Sunday, January 23, 2011

Book review : Hey Diddle Diddle - Sam Foster 4*

I am quite interested in the etymology of words and phrases, and so was quite looking to this short work on the etymology of our best known nursery rhymes.  This book though is a bit of a let down, far too many of the entries contain no definite explanation and instead go for less convincing 'it might be that' or 'some people believe that...' stories that offer no real conclusion.

The book also smacks of too much internet research where the author even writes "it was claimed by the website Snopes that....", well, if that is an internet claim, and you are an expert on nursery rhymes, did you not conduct some more in depth research into the subject than a cursory glance of an urban legends website ?

The book is harmless enough for a quick read, but I would not recommend it as an authoritative explanation of rhymes.

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