The Fifth Little Pig


Why did the Little Pig cry “wee, wee, wee” all the way home? This is the sort of question that keeps me up at night. I have wondered for years what possessed the little pig to cry “wee! wee! wee!” all the way home. Turns out, there’s a reasonable explanation for it.

It seems that in the 1880 Little Folks Series book The History of the Five Little Pigs, there were – reasonably enough – five little pigs, the children of one Mrs. Pig. There is no accounting of the father of these little pigs, but the eldest son in the stories is called Mr. Pig. This would not have been nearly as uncomfortable in 1880 as it is in 2014.

Some of these pigs were wise; some of them were foolish. The author of this particular History does not speculate as to why this is; he simply seems to accept without question that it is the case and that such is natural. Nineteenth-century literature is chock full of prejudices such as this, especially as regards pigs, so this should come as little surprise. Then was not an enlightened time and people thought nothing of passing prejudicial judgment on pigs.

 It remains unclear as to whether or not charges were pressed against Farmer Grumpey.

The fifth and youngest Little Pig, at least according to this History, was particularly foolish. It seems the Little Pigs and Mrs. Pig lived in the vicinity of one Farmer Grumpey. It further seems that Farmer Grumpey was quite dictatorial as regards the administration of the land of his farm and he was loathe to allow anyone other than himself (and, perhaps, Mrs. Grumpey and any little Grumpeys that there might have been – the History’s author is silent as to whether or not Farmer Grumpey and Old Bachelor Grumpey are the same individual) fish on his part of the river.

One day, the Fifth Little Pig decided to engage in various outdoor activities and piscatorian pursuits, and although he had been warned not to fish on Farmer Gumpey’s holdings, this foolish (if we are to accept the opinion of the author of the History) pig ignored the warnings and presumably any posted signs that Farmer Grumpey might have had the foresight to post and went fishing.

The fishing that day was good, and the foolish Little Pig soon landed a large fish. However, he was discovered by Farmer Grumpey before making good his escape and was subsequently beaten with what the History’s author describes as “a great whip.”

Though the foolish Little Pig abandoned his fish and ran, Farmer Grumpey succeeded in catching him and,as the account reports, “laid his whip over his back for some time.”

As a result, the Little Pig ran off, crying “Wee, wee, wee,” all the way home. It remains unclear as to whether or not charges were pressed against Farmer Grumpey.

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