Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Dice and Gambling

I started to write about gambling, but got sidetracked by the fascinating (to me) history of dice. Did you know that a 5000 year old backgammon game was found in what is now Iran, complete with dice? Dice and dicing figure in very old Indian and Hindu texts. The Bible mentions "casting lots", so they were there, too. Women and children threw knucklebones to gamble in those days. I'm not quite sure how that would work, but it apparently did. The "knucklebones" were made from the ankle bones of horses. Someone thought an ankle was a knuckle, I guess.

Dice have also been made of wood and ivory and, today, plastic. They've had several different shapes, too, but the six-sided one prevails.

It's interesting that the pips--the dots--are arranged differently on Asian dice. They're closer together than on Western dice. Is that because Asia is more crowded and they pull everything in tight? Probably not.

I remember my sons playing with these odd-shaped dice. Maybe they were for Dungeons and Dragons.

As for gambling, I was going to talk about what a gamble it is to write a book, but maybe I'll do that another day.

A lot of my info and all of the pictures are from

PS. I'm a guest at two blogs today: Kristi Belcamino and Sheila Boneham. Come on by!

1 comment:

  1. hi i like the images you add on this blog thanks i am enjoying very much
    Trekking Uttarakhand