Did You Sing the Rhyme “Rubber Dolly”?

Ann Marie wrote me looking for information about the “Rubber Dolly” rhyme…

Hi Lisa:

Are you familiar with the rhyme entitled “Rubber Dolly?” It starts out:

My mother told me
If I were goodie
That she would buy me
A rubber dolly . . .

These lyrics pop up in an essay I am working on. Specifically, I need to know if this is an American Clapping Song, a Rhyme, a Jump Rope Song, or . . . something else!

Thank for your time.

Best,

Ann Marie
Cleveland, Ohio

I found information that “Rubber Dolly” was a jump rope rhyme that was popular in the 1950’s.

Here’s a longer version:

My mother told me
If I were goodie
That she would buy me
A rubber dolly.

My auntie* told her,
I kissed a soldier,
Now she won’t buy me
A rubber dolly.

*Or sister

Some kids also did hand clapping games to “Rubber Dolly”. (I think jump rope rhymes and hand clapping rhymes are often interchangeable.) There’s also a fiddle tune based on the melody of the rhyme. Ella Fitzgerald sang a jazz song based on “My Mother Told Me” too.

If anyone grew up with the rhyme, please share your version if it’s different, also let us know if you played any specific game with it.

Thanks in advance!

Mama Lisa

This article was posted on Saturday, August 22nd, 2009 at 4:29 pm and is filed under American Kids Songs, Children's Songs, Countries & Cultures, English, Holidays Around the World, Jump Rope Rhymes, Languages, Mama Lisa, Nursery Rhymes, Questions, Rubber Dolly, USA. 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.

62 Responses to “Did You Sing the Rhyme “Rubber Dolly”?”

  1. Linda Austin Says:

    Oh, yes, I remember! This is really old. We did the handclapping game and used the “sister” version. I’m kinda wondering if this is a WWII era song.

  2. Lisa Says:

    I found reference to recordings made by John A. Lomax in 1937 that includes “Rubber Dolly” – I left the Library of Congress codes below in case anyone wants to look it up:

    AFS 884B4-886B3: Eight songs sung by older children. Brandon, Mississippi, March 9, 1937…

    886A2: “Rubber dolly”

    So we know it was around in 1937!

  3. Tinker Jack Says:

    Dear Lisa!

    I wanted to send you a Hungarian song, with MP3 and a traslation but this “Contribute” Click did not work. Is there any other way to send you songs? I really am sorry for being technically so invalid.

  4. Lisa Yannucci Says:

    You should see me try to work the TV and VCR remotes in my house! I totally understand about being technically inept.

    You can send me the song and mp3 by email to lisa@mamalisa.com

    Looking forward to receiving it!

    Mama Lisa

  5. April Morse Says:

    The version I remember has a chorus and then the rest of the song, although I don’t know which is which. It goes:
    3, 6, 9 the goose drank wine,
    the monkey chewed tobacco on the street car line,
    the line broke, the monkey got choked,
    and they all went together in a little row boat,
    Quack, quack,
    quack, quack,
    quack, quack, quack, quack
    (then)
    My mommy told me
    if I was goody,
    that she would buy me a little dolly,
    I kissed a soldier,
    my brother told her,
    now she won’t buy me
    that little dolly.
    (and the song just keeps repeating)

  6. Becky Kemp Says:

    The version I grew up with went like this:

    My mama told me,
    if I was goodie,
    that she would buy me
    a Rubber Dolly.
    My Auntie told her,
    I kissed a soldier,
    now she won’t buy me
    a rubber dolly.
    3, 6, 9 the goose drank wine,
    the monkey chewed tobacco on the street car line,
    the line broke, the monkey got choked,
    and they all went to heaven in a little row boat,
    Clap, Clap.

    My aunt used to sing that to my sister and I all the time when I was little. Such a great memory.

  7. Lisa Says:

    That’s neat!

  8. ZU Says:

    Hi
    I remember playing the clapping hands game and singing the rubber dolly song….”My mother told me If I was goodie she would buy me a rubber dolly, my auntie told her I kissed a soldier, now she won’t buy me a rubber dolly, and now I’m dead and in my grave and lay beside me my rubber dolly” so there it is from my memory as a child………enjoy

  9. Vickie Says:

    I was taught,
    My Mommy told me, if I’d be goodie,
    That she would buy me a rubber dolly,
    so dont you tell her, i’ve got a feller,
    Or she wont buy me, a rubber dolly.
    I wonder if anyone else sang it this way??

