Mary Mary Quite Contrary

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★ Mary Mary Quite Contrary History:

Mary Mary Quite Contrary is at first just another English nursery rhyme, however, there is a lot more about it that is hidden at first sight and only revealed once it is put into historical context. The rhyme can be found in the Roud Folk Song Index under the number 19626. 

The oldest known sample of the song dates back to 1744 publishing in the Tommy Thumb’s Pretty Song Book. Other versions have also appeared over time, with a commonly referenced one being the William Denslow’s rendition from 1901 which was accompanied by illustrations.

Marry is just a village girl growing a flower garden full of many beautiful flowers whose shapes the song describes, the moral message in this is that hard work is rewarded and the appreciation of hard work brings Mary happiness when she learns of visitors admiring her garden when passing through the village. This message can be given to children as a way of conveying the value of labour and the product of it. 

Mary Mary Quite Contrary Lyrics:

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells, and cockle shells,
And pretty maids all in a row.

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells, and cockle shells,
And pretty maids all in a row.

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