Yankee Doodle
Yankee Doodle
Yankee Doodle
Yankee Doodle
Yankee Doodle
Yankee Doodle
Yankee Doodle

starYankee Doodle

Yankee Doodle came to town,
A-ridin' on a pony;
He stuck a feather in his hat
And called it macaroni.

Yankee Doodle keep it up,
Yankee Doodle Dandy;
Mind the music and the steps
And with the girls be handy.

Father and I went down to camp,
Along with Cap'n Goodwin;
The men and boys all stood around
As thick as hasty puddin'.

Yankee Doodle keep it up,
Yankee Doodle Dandy;
Mind the music and the steps
And with the girls be handy


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"Yankee Doodle"

These words are perhaps more familiar to Americans than any other song lyric
from the time of the Revolution. But what is a "Yankee Doodle"? And why
would anyone call a feather "macaroni"? Digging around in the past to uncover
the meaning of old names and expressions is fun, and it can give us a glimpse of what people said and did in olden days.


The name Yankee has been traced back to colonial times. Early Dutch settlers in New Amsterdam (renamed New York by the British in 1664) used the tern in a
rather impolite way to refer to the English-speaking colonists, who the Dutch though were boorish and uncultured. They called such a person "Jahnke," as we might call someone we don't know "Jack" or "Buddy". John (pronounced YAHN)
is the Dutch was of saying John, and the "ke" on the end is their way of changing John to Johnny.

Later on, in the 1700s, the British, who by that time had taken over New York from the Dutch, used the word "doodle" to refer to uneducated farmers and backwoodsmen who came into the big city. Today some might call them hicks or hillbillies. So to call someone "Jahnke Doodle" was to call him an illiterate, illmannered country bumpkin. Not a very nice name!

The Macaroni Club consisted of young, wealthy British gentlemen who traveled
to France and Italy and adopted the ostentatious and flamboyant fashions
popular in those countries during the eighteenth century. The Macaronis, not members of a true club but rather a new generation of continental society, were often ridiculed by the British establishment.
from: www.jolique.com/social_status/yankee_doodle.htm
The joke was that a colonial—a Yankee "dandy"—would stick a feather in his tricorne or coonskin cap and think himself as fashionable as any man la mode in Paris or Rome.
from: www.yourdictionary.com/library/yankee.html


Midi: Yankee Doodle
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