How Many Bridges in London are Falling Down?

london_bridge

Language can be a funny thing. Sometimes you learn more about your own language when you’re working with a different language.

We were adding versions of “Bro, Bro, Brille” to Mama Lisa’s World. It’s a song that’s played like “London Bridge”. Monique, who translates the site to French and Spanish noticed that I wrote “bridge” in the plural. I wrote, “‘Bro, bro, brille’ is a game that’s played like ‘London Bridges.’” When she mentioned it to me, I instantly realized that the error came from my childhood. In my infant mind the line was, “London bridges falling down” not the correct line “London Bridge is falling down”. The two phrases sound exactly the same. I mentioned this to my husband Jason, and he said he thought of it the same way as me.

(Interestingly, the version I know is only one variation. Another version starts with “London Bridge is broken down”.)

How did you hear the line as a child? Please comment below to let us know!

You can find different versions of the lyrics of “London Bridge”, along with sheet music, illustrations, and recordings here.

You can find songs from around the world that are related to “London Bridge” here.

Mama Lisa

This article was posted on Wednesday, June 23rd, 2021 at 1:06 pm and is filed under British Children's Songs, Canada, Children's Songs, Countries & Cultures, England, English Children's Songs, London Bridge, Mama Lisa, 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.

One Response to “How Many Bridges in London are Falling Down?”

  1. Nana Says:

    As my mother sang it to me, it sounded as “London Bridge is falling down” etc …
    As I don’t remember all well, I usually sing then “build it up with iron pins” so it was obvious to me that it would be a single bridge. (Or it would then be “build them up” instead of “it”)
    I was happy to see all the lyrics on your site Lisa !

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