zeph_miran (zeph_miran) wrote in 30_games,
zeph_miran
zeph_miran
30_games

Rules: Oranges and Lemons

The Nursery Rhyme

"Oranges and lemons" say the Bells of St. Clement's
"You owe me five farthings" say the Bells of St. Martin's
"When will you pay me?" say the Bells of Old Bailey
"When I grow rich" say the Bells of Shoreditch
"When will that be?" say the Bells of Stepney
"I do not know" say the Great Bells of Bow
"Here comes a Candle to light you to Bed
Here comes a Chopper to Chop off your Head
Chip chop chip chop - the Last Man's Dead."

The song is used in a children's party game with the same name, in which the players file, in pairs, through an arch made by two of the players (made by having the players face each other, raise their arms over their head, and clasp their partners' hands). Three lines are added at the end:

Here comes a candle to light you to bed.
Here comes a chopper to chop off your head.
Chip chop, chip chop, the last man's dead.

On the last word, the children forming the arch drop their arms to catch the pair of children currently passing through, who are then "out" and must form another arch next to the existing one. In this way, the series of arches becomes a steadily lengthening tunnel through which each set of two players have to run faster and faster to escape in time. The game works best with a pianist to play the tune, so that unpredictable changes of tempo can be introduced.
Tags: oranges and lemons, rules
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