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(1816). Throughout his work Berni men
. LONDON, SATURDAY, JANUARY 1, 1913.
tions the following eleven games of cards :
Bassetta, Cricca, •Flueso. Noviera, Primiera, CONTENTS.-No. 158.
Quintiera, Ronfa,* Sextjera, Trentuno, Tri. NOTES:-Primero, 1.--- Christmas Bibliography, 2 - Hugh onfi, and Trionfi-Piccadis. He says in refer.
Peters, 4- Queen Elizaheth and Richard II. - The Leek ag Welsh National Emblem-Marlborough in Dublin, 6–
ence to Primero, as translated by Singer :Mechanical Piano hefore 1868-“The sport of kings Scott: a Curiosity in Quotation - Put up this, 'twill be less than useless, for there can.scarcely be any
“To describe what Primero is would be little thine another day"-Antiquity of the “Tied House,” 7.
one so ignorant as to be unacquainted, with it.QUERIES:-Sir John Greville of Binton
The game is played differently in different places, Barnhill_Salehurst. Sussex - A Ballad of the Revenge Kennedy Family - The First Folio Shakespeare. Earliest but it would occupy too much tinie, io recount Reference, 8- "Tamson's mare -Words on a Sampler- all its varieties. At Florence it is the.tnstom to Cardigan Manuscript-Monuments at Warwick--Polhill leave out the Sevens, Eights, and Nines,f keeping Family-Payment for Good Friday Sermon-Records of and vying only with the smaller cards; the, Rest Navigation in India. 9-H. M.S. Beagle- A Spur to a is made at the second card, and when the first. Celestial Race' – Parish Registers of Surrey
Inquisition in Fiction and Drama-* of sorts" -- French player says Pass every one is obliged to discard, Pronunciation of “ Law"-Reference Wanted, 10.
notwithstanding any one may have an Ace or a.
Six in his hand. REPLIES:- Thomas Chippendale, Upholsterer, 10-Dr.
At Venice, for example, the Peter du Moulin and North Wales-Capt. Pitman, 12
mode of playing may be different ; in Lombardy, W. Carter-Apparent Death, 13-Thomas Pretty, Vicar Naples, France, and Spain, so many countries of Horsley-Long. “S," Date of Disappearance-Novels so many customs. But of all the modes in the in Northanger Abbey,' 14—“Prock”- Yelver in Place. world, let them be what they may, none can be Names-“ Dander," 15--The Stones nf London—"Jag' superior to that of the court at Rome.-In this -- Irish Families : Taylor of Ballyhaise-- Variants in the glorious court, then, among other laudable Text of Kenilworth, 16–Milton's Lycidas'- Wrestling customs, Primero principally flourishes; it has Match in Fiction-The Curfew Bell - Secret ServiceHarveys of Whittington, Staffordshire. 17-Lord Grim- there its liberty, its reputation, its decorum, its thorpe's List of Churches-'Gammer Gurton '-Senls of full members and figures, and all its parts : there Thomas, First Marquis of Dorset - Hogarth's 'Rake's the Sevens, Fights, and Nines are not withdrawn ; Progress': The Black Joke'-Price of Tobacco in the there it is allowed to discard, but not to discard Seventeenth Century, 18.
both cards, after Pass is once said ; nor can this NOTES ON BOOKS:- Whitaker's Almanack, Peerage, be done with the two cards of the Rest, as is usual and “The International Whitaker' - Who's Who' * English woman's YearBook' - 'Writers' and Artists' this game may be called its two principal heads,
in other places. The most essential operation of Year-Book '-'Whitman's Print-Collector's Handbook'* Varro on Farming '-Reviews and Magazines.
the Flush and the Primiera, and a third, derived Notices to Correspondents.
from the first, which is called the Point; from
Points, which diversity gives rise to
controversies, and a thousand disputable points.
game is, that four cards of one sort, as four ('ourt PRIMERO.
cards, four Aces, &c., conquer both the Flush
and Primiera," This old game of cards was called Prime in France, Primera in Spain, and Primiera According to this account, the game. as in Italy --all derived from the Latin pri- played at Florence, was with twenty-eight marius (first). In English literature, besides cards (Aces to Sevens), and at Rome with the occasional use of the foreign names, the the full pack; and from the references to game is designated Primero (and also Prima- the numerous methods of play it was in Vista, which is probably a variant), with existence for some time previous to 1526. the usual corruptions in spelling of the
Another more celebrated Italian, Jerome early days. Primero is actually a Spanish Cardan (1501-76), wrote a work in Latin word, meaning “ first or “chief."
