At English schools in the 1950 and 60s, the standard punishment for serious or repeated offences was the cane. At my school canings were always given in private, so none of us knew exactly how many strokes other boys got, but we always assumed it was six. Why did six become the standard dose, I wonder? Or perhaps it wasn't so standard, and "six of the best" is a sort of urban myth? Did anyone ever get more than six?