Jungfru Marias Nyckelpiga! - Swedish Children's Songs - Sweden - Mama Lisa's World: Children's Songs and Rhymes from Around the World  - Intro Image


Here's a slightly different version which can be found in Comparative Studies in Nursery Rhymes (1906) by Lina Eckenstein. The author refers to is as being from 1849. She translates "Jungfru Marias Nyckelpiga" as "The Lady Mary's Keybearer".

Jungfru Marias Nyckelpiga,
Flyg oster, flyg vester,
Flyg dit der bor din alskede.

Fly, Our Lady's keybearer!
Fly east, fly west,
Fly where thy lover dwells.

Here's what Eckenstein wrote about it: "In Sweden the ladybird is addressed as Jungfru Marias Nycltelpiga, 'the Lady Mary's keybearer,' and this expression is explained by the story that the Virgin lost the keys of heaven, and that all the animals helped her to look for them. They were found by the ladybird, to whose care they are now entrusted. The keys of heaven have been interpreted as the lightning which opened the floodgates of heaven. "

Thanks and Acknowledgements

This rhyme can be found in Popular Rhymes and Nursery Tales, A Sequel to the Nursery Rhymes of England (1849) by James Orchard Halliwell.

Halliwell wrote, "For the two pretty Swedish songs which follow I am indebted to the MS. of Mr. Stephens. The first is common in the southern parts of that country, the other [this rhyme] in the northern."

Translated by Mama Lisa and photo by Mama Lisa.

Tack så mycket!