Hot Cockles was the favourite Christmas family game, reveals 1801 book

December 24th, 2008 - 2:52 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Dec 24 (ANI): A game called Hot Cockles, which involved placing your head in someone’’s lap while guessing who was hitting you from behind, used to be a hit with families at Christmas 200 years ago, reveals a book from 1801.

Hot Cockles, which was a variation of the classic Blind Man’’s Buff, was mentioned in the book “Sports and Pastimes”, written by the author and artist Joseph Strutt, which was recently found in a house in Staffordshire.

The book, which lifts the lid on the famous games of the day that families and friends would play at parties, is due to be auctioned next month.

It revealed that rather than staring at the television or playing on the latest games console, kids at that time used to entertain themselves with more traditional games, many of which have long been forgotten with the advances in technology.

Strutt’’s traditional games included names such as Baste the Bear, Duck and Drake and Puss in the Corner, which involved four children, each standing in the corner of a room with another standing in the middle and those at the corners had to swap positions before the middle one taking their place.

Other games include Hippas, a Greek game involving “one person riding upon the shoulders of another, as upon a horse,” Hunt the Fox, where one boy was allowed to run a certain distance before having to return without anyone catching him.

The book, being sold by the Derby-based auctioneers Hansons, is expected to fetch upwards of 200 pounds when auctioned on January 21, reports The Telegraph.

Charles Hanson, the auctioneer, who is handling the sale of Strutts book, said it offered a remarkable insight into a long-lost age of childhood.

“Sports and Pastimes” was Strutts most popular book and was written more than three decades before the working and middle classes were granted the vote, it was largely divided along social lines. (ANI)

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