I as many of my friends and school mates, used to play this game, up in Scotland, and it really becomes quite
addictive once you start smashing everyone else's conkers, whilst gathering a score. EllicottCity.net is currently,
as of January 2008, trying to organize a Conkers Day in our town. If you want to find out more so you can play
with your own friends, then please read below and check out the images. Wearing eye protection really is advisable.
The Common Horse-chestnut tree.
Conker is the name used in Britain, Ireland and some former British colonies for the nuts of the Common Horse-chestnut tree, when used in a game traditionally played by children, Conkers. The name comes from the nineteenth-century dialectal word conker meaning snail-shell (related to French conque meaning a conch), as the game was originally played using snail shells. The name may also be influenced by the verb conquer, as the game was also called conquerors. Conkers are also known regionally as "obblyonkers", "cheggies" or "cheesers". In America they are simply known as chestnuts or as buckeyes.
- Take a large, hard conker and drill a hole through it using a nail, gimlet, or small screwdriver. (This may be done by an adult on behalf of the contestant.) Thread a piece of string through it about 25 cm (10 inches) long. Often a shoelace is used. Tie a large knot at one or both ends of the string, so that the conker will not slide off when swung hard.
- Find an opponent. It is to your advantage if you can find an opponent with a conker smaller and softer than yours (beware of people who bake conkers to make them harder).
- Take turns hitting each other's conker using your own. If you break your opponent's conker, you gain a point. To do this one player lets the conker dangle on the full length of the string while the other player hits. To hit, hold the string in one hand with the conker held above it in the other hand, then swipe at the opponent's conker, letting go of your own nut but keeping hold of the string.
- A new conker is a none-er meaning that it has conquered none yet.
- If you manage to smash your opponent's conker to pieces, so that it comes off the string, if your conker was a none-er then it becomes a one-er, if it was a one-er then it becomes a two-er etc. If another conker then subsequently beats your conker then if that conker was a one-er then it becomes a two-er as it has beaten another single conker. In some areas of Scotland, conker victories are counted using the term "Bully-one", "Bully-two", etc. instead of "one-er" or "two-er".
- To beat your opponent you smash their conker so it falls off the shoelace/string. So for example, if two none-ers play, the surviving conker will become a one-er. But if a two-er plays a three-er, the surviving conker will become a six-er.
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