Hi Thanks to Sam for the following…
Joseph Addison, essayist, poet, playwright and general all round ‘smart arse’ in 1700 spent some time in France and describes a strange game he witnessed. Sounds much like a Sunday morning in Headingley….
“Whoever starts the game carefully observes the placing of the small ball, being a target to be reached, and lets fly his ball. When a large number of balls surround the target and makes, one could say, a rampart making the reaching of the target difficult and great care needs be tuke in order to arrive gently near to it. A player has seen his ball crawle languidly and slow suddenly, despite the motion he had applied. He followed it step by step wavering about. The progress being too slow to save his honour, he accuses the unevenness of the field and the humps that it meets … but the praise and glory are reserved for those who without deviating or slowing pass thro’ all the others and are victorious by resting on the target.”