Saturday, October 15, 2011

Word Games Are A Teaching Aide As Well As Fun

I suppose in today's information blizzard the game of Hangman doesn't cause anyone - child or adult - to experience fear and cold sweats. I don't think that can be said of first time participants in Victorian times. Back in those days the term hangman conjured up thoughts of crime and punishment and definitely wasn't considered entertainment.

In fact, Hangman is one of the oldest word games. To quote Tony Aulard of "The Oxford Guide To Word Games", "The origins of Hangman are obscure, but it seems to have arisen in Victorian Times." 1. In 1894 Alice Bertha Gomme`s book "Traditional Games" it appears under the name "Birds, Beasts and Fishes" in its simplest form. The first and last letter of a word is listed and the player fills in the blanks. 2.