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The Tragical Death Of An Apple Pie

October 16, 2021
by the gentle author

Recently, I went apple picking in the orchards of Kent and now the time in the year for apple pie has arrived. So I take this opportunity to present The Tragical Death of an Apple Pie, an alphabet rhyme first published in 1671, in a version produced by Jemmy Catnach in the eighteen-twenties.

Poet, compositor and publisher, Catnach moved to London from Newcastle in 1812 and set up Seven Dials Press in Monmouth Court, producing more than four thousand chapbooks and broadsides in the next quarter century. Anointed as the high priest of street literature and eager to feed a seemingly-endless appetite for cheap printed novelties in the capital, Catnach put forth a multifarious list of titles, from lurid crime and political satire to juvenile rhymes and comic ballads, priced famously at a halfpenny or a ‘farden.’

A An Apple Pie

B Bit it

C Cut it

D Dealt it

E Did eat it

F Fought for it

G Got it

H Had it

J Join’d for it

K Kept it

L Long’d for it

M Mourned for it

N Nodded at it

O Open’d it

P Peeped into it

Q Quartered it

R Ran for it

S Stole it

T Took it

V View’d it

W Wanted it

XYZ and & all wished for a piece in hand

Dame Dumpling who made the Apple Pie

You may also like to take a look at

Old Mother Hubbard & Her Dog

Jemmy Catnach’s Cries of London

5 Responses leave one →
  1. October 16, 2021

    I had to look up the meaning of ‘chapbooks’! Interesting, and now can’t understand why I’ve not heard the word before.

  2. October 16, 2021

    Yes, such an apple pie can tempt you to do absurd and forbidden things …

    Love & Peace

  3. October 17, 2021

    Ah, I grew up with Kate Greenaway’s version of it. Nice to have that going through my head again!

  4. Melissa Delano permalink
    October 19, 2021

    So blessed at this time of year…we having been pressing bushels of apples for cider here in the southern Rockies…the bounty to be shared by all… with the universal comment: “it doesn’t get any better than this!” 🙂

  5. susan permalink
    October 26, 2021

    a couple of letter are missing .I and i htink U.

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