They are centuries old and have enchanted generations of children.
But now nursery rhymes such as Baa, Baa, Black Sheep have gone woke – with the words changed to reflect a kinder attitude towards animals.
Baa, Baa, Black Sheep, which parents and teachers sing to children, traditionally starts ‘Baa, baa, black sheep, have you any wool?’
But in a new version the sheep explains it’s ‘not cool’ to steal wool and refuses to provide any for the ‘pastor’, dame or little boy who lives down the lane.
Meanwhile, the line in Little Miss Muffet which tells of a girl being ‘frightened away’ by a spider has been changed to say it ‘brightened Miss Muffet’s day!’ Miss Muffet has also become vegan – instead of eating ‘curds and whey’, she is ‘watching the bluebirds play’.
In This Little Piggy the mention of ‘roast beef’ becomes ‘roast beets’.
And in Three Blind Mice, the line ‘They all ran after the farmer’s wife who cut off their tails with a carving knife’ has been scrapped.
It is replaced with the mice still running after the farmer’s wife but the next lines are: ‘They told her “thank you” for saving their life. Did you ever see someone acting so nice as three blind mice?’