Blind Man's Buff

   One of the oldest and most consistently popular of traditional games, played in the past by adults (especially at *Christmas family gatherings) as well as children. In basic form, one player is blindfolded, turned around a few times to disorient him/ her, and either has to catch other players or to catch and identify them. Earlier names for the game were Hoodman Blind, and the Hood-winke Play, as a reversed hood is an effective blindfold, and it is clear from earlier descriptions and illustrations that the game could be much rougher than it tends to be nowadays, with the blindfolded player being buffeted by the knotted hoods of the others. The game is first mentioned by name in the 16th century, although Strutt reprints manuscript illustrations dating from the 14th century which are clearly the same game. Samuel Pepys records in his Diary for 26 December 1664: 'and so home to bed, where my people and wife innocently at cards, very merry. And I to bed, leaving them to their sport and blindman's buff', and the game is also mentioned regularly in literary sources over the centuries. The Opies give references to foreign analogues, and Gomme supplies rhymes which were used in some versions of the game.
   ■ Gomme, 1894: i. 37-40; Opie and Opie, 1969: 117-20; Strutt, 1801 (1876): 499-501.

A Dictionary of English folklore. . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • blind man's buff — blind man’s buff UK US noun [uncountable] a children’s game in which one player has their eyes covered with a blindfold and tries to catch the others Thesaurus: children s gameshyponym to perform an action in a card gamehyponym Variant: blind man …   Useful english dictionary

  • blind man's buff — (US also blind man s bluff) ► NOUN ▪ a game in which a blindfold player tries to catch others while being pushed about by them. ORIGIN from buff «a blow», from Old French …   English terms dictionary

  • blind|man's buff — «BLYND MANZ BUHF», 1. a game in which a blindfolded person tries to catch one of several other players and tell who he is. 2. Figurative: »Government by blindman s buff (Thomas Carlyle). ╂[buff < buffet] …   Useful english dictionary

  • blind man's buff — or ,blind man s bluff noun uncount a children s game in which one player has their eyes covered with a BLINDFOLD and tries to catch the others …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • blind man's buff — UK / US or blind man s bluff UK / US noun [uncountable] a children s game in which one player has their eyes covered with a blindfold and tries to catch the others …   English dictionary

  • blind man's buff — n [U] a children s game in which one player whose eyes are covered tries to catch the others …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Blind man's buff — Blindman s buff Blind man s buff , Blind man s buff Blind man s buff [See {Buff} a buffet.] A game in which one person is blindfolded, and tries to catch some one of the other players, and tell who it is. [1913 Webster] Surely he fancies I play… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • blind man's buff — (US also blind man s bluff) noun a game in which a blindfold player tries to catch others while being pushed about by them. Origin C17: from buff a blow , from OFr. bufe (see buffet2) …   English new terms dictionary

  • blind man's buff — noun a game in which a blindfolded player tries to catch and identify the others. Also, blind man s bluff. {from buff2, with reference to the blows administered by the participants or the central player; reinterpreted as a bluff2 or a trick} …   Australian English dictionary

  • blind man’s buff — (AmE alsoblindman’s bluff) n [U] a children’s game, played at parties, in which a player whose eyes have been covered tries to catch and identify the other players. ➡ note at toys and games. * * * …   Universalium

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.