Don’t you love the game hopscotch? Pretty soon the sidewalks in our neighborhood will be clear of snow and impromptu games of hopscotch will commence. Yahoo!
Fun facts about hopscotch… for when you’re on Jeopardy. When you win because of your amazing hopscotch knowledge, will you please give me $50?
- I had no idea there was such deep meaning to such a simple game. According to the French Canadians… “The player hops along, pushing a marker that represents the soul. If he wobbles, it is because his soul is weak and he must work at purifying himself to get to heaven. After avoiding hell, and earning different merits, the player reaches heaven, picks up the marker (his soul) and places it under his arm or on his head, symbolizing the re-merging of soul and body. The aim of the game is to avoid stepping on the lines dividing the boxes, symbolic of keeping one’s life free of uncertainty.” YIKES!
- According to Wikipedia, “there are apocryphal stories of hopscotch being invented by Romans or Chinese, but the first recorded reference to hopscotch dates back to 1677. In an entry of Poor Robin’s Almanack for that year, the game is referred to as “Scotch-hoppers.” The entry states, “The time when schoolboys should play at Scotch-hoppers.” The 1707 edition of Poor Robin’s Almanack includes the following phrase… “Lawyers and Physicians have little to do this month, so they may (if they will) play at Scotch-hoppers.”
- Hopscotch was/is called Potsy in New York City. Potsy? Now that’s funny!
- Those crazy French. A French variant of hopscotch is known as Escargot (snail) or “La Marelle Ronde” (round hopscotch). It is played on a spiral course. Players must hop on one foot to the center of the spiral and back out again. A player marks one square with his or her initials, and from then on may place two feet in that square, while all other players must hop over it. The game ends when all squares are marked or no one can reach the center, and the winner is the player who “owns” the most squares.
When’s the last time you played hopscotch, dear readers? I love it when we go for walks in our neighborhood and come across several different hopscotch games. I can’t help but join in. You?
Until then (it IS still mid-winter after all)… for all the kids and all the kids at heart, enjoy this great hopscotch rug!
I LOVE the French version. When we played it growing up on Rosemont in Rosedale Park, the grid was completely different. I’ll have to draw it for you someday. I had never seen the “official” grid until many years after I had stopped playing it. Thanks for all the info! I love that you continue to provide us all with interesting cultural information!
FANTASTIC rug. Thanks for finding and sharing it!
Hopefully we’ll be able to catch up some time this spring / summer when I’m in Harbor Springs …. I’d love to reconnect and meet your little birdie!
Smiles, Kathryn e
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