Archive | 16:09

My First Mondegreen

19 Feb
Lucille (Kenny Rogers song)

Image via Wikipedia

A mondegreen is a mishearing of a phrase.  It was so named by Sylvia Wright, who misheard a line in a poem.  From Wikipedia:

In the essay, Wright described how, as a young girl, she misheard the last line of the first stanza from the 17th-century balladThe Bonny Earl O’Moray“. She wrote:

 When I was a child, my mother used to read aloud to me from “Percy’s Reliques“, and one of my favorite poems began, as I remember:
 
Ye Highlands and ye Lowlands,
Oh, where hae ye been?
They hae slain the Earl O’ Moray,
And Lady Mondegreen.
 

 The actual fourth line is “And laid him on the green”. Wright explained the need for a new term:

The point about what I shall hereafter call mondegreens, since no one else has thought up a word for them, is that they are better than the original.
 

Other examples Wright suggested are:

  • Surely Good Mrs. Murphy shall follow me all the days of my life (“Surely goodness and mercy…” from Psalm 23)
  • The wild, strange battle cry “Haffely, Gaffely, Gaffely, Gonward.” (“Half a league, half a league, / Half a league onward,” from “The Charge of the Light Brigade“)

*

I experienced my first mondegreen as a child, courtesy of Kenny Rogers’ song, Lucille:

You picked a fine time to leave me, Lucille,
With four hundred children and a crop in the field.

I thought, ‘Four hundred children?  No wonder she left him.’  The line is actually, With four hungry children.

My second mondegreen came from the carol, Good King Wenceslas:

Good King Wensess last had gout

*

Here are a few you might find amusing:

  • From: I’ve Had the Time of My LifeNow I’ve had a time with your wife
  • From: Ticket To Ride – She’s got a chicken to fry
  • From: Abracadabra – Abra Abra Cadabra… I wanna freak out and stab ya
  • From: The Christmas Song – Jeff’s nuts roasting on an open fire, check for snipping at your nose
  • From God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen – Get dressed ye married gentlemen, let nothing through this May

You’ll find more here http://www.snopes.com/holidays/christmas/humor/mondegreens.asp and here http://www.kissthisguy.com/

*

*

How about you?  Do you have any mondegreens to share?

*

This post inspired by Viewfromtheside‘s weekend prompt, My first

Joke 332

19 Feb

I was getting into my car, and this bloke says to me, ‘Can you give me a lift?’

I said, ‘Sure, you look great, the world’s your oyster, go for it…’

*

%d bloggers like this: