Thursday, March 5, 2009

Historical Treasures in Children's Literature #1

In my exploration of picture books I've found some treasures.

This is perhaps my favorite:
The Tragical Death of an Apple Pie

A was an Apple-Pie.
B Bit it.
C Cut it.
D Divided it.
E Eat it.
F Fought for it
G Got it
H Had it
J Joined for it
K Kept it
L Longed for it
M Mourned for it
N Nodded at it
O Opened it
P Peeped into it
Q Quartered it
R Run for it
S Snatched it
V View'd it
W Won it
X, Y, Z, and &,
they wished for a piece in hand.

I kept the punctuation as it appears in the book. Also, the "and &," is exactly how it reads.
The letters are, in essence, characters. This is a nice touch.

Are you as surprised as I am at which letters are missing from this ABC book?

The couple present tense verbs thrown in are an interesting choice. Actually the use of verbs for alphabet letters is a bit uncommon.

This book was written about 1840, unknown author, unknown publisher. It can be accessed at the Internet Archive American Libraries. The woodcut illustrations are charming. A later version (with different illustrations) which appears in Uncle Charlie's Book of Nursery Rhymes (London, 1897), still omits some letters.

1 comment:

Rose Green said...

That's a funny one! Now that I see it, I'm pretty sure I've read it before.

Also--who needs those extra letters, anyhow? Don't we have enough of them? :)