entitled “Liber de Ludo Aleæ,' being an The earliest writer mentioning the game
amplification of an original tract by him is an Italian named Francesco Berni (or
games of chance. It contains about Bernia), who was born about 1496, and died 10,000 words, and is divided into thirtyin 1536. His work is entitled . Capitolo del two chapters, each with a heading. In it Gioco della Primiera,' &c., a poem published
the following twelve games of cards are in Rome in 1526. It contains some par
mentioned : Baseta, Centum, Cricones, ticulars of the game, and is believed to be the earliest work extant describing a card
Berni attributes the invention of Ronfa to game. The book is very rare, but a number husband of Queen Isabella, and King of Naples,
King Ferdinand-evidently referring to the of references and extracts from it is to be Sicily, and Spain. found in Samuel Weller Singer's ‘Re- + This is a mistake in the original or translation. searches into the History of Playing Cards He means the Eights, Nines, and Tens.
Primera, Ronfa, Scaltarą:* Sequentiæ, Se. whether at the Rest, or from the complete quentium, Tarochi, Trapola; Triumfeti, and hand, or at both times. His account is Triumphi. Singer, in one of the appendices also obscure about the staking and vying. to his own work above. mentioned, sets out He gives some examples of discarding, the text of Cardan's book, so far as it which, if one thoroughly understood Carrelates to cards... A portion of it deals with dan’s game, would no doubt be instructive, Primero, bout the text is so corrupt or as he was a mathematician of no mean imperfect that it is difficult to translate order, and a clever man in other ways.
His exactly what Cardan intended to say, The repute as a physician was worldwide. He following: principal · details are embraced visited Scotland in 1552 to attend John therein, viz. :
of St. Andrews, Primera [sic]t is the best of all games.
The for asthma, whom he cured. He also at. aghi: Nine, and Ten are rejected from the tended Edward VI., whose horoscope he celinary pack, and the King, Queen, and Knave made out, and afterwards published in one count ten each.
Ten points are added to the of his works. pips of the Two, Three, Four, and Five, which therefore count respectively twelve, thirteen, Rabelais, in 1532, places the game second fourteen, and fifteen. The pips of the Six and in the list of the Gargantuan Games. AnSeven are trebled, so that they count respectively other French writer, in the ‘Cabinet du eighteen and twenty-one. The Ace is value for sixteen. The hand is complete with four cards, Roy de France ’(1581), mentions it as being and there are five different classes of hand, (1) played by the French clergy. In 1584 Number, (2) Primera, (3) Highest, (4) Flush, Amurath III., Sultan of Turkey, sent a poem and (5) Four of the saine Rank.. Number (or to Henry of Navarre (afterwards Henry IV. Point), the lowest class, consists of two or three of France) commencing with the verse (old cards of the same suit; and the lowest hand in it (two court cards) is value for twenty, and the translation) :highest (Seren, Six, and Five) for fifty-four. I The estate of ffraunce as now it stands Primera is four cards of four different suits, and Is like Primero at fowre hands beats any Number hand ; the lowest Primera is Wher some doe vye, and some doe hould forty (four court cards), and the highest eighty-one And best assured maye be too bould. (three Sevens and a Six). Highest, fifty-five points (the Seren, Six, and Ace of the same suit),
The Duc d'Angoulême, son of Charles IX. beats both Primera and Number. Flush, four (France) and Marie Touchet, tells the cards of the same suit, beats the other three following tale about 1 and 2 Aug., 1589 :classes, and the lowest hand in it is forty-two, the highest seventy. The remaining, and best
“ The King (Henry III.) ordered us to retire class is akin to Primera (four different suits), and and M. de Bellegarde, as first gentleman of the is four cards of the same kind, such as four Sixes, bedchamber, after drawing the royal curtains, or four Kings ; the lowest hand in it is forty, accompanied me to my quarters, where I found and the highest eighty-four. Four Kings, four Chemerault, Richelieu, Lanergue, and Renty Queens, and four Knaves are equal in value. playing at Primero, with whom I made a fifth. In each class a higher value beats a lower one, The game lasted till four in the morning, and and when two or more hands of the same class are it being sunrise, I threw myself on my bed, and equal in value, the eldest holder of them conquers. was just settling off to repose, when one of my Two cards to each player are dealt round singly, footmen arrived with the news of my utter ruin, and afterwards two together. When the first crying out in tones of amazement, as the occasion two cards are dealt to each, a rest in the dealing warranted, that the King was stabbed.” takes place, and each player looks at his cards and makes the stake. Discarding is permitted, Académies, but the game of Ambigu, which
Primero is not described in any of the fresh cards to make up the proper number being first appears in the Paris Académie of 1659, taken into the hand and dealt from the pack." But it is not clear from Cardan's account is a later and enlarged version of it. This is where the discarding actually takes place-confirmed by the Address to the Countess
de V. prefixed to the description of Mesle, Could this game in any way be akin to or Ambigu, in that edition, which purports Scartino, a favourite of the D'Estes-Isabella to give the origin of the newer game, and (1474-1539), Marchioness of Mantua, and Beatrice admits that it is derived principally from (1475-97), Duchess of Milan. The former lady, writing to the latter (her sister) in 1493, said,
Primero. Duchat in his edition of Rabelais' "I often wished myself back in your room Works' (1732) describes Prime (Primero) as playing at Scartino." Scartino, from its name, follows (translation) : seems to have embraced the feature of discarding.
