52 Weeks Photo Challenge: Week 11 – Round!

So many round things in this world. And I can’t get the nursery rhyme out of my head:

Ring-a-ring o’ roses,
A pocket full of posies,
A-tishoo! A-tishoo!
We all fall down

or the US version

Ring-a-round the rosie,
A pocket full of posies,
Ashes! Ashes!
We all fall down

Now, did you know where its origin is? Here is what I found:

The origins and meanings of the game have long been unknown and subject to speculation. In 1898, A Dictionary of British Folklore contained the belief that an explanation of the game was of pagan origin, based on the Sheffield Glossary comparison of Grimm’s Teut. Myth. The theory states that it is in reference to Pagan myths and cited a passage which states, “Gifted children of fortune have the power to laugh roses, as Treyja wept gold.” Believing the first instance to be indicative of Pagan beings of light. Another suggestion is more literal, that it was making a “ring” around the roses and bowing with the all “fall down” as a curtsy. In 1892, the American writer, Eugene Field wrote a poem titled Teeny-Weeny that specifically referred to fey folk playing ring-a-rosie. According to Games and Songs of American Children, published in 1883, the “rosie” was a reference to the French word for rose tree and the children would dance and stoop to the person in the center.

Variations, especially more literal ones, were identified and noted with the literal falling down that would sever the connections to the game-rhyme. Addy’s interpretation failed to account for the sneezing, which had not carried over to the United States and was losing ground in Britain, as another instance of the Pagan influence. Again in 1898, sneezing was then noted to be indicative of many superstitious and supernatural beliefs across differing cultures.

Since the 20th century, the rhyme has often been associated with the Great Plague which happened in England in 1665, or with earlier outbreaks of the Black Death in England. Interpreters of the rhyme before the Second World War make no mention of this; by 1951, however, it seems to have become well established as an explanation for the form of the rhyme that had become standard in the United Kingdom. Peter and Iona Opie, the leading authorities on nursery rhymes, remarked:

The invariable sneezing and falling down in modern English versions have given would-be origin finders the opportunity to say that the rhyme dates back to the Great Plague. A rosy rash, they allege, was a symptom of the plague, and posies of herbs were carried as protection and to ward off the smell of the disease. Sneezing or coughing was a final fatal symptom, and “all fall down” was exactly what happened.

Check out The Girls That Dreams Awake’s blog for great recipes and pictures.

So here’s what to do in regards to this photo challenge:

  1. Create a post entitled 52 weeks photo challenge :week (which week)-(the theme for the week)
  2. Create a pingback to this page or leave the link to your post in the comments box
  3. Tag the post ’52 weeks’
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16 thoughts on “52 Weeks Photo Challenge: Week 11 – Round!

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