While idling away my time in the Cambridge Folk Museum recently I came upon an old Poster advertising "Rustic Sports" which were held in Cambridge to celebrate the Coronation of Queen Victoria. I tried photographing it but there's no way that I can make it big enough so that you'll be able to read it. So here it is printed out in all its bygone glory...
In Celebration of the CORONATION of her Most Gracious
Majesty QUEEN VICTORIA
On THURSDAY the 28th day of JUNE, 1838
The Committee appointed for conducting the RUSTIC SPORTS on the approaching
Festival announce to the Public that the following Amusements will commence
precisely at Four o'clock in the afternoon,
ON MIDSUMMER GREEN.
OR, HOW TO RISE IN LIFE !
Well-soaped scaffold poles, stuck up indifferently out of the perpendicular - will be climed for, by youthful and unsophisticated Cantabs, for Breeches, Legs of Mutton, &c. &c. If any competitor obtains an elevation two yards higher than the top of the pole - it is no go!
Jumping in Sacks.
A distance of 50 yards by Six Men. Each man to jump in a 4-bushel sack (to be provided by himself for the occasion.) The winner to receive a New Pair of Boots - Second best, a New Hat warranted to fit. - The Third, a Pair of Shoes.
Twelve Boys to eat a Pennyworth of Biscuits each. The first shall have a Victoria Waistcoat, Second a
New White Beaver Tile. Third, a regular out-and-out Wide -awake.
A J I N G L I N G M A T C H,
Or, Blind Buff and the Bellman.
The Match will take place in a 24ft roped ring, between 12 young Men, (not less than 18 years of age) for a New pair of Cord Trowsers. The time allowed for the match is 16 minutes; and the Bellman will not be allowed to silence his bell longer than 30 seconds at one time.
By Ten Men blindfolded. The winner in this match to receive a pair of High Shoes. Second best a pair of
Low Shoes. Third best. a Melton Mowbray cravat, or Coronation Stock!
ROYAL PIG RACES.
By 10 men. The tail to be soaped. The First man who twice catches it by the tail, and fairly suspends it over his shoulder to receive the Pig as a prize.
An Elegant, Pie-bald Short-legged Well-fed Curley-tailed Pig
to be run for and caught in the same manner as the first pig for the same prize. - Also two other Royal Pig Races - on the same terms
G R I N N I N G M A T C H
OR, WHICH IS THE UGLIEST PHIZ ! !
This Match will be contested by Men of all ages, and all complexions - alldescriptions of physiognomy - and every degree of ugliness and beauty - whether short or tall, little or big, green or grey - and must be performed according to the usual customs on these occasions, exhibiting, in Grimaldian excellence and bold relief, the various Contortions of "the Human Face divine" by peeping through a Pegasian Cravat -or, as the vulgar would profanely designate it - a Horse's Collar! The party who shall be declared the winner will be rewarded with a bran new pair of Velveteen trousers and a New Wipe. The other competitors will be rewarded with a gallon of Sam Moore's regular right sort, Head-strong, Out-and-out, Strong-bodied, Ram-jam, Come-it-strong, Lift-me-up, Knock-me-down, How-do-ye-like-it, Gen-u-ine Midsummer Green Stingo! and a New Hat each.
A RAM RACE
To be run for - a Gigantic RAM, of stature and speed remarkable - Positively descended from the Great Derby Ram
By Boys in a Tub of Meal, for Sixpences.
PENNY LOAVES AND TREACLE
By Six Boys, with their hands tied behind them, for a New Hat.
Twelve Men, (not less than 14 stone weight) to run 100 yards. All complexions eligible -(no bandy legs.) First, New pair Boots. Second, Pair Cord Trousers. Third, Pair of Velveteen Inexpressibles.
YOUNG LAD'S MATCH.
Six lads, whose ages will not exceed 15 next grass, to run 100 yards. The winner to receive a pound of the best Souchongacutamaranchoochorigdumfefafumrumpecoeannuscoronatiomirabilis-flavoured Gunpowder Tea & Pair of Shoes! Second Best, A New hat!- Third best, A Waterloo waistcoat.
Twelve Boys, not exceeding 14 years, to run 100 yards. (Three heats) Winner a New Hat. 2d pair Trousers. 3d pair shoes.
DIPPING FOR EELS,
By Six Boys. First prize a New Hat. Second, a Pair of High lows.
By not less than 4 Men, for a New Hat. Second best a Coronation Neckcloth. Rolling in River No Prize!
A WHISTLING MATCH
By Six old men, for a new Copper Tea Kettle. The Second best to have a Tin Kettle and Tobacco. TUNE - "GOD SAVE THE QUEEN"
For a handsome New Bridle and a Splendid Whip.
The several Donkeys entered for this Prize will not be ridden by the Owners, but will be contended for after the manner of the feats adopted by the ancients - each Donkey must be rode by an opposite party, not being the Rider of the same Donkey in the last race, and the last Donkey in to be declared the Winner. The Winner to receive a New Bridle.
WITH A VARIETY OF OTHER SPORTS.
The commencement of each sport will be announced by the ringing of a bell.
No carriages, horses, or donkeys, will be suffered on the Ground, except rode by the Stewards, and no stalls or booths erected, but under the direction of the Committee.
Contributions for the Sports sent to Mr Bridges Auction Mart, addressed to the Committee of Sports, will be thankfully received.
STEWARDS - HEZEKIAH MUGGINS and JEM CROW - CLERK OF THE SPORTS - JEREMIAH WHIPWELL.
A Grand Display of FIREWORKS
will take place on Parker's Piece at 10 o'clock.
[S. WILSON, PRINTER