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nursery rhyme lyrics & origins

Nursery Rhymes Lyrics and Origins

Doctor Foster Rhyme

Nursery Rhyme Origins & History


The Origins of the words from "Doctor Foster"
The origins and history of the poem "Doctor Foster" are in England, this is made clear with the reference to the English county of Gloucestershire (Doctor Foster went to Gloucester...). This was a warning to children in bygone days, prior to modern roads, that what may appear to be a shallow puddle could in fact be much deeper!

"Doctor Foster" History
The origins of "Doctor Foster" are reputedly lie in English history dating back to the Plantagenet monarchy of the 13th century when King Edward 1 ("Doctor Foster") was thought to have visited Gloucester and fell from his horse into a large muddy puddle! He is said to have been so humiliated by this experience that he refused to ever visit Gloucester again! King Edward 1 (June 17, 1239 July 7, 1307) was a powerful man, over six foot tall - hence his nickname of Longshanks. Edward built many castle-fortresses in Wales as part of his strategy to conquer the Welsh who were lead by Llywelyn ap Gruffydd - Edward succeeded and Llywelyn became the the last Prince of an independent Wales (c.1223 11 December 1282). As a matter of interest Owain Glendwr was the last Prince of Wales, as Owain IV of Wales (c.1354 or 1359 c. 1416).

Our grateful thanks go to Peter Simmons for his help regarding the history of Wales
- Thanks Peter!

King Edward I - Longshanks

A Picture of King Edward I (Longshanks)


Doctor Foster poem

Doctor Foster
Went to Gloucester
In a shower of rain.
He stepped in a puddle
Right up to his middle
And never went there again!

Doctor Foster poem


Note: A Rhymes lyrics and the perceived origins of some Nursery Rhymes vary according to location


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Written By Linda Alchin