Hey diddle diddle,
The Cat and the fiddle,
The Cow jumped over the moon,
The little Dog laughed to see such sport,
And the Dish ran away with the Spoon
Randolph Caldecott was an illustrator and artist from the 19th century. He was a well known children's book illustrator and typically his books cost a shilling a piece. The image to the left is based on the nursery rhyme, Hey Diddle Diddle. It is called "And the Dish Ran Away with the Spoon," and was produced by George Routledge and Sons in 1882.
The nursery rhyme, Hey Diddle Diddle, was written by the Ballard men during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I in England. For being a light and fun children's nursery rhyme, the true meaning behind it is powerful and dark. During the 16th century, there was a love triangle that was dark and criminal in matter; the end result was Elizabeth could not marry the man she loved.
|Robert and Amy|
Eventually, Robert fell in love with Lettice. She was charming, seduction, and desperate to marry. Robert, now Earl of Lester, and Lettice wed in secret because of Elizabeth's temper. Elizabeth wanted Robert, even though they could never be. The French ambassador told Elizabeth about the marriage, which led to Robert being banished and she refused to ever speak to Lettice ever again who she called She-Wolf.
So, how does this nursery rhyme tell this scandalous story? Let's break it down:
- The Dish was Robert
- The Spoon was Lettice
- The Dog was Robert Cecil
- The Laugh was by pushing Amy down the stairs, Robert and Elizabeth could never be
- The Cow was the Queen
- The Moon was forbidden love
"Hey Diddle Diddle - Nursery Rhymes." Hey Diddle Diddle. Web. 3 Mar. 2012. <http://www.nursery-
"Hey Diddle Diddle Illustration." LEARN NC. Web. 3 Mar. 2012. <http://www.learnnc.org/lp/multimedia/11428>.
"Lettice Knollys." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 21 Mar. 2011. Web. 3 Mar. 2012. <http://en.wikipedia.org
"Queen Elizabeth I: Biography, Portraits, Primary Sources." EnglishHistory.net. Web. 3 Mar. 2012.
"R.I.P. Amy Robsart - The Mystery of Her Death - The Tudor Enthusiast." The Tudor Enthusiast. Web. 3 Mar.
Soen, Nicola Jane. "Hey Diddle Diddle." - English Culture. Asha Sahni, 2012. Web. 3 Mar. 2012.