A Nursery Rhyme from history whose lyrics and origins preach that everyone should say their prayers

"A Nursery Rhyme,
the first step to
your children's education"

Goosie goosie gander: the lyrics

Obscure morality Nursery Rhyme
Goosie, goosie gander - an attention grabber to a nursery rhyme which uses alliteration in the lyrics designed to intrigue a child. The 'lady's chamber' is a room that no longer exists today but English history refers to a high born lady having her own chamber, which was once referred to as a solar. The origins of the nursery rhyme are said to date back in history to the 16th century and refer to Catholic priests hiding in 'Priest Holes' ( very small secret rooms found in great houses in England) to avoid persecution from zealous Protestants who were completely against the old Catholic religion. If caught the priest and also members of any family found harbouring them would be executed. The moral to the story and in the lyrics is to point out that something unpleasant would occur to anyone found not saying their prayers!


Goosie goosie gander where shall I wander,
Upstairs, downstairs and in my lady's chamber
There I met an old man who wouldn't say his prayers,
I took him by the left leg and threw him down the stairs.

Goosie goosie gander rhyme: history & origins