  10. Vickie Says:

    Also we sang,
    Once upon a time in a nursery rhyme,
    The monkey chewed tobacco on the street car line,
    The streetcar broke and they all got choked,
    and they all went to heaven in a little bitty boat

  11. mary Says:

    Yes, Vickie–that’s exactly the way I sang it

  12. Brenda Fealy Says:

    I was a child in the 70’s in Glasgow…we used to jump rope to Rubber Dolly !!!!

  13. Bohobojo Says:

    I remember The Belle Stars had a hit with ‘The Clapping Song’ in 1982. It was used as a jump rope rhyme at that time in the 80’s when jump rope games were really popular with kids. However I just looked it up on Wikipedia and the song was originally recorded by Shirley Ellis in 1965. You can use google to get the full lyrics for both songs.

  14. Christy Says:

    The song is “The Clapping Song” by Shirley Ellis. While it’s been used as a jump rope song, it is actually made for clapping. Here are the complete lyrics:

    3, 6, 9
    The goose drank wine
    The monkey chew tobacco on the streetcar line
    The line broke, the monkey got choked
    And they all went to heaven in a little rowboat

    Clap pat – clap pat – clap pat – clap slap
    Clap pat! clap your hand…
    Pat it on your partner hand… right hand
    Clap pat! clap your hand…
    Cross it with your left arm
    Pat your partner left palm
    Clap pat! clap your hand…
    Pat your partner right palm
    And a right palm again
    Clap slap! clap your hand…
    Slap your thigh and sing a little song go…

    My Mother told me
    If I was goody
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly
    My Auntie told her
    I’d kissed a soldier
    Now she won’t buy me
    A rubber dolly

    3, 6, 9
    The goose drank wine
    The monkey chew tobacco on the streetcar line
    The line broke, the monkey got choked
    And they all went to heaven in a little rowboat

    Clap clap!
    Clap your hands and prepare to pat
    Clap!
    Take your right arm
    Pat your partner palm with your right palm

    Clap!
    Take your hand back and clap
    Clap!
    Take your right arm
    Cross your right arm with your left arm
    Pat your partner left palm with your left palm
    Clap!
    Now back with a clap
    Take your hand to your palm and slap your thigh
    And watch the fun materialize
    As you sing this little song:

    My Mother told me
    If I was goody
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly
    My Auntie told her
    I’d kissed a soldier
    Now she won’t buy me
    A rubber dolly

    Clap!

    Clap pat – clap pat – clap slap
    Clap pat!
    Clap pat – clap pat – clap slap

  15. Lisa Says:

    That’s great! Thanks!

  16. Bob-The Down Home Show on WCBN.org Says:

    Check an incredible version: “The Clapping Song” from 1998 Mercury release “Shum Ticky” by Laura Love, a superbly talented singer, writer, player and performer from the Pacific Northwest. That track features rapper Sir Mix-A-Lot joining her, and they stretch it out in a gliding romp of funky rhythms .

  17. Pam Says:

    We played this as a clapping game in the Chicago area in the early 60’s. Two people clapped, similar to “pattycake”, but criss-crossed arms on the front of your own shoulders at one point. We had an abbreviated version of the rhyme:

    My mommy told me
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly
    But someone told her
    I kissed a soldier
    Now she won’t buy me
    That rubber dolly.
    But now I’m married
    To that same soldier
    And now she’s sorry
    She didn’t buy me
    That rubber dolly.

  18. Cindi Says:

    Hi,
    My mother sang this song to me as a child in the early sixties. She told me that her grandmother sang it to her when she was a child, Which would’ve been in the thirties,
    She had another verse, so what I heard was this
    My Mama told me
    If I was goody
    then she would buy me a rubber dolly

    So don’t you tell her
    I kissed a feller
    Or she wont buy me a rubber dolly
    (repeat first verse and then)
    my sister told her
    I kissed a soldier
    Now she won’t buy me
    a rubber dolly

  19. Rubber Keypads Says:

    I loved this one I remember how my granny used to sing me this:

    My mommy told me
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly
    But someone told her
    I kissed a soldier
    Now she won’t buy me
    That rubber dolly.
    But now I’m married
    To that same soldier
    And now she’s sorry
    She didn’t buy me
    That rubber dolly.