There is Great and Little Prime, and each is These ladies were also players of Britano and Imperiale.
a game of cards for four persons. The Great is
played with the Court cards, but in the Little, This is the Spanish form, not the Italian. where each player is dealt four cards one by one,
The three highest cards of a suit-Seven, Six, the highest card is the Seven, which is valued and Ace-make fifty-five, but that combination at twenty-one points ; the next is the Six, which is is allocated to a class by itself.
valued at eighteen, and following it is the Five,
valued at fifteen. The Ace is equivalent to six (1621), Randolph (1634), D'Avenant (1636), teen points, but the other cards, that is to say, Hall (1646), Worcester (1663), and Goldsmith the Two, Three, and Four, are only valued at the points marked on their faces. To all these cards (1762). And in the nineteenth century Scott i here may be added, if desired, a Quinola, gene- mentions the game in 'The Fortunes of rally the Knave of Diamonds, which can be Nigel' (1822): scene, London in 1604 ; and regarded as being any card in any suit as wished. Stanley J. Weyman in 'A Gentleman of After which, each of the players having shown France' (1893) : scene, France in 1588-9. his four cards, he baving his cards in four suits
J. S. McTEAR, wins the Prime ; and if they are of the same suit, he wins the Flush."
6, Arthur Chambers, Belfast. The Great Game, it will be observed, is not
(To be continued.) described beyond the statement that the pack in it embraces the court cards.
CHRISTMAS BIBLIOGRAPHY, Simultaneously with Rabelais's work, or previously (for some writers question the (Continued from 11 S. iv. 503.) publication of 'Gargantua’ in 1532, and (We are glad to have received this communication assign a later date), Primero is mentioned at least in time for Old Christmas Day.] in the · Privy Purse Expences of King Henry THE CHRISTMAS ISSUE of 'N. & Q.' seems the Eighth as being played by the King on 6 Oct.
, 1532.* This is generally held to strangely unfamiliar without the instalment be the first allusion to a specific game of its columns for so many years by the late
of Christmas bibliography contributed to cards being played in England. It is certainly the first account that gives direct Rev. W. C. BOULTER. W. C. B.'s first list details of the players and the actual day appeared in 1882 at 6 S. vi. 506, and from of play; but William Forrest in Second then until last year he contributed twentyGresyld ' (c. 1581) says that Queen Catherine six lists, missing only in 1889, 1891, and
1892. of Aragon (1485-1536) played Gleek as a
In 1891-2 lists were prepared by girl, which would bring it to about 1501 MR. J. C. WELCH. Having made a slipwhen it was played in England. John index of the whole of the lists, I find there Skelton (who died in 1529) evidently refers are nearly 500 titles mentioned, about oneto Primero in the quotation which will fifth of them being sixteenth- and seven be given at the end of these articles,
teenth-century literature. and Elyot directly names it in 1533.
