Je te tiens par la barbichette (also known as La barbichette) is a traditional French song and game for kids that may have been published towards the end of the 19th century.
About the song
The name of the song comes from the fact that the chin, by which the two opponents hold each other, is the part of the face on which the barbichette (small goatee).
The Barbichette game
The game of the goatee is a childish game that children play in pairs.
It consists in placing themselves face to face, looking into each other's eyes, holding each other's chin with their hands, and singing the rhyme together.
Then, as the lyrics of the song tell us, the goal of the game is to stay in this posture as long as possible without the slightest laugh or smile.
The first one to give in will have lost, and his opponent will be able to give him a little slap on the cheek.
The mousquetaire's goatee
There are several styles of barbichettes (or goatees). The Mousquetaire is a small pointed goatee with a thin English-style moustache, like the one worn by the famous French musketeers.
Lyrics, music, free download... let's learn more about the popular song:
The lyrics in French
The original song of La Barbichette has 1 verse.
Je te tiens,
Tu me tiens
Par la barbichette
De nous deux
Aura une claquette.
Translation of the lyrics into English
Here is an approximative translation into English:
I hold you,
You hold me
By the (little) beard
The first one
Of the two of us
Will get a (little) slap.
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