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Mark wrote:

I’ve been trying to find out the name of a nursery rhyme my mother used to say to me in the early ’60s. It was a knee bouncer and she would lean me over backwards during some of the rhyme.

I’ll try to write what I remember to give you a hint of what it was. It sounded to me like this…..

Hutsy, gutsy geiler, hummin stuck de steiler (or something very similiar).

Anything anyone could do to help out would really be appreciated.

Mark

If anyone can help with the words to this nursery rhyme (and possibly an English translation), please comment below.

Thanks!

Lisa

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This artilce was posted on Monday, January 15th, 2007 at 9:33 pm and is filed under Countries & Cultures, German, German Nursery Rhymes, Germany, Languages, Nursery Rhymes, Questions, Readers Questions. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

37 Responses to “Looking for a German Nursery Rhyme”

  1. Angela Says:

    Could it be this one?

    Hoppe, hoppe, Reiter, wenn er faellt, dann schreit er.
    Faellt er in den Graben, fressen ihn die Raben.
    Faellt er in den Sumpf, dann macht der Reiter plumps.

    Rough translation:
    Bounce, bounce, horse rider, if he falls, he’ll scream.
    If he falls into the ditch, the ravens will eat him.
    If he falls into the swamp, then the rider will go plop.

    Angela

  2. Mark Says:

    I’ve gone over this in my mind thinking that this might be it but know in my mind that I distinctly remember it sounding like i wrote it in my earlier post. Although it is written phonetically and not in the german spelling I think it is still possible to figure it out. My mother doesn’t remember it and only says that she must have gotten it from her parents. Her parents were born in the United States and her grandparents in Germany so this is why I think it was handed down.

  3. Beth Says:

    Trying to research same, but different. The one we remember goes like this: Reiten sie kleine kinder, die die (?) nicht sie wachten zint (?) und wenn sie grosse werden reiten sie summ werden, hummily, hummily, hummily.

    Any ideas?

  4. Franklin Says:

    I grew up bouncing on relatives’ knees to “Hoppe, Hoppe, Reiter”.

    Thank you, Angela, for that moment of happy memory.

  5. Franklin Says:

    I forgot to add what is likely a family variation to Angela’s posted rhyme: the third line (in my memory) was this.

    Faellt er in den Bush (sp?), whoosh-ush-ush-ush-ush!!

    On “Bush”, the bouncing would suddenly stop, and with “whoosh” the leg would straighten and I (the child) would “fall” into the bush.

    :)

  6. Peggy Says:

    I am looking for the words to a rhyme my grandmother recited to us. Its over fifty years so my memory is definitely off. Last time I recited it I recall being corected by my sister who is no longer here to tell me what the words were. I think it is about some one playing piano.

    This is what I have in my head phonetically

    Mine tante ish clavere blimp blomp blimp blomp blimp

    Does anyone know of such a rhyme?

  7. Jeanette Says:

    Hi Mark
    I think it might be “Hoppe Hoppe Reiter wenn er faellt dann schreit er faellt er in den Sumpf macht der Reiter plumps & that would be the point that you were leaning backwards.
    Lovely Memories come back to me.
    Jeanette

  8. LaraLee Says:

    I remember my grandparents and also “old Papa” bouncing me on their knees and singing (terrible, I know, but I don’t know German any longer!) Horsa, Horsa, rida, mille schasta seila, mille schasta rodi ku, ut med du ! Then leg straightens out and child is quickly leaned way back. Any help on this would be great !

  9. Mark Says:

    Yep, that is ringing a memory bell LaraLee. I can distinctly remember that part of the song too. Now we’re getting somewhere! :)

  10. Jennie Says:

    Hello,
    I too remember bouncing on my grandfathers knee to a german rhyme and would like to know what it means. The words were different tho. I remember it as (and this is a shot in the dark as to how it is spelled)
    hoppe hoppe hoppe, fatcha loppe gollop, eiber schtich n eiber stein, obber niche da niche den bine.
    ANY, help would be wonderful, as I now bounce my son on my knee and wonder what it means

  11. Monique Says:

    This is…

    Hopp, hopp, hopp!
    Pferdchen, lauf Galopp!
    Über Stock und über Steine,
    Aber brich dir nicht die Beine!
    Hopp, hopp, hopp hopp, hopp!
    Pferdchen, lauf Galopp!

    English Translation:

    Hop, hop, hop!
    Little horse, gallop!
    Over stick and stone
    But don’t break your leg!
    Hop, hop, hop, hop, hop!
    Little horse, gallop!

