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,
Oh wasn't that a dainty dish to set beside the king?
The king was in his counting house, counting all 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 pecked off her nose.
(This nursery rhyme always ends with the tweaking of a child's nose!)
"During Medieval times, there were occasions when the cook in the house of a wealthy knight
did indeed put live birds inside a huge pastry crust. This was seen as
a great joke and the cook would usually have a real pie waiting
to bring in when the birds had been released."