Pamela wrote me about a rhyme that I’ve been asked about many times. Here’s what she wrote…
I am interested in finding a nursery rhyme in the Danish language which I learned as a child and have passed on to my children as well. I hope you can help me locate this rhyme. It is about an alligator or crocodile sneaking up on someone sitting on a log at the edge of a lake. I am probably not remembering the Danish words correctly, and I don’t speak Danish at all, but it sounds something like this:
A rita, rita, runkin
Demile hans hoose,
Kot on a moose
On little wahoon
Syin on a bankin
Slick upon a slick a sow
Woof! Woof! Woof!
I have probably completely ruined the rhyme with my bad memory, but I am very interested in learning it correctly. The Woof! Woof! Woof! Part is where the alligator eats the person.
If anyone knows this rhyme, many people out there would be grateful for the corrrect words. Please comment below or email me with the correct version!
UPDATE: I posted one Swedish version of Rida rida ranka on my Swedish Song Pages, one Danish version of Rida rida ranke, and 2 Norwegian Versions of Rida rida ranke on Mama Lisa’s World’s Norway pages.
More versions in the comments below…
This article was posted on Saturday, December 31st, 2005 at 6:38 pm and is filed under Countries & Cultures, Danish, Danish Children's Songs, Danish Nursery Rhymes, Denmark, Languages, Norway, Norwegian, Norwegian Children's Songs, Nursery Rhymes, Questions, Rhea Rhea Runkin, Sweden, Swedish, Swedish Children's Songs, Swedish Nursery Rhymes. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.
118 Responses to “Question about the Danish, Swedish and Norwegian Nursery Rhyme “Ride Ride Ranke””
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January 20th, 2014 at 3:22 am
This is the version used in my family!
Rida Rid Ranka
Hasten Heter Blanca
Vart Ska Vi Rida
Till en Liten Piga
Vad Skall hon Heta
De Tjocka och don Feta
Boof-deh Boof-deh Boof-deh
February 11th, 2014 at 1:15 pm
Here is a link to my Father singing this nursery rhyme. We grew up hearing this all the time. He just died recently, but he was Norwegian through and through. After he sings the song, he translates the meaning for the members of our family gathered at our annual May 17th picnic.
February 11th, 2014 at 2:30 pm
Sorry to hear about your dad. Thanks for sharing.
March 20th, 2014 at 6:48 pm
My son is working on a project about our Swedish heritage. I remember fondly the one Swedish song my grandfather used to sing to me while bouncing me on his knees. It is a Rida, Rida Ranka song, but I was under the impression it was about a big dog and a little dog? I will type it out phonetically the way I remember it…if anyone has a similar Swedish version, I would be forever grateful for the correct spelling and meaning.
Rida Rida Ranka
Hestan in a Blankan
Nellie Kol Him
Nol in a Brankan.
Woof Woof Woof (in a high pitched sound)
Woof Woof Woof (in a low pitched voice)
March 27th, 2014 at 12:38 pm
This is what our Swedish grandmother said to us (spelled phonetically).
Ria Ria Runkin
Heston hit da blunken
Varsko de ria
Tian lita peeka
Varsko hun hetta
May 17th, 2014 at 10:46 pm
Ride, ride Runken
Hesten heter Blanken.
Solomon var i silke toy,
Piken bor i neste by.
Dit skal vi ride.
Ingen var hemme.
To sma hunder sitter under vegan
Suker seg pa lobben.
Voof Voof Voof Voof Voof!
August 26th, 2014 at 9:43 am
My grandfather was Danish, my grandmother was born in Norway.
