Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Rules and descriptions of the games from our childhood

By Rossi Fortunata


Two or more players. Two sticks: one about 70 cm long, round and sturdy (a mazza), the other about 15 cm long with a pointed end (broschiju).
Small hole in the ground (marreja).
A draw is made to determine the player that decides on the procedures of the game: a corpu, a mpizzo, a spada, u biccheri etc.

A corpu:

The smaller stick (broschiju) is placed in the hole, on a slant. The player hits it with the larger stick (mazza), causing it to flip in the air.
At this point the player must hit the broschiju with the mazza, trying to hit it the furthest possible distance.
The player who hits the broschiju the furthest wins. The distance is measured with the mazza.

A mpizzo:

The tip of the broschiju is planted on the side of the hole. It is hit hard with the mazza, whoever hits the broschiju the furthest wins.

U biccheri:

The broschiju is placed on the closed fist of a player. With the other hand the player holds the mazza. The broschiju is thrown up in the air and is hit with the mazza.

A spada:

The broschiju is held behind the mazza, in a closed fist. The broschiju is thrown in the air and is hit with the mazza.


Wrapped with a string, the top is thrown to the ground, either sharply (a corpu), or using less force so that the string unwinds slowly.
If thrown "a corpu" it can be thrown with the tip of the top pointing up, or down.
While the top is spinning, it is picked up in the palm of the hand, passing it between the index and middle fingers.
The top "eats" if it feels heavy and "doesn’t eat" if it feels light as a feather.

A bigger top with large tip is called a cardara.
A smaller top is called pirogina.

The most often played game is the Circle:
Two or more players place a coin or round cork in the center of a circle. They try to move the object out of the circle using the top. The player that succeeds in doing so gets to try and break another player’s top using the tip of his own top.

Another version of the game is to have all the players throw their tops in the center of the circle. This version was more entertaining because one player could hit another player’s top by accurately throwing his own.
The children would often try to have two tops. A smaller one to throw and a larger one to be able to hit another player’s top.


Unlimited number of players. A "singa" (two perpendicular lines 80 cm long) is drawn on the ground.
Every player has a coin, or in a poorer version, a cork.
From a predetermined distance, everyone throws the coin trying to get the closest possible to the "singa".
The manner in which the coin was to be thrown on the first round would be determined by the player whose name would be drawn. After that whichever player would come first would decide.

The positions possible:
"A ncucchjiu" (with both feet together).
"All’ancata" (with one leg bent in front of the other).
"Gangila" (standing, one foot on the knee of the other leg, forming a triangle, with the top thrown through the triangle).
"Ngja" (with legs spread apart and bent).

Throws possible:
"A firriu" (the coin or cork held between the index and thumb).
"O cilu" (the coin was spun).

The order was determined based on the distance of the player’s coin or cork from the lines. Whoever came closest would take all the coins, would shake them between their hands and throw them to the ground.
The player would keep the coins or corks that would land on their sides.
The others would be left to the next player. When only one coin remained, it would be spun in the air.
The same rules would apply when instead of using the "singa", the wall of a house was used.


Two or more players would take turns throwing a coin against a wall.
The player who would land their coin closest to that of another player would get to keep it. The distance would have been predetermined by the players.


Two teams formed of 2-5 players each.
The team who was picked first forms a line, with the players bent over, their heads between the legs of the player in front. The first player places his head and hands on a neutral person, "the mother", who stays seated and regulates the game (if no person is available, the player leans against a wall).

The other team’s player’s jump on top of the players who are bent over, they must remain on top, without having their feet touch the ground, for a predetermined amount of time.

If one player gets tired, because of the weight, he says "manna", at this point all the team’s members have to give up and the game is restarted.

If one player from the second team falls off, the game is restarted, and the teams reverse positions.


Unlimited number of players.
A draw is made to determine the player on whose shoulders the other ones will have to jump over.
The player, whose name is drawn, bends forward, with hands on knees. The other players jump over, saying a rhyme, representing the numbers one through ten.
The player who makes a mistake takes the place of the one who is bent over.


This game uses an object similar to a dice, made from the bone of an ox’s foot.
The dice is thrown, and there is different version of the game depending on which side it lands on.
Among them, the player who is conducting the game determines how many hits a losing player will receive when the madwoman, wearing a handkerchief, comes out of the house.


Hide and Seek.


Tag: The player chosen tries to catch another player, the player caught tries to tag someone else.


Two or more players construct castles made using walnuts, with a base of three walnuts or chestnuts, topped by another two nuts. The distance between the castles is determined by a larger walnut or chestnut, also used for the throw.
There is a draw to determine which player gets to regulate the game, determining the distance and type of throw.
The rules are similar to that of another game, the "singa".
The player throws the nut at the castles, trying to hit as many as possible.


Game played by both sexes.
A series of squares in the form of a bell are drawn on the pavement. The player would throw a stone in the numbered squares, and would hop with one foot in the single squares, and both feet in the double squares, without touching the lines, trying to pick up the stone.


A slide is created using various materials. Players would throw hazelnuts down the slide, one at a time. The player, whose hazelnut would touch the others, would get the hazelnuts.


Players had to guess how many hazelnuts or chestnuts a player held in his closed hands. Whoever guessed the right number got to keep the nuts.


A draw is made and the player chosen becomes "patri gilormu" (the father). This player has a house, which is a rectangle drawn on the pavement. He comes out of the house saying the phrase " here comes padri gilormu", standing on one foot, with the other bent back at the knee, and a handkerchief in one hand, he chases the other players.

If he puts his foot down, the other players hit him until he retreats in the house.
If he touches another player with the handkerchief, the two retreat to the house.
The two then come out, standing on one foot saying "here comes padri gilormu cu su fighiju (the father and his son), and the game continues until all the players become the children.


Teams of 3-5 players are formed. The team drawn comes into possession of the house.
From the house the players would go out trying to tag the other players. The players tagged would become prisoners, and be brought back to the house.

Here they would be watched by some members of the team, while the other members would go out trying to catch more players.
The "prisoners" would have to be watched because they could be freed, if another "free" players would tag them.

The game would end when all the players would be caught.The game would then restart with the roles reversed.

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