23 06, 2017

When did people learn to swim?

By |2018-04-20T22:35:36-07:00June 23rd, 2017|Games|0 Comments

African swimming (Gilf Kebir cave, Libya, ca. 8000 BC) Many animals can swim. Probably people have always been able to swim too. The very earliest human people lived along the seacoast in Africa, and gathered shells from the ocean, so they would have needed to swim. Certainly by 8000 BC African people were [...]

23 06, 2017

Who invented playing cards? China

By |2018-04-20T08:23:52-07:00June 23rd, 2017|China, Games, What|0 Comments

An early playing card (Ming Dynasty, ca. 1500 AD) People in T'ang Dynasty China made the first playing cards, about 800 AD. They used their new material, paper, to make the cards, and they called their game "the leaf game". The emperor's daughter, Princess Tongchang, played cards with her husband's family in the [...]

23 06, 2017

Swimming in the Middle Ages

By |2017-06-23T22:29:33-07:00June 23rd, 2017|Games, Medieval|0 Comments

Women swimming in the Seljuk kingdom (1494 AD) The fall of the Roman Empire and the Sassanian Empire in the 500s AD doesn't seem to have made much difference to swimming. People in the medieval Islamic Empire kept right on swimming. Women and men still swam, naked as always. Men and women [...]

23 06, 2017

History of games: What kind of games?

By |2019-07-01T10:29:06-07:00June 23rd, 2017|Games, History|0 Comments

History of games: Egyptian girls playing a piggyback ball toss game What were the first games? There have been toys and games since before there were people; even young chimpanzees carry around wooden sticks as dolls and pretend they are babies. Gambling games and dolls History of board games Early African games What [...]

23 06, 2017

Gambling games and dolls – History of games

By |2019-07-01T08:45:17-07:00June 23rd, 2017|Games|0 Comments

Gambling games: Greek girls playing knucklebones (ca. 200 BC, now in British Museum) People loved to gamble Gambling games were very popular all over the world from as early as we can tell. People played games with knucklebones and cowrie shells, and with flat sticks. Early African games Mesopotamian games Ancient Indian games [...]

23 06, 2017

History of dice – When were dice invented?

By |2019-05-07T11:06:28-07:00June 23rd, 2017|Games, West Asia|0 Comments

Early dice from ancient Egypt: History of dice How old are dice? People have been playing dice games for a very long time. The very first dice were just sheep knucklebones, and you won if it landed on the right one of the four flat sides. People have been throwing knucklebones since at [...]

23 06, 2017

Who invented board games?

By |2019-02-20T21:11:22-07:00June 23rd, 2017|Africa, Games|0 Comments

King Tutankhamon's Senet Board (ca. 1300 BC) When were the first board games? People were playing board games earlier than we have any records. Probably the first board games were scratched into dirt. People played with stones or fruit pits for pieces. History of games Games in ancient Africa All our Africa articles What's [...]

23 06, 2017

When was backgammon invented?

By |2019-02-08T05:30:40-07:00June 23rd, 2017|Central Asia, Games|1 Comment

Royal Game of Ur (2600 BC; British Museum) Backgammon's from older board games Backgammon is descended from much older board games from Africa and West Asia like Senet and Tabula and Nard. History of board games More West Asian games All our West Asia articles It's probably most closely related to the Royal [...]

23 06, 2017

Wrestling, Martial Arts, and Olympics – History of Sports

By |2018-04-20T08:29:29-07:00June 23rd, 2017|Games|0 Comments

Sports history: The Discus-Thrower (ca. 450 BC) The earliest sports Indo-European people like Central Asians and the Greeks had a very strong tradition of athletic competition. Competing in, and winning, athletic competitions was for them a kind of religious ritual, as well as being good training for soldiers. Central Asian people had a [...]

23 06, 2017

History of swimming in the Americas

By |2018-04-20T08:23:49-07:00June 23rd, 2017|Games, North America, South America|0 Comments

Aztec swimmer from Teotihuacan (ca. 500 AD) The first people who came to the Americas probably already knew how to swim, as they got their food from fishing and gathering shellfish and seaweed. Aztec paintings from the 500s AD show swimmers using a flutter kick and possibly a crawl stroke. Arawak or [...]