The rules for this game may be found in the 17th C. book The Complete Gamester by Cotton. The game was very popular and endured for a considerable time.
One die is rolled and the highest begins play. The first player rolls two dice. The object is to fall within the main, any number between 5 and 9. Once the main is rolled the player continues to roll and depending upon the total of the pips he will either win, lose or continue rolling.
If the player rolls a two or three, they lose (rolling a two or three after rolling the main is always a loss). Rolling a two is called an ames-ace.
Depemding on what number is rolled in the main, differing secondary rolls may result in a win...
Any roll outside the main on the first roll is called a mark. The player must then continue to roll and hit the mark to win. If they roll in the main they lose. If the player wins they continue to roll. If they lose play goes to the next player.
- If the number rolled was a five or a nine, the player need only roll within the main to win. A win is called a nick. If he rolls an eleven or a twelve they lose.
- If the main is six or eight, the player must roll the main or a twelve to win. If they roll an eleven they lose.
- If the main was a seven, the player must roll the main or an eleven to win. If they roll a twelve they lose.