9 Drinking Games People Were Playing Centuries Ago

8. Passatella

Where it was played: Passatella was a traditional game mainly played in Southern Italy and possibly dates back to antiquity. It was banned in the 19th century due to its violent nature, but people continued to play it regardless. How it was played: A game of Passatella usually involved at least five people, who would each put forward some money into a collective alcohol fund. By a method such as cutting the deck, a boss or 'padrone' would be chosen. He could then pick an underboss or 'sotto-padrone' and sometimes he also picked an idiot. The padrone would buy a tray of shots with the group's money. He drank the first one, then the sotto-padrone could allocate the others to the rest of the group. Players were often humiliated by being denied requests for the alcohol, and the padrone usually got more than his fair share. The idiot, if one was allocated, had to keep his hands placed on the table at all times while the other players abused him and withheld the alcohol that he had paid for. Those who had been humiliated in the last round sought vengeance the next time they were selected as padrone or sotto-padrone. However, the majority of passatella games ended in violence when one or more players had not seen a drop of alcohol from the money that they donated. There are a lot of accounts of people being injured and killed after playing this unfair game.
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