    You’ll find the full version with its English translation on:

    http://www.mamalisa.com/?t=es&p=391&c=38

  12. Matt Says:

    Does anyone know of a variation like this one. Sounding this out phonetically: Hutta Hutta Herra (maybe herren), so bright and fair – a, and then it goes on and on and ends on “Triva Boomsach” the boomsach being where the dip the little kid down. My grandfather says this but he doesn’t even know the words correctly.

  13. angelika martinez Says:

    so fahren die damen, so fahren die damen,
    so reiten die herren, so reiten die herren,
    so schuckelt der bauer, so schuckelt der bauer,
    bis er runterfaellt.

    like this the ladies travel
    like this the gentleman ride
    like this the farmer moves (the cart?)
    until he falls down

  14. Dawn Says:

    My grandfather used to bounce me on his knee to something that started with Hop klee reide ligh. or some facimile of that

  15. Lizzy Wanders-Naumann Says:

    i remember the knee bounce song sounded like
    “zucker, zucker reiter…”
    instead of “hoppe, hoppe reiter”… anyone else? (does zucker mean sugar?)
    and then my favourite part at the end:
    “wenn er fällt, dann schreit er,
    fällt er in den Sumpf,
    dann macht der Reiter… Plumps!”

  16. Elle Müller Says:

    Mark, Beth, Franklin, Matt, Dawn, Lizzy:

    Another lady (from Wisconsin) was looking for nearly the same song – I’m sure of it.

    I copied her questionable lyrics and the best answer which did not have a on-to-one correspondence.

    This may be the best answer anyone will ever get or give.

    As we shall see, her version has a first line no one else has quoted in this thread, and it refers to the sound of a horse’s hooves and the wheels of a cart against a cobblestone road.

    Although the Wisconsin lady’s version is incomplete, this combined with Lisa’s supplied best guess on that page, and the other thread’s best source should be of great help.

    The Wisconsan lady asked about this version:
    ‘Scheckle, scheckle, reiderlein,
    Ven die kinder kleinerschein
    Reiden zie auf steckelein,
    Ven zie greissa verden
    Reiden zie auferden
    Zen zie verten,
    Klip, Klop, Klip Klop
    Reiden zi (then something like a scary word or sounds)
    “Boom stehl leckta!” really loud!’

    The ‘boom stehl leckta’ is obviously corresponding to ‘(Ka)bumms! da liegt er/sie’.

    Lisa’s first response is exactly what I would say to the two versions were I asked about it. The aunt gave a version where the final line supports the song having been sung to a girl, and the father’s version, to a boy.

    The best answer from another thread was this version (which is not a perfect match):
    ‘Schacker, schacker Reiterlein,
    Wenn die Kinder kleine sein,
    Reiten sie auf Stöckelein,
    Wenn sie größer werden,
    Reiten Sie auf Pferden,
    Wenn sie größer wachsen,
    Reiten sie nach Sachsen,
    Wo die schönen Mädchen
    Auf den Bäumen wachsen.
    Reiter, Reiter, übern Graben,
    Wenn er ´neinfällt, muß er´s haben.
    Fällt er in den grünen Klee,
    So schreit er: O weh, o weh!
    Fällt er in die Hecken,
    Fressen ihn die Schnecken.
    Fällt er auf die Steine,
    Tun ihm weh die Beine.
    Fällt er in den Graben,
    Fressen ihn die Raben.
    Fällt er in den Sumpf,
    Macht er plumps, plumps, plumps!’

    I have a similar version in my own memory that is halfway between the short version(s) in this thread, and the and longer possible-source version from the other thread.

    Explanation:
    This probably is the original (Saxonian) nursery rhyme of which you phonetically remember a portion (and from the looks of it, what you remember was “gesächselt”). The music to this version is probably the rhythm you sing your versions in!

    Title: Hopp hopp hopp Reiterlein

    Hop, hop, hop, li’l rider

    Activity: Kind hoppelt auf dem Schoß

    child hopping on the lap

    [Here's where the actual rhyme starts:]

    Hopp hopp hopp, Reiterlein,

    Hop, hop, hop, li’l rider,

    wenn die Kinder kleine sein,

    when children are small

    reiten sie auf Stöckelein

    they ride on a stick (horse)

    wenn sie größer werden,

    when they grow larger

    reiten sie auf Pferden,

    they ride on (real) horses

    wenn sie dann noch wachsen,

    if they still grow, then

    reiten sie nach Sachsen.

    they (will) ride to Saxonia

    Geht das Pferdchen trab, trab, trab,

    (And) the little horse goes trot, trot, trot,

    wirft den kleinen Reiter ab,

    throws down the little rider

    Plumps liegt er im Graben.

    thud, he lays in a ditch/grave.

