Translation © by Bertram Kottmann

Sing a song of sixpence
Language: English 
Available translation(s): GER
Sing a song of sixpence,
A pocket full of rye.
Four and twenty blackbirds,
Baked in a pie.
When the pie was opened,
The birds began to sing;1
[Wasn't]2 that a dainty dish,
To set before the king?
The king was in his counting house,3
Counting out his money;
The queen was in the parlour,
Eating bread and honey.
The maid was in the garden,
Hanging out the clothes;
When down came a blackbird
And [snapped]4 off her nose. 

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Here Malotte adds: "Caw! Caw!"
2 Malotte: "was not"
3 Malotte adds: "one, two, three, four, (ha, ha, ha, ha!)"
4 Malotte: "pecked"


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Singt das Lied vom Sixpence", copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Bertram Kottmann , Garrett Medlock [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2015-01-26
Line count: 16
Word count: 79

Singt das Lied vom Sixpence
Language: German (Deutsch)  after the English 
Singt das Lied vom Sixpence,
´nen Roggensack stellt hin.
Vierundzwanzig Amseln
war’n im Kuchen drin. 
Als man diesen aufschnitt,
da sang es überall;
war dies nicht ´ne leck´re Speis
für des Königs Mahl?
Der König war im Schatzhaus,
zählte dort sein Geld;
die Königin war im Salon
aufs Naschen eingestellt.
Die Dienstmagd mit der Wäsche
ins Freie sich begab;
da flog `ne Amsel auf sie zu,
zwickt’ ihr die Nase ab.


  • Translation from English to German (Deutsch) copyright © 2015 by Bertram Kottmann, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you must ask the copyright-holder(s) directly for permission. If you receive no response, you must consider it a refusal.

    Bertram Kottmann.  Contact: BKottmann (AT)

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Based on


This text was added to the website: 2015-01-26
Line count: 16
Word count: 71