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hickory dickory dock

Hickory Dickory Dock

hickory dickory dock activities Download the activity pack for 99p

Includes lyrics, a make, spot the difference, colouring and more
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Hickory Dickory Dock is thought to have been based on the astronomical clock at Exeter Cathedral in Devon, England, and this is one of the reasons for including a reference to Devon in this version as well as being a good rhyme for seven. I have also sung this version of the song to my daughter on many a long car journey to visit family in Devon.

The Exeter clock dates from around 1484. It displays the hour of the day, the day of the lunar month and the phase of the moon.

The original clock mechanism involved ropes that where lubricated with animal fat. The cathedral mice thought this was a tasty snack and would climb up the inside of the clock to have a nibble. Presumably when the clock stuck one, the mouse ran down. The clock mechanism is in a room behind the dial and is accessed via an old wooden door visible in the stone wall directly beneath the clock. This door has a hole at the bottom that was made to allow a cat to get in to keep the mice away so they didn't nibble through the ropes and break the clock.
The modern clock mechanism was installed in 1885 (Great Scott!)

The earliest recorded version of the rhyme is in Tommy Thumb's Pretty Song Book, published in London in about 1744.
The words Hickory Dickory Dock are thought by some to be based on Hevera, Devera, Dick. Which are the numbers 8, 9 and 10 in the ancient Celtic language language Cumbric. Or maybe it's just what a clock sounds like - who knows!

I first heard the extra lines of the song at my local library which they sang up to the number four - mouse ran out the door. I added lines for all the extra numbers of the clock including some silly variations to make my daughter laugh.
- Ed Hartwell

Video Credits:

Produced by Ed Hartwell & Sarah Simi (Woolly Vision)
Animation and Direction: Ed Hartwell
Art Direction: Sarah Simi
Mouse Puppet and Clock: Caroline Bletsis
Set Elements and Props: Laura Gardner (Little Egg Designs) and Leeanne Bell
Music recorded and performed by Steve Pretty

Activity Pack makes and drawings by Carol Law

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