Hot Cockles is always mentioned in old accounts of Christmas festivities, and is probably one of the oldest of games. A player, kneeling down, conceals his face in the lap of anotheróbut on his back places one hand, the palm turned outward. Each person of the company then advances in turn and administers a slap on the open hand, the person kneeling meanwhile trying to guess, without looking, to whom he owes his punishment. If he guess correctly, the one whom he has detected must take his place. There is a famous painting of monks playing at "Hot Cockles" in their monastery garden, called " Main-chaude," the French name of the old game.
Certain games belong equally to Christmas and to Hallowe'en, of which one is
A number of raisins are placed in a dish and alcohol is poured over them and set on fire. The object is to withdraw them one by one. If done very quickly, the fingers will not be burned.
This game always makes no end of fun. In an ac≠cessible place a tub of water is set, into which a number of apples with long stems are thrown. Each contestant in turn kneels before the tub and tries to secure an apple by its stem, between his teeth. The one who captures the greatest number has a prize and is crowned with the apple-parings.
As the evening wears on, the fun waxes fast and furious. Any self-respecting garret in a country house should have the wherewithal to furnish costumes for the "Christmas Mummers." Any bits of old-time