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Dicing for Maids’ Money
Last Thursday in January

Dating from a 1674 legacy, two servant girls of Guildford throw a dice to win the prize of a year’s wage. The ceremony takes place at the Council Chamber, Guildford in Surrey England.

John How, a citizen of Guildford who died in 1674, left £400 in his will with instructions that two maid-servants should throw a dice for the interest of £11 9s. (The two maid-servants must have served for two years with good character in the town.) The maid who threw highest won the money.

Although the winner takes all the money, the loser actually comes of better financially. This is because in 1702 John Parsons, another benefactor, left £600 to be invested and the interest given each year to 'a poor young man' who had served a seven-year apprenticeship in the town. When, after a long period, no suitable applicant could be found, it was decided that the interest on John's Parson's bequest should go to the loser of the Maid's Money contest. As the amount is a few pence greater, the loser gains more!


What is the probability of throwing a six?
What about if you throw two dice?


Understanding old money

Also on this day ......

On 28 January 1807: London's Pall Mall becomes the first street anywhere to be illuminated by gaslight.

On 28 January 1874: Mary Tourtel 1874-1948 Creator of Rupert Bear was born

On 28 January 1986: the Space Shuttle Challenger exploded, Cape Canaverol in Florida.
The American space shuttle exploded killing all seven astronauts on board.
The five men and two women - including the first teacher in space - were just over a minute into their flight from Cape Canaveralwhen the Challenger blew up.

Why did the space shuttle explode?

An external fuel tank (solid rocket booster) carrying more than 1,892,500 litres (500,000 gallons - buckets fulls) of liquid hydrogen caught fire and the craft exploded.


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