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Marble tournaments had been around since the 1580s, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I - a marbles game was used as a deciding game where two suitors, named Giles and Hodge, of a maiden of Tinsley Green battle to decide who will take her hand.

There are several variation of the rules, so it depends on where you are playing. In one version, the goal of the game is to get all of your own marbles into a hole first. In another popular version, there is no hole, and the aim is to knock all the marbles out of a ring by aiming a larger "shooter" marble called the "tolley".

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There are rival events which claim to be the World Championships of Marbles. The Greyhound pub at Tinsley Green hosts an annual competition called the British and World Marbles Championships, attracting players from all over the world, this event has been held since 1932, and marbles games have been held at this location for much longer. A more recent event, the World Marbles Championships, organized by the World Marbles Federation, has been held in Prague Czechia since 2005.

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