Culture 6, page 117
1 d / f
2 f / d
1 private schools
2 state schools
3 senior judges
4 senior officers in the armed forces
Three schools are mentioned. (Eton College, Rugby College, Westminster School)
Presenter In this part of the programme, I'm going to talk to David Brown, who's written a book about English public schools. David, welcome. Why did you choose this topic?
Guest Well, I didn't actually go to a public school myself -I went to an ordinary state school - but I've always been fascinated by the idea of them, and by their traditions. And I'm sure I'm not the only one. In fact, since I wrote my book, I've met lots of other people who share my interest.
Presenter Really? Now, in your book, you describe quite a few of these traditions. For example, the Eton Wall Game is a very old tradition. It dates back to ... when exactly?
Guest 1766. Yes, it's a game that is played only at Eton College. It's a bit like football, but the pitch is very narrow and it's next to a wall. Each team has to get the ball to the end of the wall. If they do that, they score a goal. But it's so difficult to score that the last goal was in 1909, more than a hundred years ago!
Presenter Are there any other unusual games played at public schools?
Guest Well, of course the sport of rugby gets its name from the public school where it was first played: Rugby College. The story is that during a game of ordinary football in 1823, a boy named William Webb Ellis picked up the ball and ran with it - so he invented the sport of'rugby football'. That sport is now played all over the world. But the Eton Wall Game isn't! In fact I think it is still only played at Eton.
Presenter Well, with one goal every hundred years, I'm not surprised.
Guest And then there's the Greaze.
Presenter The Greaze?
Guest Yes, the Greaze - G-R-E-A-Z-E. It's a game that's played once a year, on pancake day, at Westminster School. The school cook makes a special pancake with horse hair in it, to make it stronger.
Presenter That sounds disgusting. Horse hair?
Guest Yes, but they don't eat it. The cook throws the pancake in the air and the students fight over it for one minute. The student that gets the largest piece of the pancake is the winner and receives a prize - a gold coin. Then the whole school has a half-day holiday.
Guest Yes. And in the past, there was another part of the tradition. If the cook didn't throw the pancake high enough, all the students threw their Latin books at him. But that doesn't happen now.
Presenter That's good. Poor cook! Well, it sounds like a fascinating book. David Brown, thank you very much.