What Nursery Rhymes Are in the Public Domain?

story telling and sing nursery rhymes for five children by one kid

What are public-domain nursery rhymes?

Hey there! 🌟 Let's talk about some awesome nursery rhymes that are in public-domain ✨

You know those cute little rhymes that we all love and sing? Well, some of them are totally freebies now! 😍 These are called "public domain nursery rhymes" and they're like the stars of the show because nobody needs to ask for permission to use or copy them. How cool is that, right? 🌟

But here's the scoop – most of these rhymes were born before 1923, way back when our great-great-great grandparents were probably singing them! 🎡 And in the United States, where all this copyright magic is happening, literary works are like unicorns – they get copyright protection for 95 years after the author does their final bow. πŸ“œ

So, if a nursery rhyme's creator passed away before 1923, it's like party time for that rhyme! πŸ₯³ Copyright doesn't boss it around anymore. Even if we don't know who exactly penned it, it's still out there for us to enjoy and share. πŸŽ‰

But hold on a sec, there are a few sneaky exceptions to the rule, just like those little surprise twists in our favorite stories! πŸ“– For instance, if a nursery rhyme was cooked up by a government employee, it's not free to roam around the public domain. And hey, if a rhyme has had a major makeover since it was first born, it might still be under the shield of copyright. So, like, some rhymes still have their fancy copyright capes on. 🦸‍♀️

So there you have it, the lowdown on those oh-so-charming public-domain nursery rhymes. Sing 'em, share 'em, and let them sprinkle their magic everywhere! 🎀✨

Wanna know more about the history of nursery rhymes? Check this out!

Which nursery rhymes are not copyrighted?

So nursery rhymes from before 1923 are like totally in the public domain. 🌟 Yes!, no copyright vibes! You can use them, no worries about that copyright stuff. πŸ˜„πŸ’‍♀️

You can learn more about nursery rhyme copyrights here.

Some super cool nursery rhymes that are all free and not copyrighted include:

  • Hey Diddle Diddle    
  • Hickory Dickory Dock
  • Humpty Dumpty
  • Jack Be Nimble
  • Little Miss Muffet
  • Mary Had a Little Lamb
  • Old Mother Hubbard
  • Ring Around the Rosie
  • Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
  • Wheels on the Bus

There are many others as well.

πŸ’‍♀️ So, like, if you're not totally sure whether a nursery rhyme is copyrighted or not, it's, like, totally better to play it safe, you know? πŸ™†‍♀️ You could, like, reach out to the copyright holder and ask, just to be on the chill side. But guess what? πŸ€”πŸŒˆ Most of those cute nursery rhymes from before 1923? Yeah, they're, like, in the public domain! πŸŽ‰ So you can totally use them πŸ˜„✨

Oh, and guess what else? 🎡🎈 There are, like, tons of those adorable children's songs that you can use without any copyright fuss. Some of the super popular ones that are totally free of copyright stuff include:

  • Bingo
  • Old MacDonald Had a Farm
  • Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
  • Wheels on the Bus
  • The Farmer in the Dell
  • Jingle Bells
  • Silent Night
  • We Wish You a Merry Christmas
  • Happy Birthday to You
  • Amazing Grace

So there is so much to talk about nursery rhymes without copyright.

Related quizzes about nursery rhymes :

1. Is the 'Baa Baa Black Sheep' copyright free?

πŸ‘✨ Baa Baa Black Sheep? Yep, it's totally copyright-free. πŸ˜ŽπŸ“œ First came out in 1744, and guess what? The copyright said bye-bye in 1923! So you're all clear to use it however you want, no copyright worries at all! πŸ™ŒπŸ’ƒ

2. Is ABC's 'Alphabet' Song copyright free?

Do you know that the original version of ABC's Alphabet Song is actually in the public domain? Yep, you heard me right! 🌟 It's not protected by copyright because it was published way back in the United States before 1923. But wait, there's a little twist! 🎡✨ There are like a gazillion different versions of this song, and guess what? πŸ€” Many of them have been copyrighted by their super-talented creators! πŸŽ€πŸ’– So, if you're thinking of using a specific version that's caught your heart, you gotta do a little detective work. πŸ•΅️‍♀️ You know, check the copyright status of that particular version before you go all artsy with it! But hey, here's the fun part! There are a bunch of free and totally royalty-free versions of ABC's Alphabet Song available online, just waiting for you to hit that play button! πŸŽ‰πŸŽΆ You can scout 'em out on platforms like YouTube, Audio Library. (you go, little ears!) And oh, before you think you're off the hook for crediting the genius behind these tunes, hold on a sec! πŸ™Œ It's still a fab idea to give a shoutout to the creator, 'cause, you know, credit where credit's due, right? 🎡🎀 You can totally rock this by slipping the creator's name into the description of your awesome video or project. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy! πŸ‹✍️

Example : - The Alphabet Song - Audio Library for Kids - Copyright Free :(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-vXK8MyjfA) 3. Is the 'Five little birds' nursery rhyme copyrighted?

