This game was properly so called; for it made a man or undid him
in the twinkling of an eye.
It is played with only two dice; 20 persons may be engaged, or as
many as will. The chief things in the game are the Main and the
Chance. The chance is the caster's and the main is the setter's.
There can be no main thrown above 9, nor under 5; so that 5, 6,
7, 8, and 9 are all the mains which are flung at Hazard. Chances
and nicks are from 4 to 10. Thus 4 is a chance to 9, 5 to 8, 6
to 7, 7 to 6, 8 to 5, and 9 and 10 a chance to 5, 6, 7, and 8; in
short, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 are chances to any main, if any
of these 'nick' it not.
Nicks are either when the chance is the same with the main, as 5
and 5, 6 and 6, 7 and 7, and so on; or 6 and 12, 7 and 11, 8 and
12, where observe, that 12 is out to 9, 7, and 5, and 11 is out
to 9, 8, 6, and 5.
The better to illustrate the game we shall give an example. Let
7 be the main named. The caster throws 5, and that is his
chance; and so he has 5 to 7. If the caster throws his own
chance he wins all the money set to him by the setter; but if he
throws 7, which is the main, he must pay as much money as is on
If, again, 7 be the main, and the caster throws 11, that is a
nick, and sweeps away all the money on the table; but if he
throws a chance he must wait which will come first.
The worst chances in the game are 4 to 10, and 7 is considered
the best and easiest main to be thrown. It might be thought that
6 and 8 should admit of no difference in advantage to 7, but it
is just the reverse, although 6, 7, and 8 have eight equal