“Hunt the Squirrel”


"Hunt the squirrel through the wood, I lost him, I found him; I have a little dog at home, He won't bite you, He won't bite you, And he *will* bite you."


Botkin, following Newell, lumps this with "Atisket, Atasket." There is, however, little contact in the lyrics; if they are connected, it is because both are used as platforms for the "drop glove" playparty game. For details, see the notes on "Atisket, Atasket (I Sent a Letter to My Love)."

Linscott has still a different version, opening with the verse "Lucy Locket lost her pocket, Kitty Fisher found it, There was not a penny in it, only ribbon 'round it." This also occurs in nursery rhymes (see Baring-Gould-MotherGoose #279, p. 165, "(Lucy Locket lost her pocket)"). But the second verse is the "I wrote a letter to my love," and the third is "I have a little dog at home" -- plus she says the game is "Hunt the Squirrel." So I file the piece here. Possibly it should be with "Atisket, Atasket (I Sent a Letter to My Love)." Or maybe the two should be lumped.... - RBW

Verse 1 of Linscott is the same as Opie-Oxford2 312, "Lucy Locket" (earliest date in Opie-Oxford2 is 1842). - BS

This is also the name of an English country dance. - PJS

Cross references


  1. Linscott, pp. 37-38, "Lucy Locket" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. Botkin-AmFolklr, p. 806, "Hunt the Squirrel (Itisket, Itasket)" (1 text)
  3. ST BAF806 (Full)
  4. BI, BAF806


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1939 (Linscott)
Found in: US(NE)