# Hey diddle diddle

year 1765 origin England

# Lyrics

Hey diddle diddle, the cat and the fiddle,
The cow jumped over the moon.
The little dog laughed to see such fun
And the dish ran away with the spoon!

# History and Meaning

Hey Diddle Diddle is one of the most famous 'Nonsense Rhymes'. There is no one credible theory that stands out as to its origins. Some possible interpretations are:

# The Pub Game

There was an old English pub game called knurr and spell dating back to the 1300s. A small ball (the knurr) is held in a levered wooden trap (the spell). Once the lever is struck the knurr flies into the air and the player uses a bat to hit the ball as far as possible. Perhaps the game would have been played to the sound of music on the fiddle, and the knurr may have been referred to as 'the cat'. The link is reinforced by the large number of pubs called 'The Cat and the Fiddle'.

# Stars

The characters in the rhyme could be related to constellations:

  • the cat = Leo
  • the fiddle = Lyra, the lyre being a stringed instrument
  • the cow = Taurus, the bull
  • the little dog = Canis minor, canis being the latin for dog
  • the dish = Crater, a type of ancient greek cup
  • the spoon = Ursa Major, which looks like a ladle

# Music Video