Royal Game of Ur
The Royal Game of Ur is one of the oldest games in the world, and we've found it's one of the most enjoyable too! In 1925 a complete set was found, dating from 2500 B.C., making this the oldest complete set of gaming equipment in the world. No rules were found with the game, but a set of rules for a slightly different game using the same board gives clues to how it was played.
Two players compete to race their pieces around a set path on the board, each player starting and finishing on his own side of the board. Pieces enter the board, move, and bear off according to the roll of three casting sticks, which act much like dice. Pieces are not safe: they can be knocked off the board by the enemy and made to start from the beginning! The first player to bear off all seven of his pieces wins the game.
Our Royal Game of Ur board is made from a piece of pine, nine inches by four (225mm by 100mm) smoothed down, finished, and polished with beeswax. The pattern is burnt into the wood using the pokerwork technique, so it should not wear. The pieces are glass pebbles, seven each of red and green. The casting sticks are small pieces of wood, painted red or green on one side. There is a small black drawstring pouch to hold the pieces, and the game comes with an A5 booklet which describes the game and its history.
This game is hand-made in a rustic style. Please do not expect machine-made precision; there may therefore be minor blemishes in the work. Not suitable for young children due to small pieces.