  20. Michael Van Pelt Says:

    i remember the girls jumping rope to it in the 1960’s. i remember feeling sad because the last verse went “now i am dead, and in my grave, and there beside me, a rubber dolly.”

  21. Maxine Rhea Says:

    I remember a couple of versions my grandmother taught me.
    My mommy told me
    If I be goody
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly
    I kisssed a soldier
    And then I told her
    Now she won’t buy me
    A rubber dolly

    My grandmother also used to substitute, “tipper tolly” for “rubber dolly”

  22. Lisa Yannucci Says:

    I received this comment recently:

    The second part I knew was as follows….
    Clap hands, clap hands, clap hands:
    My mother told me, if I were goody
    that she would buy me a rubber dolly
    my auntie told her I kissed a solider now she won’t buy me a rubber dolly.

  23. jvanos55@gmail.com Says:

    Probably way too late for your work, but the Rubber dollie song was a marching song from World War One. Australian soldiers sang it, and probably learnt it from British soldiers at the western front.

    It’s quoted in the book “To the Last Ridge” by WH Downing, first published in 1920, and he writes about hearing a wounded man out in No Man’s land at Fromelles, singing it in his delirium.

    I was fascinated to see it, as I first heard it in a modern pop song some years ago.

    regards,
    Jo

  24. Fran Says:

    I sang it this way as a child in the ’30’s:
    My mother told me
    That she would buy me
    A brand new dolly if I’d be good.
    Now don’t you tell her
    I kissed a feller
    Down in the cellar
    Behind the wood.

  25. Ina Says:

    My grandmother taught me to sing that song when I was little back in the 80s! I had no idea it was also used as a clapping rhyme.

    She did explain that it was a song from WWI, and that due to shortages rubber was hard to get. So a new rubber dolly would have been a prized possession.

    I think my great-grandmother must have passed it down, because my grandma wasn’t born until 1932.
    It’s also possible that my great uncle taught it to them because he did serve in WWI.

    They were from Kentucky, USA.
    It is really interesting to see how these songs spread so far and so quickly!

  26. Lisa Says:

    That’s interesting Ina! Thanks for sharing. -Mama Lisa

  27. Bo Laurent Says:

    I got here searching for words that I remembered my grandfather singing. He was born 1899, and I had the impression that he was singing a song from World War I (he was in the United States Navy, sailed to Italy).

  28. Olivia Says:

    I sang this as a kid in 1948 or 9. Very catchy tune and it just popped into my mind in 2013. Good one aye?

  29. chloe grange Says:

    I remember this song from last week when my friend Sabrina told me it. We kept singing it in class though. Very catchy song. :-)

  30. TERENCE Says:

    My mother was born in 1891 and I remember her singing the Dolly verse in the 1930s. I believe she first heard it during WW1.

  31. Kim Says:

    This song is currently being used here in Australia as the background for KMart TV ads. I thought I remembered it as a playground kids song, and looking up the words got me to here.

  32. Mellissa Says:

    I hear it in the Aussie Kmart ad too(from the clapping song of the 80s which includes the goose and the monkey and the little row boat etc etc)mind you in the ad they have changed it somewhat – no kissing soldiers there!

    Anyway, my mother knew it as a skipping/ball throwing song as she grew up in the 40s in London.
    My mother told me, if I was good y
    Then she would buy me, a rubber dolly
    But then I told her, I kissed a soldier,
    Now she wont buy me, a rubber dolly

    Some research says there was a music hall song in the 1890s called Rubber Dolly.
    Fascinating.

