Submitted by jays on 28 January 2014 - 3:01pm

Two-up is a game of chance which involves people standing around a circular ring and betting on which side two coins thrown high into the air from a ‘kip’ will land. It is inextricably linked in the Australian psyche with ‘diggers’, a term for Australian soldiers, and in most places can only be played legally on ANZAC day. It has many different rituals associated with it, including the call ‘Come in Spinner’ which is a call made for the coins to be tossed once all bets have been laid. Police would raid games and arrest any participants they could catch. In Sydney some players met on wharves where they could escape by diving into the water. Others went to large, illicit Two-up schools which operated in the inner suburbs. Proving that a game had occurred could sometimes be difficult as the coins could be pocketed and the wooden kip thrown away. Offenders were generally fined a small amount of money by the courts.

Photograph: Jamie North, 2013
Two up game pieces consisting of two wooden 'kips' and two Australian pennies, date unknown Two up game pieces consisting of a wooden 'kip' and two Australian pennies, date unknown Two up game pieces consisting of two wooden 'kips' and two Australian pennies, date unknown
Portrait
Justice & Police Museum
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JP2012/10