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Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Marbles Games

Ceramic marbles began mass production in the 1870, but it wasn’t until the 1890’s that machinery to manufacture glass marbles was introduced. From then on they have been used for a variety of children's games, and are collected by many people, both for nostalgia and for their interesting mix of colours!
There are many small glassmakers who make marbles by hand. A popular glassmaker in the South West is the House of Marbles, who offers a modern range of marbles, sought after by many collectors.
The manufacturing process is actually quite complex. Firstly, glass is melted in a furnace and poured out. The chosen coloured glasses are then injected into the flowing glass if inserts are needed in the marble. Shears are cut into small cylinders as the glass descends. These are then placed into moving, mechanical rollers were the final shape and size is created and the marbles are left to cool.
Here are some of the best known marble games:
Bounce about
A game for two to four players, which works best with Medium sized marbles. Player 1 throws bouncer ( marble) forward about 1.5 metres. Player 2 then throws their bouncer, trying to hit Player 1’s. Player 3 throws to try and hit either marble on the ground and so on. If a bouncer is hit then the player needs to give the successful thrower one marble.
Hundreds
For two players. Start by drawing a small circle or making a small hole a suitable distance from the shooting spot. Both players then shoot a marble towards the circle, until one player’s marble stops within the circle. That player then scores 10 points and continues throwing until they score 100 points or misses. If he misses the turn is then passes to the opponent who shoots and scores until they miss. The first player to score 100 points is the winner and the loser gives them a predetermined number of marbles.
Eggs in the Bush
A player picks up a random amount of marbles with one hand and asks the other players to guess the amount. The players who guess the right amount are rewarded that number of marbles by the questioner. However, the players who guess incorrectly have to give the questioner the difference between the numbers actually held. An entertaining guessing game!
Marbles can also be used for decorative purposes – they are great for flower arrangements, candle sticks, fish tanks and pot plants!
View our range of marbles here and put some of the games into practice!

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