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Many a child who has expressed indifference has had the following verse spoken to them:

Don’t care was made to care,
Don’t care was hung:
Don’t care was put in a pot
And boiled till he was done.

What is its origin?

  • My mother (78) just told this to my father (87) over breakfast because he said he did t care if he messed up the crossword puzzle. She and her sisters were told it frequently by her late mother born 1913. Thank you for the background! – Carolyn Jul 24 '19 at 21:23
5

Looks like the author is unknown; but its origins appear to be mid-1800s London’s East End. The full rhyme is as follow:

Don’t care didn’t care,
Don’t care was wild:
Don’t care stole plum and pear
Like any beggar’s child.

Don’t care was made to care,
Don’t care was hung:
Don’t care was put in a pot
And boiled till he was done.

Don't care didn't care (idea)

  • Many thanks for this and for that link. So there's a published reference from 1848. I'd love to learn more about the background to the rhyme in London's East End. – user1618 Apr 22 '18 at 19:45
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    Glad to help! It was cool to see how far back this went. I hope you get more responses! =) – Christopher Klaus Apr 23 '18 at 13:22