Publisher: Forgotten Books
Publication Date: January 30, 2018
Binding: Kobo eBook
To the nursery tales must be added the nursery games. These are now dying out, and yet they contain, by the machinery of their preservation through many generations of children taught by mothers and nurses, facts of our oldest history. They mimic the acts of the men and women of old times, and in this way bring back to us pictures of old life and manners of a particularly vivid description. This branch of folk-lore has been studied exhaustively, and Lady Gomme's Traditional Games of Children in England, Scotland, and Ireland affords a good example of what can be accomplished from a complete study of a special branch of folk-lore. Apart from those books which deal with the science of the subject, there are many collections, pure and simple, of legends, traditions, ballads, songs, customs; beliefs, and games. All these may be read with a great deal of pleasure. Care is needed to distinguish the good collection of these facts from the comments which the collector sometimes indulges in. A good collection of folk-lore is not always — or, rather, is very seldom — a safe guide for discussion of the origin or significance of any given item. But, these defects aside, the fine collections at the disposal of readers will repay perusal. And, if the reader should pass from the stage of reader to that of student, should desire to add to the sum of man's knowledge of man, there is a great work before him. He may collect still the remaining fragments of traditional story or traditional custom and belief. And the work of collection will be a delight and pleasure to him; for it will introduce him to men and women of great character and individuality, living documents of history. He may help to classify and arrange the material already collected, so that it may be ready for the use of the scientific scholar. The work is not difficult to a patient and systematic worker. It will be warmly received by many distinguished scholars, who would gladly welcome such aid to their own ...