FROM GULLGROPERS TO HELLS AND HATCHES
The Regency Gaming Glossary
Historical Tidbit Offered by Mary Spencer, author of DARK WAGER, LADY'S WAGER and DEVIL'S WAGER.
Gambling was one of the most popular (and expensive!) forms of entertainment during the Regency era, so much so that gamesters developed their own peculiar terms and "gaming cant." The following is a glossary of words that every self-respecting Regency gambler would use to the full.
Children in the wood - dice
Cleaned out - having lost all your money, beaten, ruined
Dispatchers - false dice
Done up - ruined by gambling
Elbow shaker - a gamester casting dice
Fulhams - loaded dice
Gulled - deceived or cheated
Gullgropers - money lenders
Hatches - in debt ("Under the hatches")
Hells - gambling houses
High-flyers - gamblers for high stakes
Legs - bookmaker
Nick - to win at dice or hit the mark just in the nick of time
Ready - the money
Vowel - an I.O.U. "To vowel a debt"
Glossary information came from The Regency Companion by Sharon Laudermilk and Teresa L. Hamlin