The Ring | Greece

Name in Original Language

Το δαχτυλίδι

Area Where Played

Greece

History

Detailed Description

It is a team game popular mostly among younger children. It seems very plain and simple, but it actually requires observation and the ability not to show one’s emotions the moment the ring comes into one’s hands. It is one of the games played often in schoolyards, as every round lasts for a short while and it is relatively calm. For that reason, as children grow older it is played mostly by girls.

Rules

The game is played by several children, who sit around in a circle; their hands are joined together in front of them, but not clasping, rather leaving a space between them, which can hold something. One of the children called “mana” (mother)clasps in its hands a ring; it passes in front of the other children singing the song:
Πούν’το πούν’το το δαχτυλίδι
Ψάξε ψάξε δε θα το βρεις
Δε θα το βρεις, δε θα το βρεις
Το δαχτυλίδι που ζητείς.
(Where, where is the ring,
Look for it, look for it, you won’t find it
You won’t find it, you won’t find it
The ring that you are looking for)
While singing, the child passes its clasping hands over those of the other players and has to let the ring drop into someone else’s hands. Once done with the song, the other children have to guess who holds the ring. This requires good observation of the movements and expressions both of the mana and of the other players. Sometimes the player who receives the ring manages to hide it further, in a pocket, in a sleeve etc, which adds more interest to the game.
If the guess is correct, the child who made it gets to become “mana”, otherwise the former one continues.