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Hickory Dickory Dock

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"Hickory Dickory Dock"
Roud #6489
Hickety Dickety Dock 1 - WW Denslow - Project Gutenberg etext 18546.jpg
Hickety Dickety Dock, illustrated by William Wallace Denslow, from a 1901 Mother Goose collection
Written England
Published c. 1744
Form Nursery rhyme
Writer(s) Traditional
Language English
Hickety Dickety Dock, illustrated by Denslow

"Hickory Dickory Dock" or "Hickety Dickety Dock" is a popular English nursery rhyme. It has a Roud Folk Song Index number of 6489.


The most common modern version is:

Hickory, dickory, dock.
The mouse ran up the clock.
The clock struck one,
The mouse ran down,
Hickory, dickory, dock.[1]

Other variants include "down the mouse ran"[2] or "down the mouse run"[3] or "and down he ran" in place of "the mouse ran down".

Origins and meaning

The earliest recorded version of the rhyme is in Tommy Thumb's Pretty Song Book, published in London in about 1744, which uses the opening line: 'Hickere, Dickere Dock'.[1] The next recorded version in Mother Goose's Melody (c. 1765), uses 'Dickery, Dickery Dock'.[1]

The rhyme is thought by some commentators to have originated as a counting-out rhyme.[1] Westmorland shepherds in the nineteenth century used the numbers Hevera (8), Devera (9) and Dick (10).[1]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e Opie, I.; Opie, P. (1997). The Oxford Dictionary of Nursery Rhymes (2nd ed.). Oxford University Press. pp. 185–186. 
  2. ^ The American Mercury, Volume 77, p. 105
  3. ^ "Mother Goose's chimes, rhymes & melodies". H.B. Ashmead. c. 1861. Retrieved 14 November 2009.