Progressive Games 131
pencil upon the cards and the star counters dispensed with.
The names of the guests are often written upon the backs of the cards and the partners' names given below them.
It is sometimes pleasant as a relief to the little awkwardness felt in the beginning of an evening in a society where there are many strangers if the hostess arrange to have friends play as partners for the first game.
The usual way of determining partners is to put the cards in two baskets, from one of which the ladies draw their cards on their arrival, from the other the gentlemen each taking one, and matching the cards or ribbons to determine the partners.
When all are seated, the hostess or leader rings a bell, and all set to work assiduously to play the game until the bell rings again, when all must stop. The completion of the game played at the head table determines the length of time allowed. But courtesy, of course, imposes the obligation of waiting a few moments if the game at some table is nearing its completion. If to finish it would require too long a detention, the two players who are ahead in the count are regarded as the winners.
At the first table the winners should remain where they are, the two who are worsted go to the sixth or last, and, at each table except the first, the winning players move to the one next above them. At each progression there is a change of partners, though some prefer to play the game by keeping the same partners to the end. The players mark their score-cards as a game is lost or won.
At the end of an hour or more, according to circumstances, the hostess rings a bell, the games are