Monday, August 15, 2011

It's Raining, It's Pouring

We've had a few more weeks with rain off and on and the flooding was almost as bad as it was earlier this winter.
At night tucked up in bed you can hear it on the corrugated iron roof, or blowing against the window pains.
I don't mind it if I am able to stay in doors and the fire is keeping the place warm, but I can't keep from singing the nursery rhyme "It's raining, it's pouring."

As I have mentioned before on this blog, my mother would sing a song to us all the time when we were young, when ever someone brought our attention to something; and the weather and rain was often the subject to be sung about.

It's raining, it's pouring
The old man is snoring
He bumped his head on the corner of the bed
And couldn't get up in the morning

When I looked into this rhyme there seemed to be so many different origins I will just let you know some of them.

The rhyme is believed to have originated from Ireland during the commonwealth period (1649-1660) and the dictatorial conditions in the country at that time.
The poor weather conditions in line one reflect the genocide committed against Irish Catholics whilst the last three lines are most likely a wish that Oliver Cromwell, the Lord Protector of England, will die in his sleep.

Another idea is: "It was written about the meteorologist John Dalton. On July 27th 1844, after suffering several previous strokes, he made his last meteorological observation (presumably that it was raining) and during the night fell from his bed where he was found dead in the morning."

Little is known about the origins of the song, but it is believed to have originated in England (well renowned for its rainy weather!) The rhyme was often sung by children when they could not go out to play. The lyrics suited the ritual chants that children love. In the UK it is common for people to say that "It's pouring" rather than say "It's pouring with rain".

Then I discovered some more verses:

It's raining, it's pouring;
The old man is snoring.
He went to bed and he
Bumped his head
And he couldn't get up in the morning.

It's snowing, it's blowing
The old man is growing
He ate so much one day for lunch
Every part of him was showing.

It’s warm out and sunny
The old man loves honey
He tried to seize
A batch from the bee's
And they didn't find it funny.

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