The Elizabethans played Nine Men's Morris as a board game, but during pagents, they also used children as counters while playing it on a field.

To play the game, you will need a board that looks somewhat like this. I could have gotten the boys to measure it out for added math experience, but we chose to do it freehand so we could get to the game.

If you want to measure it out the outermost square should be about 9 1/2 inches, the middle square, 6 1/2 inches and the innermost square about 3 1/2 inches. Leave about 1 1/4 inches between each square. Draw four lines connecting the midpoints of the squares. Draw circles at each of the corners and midpoints of the squares, for a total 24 points.

To play the game, two players each choose nine counters. The players take turns placing one counter at a time on an empty point on the game board. When all 18 counters have been placed, the players take turns moving one counter at a time along a line to the net empty point. Jumping over a counter is not allowed. Each player tries to make a row of three along any straight line with his counters. A row of three is called a "mill." On your next turn, you can move one of the counters from your pecious mill to get into position to form another mill. A player who makes a mill removes any one of the other player's counters from the board. You may, however, only remove a counter from the other player's existing mill if no other type of his counters are on the board. Once a counter has been removed, it is out of the game. The losing player is the o ne who has only two counters left on the board or who is blocked from moving.

Playing with the children as counters!?! That would be fun :)

ReplyDeleteI was trying to decide if the children as counters part would be a reward or a punishment. ;)

ReplyDeleteI have almost picked up that game about 20 million times, but maybe I just need to draw it on my yard and use the kids as counters.......

ReplyDeleteMy Dad used to make Nine Men Morris boards for craft fairs when I was a kid. I used to play it with my grandfather...

ReplyDeleteOne of our favorite games!

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