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- A simple cumulative song in which a sequence of natural elements are linked, generally by diminishing scale (wood/hill/bog> tree> branch> twig> nest> bird> egg/feather, etc) but also sometimes as a “circle of life” (feather, bed, lass, lad, babe). It is popular as a children’s song and known by many titles. The Tree on the Hill is the earliest known title from the chapbook “Two Excellent New Songs”, printed in London in the 1790s. The Bog in the Valley appears to be associated mostly with Scottish/Irish versions. Similar songs exist in Welsh, Breton, Danish, French, Dutch but the earliest origins are not certain. The song is collected as #129 in the Roud Index of Folk Songs as The Tree in the Wood.
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