    -=-=-

    Here’s a possible source for the music that nearly fits with any of the shorter versions, but it seems that something containing 7 syllables is missing between ‘Schacker, schacker Reiterlein’ and ‘Wenn die Kinder kleine sein’, or before ’shacker, schacker Reiterlein’.

    http://www.volksliederarchiv.de/kinderreime-573.html

    Last but not least, this YouTube video I found seems to almost match exactly, but I was not familiar with it until I stumbled across it on a web search.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJwP4_oqAvo

    Have I been helpful and thorough enough to forgive my verbosity?
    http://www.mamalisa.com/blog/can-anyone-help-with-a-german-songrhyme-that-begins-vender-kinder-klinderzine/

  17. Andi Anderson Says:

    My Opa used to say a similar nursery rhyme while bouncing us on his knees, but it ended differently. After the verse “reiten sie nach Sachsen”, he used to say (and this is completely phonetic because I know very little German)

    Cumpt tie klein auf vesserlein
    Falling all ay boompsienein

    at which point he’d straighten his legs out and we’d go tumbling backwards. Does this ring a bell with anyone?

  18. Helen Says:

    I am looking for a nursery ryhme source we think is German from my great great grandparents (from Germany). It sounds like:

    Empty, mpty, tippied fig
    eely, dealy, domen, egg
    itchy, pitchy, domen, itchy,
    om, pom, boo,
    out goes you.

    Has anyone ever heard of this one?

  19. Lisa Says:

    Helen – My guess is that it’s one of those counting rhymes that use nonsense words. There are many of those.

    Anyone else?

  20. Lisa Says:

    Here are some counting out rhymes I found that sound similar:

    1. Inty, minty, tippety, fig,
    Delia, dilia, dominig;
    Otcha, potcha, dominotcha,
    Hi, pon, tusk.

    Huldy, guldy, boo,
    Out goes you!

    2. Heely, peely, tipty, fig,
    Deely, doly, domi nig;
    Horter, sporter, Sally Snorter.
    Woa, har, gee, buck!

    from Virginia.

    3. Haley, maley, tippety, fig;
    Tiney, toney, tombo, nig;
    Goat, throat, country note;
    Tiney, toney, tiz.

    from Rhode Island, 1830.

    4. Ana, mana, tippety fig;
    Tine, tone, country nig;
    Oats, floats, country notes;
    Tine, tone, tis.

    5. Eeney, pheeny, figgery fegg,
    Deely, dyly, ham and egg;
    Calico back and stony rock.
    Arlum, barlum, bash!

    These rhymes can be found in The counting-out rhymes of children by Henry Carrington Bolton (1888).

  21. grace Says:

    This is what I remember
    ride-a-ride-a -gilee
    eldastunt a milee
    Gilee springed a vek
    Un de kindr falls in the drek

    ride and ride the horsey
    every mile an hour
    horse runs away
    and the baby falls in the dirt

    I do this with my grandchildren, bouncing them on my knee and leaning them way back for the last line

  22. Barb Says:

    How about another variety of a German rhyme posted above. My grandfather used to say:
    Inty, minty, dibbity, fey
    Alyus, talyus, dominey
    Eitchy, peichy, domineichy
    Oomp, boomp, bass
    Ulla, bulla, boo
    Out goes Y. O. U.

  23. Vince Says:

    My Mum and Gran used to say the rhyme about the rider something like this:

    Zucker, zucker Reiterlein,
    Wenn die Kinder kleine sein,
    Reiten sie auf Stöckelein,
    Wenn sie größer werden,
    Reiten Sie zur Pferden.
    Geht der Pferdchen kliperty klap,
    Denn felt den kleine reiter ab.
    Bumps da liegt er.

  24. Kay Says:

    Here is the knee rhyme I remember my Grandmothers saying:

    So reiten die Herren
    Mit blanken gewehren
    Pistolen geladen
    Trompeten geblasen
    So, Ru Tu Tu Ru Tu Tu Ru Tu Tu Tu

    The first three lines were gentle bumping, the last line was fast and furious bumping

    rifles and pistols and trumpets?

