The Project Gutenberg eBook of Entertainments for Home, Church and School

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Title: Entertainments for Home, Church and School

Author: Frederica Seeger

Release date: September 1, 2004 [eBook #6416]
Most recently updated: December 29, 2020

Language: English


Produced by Joshua Hutchinson, Anne Soulard, Charles Franks

and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team.





CHAPTER I—HOUSEHOLD GAMES AND AMUSEMENTS Going Shopping, Hit or Miss, Game of Rhymes, Most Improbable Story, Animated Art, Guessing Character, Tongue Twisters.

CHAPTER II—HOUSEHOLD GAMES AND AMUSEMENTS French Rhymes, Ant and Cricket, A Spoonful of Fun, How, When and Where, Grandfather's Trunk, Predicaments, Auction, Beast, Bird or Fish, Rotating Globe, etc.
CHAPTER III—HOUSEHOLD GAMES AND AMUSEMENTS Flags of All Nations, Game of Words, Prince of India, Exchange, Shadow Buff, Old Family Coach, The Tailless Donkey.
CHAPTER IV—HOUSEHOLD GAMES AND AMUSEMENTS Magic Music, Cushion Dance, Animal Blind Man's Buff, Musical Instruments, My Lady's Toilet, Going to Jerusalem.
CHAPTER V—HOUSEHOLD GAMES AND AMUSEMENTS Tortoise, Lemon Pig, Seasick Passengers, Enchanted Raisins, Family Giant, Animated Telescope, etc.
CHAPTER VI—HOUSEHOLD GAMES AND AMUSEMENTS The What Do You Think, Knight of the Whistle, "Can Do Little," Throwing Light.
CHAPTER VII—CHURCH AND SCHOOL SOCIALS Charades, "Cicero," "Attenuate," Suggested Words, "Metaphysician," Charades on the Grecian Islands.
CHAPTER VIII—CHURCH AND SCHOOL SOCIALS Living Pictures, Tableaux, Dignity and Impudence, Sailor's Farewell, Home Again, Various Tableaux.
CHAPTER IX—CHURCH AND SCHOOL SOCIALS Wax Works Gallery, Mrs. Jarley's Collection, Chinese Giant, Two-Headed Girl, Captain Kidd, Celebrated Dwarf, Yankee Cannibal, etc.
CHAPTER X—CHURCH AND SCHOOL SOCIALS Art Exhibitions, List of Exhibitors, "Artists," Curiosities, Explanations, Suggestions.
CHAPTER XI—OPTICAL ILLUSIONS Raising the Ghost, Magic Lantern Pictures, Phantasmagoria, Chinese Shadows, Wonderful Mirror, Multiplied Money.
CHAPTER XII—TABLE GAMES FOR ADULTS Dominoes, Backgammon, Checkers, Jenkins, Zoo, Stray Syllables, Chess.
CHAPTER XIII—OUTDOOR GAMES FOR ADULTS Lawn Tennis, Polo, Hockey, Golf, Archery, Ring Toss, Lawn Bowls.
CHAPTER XIV—HOLIDAY GAMES AND AMUSEMENTS New Years, Lincoln's Day, Valentine Party, Easter Egg Party, Hallowe'en Games, Flag Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas.
CHAPTER XV—OUTDOOR GAMES FOR GIRLS Basket Ball, Box Ball, Guess Ball, Target Ball, String Ball.
CHAPTER XVI—PASTIMES FOR CHILDREN Sun Dial, Mother, May I Play? Blind Man's Buff, Tug of War, Various Ball Games.
CHAPTER XVII—INDOOR GAMES FOR YOUNG CHILDREN Patch Work, Peanut Game, Soap Bubbles, Candy Pulls, Cook and Peas, Magic Music, Zoology.
CHAPTER XVIII—OUTDOOR GAMES FOR YOUNG CHILDREN Bean Bag Games, Skipping the Rope, Various Tag Games, Crossing the Brook.
CHAPTER XIX—SINGING GAMES FOR CHILDREN Moon and Stars, Bologna Man, Orchestra, Jack Be Nimble, Oats, Peas, Beans, Farmer in the Dell, London Bridge, etc.
CHAPTER XX—GAMES OF ARITHMETIC Thought Numbers, Mystical Nine, Magic Hundred, King and Counselor, Horse Shoe Nails, Dinner Party Puzzle, Baskets and Stones, etc.
CHAPTER XXI—ONE HUNDRED CONUNDRUMS Witty Questions, Facetious Puzzles, Ready Answers, Entertaining Play Upon Words.


Games are meant to amuse, but in addition to amusing, a good game, played in the right spirit, may have great educational value.

Now, this is distinctly a book of games and amusements.

There are games for indoors, scores of them, while there are other scores that can be enjoyed only in the open.

When young folks, and older folks, too, for that matter, meet for a pleasant evening, it is rather depressing to have them sit solemnly on stiff chairs in the company room and stare helplessly at one another, like folks awaiting a funeral service.

Now, if there is present, and there usually is, a bright girl, who knows the games in this book, and she starts in to "get the ball a-rolling," all will soon be enjoying themselves better than if they were watching a three-ring circus. And then the volleys of wholesome laughter that will roll out—why, they will be better for the digestion than all the medicines of all the doctors.

It will be noticed that some of the outdoor games, and others devised for indoors, require some apparatus, like tennis and croquet, or back-gammon boards and magic lanterns, but the majority need only the company, and—let it be added—the disposition to have a good time.

Within the covers of "Entertainments for Home, Church, and School," you will find condensed and clearly set forth the best of a library of books on amusements.





A lively game of "talk and touch." The company is seated in a circle, and one who understands the game commences by saying to his neighbor at the right:

"I have been shopping."

"What did you buy?" is the required response.

"A dress," "a book," "some flowers," "a pencil"—whatever the first speaker wishes, provided always that he can, in pronouncing the word, touch the object mentioned. Then the second player addresses his neighbor in similar manner, and so on around the circle until the secret of the game is discovered by all.

Whoever mentions an object without touching it, or names one that has already been given, pays a forfeit.


This feat is a very amusing one, and is performed as follows: Two persons kneel on the ground, facing each other. Each holds in his left hand a candle in a candlestick, at the same time grasping his right foot in his right hand. This position compels him to balance himself on his left knee. One of the candles is lighted; the other is not. The holders are required to light the unlighted candle from the lighted one. The conditions are simple enough, but one would hardly believe how often the performers will roll over on the floor before they succeed in lighting the candle. It will be found desirable to spread a newspaper on the floor between the combatants. Many spots of candle-grease will thus be intercepted, and the peace of mind of the lady of the house proportionately spared.


Great amusement is excited by this game when played in the presence of a company of guests. Spread a sheet upon the floor and place two chairs upon it. Seat two of the party in the chairs within reach of each other and blindfold them. Give each a saucer of cracker or bread crumbs and a spoon, then request them to feed each other. The frantic efforts of each victim to reach his fellow sufferer's mouth is truly absurd—the crumbs finding lodgment in the hair, ears and neck much oftener than the mouth. Sometimes bibs are fastened around the necks of the victims for protection.


The company is divided into two equal parts and blank cards and pencils are distributed. One side writes questions on any subject desired, while the other prepares in like manner a set of haphazard answers. The question cards are then collected and distributed to the players on the other side, while their answer are divided among the questioners. The leader holding a question then reads it aloud, the first player on the other side reading the answer he holds. Some of the answers are highly amusing.


A variation of the former game. The game is begun by a young lady or gentleman speaking a single line, to which the next nearest on the left must respond with another line to rhyme with the first. The next player gives a new line, of the same length, and the fourth supplies a rhyme in turn, and so on. The game is provocative of any amount of fun and nonsense. A sample may be given:

1st Player.—I think I see a brindle cow. 2d Player.—It's nothing but your dad's bow-wow. 3rd. Player.—He is chasing our black Tommy cat. 4th Player.—Poor puss had best get out of that, etc.

Any amount of nonsense may be indulged in a game of this sort, within proper limits. Clever players can easily give the game a most interesting turn and provoke rhymes that are original and witty. Thus, a subject once started, every phase of it may be touched upon before the round closes.


The players are seated in a circle and are provided with pencils and paper. It is then announced that this is a competition, and that the one who writes the most improbable story in fifteen minutes wins a prize. The allotted time being up, the papers are collected and re-distributed so that each players receives another player's story. The stories are then read aloud and a committee decides which is the most improbable story. A prize is usually given the writer of this.


A picture is selected showing a group of individuals and portraying some historical incident or event illustrative of the affairs of every-day life. The performers make up, each one to represent some character in the picture. Out of their number some one is chosen to act as stage manager and he poses the figures. Two rooms with folding-doors, or one room divided by a curtain, are required for this representation. A reflection, or footlight, will enhance the beauty of the picture.


One of the party leaves the room, while the others decide upon some character, real or fictitious. The absentee is then recalled, and each in turn asks him a question referring to the character he has been elected to represent. When he guesses his identity, the player whose question has thrown the most light upon the subject has to go from the room.

For example: A goes from the room, and the company decides that he shall represent King Henry VIII. When he enters, No. 1 asks: "Which one of your wives did you love best?" No. 2 says: "Do you approve of a man marrying his deceased brother's wife?" No. 3 adds: "Were you very sorry your brother died?" etc., while A, after guessing various names, is led by some question to guess correctly, and the fortunate questioner is consequently sent from the room to have a new character assigned him in turn.


One-half the company is blindfolded; these are then seated in such a way that each has a vacant chair at his right hand. The other half of the players gather in the middle of the room. This is done silently. The unblindfolded players will each one take one of the empty seats next to those who are blindfolded. When requested to speak or sing they must do so. It is permissible to disguise the voice. The blindfolded neighbor must guess who is speaking or singing. The bandages are not taken off until the wearer has guessed correctly the name of the person at his right. When he guesses correctly, the one whose name was guessed is blindfolded and takes the guesser's place.

The leader gives a signal, and the players who are unblindfolded walk softly to a vacant chair. The leader then plays a familiar air on an instrument, and says, "sing!" All must sing until he suddenly stops playing. The guessing goes on as before until the leader decides to stop it.


The amusing game of tongue-twisters is played thus: The leader gives out a sentence (one of the following), and each repeats it in turn, any player who gets tangled up in the pronunciation having to pay forfeit.

A haddock! a haddock! a black-spotted haddock, a black spot on the black back of the black-spotted haddock.

She sells sea shells.

She stood at the door of Mr. Smith's fish-sauce shop, welcoming him in.

The sea ceaseth and it sufficeth us.

Six thick thistle sticks.

The flesh of freshly fried flying fish.

A growing gleam glowing green. I saw Esau kissing Kate, the fact we all three saw, I saw Esau, he saw me, and she saw I saw Esau.

Swan swam over the sea; swim, swan, swim; Swan swam back again; well swum, Swan.

You snuff ship snuff, I snuff box snuff.

The bleak breeze blighted the bright broom blossoms.

High roller, low roller, rower.

Oliver Oglethorp ogled an owl and oyster. Did Oliver Oglethorp ogle an owl and oyster? If Oliver Oglethorp ogled an owl and oyster, where are the owl and oyster Oliver Oglethorp ogled?

Hobbs meets Snobbs and Nobbs; Hobbs bobs to Snobbs and Nobbs; Hobbs nobs with Snobbs and robs Nobbs' fob. "That is," says Nobbs, "the worse for Hobbs' jobs," and Snobbs sobs.

Susan shines shoes and socks; socks and shoes shine Susan. She ceaseth shining shoes and socks, for shoes and socks shocks Susan.

Robert Royley rolled a round roll round; a round roll Robert Rowley rolled round. Where rolled the round roll Robert Rowley rolled round?

Strict, strong Stephen Stringer snared slickly six sickly, silky snakes.
The Leith police dismisseth us.

She sun shines upon shop signs.




The players sit around the room in a circle. The leader then holds a button between his hands, with the palms pressed together, so as to hide it. He goes around the circle, passing his hand between those of the players. As he does this, he says: "Hold fast to what I give you." He is careful not to let the players see into whose hands he passed the button. The circuit having been made, the leader says to the first player: "Button, button, who has the button?" The one questioned must answer, naming some one whom he thinks has it. So it continues until all have had a turn at answering the same question. Then the leader says: "Button, button, rise!" The button holder must do this.


Each member of the company writes upon a slip of paper two words that rhyme. These are collected by one player and read aloud, and as they are read everybody writes them down upon new papers. Five or ten minutes being allowed, each player must write a poem introducing all the rhyming words in their original pairs. At the expiration of the given time the lines are read aloud. Suppose the words given are "man and than," "drops and copse," "went and intent," etc., these are easily framed into something like this:

Once on a time a brooklet drops, With splash and clash, through a shady copse; One day there chanced to pass a man, Who, deeming water better than Cider, down by the brooklet went, To dip some up was his intent.

Of course, the result is nonsense, but it is pleasant nonsense, and may be kept up indefinitely, to the entertainment of the participants.


The players are each provided with a slip of paper and a pencil. Each must write the name of some gentleman (who is known to the party), turn down the end of the paper on which the name is written, and pass the paper to the next neighbor. All must then write the name of some lady (also known), then change the papers again and write "where they met," "what he said," "what she said," "what the world said," and "the consequences," always passing the papers on. When all are written, each player must then read his paper.

Mr. Jones . . . . . . . . . And Miss Smith . . . . . . . . . Met on a roof . . . . . . . . . He said, "I trust you are not afraid." She said, "Not while you are here." World said, "It's a match." Consequences, "He sailed for Africa next morning," etc.


One of the company being appointed to represent the Cricket, seats himself in the midst of the other players, who are the Ants, and writes upon a piece of paper the name of a certain grain, whatever kind he pleases. He then addresses the first Ant: "My dear neighbor, I am very hungry, and I have come to you for aid. What will you give me!" "A grain of rice, a kernel of corn, a worm," etc., replies the Ant, as he sees fit. The Cricket asks each in turn, and if one of them announces as his gift the word already written upon the paper, the Cricket declares himself satisfied and changes places with the Ant.


This is a German game. One of the players goes into the middle of a ring formed by the other players. He is blindfolded and has a large, wooden spoon for a wand. The players join hands and dance about him. There may be music, if it be so desired. When the signal is given to stop, all must stand still. The blindfolded one touches one of the players with his hand and tries to guess his identity. If he guesses correctly, that player must take his place. Stooping, kneeling, or tiptoeing may be resorted to, to conceal the identity of the players.


Though this is a very old game, it is well worth the playing. The leader asks each player in turn, "What is my thought like?" The one questioned gives any answer he desires. Each player is asked in turn and a list is kept of the replies. Finally the leader tells what his thought was, and asks each player in what way it resembles the thing he, or she, likened it to.


Each player receives a pencil and paper and takes a seat as one of the circle of players. The left-hand neighbor is the subject for his right-hand neighbor's biographical sketch. Any absurd happening will do, the more ridiculous the biography, the better. The wittiest one calls for a prize.


Certain cities have been nick-named, as Chicago, the Windy City; Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, etc. The hostess requests her guests to wear something suggestive of the nickname of the city represented. Each guest writes on a piece of paper what cities he supposes the other guests are representing. A half hour is allowed, when a prize is awarded the one who has given the largest number of guesses correctly.


One member of the company, leaving the room, a word admitting of more than one interpretation is chosen by the others. On his return, he asks each in succession, "How do you like it?" The player questioned being required to give an appropriate answer. He then inquires in similar manner, "When do you like it," and if the answer to that question still gives him no clue, proceeds to ask, "Where do you like it?"

When he at last discovers the word, the person whose answer has furnished him with the most information, must in turn leave the room and become the questioner.

We will suppose the word chosen to be "rain," which can also be taken as "reign" or "rein." The question, "How do you like it?" receives the answers, "tight," "heavy," "short," "warm," etc.

The question, "When do you like it?", "in summer," "when I am driving," "in the nineteenth century," etc.

"Where do you like it?", "in the United States," "on a horse," "in the sky," etc.


A great game for young folks of a winter evening. The company being seated in a circle, somebody begins by saying, for instance:

No. 1. "I pack my grandfather's trunk with a pair of spectacles."

No. 2. "I pack my grandfather's trunk with a pair of spectacles and a silk hat." No. 3. "I pack my grandfather's trunk with a pair of spectacles, a silk hat and a dime novel." And so on, each person repeating all the articles already mentioned, besides adding a new one.

If any one fails to repeat the list correctly, he drops out of the game, which is continued until the contents of the trunk are unanimously declared too numerous to remember.


Location is geographical in character. Two captains are chosen. They choose sides until the party is equally divided. One captain begins the game by calling the name of a city. He then counts thirty. Before he has finished counting, his opposite opponent must tell where the city is located. If his answer be correct, he in turn names a place, and the second player in the opposite row must locate it before he counts thirty. Should any player fail to answer before thirty is counted, or answer incorrectly, he or she must drop out. When there is only one player left on either side, that one gets the prize.


Predicaments are thought out. The more ridiculous they are the better. They are written on sheets of paper. Each person has to write his idea of the best way out of a predicament. Then the papers are collected and read. Prizes are given if the hostess so desires.


Provide as many small, square cards as there are guests; also several pairs of scissors. The party seats itself in a circle. The cards and scissors are given out. Then each player cuts his card twice across, so as to make four pieces. The straight cuts must intersect each other. After the first cut, the pieces must be held together until the second cut has been made.

A player mixes his pieces and passes them to his right-hand neighbor. When the leader gives the signal, all the players put together the four pieces they have. The one who first succeeds calls out "ready." Then all stop and pass the cards on again. The successful player is given a mark on a tally card. The game goes on until a half hour has passed. The person receiving the most marks is entitled to a prize, or may become the leader, as preferred.


The leader for this game must have a contagious laugh. He throws a handkerchief into the air; when he does this, all must laugh heartily, until the handkerchief lies upon the ground, then the laughing must stop immediately. The player laughing after the handkerchief touches the ground is "out." This also happens to the one laughing too soon. The one left alone at last is the winner, and may become leader.


Each player in the party is given two slips of paper and a pencil. On one slip he writes a question. This may be serious or absurd, as he wishes. On another paper he writes a word, this being a noun—either proper or common. The questions being mixed are distributed—the words likewise. The players write verses answering the questions and containing the words received.


Needed: Twenty, or more, packages, wrapped in paper.

Auction may be made a very merry game. It depends upon the auctioneer, however, to make the sales interesting; any articles may be chosen, though dolls, Teddy bears, etc., are suggested. The articles are catalogued. They are paid for with the beans given to the players with the catalogues.


The players sit round in a circle, and one player, who is "it," points to some one, and says either "beast," "bird," or "fish." He then counts ten as quickly as possible. The person pointed to must name some "beast," "bird," or "fish" (whichever he was asked), before ten is reached. If he fails he must give a forfeit.


When you next chance to eat an egg for breakfast, do not fail to try the following experiment. It is one which always succeeds, and is productive of much amusement to the company.

Moisten slightly with water the rim of your plate, and in the center paint with the yolk of the egg a sun with golden rays. By the aid of this simple apparatus, you will be in a position to illustrate, so clearly that a child can comprehend it, the double movement of the earth, which revolves simultaneously round the sun and on its own axis.

All that you have to do is to place the empty half-shell of your egg on the rim of the plate, and keeping this latter duly sloped, by a slight movement of the wrist as may be needful, you will see the eggshell begin to revolve rapidly on its own axis, at the same time traveling round the plate. It is hardly necessary to remark that the egg-shell will not travel uphill, and the plate must therefore be gradually shifted round, as well as sloped, so that the shell may always have an inch or two of descending plane before it.

The slight cohesion caused by the water which moistens the plate counteracts the centrifugal force and so prevents the eggshell falling off the edge of the plate.


Pencil and paper having been given the players, each writes a piece of advice and folds his paper. He passes it to his neighbor, who before opening it, tells whether he thinks the advice good or bad. If he guesses correctly, he scores a point. The game goes on this way, each at the table taking a turn, when new advices are written and passed along. This is done as many times as the hostess desires. The one getting the most points is winner.


Each player receives a pencil and paper. He is then told to make as many words as he can from a given word of fifteen letters, or more. It is surprising how many words can be thus made. The winner is the one fashioning the greatest number of words. A book is given him as a prize.




You can learn the colors of the flags of all nations by referring to a large dictionary, or to a book on flags. The flags are drawn with colored crayons, or painted in water colors, on a large water-color card, or a sheet of water-color paper. Large cards with numbers down the sides are given to each player, with a pencil. The card of flags is then hung where all can see it, and half an hour is allowed for all to guess the countries to which the flags belong. The answers are written on the individual cards, and the papers are signed with the names of the players.

A prize is given to the player who has the greatest number of correct answers.


The players, each of whom is supplied with paper and pencil, are divided equally into two sides, and the leader, having selected a word, suppose "notwithstanding," each party sets to work to see how many different words they can make of the same letters. (Thus from the word above suggested may be made "not, with, stand, standing, gin, ton, to, wig, wit, his, twit, tan, has, had, an, nod, tow, this, sat, that, sit, sin, tin, wink, what, who, wish, win, wan, won," and probably a host of others.) A scrutiny is then taken, all words common to both parties being struck out. The remainder are then compared, and the victory is adjudged to the one having the largest number of words.


This is played by each person drawing, say, twenty letters haphazard, and trying to form them into a phrase or sentence, the palm of merit being awarded to the player who, at the same time, produces the most coherent phrase, and also succeeds in using the greatest proportion of the letters assigned to him.