  33. Di Says:

    re; Kims remarks “this song is currently being used here in Australia as the background for KMart TV ads”
    It is, but I first time I heard it was some months previously on the ‘Australia’s Got Talent’ show, sung by a comedy act. Two women dressed up in frilly little girl dresses and eating/throwing spaghetti around a kitchen – they bombed out very quickly as I recall although Dawn French was one of the judges and she said she quite liked the comedy aspect. Snippets have been stuck in my head ever since so looked up the words once KMart started using it

  34. Lisa Says:

    If anyone would like to chant or sing this for us, we’d love to add a recording to Mama Lisa’s World! Please email me if you’re interested. -Mama Lisa

  35. James Taylor Says:

    I can recall my sisters and their girlfriends skipping (I guess you call it “jump rope”) to this in the early 40’s. Some of the words were different – maybe because we in Australia weren’t familiar with streetcars as we had trams. There was something about trams and the line broke but the rest is much as I remember it.

    I, too, heard it on television ads and it has haunted me. I couldn’t get it out of my head. Now I have googled it and it all comes back to me: hot summer evenings, the road and footpath still warm from the sun, light fading and girls in pigtails and summer frocks taking turns to skip in pairs and clapping hands while they sang that song. I can still hear the “hissing of summer lawns” (thanks Joni) and the crickets starting up as the sprinklers did their work. Mmmmm, and Mum would bring out a big jug of homemade lemonade for the kids in the street . . .

  36. Mary Ray Says:

    My mother’s version had another verse:

    My mama told me,
    if I was goody
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly.

    Now don’t you tell ‘er
    I’ve got a feller
    Or she won’t buy me
    A rubber dolly.

    Somebody told her
    I kissed a soldier.
    Now she won’t buy me
    A rubber dolly

  37. Mike Says:

    The KMart version being sampled in Australia is from

    The Rebelles – ‘The Clapping Song’

    3, 6, 9
    The goose drank wine
    The monkey chew tobacco on the streetcar line
    The line broke, the monkey got choked
    And they all went to heaven in a little rowboat

    Clap pat – clap pat – clap pat – clap slap
    Clap pat! clap your hand…
    Pat it on your partner hand… right hand
    Clap pat! clap your hand…
    Cross it with your left arm
    Pat your partner left palm
    Clap pat! clap your hand…
    Pat your partner right palm
    And a right palm again
    Clap slap! clap your hand…
    Slap your thigh and sing a little song go…

    My Mother told me
    If I was goody
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly
    My Auntie told her
    I’d kissed a soldier
    Now she won’t buy me
    A rubber dolly

  38. Liz Says:

    If I’m not mistaken, the words have been highly “sanitised” for the K-mart advertisements, which since it’s a children’s skipping and clapping rhyme, is hilarious if so. I am slightly hard of hearing but having heard it a number of times, I think they are singing:

    “3,6,9,
    the goose drank lime,
    The monkey threw tomato (pronounced to-may-to)
    on the streetcar line.
    The line broke,
    The monkey got woke (grammar!!)
    And they all went to heaven
    in a little row boat.

    Clap, clap,
    Clap, clap,
    Clap, clap,
    Clap!

    My mamma told me,
    If I was goodie,
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly.”

  39. Wesley Frazier Says:

    I heard Rubber Dolly in the 1940’s my mother had it on an old 78 RPM record, I got the impresion that it was from WW2

  40. Julian Says:

    To be honest I’m not too worried that Kmart have ‘washed’ the lyrics. It’s just such a wonderful song, I’m so pleased to be reminded of it. It’s just got that sassy, cheeky, 14 year old girly flash that teenage boys never forget!
    I remember it from the ’50s or 60’s in Kent, England. Whether it was a skipping song or a ‘pop’ hit I can’t remember. Either way it’s a gem of folk art.

  41. Joe Says:

    The song goes 369 the goose drank wine and the monkey chewed tobacco on the street, car line The line broke the monkey choked and they all went to heaven on a little row boat

    My mommy told me that if I was goody she would buy me a rubber Dolly
    My Annie told her I kiss a soldier now she won’t find me that rubber Dolly
    Clap clap clap clap clap or you can you quack quack quack quack quack

  42. Gaz Says:

    so my burning question is – what the heck is this rubber dolly that they talk about?

    I know it’s a nonsense song but that dolly has to mean something – esp. if people are being buried with one (in some versions anyway)

  43. Diana Dunham Says:

    i was born I ’36. My dad would sing me:”My mother told me that she would buy me a rubber dolly if I’d be good. So please don’t tell her I got a feller or she won’t buy me no rubber dolly.”

  44. Karen Says:

    This was a patty cake game that we played on our block in Brooklyn during the 1970s.

