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GOING TO JERUSALEM

GOING TO JERUSALEM

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Written by Hunter   
Monday, 17 November 2008 00:02

10 to 60 or more players.

Parlor; gymnasium; schoolroom.

A row of chairs is placed in the center of the room, so that they face alternately in opposite directions, one chair to one side, the next to the opposite side, etc. There should be one chair less than the number of players. The game is most interesting when played with musical accompaniment.

The game starts with all the players seated in the row of chairs except one. This odd one is the leader, and his first object is to recruit the players for his trip to "Jerusalem." He carries a cane and walks around the row repeating, "I'm going to Jerusalem! I'm going to Jerusalem!" in singsong. Every few moments he stops at his discretion and knocks with his cane on the floor behind the chair of some player. Immediately the player thus summoned rises from his chair and follows the leader, sometimes having a lively scramble to encircle the row of chairs and catch up with him. The next player knocked for follows this one, and so on, until all are moving around in single file. The leader may reverse his direction at pleasure. This general hurry and confusion for the start may, with a resourceful leader, add much to the sport of the game.

When the players are all recruited, they continue to march around the row of chairs, the main object of the game being the scramble for seats when the music stops, or upon some other signal to sit if there be no music.

The musician will add to the interest of the game by varying the time of the march from slow and stately time to "double quick." At any moment, after all the players are marching, the music may stop suddenly. Whenever this happens, the players all scramble for seats. There will be one odd player left without a seat. This player is thenceforth out of the game and retires to one end of the room, taking with him one of the chairs. This continues until there are only two players encircling one chair, and the one who secures it wins.

Where two players reach a chair at nearly the same time, the chair belongs to the one who first reached it, or who is sitting more fully on it. Sitting on the arm of a chair does not count, nor touching it with the hands or knees.

FOR THE GYMNASIUM.—When played in a gymnasium, a row of gymnasium stools may be used instead of chairs, and the gathering up of the players omitted, the game starting with the stools empty.

FOR THE SCHOOLROOM.—When played in the schoolroom, the game starts with all of the players ready to march, the first part of the game, in which they are recruited, being omitted. The class should march in serpentine form up one aisle and down the next, etc., instead of encircling a row of seats. There should be for a large class from one to six less seats than the number of players. For instance, one seat should be counted out in each row or each alternate row. The seat that is not in play may be designated by turning it up, if of that variety, and by placing a book on the desk belonging to it.

Wherever played, the game may be carried on without music, simply by the leader or teacher beating time and stopping when players are to sit; or he may give a signal or a command to "Sit!"

 
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