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Frog Went A-Courtin' Paperback – April 26, 1972
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From the Back Cover
Nobody knows how or when this story really started. We do know that it was written down in Scotland more than 400 years ago. But it has always been the kind of story that was told and sung to children, instead of being read to them.
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
In a respectful author's note at the beginning, writer John Langstaff explains the origins of the song. Transposed from Scotland to America (there's a wonderful picture of a small yellow frog jumping from one bank entitled "Scotland" to another bank entitled "America" accompanying the explanation) the song has changed and grown over the course of many many years. Langstaff is quick to give credit where credit is due. Says he, "Sometimes the grownups might forget some of the words, and the children would make up words they liked better, and put them in the song". As a result, Langstaff credits the song to the hundreds of adults and children that passed it on to one another. His version is a combination of these, and perhaps the best possible. The narration is smooth and the lyrics scan perfectly. All in all, an enjoyable tale.
The illustrations are really what make this tale top notch. Artist Feodor Rojankovsky paired with Langstaff on a number of different picture books over the years. In this story, every scene is well thought out and delicate. The details are brought fully to life through Rojankovsky's adept inks and colored pencils.Read more ›
I don't think it can be done -- they are just THERE.
So, we always read it as a sing-along. (This book has the music at the back, for your little ones to plunk on the piano.)
Great illustrations with lots of personality.
The song goes back to at least 1548 in Scotland. Modern English versions are abound. There is not much new as far as the text goes. That's a good thing. No one messed with what already amazing.
If you are new to the tale: Frog has his eye on Miss Mousie. He formally dates her, and finally, asks for her hand. Miss Mousie, being a lady, assures him that she is interested, but requires the blessing of her uncle. She gets that blessing and the wedding begins with a colorful array of bugs and animals. They arrive each in their own kind of splendor, but things become chaotic. In short, it is a silly, fun book.
I still own my early 1970s copy. With a new boy around, I thought it important to create a library for him, starting with the tried and true. I was concerned some adjustments might be made.
There are some nice updates: Some pages include more of the original art (less is cropped). Colors are more vibrant. I'm attributing this to better printing processes.
Feodor Rojankovsky's art remains as playful as always. The pictures are fantastic yet plausible, meeting the expectations of the text perfectly. Ultimately, his art is the reason you want to buy this version, and the reason it has won awards.
I'm not clear what John Langstaff did as an author, given that the base of the folk song is so well-known.
I fully recommend "Frog Went A-Courtin'" by John Langstaff and Feodor Rojankovsky.
The story starts with Frog putting on his shinny black boots, buckling on his pistol and sword, mounting his trusty steed and goes off courtin' to the home of the ever beautiful Miss Mousy. The text begins, "Frog went a-courtin', he did ride, sword and pistol by his side...." The story ends with the lines,
"The Frog and the Mouse they went to France
And this is the end of my romance.
Frog's bridle and saddle are laid on the shelf.
If you want anymore, you need sing it your self!"
Of course the middle part of the story goes though the entire courtship right of the wedding, wedding feast and marriage of our unlikely couple, including getting permission from Miss Mouse's Uncle Rat. The words of the entire version of this song are well written and the last page in the book gives you the music chords to use. The music is the mode used from the Southern Appalachian Mountains, which in my opinion, is the best.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
We were so smitten with Over in the Meadow that we bought this one, too. It's not quite as beautiful or colorful, but we still adore reading it to our infant son.Published 19 days ago by Cory G Clarke
My mother sang me her West Virginia version of this wonderful song/story/poem throughout my young years. And I, in turn, sang it to my children. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Lloyd Jones
I simply love this children's book. My kids love it too. They want me to read it to them all the time over and over againPublished 8 months ago by Virginia
One of my favorite songs to sing with children! We've often done it as a puppet show, making up new verses for whatever animal puppets we have on hand. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Godfrey Coppinger, author of Buffalo Herd
Enjoy singing this to my grandson while flipping the pages.Published 18 months ago by Gail M. Lehman