The following list has been prepared Gilbert Walker in Manifest Detection of with a view to continuing the Bibliography: the Most Vyle and Detestable Use of Dice One of the titles has appeared in pre. Play' (1552) refers to Primero as being a vious lists, a more precise reference being new game, and played at Court. Among given. other writers of the sixteenth century Counties of England and the Borders. By William
1879. Notes on the Folk-lore of the Northern who refer to the game, there are Turbervile
Henderson. Christmas and New Year's Day, (1575), Carew (1594), Greene (1599), and pp. 64–77:---Folk-lore Society, 1879. Rowlands (1600). In the ‘Sydney Papers,' 1880. Christmas Mummers in Dorsetshire. By ii. 83, in 1598, there is another specific J. S. Udal. – Folk-lore Record, iii. 87-116. account of Primero being played by Am- of Scotland. By the Rev. W. Gregor. Christmas
1881. Notes on the Folk-lore of the North-East brose Willoughby, Sir Walter Raleigh, and and New Year's Day, &c., pp. 156-64. — Folk - lore Mr. Parker, out of which a quarrel arose ; Society, 1881. and Sir Henry Percy, ninth Earl of North- 1884. Sussex “Tipteerers'”. Play:-- Folk-lore umberland (1564–1632), relates in his ‘Let Journal, ii. 1-8. This is performed on Boxing ters' that Joscelin Percy played Primero
Day. at Essex House on a Sunday, at the time toms : the Mummers. By G. A. Rowell. — Folk-lore
1886. Notes ou some old-fashioned English Cusof the Gunpowder Plot. Shakespeare men- Journal, iv. 97–101. tions the game twice : in The Merry Wives 1887. [Christmas) Yorkshire Custom.- Folk-lore of Windsor' (1600) and 'King Henry VIII.' Journal, v. 74-5. (1613). The principal writers of the seven Mordvins (at Christmas). By John Abercromby:
1889. Beliefs and Religious Ceremonies of the teenth and eighteenth centuries who allude Folk-lore Journal, vii. 116-28. Dorsetshire Chil. to the game are: Ben Jonson (1605 and 1610), dren's Games: [Christmas Mummers). By J. S. Dekker (1608-9), Harrington (1615), Taylor Udal.-Id., 246–7.
1889. The Folk-Tales of the Magyars : (Christ.
mas and New Year Customs), pp. li-liv.-Folk. Imperial holds a very close place to Primero, as lore Society, 1889. the King is mentioned as playing it on the next day 1891. Christmas Crackers. - Strand Magazine, (7 Oot.) with Master Weston.
1891. Christmas in Canton.-Chambers's Journal, 1912. The Reality of Yuletide. By G. HamDecenber, pp. 801-4.
merton.-Cassell's Magazine, Dec., pp. 147-52. 1893.--Christmas time in Florida. By Charles 1912. The Humour of Christmas. By I. Heald. Elwardes. – Chambers's Journal, January, pp. 4-6. - Pearson's Magazine, Dec., pp. 571-9. 1895. The Evolution of Christmas Annuals. By
1912. Medieval Housekeeping. Christmas Fare: Arthur T. Pask.– Windsor Magazine, ii. 697–709.
Ancient and Modern. By H. Macfarlane.-- English 1895. Proverbial Rhymes and Sayings for Christ; Ius. Magazine, Dec., pp. 228-31. mas and the New Year. “The Penham Tracts,'
1912. A Christmas Fête in California. By L. H. ii. 90–99.- Folk-lore Society, 1895.
Wall -Century, Dec., pp. 210-17, 1895. Two Christmas Eve Customs.-Folk - lore,
1912. Christmas in Ritual and Tradition, Chrisvi. 93.
tian and Pagan. By Clement A. Miles. Pp. 400. 1896. The Hood-Game at Haxey, Lincolnshire (Unwin, 1912.) (on Old Christmas Day). By Mabel Peacock.
ROLAND AUSTIN. Folk-lore, vii. 330-49. 1899. Christmas Mummers at Rugby.
Public Library, Gloucester.
Ву W. H. D. Rouse. - Folk-lore, X. 186-94, and Plates II.-VI. Christmas Muimers, id., 351-2.
1899. La Veillée de Noël. Par Paul Sébillot. Reviewed Folk-lore, X. 458-9.
HUGH PETERS. 1900. (Animals carried in procession at Christmas.)-Folk-lore, xi. 257-8.
(See 11 S. vi. 221, 263, 301, 463.) 1901. County Folk-lore. Vol. II. Yorkshire. Festivals of New Year and Christmas, pp. 230-31, VI. PETERS AS A HUSBAND AND A LOVER. 269-83.-Folk-lore Society, 191.
