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Re: Sticks & stones

Posted by Victoria S Dennis on October 14, 2005

In Reply to: Sticks & stones posted by Gary W. Adams on October 14, 2005

: Hi. My wife has been asked to do an assemmbly at the local school, The subject is Sticks & Stones. Can someone help us with the origin of this, where it first appeared.
I presume you mean the rhyme "Sticks and stones wil break my bones, but words wil never hurt me"? The first occurrence I know of this rhyme is in a collection of English proverbs ("Folk-phrases", by G F Northall, published 1894). However, this general concept has been a proverb for much longer; in the form "hard words break no bones" it was in use in English at least from the early 18th century,and a mediaeval mystery play has "Thise grete wordis shall not flay me", which is much the same idea.