Damespaardjes - Dutch Children's Songs - The Netherlands - Mama Lisa's World: Children's Songs and Rhymes from Around the World  - Intro Image


Laur Crouzen wrote:

"This weekend I heard and saw my German daughter-in-law playing 'Hoppe Reiter' with her little son and my grandson (five months) on her knees. He enjoyed this song and game so much and laughed and laughed. I took to the Internet to find the correct German text and landed in your wonderful blog. I believe this rider-song and -game is of all cultures and languages. That's why I'm sending you some short text of the same ridergame in my mother language, the patois of Maastricht in the very south of The Netherlands near the Belgium and German boarder. It goes like:

Hop hop bayke, wiele-wielewayke
(Repeat several times and then comes the last 'let-fall-line':

Hop, hop, hop hop hop yuuuuuuuuh BAY!!!!

[The children's word bay for horse is quite unusual for a Dutch dialect, but it is believed to have its origin in the Spanish 'caballo' (middle syllable) and is pronounced in that way, so not rhyming with 'way' anyway.]"

Game Instructions

The Ladys' Horses: movement of the knees very fast and staccato.
The Gentlemen's Horses: the movement is slower and has more amplitudo.
The Peasant's Horse: The movement becomes rougher and rougher until:
Stampede of the horse and the child is thrown off, carefully, of course.

On some YouTube videos of this rhyme there's simply a repetition of these words:

Damespaardjes (Ladies' Horses)
Herenpaarden (Gentlemen's Horses)
Boerenknol (Peasant's Horse)
Please let us know if you think this video has been taken down by YouTube.
Please let us know if you think this video has been taken down by YouTube.

Thanks and Acknowledgements

Many thanks to Laur Crouzen for sharing both versions of this rhyme with us!

Loose translation by Mama Lisa

Dank u wel!