There was a crooked man
Who walked a crooked mile.
He found a crooked sixpence
Beside a crooked stile.
He bought a crooked cat
Which caught a crooked mouse,
And they all lived together
In a crooked little house.
And what is a stile? ...an arrangement
of steps allowing people but not animals to climb over a fence
This rhyme apparently originates from the time of Charles 1 and
the crooked man is commonly supposed to be
General Sir Alexander Leslie of Scotland. The General is one of
those who signed the Covenant which secured
religious and political freedom for Scotland. The 'crooked sixpence'
being Charles 1 and the 'crooked stile' being
the England/Scotland border. 'They all lived together in a little
crooked house' refers to the fact that the English
and Scots had come to an agreement.