This is a very funny game if the ringmaster keeps up a running fire of witty remarks. He stands in the circle of animals—otherwise guests—and, whip in hand, shows off his animals, and their tricks, singly, and in groups. The lion roars, as well as performs; the dog barks, and performs the tricks he is told to show off; the canary warbles its song; the bee buzzes; the donkey brays, balks and kicks, etc. At the end of the performance there is a grand circus parade, with music.


The players are numbered from one upward.

The leader stands in front of them and says: "The Prince of India has lost his pearl. Did you find it, number seven?" Upon this, number 7 replies, jumping to his feet quickly:

"I, sir, I?"

The leader replies, "Yes, you, sir!"

Number 7 says: "Not I, sir!"

Leader: "Who then, sir, if not you?"

Number 7: "Number 4, sir."

Number 4 jumps up, and says: "What, sir? I, I?"

Leader: "Yes, sir; you, you."

Number 4: "Not I, not I, sir."'

Leader: "Who then, sir?"

Number 4: "Number 2, sir."'

Then number 2 jumps to his feet.

This goes on until the leader reaches the last one in the circle. If he can repeat again "The Prince of India has lost his pearl," before this one can jump to his feet, they exchange places.


A blindfolded player stands in the center; the others are seated about him in a circle. Each one is numbered. The blindfolded player calls out two numbers, whereupon the players bearing those numbers exchange places, the blindfolded player trying meanwhile either to catch one of the players or to secure one of the chairs. Any player so caught must yield his chair to the catcher. No player may go outside of the circle formed by the chairs.


All the players stand in a circle holding a long cord, which forms an endless band upon which a ring has been slipped before it was joined at the ends. This ring is passed rapidly from one player to another—always on the cord and concealed by the hand—while somebody in the center endeavors to seize the hands of the person who holds it, who, when actually caught, takes his place within the circle.

If the circle is very large, two rings may be slipped upon the cord, and two players placed in the center together.

A small key may be used instead of a ring, while still another variation is to have the concealed object a small whistle with a ring attached. When this is adopted, an amusing phase of the game is to secretly attach a string to the whistle and fasten this to the back of the player in the center by means of a bent pin at the other end of the string. Then while feigning to pass the whistle from hand to hand, it is occasionally seized and blown upon by some one in the ring, toward whom the victim is at that moment turning his back, causing that individual to be greatly puzzled.


A sheet being stretched across one end of the room, one of the players being seated upon a low stool facing it, and with his eyes fixed upon it. The only light in the room must be a lamp placed upon a table in the center of the room. Between this lamp and the person on the stool, the players pass in succession, their shadows being thrown upon the sheet in strong relief. The victim of the moment endeavors to identify the other players by their respective shadows, and if he succeeds the detected party must take his place.

It is allowable to make detection as difficult as possible by means of any available disguise that does not conceal the whole person, any grimacing, contortion of form, etc.


A sheet is fastened up between two doors. Holes are cut in it, and some of the party go behind the sheet and stand with their eyes at the holes, while the others must guess to whom the eyes belong. Failing to guess correctly, they must give a forfeit.


An amusing game, at which any size party may play and enjoy it for hours. Cut a large figure of a donkey, minus a tail, from dark paper or cloth, and pin it upon a sheet stretched tightly across a door-way. Each player is given a piece of paper, which would fit the donkey for a tail, if applied. On each tail is written the name of the person holding it. When all is ready, the players are blindfolded in turn—placed facing the donkey a few steps back in the room—then turned around rapidly two or three times, and told to advance with the tail held at arm's length, and with a pin previously inserted in the end, attach it to the figure of the donkey wherever they first touch it. When the whole curtain is adorned with tails—(not to mention all the furniture, family portraits, etc., in the vicinity)—and there are no more to pin on, the person who has succeeded in fastening the appendage the nearest to its natural dwelling place, receives a prize, and the player who has given the most eccentric position to the tail entrusted to his care, receives the "booby" prize, generally some gift of a nature to cause a good-humored laugh.


A very old and still quite popular game. The company being seated around the room in a circle, some one stationed in the center throws an unfolded handkerchief to one of the seated players. Whoever receives it must instantly throw it to some one else, and so on, while the person in the center endeavors to catch the handkerchief in its passage from one player to another. If he catches it, as it touches somebody, that person must take his place in the center. If it is caught in the air, the player whose hands it last left enters the circle.

The handkerchief must not be knotted or twisted, but thrown loosely.




A beautiful game, which amuses even the mere spectator as much as it does the players. One of the company sits at the piano while another leaves the room. The rest of the party then hide some article, previously agreed upon, and recall the absent player. At his entrance the pianist begins playing some lively air, very softly, keeping up a sort of musical commentary upon his search, playing louder as he approaches the goal, and softer when he wanders away from it. In this way he is guided to at last discover the object of his search.


The cushions are set upright in a circle on the floor. The players then join hands, and form a ring round them. The circle formed by the cushions should be almost as large as the ring formed by the players, and the cushions may be placed at a considerable distance apart. The players in the ring dance round; and each player, as he dances, tries to make his neighbors knock over the cushions. He, however, avoids knocking over any himself. The players should not break the ring, as the penalty to one letting go hands is expulsion from the ring. If it is preferred, Indian clubs placed on end may be substituted for the cushions.


The players sit in a circle and form an orchestra. The conductor stands in the center. A tune is decided on, and the instruments are selected. Then the conductor beats time, and each player imitates as well as he can the sound of his instrument, and the motion used in playing it. Suddenly the conductor turns to one of the players and asks, "What is the matter with your instrument?" and immediately counts ten. Before he finishes counting, the player who has been questioned must begin an answer which is appropriate to his instrument. If his answer is inappropriate, or if it is not begun before the counting stops, he must change places with the conductor.

Whenever the conductor claps his hands the music must stop, and the players must remain in the attitudes in which they were when he gave the signal. Any one who fails to stop humming, or who changes his position, must become leader.

The same conductor may continue throughout the game. The person who fails in any of the requirements of the game then pays a forfeit.


A blindfolded player stands in the center of a circle with a wand, stick, or cane in his hand. The other players dance around him in a circle until he taps three times on the floor with the cane, when all must stand still. The blindfolded one points his cane in any direction. The one directly opposite it must make a noise like an animal. From this the person in the center of the ring guesses the other's identity. If he does so, there is an exchange of places.


This is a French game. In it each player is named for some article of "My Lady's Toilet," such as her gown, her hat, her gloves, etc. The players sit in a circle, and when the leader mentions an article of the toilet, the one who is named for it must rush to the center of the ring before the platter stops spinning there. If successful, he or she takes the place of the spinner in the center of the ring. If unsuccessful, the person returns to his or her place.

The leader may keep up the interest of the game by comments on the toilettes. This is most interesting in story form.

A variation of this game introduces the word ball. Whenever this is spoken of, the players must jump up and change places, the spinner trying to secure a seat in the general confusion. The odd player becomes a spinner.


The players—all but two—form a circle and clasp hands. Two odd players in the center are called, "Mary" and "John." The object of the game is for John to catch Mary. As he is blindfolded, he can only locate her in her stealthy movements by the sound of her muffled voice. When he says, "Mary, where are you?" she must answer as often as he questions her.

Mary may stoop or tiptoe, or resort to any means to escape capture, except leaving the ring.

When Mary is captured she is blindfolded and John takes her seat.

So the game goes on after Mary has chosen a new John.


This is a piano game, but does not require great skill. One person goes to the piano, while the others arrange in a line as many chairs, less one, as there are players, the chairs alternately facing opposite directions. Then, as the pianist begins to play, the others commence marching around the line of chairs, keeping time to the music. When this suddenly ceases, everybody tries to sit down, but as there is one less chair than players, somebody is left standing, and must remain out of the game. Then another chair is removed, and the march continues, until the chairs decrease to one, and the players to two.

Whichever of these succeeds in seating himself as the music stops, has won the game.


This game may be played by any number from three to thirteen. There are a dozen good-sized pieces of cardboard, each bearing a colored illustration of one of the "trades" following, viz.: a milliner, a fishmonger, a greengrocer, plumber, a music-seller, a toyman, mason, a pastry-cook, a hardware-man, a tailor, a poulterer, and a doctor. Besides these there are a number of smaller tickets, half a dozen to each trade. Each of these has the name of the particular trade, and also the name of some article in which the particular tradesman in question may be considered to deal. A book accompanies the cards, containing a nonsense story, with a blank at the end of each sentence.

One of the players is chosen as leader, and the others each select a trade, receiving the appropriate picture, and the six cards containing the names of the articles in which the tradesman deals. He places his "sign" before him on the table, and holds the remainder of his cards in his hand. The leader then reads the story, and whenever he comes to one of the blanks, he glances towards one of the other players, who must immediately, under penalty of a forfeit, supply the blank with some article he sells, at the same time laying down the card bearing its name. The incongruity of the article named with the context make the fun of the game, which is heightened by the vigilance which each player must exercise in order to avoid a forfeit. Where the number of players is very small, each may undertake two or more trades.

We will give an illustration. The concluding words indicate the trade of the person at whom the leader glances to fill up a given hiatus.

"Ladies and gentlemen, I propose to relate some curious adventures which befell me and my wife Peggy the other day, but as I am troubled with a complaint called 'Non mi ricordo,' or the 'Can't remembers,' I shall want each of you to tell me what you sell; therefore, when I stop and look at one of you, you must be brisk in recommending your goods. Whoever does not name something before I count 'three' must pay a forfeit. Attention!

"Last Friday week I was awakened very early in the morning by a loud knocking at my door in Humguffin Court. I got up in a great fright, and put on"—(looks at Toyman, who replies, "A fool's cap and bells," and lays down that card).

"When I got downstairs, who should be there but a fat porter, with a knot, on which he carried"—(Poulterer) "a pound of pork sausages."

"'Hallo!' said I, 'my fellow, what do you want at this time of day?' He answered"—(Fishmonger) "'A cod's head and shoulders.'"

"'Get along with you,' I said; 'there's my neighbor, Dr. Drenchall, I see, wants'"—(Butcher) "'a sheep's head.'"

"I now went up to shave, but my soap-dish was gone, and the maid brought me instead"—(Milliner) "a lady's chip hat."

"My razor had been taken to chop firewood, so I used"—(Greengrocer) "a cucumber."

"I then washed my face in"—(Doctor) "a cup of quinine," "cleaned my teeth with"—(Fishmonger) "a fresh herring," and "combed my hair with"—(Pastrycook) "a jam tart."

"My best coat was taken possession of by pussy and kittens, so I whipped on"—(Hardware-man) "a dripping pan."

"The monkey, seeing how funny I looked, snatched off my wig, and clapped on my head"—(Poulterer) "a fat hen."

"I now awoke my wife, and asked her what she had nice for breakfast; she said"—(Doctor) "a mustard plaster."

"Then I scolded Sukey, the servant, and called her"—(Poulterer) "a tough old turkey."

"But she saucily told me I was no better than"—(Music-seller) "an old fiddle."

"I soon had enough of that, so I asked my wife to go with me to buy"—(Tailor) "a pair of trousers."

"But she said she must have her lunch first, which consisted of——" etc., etc., through half a dozen pages, the tradesmen supply more or less appropriate articles to fill up the gaps in the discourse.




This noble animal is constructed as follows: A muscatel raisin forms the body, and small portions of the stalk of the same fruit the head and legs. With a little judgment in the selection of the pieces of stalk and the mode in which they are thrust into the body, it is surprising what a life-like tortoise may be thus produced. While the work of art in question is being handed round on a plate for admiration, the artist may further distinguish himself, if the wherewithal is obtainable, by constructing


The body of the pig consists of a lemon. The shape of this fruit renders it particularly well adapted for this purpose, the crease or shoulder at the small end of the lemon being just the right shape to form the head and neck of the pig. With three or four lemons to choose from, you cannot fail to find at least one which will answer the purpose exactly. The mouth and ears are made by cutting the ring with a penknife, the legs of short ends of lucifer matches, and the eyes either of black pins, thrust in up to the head, or grape stones.


The requirements for this touching picture are an orange, a pocket handkerchief or soft table napkin, and a narrow water goblet. The orange is first prepared by cutting in the rind with a penknife the best ears, nose, and mouth which the artist can compass, a couple of raisin-pips supplying the place of eyes. A pocket handkerchief is stretched lightly over the glass, and the prepared orange laid thereon. The pocket-handkerchief is then moved gently backward and forward over the top of the glass, imparting to the orange a rolling motion, and affording a laughable but striking caricature of the agonies of a seasick passenger.


Take four raisins or bread-pills, and place them about a foot apart, so as to form a square on the table. Next fold a couple of table-napkins, each into a pad of five inches square. Take one of these in each hand, the fingers undermost and the thumb uppermost. Then inform the company that you are about to give them a lesson in the art of hanky-panky, etc., and in the course of your remarks, bring down the two napkins carelessly over the two raisins farthest from you. Leave the right-hand napkin on the table, but, in withdrawing the hand, bring away the raisin between the second and third fingers, and at the same moment remarking, "You must watch particularly how many raisins I place under each napkin." Lift the left napkin (as if merely to show that there is one raisin only beneath it), and transfer it to the palm of the outstretched right hand, behind which the raisin is now concealed. Without any perceptible pause, but at the same time without any appearance of haste, replace the folded napkin on raisin No. 2, and in so doing, leave raisin No. 1 beside it. Now take up raisin No. 3 (with the right hand). Put the hand under the table, and in doing so get raisin No. 3 between the second and third fingers, as much behind the hand as possible. Give a rap with the knuckles on the underside of the table, at the same time saying, "Pass!" and forthwith pick up the left-hand napkin with the left hand, showing the raisins 1 and 2 beneath it. All eyes are drawn to the two raisins on the table, and as the right hand comes into sight from beneath the table, the left quietly transfers the napkin to it, thereby effectually concealing the presence of raisin No. 3. The napkin is again laid over raisins 1 and 2, and No. 3 is secretly deposited with them. No. 4 is then taken in the right hand, and the process repeated, when three raisins are naturally discovered, the napkin being once more replaced, and No. 4 left with the rest. There are now four raisins under the left-hand napkin, and none under that on the right hand, though the spectators are persuaded that there is one under the latter, and only three under the former. The trick being now practically over, the performer may please himself as to the form of the denouement, and, having gone through any appropriate form of incantation, commands the imaginary one to go and join the other three, which is found to have taken place accordingly.


The performer commences by borrowing two hats, which he places, crowns upward, upon the table, drawing particular attention to the fact that there is nothing whatever under either of them. He next demands the loan of the family sugar basin, and requests some one to select from it a lump of sugar (preferably one of an unusual and easily distinguished shape), at the same time informing them that, by means of a secret process, only known to himself, he will undertake to swallow such lump of sugar before their eyes, and yet, after a few minutes' interval, bring it under either of the two hats they may choose. The company, having been prepared by the last trick to expect some ingenious piece of sleight-of-hand, are all on the qui vive to prevent any substitution of another lump of sugar, or any pretence of swallowing without actually doing so. However, the performer does unmistakably take the identical lump of sugar chosen and crushes it to pieces with his teeth. He then asks, with unabated confidence, under which of the two hats he shall bring it, and, the choice having been made, places the chosen hat on his own head, and in that way fulfills his undertaking.


This is another feat of the genus "sell," and to produce due effect, should only be introduced after the performer has, by virtue of a little genuine magic, prepared the company to expect from him something a little out of the common. He begins by informing the spectators that he is about to show them a great mystery, a production of nature on which no human being has ever yet set eye, and which, when they have once seen, no human being will ever set eyes on again. When the general interest is sufficiently awakened, he takes a nut from the dish, and, having gravely cracked it, exhibits the kernel, and says, "Here is an object which you will admit no human being has ever seen, and which" (here he puts it into his mouth and gravely swallows it) "I am quite sure nobody will ever see again."


A very fair giant, for domestic purposes, may be produced by the simple expedient of seating a young lad astride on the shoulders of one of the older members of the company, and draping the combined figure with a long cloak or Inverness cape. The "head" portion may, of course, be "made up" as much as you please, the more complete the disguise the more effective being the giant. A ferocious-looking moustache and whiskers will greatly add to his appearance. If some ready-witted member of the party will undertake to act as showman, and exhibit the giant, holding a lively conversation with him, and calling attention to his gigantic idiosyncrasies, a great deal of fun may be produced. The joke should not, however, be very long continued, as the feelings of the "legs" have to be considered. If too long deprived of air and light they are apt to wax rebellious, and either carry the giant in the directions he would fain avoid, or even occasionally to strike together, and bring the giant's days to a sudden and undignified termination.




The exhibitor begins, in proper showman style: "Ladies and gentlemen, I have the pleasure of exhibiting to your notice the celebrated 'What-do-you-think?' or Giant Uncle-Eater. You have all probably heard of the Ant-Eater. This is, as you will readily perceive, a member of the same family, but more so! He measures seven feet from the tip of his snout to the end of his tail, eight feet back again, five feet around the small of his waist, and has four feet of his own, making twenty-four in all. In his natural state he lives chiefly on blue-bottle flies and mixed pickles, but in captivity it is found that so rich a diet has a tendency to make him stout, and he is now fed exclusively on old corks and back numbers of some daily paper. His voice, which you may perhaps have an opportunity of hearing (here the 'What-do-you-think?' howls dismally), is in the key of B fiat, and is greatly admired. People come here before breakfast to hear it, and when they have heard it, they assure us that they never heard anything like it before. Some have even gone so far as to say that they never wish to hear anything like it again,"' etc. The "What-do-you-think?" is manufactured as follows: The performer, who should have black kid gloves on, places on his head a conical paper cap, worked up with the aid of the nursery paint box into a rough semblance of an animal's head. This being securely fastened on, he goes down on his hands and knees and a shaggy railway rug (of fur, if procurable) is thrown over him and secured round his neck, when the animal is complete.


This is a capital game for everybody but the victim, and produces much fun. Some one who does not know the game is chosen to be Knight of the Whistle, and is commanded to kneel down and receive the honor of knighthood, which the leader (armed with a light cane, the drawing- room poker, or other substitute for a sword) confers by a slight stroke on the back. While placing him in position, opportunity is taken to attach to his back, by means of a bent pin or otherwise, a piece of string about a foot in length, to which is appended a small light whistle. Having been duly dubbed, in order to complete his dignity, he is informed that he must now go in quest of the whistle, which will be sounded at intervals, in order to guide him in his search. Meanwhile the other players gather in a circle round him, making believe to pass an imaginary object from hand to hand. The victim naturally believes that this imaginary object must be the long-lost whistle, and makes a dash for it accordingly, when the player who happens to be behind his back blows the actual whistle and instantly drops it again. Round flies the unhappy knight, and makes a fresh dash to seize the whistle, but in vain. No sooner has he turned to a fresh quarter than the ubiquitous whistle again sounds behind his back.

If the game is played smartly, and care taken not to pull the cord, the knight may often be kept revolving for a considerable period before he discovers the secret.


This is another "sell" of almost childish simplicity, but we have seen people desperately puzzled over it, and even "give it up" in despair.

The leader takes a stick (or poker) in his left hand, thence transfers it to his right, and thumps three times on the floor, saying: "He can do little who can't do this." He then hands the stick to another person, who, as he supposes, goes through exactly the same performance; but if he does not know the game, is generally told, to his disgust, that he has incurred a forfeit, his imitation not having been exact.

The secret lies in the fact that the stick, when passed on, is first received in the left hand and thence transferred to the right before going through the performance.


Two of the company agree privately upon a word (which should be one susceptible of two or three meanings), and interchange remarks tending to throw light upon it. The rest of the players do their best to guess the word, but when any of them fancies he has succeeded, he does not publicly announce his guess, but makes such a remark as to indicate to the two initiated that he has discovered their secret. If they have any doubt that he has really guessed the word, they challenge him, i.e., require him to name it in a whisper. If this guess proves to be right, he joins in conversation, and assists in throwing light on the subject; but if, on the other hand, he is wrong, he must submit to have a handkerchief thrown over his head, and so remain until by some more fortunate observation he shall prove that he really possesses the secret.

We will give an example. Mr. A. and Miss B. have agreed on "bed" as the word, and proceed to throw light upon it, alternating upon its various meanings of a place of repose, a part of a garden, or the bed of a river.

Miss B. I don't know what your opinion may be, but I am never tired of it.

Mr. A. Well, for my part, I am never in a hurry, either to get to it or to leave it.

Miss B. How delightful it is after a long, tiring day!

Mr. A. Yes. But it is a pleasure that soon palls. The most luxurious person does not care for too much of it at a stretch.

Miss B. Oh, don't you think so. In early spring, for instance, with the dew upon the flowers!

Mr. A. Ah! you take the romantic view. But how would you like it beneath some rapid torrent or some broad majestic river?

Miss C. (thinks she sees her way, and hazards a remark). Or in a sauce?

Mr. A. I beg your pardon. Please tell me in a whisper what you suppose the word to be?

Miss C. (whispers) Fish! What! isn't that right?

Mr. A. I am afraid you must submit to a temporary eclipse. (Throws her handkerchief over her face.)

Mr. A. to Miss B. You mentioned spring, I think. For my own part, I prefer feathers.

Mr. D. (rashly concludes, from the combination of "spring" and "feathers," that spring chickens must be referred to). Surely you would have them plucked?

