ids have been playing marbles and marble-like games for thousands of years. It's likely your parents and even your grandparents were playing marbles when they were young.
It is thought that marbles began with cave people playing with small pebbles or balls of natural clay. Clay balls have also been found in the tombs of Egypt, and in Native American burial grounds as well as the ancient Aztec pyramids.
The earliest book on marbles was written in England in 1815, it reveals that marbles of the time were made of china, clay, glass or even real marble.
Around 1848 a German glass blower invented marble scissors, a device used to make marbles.
The first machine made marbles were made in Germany in 1890 and later that year in the United States.
The 1950's saw the marble extravaganza. In Japan the cats eye marble was created by injecting colored glasses into a regular marble. Colored glass was used and ways to add swirls and different materials were developed.
Names given to marbles vary considerably place to place. The best marbles are often known as Alleys. A marble actually being used by a player is often called a Taw or a shooter.
Marble games are generally played with the cheaper glass marbles. When expensive alleys are used in games where fines are imposed, or where marbles are lost and won, it should be agreed in advance that fines or losses should be paid in cheap marbles and not alleys.
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