Author Topic: Nursery rhymes public domain?  (Read 2883 times)

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Offline DanetteFromOrlando

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Nursery rhymes public domain?
« on: August 20, 2009, 09:35 AM »
I'm researching to find out if some nursery rhymes are in public domain. Anyone know the best place to look? The rhymes I'm thinking of are well-known, including Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star. (It would serve my story well to have a character reciting one of these.)

Thanks!
A WHOLE LOT OF LUCKY, Sept. 2012
Violet Raines Almost Got Struck by Lightning
The Summer of Moonlight Secrets
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Offline thunderingelephants

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Re: Nursery rhymes public domain?
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2009, 09:54 AM »
My friend worked in an office with a creche in the same building.  He heard the children and nursery nurse singing "baa, baa, rainbow sheep".  Baa-baa black sheep was banned.
However, try some local nurseries.  I worked in one that some great rhymes and the kids loved them because they were interactive.

Offline HaroldU

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Re: Nursery rhymes public domain?
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2009, 09:56 AM »
If you can find them on the Gutenberg Project or bartleby.com, you're good.

"Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" is definitely PD--it's parodied in Alice in Wonderland, if I remember correctly, and that's well over 100 years old.

Frankly, I wouldn't spend a lot of time researching this. Use the nursery rhymes you want to use, keep a list of them, and note your source for each. When/if you get a contract your publisher will confirm that they are PD or not during the editing process.

TE, "Baa, Baa, Black Sheep" is also public domain. The change to the text in that case sounds like an instance of political correctness....
Harold Underdown

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Offline DanetteFromOrlando

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Re: Nursery rhymes public domain?
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2009, 10:21 AM »
Thank you, TE and Harold U! I'll check out those link, Harold.
A WHOLE LOT OF LUCKY, Sept. 2012
Violet Raines Almost Got Struck by Lightning
The Summer of Moonlight Secrets
Me & Jack

http://www.danettehaworth.com