Mr. A. (looks puzzled). I think not May I ask you to name your guess?
Oh, no, quite out. I must trouble you for your pocket handkerchief.

Miss B. It is curious, isn't it, that they must be made afresh every day?

Mr. A. So it is; though I confess it never struck me in that light before. I don't fancy, however, that old Brown, the gardener, makes his quite so often.

Miss B. You may depend that he has it made for him, though.

Miss C. (from under the handkerchief). At any rate, according as he makes it, his fate will be affected accordingly. You know the proverb?

Mr. A. (removing the handkerchief). You have fairly earned your release. By the way, do you remember an old paradox upon this subject, "What nobody cares to give away, yet nobody wishes to keep?"

Miss E. Ah! now you have let out the secret. I certainly don't wish to keep mine for long together, but I would willingly give it away if I could get a better.

Miss B. Tell me your guess. (Miss E. whispers.) Yes, you have hit it.
I was afraid Mr. A.'s last "light" was rather too strong.

And so the game goes on, until every player is in the secret, or the few who may be still in the dark "give it up" and plead for mercy. This, however, is a rare occurrence, for, as the company in general become acquainted with the secret, the "lights" are flashed about in a rash and reckless manner, till the task of guessing becomes almost a matter of course to an ordinarily acute person.




In some form or other the game of charades is played in almost every country under the sun. In acting charades the characters and situation are made to represent a play upon a word or words by portraying some feature which vividly brings such word or words to the mind.

Here is a popular one: Send one-half the company out of the room, into another which may be separated by double doors; portieres are best for the purpose. The party in the inner room think of some word which can be represented entire, in pantomime or tableau, and proceed to enact it. After they have made up, the door opens, and discloses half a dozen girls standing in a line, while one of the acting party announces that this striking tableau represents the name of a famous orator. The others failing to guess are told that Cicero (Sissy-row) is the orator represented.

Again, just as the clock strikes ten, the doors opening reveal a lady eating an apple or any convenient edible, while a gentleman who stands near points to the clock and then at her. This being correctly guessed to represent "attenuate" (at ten you ate), the other side goes from the room and the previous performers become the audience.

There are a host of words which with a little ingenuity may be turned to account. For example:

Ingratiate. (In gray she ate.) Catering. (Kate. Her ring.) Hero. (He row.) Tennessee. (Ten, I see.) The following are also good charade words: Knighthood, penitent, looking-glass, hornpipe, necklace, indolent, lighthouse, Hamlet, pantry, phantom, windfall, sweepstake, sackcloth, antidote, antimony, pearl powder, kingfisher, football, housekeeping, infancy, snowball, definite, bowstring, carpet, Sunday, Shylock, earwig, matrimony, cowhiding, welcome, friendship, horsemanship, coltsfoot, bridegroom, housemaid, curl-papers, crumpet.

We will take the word "windfall," as affording a ready illustration of the pantomime charade. "Wind" may be represented by a German band, puffing away at imaginary ophicleides and trombones, with distended cheeks and frantic energy, though in perfect silence. "Fall" may be portrayed by an elderly gentleman with umbrella up, who walks unsuspectingly on an ice slide and falls. The complete word "windfall" may be represented by a young man sitting alone, leaning his elbows on his hands, and having every appearance of being in the last stage of impecuniosity. To produce this effect, he may go through a pantomime of examining his purse and showing it empty, searching his pockets and turning them one by one inside out, shaking his head mournfully and sitting down again, throwing into his expression as much despair as he conveniently can. A letter carrier's whistle is heard; a servant enters with a legal-looking letter. The impecunious hero, tearing it open, produces from it a roll of stage banknotes, and forthwith gives way to demonstrations of the most extravagant delight, upon which the curtain falls.

In another the curtain rises (i.e., the folding-doors are thrown open), and a placard is seen denoting, "This is Madison Square," or any other place where professional men congregate. Two gentlemen in out-door costumes cross the stage from opposite sides and bow gravely on passing each other, one of them saying, as they do so, "Good morning, doctor." The curtain falls, and the audience are informed that the charade, which represents a word of six syllables, is complete in that scene. When the spectators have guessed or been told that the word is "met-a-physician," the curtain again rises on precisely the same scene, and the same performance, action for action, and word for word, is repeated over again. The audience hazard the same word "metaphysician" as the answer, but are informed that they are wrong—the word now represented having only three syllables, and they ultimately discover that the word is "metaphor" (met afore).

In another charade is seen a little toy wooden horse, such as can be bought for fifty cents. The spectators are told that this forms a word of two syllables, representing an island in the Aegean Sea. If the spectators are well up in ancient geography, they may possibly guess that Delos (deal hoss) is referred to. The curtain falls, and again rises on the same contemptible object, which is now stated to represent a second island in the same part of the world. The classical reader will at once see that Samos (same hoss) is intended. Again the curtain rises on the representation of an island. Two little wooden horses now occupy the scene, Pharos (pair 'oss) being the island referred to. Once more the curtain rises, this time on a group of charming damsels, each reclining in a woebegone attitude, surrounded by pill boxes and physic bottles, and apparently suffering from some painful malady. This scene represents a word of three syllables, and is stated to include all that has gone before. Cyclades (sick ladies), the name of the group to which Delos, Samos and Pharos belong, is of course the answer.

A comical charade is a performance representing the word "imitation." The spectators are informed that the charade about to be performed can be exhibited to only one person at a time. One person is accordingly admitted into the room in which the actors are congregated. The unhappy wight stares about him with curiosity, not unmingled with apprehension, fearing to be made the victim of some practical joke; nor is his comfort increased by finding that his every look or action is faithfully copied by each person present. This continues until he has either guessed or given up the word, when a fresh victim is admitted, and the new initiate becomes in turn one of the actors. Sometimes, however, the victim manages to turn the laugh against his persecutors. We have known a young lady, seeing through the joke, quietly take a chair and remain motionless, reducing the matter to a simple trial of patience between herself and the company.




There are few better amusements for a large party in the same house, with plenty of time on their hands, than the organization of tableaux vivants, or living representations. Tableaux, to be successfully represented, demand quite as much attention to detail as a theatrical performance, and scarcely less careful rehearsal. The first element of success is a competent stage manager. His artistic taste should be beyond all question, and his will should be law among the members of his corps. The essentials of a "living picture" are very much the same as those of a picture of the inanimate description, viz., form, color and arrangement. If, therefore, you can secure for the office of stage manager a gentleman of some artistic skill, by all means do so, as his technical knowledge will be found of the greatest possible service.

Before proceeding to plan your series of pictures, it will be necessary to provide the "frame" in which they are to be exhibited. If the room which you propose to use has folding doors, they will of course be used. A curtain, preferably of some dark color, should be hung on each side, and a lambrequin or valance across the top. Where circumstances admit, the directions we give elsewhere as to the construction of a stage and proscenium for private theatricals may be followed with advantage. In any case, a piece of fine gauze should be carefully stretched over the whole length and depth of the opening. This is found, by producing softer outlines, materially to enhance the pictorial effect. If it is practicable to have a raised stage, it will be found of great addition. Where this cannot be arranged, it is well to place a board, six inches in width, and covered with the same material as the rest of the frame, across the floor (on edge) from side to side, in the position which the footlights would ordinarily occupy.

The next consideration will be the curtain. The ordinary domestic curtains, hung by rings from a rod or pole, and opening in the middle, will serve as a makeshift; but where a really artistic series of tableaux is contemplated, the regular stage curtain of green baize is decidedly to be preferred.

The question of "background" will be the next point to be considered. Tableaux vivants may be divided into two classes, the dramatic, i.e., representing some incident, e.g., a duel, or a trial in a court of justice, and the simply artistic, viz., such as portray merely a group, allegorical or otherwise, without reference to any particular plot or story. For the former, an appropriate scene is required, varying with each tableau represented; for the latter, all that is necessary is a simple background of drapery, of such a tone of color as to harmonize with, and yet to give full prominence to, the group of actors. The material of the latter as also the covering of the floor, should be of woolen or velvet, so as to absorb rather than reflect light. A lustrous background, as of satin or glazed calico, will completely destroy the effect of an otherwise effective tableau.

The lighting is a point of very considerable importance—the conditions appropriate to an ordinary theatrical performance being here reversed. In an ordinary dramatic performance all shadow is a thing to be avoided, the point aimed at being to secure a strong bright light, uniformly distributed over the stage. In a tableau vivant, on the contrary, the skillful manipulation of light and shade is a valuable aid in producing artistic effect. Footlights should, in this case, either be dispensed with altogether or at any rate used very sparingly, the stronger light coming from one or the other side. A good deal of experiment and some little artistic taste will be necessary to attain the right balance in this particular. Where gas is available it will afford the readiest means of illumination. What is called a "string light," viz., a piece of gaspipe with fishtail burners at frequent intervals, connected with the permanent gas arrangements of the house by a piece of india rubber tube, and fixed in a vertical position behind each side of the temporary proscenium, will be found very effective; one or the other set of lights being turned up, as may be necessary. Where a green or red light is desired, the interposition of a strip of glass of that color, or of a "medium" of red or green silk or tammy, will give the necessary tone. Colored fires are supplied for the same purpose, but are subject to the drawback of being somewhat odoriferous in combustion. Where, as is sometimes the case, a strong white light is required, this may be produced by burning the end of a piece of magnesium wire in the flame of an ordinary candle.

These points being disposed of, costume and make-up will be the next consideration. As to the latter, the reader will find full instructions in the chapter devoted to private theatricals. With respect to costume, as the characters are seen for only a few moments, and in one position, this point may be dealt with in a much more rough-and-ready manner than would be advisable in the case of a regular dramatic performance. The royal crown need only be golden, the royal robe need only be trimmed with ermine-on the side toward the spectators; indeed, the proudest of sovereigns, from the audience point of view, may, as seen from the rear, be the humblest of citizens. Even on the side toward the spectators a great deal of "make believe" is admissible. Seen through the intervening gauze, the cheapest cotton velvet is equal to the richest silk; glazed calico takes the place of satin; and even the royal ermine may be admirably simulated by tails of black worsted stitched on a ground of flannel. Lace may be manufactured from cut paper, and a dollar's worth of tinsel will afford jewels for a congress of sovereigns. Of course, there is not the least objection to his wearing a crown of the purest gold, or diamonds of the finest possible water (if he can get them), but they will not look one whit more effective than the homely substitutes we have mentioned.

A "ghost effect" may, where necessary, be produced by the aid of a magic lantern; the other lights of the tableau being lowered in order to give sufficient distinctness to the reflection.

Dramatic tableaux may often be exhibited with advantage in two or more "scenes"; the curtain being lowered for a moment in order to enable the characters to assume a fresh position. Examples of this will be found among the tableaux which follow.

Having indicated the general arrangements of tableaux vivants, we append, for the reader's assistance, a selection of effective subjects, both simply pictorial and dramatic.


(With background of plain drapery, remaining unchanged.)

A magnificent flunkey, in a gorgeous suit of livery, standing, with left hand on hip, right hand in breast, side by side with a very small and saucy "boy in buttons," upon whom he looks down superciliously. Boy with both hands in trouser pockets and gazing up at his companion with an expression of impertinent familiarity.


A pretty girl, in simple outdoor costume, standing sideways to the spectators, with downcast eyes and a half-smiling, half-frightened expression. The fortune-teller faces her and holds the young lady's right hand in her left, while her own right hand holds a coin with which she is apparently tracing the lines of the young lady's palm, at the same time gazing with an arch expression into her face, as though to note the effect of her predictions. The fortune-teller should be in gipsy costume, a short, dark skirt and a hood of some brighter material thrown carelessly over her head. She should be of a swarthy complexion, with a good deal of color and jet-black hair.


A large cross, apparently of white marble (really of deal, well washed with whitening and size) occupies a diagonal position across the center of the stage, facing slightly toward the left. Its base or plinth is formed of two or three successive platforms or steps of the same material. At the foot a woman kneels, clasping her arms around the cross, as though she had just thrown herself into that position in escaping from some danger. Her gaze should be directed upward. A loose brown robe and hood, the latter thrown back off the head, will be the most appropriate costume. Magnesium light from above.


A female figure, clothed in sober gray, and seated on a very low stool, facing right and gazing heavenward. (If a "sky" background is procurable, a single star should be visible, and should be the object of her gaze.) Her right elbow rests upon her right knee, and her right hand supports her chin. Her left hand hangs by her side, and at her feet lies the emblematic anchor. Red light, not too strong.


A ragged boy, barefooted and clasping a wornout broom, sits huddled on the ground left, but facing right. His arms are folded and rest on his knees, and his head is bent down upon them, so as to hide his face. A girl, in nun's costume, is touching him on the shoulder, and apparently proffering help and sympathy.

Scene, a tolerably well-furnished but untidy sitting-room, with numerous traces of bachelor occupation, such as crossed foils on the wall, a set of boxing-gloves under a side table, boots, hats and walking-sticks lying about in various directions. On one corner of the table some one has apparently breakfasted in rather higgledy-piggledy fashion. Near the table sits a young man, with a short pipe in his mouth and one foot bare, while he is endeavoring to darn an extremely dilapidated sock.
Scene, a cottage home. A young man, in sailor costume and with a bundle on his shoulder, stands with his right hand on the latch of the door, right center, but looking back with a sorrowful expression at his wife—personated by a young lady in short black or blue skirt, red or white blouse, and white mob-cap—who sits with her apron up to her eyes in an apparent agony of grief. Three children are present, the two elder crying for sympathy, the youngest sitting in a crib or cradle and amusing himself with some toy, in apparent unconsciousness of his father's approaching departure. Soft blue light from left. Music, "The Minstrel Boy."

The same scene. Children a couple of years older. (This may be effected by suppressing the youngest and introducing a fresh eldest, as much like the others as possible.) The sailor of the last scene, slightly more tanned, and with a fuller "made-up" beard, has apparently just entered. The wife has both arms round his neck, her face being hidden in his bosom. Of the children, the eldest has seized and is kissing her father's hand, while the two younger each cling round one leg. Soft red light. Music, "A Lass that Loves a Sailor," or "When Johnny Comes Marching Home Again."


We subjoin a list of favorite subjects, leaving their actual arrangement to the taste and intelligence of the reader. It will usually be safe to follow the hints in good illustrations.

"Choosing the Wedding Gown." A charming scene after Mulready, from the
"Vicar of Wakefield."

"William Penn Signing the Treaty with the Indians."

"The Drunkard's Home," "Signing the Pledge," "The Temperance Home."
See some good illustrations.

"Mary Queen of Scots and the Four Maries."

"Mr. Pecksniff Dismissing Tom Pinch."

"The Song of the Shirt."

"Little Red Riding-Hood."

"The Duel from the 'Corsican Brothers.'"

"Heloise in Her Cell."

"William Tell Shooting the Apple From His Son's Head," etc., etc., etc.



The idea is that of a waxwork exhibition, the characters being personated, after a burlesque fashion, by living performers. Each "figure" is first duly described by the exhibitor, and then "wound up" and made to go through certain characteristic movements.

The collection is supposed to be that of the far-famed Mrs. Jarley, of "Old Curiosity Shop" celebrity. She may be assisted, if thought desirable, by "Little Nell" and a couple of manservants, John and Peter. The costume of Mrs. Jarley is a black or chintz dress, bright shawl and huge bonnet; that of Little Nell may be a calico dress and white apron, with hat slung over her arm. John and Peter may be dressed in livery suits, and should be provided with watchman's rattle, screwdriver, hammer, nails and oil-can. At the rise of the curtain the figures are seen ranged in a semicircle at the back of the stage, and Little Nell is discovered dusting them with a long feather brush. Mrs. Jarley stands in front, and delivers her descriptive orations, directing her men to bring forward each figure before she describes it. After having been duly described, the figure is "wound" up, and goes through its peculiar movement, and when it stops it is moved back to its place.

If the stage is small, or it is desired that the same actors shall appear in various characters in succession, the figures may be exhibited in successive groups or compartments, the curtain being lowered to permit one party to retire and another to take their places. After the whole of the figures of a given chamber have been described, the assistants wind them all up, and they go through their various movements simultaneously, to a pianoforte accompaniment, which should gradually go faster, coming at last to a sudden stop, when the figures become motionless and the curtain falls.

Mrs. Jarley may be made a silent character, sitting on one side, and occasionally making believe to dust or arrange a figure, while the "patter" is delivered by a male exhibitor. Or Mrs. Jarley may, if preferred, be suppressed altogether, and the exhibitor appear as (say) Artemus Ward, or in ordinary evening costume, without assuming any special character. A good deal of fun may be made of the supposed tendency of any particular figure to tip over, and the application, by John and Peter, of wooden wedges, penny pieces, etc., under its feet to keep it upright. Supposed defective working, causing the figure to stop suddenly in the middle of its movements, and involving the rewinding or oiling of its internal mechanism, will also produce a good deal of amusement. The "winding up" may be done with a bed-winch, a bottle-jack key, or the winch of a kitchen range, the click of the mechanism being imitated by means of a watchman's rattle, or by the even simpler expedient of drawing a piece of hard wood smartly along a notched stick. (This, of course, should be done out of sight of the audience.) The movement of the figure should be accompanied by the piano, to a slow or lively measure, as may be most appropriate.

The arrangement being complete and the curtain raised, Mrs. Jarley delivers her opening speech, about as follows:

"Ladies and gentlemen, you here behold Mrs. Jarley, one of the most remarkable women of the world, who has traveled all over the country with her curious Collection of Waxworks. These figures have been gathered, at great expense, from every clime and country, and are here shown together for the first time. I shall describe each one of them for your benefit, and, after I have given you their history, I shall have each one of them wound up, for they are all fitted with clockwork inside, and they can thus go through the same motions they did when living. In fact, they execute their movements so naturally that many people have supposed them to be alive; but I assure you that they are all made of wood and wax—blockheads every one.

"Without further prelude, I shall now introduce to your notice each one of my figures, beginning, as usual, with the last one first."


"This figure is universally allowed to be the tallest figure in my collection; he originated in the two provinces of Oolong and Shanghi, one province not being long enough to produce him. On account of his extreme length it is impossible to give any adequate idea of him in one entertainment, consequently he will be continued in our next.

"He was the inventor, projector and discoverer of Niagara Falls, Bunker's Hill Monument and the Balm of Columbia. In fact, everything was originally discovered by him or some other of the Chinese. The portrait of this person, who was a high dignitary among them, may be often seen depicted on a blue china plate, standing upon a bridge, which leans upon nothing, at either end, and intently observing two birds which are behind him in the distance.

"John, wind up the Giant."

The Giant bows low, then wags his head three times and bows as before, and after a dozen motions slowly stops.

"You will observe that I have spared no expense in procuring wonders of every sort, and here is my crowning effort or masterpiece—"


"A remarkable freak of nature, which impresses the beholder with silent awe. Observe the two heads and one body. See these fair faces, each one lovelier than the other. No one can gaze upon them without a double sensation 'of sorrow and of joy'—sorrow that such beauty and grace were ever united, and joy that he has had the pleasure of contemplating their union.

"Wind them up, Peter."

This figure is made by two young ladies standing back to back, wrapped in one large skirt. They hold their arms out, with their hands hanging, and slowly revolve when they are wound up.


"John, bring out the Sewing-Woman, and let the ladies behold the unfortunate seamstress who died from pricking her finger with a needle while sewing on Sunday. You see that the work which she holds is stained with gore, which drips from her finger onto the floor. (Which is poetry!) This forms a sad and melancholy warning to all heads of families immediately to purchase the best sewing-machines, for this accident never could have happened had she not been without one of those excellent machines, such as no family should be without."

Costume: Optional.

When wound up, the figure sews very stiffly and stops slowly.


"Ladies and Gentlemen: Permit me to call your attention to this beautiful group, which has lately been added, at an enormous expense, to my collection. You here behold the first privateer and the first victim of his murderous propensities. Captain Kidd, the robber of the main, is supposed to have originated somewhere down east. His whole life being spent upon the stormy deep, he amassed an immense fortune, and buried it in the sand along the flower-clad banks of Cape Cod, by which course he invented the savings banks, now so common along shore. Having hidden away so much property, which, like so many modern investments, never can be unearthed, he was known as a great sea-cretur. Before him kneels his lovely and innocent victim, the Lady Blousabella Infantina, who was several times taken and murdered by this bloodthirsty tyrant, which accounts for the calm look of resignation depicted upon her lovely countenance.

"Wind 'em up, John."

Costumes: Captain Kidd—white pantaloons, blue shirt, sailor hat, pistol and sword.

Victim—Lady with flowing hair, white dress. Movement—The captain's sword moves up and down, and the victim's arms go in unison.


Two gentlemen dressed alike in ordinary costume, with a large bone (attached by wire or string) between them. One arm of each over the other's neck. Pugnacious expression of countenance.

"The wonderful Siamese Twins compose the next group. These remarkable brothers lived together in the greatest harmony, though there was always a bone of contention between them. They were never seen apart, such was their brotherly fondness. They married young, both being opposed to a single life. The short one is not quite so tall as his brother, although their ages are about the same. One of them was born in the Island of Borneo, the other on the southern extremity of Cape Cod."

When wound up they begin to fight, continue for a moment and stop suddenly.


"This wonderful child has created some interest in the medical and scientific world, from the fact that he was thirteen years old when he was born, and kept on growing older and older until he died, at the somewhat advanced age of two hundred and ninety-seven, in consequence of eating too freely of pies and cakes, his favorite food. He measured exactly two feet and seven inches from the crown of his head to the sole of his foot, and two feet and ten inches back again. Was first discovered ten miles from any land and twelve miles from any water, making the enormous total of ninety-one, which figure was never before reached by any previous exhibition. Wind him up, John."

