Miss Mary Mack

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Miss Mary Mack Image

“Miss Mary Mack” (“Mary Mack”) is a clapping game played by children in English-speaking countries. It is known in various parts of the United States, Australia, Canada, and in New Zealand and has been called “the most common hand-clapping game in the English-speaking world”.

In the game, two children stand or sit opposite to each other, and clap hands in time to a rhyming song.

 

"Miss Mary Mack" Lyrics


Various versions of the song exist; a common version goes:

Miss Mary Mack, Mack, Mack
All dressed in black, black, black
With silver buttons, buttons, buttons [butt’ns]
All down her back, back, back.
(She could not read, read, read
She could not write, write, write,
But she could smoke, smoke, smoke
Her father’s, pipe, pipe, pipe)
She asked her mother, mother, mother
for fifty cents, cents, cents
To see the elephants, elephants, elephants (or hippos)
Jump the fence, fence, fence.
They jumped so high, high, high
they reached the sky, sky, sky
And didn’t come back, back, back
Till the 4th of July, ‘ly, ‘ly!
July can’t walk, walk, walk
July can’t talk, talk, talk
July can’t eat, eat, eat
With a knife and fork, fork, fork).
She asked her mother, mother, mother
For 5 cents more, more, more
To see the elephants, elephants, elephants
Jump over the door, door, door.
They jumped so low, low, low
They stubbed their toe, toe, toe
And that was the end, end, end,
Of the elephant show, show, show!

In some variations, Mary Mack asks her mother for fifteen cents rather than fifty.

Clap

A common version of the accompanying clap is as follows:

&: Arms across chest
4: Pat thighs
&: Clap hands
1: Clap right palms with partner
&: Clap left palms with partner
2: Clap both palms with partner

Another version:

&: One palm up, one palm down
4: Clap both partners hands
&: Clap own hands
1: Cross arms to chest
2: Slap thighs
3: Clap own hands

Another Version: Pat thighs clap hands clap partners right hand clap hands clap partners left hand clap hands clap both partners hands clap hands repeat Another Version:

&: One palm up, one palm down
1: Clap both partners hands
&: Reverse hands
2: Clap both partners hands
&: Clap own hands
4: clap partners right hand
&: clap hands
5: clap partners left hand
&: clap hands
6: clap partners right hand
&: clap hands
repeat

"Miss Mary Mack" Youtube Videos


 

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