The game of Base was primarily a game played by youth, but anyone of any age can play. Though the rules of this game were first recorded in the Seventeenth Century, evidence of play dates back to the early 1400’s. Variations of this game.

Rules of Play

  • Two teams of players are needed for this game. Teams should be equal in number.
  • Each team has a designated base and a prison.
  • One player on each side touches the base and the remaining players on each team form a chain from the first player.
  • The outermost player from one team breaks out by leaving his chain.
  • The outermost player from the opposing team may chase him or her, and if caught, takes him or her to his own prison where a chain is formed.
  • The remaining outermost players of each team break the chain, in turn, and seek to capture the last player leaving the chain on the opposing team.
  • If any player can reach the prison of the opposing team, those prisoned players are freed and may walk back to the chain at their base without being caught again.

Winning the Game

The first team to imprison all of the players from the opposing team wins the game.


Singman, J. L., & McLean, W. (1995). Daily Life in Chaucer’s England. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.

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