nursery-rhyme

nursery rhyme

Verse customarily told or sung to small children. Though the oral tradition of nursery rhymes is ancient, the largest number date from the 16th, 17th, and (most frequently) 18th centuries. Apparently most rhymes were originally composed for adults, many as popular ballads and songs. The earliest known published collection is Tommy Thumb's (Pretty) Song Book (1744), including “Little Tom Tucker,” “Sing a Song of Sixpence,” and “Who Killed Cock Robin?” The most influential collection was Mother Goose's Melody (1781), including “Jack and Jill,” “Ding Dong Bell,” and “Hush-a-bye Baby on the Tree Top.”

Learn more about nursery rhyme with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Search another word or see nursery-rhymeon Dictionary | Thesaurus |Spanish
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature
FAVORITES
RECENT

;