GIRDING UP THE LOINS.
on the opposite page. The game causes much merriment and laughter, and is pursued with great spirit. A similar game is played in Cochin China,* but with a shuttlecock made of dried skin rolled round and bound with strings, into which feathers are inserted.
Most young men learn to box and wrestle, and a proficient in them is always held in high esteem and respect. In boxing, " tripping up," and striking with the knee and foot,| as well as the fist, are allowable. Wrestling is pursued in the same manner as with us, throwing on the back constituting the victory.
On holidays or festive occasions the most common diversions are boxing and wrestling. Ground for the ring is prepared and made soft with moistened sand, and around it the spectators sit or stand, a scaffolding being erected on one side for the umpires and " heads of the people." As is the practice at every festival, a band of music is in attendance, and plays during the combats. No severe or cruel punishment is allowed, and " the first drop of claret tapped," or blood drawn from a cut lip, or elsewhere, decides the fight. To determine this point, curious
* See Macartney's " Embassy to China," vol. i., p. 339.
+ It must be remembered that they wear no boots or shoes on these occasions. I have seen a severe fall given by the foot being caught in an attempt at a high kick, and a very awkward blow given under the chin by the knee.+ It must be remembered that they wear no boots or shoes on these occasions. I have seen a severe fall given by the foot being caught in an attempt at a high kick, and a very awkward blow given under the chin by the knee.