The Traditional Children's Games of England Scotland
& Ireland In Dictionary Form - Volume 2

With Tunes(sheet music), Singing-rhymes(lyrics), Methods Of Playing with diagrams and illustrations.

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SNAIL CREEP
207
catch the player who has the Gig before reaching the Nestie. If this is done the same players again hide the Gig, but if the Gig is discovered, the players discovering it now hide it.
At Old Aberdeen sides are chosen, then a small article (such as a knife) is made the gig. Then one side, determined by a toss, goes out and smuggles the gig and cries out, "Smuggle the gig." Then the other side rushes in and tries to catch the one that has the "gig." If the one that has the gig is free, the same side goes out again.—Rev. W. Gregor.
See " Gegg."
Snail Creep
In Mid-Cornwall, in the second week of June, at St. Roche, and in one or two adjacent parishes, a curious dance is per­formed at their annual "feasts." It enjoys the rather un­dignified name of " Snail Creep," but would be more properly called the " Serpent's Coil." The following is scarcely a perfect description of it:—" The young people being all assembled in a large meadow, the village band strikes up a simple but lively air and marches forward, followed by the whole assemblage, leading hand-in-hand (or more closely linked in case of engaged couples), the whole keeping time to the tune with a lively step. The band, or head of the serpent, keeps marching in an ever-narrowing circle, whilst its train of dancing followers becomes coiled around it in circle after circle. It is now that the most interesting part of the dance commences, for the band, taking a sharp turn about, begins to retrace the circle, still followed as before, and a number of young men, with long leafy branches in their hands as standards, direct this counter movement with almost military precision."—W. C. Wade (Western Antiquary, April 1881).
A game similar to the above dance is often played by Sunday school children in West Cornwall, at their out-of-door summer treats, called by them " Roll tobacco." They join hands in one long line, the taller children at their head. The first child stands still, whilst the others in ever-narrowing circles dance around singing until they are coiled into a tight mass. The outer coil then wheels sharply in a contrary







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