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An unusual English game and pastime.

CONQUERING CONKERS
How to fight
with conkers!
ARE THERE ANY UNUSUAL SPORTS OR GAMES FROM YOUR COUNTRY?
IN THE AUTUMN, THE ENGLISH LIKE TO PLAY CONKERS.

A
conker is the seed of schoolchildren, but many Conkers have been
a horse-chestnut tree. adults play too. There’s in the news a lot GLOSSARY
a seed n
It’s small, round, dark even an annual conker recently. In 2004, one the part of a plant from which other
plants grow
brown in colour, and competition: The World headmaster told his a drill n
perfect for conker fights. A conker Conker Championships. pupils they would a tool for making holes in things
a knot n
fight is simple, but the preparation It’s held every year have to wear goggles if you tie a “knot” in a piece of
Michael
can be complicated. First, you on the second Palin if they wanted to string, you pass one end of it
through a loop and pull it tight
need to find a good, strong Sunday in October in play. He was worried hard adv
if you hit something “hard”, you use
conker. Then, you need to put a the ancient market town of about possible injuries. Several a lot of force to hit it
hole in it. You can do this with a Oundle (Northamptonshire). other schools banned conker to be held (in a place) exp
if an event is “held” in a place, it
drill. Next, you place a piece of There are two categories: The fighting. In 1993, ex-Monty happens there
string through the hole and tie Men’s Competition and the Python actor Michael Palin was a market town n
the main town in an agricultural
a knot at one end. Now, your Ladies’ Competition. British disqualified from a conker area – usually one where a market
is regularly held
conker is ready for a conker fight. men have won every year competition for cheating (he a headmaster n
except 1976 when Mexican had baked his conker and the male director of a school
goggles n
Fighting with conkers is great fun. Jorge Ramirez won the Men’s soaked it in vinegar - typical special glasses to protect your eyes
You and your opponent stand Competition final, and in 1998 methods for hardening your to ban vb
to prohibit
facing one another with your when Helmut Kern of Germany conker). Some argue that to disqualify vb
if you are “disqualified” from a
conkers ready. Then, you take won. British women have “artificially” hardening your game/competition, you cannot
turns trying to hit one another’s won every year except for conker is against the spirit of compete in it
to cheat vb
conker. Each player holds their 2000 when Selma Becker of the game. Others say it’s a valid to do something dishonest in a
conker and fires it at their Austria took the title, and in tactic. So, will you be playing game/competition
to bake vb
opponent’s conker. The objective 2001 when Frenchwoman conkers this season?  to cook in an oven (an electrical
appliance for cooking food)
of the game is to break the other Celine Parachou won. Other to soak vb
person’s conker – which is usually famous festivals include the For more information on the if you “soak” something in a liquid,
you put it in that liquid for a period
achieved by hitting it as hard as Poulton International Conker World Conker Championship, of time
you can. Festival, which takes place in visit: http:// www. to harden vb
to make harder. “Hard” is the
The game is popular amongst Gloucestershire. worldconkerchampionships.com opposite of “soft”

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