Archaelogists excavating an ancient tomb in China have found a board game in a 2,300-year-old site.

The finding includes a 14-sided die fashioned from an animal’s tooth, a tile decorated with eyes and weather patterns, and 21 pieces with numbers painted upon them.

(Picture: Chinese Cultural Relics)

It is believed to belong to a game called ‘Liubo’ or ‘Bo’, (or in English, ‘six sticks’). It hasn’t been played in around 1,500 years and the rules are no longer known.

However, depictions of people playing the game show that it is played by two people around a board, each of whom have six throwing sticks to use, which determine their turns.

The artefacts from the tomb, near Qingzhou city, were published in the journal Wenwu in 2014, which was recently translated in the English language version of the journal Chinese Cultural Relics.

The archeologists explained that the pieces had suffered damage due to prior looting, as robbers had dug 26 different tunnels into the tomb over the centuries:

Despite the huge scale of the tomb, it has been thoroughly robbed.

The coffin chamber was almost completely dug out and robbed, suffering severe damage in the process.

The archeologists also said they found a skeleton at the site, which they believed to be an unlucky looter.

Perhaps he just really fancied a game of Liubo?


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