Dwarf eats very stiffly with a large spoon in his right hand; in his left hand he holds a bowl, which falls on the floor after a moment and is broken.

"John, get your tools and screw up that dwarf's hand, for it has become so loose that it costs a fortune for the crockery he breaks."

John screws up the hand, gets a new bowl, and again winds up the figure, which now moves with much greater energy.


"Bring out the Vocalist. I now call your attention to the most costly of all my figures. This wonderful automaton singer represents Signorina Squallini, the unrivaled vocalist, whose notes are current in every market, and sway all hearts at her own sweet will.

"Wind her up and let her liquid notes pour forth."

She gesticulates wildly, and sings a few notes in a very extravagant manner, then stops with a hoarse sound.

Mrs. J.: "John, this figure needs oiling. Why do you not attend to your duties better?"

John gets oilcan, which he applies to each ear of the figure, which strikes a high note and sings with much expression and many trills, then makes a gurgling sound, as if running down, and suddenly stops again.

Costume: Evening dress.


Description: A tall, thin man, clean shaven, but for a tuft on chin, dressed in black, with broad-brimmed straw hat. He is seated on a low rocking-chair, with his legs resting on the back of another chair. He holds a wooden stick, which he is whittling with a jackknife.

"You here behold a specimen of our irrepressible, indomitable native Yankee, who has been everywhere, seen everything and knows everything. He has explored the arid jungles of Africa, drawn forth the spotted cobra by his prehensile tail, snowballed the Russian bear on the snowy slopes of Alpine forests, and sold wooden nutmegs to the unsuspecting innocents of Patagonia. He has peddled patent medicines in the Desert of Sahara, and hung his hat and carved his name on the extreme top of the North Pole. The only difficulty I find in describing him is that I cannot tell what he cannot do. I will therefore set him in motion, as he hates to be quiet."

When, wound up he pushes his hat back on his head and begins to whittle.


"Here you behold a curious cannibal from the Feejee Islands, first discovered by Captain Cook, who came very near being cooked by him. In that case, the worthy captain would never have completed his celebrated voyage round the world. This individual was greatly interested in the cause of foreign missions. Indeed, he received the missionaries gladly and gave them a place near his heart. He was finally converted by a very tough tract-distributor, who had been brought up in a Bloomsbury boarding-house, and was induced to become civilized. One of his evidences of a change of life was shown by his statement that he now had but one wife, like the English. 'What have you done with the other twelve which you said you had a month ago?' asked the tract distributor. 'Oh, I have eaten them!' replied the gentle savage. This cannibal was very fond of children, especially those of a tender age; he holds in his hand a war-club, with which he prepared his daily meals, also a warwhoop, which is an original one."

Costume: Brown jersey and drawers, face and hands colored to match, very short skirt, feather headdress, large rings in nose and ears. One hand holds a war-club, the other a child's hoop.

Movement: When wound up he brandishes his club and raises hoop to his mouth.


Two men, the bigger the better, one dressed as a very small boy, the other as a little girl; each holds a penny bun.

"In the next group you behold the Babes in the Wood, who had the misfortune to have an uncle. This wicked man hired a villain to carry these babes away into the wood and leave them to wander until death put an end to their sorrow, and the little robins covered them up with leaves. These lifelike figures represent the children just after taking their leaves of the villain. By a master stroke of genius the artist has shown very delicately that human nature is not utterly depraved, for the villain has placed in the hand of each of the innocents a penny bun as a parting present. I have been often asked 'why I did not have a figure of the villain also added to the group?' but my reply always is, 'Villains are too common to be any curiosity.'

"Wind 'em up, John."

Each Babe offers to the other a bite of bun alternately.


A young lady carrying a basket on her arm. Costume in accordance with the story.

"Here you behold Little Red Riding-Hood, a model of grand filial devotion, for she was so fond of her granny that she wandered through the forest to take the old lady's luncheon, and was eaten by the wolf for so doing, which is a warning to all children to be careful how they do much for their grandmothers, unless they are rich and can leave them something in their wills. This personage was an especial favorite with children, who love to read about her, and shed tears over her unhappy fate, although some of them think that had she been as smart as her dress, she would have been too smart to have mistaken the wolf for her grandmother, unless she had been a very homely old lady, or he had been much better looking than most wolves."

When wound up, the figure curtseys and holds out her basket.


Young lady with long hair, flowing over her shoulders, holds bottle (labelled Mrs. Blank's Hair Restorer) and curling-tongs.

"This is one of the most expensive of my costly collection, for blonde hair is very high, and you see how heavy and long are the golden locks which adorn her beautiful face. I cannot pass this figure without saying a few words in praise of the wonderful hair restorer, for this image had grown so bald from the effect of long journeys by road or rail that she was exhibited for two years as the Old Man of the Mountain. One bottle of this wonderful fluid, however, restored her hair to its present growth and beauty, and a little of the fluid being accidentally spilled upon the pine box in which the figure was carried, it immediately became an excellent hair trunk."




The elaborate "sell" which goes by this name used to be a regular institution in church bazaars and might well be rejuvenated as a novelty.

A regular printed catalogue is got up, containing apparently the names of a collection of pictures or sculptures, each object duly numbered and with the name of the artist appended. In some instances the name of a (supposed) picture is followed by an appropriate quotation in poetry or prose, after the orthodox fashion of art galleries. We append, by way of illustration, a selection from the catalogue of a collection which has met with great success: EXHIBITION OF THE WORKS OF LIVING ARTISTS


1. Horse Fair After Rosa Bonheur. 2. A Brush With a Cutter Off Deal Carpenter. 3. Caught in a Squall Off Yarmouth Fisher. 4. The Last of Poor Dog Tray Barker. 5. "He Will Return, I Know He Will" Lent by the Trustees of the Parish. 6. The Midnight Hour. C. Lock. 7. Heroes of Waterloo. Schumacher. 8. True to the Core. C. Odling. 9. "Spring, Spring, Beautiful Spring!" Mayne. 10. "Tears, Idle Tears." Strong. 11. The Midnight Assassin. F. Sharpe. 12. The Dripping Well. T. Inman. 13. Family Jars. Potter. 14. Never Too Late to Mend. S. Titch. 15. Past Healing. Kobler. 16. The First Sorrow. Smalchild. 17. Saved. S. Kinflint 18. Lost 19. First Love. Sweet. 20. The Death of the Camel. After Goodall. 21. His First Cigar. A. Young. 22. A Good Fellow Gone. M. I. Slade. 23. Portrait of a Gentleman. Anonymous. 24. Portrait of a Lady. Anonymous. 25. Our Churchwardens. Screw. 26. Portraits of the Reigning Sovereigns of Europe. (Taken by special order). G. P. O. 27. Waifs of Ocean. Fish. "Strange things come up to look at us, The Monsters of the deep." 28. The Last Man. Unknown. 29. Contribution from the Celebrated Sheepsbanks Collection. Butcher. 30. The Light of Other Days. Dimm. 31. The Meet of Her Majesty's Hounds. Pratt. 32. Water Scene. "And I hear Those waters rolling from the mountain springs With a sweet inland murmur." 33. The Maiden's Joy. Bachelor. 34. The Fall. Adam. 35. Motherhood.

  "She laid it where the sunbeams fall
  Unscanned upon the broken wall,
  Without a tear, without a groan,
  She laid it near a mighty stone
  Which some rude swain had haply cast
  Thither in sports, long ages past.
  There in its cool and quiet bed,
  She set her burden down and fled;
  Nor flung, all eager to escape,
  One glance upon the perfect shape
  That lay, still warm and fresh and fair,
  But motionless and soundless there."
  —C. S. Calverley.

36. A Friendly Party on Hampstead Heath. Moke. 37. Borrowed Plumes. Wigg. 38. Out for the Night. Anonymous. 39. Something to Adore. Anonymous. 40. The Weaned Grinder. Mayne Force. "Change and decay in all around I see." 41. Repentance. G. Templar. 42. Maggie's Secret. Rossetter. 43. Somebody's Luggage. S. Canty. 44. Eusebius. B. Linkers. 45. Happy Childhood. Wackford Squeers. 46. Not Such a Fool as He Looks. The Exhibitor. 47. A Choice Collection of Old China. 48. A Fine Specimen of Local Quartz Discovered in the Possession of a Workman. During the Building of the New Town Hall. 49. The Skull of the Last of the Mohicans. 50. A Marble Group. 51. Bust. 52. The Puzzle. 53. The Instantaneous Kid Reviver. 54. The Earnest Entreaty.


Anyone not in the secret, perusing the above catalogue, would naturally conclude that the descriptions referred to pictorial art of some kind or other. But such is by no means the case. The visitor, on being admitted, finds, in place of the expected pictures, shelves or tables on which are arranged sundry very commonplace objects, each bearing a numbered ticket. On close examination he finds that the numbers correspond with those in the catalogue, and that No. 1, "Horse Fair"—fare—is represented after a realistic fashion by a handful of oats and a wisp of hay. No. 2, which he expected to find a spirited marine sketch, is in reality only a toothbrush lying beside a jack-plane; while the supposed companion picture, "Caught in a Squall Off Yarmouth," is represented by a red herring. No. 4, "The Last of Poor Dog Tray," is a sausage, and the exhibitor particularly begs that no gentleman will on any account whistle while passing this picture. No. 5, "He Will Return, I Know He Will," presumably the agonized cry of a forsaken maiden, is in reality a poor-rate collector's paper, marked "Fifth application." No. 6 is represented by a numbered ticket only, with no object attached to it. The exhibitor explains that "The Midnight Hour" has not yet arrived, but that any gentleman who likes to wait till it does (which will be at twelve o'clock punctually), is very welcome to do so. The "Heroes of Waterloo," Wellington and Blucher, No. 7, are represented by a couple of boots known by those distinguished names. 8, "True to the Core," is a rosy-cheeked apple. 9 is a coil of watch spring. 10, "Tears, Idle Tears," on which the exhibitor feelingly expatiates as a noble example of the imaginative in art, is an onion. The space dedicated to No. 11 is occupied by the numbered ticket only, the exhibitor explaining that "The Midnight Assassin" (who is stated to be a large and lively flea) has strolled away and is wandering at large about the room; and he adds an entreaty that any lady or gentleman who may meet with him will immediately return him to his place in the collection. "The Dripping Well" (No. 12) proves to be of the description more usually known as a dripping-pan. "Family Jars," by Potter, is found to consist of a pickle jar and jam pot. No. 14, "Never Too Late to Mend," is a boot patched all over; while 15, "Past Healing," is its fellow, too far gone to admit of like renovation. "The First Sorrow" is a broken doll. "Saved" is a money box, containing twopence halfpenny, mostly in farthings. The next is a vacant space, over which the exhibitor passes with the casual remark, "No. 18, as you will observe, is unfortunately lost." No. 19, "First Love," is a piece of taffy. 20, "The Death of the Camel," is a straw, labeled "the last," and the exhibitor explains that this is the identical straw that broke the camel's back. "His First Cigar" is a mild Havana of brown paper. "A Good Fellow Gone" is suggested, rather than represented, by an odd glove. Nos. 23 and 24 are represented by two small mirrors, which are handed to a lady and a gentleman respectively, with a few appropriate remarks as to the extreme success of the likenesses, coupled with critical remarks as to the "expression" in each case. "Our Churchwardens" are a pair of long clay pipes. No. 26, "Portraits of the Reigning Sovereigns of Europe," are represented by a few cancelled foreign postage stamps. "The Monsters of the Deep," in No. 27, are represented by a periwinkle and a shrimp. "The Last Man" (No. 28), is at present missing from his place in the collection, but the exhibitor explains that he will be seen going out just as the exhibition closes. The "Contribution from the Sheepshanks Collection" (29), is a couple of mutton bones; while "The Light of Other Days" (30) is an old-fashioned lantern and tinder box. "The Meet (meat) of Her Majesty's Hounds" is a piece of dog biscuit. No. 32 is a leaky can of water. "The Maiden's Joy" (obviously) is a wedding ring. "The Fall" is a lady's veil. No. 35, "Motherhood," is the gem of the collection, and should be kept carefully hidden (say by a handkerchief thrown over it) until the company have had time to read and appreciate Mr. Caverley's graceful lines, when the veil is removed, and behold—an egg! No. 36, "A Friendly Party on Hampstead Heath," is represented by three toy donkeys. "Borrowed Plumes" are represented by a lady's false front. "Out for the Night" is an extinguished candle. "Something to Adore" is a rusty bolt. "The Wearied Grinder" is a back tooth of somebody's very much the worse for wear. "Repentance" (No. 41) is represented by a smashed hat and a bottle of sodawater. "Maggie's Secret" is a gray hair, labeled "Her First." No. 43, "Somebody's Luggage," consists of a broken comb and a paper collar. "Eusebius" is a pair of spectacles. "Happy Childhood" is indicated by a lithe and "swishy" cane. When the company arrive at No. 46, the corresponding object is apparently missing. The exhibitor refers to his notes and says: "46—46? I see they have written down against No. 46, 'The Exhibitor,' but I don't see quite what they mean. Suppose we pass on to the curiosities, ladies and gentlemen." No. 47 is merely some smashed crockery, and No. 48 a pewter quart pot. No. 49 is again a vacant space, and the exhibitor explains that "The Last of the Mohicans" has just gone home to his tea, and has taken his skull with him. No. 50 is, as its name implies, a group of marbles, of the school boy character. No. 51 is a paper bag of peas, and, being too full, has "bust." "The Puzzle" (No. 52) is an old guide book. "The Instantaneous Kid Reviver" is a baby's feeding bottle; and the "Earnest Entreaty" is the request of the exhibitor that the visitors will recommend the collection to their friends.

If the "showman" be possessed of a good fund of talk and a dash of dry humor, the fun of the collection may be still further enhanced by his explanations and criticisms of the various objects. Poor Artemus Ward's celebrated lecture is an excellent model to copy; indeed, many of his "bits" may be stolen bodily with very satisfactory result. Even without the aid of a showman, the comparison of the poetical descriptions and the sober reality will produce a good deal of fun; but, in this case, the various blanks or vacant spaces to be filled up by explanation must necessarily be omitted—a good many telling items being thereby sacrificed.




Place a small magic lantern in a box large enough to contain a small swing dressing-glass, which will reflect the light thrown on it by the lantern in such a way that it will pass out at the aperture made at the top of the box, which aperture should be oval and of a size adapted to the cone of light to pass through it. There should be a flap with hinges, to cover the opening, that the inside of the box may not be seen. There must be holes in that part of the box which is over the lantern, to let out the smoke; and over this must be placed a chafing-dish, of an oblong figure, large enough to hold several lighted coals. This chafing-dish, for the better carrying on the deception, may be inclosed in a painted tin box, about a foot high, with a hole at top, and should stand on four feet, to let the smoke of the lantern escape. There must also be a glass planned to move up and down in the groove, and so managed by a cord and pulley that it may be raised up and let down by the cord coming through the outside of the box. On this glass the spectre (or any other figure you please) must be painted, in a contracted or squat form, as the figure will reflect a greater length than it is drawn. When you have lighted the lamp in the lantern and placed the mirror in a proper direction, put the box on a table, and, setting the chafing-dish in it, throw some incense in powder on the coals. You then open the trap door and let down the glass in the groove slowly, and when you perceive the smoke diminish, draw up the glass, that the figure may disappear, and shut the trap-door. This exhibition will afford much wonder. The lights in the room must be extinguished, and the box should be placed on a high table, that the aperture through which the light comes out may not be seen.


The light of the magic-lantern and the color of images may not only be painted on a cloth, but also reflected by a cloud of smoke. Provide a box of wood or pasteboard, about four feet high and seven or eight inches square at bottom, but diminishing as it ascends, so that its aperture at the top be but six inches long and half an inch wide. At the bottom of this box there must be a door that shuts quite close, by which you are to place in the box a chafing-dish with hot coals, on which is to be thrown incense, whose smoke goes out in a cloud at the top of the box; on this cloud you are to throw the light that comes out of the lantern, and which you bring into a smaller compass by drawing out the movable tube. In this representation, the motion of the smoke does not at all change the figures, which appear so conspicuous that the spectator thinks he can grasp them with his hand. In the experiment, some of the rays passing through the smoke, the representation will be much less vivid than on the cloth; and if care be not taken to reduce the light to its smallest focus, it will be still more imperfect.


In showing the common magic-lantern, the spectators see a round circle of light with the figures in the middle of it; but in the Phantasmagoria they see the figures only, without any circle of light. The exhibition is produced by a magic lantern, placed on that side of a half-transparent screen which is opposite to that on which the spectators are, instead of being on the same side, as in the ordinary exhibition of the magic lantern. To favor the deception, the slides are made perfectly opaque, except in those places that contain the figures to be exhibited, and in these light parts the glass is covered with a more or less transparent tint, according to the effect required. The easiest way is to draw the figures with water colors on thin paper and afterward varnish them. To imitate the natural motions of the objects represented, several pieces of glass placed behind each other are occasionally employed. By removing the lantern to different distances, and at the same time altering, more or less distinct, at the pleasure of the exhibitor; so that, to a person unacquainted with the effect of optical instruments, these figures appear actually to advance and recede. Transparent screens for the Phantasmagoria are prepared by spreading white wax, dissolved in spirits of wine or oil of turpentine, over thin muslin; a screen so prepared may be rolled up without injury. A clearer screen may be produced by having the muslin always strained upon a rectangular frame, and preparing it with turpentine, instead of wax; but such a screen is not always convenient, and cannot be rolled without cracking, and becoming in a short time useless.


In a partition wall cut an aperture of any size; for example, four feet in length and two in breadth, so that the lower edge may be about five feet from the floor, and cover it with white Italian gauze, varnished with gum-copal. Provide several frames of the same size as the aperture, covered with the same kind of gauze, and delineate upon the gauze different figures, such as landscapes and buildings, analogous to the scenes which you intend to exhibit by means of small figures representing men and animals. These figures are formed of pasteboard, and their different parts are made movable, according to the effect intended to be produced by their shadows, when moved backward and forward behind the frames, at a small distance from them. To make them act with more facility, small wires, fixed to their movable parts, are bent backward and made to terminate in rings, through which the fingers of the hand are put, while the figure is supported on the left by means of another iron wire. In this manner they may be made to advance or recede and to gesticulate, without the spectators observing the mechanism by which they are moved; and as the shadow of these figures is not observed on the paintings till they are opposite those parts which are not strongly shaded, they may thus be concealed and made to appear at the proper moments, and others may be occasionally substituted in their stead.

It is necessary, when the figures are made to act, to speak a dialogue, suited to their gestures, and imitate the noise occasioned by different circumstances. The paintings must be illuminated from behind by means of a reverberating lamp, placed opposite to the center of the painting, and distant from it about four or five feet. Various amusing scenes may be represented in this manner by employing small figures of men and animals, and making them move in as natural a way as possible, which will depend on the address and practice of the person who exhibits them.


Make two openings of a foot high and ten inches wide and about a foot distant from each other, in the wainscoting of a wall; let them be at the common height of a man's head; and in each of them place a transparent glass, surrounded with a frame, like a common mirror. Behind this partition place two mirrors, one on the outward side of each opening, inclined to the wainscot at an angle of forty-five degrees; let them both be eighteen inches square; let all the space between them be enclosed by boards or pasteboard, painted black and well closed, that no light may enter; let there be also two curtains to cover them, which may be drawn aside at pleasure. When a person looks into one of these supposed mirrors, instead of seeing his own face he will perceive the object that is in the front of the other; so that, if two persons present themselves at the same time before these mirrors, instead of each one seeing himself, they will reciprocally see each other. There should be a sconce with a candle or lamp placed on each side of the two glasses in the wainscot, to enlighten the faces of the persons who look in them, otherwise this experiment will have no remarkable effect. This recreation may be considerably improved by placing the two glasses in the wainscot in adjoining rooms, and a number of persons being previously placed in one room, when a stranger enters the other, you may tell him his face is dirty, and desire him to look in the glass, which he will naturally do; and on seeing a strange face he will draw back; but returning to it, and seeing another, another and another, what his surprise will be is more easy to conceive than express.

When one looks in a mirror placed perpendicularly to another, his face will appear entirely deformed. If the mirror be a little inclined, so as to make an angle of eighty degrees (that is, one-ninth part from the perpendicular), he will then see all the parts of his face, except the nose and forehead; if it be inclined to sixty degrees (that is, one-third part), he will appear with three noses and six eyes; in short, the apparent deformity will vary at each degree of inclination; and when the glass comes to forty-five degrees (that is, half-way down), the face will vanish. If, instead of placing the two mirrors in this situation, they are so disposed that their junction may be vertical, their different inclinations will produce other effects, as the situation of the object relative to these mirrors is quite different.


Attach to a dark wall a round piece of paper an inch or two in diameter, and, a little lower, at the distance of two feet on each side, make two marks; then place yourself directly opposite to the paper, and hold the end of your finger before your face in such a manner that when the right eye is open it shall conceal the mark on the right; if you then look with both eyes to the end of your finger, the paper, which is not at all concealed by it from either of your eyes, will, nevertheless, disappear.