The version I heard was:
Ride ride Runke
Hesten hedder Blunke
En to, en to
September 5th, 2014 at 8:17 pm
I received this email:
My grandmother is full Norwegian, and I learned as
Ride, Ride, Ranke
to the Miller’s house
but the cat and the mouse
Ride, Ride, Ranke (she pronounced “ride” as “rida”)
til mollerens hus
ingen hjemme men
katten og musa
September 23rd, 2014 at 9:18 pm
I discovered your site by accident. I was doing some homework on a 6×6 Trivet that came in to my little consignment shop that has Rida,Rida Ranka in English and Swiss. If you or anyone on your site would be interested We have the Trivet priced moderately at 5.00 plus shipping. If you would care for a picture of the Trivet and to find out more information your readers can email firstname.lastname@example.org. I hope that you will allow this post to remain even if you take out the reference to selling because I have learned so much from your postings and really appreciate the love of history and family that your page is generating. Thank you for passing on such a gift!
November 12th, 2014 at 8:38 pm
“I came across your page – as I was looking for a nursery rhyme my Norwegian father used to sing to me.
I am typing it as the words sounded to me:
Rida rida runkin
Inna cotty etta ameldin poos
tipesaa – cre, cre cre cre
The words I found on a YouTube video:
Rida rida runka (ride ride quickly)
Tu Mueller Mon Hoose (to the miller mans house)
Inga von hema (nobody is home)
mon too small moose (but two small mice)”
April 26th, 2015 at 12:59 am
I have the same story as the rest…grandfather bounced mom on his knee, mom bounced me on her knee and sang:
Rida Rida Ranka
Til Mallen’s hoos
Der var ingen yemma
Men leeten katta poos
Setten on da borde
Peena en a tail
Meow, Meow, Meow
Ah! Woof woof woof
I never knew what it was about except the part about the cat. There are SO many versions of this rhyme! I love it!
June 23rd, 2015 at 12:55 am
I remember my grandmother (her parents emigrated to Hartford, CT, USA from Sweden; she was born in the US in 1908) singing this little rhyme to me and my siblings while bouncing us on her knee. She said that it was about a little boy who rides to a girl’s home, but no one was there but 3 small dogs, who if you didn’t feed them bread, they would go, “woof, woof, woof!”
I recall the first couple lines sounding like “Rida rida runkin, hester hitta brunken”.
June 23rd, 2015 at 2:05 pm
We have a version of your grandmother’s rhyme at the link below…
July 4th, 2015 at 6:49 pm
Many thanks Lisa!
January 31st, 2019 at 1:50 am
Thank you all! I feel that I am getting closer to the version my grandpa sang to us…I will spell it the way I remember it sounding…plus a little Norwegian I am learning….
Rida, rida, runca
Hesten hed a Blanka
Hesten hed en appelgro
Saten liten jenta pa
Rida, rida, runca
Anyone have ideas about what the “appelgro” might be?
April 29th, 2019 at 12:30 am
this is how I remember the the little song
ria ria honkin
hestin hitan blankin
con stan ta ria
most con ta ria
vooff vaff vooff vaff vooff
My Swedish / Norwegian parents never tried to tell me what it was supposed to mean
any ideas ?
November 23rd, 2020 at 5:59 am
Hope this Norwegian version works…
Ride ride ranke…………….Reeda reeda rahn-kay
Hesten heter Blanke………Horse’s name is Blahn-kay
Hesten den var abilgrå……Horse’s look was (abil?) gray
Satt ei lita jente på………. A little girl was riding it
Og jenta det var (name)…That girl’s name was …..!
I have sung this to my kids and grandkids.
April 7th, 2021 at 8:17 pm
Paul Kern wrote:
My mom used to say a poem from her childhood; it appears similar to your Ride Ride Runka entries. However, my mom’s version was something like (please forgive the phonetic errors):
Ride Ride Runken
Hesta heita blunken
Mine hesta kunda spenda
Deia dunken over enda
She translated it as:
Ride ride your horse
My horse is best
My horse could kick your doll
End over end.
Now, I don’t know if my mom just came from a very unruly family that they would include kicking dolls around in a poem, but that’s how she remembered it (she was never fluent – but her parents spoke Norwegian regularly).
Do you know of any version that is similar in sound or translation to her version?
Does this sound familiar to anyone? -Mama Lisa