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Archiver > Bristol_and_Somerset > 1999-01 > 0917297400


From: Woodward Tony <>
Subject: Willie, Willie, etc.
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 1999 12:50:00 -0800 (PST)


Sue <> wrote:

>Dear List
>I was taught a poem at school to remember the Kings and Queens of England,
it
>went like this:-
>
>Willy, Willy, Harry, Steve
>Harry, Dick, John, Harry three,
>One two three Neds, Richard two
>Henry Four Five Six then who?
>
>Unfortunately I can't remember the rest, (can't have been listening in
class!)
>Can anyone complete this poem for me?

A wonderful verse. It was printed in the back of one of my history books
when I was about 14, and I memorized it instead of listening to the lessons.
It has been stuck in my head ever since. But it's hard to write down
something one remembered by rote - stopping to write it down stops the flow
and I have to go back to the beginning each time. However, after a bit of a
struggle, I remember it as:

Willie, Willie, Harry, Ste,
Harry, Dick, John, Harry Three,
One, two, three Neds, Richard Two,
Harrys Four, Five, Six - then who?

Edwards Four, Five, Dick the Bad,
Harrys twain and Ned the Lad,
Mary, Bessie, James the Vain,
Charlie, Charlie, James again.

William and Mary, Anna Gloria,
Four Georges, William and Victoria.

That's as far as it went, and try as I might, I can't make up a decent
continuation for the 20th century.

Did anyone spot the mistakes? The verse leaves out Lady Jane Grey, who was
legitimately queen for about nine days after Edward VI. And to be very :-)
pedantic, Matilda was actually queen for a while during the reign of King
Stephen.

(Dick the Bad? Harrumph! that sticks in the craw of a Ricardian - I shall
go and wash my mouth out.)

Tony Woodward in Ottawa, Canada

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