Take a large drinking-glass, of a conical form, that is, small at bottom and wide at top, and, having put into it a dime, let it be half filled with water; then place a plate upon the top of the glass, and turn it quickly over, that the water may not get out; a piece of silver as large as half a dollar will immediately appear on the plate, and somewhat higher up another piece of the size of a dime.


A dummy figure (suppose that of a witch, riding on the conventional broomstick) is suspended by fine threads or wires on the screen remote from the spectators. Behind this are ranged, one behind the other, and at right angles to the screen, a row of lighted candles. Being all in the same line, they throw one shadow only on the screen. The figure is now made to oscillate slightly, so as to impart some little motion to the shadow. One of the candles is now removed from its place in the row, and waved gently about, now high, now low, the effect to the spectators being that a second shadow springs out of the first, and dances about it on the screen. A second and third candle is then removed, and waved up and down, each candle as it leaves its place in the line, producing a separate shadow. It is well to have three or four assistants, each taking a candle in each hand.




At the beginning of the game the dominoes are thoroughly shuffled by being turned face down and stirred round and round. The players then draw at random as many bones as the game requires. These dominoes with which the hand is to be played may stand on their edges in front of the players or may be held in the hand, or both. It is usual to sort them into suits as far as possible. The one who has drawn the highest doublet usually plays or sets first.

The object in dominoes is either to block the game so that the adversary cannot play or it is to make the two ends when added together equal to some multiple of a given number, or it is to make both ends of the line the same. The player first getting rid of all his pieces is "Domino."

Dominoes are made in sets known by the number of pips on the highest domino or bone in the set. The standard set is double-sixes and contains twenty-eight bones. Some persons use double-nines. In the double-six set there are seven "suits," each named after some number from six to blank. In each of these suits there are seven bones, but each domino in a suit, except the doublet, belongs to some other suit as well. The lower figure on each domino shows the other suit to which it belongs.

All games of dominoes, except matadore, are based on the principle of following suit or matching. The first player "sets" a certain domino, and after that each player must play one of the same suit, the suit called for being always that of the exposed or open end.


The object of each player is to get all his men into his home table, and as soon as they have all arrived to throw them off the board altogether. The one that succeeds in doing this first wins the game. Each of two players has fifteen men, known as black and white, and each should have his own dice-box. Almost all of the folding checker boards are marked on the reverse side for backgammon, and the fifteen men of each color in a checker set are intended for backgammon players. The two sides of the board nearer the players are called tables, and the table with only two men on two of the points is called the inner table. It is also the home table of the player who sits with that side of the board nearer to him.

It does not matter which way the board is turned, as the arrow points are alternately light and dark all the way round in either direction, but it is usual to place the side of the board with only two men on points nearest the window, so that there shall be a good light on the home tables. The points in the home tables are known by their numbers, which correspond to the faces of a die, and are called: ace point, deuce point, trey point, four point, five point, and six point.

The point immediately across the bar which divides the two tables is called the "bar point," not because it is next the bar, but because it bars the two adverse men in your home table from running away with double sixes if you can "make it up."


The object of the game is to capture all the opponent's men and remove them from the board, or else to pin them up in such a manner that he cannot move. If neither player can accomplish this, the game is drawn.

A board divided into sixty-four squares is used. These are of dark and light color. Each player receives twelve men, known as white and black. At the beginning of the game the board is so placed that each player shall have two of his men touching the edge of the board at his left. The men are set on the black squares.

The squares upon the board are supposed to be numbered from one to sixty-four, beginning at the upper left-hand corner upon the side of the board occupied by the black men.

In giving the moves the first figures are the moves of a black man.
The next figures are the moves of a white man.

As the men never leave the color upon which they are first placed, all moves must be diagonal. A man can move only one square at a time, and only to a square which is in front of him diagonally and is not occupied.

If a square to which a man might move is occupied by an adverse piece, that piece can be jumped over if there is a vacant square immediately beyond him. The capturing piece moves to this vacant square, and the man jumped over is removed from the board. Two or more men may sometimes be captured simultaneously. When a piece may be captured the player is obliged to take it. If he does not, his adversary can compel him to take back his move and make the capture, or can remove from the board the piece that should have made the capture, or can let the matter stand. If there are two different captures on the board at the same time the player can take his choice of them.


Any number of players may play this game, which is common to almost every nation, and is very interesting. Sides being formed, the players seat themselves at a table, facing each other. It having been decided who shall first hold the silver piece, the player who receives it holds it in his closed hand under the table, as do all the players on his side, when they receive it, and the piece is passed from hand to hand, the object being to deceive the opposite players as to its whereabouts.

The captain of the side which has not the coin now calls: "Jenkins says hands up," and all the hands come up, closed; then "Jenkins says hands down," and all the hands fall, palms downward, on the table. There should be much noise to drown the clink of the piece as it falls on the table.

The opposing side now tries to guess the side which has not the coin. The captain directs the players who have not the piece to take their "hands off." None of his side may give this order. Should any do so the coin is forfeited.

Should the captain make a mistake and call up a hand under which the coin is hidden, the piece remains with the same side, and the number of hands still on the table counts for the side which keeps the coin. If the last hand left on the table covers the piece, it then goes to the opposing players. It is necessary to set a score. The side which makes these points wins the game.


Each guest receives a slip of paper, on which is written the name of a flower. When all are ready to begin, the hostess gives to each a sheet of tissue paper of the color needed to make a designated flower; also two sheets of green paper of different shades.

Thirty minutes are allowed for the making of the flowers. A pair of scissors and a needle and thread must be given to each guest; also some mucilage. The flowers are collected and a committee decides who has made the most perfect flower. The one who has done so receives the bouquet of flowers made by the guests.


The names of animals are given the players. Each receives ten slips of paper numbered from one to ten. These are arranged irregularly in a pile. The slips are turned with the faces downward.

The first player turns up his upper slip so that the number is visible and lays it down in front of him. In doing this, he must turn it away from himself, so that the other players see it first; the next player then does the same.

Should two slips coincide in number, they must each at once call each other's names—the animal names given them. The one who first calls the other's name gives away his slip to that other person, the object being to get rid of one's slips as fast as possible. If the slip turned up by the second player does not correspond in number to that turned up by the first, he also lays it down in front of him; the third player then turns his up, and this is continued around the circle until a slip is turned that corresponds in number with any that has been turned up, when those two players must immediately call each other's names. The winner is the one who first gets rid of his slips.


Any number of players seat themselves at a table. Each player makes a fist of each hand, extending the thumb.

The leader says, "Simon says, 'Thumbs up'!" whereupon he places his own fist on the table before him, with the thumbs upward. The players do likewise. When the leader says, "Simon says, 'Thumbs down'," he turns his own hand over so that the tips of the thumbs touch the table. The others must imitate him.

He then says, "'My thumb wiggles-waggles." He suits the action to the word, and the rest repeat his performance.

If at any time the leader omits the words "Simon says," and goes through the movements only with the words "Thumbs up," "Thumbs down," or "Wigle-waggle," the players must all keep their hands still and not imitate his movements. Any player doing this pays a forfeit.


Each player writes on a piece of paper groups of words, each group descriptive of some author, and each word beginning with one of his initials in regular order. The player who guesses the largest number of authors wins the game.

Example: Who is the just, gentle writer?

Answer: John Greenleaf Whittier.

Whose stories are read alike by old and young?

Answer: James Fennimore Cooper.

Who was the greatest humorist?

Answer: "Mark Twain."


The players are provided with sheets of paper and pencils. They then write a description of some historical character. The object is to give a description that is truthful, yet misleading, in a way, so as to make the guessing a little harder.

One player reads his description. The others ask questions that may be answered by "Yes" and "No." The one guessing correctly reads his description next.


The same syllable is often seen in different words. You can prove this by playing the following game: Each player writes several words on a long strip of paper, leaving spaces between the different words. This having been done the syllables are cut out and shuffled. Each player draws three syllables. The guests seat themselves at small tables, and try to fashion words from the syllables, either using two or three of them. If it is impossible to do this, they must be returned and others are taken in their place. Another trial at word-making is given, and the one who, after a definite time, has made the most words out of his syllables, wins a prize.


One of Shakespeare's plays is selected, and as many questions are arranged in connection with it as the writer can think of. These are given to the players.

Example: About what time of the month were they married?
Answer: Twelfth-Night.

Of whom did they buy the ring?
Answer: Merchant of Venice.

In what kind of a place did they live?
Answer: Hamlet.


Pencils and paper are given the guests, and a subject for the parody is given. This may be a poem or a story, as selected by the hostess. The parodies are collected and read. The company decides which is the best one. To this one a handsome copy of the poem or story is given.


On a large, oblong slate draw with a slate pencil a diagram, as follows: Horizontal lines every two inches across the narrow part of the slate. Pieces of paper are blown over the diagram toward the top of the slate; or beans or pieces of chalk may be substituted for the paper. One of these is called a "chipper." If you use beans, snap them over the diagram with the fingers. Where the "chipper" stops, draw a mark to represent a small round "o." This depicts a man's head. The "chipper," having been returned to the starting point, is again snapped over the diagram. This continues until the player has marked a head in each of the spaces; or should his chipper land a second time in a space in which he has already marked such a head, he makes a larger round "O" under the head, to represent the body of a man. The third time it lands in this place he makes a downward stroke for a leg, and the fourth time, one for a second leg, which completes the man. Should three complete men be so drawn in one space, the player, without shooting again, draws what are called "arms," that is, a horizontal line from the figure across the space to the outside limit. This occupies the space completely and keeps the other players out of it. He continues to play until his "chipper" lands on a line. If this goes beyond the diagram, the player is "out." Each player takes a turn. He can start, or complete men, in any space not occupied with three armed men, even though the former player may have started men in the space or have completed two of them. A player can build only on his own men. The one drawing the largest number of spaces with three armed men is the winner.


Chess is a game which can only be played by two persons at the same time. The requisites are a board consisting of 64 squares of alternate black and white, and 32 pieces of wood, ivory, bone or other composition, which are technically known as "men." The board is so placed between the players that a white square is on the extreme right of each. The "men" are called black and white, there being an equal number of each. One player takes the white and another the black. Each division of 16 is composed of a king (the capture of which is the issue of the game), a queen, 2 rooks or castles, 2 bishops, 2 knights, and 8 pawns. In commencing the game, the rooks are placed on the corner squares, next to them on each side a knight, next to the knights on each side a bishop, and then the king and queen. If white, the queen is placed on the remaining white square, if black, on the remaining black square, and thus both queens face each other. It is the same with the kings. The 8 pawns are placed on each side on the squares immediately in front of the pieces.

The player has the privilege of moving his king into any vacant square adjacent to one he is occupying, provided it is not already taken by a piece belonging to his opponent, but he can go no farther. The queen can be moved in any direction up, down, backwards, forwards, as long as there is no piece to block her. The same can be done with the rook or castle, except that it cannot be moved diagonally—The bishop can only be moved diagonally, in a backward or forward direction. The move of the knight is a combination of the rook's shortest move, followed by the bishop's shortest move. It is not hindered by intervening pawns or pieces. The pawn can only be moved one square at a time, and that in a forward direction. Another pawn in front of it stops its progress. A pawn has the power of capturing an opposite pawn in either of the adjacent squares in advance and diagonally to the right or left of it when it moves into the square of the one captured. The king is never captured. When a piece or pawn attacks him he is said to be in check and the opposite player cries out "Check"! The attacked king is freed from check by moving him to an adjacent square not occupied by a piece or pawn of the opposite side, or else by opposing some piece to defend him from the check. If the player cannot resort to either of these tactics to save his king he is "checkmated" and loses the game.




A lawn tennis court is a plot of level ground about 26 yards by 9 yards, divided into sections. A net standing 3 1/2 feet high is drawn across the middle and attached to two posts outside the court on each side about three feet. The players stand on opposite sides of the net; the one who first delivers the ball is called the server and the other the striker-out. At the end of each game they reverse places. The server wins a stroke if the striker out "volley" the service, that is, he strike the ball before it touches the ground; or if the ball is returned by the striker-out, so that it drops outside his opponent's court, the latter wins the stroke.

The striker-out wins if the server serves two consecutive "faults," which consist in sending the ball to the net or outside the lines; or if the server fail to return the ball in play, the striker-out wins. Either player loses a stroke if the ball touch him in the act of striking, if he touches the ball with his racket more than once, if he touch the net or any of its supports while the ball is in play, or if he "volley" the ball before it has passed the net.

The player winning the first stroke gets a credit score of 15; for the second he gets 30; for the third 40, and if he wins the fourth he has the game. Six games in succession entitle the winner to a Set.

For a three-handed or four-handed game the Court requires to be 12 yards in width. In a three-handed game the single player serves every alternate game. In the four-handed game the pair who have the right to serve in the first game shall decide which partner shall do so and the opposing pair shall decide in like manner for the second game. The partner of the player who served in the first game shall serve in the third, and the partner of the player who served in the second game shall serve in the fourth, and the same order is to be observed in all the succeeding games of the set. If one partner of a double team strikes at a ball and does not touch it, his partner still has the right to return it. A player or different member of a team may strike at a ball as often as he pleases, for it is still in play until hit. The server must wait until the striker-out is ready for the second service as well as the first, and if the striker-out claims to be not ready and makes no effort to return the second service, the server cannot claim the point, even though the service was good. If a player's racket touches the net after the ball has struck the latter he does not loose a point.

The ball is always in play until it has struck the ground outside of the Court or has touched the inside ground twice. A ball is "dead" the instant it strikes the ground outside of the Court, and the point must be scored against the side sending the ball there, no matter what happens after the ball touches the ground.

In selecting a site for a lawn tennis court select a level field. Lay it out north and south, if possible so as to prevent the rays of the sun from blinding the players. The court may, or may not, be grassy. As a general rule, sand courts are preferred. Level the court carefully, so there will be no gradient or inequality in it. To make a foundation, use stones pounded into place, and add top-soil to a depth of seven inches or more. The ground should be often watered and rolled. Sand is usually mixed with clay for a top soil, as the sand is likely to give under the running feet. In the case of a grassy court it should be constantly clipped and in addition rolled once or twice a week to keep the ground hard and even.


Polo is a game played from horseback in a large, level field. There is a goal at each end of the field in the center, the posts ten feet high and 24 feet apart. The teams are generally four a side, but when possible a greater number may play. The regular game in this country for teams of four is of four periods of 15 minutes of actual play each. To win a goal counts one, and the team having the largest score at the end wins the match.

The equipment for the game besides the goal posts (which are generally of wood or papier-mache to prevent serious accidents) are the balls and mallets. The balls are of willow 3 1/8 inches in diameter, and weigh 5 ounces. The mallet sticks are of rattan cane, and from 4 to 4 1/2 feet long, set into square heads beveled at the sides and about 8 inches long and 2 wide. The handles are leather-wrapped to insure a good grip. As to the ponies, no blinkers are used, so that they may have a clear sight of the field. No rowels or spurs are permitted. The animals have to be trained for the purpose.

Each of the four players of a side has certain rules to obey governing his position. It is for Number 1 to watch the opposing back, to ride him off and clear the way for his own side when they have the ball going towards the goal. All his energies must be directed to obtaining a clear field for his side. He requires a fast pony to do the work.

The position of Number 2 is the most independent and the player is called the "flying man" of the team. He must be an adept in "dribbling" out the ball so as to get a fair hit at it. As it comes to him from his side players his part is to race with it, hitting as he gallops, and in this way make the goal if he can.

It is the duty of Number 3 to help his back when the latter is being hard pressed and be ready to exchange places with him when the back gets an opportunity to make a run with the ball.

Number 4 is the real back, for all the others are in front of him and consequently his is the most important position. He must have a shifty pony well trained to riding work. He has to defend the goal, and therefore must be an expert "backhander," that is, quick to send back the ball to the opposing rank when it comes in the direction of his goal. It is the place of the back to knock in when the ball goes over the end line. When he is sure of the half-back player on his side he may go up into the game and make a leading attack himself, but it is nearly always well for him to avoid meeting the ball, for if he misses, the goal is left defenceless.

On the whole, pony polo is an intricate game, and while it is not the sport of kings, it is only adapted to the people of leisure with whom time and money are not an object.


To play hockey a level field is required about 100 yards long and 50 yards wide. The space is marked out in whitewash lines and small flags are placed at each corner. The long lines are called side lines, and the shorter ones goal lines. Across the center, 50 yards from either goal, is the center line. This divides the ground in half. These halves are again equally divided by 25-yard lines. Five yards inside each line is marked a dotted line, parallel with the side line, and which is called the five-yard line.

In the middle of each goal line and 4 yards apart are placed the goal posts, which are uprights 7 feet high, with a horizontal bar from one to the other. Fifteen yards in front of each goal is drawn a line 4 yards long, parallel to the goal line; the ends of this line are brought round in curves to meet the goal line and the space thus inclosed is called the "striking circle."

The stick and balls are the main requisites of hockey. The sticks are made of hickory. The better kind have ash blades and cane handles, such handles giving a spring which sends a clean drive without giving a jar to the hands. The balls used are about the size and weight of the average baseball.

Nowadays it is customary to have nets behind the goal posts, so that it may be definitely determined if there is any dispute whether the ball went clean through between the goal posts or past the outside of either.

Hockey requires 22 players, 11 on each side, consisting of 5 forwards, 3 half-backs, 2 full-backs and a goal-keeper. The center forward stands in the middle of the ground. On her right about 10 yards distant stands the inside right; the right wing stands between the 5-yard line and the side line; the inside left and the left wing stand on the left of the center forward. The half-backs stand 15 yards behind the forward. The center half takes her place directly in line with the center forward; the right half covers the two right forwards, while the left half covers the two left forwards. Behind, on the 25-yard line, stand the fullbacks, right and left; the goalkeeper stands between the goal posts about a foot in front of the goal line.

The two center forwards start the game by "bullying off" the ball in the center of the field; the ball is placed on the center line while the two forwards stand with a foot on either side of the line facing each other and standing square to the side line; then the center halves and left and inside forwards on the blowing of the whistle for the "bully," close up in order to keep watch, each one ready to take the ball should it come in her direction. When one of the center forwards gets the ball she tries to pass it out to either of her own inside players, who endeavors to "dribble" it up the field until she is encountered by an opposition player, at which juncture, by a quick stroke she passes it out to the wing player. It is in this manner, by keeping a straight course and assisted by their halfbacks that the forwards by passing and "dribbling" get the ball into the "striking circle," and when they get it that length it is not a difficult matter to score a goal.


In golf the player strikes a ball in the endeavor to send it to a particular spot. He is not met with opposition in such endeavor, as in other ball games, his opponent having also a ball which he, too, is trying to put into the same spot with fewer strokes. This spot into which the player tries to put his ball is a small hole in the earth about 4-1/4 inches in diameter, and the instruments he uses for doing so are exceedingly varied.

The game commences by a player hitting off from a marked line called the teeing-ground, the ball in the direction of the first hole. In a regular golf course there are generally 18 holes, their distance apart varying from about 100 yards to 500 yards. The smoothly kept grounds near the holes is called the "putting-greens," and beside each "putting-green" is a marked teeing-ground. After the ball has been struck from the "tee" the player must not touch it with his hand until it is driven into the next hole, out of which he may then take it and "tee" it on the teeing ground in a good position for the drive-off to the next hole.

As the holes are widely separated and the ground in many places uneven and broken up, the ball will be driven into many positions, it will lie in the grass, in sand pits or bunkers, and in all kinds of holes and hollows in the rough surface, therefore it will be readily understood that the distance the ball is sent will vary with the stroke. It is to meet the difficulties arising from having to strike the ball in its different positions that so many instruments are called into requisition for the purpose. The names of the chief sticks and implements employed in the sport are: driver, brassie, spoon, cleek, iron, mashie, niblick and putter. The driver, brassie and spoon are wooden-headed clubs, but the others have always iron heads. The driver is the club used for striking to the greatest distance when the ball is on the "tee," that is, on the little mound of sand on which it is placed at the commencement of each hole, so that more facility may be had in striking it. The putter is used on the putting—green, for short strokes round about the holes. The putting—green or ground surrounding each hole is kept level for about a radius of 20 yards from the hole. The different sticks or clubs are graded from driver to putter in accordance with the different lengths of stroke for which they are designed. For instance, the niblick is a short club for taking the ball out of difficult positions ("lies") as when the latter gets into long grass, sand or some other awkward kind of obstruction.

A good driver by well hitting the ball can send it to a distance of about 200 yards from the tee. If the hole be so far off as to require a second stroke of equal length he can use the driver again, provided the ball is on level ground, but it is likely it will not be on such ground for the second stroke, and in such case the brassie or spoon is called on to do service. Each of these instruments has the face that strikes the ball laid back more than in the driver, so that they can lift it more easily off the ground. If the ball gets into a worse position, as a bunker or sandpit, the use of the cleek, iron or niblick will become necessary. The heads of these clubs are adjusted to deal with difficult "lies" that is, positions in which the ball may be driven. The niblick is used for taking it out of especially bad situations.

The stroke called the full swing is used with the driver. There are many other modifications of stroke, such as the three-quarter, the half and the wrist strokes.

As has been said, the issue of the game depends upon sending the ball into the holes with fewer strokes than the opposition. Victory is gained by the side which holes the ball with less strokes. If the sides hole out in the same number of strokes the hole is halved. A match is also won by the side which is leading by a number of holes greater than the number of holes remaining to be played. Thus if Jones has won six holes and Smith four, and seven holes have been halved, Jones, in case the round is the ordinary length of 18 holes, will be two holes up, with only one hole remaining to be played, and therefore he, Jones, wins the match. This is the general manner of playing the game in a match, each player playing his own ball.

