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Thursday, November 26, 2009

What is knur and spell?

A word game? A Viking singing duo? A witch’s curse? No, knur and spell is a little-known game that has been played in the Pennine area of Northern England for the last 300 years.
The game has a terminology all its own. The knur is a small baked clay ball, sometimes known as a potty. The spell is a wooden structure something like a miniature gallows, from which the knur is suspended. The players-known locally as laikers – must hit the knur with a long sycamore cane, the laiker whose knur travels furthest being the winner. The game had almost died out until recently, but now there has been lots of new interest, and a world championship is planned.

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