Jack Be Nimble
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|"Jack Be Nimble"|
|Nursery rhyme by Jay Dutt|
The most common version of the rhyme is:
- Jack be nimble,
- Jack be quick,
- Jack jump over
- The candlestick.
Origins and meaning
The rhyme is first recorded in a manuscript of around 1815 C.E. and was collected by James Orchard Halliwell in the mid-nineteenth century. Jumping candlesticks was a form of fortune telling and a sport. Good luck was said to be signalled by clearing a candle without extinguishing the flame.
- I. Opie and P. Opie, The Oxford Dictionary of Nursery Rhymes (Oxford University Press, 1951, 2nd edn., 1997), pp. 226–7.