In what is known as "score" play the relative merits of several can be tested at the same time. In this kind of play the total score of each player for all of the 18 holes is added up and the player who has the lowest total is declared the winner.


Archery has played an important part in the history of the race from the very earliest times. Primitive man hurled his stone-pointed arrows at wild beasts, and as he advanced to a higher state of the observances of the laws of force he fashioned bows to give a greater impulse to his missiles. For hundreds of years the bow and arrow constituted the principal weapon of the chase, and finally became the instrument of offence and defence for armored knights, warriors and heroes. Robin Hood, roving the wild woods of Merry England, depended upon it for his prowess, as did Allan a Dale and Little John. In the early battles it was the chief weapon, and did effective service. In the battle of Hastings it decided the issue for William the Conqueror; at Agincourt, Crecy and Poitiers victory depended on its use. Skilled archers became famous all over the land, and many were their doughty deeds with the long bow.

In modern time, however, with the introduction of firearms, archery declined, until it came to be but a mere memory of the past. The last century revived it, and to-day it is one of the most popular sports in England. Americans, too, have taken it up with enthusiasm, and clubs are interested in it all over the land, the ladies being especially devoted to it.

In 1879 the first organization of Archery Clubs was formed at Crawfordsville, Indiana, and the first annual target meeting was held in Chicago in the same year.

Bows for archery are generally made out of tough soft wood, such as yew, with a flat outside called the back and a rounded inside called the belly; they are always strung with latter side inward. Lance wood is chiefly used in the United States on account of its resistance to heat. The bow must be easily controlled, and not too heavy. The strain of drawing a heavy bow is apt to pull the bow hand out of the line of sight. A 48-pound bow well drawn and loosed will give a lower trajectory than one of 55 pounds sluggishly handled. By the weight of a bow is not meant its avoirdupois, but the force necessary to draw the arrow to its head on the bow. It is all important to know how to string the bow. Grasp the handle firmly with the right hand, draw it near your right side, while the lower end rests against the inside of the right foot, the back of the bow being toward you. With left foot well extended in front so as to brace the body, rest the left hand on the bow below the loop of the upper end of the string, the tip of the thumb and knuckle of forefinger pressing firmly on opposite edges of the bow. Draw the bow firmly to you with the right hand, while you push down and away from you with the left. A little practice will soon give the knack. No part of the body except the face must be turned towards the target. Stand with the feet at right angles to the direction of the target and have them a few inches apart. In handling the arrow avoid touching the feathers, and in the act of drawing always keep the thumb and fourth finger away from the arrow and string. As the bow is lifted, draw it three parts of the way, catch the aim, complete the draw and instantly loose.

The arrows are an important consideration. Never use a light arrow with a heavy bow, nor, conversely, a heavy arrow with a light bow. Arrows are generally made of one piece of wood, but sometimes a harder kind is used for the part joining the tip and which is dovetailed into the shaft. The tip is formed of steel, and is cylindrical in form. The length varies. A lady's bow of 5 feet calls for a 24-inch arrow, the customary length of men's arrows is 28 inches.

The target is a flat disc about four feet in diameter made from straw and covered with an oilcloth or white sheet painted in concentric rings of gold, red, blue, black and white, each color of which, when penetrated by the arrow counts so many points in the aim. The gold is the objective point of the archer, the "bull's eye," as it is called. Three arrows are shot by each archer in turn, then three more, the six constituting an end. A certain number of ends complete a given range, while two or three ranges form a round. Here is the American round:

30 arrows at 60 yards. 30 arrows at 50 yards. 30 arrows at 40 yards.


This is a very simple game. A stake is driven into the ground for a flagstaff. At a distance of, say nine feet, stakes are arranged as follows: four at equal distances, back of these, at a short distance, three; then two; then one. The setting for nine pins is the same.

Each stake is numbered from ten, beginning on the left hand side, to one hundred, which is the apex of the setting.

Iron rings are tossed from the flagstaff by each player. A score is kept. The one getting the greatest number of points is the winner.


Lawn bowls, although but recently introduced into the United States, is, however, one of the oldest games in existence, and is believed to have been played by the Ancient Greeks and Romans. Scotland has brought this game to its present state of perfection. The game is played as follows:

Select a level lawn, or a floor will answer if this game be played indoors.
Choose sides, giving those of a side, balls of a similar color.

A ball of a third color is called the Jack. The one holding it begins the play by rolling the ball over the lawn. Where it stops is the goal. The others try to strike the Jack. The one doing this is the winner of the game. Or put a nine pin, or nine pins, at a distance from the players, and try to strike as is done in a bowling alley.




The decorations for the room are holly and mistletoe. The guests are attired in white to represent snow, or they may appear in fur-trimmed garments. At midnight all sing "Auld Lang Syne," and shake hands. Calendars are appropriate souvenirs for the occasion. At midnight all wish each other "A Happy New Year."


Give the children pencils and paper. Let them write out their resolutions for the New Year. These may be grave or funny as desired. Give calendars as souvenirs.


Recite poems about Lincoln. Tell stories about him. Explain why "Uncle
Tom's Cabin" is a suitable book to read on this day.

If possible give tableaux suited to the occasion. Those taken from
Uncle Tom's Cabin are eminently suitable.


The evening is opened with the playing of a game of hearts. Each lady receives a red paper heart, and is requested to write her name on the back of it. The hearts are shuffled and put in a bowl; the men's hearts are put in another bowl. A lady chooses a heart from the men's bowl, then a man chooses from the ladies' bowl. The lady is partner for the evening of the man whose heart she drew and vice versa.

Valentines are given, and are read aloud by the recipient. Comic ones are admissible if not vulgar. Valentine mottoes also are given.


A Martha Washington party in costume with a supper in Colonial time style. Dance the Minuet and old-time dances.


This is April Fool's Day. It may be made the occasion of a party. Games suitable to the occasion are played; among them pinning a tail to the picture of a tailless donkey fastened on the wall. This may be drawn by one of the children. Tails are slightly pinned on the children among themselves. April fool candy is served, and glasses are offered which appear to have lemonade in them, but which are so made that no liquor can be drunk from them, etc. The one who is not fooled all evening receives a prize—the funnier it is the better. It may be a "nigger doll" or the like. A donkey is given as a booby prize to the one most often fooled. This fooling can be done in any way which suggests itself.


Color hard-boiled eggs and hide them. Give your little guests pretty baskets and let them hunt for the eggs, or give each a large wooden spoon to spoon them up. If you live in the country roll eggs down hill at one place as a target at the foot of it.

Draw a bunny holding an egg. Pin it to the wall. The one who, blindfolded, succeeds in putting a pin in the egg receives eggs as presents.


Display flags liberally. Tell stories about the American Flag. Sing
"America," "Star-Spangled Banner," etc. Salute "Old Glory."


The usual Hallowe'en tricks are tried such as the following: A ring, a piece of money and a thimble are hidden; the player who finds the ring will be first married, or these articles may be baked in a cake which is cut and distributed. The one getting the money will be prosperous, the getter of the thimble industrious, the getter of the ring will soon be married.


Bobbing for apples. All children like this. In a tub of water several apples float. The children try to capture them with their teeth.


Grease needles and let them float in a bowl of water, upon which tissue paper is laid. Each child has his, or her, own needle. It is amusing to watch the action of the needle when the paper sinks—as it does when it becomes saturated—the needles rush about.


Each person in turn walks downstairs backwards, alone in the dark, with a looking-glass in one hand and a lighted candle in the other. The future husband or wife will be seen—? Or, run around the house three times with your mouth full of water—at midnight.

Melted lead poured into water results in queer figures which sometimes resemble initials; these are supposed to be those of the future husband or wife.

The water charm: put three dishes on a table—one empty, one containing clean water, one soapy water; the blindfolded ones put a finger into one of the dishes, the position of which are changed after the blindfolding. If he puts his finger in clear water a happy marriage will result.


Put a basket on the wall halfway up. The players stand at a distance and throw apples into the basket. A score is kept, the one putting the greatest number of apples into the basket receiving the prize.


This may be held in a barn. The stalls may be draped with bright-colored goods and decorated with greens, or autumn leaves. Japanese lanterns are strung about. Chrysanthemums should be the table flowers. Old-time dances are danced, such as the Virginia Reel, Money Musk, etc. Pumpkin pies, grapes, nuts and cider are served as a part of the collation.


A Kris Kringle party may be taken in the open—in sleighs. The driver is dressed as Kris Kringle. After a sleigh ride in large sleighs drawn by horses decorated to represent reindeer, the party returns to an elaborate Christmas supper.

Christmas songs should be sung, well-known Christmas carols, as "'Tis the Eve of Christmas Day," "Merry Bells," "The Christmas Tree," etc.

Shadow pantomimes are a good form of entertainment for Christmas. They should carry out the idea of the festival. Any of the Merry Games given in the book may be played. The winter games are especially recommended.


Throw ball at a target and keep a score, or build a snow fort and make it the target.


Suspend mistletoe from a chandelier. Let the children in turn guess how many berries are on the suspended bush. The one guessing most correctly wins a prize.

"The Night Before Christmas" is read. As the names are named the children arise and turn around, then sit down again. Santa Claus is mentioned last. When he is spoken of all change seats. The story teller tries to secure a seat. If she succeeds there is an odd player. He must tell a funny story.


Sing and act out the Jack Frost song,—"Jack Frost is a roguish little fellow," etc., etc. The music and words may be obtained at a music store.

Jesus Bids Us Shine. Christmas Is Coming. Christmas Greeting.


Drop melted lead into cold water. It assumes queer shapes. Hallowe'en stories are told.


Peel an apple without breaking the peeling. Throw the skin over your shoulder and see what shape it assumes.

Apples are tied to a string and hung from the chandelier. The boys and girls try to bite these without touching them with their hands.


A pumpkin is scooped out and a candle is placed inside; the light shines through the holes in the pumpkin. Pumpkin favors are given.

All dance around the pumpkin and sing "Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater," etc.


The Christmas dinner is a family reunion, generally; sometimes a friend is invited. If he be a homeless one so much the better. The turkey, of course, is part of the dinner, and pumpkin and mince pies and plum pudding are served, each guest making a choice; rosy-cheeked apples, grapes, nuts and cider form a last course. The Christmas presents may be laid at the plates or may be dispensed from the Christmas tree—preferably the latter.

One of the party impersonates Santa Claus. Yule-tide songs are sung and old-time Christmas games are played. Stockings hung behind curtains and in odd places hold candy, nuts, raisins, etc. These may be made of silk or any pretty material. The guests hunt for these.


Put a very large pumpkin in the center of the room or on a grass plot. The players stand at a distance. Each one runs and jumps over the pumpkin, using both feet. In so doing a score is kept. The one jumping over with both feet together the oftenest wins the pumpkin. Or dance about the pumpkin; when a small child sitting on it claps or whistles all stop. She selects a player with whom she changes place. This game may be played by adults, the player standing near the pumpkin.




Basket Ball is a good form of exercise for women.

Draw a circle on the ground six feet in diameter. A line is drawn across the center. This is the throwing line. A player stands in the circle and throws the basket ball from her line to other lines, the ball scoring according to its landing place.

The lines drawn across the throwing space must be parallel with the throwing line in the circle. For younger girls the lines should be ten, fourteen or twenty feet, according to the age, from the forward edge of the circle.

The players of each team throw in rapid succession. Each player has but one turn, unless the ball strikes some object before touching the ground, when another trial is allowed. At starting a thrower must stand in the circle and toe the throwing line, drawn across the center of the circle. In completing the throw she must not fall or step forward over the outer line of the circle in front of her. If at any part of the throw, from start to finish, the thrower be out of the circle it is considered a foul and does not score, the number of players in the team being counted as one less when the total or average is figured. For each throw to the first line or any point between it and the next line, a team scores one point. For each throw to the second line or between it and the next line a team scores three points. For each throw to or beyond the third line, a team scores five points. The team averaging or adding the largest score wins first place in the game. There are other forms of basket ball games, where girls throw balls into baskets fastened at a given height.


Boxes are placed on the floor or ground in a row. The players in line stand at a distance from these, each player facing a box. The play is begun at the right of the line and each tries to toss her ball into the box. When one succeeds in doing this, all run except the one into whose box the ball fell. She picks up the ball, and tries to throw it so as to strike one of the players (of course a soft ball is used). If she fails a stone is put into her box. The game is continued by the same player, but she tries to throw her ball into another box. If she strikes a player with her ball, the one who is struck receives a stone, and she then starts to throw her ball. The game is continued as above. When a player has five stones she goes out of the game.


Use a soft ball. The players form in line. One stands before them, with back turned, at a distance of several feet. This player counts up to a certain number, as the ball passes back and forth along the line; as a certain number is called, the holder of the ball throws it so as to strike one of the players. If this player is hit, she turns suddenly and tries to guess by the attitude of the players which one threw the ball. If she guesses correctly, she goes to the front. If the ball misses, the thrower changes places with the one she aimed at.


There are so many variations of this game that it is impossible to describe them all. A target is placed and the balls are thrown at it; or several targets at different distances may be aimed at by the players. A score is kept. The one getting the greatest number of points wins the game. Or sides may be formed.


This game is played with balls and Indian clubs—half as many as there are players. Bean bags may be used instead of balls. A score is decided upon, and an umpire keeps the record. Each player, in throwing, tries to knock down a club, and this club counts for one or more, up to the number decided upon by the players.


The players stand in a circle around the ball, which is hung by a string—in the open—from the branch of a tree. A player tries to strike it with her hand. Another tries to catch it before she strikes it again. If the ball is not caught the player scores one. She plays until it is caught. Each has a turn.




Draw a large circle; intersect this with lines like the spokes of a wheel, dividing it into twelve sections, and number them.

Put a blindfolded player in the center for a hub, and turn him about a number of times, as is done in "Blindman's Buff." He then walks about. The number of the space he stops upon, after repeating a silly verse to the end, is put upon his score card. If he goes outside the circle, even with one foot, he receives no points.

The player who gets the greatest number of points in a given time, wins the game.


The mother stands before her children. One asks: "Mother, may I go out to play?" "No," says the mother, "it is a very wet day."

"See, mother, the sun shines."

"Well, be off," says the mother; "but make three courtesies before you go."

The child then does this, the other children doing the same. They all run off and return.

"Why did you run so far?" says the mother. "Where did you go, and what have you been doing all this time?"

"Brushing Mary's hair," says the first player.

"What did she give you for so doing?"

"A silver penny."

"Where's my share of it?"

"The cat ran away with it."

"Where's the cat?"

"In the wood."

"Where's the wood?"

"Fire burnt it."

"Where's the fire?"

"Water quenched it."

"Where's the water?"

"Moo cow drank it."

"Where's the moo cow?"

"Sold it for a silver penny."

"What did you do with the money?"

"Bought nuts with it."

"What did you do with them?"

"You can have the nut shells, if you like."

The last words being rude, the mother chases the child or children, according to the manner in which the game is played. She asks as she does this, "Where's my money?"

The one addressed answers, "You may have the nut shells."

The mother tries to catch one or more of the children to inflict punishment. The punishments are usually funny acts of some kind.


All but two players form a ring, and clasp hands. The garden is enclosed by the players. One of the odd players will be the scamp; another player is the gardener. He moves around outside of the circle, and says, "Who let you into my garden?" The scamp replies, "No one," and starts to run. The gardener follows his lead in and out among the players, who lift their hands to allow this. If the scamp be caught he becomes the gardener.

The scamp can lead the gardener a lively chase, for he can play leap frog, or turn somersaults, if he so desires. The gardener must imitate him.


The players face each other in two lines, the leader being in the center. When he says, "Do this," they obey, and when he quickly follows his first order by saying, "Do that," the "that" being another act, they must again obey at once. If any one is slow, he must exchange places with the leader. The fun of the game depends upon the antics of the one in the ring.


This is an instructive game, as it teaches children direction. Each child represents a point of the compass—north, south, east, west. When a leader calls: "Which way does the wind blow?" a child of whom this is asked, points either to the north, south, east or west, according to the name given him.


Two parties play this game. They stand at a distance apart. The players represent flowers. The first one in the line walks to the opposite line, and asks of the first one: "What flower am I?" Saying this, the flower is ready to run for the wind. An odd player stands ready to give chase, if the guesser does not guess correctly. The wind, of course, is told the names of the different flowers. Each player has a turn.


One player is blindfolded, and turned about three times, in the center of the room. He tries to catch one of the other players. If he succeeds, he takes off the handkerchief and puts it upon the one touched.

In one form of "Blind Man's Buff," the blindfolded one must guess the name of the one he catches before he can remove the handkerchief.


In this game the players are numbered, and one is blindfolded. Two numbers are called out. The ones so numbered run, and the blindfolded one tries to catch one of them, or they may run one at a time. If the one in the center catches another, he takes that one's place.


The players dance around the blindfolded one until he touches a player with his wand. When he does this, all stand still. The one in the center may ask three questions of the one touched. He, replying, disguises his voice. If the blindfolded one succeeds in guessing whom he questioned, he exchanges places with him.


A player hides, the others seek him. Or any object may be hidden in an out-of-the-way place, and this is to be found by a player. When he succeeds in doing this, the handkerchief is taken from his eyes (if one is used). Each child has a turn in finding the article, the place of hiding being changed each time for the new finder.


The leader walks before a line of players and performs ridiculous acts which all must imitate. If any player fails to do this, he or she is out of the game. The leader may make the players perform feats like jumping over high places, turning somersaults, climbing, etc., if the players are boys. If among the players there are girls, the feats, of necessity, must not be too hard.


The children are required to perform certain acts or pay a forfeit. These acts are decided upon by a committee before the guests, or players, assemble. A few feats may be suggested, such as the rabbit hop, leap frog, picking up a stick with the teeth while in a kneeling position, etc., or the player may be required to repeat "Peter Piper," or any ridiculous verses quickly. If he does not succeed in doing what is required of him, he must—if he is a boy—turn a somersault. If the player is a girl, she pays a forfeit or stands with her face to a corner.


The players form two sides; those on one side are "masters," the others "men." Trades are represented, and the men aim to keep working so that the masters will not take their places. The tradesmen go through the motions of their trade. The master must guess the trade. When he does, he exchanges place with the one whose trade he guessed.


Wooden gymnastic wands are used, half as many as there are players. Draw a line across the room or grass; divide the players into two divisions, one on each side of the line, each player facing his opponent. These grasp each other's wand, and at a signal begin to tug, but they must not put foot into the opponent's territory. If they do the struggle ceases. The side wins which secures the greatest number of wands.


In the "Catch and Pull Tug of War," a ring is formed by joining hands and standing in a circle, and all tug to break the ring.


A player takes his stand in the center of the room. The others stand in couples a few feet apart. They march around the girl or boy in the center. When the music stops suddenly, one player of each pair goes to the one in front of him. While they do this, the one in the center tries to secure a place.


The players stand in two lines. The players of one line, at a signal, throw the balls to those opposite them. They then turn and throw against the wall, if the game is played indoors.


The object of this game is to train the perceptions, the muscular sense, and the muscles themselves. The weight of the ball is suited to the players. The two-pound weights are used for girls.

The couples are far enough apart to allow space for full play. One of each couple has a ball for himself and his partner. The throwing of the balls to one of the opposite side is simultaneous, when a leader gives the command.


In this game the children are seated. A line is drawn near the wall, and two lines are drawn to form an aisle. Then the children decide upon the manner of throwing the ball. This may be done with either hand. The leader stands opposite his aisle on the line. At a signal the first player in each row runs to the mark in his aisle. When he has reached it, the leader, in the way previously agreed upon, throws him the ball, which he catches and returns. He runs back to his seat. This is repeated by each player. Then the leader, seating himself, places the ball before him on the floor, or if in the open, on the ground. All assume position. The first row doing this at a signal, scores a point. This is repeated fifteen times. The row which assumes position promptly the greatest number of times win the game.


The players are named for an object on a train, as smoke-stack, boiler, baggage car, wheels, conductor, etc. One player is the train master. He says: "We must hurry up and make up a train to go to New York City at once. It is a special. We will take engine Number 21, some coal and wood; the bell must be in good order, and the carpet must be swept; the cushions dusted; the beds in the sleeper must be made up, etc." When these objects are named, the players run up to the starter when their names are given, each one putting his hands on the shoulder of the one before him, the first one having put his hands upon the starter in the same way. When all are in line, the train starts, after the signal, which is a bell. The starter may imitate the noises a locomotive makes as it starts out on its journey. He leads up hill and down dale, and the line must remain unbroken. The one who breaks the line pays a forfeit or is out of the game. The line being mended, continues its journey.


Stools are placed close together to form a circle, and all the players seat themselves, facing inwards, except one player, who stands in the center. He tries to secure the seat that has been left vacant. This is difficult, because the players on the stools keep moving to the right from one stool to the next, so that the location of the vacant seat varies. When the player in the center secures a seat, the one at his left goes into the center. If more than thirty are playing, it is better to have two vacant stools and two players in the center.


The leader holds a pebble between the palms of his hands. The others are grouped about him, each with hands extended, palm to palm. The leader then passes his hands between those of the players. No one can tell where he leaves the pebble, until some one guesses where it is. Each player has a turn. The one receiving the pebble is chased by the others. If he succeeds in getting to the leader and giving the pebble to him before he is caught, he can return to his place; otherwise he changes place with the leader.


