History of the evolution of the marble!

Marbles have been around for centuries and have been played with by many.  One must understand the rich history of marbles and how they formed into the collectible today.  The time line below will consist of  the years B.C to the present.


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  4000 B.C.    

During this time there were clay marbles that were in the tombs of the legendary pharaohs of Egypt.                          

  3000 B.C.   

During this time in history there were marble objects of various shapes that were in the tombs in the area of Eastern Ireland.                                                   

  2000 B.C.   

In the area of Crete there was the making of clay marbles which were in the colors of Red and Brown.                       

    420 B.C.    

In Greece at this time period in history there was a vase of a Greek goddess that was showing her playing with what was knucklebones (the bone of the finger which forms the knuckle).                                                                    

    100 B.C.    

In the Southwestern part of the United States and the part of Mexico there were clay marbles in the pueblo dwellings (a place which one lives) during this time in history.                                             

       10 A.D.   

During this time in history; in Rome the Castles or the Pyramid were playing marbles in which nuts were used.                       

     200 A.D.   

The area which is Ohio there was placed spheres of  soapstone that was put in Indian mounds.                      

     300 A.D.   

During this time in History Rome was of much military power and had the resources to conquer parts of the world.  They took a game they played with polished nuts or knucklebones and evolved the game in places they conquered.                        

    900 A.D.   

In Venice, Italy (a place that has some of the most beautiful art work ever made) glass marbles were made there.                  



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The Middle Ages were an important time in History and during this time marbles were played with.                    


During this time in History a game called trou madame consisted of small marbles that were rolled into holes at one end of a board.  The arrival of this game in England perspired the name trunks or trollmadame.                    


In Pieter Brueghel most adored painting Kinderspiele many children are shown playing marble games.                    


In Germany during this time water powered grinding mills are used for the mined marble and alabaster marbles.  Also the great Shakespeare wrote of a game called cherry pit this was polished stones that were put into holes into the ground.              


One of the great authors of this century Daniel Defoe who was the author of Robinson Crusoe, wrote of a marble player that shoots a marble and he never hardly missed.              


In Germany in this time there were China factories that was making the now famous china marbles in various striped patterns.   Germany was also making agate marbles most for the American market.                  


In this decade there was not only the finding of gold that was important but an Ohio factory was making clay marbles about 100,000 a day.                    


A German glassblower developed marble scissors which made various colors and patterns  WB01387_.gif (105 bytes)              



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During this time in Akron, Ohio the development of the first machine to make glass marbles was patented from the M. F. Christenson Company.                 


There was an increase of the production of Marbles in the United States because World War 1 restricted the export of marbles from Europe to North America.                


The development of the full mechanized marble-making.


In the United States in New Jersey the first national Ringer tournament was held.               


Not only was the United States heading into the stock market crash the next four years but in this year the development of machine feeding, so three colors for swirl marbles perspired.                


During the most admired war,  World War II servicemen played marbles for fun to get there minds off the war.  I salute all the veterans at this time!                

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The swirl marbles of the past were changing into a new marble that caught the baby boomer generation the catseye.  This was developed from the Japanese.                                

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The machine made marbles are being made in Asia and Mexico!


The craze of Mexican Marbles arouse the hobby with beautiful looking marbles that portray the unique colors that were popular from the 1930's and 1940's.   Also Marble King has reproduced some unique marbles.     

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2000 - Present    

The start of this new century has brought many marbles from different countries.  Mexico is making some really nice looking marbles, please refer to my Making Marbles Page located at http://www.kingofalltechnology.com/makingmarbles.htm Marble King in West Virginia is making standard production game marbles.