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Technical
CHAPTER I.
THE SLANG
< Preface
Croquet, 1864, Captain Mayne Reid
Transcribed by Dr Ian Plummer
1864 Croquet Lawn Setting CROQUET.
- The title of the game.
CROQUETERIE.
- The implements, viz. :- Balls, bridges, mallets, and stakes.
ROQUET.
- A ball makes "roquet" when, proceeding from a blow of the mallet, it comes in contact with another ball.
RE-ROQUET.
- To roquet the same ball twice, without any intervening action of the play.
THE CROQUET.
- A ball having made roquet on another, is taken up, and placed in contact with the ball on which it has roque'd. The player sets foot upon the former ; presses firmly, so as to hold it in place ; and, with a blow of the mallet, drives the roque'd ball in whatever direction may be desired.1
ROQUET-CROQUET, OR CROQUET SANS PIED.
- A ball having made roquet is taken up ; placed contiguous to the roque'd ball ; and, without being held under the foot, is struck by the mallet, and driven - as also the roque'd ball - in the direction desired.1
RICOCHET.
- A ball making roquet on two or more balls, by the same blow of the mallet.3
CONCUSSION.
- The displacement of a ball by another, driven against it by roquet, croquet, ricochet, or roquet-croquet ; and not hit directly, either by the mallet or the playing ball.
A BLOW.
- The stroke of the mallet.
A PUSH.
- When the player presses the ball forward with the mallet, instead of giving it a blow.4
A POINT.
- Making a success, viz. :- a point in the game.
A DOUBLE- POINT.
- Two points made by the same blow of the mallet.
A FLUKE.
- When a point is made not due to the skill of the player
A FLINCH.
- When the ball in the act of “croquet,” at the blow of the mallet, glides from under the foot of the player.
A TOUR OF PLAY.
- Is the turn given to each player. It continues so long as a point is made, and terminates with a failure.
THE ARENA.
- The space enclosed within the boundaries of the croquet ground.5
THE SPOT.
- The point from which the play commences.
THE STARTING STAKE.
- The stake from which the play pro­ceeds - placed proximate to the spot, at the lower end of the arena.
THE TURNING STAKE.
- The stake set opposite to the start­ing stake, and near the upper end of the arena.
THE FOOT.
- That part of the arena contiguous to the starting stake.
THE HEAD.
- That put of the arena contiguous to the turn­ing stake.
THE FLANKS.
- The sides of the rectangle - or of whatever figure play have been chosen for the croquet-ground. They are right and left.6
THE CENTRE.
- The central part of the arena.
CENTRAL BRIDGES.
- Those in a line between the two stakes. They are upper and lower.
FLANK BRIDGES.
- Those upon the flanks - also denominated right and left.
THE FRONT OF A BRIDGE
is that side, from which the player must proceed, in passing through or running it.
THE BACK OF A BRIDGE.
- The side reverse to the front.7
AN OBLIQUE BRIDGE.
- A bridge, the plane of whose arch is not perpendicular to the horizon, or to the course of play.
A PROPER BRIDGE.
- That which the player intends to pass through, is his, or her, proper bridge, for the time.
RUNNING A BRIDGE.
- When a ball has been driven through the arch of its proper bridge, either by a blow of the mallet, by roquet, croquet, ricochet, concussion or roquet-croquet, it is said to run that bridge.8
RUEING A BRIDGE.
- When a ball, struck by the mallet fails to reach the bridge at which it has been played, it is said to rue it.
OVERRUNNING A BRIDGE.
- When a ball, struck by the mal­let rolls past, and not through the bridge at which it has been played, it, is said to overrun it.
TOLLING THE STAKE.
- A ball struck against the turning stake by mallet, roquet, ricochet, concussion, croquet, or roquet-croquet, at its proper time, - that is, after having run the central and left flank bridges upward, - is said to toll or pay toll to the stake.
STRIKING OUT.
- A ball struck against the starting stake by mallet, roquet, ricochet, concussion, croquet, or roquet­-croquet after having run all the bridges - the central ones in both directions - and tolled the turning-stake, is struck out, that is, out of the game.
THE GRAND ROUND.
- The “grand round” consists in duly running all the bridges, - the central ones in both directions, - tolling the turning stake in its proper time, and returning to the spot, whence the player may either strike out, or continue play.
HALF ROUND.
- Having reached the point, where the turn­ing ; stare is to be tolled.
THE COURSE.
- The direction taken by the ball on its round.
POSITION.
- A ball is in position when it lies in front of its proper bridge, with a possibility of running it by a single blow of the mallet and out of position, when the contrary is the case.9
MAKING POSITION.
- Making roquet, or ricochet., on a ball already in position.
A FRIEND.
- A partner in the game.
AN ENEMY.
- An adversary.
A SIDE.
- A set of partners, or friends.
HELPING A FRIEND.
- Roque’ing, or croque’ing a friend's ball into position ; causing it to run a bridge, toll the turing stake, or otherwise forwarding it on its round.
SPOILING AN ENEMY.
- Striking an enemy's ball out of position, by roquet, croquet, ricochet, concussion, or roquet-croquet, and so retarding it on its round.
ATTACKING.
- Playing at an enemy's ball for the purpose of spoiling it.
NURSING.
- Croque'ing a ball - either friend or enemy - through, or around, its own proper bridge then running the bridge ; roque'ing and croque’ing the same ball again ; and so proceeding on the round.10
CLIMBING ON THE SCAPE-GOAT.
- Roque'ing a ball into a better position for the player ; so that the roque'ing ball may get in front of its own proper bridge, or obtain some other advantage of position.
THE CORNERS.
- The points of passage between the lines of flank and central bridges.
TURNING A CORNER.
- Proceeding from the flank to the central bridges, or vice versâ ; and running one or more of both in the same tour of play.11
A BOOBY.
- A ball that has attempted to run the first bridge, and either rues or overruns it.
A BRIDGED BALL.
- A ball that has run the first bridge.
THE LEADING BALL.
- The ball played first from the spot.
A ROVER.
- A ball that has made the grand round.
MARSHALLING THE SIDES.
- Making the match.
CHIEFS.
- The players selected to marshall the sides.
STRIKING FOR FIRST CHOICE.
- The chiefs “strike” for first choice of friends, by playing a ball at the starting stake from between the piers of bridge No. 1 ; whoever places the ball nearest to the stake has the choice.12
A DEAD BALL.
- A rover struck against the startling stake, and therefore struck out of the game.
VICTORY.
- When all of a side succeed in strikinq out.
“UP THE COUNTRY.”
- A ball croque'd beyond the boundaries is sent to “Hong Kong” or “up the country.” The owner, with an indifferent grace, stands gazing after it ; and the journey, required to bring it back within the arena, is usually performed with an air of the most profound melancholy, not unmingled with chagrin!