The players, being divided into two lines, stand facing each other, with a distance of about twelve feet between them. The lines pair off, and take hold of hands all along the line.

A dialogue takes place between the lines, the players in a line speaking in unison. As this is done, they swing their arms and rock backward and forward from one foot to another, keeping time to the rhythm of the words, as follows:

"How many miles to Babylon?"

"Three score and ten."

"Will we be there by candle light?"

"Yes, and back again."

"Open your gates and let us through."

"Not without a beck (courtesy) and a boo (bow)."

"Here's a beck and here's a boo, Here's a side and here's a sou; Open your gates and let us through."

All the players in the first line say: "Here's a beck and here's a boo," as they suit the action to the word. As they do so, they also drop hands and each makes a courtesy, with hands at the hips for the "beck," and straighten up and make a deep bow forward for the "boo"; assuming an upright attitude, then, and bending the head sideways to the right for "Here's a side," and to the left for "Here's a sou."

The partners clasp hands, and all run forward ten steps, keeping time with the rhythm of the words. Then all pass under the upraised hands, which represent the city gates. This is done in four running steps, making twelve steps in all. The couples who made the gate then turn around in four running steps, until they face the first line, when they repeat the dialogue as given above, etc.


Corners are selected by some of the players; the others remain in the center of the room. The puss in a corner calls to the other puss in a corner, "Puss, puss," and they try to get to each other's corner before these can be taken by the others.

When this is played outdoors, trees or the corners in a fence may be utilized as were the corners of a room.




The hostess cuts pictures into four parts and mixes them in a box, or loosely places them in the center of a table. Then each guest takes four and puts them together as a picture. The effect is very funny at times. Some of the children's picture blocks may be used for this game, using four sets at a time.


The girl or boy host gives each guest, on a slip of paper, the beginning of a quotation. All go about the room looking for the end of the quotations, which are hidden in different places in the room; or, if older children are playing this game, pencils and paper are given them, and they write the full quotation.


A penny party furnishes amusement for an evening. With the invitations is sent a request for each guest to bring a penny, not for an admission fee, but for use. For each guest there are provided two cards and a pencil; one card is blank; the other has a list of the things to be found on a penny. The list is numbered, and each person is expected to name as many as he can, prizes being awarded for the best and poorest list.

Find— 1. Top of hill. 2. Place of worship. 3. An animal. 4. A fruit. 5. A common fruit. 6. Links between absent friends. 7. Union of youth and old age. 8. A vegetable. 9. Flowers. 10. What we fight for. 11. Metal. 12. A messenger. 13. A weapon of defense. 14. A weapon of warfare. 15. A body of water. 16. A beverage. 17. What young ladies want. 18. The most popular State. 19, What men work for. 20. Sign of royalty. 21. A jolly dog.

The answers are: 1. Brow. 2. Temple. 3. Hare (hair). 4. Date. 5. Apple. 6. Letters. 7. 1894 (The date of the penny). 8. Ear. 9. Tulips (two lips). 10. Liberty. 11. Copper. 12. One cent (sent). 13. Shield. 14. Arrow. 15. Sea (c). 16. Tea (t). 17. Beau (bow). 18. United States (matrimony). 19. Money. 20. Crown. 21. A merry cur (America).

Usually a half hour is allowed for filling out the blank cards, and after that some time for correcting the lists and awarding prizes.


This is a form of entertainment always liked by the younger children. It can be made amusing, as well as instructive, by having those representing the show to take the part of dolls of the different nations. When the invitations are sent out, it should be specified what part each little guest will take. Some of the guests may be the audience if they prefer, or adults may be the on-lookers. Each little guest receives a doll as a souvenir.

Another form of doll party is where the children bring dolls dressed by themselves. The doll whose gown is most neatly made receives a prize.

There may also be dolls made of beets, carrots, potatoes, tomatoes, etc., by using sticks, cloves, etc., with the vegetables named. The results are very funny. These are put on exhibition on the table and an umpire decides for which prizes are to be given.


The little hostess or host selects two leaders. These choose sides. Two large rugs are placed near together on the floor. A bowl of peanuts is placed in the center of each. The little players which can soonest dispose of their peanuts two inches apart on their rug, are the winners. The hostess gives the signal at the beginning and end of the contest. The sides may work simultaneously or singly, according as the game is played, individually or by sides as a whole. The peanuts are eaten at the end of the game, and a prize of a box of candy is given the winning side or child. This is passed about to the guests.


Some peanuts must be secretly hidden in out-of-the-way places—in bric-a-brac, etc. Give a pretty bag or box to be used as a receptacle for the peanuts, and then the hunt begins. The one getting the most peanuts, receives a prize. He may eat all the peanuts he finds, after the contest is decided, but a lesson in unselfishness is here possible. The hostess may suggest sharing the peanuts with one who tried hard to find many nuts, but did not succeed; or, if there be a lame child, or one deformed, he or she should receive some of the nuts of the winners, and of those the others find.


The invitations have peanuts painted on them, so have little menu cards, which are placed at each plate at the table. These designs are often funny, and even grotesque, as they represent brownies, etc. Peanuts are strung as necklaces, bracelets, etc. Some of the sandwiches are made of mashed peanuts—called peanut butter—and they are delicious. Peanut candy is served, and at the end peanuts are jabbed for with hat pins. For this all gather at different little tables, or turns are taken at one table, the peanuts being piled up in the center. A box of candy is given the winner. This he or she, of course, passes among the guests.


This may be made not only enjoyable, but charitable as well. Tables holding fancy work—preferably the work of the children—candies (home-made), groceries, aprons, pen-wipers, iron-holders, hand-painted cards, capes, etc., etc., may be sold. Rebecca sits at the Well—a well of lemonade. A grab-bag, an orange tree, with saleable parcels on it. A post-office, where letters are sold, and finally a refreshment table or tables, the little girls and boys serving as waiters, in costumes.


Making bubbles requires no great effort of the mind or body. Clay pipes for the players are furnished by the hostess. Bowls are filled with water which is quite soapy. The pipes show the colors of the side or sides, being tied with ribbons of different colors. The game contest may be decided in two ways. Either the one who makes the largest bubble is winner, or the one making the most bubbles in a given time. The sides or individuals may play in turn.


A pop-corn party, of necessity, like a candy pull, must be held in the kitchen. This can be decorated for the occasion. Each little guest brings an apron to be donned before the "popping" begins.

First, shell the corn. Second, take a dipper full of corn and "pop" it. This popping is done in a pan over a clear fire.

Third, divide into parts, when done.

Fourth, sprinkle some with cochineal, if pink corn is desired.

Fifth, string the pop-corn on threads. A needle is used to do this.
Necklaces, bracelets, and boys' chains may be so made.

Each child receives a handsome cornucopia or box as a receptacle for his popcorn.


Candy ready to pull may be bought at a candy store, or molasses may be boiled at home until it is ready to pull, when the hands are greased and the pulling begins. As suggested for a pop-corn party, the kitchen or dining-room is the best place in which to give a party of this kind. It may be decorated to look well, and the children doubtless would enjoy their play here more than in the parlor.


This may be of dolls or real babies. You can borrow the babies for the occasion. A committee decides which is the handsomest baby, which the best-natured, etc. Rattiers, toys, etc., are given the babies, or you can have your parents and other lady friends take the part of babies. Put a bib on them when they go to supper.


The little players sit or stand round the room in a circle. The leader assigns to each some musical instrument, as harp, flute, violincello, trombone, etc., and also selects one for himself. Some well-known tune is then given out, say "Yankee Doodle," and the players all begin to play accordingly, each doing his best to imitate, both in sound and action, the instrument which has been assigned to him, the effect being generally extremely harmonious. The leader commences with his own instrument, but without any warning suddenly ceases, and begins instead to perform on the instrument assigned to one of the players. Such player is bound to notice the change, and forthwith to take the instrument just abandoned by the leader, incurring a forfeit if he fails to do so.


The fun of this game depends on a fair proportion of the players not being acquainted with it. The leader begins, addressing the first player, "I have a cook who doesn't like peas (p's); what will you give her for dinner?" The person addressed, if acquainted with the secret, avoids the letter p in his answer, and, for example, says, "I will give her some walnuts." The question is then asked of the second person, who, if unacquainted with the trick, is likely enough to offer some delicacy which contains the letter p; e.g., potatoes, asparagus, pork, apple-pie, pickled cabbage, peanuts, etc., etc. When this occurs, the offender is called upon to pay a forfeit, but the precise nature of his offense is not explained to him. He is simply told, in answer to his expostulations, that "the cook doesn't like p's." When a sufficient number of forfeits has been extracted, the secret is revealed, and those who have not already guessed it, are teased by being told (over and over again) that the cook did not like p's, and if they would persist in giving them to her, they must, of course, take the consequences.


One player is sent from the room. The others decide upon something for him to do, but he is not told what it is, though he is helped by a noise of some kind on metal, or on a musical instrument. When he is near an object with which he is to perform some feat, the noise is loud. If he touches the wrong object, the music is soft. Any one of the musical instruments commonly used by children may be employed in this game.


The leader says: "Of what animal am I thinking?" He tells that the animal has a certain number of legs, and gives other points of a like nature. From this description the guessing is done. When a player guesses the animal correctly, he scores a point. Each player has a turn. The game is played until it loses its interest.




The bags are thrown at targets. A score is made out. A prize is given the one getting the best score.

Throwing the bean bag over the head is another form of Bean Bag Game. It must be caught by one standing back of the tosser. The one who catches it becomes the tosser.


This game consists of tosses of the bean bag into boxes. The player stands at a distance. The one being successful in his throws the most times is the winner.


An equal number of players out of doors. Two parties are formed, divided by eight or ten feet of space. The umpire gives a signal, and a player in one line runs to the other side—half way, and tosses his bag to the one at the end of the line; he then takes his place next to this one, and the line moves down.

This is continued, opposite sides taking turns. Then the game is reversed, until the player who first played is in his original place.


A bean bag is placed on the ground and another at some distance from it. Two players, at a given signal, run to these bags. The one who can catch the bag and get to the staff placed near the umpire is the winner. Sides may be scored instead of the individual players.


At the seashore stones or blocks of wood may be substituted for the bags. A ring is drawn on the ground and the players take sides. The leader of each side toes a starting line across the ground at a distance from the circle. Bean bags or stones are thrown into the center of this, each one having a turn.

The side getting the biggest score is the winning one.


Skipping the rope is an admirable exercise for girls and boys. There should be a spring in doing this. When a jumper comes down on his heels, instead of jumping from his toes, he is apt to make the skipping injurious by jarring his back. The players jump in turn over a long rope turned by two of the players. Each has a turn. A score is kept of the number of times a player can do this. Sides may be formed, or the jumpers may see how many times they can jump over the rope in succession.


The chaser tries to tag the runners before they can "get home," or to a given place. If he succeeds, the one tagged is "It."


Is played by not telling who is "It." He chases the other players and tries to tag one of them. If he succeeds, the one who was tagged becomes "It."


In this game the one tagged must place his hand on the spot of his body where the tagger tagged him; doing this, he must chase the other players until he tags one of them.


This is a favorite game with little children.

A place is marked off and named "The Brook"—we will say it is three feet wide.

The players run and try to jump the brook. When all have jumped over, they stand and jump backwards. The one who jumps into the brook instead of across it is out of the game.




This is a very noisy game. The conductor names his players for instruments, and tells them in pantomime how to play. He then orders them to tune up. They do so, producing a terrible discord. Then the baton is waved by the conductor, and the musicians imitate the sounds of their instruments, while also imitating the movements assigned them by the conductor. The result is very funny.


A player becomes "Charlie." He stands in the center; the others form a circle about him, and dance, repeating the rhyme:

  "Charlie over the water,
  Charlie over the sea,
  Charlie caught a black-bird,
  He can't catch me."

When the verse is ended, all the players try to stop before Charlie can tag them. If they succeed in doing this, Charlie remains in the ring and the verse is repeated, etc. The tagged one takes his place and he enters the ring.


  "Jack, be nimble,
  Jack, be quick,
  Jack jumped over the candlestick."

A candlestick is placed on the floor. The players in turn jump over it, using both feet in so doing. Any other object may be substituted for the candlestick. One of the players sings the verse and when the last line is reached the jump is made.


This is a great favorite with the young folks. When everything else has become tiresome, some one starts the first line of the verse:

  Mary had a little lamb,
  Fleece as white as snow, etc.

All sing, and on the second verse being reached the last syllable of the first line is dropped, then the next to the last, the third, the fourth, and so on, until the line is totally omitted. The aim of the singers is to keep exact time, counting a beat for each omitted syllable, and any one whose voice breaks in when all should be silent, pays a forfeit. The same can be done with "John Brown's Body," repeating the first verse and omitting syllable after syllable at the end of the first line until there is nothing left to sing but the chorus.


Holding hands, the children form a line, singing the following words; they wind up in a spiral, following the first child, who is the largest one, and represents the snail's head. The others huddle together to form the shell into which the snail creeps. The motion is slow, for the saying "creeps like a snail," is proverbial.

  Hand in hand you see us well,
  Creep like a snail into his shell,
  Ever nearer, ever nearer,
  Ever closer, ever closer.
  Very snug indeed you dwell,
  Snail, within your tiny shell.
  Hand in hand you see us well,
  Creep like a snail out of his shell,
  Ever farther, ever farther,
  Ever wider, ever wider,
  Who'd have thought this tiny shell,
  Could have held the snail so well?

With the last verse the creeping out of the shell is accomplished.


A circle is formed. One player stands in the center. After singing the first four lines, all drop their hands. After this they imitate the motions suggested by the song. At the end of the verse they turn around several times, and then, joining hands, sing the chorus, standing still, for the last two lines. Then the one in the center chooses "one in," and returns herself to the circle. The game goes on as before.

  Oats, peas, beans and barley grows,
  Oats, peas, beans and barley grows,
  Nor you nor I nor nobody knows,
  How oats, peas, beans and barley grows,

Thus the farmer sows his seed, Thus he stands and takes his ease, Stamps his foot and clasps his hands, And turn around to view his lands.

A-waiting for a partner, A-waiting for a partner, So open the ring and choose one in, Make haste and choose your partner.

  Now you're married you must obey.
  You must be true to all you say.
  You must be kind, you must be good,
  And keep your wife in kindling wood.


The players stand in a circle clasping hands, and circle round, singing the first verse. In the second and alternate verses, the action indicated by the lines is given in pantomime. In all verses the players spin around rapidly, each in her own place, on the repetition of the refrain, "So early in the morning."

  Here we go round the mulberry bush,
  The mulberry bush, the mulberry bush,
  Here we go round the mulberry bush,
  So early in the morning!

  This is the way we wash our clothes,
  We wash our clothes, we wash our clothes,
  This is the way we wash our clothes,
  So early Monday morning.

  This is the way we iron our clothes,
  We iron our clothes, we iron our clothes,
  This is the way we iron our clothes,
  So early Tuesday morning.

  This is the way we scrub the floor,
  We scrub the floor, we scrub the floor,
  This is the way we scrub the floor,
  So early Wednesday morning.

  This is the way we mend our clothes,
  We mend our clothes, we mend our clothes,
  This is the way we mend our clothes,
  So early Thursday morning.

  This is the way we sweep the house,
  We sweep the house, we sweep the house,
  This is the way we sweep the house,
  So early Friday morning.

  Thus we play when our work is done,
  Our work is done, our work is done,
  Thus we play when our work is done,
  So early Saturday morning.


All the players but one stand in a circle with clasped hands; the odd player, carrying a handkerchief, runs around on the outside of the circle, singing:

  Itiskit, itasket,
  A green and yellow basket;
  I wrote a letter to my love
  And on the way I dropped it.
  Some one of you has picked it up
  And put it in your pocket;
  It isn't you—it isn't you—

The last phrase is repeated until the player reaches one behind whom he wishes to drop the handkerchief, when he says, "It is you," and immediately starts on a quick run around the circle. The one behind whom the handkerchief was dropped picks it up and at once starts around the circle in the opposite direction, the object being to see which of the two shall first reach the vacant place. The one who is left out takes the handkerchief for the next round.

Should a circle player fail to discover that the handkerchief has been dropped behind him until the one who has dropped it has walked or run entirely around the circle, he must yield his place in the circle to the handkerchief man, changing places with him.


The players stand in a circle. One of their number is in the center. He is the farmer in the dell. At the singing of the second verse, where the farmer takes a wife, the center player beckons to another, who goes in and stands by her. The circle keeps moving while each verse is sung, and each time the player last called in beckons to another; that is, the wife beckons one into the circle as the child, the child beckons one for the nurse, etc., until six are standing in the circle. When the lines, "The rat takes the cheese," are sung, the players inside the circle and those forming it jump up and down and clap their hands in a grand confusion, and the game breaks up.

  The farmer in the dell,
  The farmer in the dell,
  Heigh-o! the cherry-oh!
  The farmer in the dell.

  The farmer takes a wife,
  The farmer takes a wife,
  Heigh-o! the cherry-oh!
  The farmer takes a wife.

  The wife takes a child,
  The wife takes a child,
  Heigh-o! the cherry-oh!
  The wife takes a child.

  The child takes a nurse, etc.
  The nurse takes a cat, etc.
  The cat takes a rat, etc.
  The rat takes the cheese, etc.

The succeeding verses vary only in the choice in each, and follow in this order.


  The King of France with forty thousand men
  Marched up the hill and then marched down again.

The players stand in two rows or groups facing each other. Each group has a leader, who stands in the center and represents a king leading his army.

The game or play is a simple one of imitation, in which the players perform in unison some action first indicated by one of the leaders.

The leaders of the two groups take turns in singing the verse, at the same time marching forward during the first line of the verse, and back again to their places during the second line, illustrating the action that is then to be taken by all. The verse is then sung by both groups while advancing toward each other and retreating, performing the movements indicated by the leaders. The movements illustrated by the leaders may be anything suitable to an army of men, the words describing the movement being substituted for the line, "marched up the hill," thus:

The King of France with forty thousand men Waved his flag and then marched down again.

The following variations are suggested, each of which indicates the movements to go with it:

  Gave a salute, etc.
  Beat his drum, etc.
  Blew his horn, etc.
  Drew his sword, etc.
  Aimed his gun, etc.
  Fired his gun, etc.
  Shouldered arms, etc.
  Pranced on his horse, etc.

It is scarcely necessary to say that a real flag and drum add much to the martial spirit of the game, and if each soldier can have a stick or wand over his shoulder for a gun, the esprit de corps will be proportionately enhanced.


  London bridge is falling down,
  Falling down, falling down.
  London bridge is falling down,
  My fair lady!

  Build it up with iron bars,
  Iron bars, iron bars,
  Build it up with iron bars,
  My fair lady!

  Iron bars will bend and break,
  Bend and break, bend and break,
  Iron bars will bend and break,
  My fair lady!

  Build it up with gold and silver, etc.
  Gold and silver will be stolen away, etc.
  Get a man to watch all night, etc.
  Suppose the man should fall asleep? etc.
  Put a pipe into his mouth, etc.
  Suppose the pipe should fall and break, etc.
  Get a dog to bark all night, etc.
  Suppose the dog should meet a bone? etc.
  Get a cock to crow all night, etc.
  Here's a prisoner I have got, etc.
  What's the prisoner done to you? etc.
  Stole my hat and lost my keys, etc.
  A hundred pounds will set him free, etc.
  A hundred pounds he has not got, etc.
  Off to prison he must go, etc.

Two of the tallest players represent a bridge by facing each other, clasping hands, and holding them high for the others to pass under. The other players, in a long line, each holding the other by the hand or dress, pass under the arch while the verses are sung alternately by the players representing the bridge and those passing under, those forming the arch singing the first and alternate verses and the last "Off to prison." As the words

"Here's a prisoner I have got,"

are sung, the players representing the bridge drop their arms around the one who happens to be passing under at the time. The succeeding verses are then sung to "Off to prison he must go." During this last one the prisoner is led off to one side to a place supposed to be a prison, and is there asked in a whisper or low voice to choose between two valuable objects, represented by the two bridge players, who have previously agreed which each shall represent, such as a "diamond necklace" or a "gold piano." The prisoner belongs to the side which he thus chooses. When all have been caught the prisoners line up behind their respective leaders (who have up to this time been the holders of the bridge), clasp each other around the waist, and a tug of war takes place, the side winning which succeeds in pulling its opponent across a given line.

Where a large number of players are taking part, say over ten, the action may be made much more rapid and interesting by forming several spans or arches to the bridge instead of only one, and by having the players run instead of walk under. There is thus much more activity for each player, and the prisoners are all caught much sooner.


This is a Spanish game. A player represents the moon; the rest are stars. The moon is placed in the shadow of a tree or house.

The morning stars dance about a child, standing on a chair with extended arms, to represent the sun just risen. The stars dance around the sun, occasionally going quite near the moon; while doing this, they sing

  O moon and morning stars,
  O the moon and morning stars
  Who dares to tread—oh,
  Within the shadow?

The moon tries to catch a star, and the one caught becomes the moon.


Two to forty players. The leader recites:

  I'm a wee Bologna Man;
  Always do the best you can
  To follow the wee Bologna Man.

While doing this he imitates an instrument of an orchestra. The others imitate him.

This game may be varied, the Bologna man imitating animals or birds, or making any sound he wishes to make, or he can hop and croak like a frog, or imitate the motions and noise of an angry cat, or the like.


