Jack Sprat

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"Jack Sprat"
Roud #19479
Written byTraditional
Published1639
WrittenEngland
LanguageEnglish
FormNursery rhyme
 
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"Jack Sprat"
Roud #19479
Written byTraditional
Published1639
WrittenEngland
LanguageEnglish
FormNursery rhyme

"Jack Sprat" (or "Jack Spratt") is an English language nursery rhyme. It has a Roud Folk Song Index number of 19479.

Lyrics[edit]

The most common modern version of the rhyme is:

Jack Sprat could eat no fat.
His wife could eat no lean.
And so between them both, you see,
They licked the platter clean.[1]

Origins[edit]

The name Jack Sprat was used of people of small stature in the sixteenth century.[1] This rhyme was an English proverb from at least the mid-seventeenth century.[1] It appeared in John Clarke's collection of sayings in 1639 in the form:

Jack will eat not fat, and Jull doth love no leane.
Yet betwixt them both they lick the dishes cleane.[1]

The saying entered the canon of English nursery rhymes when it was printed in Mother Goose's Melody around 1765, but it may have been adopted for use with children much earlier.[1]

In popular culture[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e I. Opie and P. Opie, The Oxford Dictionary of Nursery Rhymes (Oxford University Press, 1951, 2nd edn., 1997), p. 238.
  2. ^ http://lucaslimited.com/Home_Page.php