiley

Maybe some of our other Australian Researchers will know something about it.


Oranges and Lemons

Post 3

Researcher 200593

The following webpage:

http://www.geocities.com/TheTropics/Cabana/9424/page8.html

gives a considerably different date for the earliest mention of this rhyme. It says that Wynkyn de Worde included it in his "Demaundes Joyous" childrens book in 1510. I'm inclided to think that the author is correct. It would demolish the theory that the rhyme is about Henry VIII, since 1510 is earlier than any of Henry's weddings.
A painted board near the door of St Clements claims that it is the "Oranges and Lemons" church. My private theory is that the rhyme is a "count-it-on-your-fingers" game. There are 6 churches named, followed by "Chop, chop, chop, chop" -> total = 10. A similar rhyme would be "This little piggy went to market ..." and so on, counting on five toes.


Oranges and Lemons

Post 4

Mina

Thanks for that link. smiley - smiley I found that website while I was doing my research for this entry, and tracked a copy down to the British Library. They confirmed that this rhyme is not in the book, so I'm afraid that website is incorrect.

I like the theory about the counting though. smiley - smiley


Oranges and Lemons

Post 5

Researcher 200681

HELP!
A lowly student is in desperate need of O and L information. Can anyone tell me what is universally acknowledge as the earliest date for the rhyme.
I keep getting different ones and would appreciate anyone with a 'solid' answer.
Thanx


Oranges and Lemons

Post 6

Blues Shark - For people who like this sort of thing, then this is just the sort of thing they'll like

I know for a fact that Mina did exhaustive research on the rhyme, its origins and dates.

Her piece is as accurate as she could make it, so I'd guess that her answer is as good as any.

smiley - shark


Oranges and Lemons

Post 7

manda1111

Sorry to butt in on your conversation, but if
Researcher "200681"
would go back to there own page and then click on the "EDIT PAGE" button and then write a little something about your self then a ACE can come and welcome you there properly
Sorry for interrupting your conversation smiley - ok

Manda smiley - magic



Oranges and Lemons

Post 8

Mina

Thanks for the off-topic drift there manda. smiley - ok

Thanks Blues Shark for the vote of confidence. smiley - cheers


Oranges and Lemons

Post 9

manda1111

I did say sorry smiley - smiley

manda smiley - magic


Oranges and Lemons

Post 10

Researcher 198105

It's Joy again. I can't get past the difference in the choice of objects in the version of this game from Australia. Oranges and lemons seems to be there because of the rhyme, but golden apples and silver cherries? I can't help thinking about "Golden apples of the sun" Could this be an older idea? A tug of war between say: Night and Day - Male Sun and Female Moon - Light and Dark - Life and Death - Good and Evil ??? More appropriate surely than ordinary fruit. Or am I reading things into this children's game that were never there. Just wool-gathering! Joy


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