A Frog He Would a-Wooing Go

A Frog He Would a-Wooing Go
A Frog he Would a-wooing Go or also known by it's variant "Froggie went a Courtin" is story of a flirtatious opera hat frog and his rat companion visiting Miss Mousey illustrated by Randolph Caldecott. The story ends with the Rat and Mouse being eaten by cats and the Frog eaten by a goose. This story originates from a traditional Scottish folk tune originally found in "Wedderburn's Complaint of Scotland" from 1549 titled "The Frog came to the myl dur.'" The story has a reported historical significance to the reign of Elizabeth I and her habit of naming courtiers after animals . Her courtier, the French Duc' d'alencon, was called "Frog" by Elizabeth with other notable examples including Sir Walter Raleigh known as her Fish and Lord Robert Dudley Earl of Leicester her lap dog. (Parsons 1990) Similar to the end of the Caldecott's version of the story, Elizabeth's "Frog" Duc' d'alencon also died due to malaria in 1584 after he led a failed military attack on Antwerp in 1583. (Strage 1976, 273.)

Caldecott an English illustrator who was famous for his illustrated children's books.
Caldecott, often called the "father of picture books" was an English illustrator famous for his illustrated children's books and their influence on subsequent picture books. Maurice Sendak, author of "Where the Wild Things Are" defended Caldecott's assumed title when she stated that "Caldecott's work heralded the beginning of the modern picture book." Caldecott's illustrations were unique and influential in leaving white space around his line drawings in order to draw attention to the details of his illustration. (Randolph Caldecott's Picture Books) The Caldecott Medal is named after him, which is annually awarded "to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children." The award has been given since 1938 ("Welcome").

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Parsons, David G. H, "The History of "The Frog's Courtship" A Study of of Canadian Variants," Canadian Journal for Traditional Music, (1990) accessed July 25, 2023 https://cjtm.icaap.org/content/18/v18art6.html
"Randolph Caldecott's Picture Books: Hey Diddle Diddle and Baby Bunting," British Library, accessed July 27, 2023. https://www.bl.uk/collection-items/randolph-caldecotts-picture-books-hey-diddle-diddle-and-baby-bunting#:~:text=After%20teaching%20himself%20to%20draw,be%20incredibly%20influential%20and%20inventive.
Strage, Mark, "Women of Power: the life and times of Catherine de Medici," Internet Archive, accessed July 25 , 2023
“Welcome to the Caldecott Medal Home Page!” Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), November 2, 2020. http://www.ala.org/alsc/awardsgrants/bookmedia/caldecottmedal/caldecottmedal.
Date Created
1880 AD
Randolph Caldecott
George Routledge & Sons
31 cm
Geographical Coverage
Temporal Coverage
19th Century
Collecting Areas
Caldecott Picture Books Collection
English History of Writing Collection
English illustrated works (documents)
English picture books
Picture Books
Children's Books
Bibliographic Citation
Caldecott, Randolph, 1846-1886. A Frog he would a-wooing go. London: George Routhledge & Sons, 1880s.

Item sets