This game is played in groups of four. Two players face each other, clasping hands at full arms' length. The other two face each other in the same way, with their arms crossing those of the first couple at right angles. Bracing the feet, the couples sway backward and forward, singing the following rhyme:

  Draw a bucket of water,
  For my lady's daughter.
  One in a rush,
  Two in a rush,
  Please, little girl, bob under the bush.

When the last line is sung the players all raise their arms without unclasping the hands, and place them around their companions, who stoop to step inside. They will then be standing in a circle with arms around each other's waists. The game finishes by dancing in this position around the ring, repeating the verse once more.




Ask any person to think of a number, say a certain number of dollars; tell him to borrow that sum of some one in the company, and add the number borrowed to the amount thought of. It will here be proper to name the person who lends him the money, and to beg the one who makes the calculation to do it with great care, as he may readily fall into an error, especially the first time. Then say to the person: "I do not lend you, but give you $10; add them to the former sum." Continue in this manner: "Give the half to the poor, and retain in your memory the other half." Then add: "Return to the gentleman, or lady, what you borrowed, and remember that the sum lent you was exactly equal to the number thought of." Ask the person if he knows exactly what remains; he will answer "Yes". You must then say: "And I know also the number that remains; it is equal to what I am going to conceal in my hand." Put into one of your hands 5 pieces of money, and desire the person to tell how many you have got. He will answer 5; upon which open your hand and show him the 5 pieces. You may then say: "I well knew that your result was 5; but if you had thought of a very large number, for example, two or three millions, the result would have been much greater, but my hand would not have held a number of pieces equal to the remainder." The person then supposing that the result of the calculation must be different, according to the difference of the number thought of, will imagine that it is necessary to know the last number in order to guess the result; but this idea is false, for, in the case which we have here supposed, whatever be the number thought of, the remainder must always be 5. The reason of this is as follows: The sum, the half of which is given to the poor, is nothing else than twice the number thought of, plus 10; and when the poor have received their part, there remains only the number thought of plus 5; but the number thought of is cut off when the sum borrowed is returned, and consequently there remains only 5. The result may be easily known, since it will be the half of the number given in the third part of the operation; for example, whatever be the number thought of, the remainder will be 36 or 25, according as 72 or 50 have been given. If this trick be performed several times successively, the number given in the third part of the operation must be always different; for if the result were several times the same, the deception might be discovered. When the five first parts of the calculation for obtaining a result are finished, it will be best not to name it at first, but to continue the operation, to render it more complex, by saying for example: "Double the remainder, deduct two, add three, take the fourth part," etc.; and the different steps of the calculation may be kept in mind, in order to know how much the first result has been increased or diminished. This irregular process never fails to confound those who attempt to follow it.


Tell the person to take 1 from the number thought of, and then double the remainder; desire him to take 1 from this double, and to add to it the number thought of, in the last place, ask him the number arising from this addition, and, if you add 3 to it, the third of the sum will be the number thought of. The application of this rule is so easy that it is needless to illustrate it by an example.


Ask the person to add 1 to the triple of the number thought of, and to multiply the sum by three; then bid him add to this product the number thought of, and the result will be a sum from which if 3 be subtracted, the remainder will be ten times the number required; and if the cipher on the right be cut off from the remainder, the other figure will indicate the number sought.

Example—Let the number thought of be 6, the triple of which is 18; and if 1 be added, it makes 19; the triple of this last number is 57, and if 6 be added it makes 63, from which if 3 be subtracted, the remainder will be 60; now, if the cipher on the right be cut off, the remaining figure, 6, will be the number required.


Tell the person to multiply the number thought of by itself; then desire him to add 1 to the number thought of, and to multiply it also by itself; in the last place, ask him to tell the difference of these two products, which will certainly be an odd number, and the least half of it will be the number required.

Let the number thought of, for example, be 10; which, multiplied by itself, gives 100; in the next place, 10 increased by 1 is 11; which, multiplied by itself makes 121; and the difference of these two squares is 21, the least half of which, being 10, is the number thought of.


If one or more numbers thought of be greater than 9, we must distinguish two cases; that in which the number or the numbers thought of is odd, and that in which it is even. In the first case, ask the sum of the first and second; of the second and third; the third and fourth; and so on to the last; and then the sum of the first and the last. Having written down all these sums in order, add together all those, the places of which are odd, as the first, the third, the fifth, etc.; make another sum of all those, the places of which are even, as the second, the fourth, the sixth, etc.; subtract this sum from the former, and the remainder will be the double of the first number. Let us suppose, for example, that the five following numbers are thought of: 3, 7, 13, 17, 20, which, when added two and two as above, give 10, 20, 30, 37, 23; the sum of the first, third, and fifth is 63, and that of the second and fourth is 57; if 57 be subtracted from 63, the remainder 6, will be the double of the first number, 3. Now, if 3 be taken from 10, the first of the sums, the remainder 7, will be the second number; and by proceeding in this manner, we may find all the rest.

In the second case, that is to say, if the number or the numbers thought of be even, you must ask and write down as above, the sum of the first and second; that of the second and third; and so on, as before; but instead of the sum of the first and the last, you must take that of the second and last; then add together those which stand in the even places, and form them into a new sum apart; add also those in the odd places, the first excepted, and subtract this sum from the former, the remainder will be double of the second number; and if the second number, thus found, be subtracted from the sum of the first and second, you will have the first number; if it be taken from that of the second and third, it will give the third; and so of the rest. Let the numbers thought of be, for example, 3, 7, 13, 17; the sums formed as above are 10, 20, 30, 24; the sum of the second and fourth is 44, from which if 30, the third, be subtracted, the remainder will be 14, the double of 7, the second number. The first therefore is 3, third 13, and the fourth 17.

When each of the numbers thought of does not exceed 9, they may be easily found in the following manner:

Having made the person add 1 to the double of the first number thought of, desire him to multiply the whole by 5, and to add to the product the second number. If there be a third, make him double this first sum, and add 1 to it, after which, desire him to multiply the new sum by 5, and to add to it the third number. If there be a fourth, proceed in the same manner, desiring him to double the preceding sum; to add to it 1; to multiply by 5; to add the fourth number; and so on.

Then ask the number arising from the addition of the last number thought of, and if there were two numbers, subtract 5 from it; if there were three, 55; if there were four, 555; and so on; for the remainder will be composed of figures, of which the first on the left will be the first number thought of, the next second, and so on.

Suppose the numbers thought of be 3, 4, 6; by adding 1 to 6, the double of the first, we shall have 7, which, being multiplied by 5, will give 35; if 4, the second number thought of, be then added, we shall have 39, which doubled gives 78; and, if we add 1, and multiply 79, the sum, by 5, the result will be 395. In the last place, if we add 6, the number thought of, the sum will be 401; and if 55 be deducted from it, we shall have, for remainder, 346, the figures of which, 3, 4, 6, indicate in order the three numbers though of.


One of the party having in one hand a piece of gold and in the other a piece of silver, you may tell in which hand he has the gold and in which the silver, by the following method: Some value, represented by an even number, such as 8, must be assigned to the gold, and a value represented by an odd number, such as 3, must be assigned to the silver; after which, desire the person to multiply the number in the right hand by any even number whatever, such as 2; and that in the left hand by an odd number, as 3; then bid him add together the two products, and if the whole sum be odd, the gold will be in the right hand and the silver in the left; if the sum be even, the contrary will be the case.

To conceal the trick better, it will be sufficient to ask whether the sum of the two products can be halved without a remainder; for in that case the total will be even, and in the contrary case odd.

It may be readily seen, that the pieces, instead of being in the two hands of the same person, may be supposed to be in the hands of two persons, one of whom has the even number, or piece of gold, and the other the odd number, or piece of silver. The same operations may then be performed in regard to these two persons, as are performed in regard to the two hands of the same person, calling the one privately the right and the other the left.


The plan is to let a person select several numbers out of a bag, and to tell him the number which shall exactly divide the sum of those he has chosen; provide a small bag, divided into two parts, into one of which put several tickets, numbered, 6, 9, 15, 36, 63, 120, 213, 309, etc.; and in the other part put as many other tickets marked number 3 only. Draw a handful of tickets from the first part, and, after showing them to the company, put them into the bag again, and, having opened it a second time, desire any one to take out as many tickets as he thinks proper; when he has done that, you open privately the other part of the bag, and tell him to take out of it one ticket only. You may safely pronounce that the ticket shall contain the number by which the amount of the other numbers is divisible; for, as each of these numbers can be multiplied by 3, their sum total must, evidently, be divisible by that number. An ingenious mind may easily diversify this exercise, by marking the tickets in one part of the bag with any numbers that are divisible by 9 only, the properties of both 9 and 3 being the same; and it should never be exhibited to the same company twice without being varied.


The discovery of remarkable properties of the number 9 was accidentally made, more than forty years since, though, we believe, it is not generally known.

The component figures of the product made by the multiplication of every digit into the number 9, when added together, make Nine.

The order of these component figures is reversed after the said number has been multiplied by 5.

The component figures of the amount of the multipliers (viz. 45), when added together, make Nine.

The amount of the several products or multiples of 9 (viz. 405), when divided by 9, gives far a quotient, 45; that is, 4 plus 5 = Nine.

The amount of the first product (viz. 9), when added to the other product, whose respective component figures make 9, is 81; which is the square of Nine.

The said number 81, when added to the above-mentioned amount of the several products, or multiples, of 9 (viz. 405), makes 486; which, if divided by 9, gives, for a quotient, 54; that is 5 plus 4 = Nine.

It is also observable, that the number of changes that may be rung on nine bells, is 362,880; which figures added together, make 27; that is, 2 plus 7 = Nine.

And the quotient of 362,880, divided by 9, will be 40,320; that is, 4 plus 0 plus 3 plus 2 plus 0 = Nine.

To add a figure to any given number, which shall render it divisible by Nine: Add the figures named; and the figure which must be added to the sum produced, in order to render it divisible by 9, is the one required. Thus

Suppose the given number to be 7521: Add these together, and 15 will be produced; now 15 requires 3 to render it divisible by 9; and that number 3, being added to 7521, causes the same divisibility; 7521 plus 3 gives 7524, and divided by 9, gives 836. This exercise may be diversified by your specifying, before the sum is named, the particular place where the figure shall be inserted, to make the number divisible by 9; for it is exactly the same thing whether the figure be put at the head of the number, or between any two of its digits.


Two persons agree to take, alternately, numbers less than a given number, for example, 11 and to add them together till one of them has reached a certain sum, such as 100. By what means can one of them infallibly attain to that number before the other? The whole secret in this consists in immediately making choice of the numbers, 1, 12, 23, 34, and so on, or of a series which continually increases by 11, up to 100. Let us suppose, that the first person, who knows the game, makes choice of 1; it is evident that his adversary, as he must count less than 11, can, at most, reach 11 by adding 10 to it. The first will then take 1, which will make 12; and whatever number the second may add, the first will certainly win, provided he continually add the number which forms the complement of that of his adversary, to 11; that is to say, if the latter take 8, he must take 3; if 9, he must take 2; and so on. By following this method, he will infallibly attain to 89; and it will then be impossible for the second to prevent him from getting first to 100; for whatever number the second takes, he can attain only to 99; after which the first may say—"and 1 makes 100." If the second take 1 after 89, it would make 90, and his adversary would finish by saying—"and 10 makes 100." Between two persons who are equally acquainted with the game, he who begins must necessarily win.


To tell the figure a person has struck out of the sum of two given numbers: Arbitrarily command those numbers only, that are divisible by 9; such, for instance, as 36, 63, 81, 117, 126, 162, 261, 360, 315, and 432. Then let a person choose any two of these numbers; and, after adding them together in his mind, strike out from the sum any one of the figures he pleases. After he has so done, desire him to tell you the sum of the remaining figures; and it follows, that the number which you are obliged to add to this amount, in order to make it 9 or 18, is the one he struck out. Thus:—Suppose he chooses the numbers 162 and 261, making altogether 423, and that he strike out the center figure; the two other figures will, added together, make 7, which, to make nine, requires 2, the number struck out.


A King being desirous to confer a liberal reward on one of his courtiers, who had performed some very important service, desired him to ask whatever he thought proper, assuring him it should be granted. The courtier, who was well acquainted with the science of numbers, only requested that the monarch would give him a quantity of wheat equal to that which would arise from one grain doubled sixty-three times successively. The value of the reward was immense; for it will be seen, by calculation, that the sixty-fourth of the double progression divided by 1: 2: 4: 8: 16: 32: etc., is 9223372036854775808. But the sum of all the terms of a double progression, beginning with 1, may be obtained by doubling the last term, and subtracting from it 1. The number of the grains of wheat, therefore, in the present case, will be 18446744073709551615. Now, if a pint contains 9216 grains of wheat, a gallon will contain 73728; and, as eight gallons make one bushel, if we divide the above result by eight times 73728, we shall have 31274997411295 for the number of the bushels of wheat equal to the above number of grains; a quantity greater than what the whole earth could produce in several years.


A man took a fancy to a horse, which a dealer wished to dispose of at as high a price as he could; the latter, to induce the man to become a purchaser, offered to let him have the horse for the value of the twenty-fourth nail in his shoes, reckoning one farthing for the first nail, two for the second, four for the third, and so on to the twenty-fourth. The man, thinking he should have a good bargain, accepted the offer; the price of the horse was, therefore, necessarily great. By calculating as before, the twenty-fourth term of the progression 1:2:4:8: etc., will be found to be 8388608, equal to the number of farthings the purchaser gave for the horse; the price, therefore amounted to 8738 pounds 2s. 8d.


A club of seven agreed to dine together every day successively as long as they could sit down to table in different order. How many dinners would be necessary for that purpose? It may be easily found, by the rules already given, that the club must dine together 5040 times, before they would exhaust all the arrangements possible, which would require about thirteen years.


If a hundred stones be placed in a straight line, at the distance of a yard from each other, the first being at the same distance from a basket, how many yards must the person walk who engages to pick them up, one by one, and put them into the basket? It is evident that, to pick up the first stone, and put it into the basket, the person must walk two yards; for the second, he must walk four; for the third, six; and so on, increasing by two, to the hundredth. The number of yards which the person must walk, will be equal to the sum of the progression, 2, 4, 6, etc., the last term of which is 200, (22). But the sum of the progression is equal to 202, the sum of the two extremes, multiplied by 50, or half the number of terms; that is to say, 10,000 yards, which makes more than 5 1/2 miles.




He loved her. She hated him, but womanlike, she would have him, and she was the death of him. Who was he? Answer: A flea.

Why is life the greatest of riddles? Because we must all give it up.

If a church be on fire, why has the organ the smallest chance of escape?
Because the organ cannot play on it.

Why should a sailor be the best authority as to what goes on in the moon? Because he has been to see (sea).

What does a cat have that no other animal has? Kittens.

When is a man behind the times? When he's a weak (week) back. What is the difference between a baby and a pair of boots? One I was and the other I wear.

Use me well, and I'm everybody; scratch my back and I'm nobody. A looking glass.

What word becomes shorter by adding a syllable to it? Short.

If a stupid fellow was going up for a competitive examination, why should he study the letter P? Because P makes ass Pass.

Why is buttermilk like something that never happened? Because it hasn't a curd (occurred).

Why is the letter O the noisiest of all the vowels? Because the rest are in audible.

Why is a Member of Parliament like a shrimp? Because he has M. P. at the end of his name.

Why is a pig a paradox? Because it is killed first and cured afterward.

Why is a bad half-dollar like something said in a whisper? Because it is uttered, but not allowed (aloud).

Why do black sheep eat less than white ones? Because there are fewer of them.

Why is a barn-door fowl sitting on a gate like a half-penny? Because its head is on one side and its tail on the other.

Why is a man searching for the Philosopher's Stone like Neptune? Because he is a-seeking (sea-king) what never was.

Why is the nose placed in the middle of the face? Because it's the scenter (cen-ter).

What is most like a hen stealing? A cock robbing (cock robin).

What is worse than "raining cats and dogs"? Hailing omnibuses. When is butter like Irish children? When it is made into little pats. Why is a chronometer like thingumbob? Because it's a watch-you-may-call-it.

Of what color is grass when covered with snow? Invisible green.

Name in two letters the destiny of all earthly things? D. K.

What is even better than presence of mind in a railway accident? Absence of body. What word contains all the vowels in due order? Facetiously.

Why is a caterpillar like a hot roll? Because its the grub that makes the butterfly. What is that which occurs twice in a moment, once in a minute, and not once in a thousand years? The letter M.

What is that which will give a cold, cure a cold, and pay the doctor's bill? A draught (draft).

What is that which is neither flesh nor bone, yet has four fingers and a thumb? A glove.

Why has man more hair than woman? Because he is naturally her suitor (hirsuter).

What is that which no one wishes to have, yet no one cares to lose?
A bald head.

Why is the letter G like the sun? Because it is the center of light.

Why is the letter D like a wedding-ring? Because we cannot be wed without it.

Why should ladies not learn French? Because one tongue is enough for any woman.

Which tree is most suggestive of kissing? Yew.

What act of folly does a washerwoman commit? Putting out tubs to catch soft water when it rains hard.

Why should a cabman be brave? Because none but the brave deserve the fair (fare).

What is the most difficult surgical operation? To take the jaw out of a woman.

Why is it difficult to flirt on board the P. and O. steamers? Because all of the mails (males) are tied up in bags.

What letter made Queen Bess mind her P's and Q's? R made her (Armada).

Why is it an insult to a cock-sparrow to mistake him for a pheasant?
Because it is making game of him.

What is that from which the whole may be taken, and yet some will remain? The word wholesome.

Why is blind-man's buff like sympathy? Because it is a fellow feeling for another.

When may a man be said to have four hands? When he doubles his fists.

Why is it easy to break into an old man's house? Because his gait (gate) is broken and his locks are few.

Why should you not go to New York by the 12:50 train? Because it is ten-to-one if you catch it.

Why should the male sex avoid the letter A? Because it makes the men mean.

When does a man sneeze three times? When he cannot help it.

What relation is the doormat to the scraper? A step farther.

Why does a piebald pony never pay toll? Because his master pays it for him.

Why is the letter S like a sewing-machine? Because it makes needles needless.

What is the difference between a cow and a rickety chair? One gives milk and the other gives way (whey).

What flower most resembles a bull's mouth? A cowslip.

What does a stone become in the water? Wet.

If the alphabet were invited out to dine, what time would U, V, W, X,
Y, and Z go—They would go after tea.

When was beef-tea first introduced into England? When Henry VIII dissolved the Pope's bull.

What letter is the pleasantest to a deaf woman? A, because it makes her hear.

When is love a deformity? When it is all on one side.

Why is a mouse like hay? Because the cat'll (cattle) eat it.

Why is a madman equal to two men? Because he is one beside himself.

Why are good resolutions like ladies fainting in church? Because the sooner they are carried out the better.

Which is the merriest letter in the alphabet? U, because it is always in fun.

What is the difference between a bankrupt and a feather bed? One is hard up and the other is soft down.

What is that word of five letters from which, if you take two, only one remains? Stone.

Why is the letter B like a fire? Because it makes oil boil.

What word is pronounced quicker by adding a syllable to it? Quick.

Which animal travels with the most, and which with the least, luggage? The elephant the most because he is never without his trunk. The fox and cock the least because they have only one brush and comb between them.

Why are bakers the most self-denying people? Because they sell what they need (knead) themselves.

Which of the constellations reminds you of an empty fireplace? The
Great Bear (grate bear).

What relation is that child to its own father who is not its own father's son? His daughter.

When does a pig become landed property? When he is turned into a meadow.

Which is the heavier, the full or the new moon? The full moon is a great deal lighter.

Why is an alligator the most deceitful of animals? Because he takes you in with an open countenance.

Why are fowls the most profitable of live stock? Because for every grain they give a peck.

What is that which comes with a coach, goes with a coach, is of no use whatever to the coach, and yet the coach can't go without it? Noise.

If your uncle's sister is not your aunt, what relation is she to you?
Your mother.

Why does a duck put his head under water? For divers reasons.

Why does it take it out again? For sundry reasons.

What vegetable products are the most important in history? Dates.

Why is the letter W like a maid of honor? Because it is always in waiting.

What letter is always invisible, yet never out of sight? The letter S.

Why is the letter F like a cow's tail? Because it is the end of beef.

On which side of a pitcher is the handle? The outside.

What is higher and handsomer when the head is off? Your pillow.

Why is a pig in a parlor like a house on fire? Because the sooner it is put out the better.

What is the keynote to good breeding? B natural.

What is it that walks with its head downwards? A nail in a shoe.

Why is a lame dog like a schoolboy adding six and seven together?
Because he puts down three and carries one.

Why is the Brooklyn Bridge like merit? Because it is very often passed over.

What did Adam first plant in the Garden of Eden? His foot.

What is Majesty, deprived of its externals? A jest.

How would you make a thin man fat? Throw him out of a second story window and let him come down plump.

What is the difference between a young maid of sixteen and an old maid of eighty? One is happy and careless and the other is cappy and hairless.

When was fruit known to use bad language? When the first apple cursed the first pair.

If a man gets up on a donkey, where should he get down? From a swan's breast.

What is lengthened by being cut at both ends? A ditch.

"I am what I am; I am not what I follow. If I were what I follow, I should not be what I am." What is it? A footman.

Which is the strongest day of the week? Sunday. All the others are weak days.