Brazen Knucklebones – Oracle or Game
When the Romans Were Casting Their Luck
In ancient Rome, fortune-telling and the ability to predict one’s fate were special gifts from the gods. Aside from the prophetic skills of the Sibyls still known from the Greek age and other practitioners of ecstasy, there were visible interpreters of signs. They interpreted the flight of birds and strokes of lightning, a power they had adopted from the Etruscans. The haruspex interpreted the entrails of animals. Or dice were rolled, which had been created from animal limbs: The Knucklebone was made from the talus bone of a sheep, which to this day is called the Latin name astragalus.
- Massive cast metal, polished
- Size: approx. 25 x 15 mm
Taking Fortune Into One’s Own Hands – or Trust to Luck?
The Knucklebones offered in the shop are not, like they used to be, made from bone – these are simply replicas made from brass. And yet you can use them for everything they were in popular use for during the Roman era – be that among fortunetellers or bored legionnaires:
- The heavy brazen model makes the Knucklebones lie well in your hand
- All sides can be distinctly distinguished
- They are easy to clean and unsusceptible to damage or falling
A Classic Toy for Classic Games
The Knucklebone is a nice detail to give an impression of earlier living environments. No matter if they are used as teaching material to exemplify the Roman day-to-day life, or as a supplement to the costumes of actors, or to give some authenticity to a role playing game, the Roman knucklebone is the perfect trinket to give your presentation a special feeling and additional depth.
The Knucklebone Option
Whether as oracle tool or valuable toy: the Knucklebone is the key detail to give a soupçon of authenticity to an event. Grab the ancient dice and decide your own fortune.
Diverse variants of the Knucklebones game are presented on the websites: http://home.datacomm.ch/mkrieg/pdf/ASpiele1.pdf
by Forum Traiani ®