    I am a little Dutch Girl
    As pretty as pretty can be be
    All all the boys around my block
    Go crazy over me, me

    Who you gonna marry?
    Tom Jones!
    What you gonna feed him?
    Dog Bones!

    My mommy told me, if I was goodie
    That she would buy me a rubber dolly
    My auntie told her, I kissed a soldier
    Now she wont buy me, a rubber dolly

    Three Six Nine,
    The goose drank wine,
    The monkey ate tobacco on the streetcar line
    The line broke and the monkey got choked
    And they all went to heaven in a little row boat.

    Clap One,
    Clap Two
    Clap Three
    Clap Four, Clap Five, Six Seven Eight …(On until Clap Twenty.)

  45. Chris Says:

    Fascinating!

    I knew it from the Shirley Ellis version in the sixties (thanks Christy – I wouldn’t have remembered her name but for your post). That recording was played a lot by pop radio stations in England at the time. I never would have guessed about the song’s use by soldiers in WWI but I doubt that would be its origin, as it doesn’t really sound like something soldiers would make up by themselves.

  46. Ellen Says:

    It was passed down in our neighborhood as:

    My mommy told me,
    if I was goody,
    That she would buy me
    a rubber dolly.

    So don’t you tell her,
    I kissed a feller
    Down in the cellar,
    behind the door, door, door.

    But someone told her,
    I kissed a soldier
    Down in the cellar,
    behind the door.

    Now she won’t buy me
    a rubber dolly
    and I’ll be married,
    forever more, more more.

    It was a clapping song:
    Slap palms on knees, clap hands together.
    Two people slap right hands together, then clap their hands together,
    then the same with their left hands and clap hands together, then do both right and left. Then we criss-crossed our hands to our shoulders and started all over again. when the words were said three times in a row, we did the action where our hands were three times in a row.

  47. Uncle dave Says:

    My mommy told me if I be goodie she
    Would buy me a rubber dolly.
    So don’t you tell her
    That you’re my feller
    Or she won’t buy me a rubber dolly.

    Heard from my grandparents in the 50’s.

  48. Cindy Matthews Says:

    This is fun, comparing how we all sang this song. Funny that there are some who sang it to clapping and some as a jump rope rhyme. We did it both ways.

    I’ve always wondered if the 3-6-9 part was really from a different song – they don’t really seem to go together, but I suppose in a silly clapping/jumping/marching tune, it wouldn’t matter if they make sense!

    Karen added another verse about the little Dutch girl – that’s interesting. We sang that as a completely different song, with a different tune and the words were somewhat different, and it has several verses.

    “I am a pretty little Dutch girl,
    as pretty as pretty can be be be.

    And all the boys in my hometown
    are crazy over me me me.

    My father gave me peaches
    My mother gave me pears.

    My boyfriend gave me fifty cents
    and kissed me on the stairs.

    My brother ate the peaches.
    My sister ate the pears.

    My father took the fifty cents
    and spanked me on the stairs.

    This was also a clapping game but we jumped rope to it as well.

    Cindy<

  49. Steve Says:

    My mother taught it to us in the 1950’s. She had learned it as a girl in Texas.

    My mother told me,
    if I was goody,
    That she would buy me
    a rubber dolly.

    Now don’t you tell her,
    I’ve got a feller,
    ’cause she won’t buy me
    a rubber dolly.

    I would say that is an earlier verse than the kissed a soldier verse.

  50. Barbara Huet de Guerville Says:

    You’re right – the 3, 6, 9 is from Leonard Chase’s The Clap Song sung by Shirley Ellis in 1964. Chase borrowed heavily from Little Rubber Dolly, composed/performed in 1930. Both knew a good thing when they heard My Little Dutch Dolly.
    For what it’s worth, 3 6 9 is supposed to be the number cops identify each other by, according to several online sources.
    Folklorists classify it as a clapping song. We knew it as a hand jive song.

  51. Barbara Huet de Guerville Says:

    My bad – it’s Lincoln Chase and it was The Light Crust Doughboys, a Western swing band, who recorded it in 1939. Bob Wills started with this group.
    pancocojams.blogspot.com has a terrific post dated August 9, 2012 : 3, 6, 9 the goose drank wine, the clapping song (Rhyme, Song Lyrics, & Video Examples) that trace the song to England and Sotland.
    One of her most authoritative commentators is Stephen Gradham who shares one English version and another from Chamber’s Popular Rhymes of Scotland.

