- The popular name for the horse-chestnut, and for the game played with them suspended on a string. The history of the game is not quite as clear as it could be, but its outlines are known even if the precise dating is unclear. The name appears to derive from a previous game called 'conquerors' or 'conquering', in which snail shells are squeezed together, point to point, to see which will break first. The earliest description of this game was written by Robert Southey in 1821, recalling his childhood near Bristol in 1782. In parallel with this game, however, another existed from at least the mid-17th century in which hazel-nuts or cob-nuts were strung and knocked together, in the same way as our modern conkers. By the 1850s, horse-chestnuts and walnuts are mentioned, but the earliest known unambiguous reference to horse-chestnuts being used dates from the Every Boy's Book of 1856. It is clear that this game was not nearly as well known in the second half of the 19th century as one would expect from its ubiquity in the 20th. As Vick-ery points out, the entries in Britten and Holland's Dictionary of English Plant-Names (187886) imply that the game was known in certain parts of the country only.The modern game of conkers is replete with its own etiquette and terminology, including the scoring by which a victorious conker takes on the score of its defeated opponent (e.g. if a ten-er beats a six-er it becomes a seventeen-er, 10 + 6 + 1). Your opponent can stamp on your conker if you drop it unless you shout 'Bagsie no stampsies' first; a 'cheesecutter' was a conker with a flat side; the cry to claim first hit varies from place to place but always has to rhyme with 'conker':Iddy iddy onker, my first conker Iddy iddy oh, my first goAs with other children's games there are periodic worried questions whether the game of conkers is dying out, and there are also adult competitions during the season which are well reported in the national press.■ Opie and Opie, 1969: 227-32; Vickery, 1995: 189-97.
A Dictionary of English folklore. Jacqueline Simpson & Steve Roud. 2014.
Look at other dictionaries:
Conkers — est un jeu inventé en Grande Bretagne qui se pratique avec des marrons (spécifiquement les fruits du marronnier commun). Depuis le début des années 1990, la commune d Abjat sur Bandiat, en Dordogne, accueille chaque année à l automne le… … Wikipédia en Français
conkers — child s game played with horse chestnuts, originally with snail shells, 1847, probably a variant of CONQUER (Cf. conquer). The goal was to break the other player s item by hitting it with yours … Etymology dictionary
Conkers — For other uses, see Conker (disambiguation). A selection of fresh conkers from a horse chestnut tree. Conkers is a traditional English children s game played using the seeds of horse chestnut trees – the name conker is also applied to the seed… … Wikipedia
conkers — noun A game for two players in which the participants each have a horse chestnut (known as a conker ) suspended from a length of string and take it in turns to strike their opponents conker with their own with the object of destroying the… … Wiktionary
conkers — Everyday English Slang in Ireland n chestnuts … English dialects glossary
conkers — n pl Scottish balls (in both the literal and figurative slang senses). Like its contemporary syn onym clackers, the expression borrows the name of a children s game … Contemporary slang
conkers — conÂ·ker || kÉ’Å‹kÉ™ n. fruit of a chestnut; (British) string game played with chestnuts, type of game in which a child swings a conker with a string through it trying to break another child s conker with it … English contemporary dictionary
conkers — [treated as sing.] a children s game in which each has a conker on a string and tries to break another s with it. → conker … English new terms dictionary
conkers — Noun. Testicles. A Conker (British) is the hard shiny nut of the horse chestnut tree … English slang and colloquialisms
CONKERS — … Useful english dictionary