1 The operation of “croque’ing,”" or cracking the balls, being one of the most, important in the play, has given its title to the game. It is usual for the player while holding the ball under foot, to rest the heel upon the ground. This is a matter of choice ; as is also the foot to be used. Either will answer the requirements of the game.

2 Upon some croquet-grounds this operation is, called “taking two turns” – the playing ball, after making a collision, having the right to continue it play. This appellation, however, is as little rational as it is euphonious: since the croquet itself possess the same privilege.

Roquet-croquet is simply a croquet, without the without the interposition of the foot. As will be in the “Rules,” it is only allowable under certain circumstances.

3 Similar to the “cannon” in billiards.

4 Among some croquet-players the “push” is considered an undue advantage. It is only an advantage to beginners : as pushing a billiard ball might be to an inexperienced billiard player. Let the beginner have the choice. A “crack” croquet player will never covet the push.

5 For a fuller explanation of this, and several succeeding phrases, see Chapters II., III., and IV.

6 Not in reference to the head and foot of the arena, but to the position of the players, when standing by the starting stake, with their faces turned toward the ground.

7 The flank bridges have but one front ; as the ball is required to pass through them only in one direction. The central ones, on the contrary, have to be run both ways ; and their front, at any time, is determined by the ball’s position in the game. The left flank bridges front toward the foot of the ground, the right ones in the opposite direction, or toward its head.

8 As will be found by the “Rules,” passing through a bridge in any other way round than those mentioned above is not considered running it.

9 The position is good or bad, according to the distance and direction of the bridge from the ball.

10 Nursing is a species of play especially provoking to the “enemy”.

11 This can only be accomplished by climbing on the scape-goat, or making roquet or ricochet, on a ball already in position.

12 Equivalent to “stringing” in billiards. The chief who gains the strike has also the option of playing

< Preface
Croquet, 1864, Captain Mayne Reid
Transcribed by Dr Ian Plummer
All rights reserved © 2006-2017


Updated 28.i.16
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