  52. Maria Says:

    My version is the same as Becky Kemp’s, but with an extra Clap, Clap at the end:

    Becky Kemp Says:
    October 3rd, 2009 at 10:50 pm
    The version I grew up with went like this:

    My mama told me,
    if I was goodie,
    that she would buy me
    a Rubber Dolly.
    My Auntie told her,
    I kissed a soldier,
    now she won’t buy me
    a rubber dolly.

    3, 6, 9 the goose drank wine,
    the monkey chewed tobacco on the street car line,
    the line broke, the monkey got choked,
    and they all went to heaven in a little row boat,
    Clap, Clap.

  53. Barb Nichols-Alleman Says:

    My niece just brought it up today. Said my sister used to sing it to her. She couldn’t remember, so I sang it to her. My sister and I knew it as a clapping song: My mommy told me if I was goody That she would buy me a rubber dolly My auntie told her I kissed a soldier Now she won’t buy me a rubber dolly. 3,6,9 The goose drank wine Monkey’s sittin’ on the streetcar line The line broke Monkey got choked And they all went to heaven in a little row boat. Clap back (while stepping backward & clapping hands under each leg). Clap back……

  54. Glenn Gibbons Says:

    From buck private with 11th Engineers in Panama in 1939-
    Do I want that dolly?
    You bet I do,
    Oh but that soldier
    I want him too.

  55. Michelle Says:

    I remember mum singing me a different version in 1960’s Australia. It started with the first line as a single note chant
    “I feel, I feel, I feel like a morning star
    My mother told me
    When I was older
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly
    But when I told her
    I was gonna be a soldier
    She wouldn’t buy me
    That rubber dolly”

    Strange regional variations!

  56. Maleah Says:

    I always thought it was rubber jhonny and I never knew what it meant

  57. Connie Reed Says:

    We sang it as a clapping song:

    My mommy told me
    If I was goody
    That she would buy me
    A rubber dolly

    My auntie told her
    I kissed a soldier
    Now she won’t buy me
    A rubber dolly

    Three, six, nine
    The good drank wine
    The monkey chewed tobacco
    On the streetcar line

    The line broke
    The monkey got choked
    They all went to heaven
    In a little rowboat

    I was just trying to teach my granddaughter, and she thinks I’m nuts!

  58. Kal Says:

    @Maleah
    A rubber Johnny is an English term for a condom

  59. Marjorie McCarthy marjoriemccarthy@comcast.net Says:

    In Scotland when I was small in the 1950’s my grandma who was from Aberdeen, Scotland sang a song I always thought was from one of the world wars. It went:

    My mama told me
    that she would buy me
    a rubber dolly
    to call my own
    but someone told her
    I kissed a soldier
    now she’s not going
    to buy my doll.

    Just googled these words on impulse and came to your site.

  60. Margaret Jones Says:

    In South London, UK around about 1949-50s we sang it as both a clapping and skipping song as we played out in the street, no-one else here seems to have sung the last part, maybe we were an optimistic bunch, playing in post-war London streets, we would sing:

    My mummy told me that she would buy me
    A rubber dolly, if I was goodie
    But when I told her I kissed a solder
    She wouldn’t buy me a rubber dolly
    But when I told her it was my daddy
    She went and bought me a rubber dolly.

  61. William Bramhall Says:

    My grandma used to sing her version to me at bed time. Soft and kind…not a clapping song.

    My mama told me
    she had a penny
    And she would buy me, a rubber dolly.
    But don’t you tell her, I’ve got a feller
    Or she won’t buy me,
    A rubber dolly

  62. Gary Roberts Says:

    You probably wouldn’t want to publish it, but there is a slightly naughtier version of the chorus that I have heard. It goes like this:

    369
    The goose drink wine
    The monkey chew tobacco on the street-car line
    The line cracked (some say “snapped”)
    The monkey got racked
    They all went to Heaven in a pink Cadillac

    This possibly is just a very regional variation that some kids in my area thought up, but I’m not certain.

Leave a Reply