Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Original Title: The Star
Author: Jane Taylor

Origin and History

The creation of the world-famous line, “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star,” is credited to a poet named Jane Taylor (1783–1824). Indeed, Jane Taylor put together these famous lines and wonderful pacing to create a well-known lullaby that is still recited today over cribs. This poem, turned lullaby, would have also been heard from mothers’ voices, cradling their swaddling infants at night. Jane Taylor created the poem “The Star,” which was part of her 1806 work, Rhymes for the Nursery.

Regarding some interesting history tied to the poem, the first two lines of the five-line stanza have adaptations in the form of both songs and written works. Author Lewis Carroll had his infamous character, the Mad Hatter, twist the lines of this famous poem in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. And other writers and novelists like Frederick Marryat and Mildred J. Hill created different versions of the first two stanzas of “The Star” in their works—Marryat in his novel and Hill in her sheet music. Indeed, a specific piece of French music, which dates back to 1761, is directly associated with “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. And this French melody, adapted to fit the lines of Taylor’s poem, is still heard today in musical form.

The most interesting thing about Taylor’s poem is that it remains a catchy tune that will continue to captivate lovers of poetry and music, all while causing infants and young children to nod off to sleep—celestial bodies captivating their potential dream states.

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star Lyrics

“Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are.
Up above the world so high,
Like a diamond in the sky.

When the blazing sun is gone,
When he nothing shines upon,
Then you show your little light,
Twinkle, twinkle, all the night.

Then the traveller in the dark,
Thank you for your tiny spark,
He could not see which way to go,
If you did not twinkle so.

In the dark blue sky you keep,
And often through my curtains peep,
For you never shut your eye,
‘Till the sun is in the sky.

As your bright and tiny spark,
Lights the traveller in the dark.
Though I know not what you are,
Twinkle, twinkle, little star.

Twinkle, twinkle, little star.
How I wonder what you are.
Up above the world so high,
Like a diamond in the sky.

Twinkle, twinkle, little star.
How I wonder what you are.
How I wonder what you are.”

The Star by Jane Taylor, 1806

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Who wrote “twinkle, twinkle little star?”
Jane Taylor

‒ Jane Taylor October 10, 2022

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