I enjoyed reading the other week Albert Jack's 2010 paperback Pop Goes the Weasel, which explores interesting histories behind some 189 nursery rhymes, most of which I had heard of before. he also has a final section on traditional songs and anthems, for good measure.
I'm in my element with a book like this so I'm always surprised at how little I know. I suppose things are being discovered from time to time and take a while to get into books. So if you want to know who is Mary Quite Contrary or Georgie Porgie, why the cow jumped over the moon, this is the book for you.
So many of these rhymes refer back to the Wars of the roses and the Tudor and Stuart periods that I wondered if they could have been arranged chronologically but there is always some other theory on most of the rhymes and so that is not possible. Full of interest for the curious.