1902. The Vessel Cup.-Folk-lore, xiii. 94-6. The In the year 1635 Peters was minister of Calenig or Gift (Christmas Bough, Lincolnshire).- the English church at Rotterdam. In the 111., 202-3.
1903. County Folk-lore. Yol. III. Orkney and Travels of Sir William Brereton, p. 6 Shetland Islands : [Yule-tide Customs), pp. 194- (under date May, 1634), there is the following 205.-Folk-lore Society, 1903.
allusion to the fact :1903. The Festival of Uphelly A' (or the End of
* We went in the afternoon to the English Yule), as now celebrated at Lerwick. -- Folk-lore, church and heard Mr. Peters, a right zealous and xiv. 74-7.
worthy man. This was formerly intended for a 1903. The Mediæval Stage. By E. K. Chambers. playhouse, but now converted to a better use, 2 vols. 8vo. Vol. I. The Mummers' Play, pp. 205: to a church ; Mr. Peters being there entertained, 227; New Year Customs, pp. 249.73; The Feast of who is allowed by the States one hundred pounds Fools, pp. 274-335; The Boy Bishop, pp: 336-71 per annum-five thousand guilders.” (also Vol. II. pp. 282-9).-With bibliographies.
It is quite certain that 5,000 guilders per 1904. County Folk-lore. Vol. IV. Northumberland. Festival Customs (at Christmas), pp. 79-88. annum (about 5001., and not 1007.) was not - Folk-lore Society, 1904.
paid to Peters. Peters, in his private 1904. Jul: Allesjælestiden ;, Hedensk, Kristen capacity, was unknown the Dutch Julefest. By H. F. Feilberg. Vol. I. Copenhagen, States,” but, with the ministers of the 1904. -Reviewed Folk-lore (1905), xvi. 366–7.
English churches at Amsterdam (Pagett), 1908. County Folk-lore. Vol. : Lincolnshire Flushing (Roe), Middleburgh (Drake), Ley[New Year and Christmas-tide Festivals), pp. 168-70, 214-25; Haxey: Throwing the Hood (a Twelfth- den (Goodyer), and The Hague (Balmeford). Day custom), pp. 267–73. --Folk-lore Society, 1908. received the small stipend paid to each
1908. Christmas. - Catholic Encyclopædia,' iii. minister alike (probably about 11. a week). 724-8. 1909. The Hooden Horse, an East Kent Christ- MSS. of Sir William Boswell, English resi.
All the facts can be gathered from the mus Custom. By Perey Maylam, Canterbury... 1909. dent at The Hague (Add. MS. 6394). In Pp. xv and 124.–Keviewed Folk-lore. xxi. 246-9.
'1909. [English Customs at Christmas.] – Folk addition to the ministers of the town lore, xx. 488–90.
churches, there were two chaplains to the 1910. The Horu-Dance. - Fok-lore, xxi. 38–40. merchants and eleven garrison chaplains.
1910. Christmas. • Encyclopædia of Religion and Ethics,' ed. J. Hastings, iii. 601-8. Christmas the chief of whom was Dr. Stephen Goffe,
Finally, there were four regimental chaplains, Customs, id., 608-10.
1911. Christmas. -- The Times, 25 Dec. The chaplain to the regiment of the English Reality of Christmas.-Id., 26 Dec.
general Lord Vere.
Dr. Goffe, of course, 1912. Christmas in 1812.- Morning Post, 24 Dec.
was the highest paid of all the English Royal Christmases.-Id.
1912. The Children's Festival. - Saturday Review, clergy, and received a salary of 1,548 gulden 21 Dec., pp. 762-4.
(1541. 168.), and he had to pay something to 1912. Psalm xlv. on Christmas Day.-The Specta get it in (Add. MS. 6394, fo. 171).
Peters, tor, 21 Dec., p. 1062. (A letter by A. L. Mayhew.) it seems, had himself re-ordained
1912. Christmas Old and New. – The Times, Holland (ibid., fo. 172), and framed an 25 Dec.
absurd covenant” for his congregation 1912 Christmas Carols. The Folk Songs of the Noul By J. A. Anderson. -The Queen, 21 Dec., to take. It is not surprising, therefore,
that Sir Wm. Boswell reminded him that