  25. Ruth Says:

    I have an answer to this post:

    Andi Anderson Says:
    February 1st, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    My Opa used to say a similar nursery rhyme while bouncing us on his knees, but it ended differently. After the verse “reiten sie nach Sachsen”, he used to say (and this is completely phonetic because I know very little German)

    Cumpt tie klein auf vesserlein
    Falling all ay boompsienein

    at which point he’d straighten his legs out and we’d go tumbling backwards. Does this ring a bell with anyone?

    I think the correct spelling would be:

    Kommt (Kommen) die Klein(en) aufs Wasserlein (Wässerlein)
    Fallen alle “bumps” hinein

    means: when the little ones reach some kind of water like a small river they all fall “bumps” (phonetic -> you let the child “fall”) inside

    I am not sure if you mean the plural or not. Maybe that helps you a little.

  26. hannah1990 Says:

    I remember a nursery rhyme about a white horse running through the woods that my grandfather used to say to me, it was also a knee bouncing one. It sounded like

    otzi botzi
    mopa deck
    squanda labya quandi peck
    ota ota

    Does that sound familiar to anyone??

  27. Alice Ewert Says:

    This is how my father-in-law, who was first generation German, sang it to the children, bounding them on his Knee.
    So reiten die Herren
    Mit___________ begehren
    Hup, Hup
    tipple, topple, tipple, topple

  28. Winnie Albright Says:

    I’m trying to find a bouncing rhyme my grandmother used.

    Phonetically (to the best of my recollection)

    Trips, trips trillion
    Munder hutten fillion…

    Does this ring a bell with anyone?

  29. Chad Lohnes Says:

    My grandpa was the grandson of a German who came to live in Central Illinois. I’m not entirely sure how much German he understood (likely not too much), but he had a rhyme that he would say as he bounced my brother, sister, and I on his knees, that sounded like this:

    Tro to tro to feel
    To Bauer to Ho to feel
    Field gave a loff
    An a spring feel da doff
    An a boop slida dint

    I so hope this rings a bell with someone, or someone can make sense of what words these might sound like. This is one of my fondest memories of something we did with my grandpa.

  30. Jean Yount Says:

    My dad taught us a version of inty minty. It goes like this,
    Inty minty tiggetty fig
    Deedly doe and dominig
    Once Ponce tres donce
    Alda balda boo
    And out goes you

    His parents came from Germany in the late 1800’s. My siblings and I all worked hard to learn the verse and were so proud when we mastered it. I taught it to my grand daughter when she was three.

  31. Barb Stone Says:

    “dros, dros, velia, da bower hut a fila,

    These were the words that I remembery my grandfather saying as he bounced me on his knee. At the end of the rhyme, he would straighten out his leg and give a big bounce; saying, “oops sa baby, oops sa baby.”

    This sounds lot like the rhyme from Chad Lohne.

  32. Andi Anderson Says:

    Yes, Ruth! That was exactly how it went! Thanks so much!

  33. Carol Says:

    Only know how it sounded to us as kids…..
    rite to rite the geilly
    al estone the mylie
    ebla globla gobla
    blootch blotch da leech da hem.

    Anyone have any ideas?

  34. Sue O'Loughlin Says:

    Barb – Did you get any info on your version? My mother-in-law passed down a song that went something like: Dros, dros drillia, … and I’d love to get both the German and English translation to the song written down.

  35. Lauren Norton Says:

    Barb Stone and Chad Lohnes versions sound similar to what I’m trying to remember my Grandma singing to me. As a child I remember calling it Horsey Horsey Drill – that was what the german words must have sounded like to me as a child. I wish I knew the name of the rhyme.

  36. Ray Hertz Says:

    My father would tell me German nursery rhymes when I was a child. The version of this rhyme I remember is

    Hup, hup, hup, hup, reit allein.
    Kleiner Kinder klein noch sein.
    Reiten sie auf Stock und Bein.
    Reiten sie auf Pferden.

    Ploop! Er fällt im Graben!

    Hup, hup, hup, hup, ride alone. (Reiterlein = little rider would make more sense)
    Little children still are little.
    They ride on stick and bone (leg).
    They ride on horses.

    Ploop! He falls in the ditch!

    Whereupon he slid me off his knee to the floor.

    I wish I could remember the middle part, but that was over 60 years ago.

  37. Lisa Says:

    Monique wrote:

    Ray – Google has only this one:

    Hup Hup Reitlein
    Wenn die Kinder kleine sein
    Reiten Sie auf Stock und Bein
    Wenn Sie größer werden
    reiten Sie auf Pferden
    Wenn Sie größer wachsen
    reiten Sie nach Sachsen.

    UH AU OO
    Aus Bist DUUUU!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HPtONe9sPyc

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