The Old Dame

★ The Old Dame Story:

One child, called the Old Dame, sits on the floor, and the rest, joining hands, form a circle round her, and dancing, sing the following lines:

Children. To Beccles! to Beccles! To buy a bunch of nettles! Pray, Old Dame, what’s o’clock?

Dame. One, going for two.

Children. To Beccles! to Beccles! To buy a bunch of nettles! Pray, Old Dame, what’s o’clock?

Dame. Two, going for three.

And so on till she reaches, “Eleven going for twelve.” After this the following questions are asked, with the replies.–C. Where have you been? D. To the wood. C. What for? D. To pick up sticks. C. What for? D. To light my fire. C. What for? D. To boil my kettle. C. What for? D. To cook some of your chickens. The children then all run away as fast as they can, and the Old Dame tries to catch one of them. Whoever is caught is the next to personate the Dame.

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