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Board game - The Game of the Goose

The Game of the Goose

  • Object:

    Board game

  • Place of origin:

    England (published)

  • Date:

    1790-1810 (published)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Hand-coloured paper, mounted on wood

  • Museum number:

    MISC.292-1981

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This is one of the museum's earliest board games and is unusual in that it is mounted on a wooden board. The game has 61 playing spaces illustrating geese, bridges, dice, houses, a pond, a skull, and gold coins. The rules, conveniently printed in the middle of the game give rewards and penalties. The game also contains moralistic elements. Landing on a goose allows the player to 'double his chance forward', while if a player lands at the ale house, he or she incurs a double penalty of paying one stake and waiting until all the other players have had a turn. Some penalties are even more severe. Landing on death or overshooting the end space means that the player has to go back to the beginning again.

Physical description

Design: hand drawn and painted paper mounted on wood which is painted black
No. of squares: 61
Squares illustrated: some
Square numbering: all, in caps above each
Squares titled: some
Subject of starting square: arch
Subject of ending square: archway

Place of Origin

England (published)

Date

1790-1810 (published)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Hand-coloured paper, mounted on wood

Dimensions

Length: 53 cm, Width: 36.8 cm, Depth: 1.5 cm

Object history note

60 numbered circles and an archway numbered 61; in circles 5,6,9,12,14,18,19,23,27,31,32,36,41,42,45,47,50,52,53,54,58,59,61 show illustrations of geese, bridges, dice, houses, a pond, a skull, and gold coins. The spiral is bordered by a trailing leaf pattern; in three corners is a floral design; cream ground, black drawing with red, green, light green and touches of brown or dark red.

CGG-Games and Puzzles, 1991

Historical context note

Rewards: forward movement, extra turns, receipt of counters
Forfeits: backward movement, missed turns, payment of counters
No. of Players: 6
Equipment required: markers, dice or teetotum, counters

Rules:
THE RULES TO BE OBSERVED IN THIS GAME ARE AS FOLLOWS

1. As many as please may play with a pair of dice and everyone staking throw who shall begin.
2. He that throwing at the first must go to the number 21 and add a stake to the rest. (This reads...to the number 21 end add a stake to the rest - so it might refer to the position of the first player or the position of the marker.)
3. He that throws a Goose must double his chance forward from his last place.
4. He that throws 6 must pay a stake for his passage over the bridge and go to No. 12.
5. He that throws 19 where All House is must pay a stake and stay till every one has thrown once.
6. He that throws 31 where the Well is must pay 2 stakes and stay there till every one plays twice unless some other throws the same by which he is delivered.
7. He that throws 42 where the Pond is pays one and returns back to 29.
8. He that goes to 52 where the Prison is must pay one and stay there till some other brings him out.
9. He that goes to 58 where Death is must pay one and begin again
10. He that is overtaken by another must return to his place that overtook him and both pay.
11. He that overthroweth the number 61 must return back again and count his throw from the beginning.
12. He that throweth just number 61 wins the Game.

The rules are very similar too, with rewards and penalties, to the Game of Goose, and while it was devised to be enjoyed the game also contains the moralistic elements of good and back. Landing on a goose allows the player to `double his chance forward' while if a player lands at the ale house, he or she incurs a double penalty of paying one stake and waiting until all the other players have had a turn. Some penalties are even more severe, death and overthrowing 61 mean that the player has to go back to the beginning again.

Rules placement: written in the centre

Descriptive line

Hand coloured paper and wood game, The Game of the Goose, made in England about 1800

Categories

Games

Collection

Museum of Childhood

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