Did you know that the OG version of the Five Little Birds nursery rhyme is hanging out in the public domain? Yup, it's strutting its stuff without any copyright shackles because it made its debut in the United States way back before 1870. But hold onto your feathers, there's a twist in this tale! 🎡✨ Now, here's the scoop: there's a whole flock of different versions of this rhyme, and get this – some of 'em are under copyright wings πŸ“œπŸ€! So, if you're planning to use a specific version that's got your heart all aflutter, you've gotta find out about the copyright status of that particular version. But wait, don't ruffle those feathers just yet! There's a sky full of free and totally royalty-free versions of the Five Little Birds nursery rhyme just waiting to serenade your ears. πŸŽ‰πŸŽΆ You can get them on platforms like YouTube, Audio Library as I said earlier.

4. Is the 'Bingo' nursery rhyme copyright-free?

You know the good ol' Bingo nursery rhyme? Well, guess what? 🎢🎀 It's like a free-spirited butterfly in the world of copyrights! πŸ¦‹✨ So, this rhyme doesn't have a known author, and it made it's debut looong before 1925. And, you know what that means? πŸ€” It's dancing its way in the public domain! πŸŽ‰ Anything published before 1925 is like an open book, ready for us to enjoy without those copyright strings attached as I said before. πŸ“–πŸ™Œ But hold on, let's not skip to the end of the song just yet! πŸŽ΅πŸ” While the original Bingo nursery rhyme is chilling in the copyright-free zone, there's a tiny twist in this musical tale. Some versions of Bingo have decided to strut their stuff under the copyright spotlight. πŸ•ΊπŸ“œ So check what version you wanna use.

5. Is the song 'Old MacDonald Had a Farm' copyrighted?

πŸŽΆπŸ’– Let's talk about a classic that's been ringing in our ears for generations - "Old MacDonald Had a Farm." πŸšœπŸ„ And guess what? This song is like the star of the copyright-free show in the United States! 🌟🎀 So, here you go.. "Old MacDonald Had a Farm" is as free as a bird 🐦 in terms of copyright protection. This catchy tune is believed to have sprouted way back in the 1700s and has been passed down through the generations like a musical heirloom. 🌾🎡 But wait, there's a teeny twist in this farmyard tale! 🐷🎀 Some versions of "Old MacDonald Had a Farm" have decided to put on a copyright cloak, just to keep things interesting. Take, for example, the 1927 recording by the talented Gid Tanner and his Skillet Lickers - that one's got its copyright cape on. 🦸‍♂️πŸ’Ό If you wanna use this particular version for your musical adventures, remember to tip your hat to the copyright holder and ask for their permission to play with it. πŸŽ©πŸ™
6. Who owns the copyright to 'The Wheels on the Bus' nursery rhyme?

🚌🎢 Let's check the whimsical world of "The Wheels on the Bus" - that catchy tune that's been keeping kiddos and grown-ups grooving for ages. πŸŒˆπŸ’ƒ

But hold onto your seatbelts because the copyright ride for this nursery rhyme is a bit different. The story begins with the earliest known publication of the lyrics back in December 1937, in a magazine called American Childhood. It was like a snapshot of the times, originally titled "The Bus," with lyrics that danced to "The wheels of the bus." Each verse talks about what was happening on the bus, unlike the now-familiar "all through the town" ending. Verna Hills (1898–1990) got the credit for these lyrics, but the puzzle pieces don't fit perfectly. πŸ“°✍️

See, here's where the plot thickens: the melody of "The Wheels on the Bus" is like a remix of the traditional British song "Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush" (published in 1805). And if that's not enough, it's like a musical cousin to the American folk song "Buffalo Gals" (published in 1844). πŸŽΌπŸƒ

Now, let's talk copyright conundrum! πŸ€” The foggy origins of both the lyrics and the melody have led folks to believe that "The Wheels on the Bus" is like a free-spirited bird in the public domain. However, there is no definitive answer to this question.

7. Is the Finger family song copyrighted??

So, you know that super catchy Finger Family song? Well, guess what? The original version is like a really old superstar—it's from way back in 1830! Can you believe it? 🎢 And because it's been around for so long, it's actually in the public domain. That means it's like a free spirit, not tied down by copyrights. But here's something to keep in mind: while the OG version is all open and free, there are some newer versions that have been given special copyrights by their creators. They might have added their own lyrics, changed the tune a bit, or gave it a fancy makeover.
So, as you sing, dance, and share these delightful melodies with the little ones in your life, let's keep in mind the importance of respecting copyrights. It's like adding a special note of gratitude to the harmonious symphony of creativity that surrounds us. πŸ™Œ Here's to keeping the melodies alive, respecting the creators, and passing down the joy of nursery rhymes for generations to come. 🎈🎡🌈 Good day my loving rhymees!!! :)

See where you can buy nursery rhymes to monetize in here.

Two beautiful cats are showing about what nursery rhymes are in the public domain poster

Post a Comment


Debbie said…
Great info on what nursery rhymes are in the public domain. I make printables and this is so helpful to know what is able to be used easily.