• Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Barleybrake An ancient rural game, commonly played round stacks of barley, or other grain, in which some of the party attempt to catch others who run from a goal.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n barleybrake An old game played by six persons, three of each sex, formed into couples. Three contiguous plots of ground were chosen, and one couple, placed in the middle plot, attempted to catch the others as they passed through. The middle plot was called hell, whence the allusions in old plays to “the last couple in hell.”
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