This week we are sharing a unique and (we hope) interesting post. It is a small collection of ivory puzzle balls. These amazing feats of skilled carving fascinate me!
Puzzle balls are made in China, usually of ivory, but sometimes jade, bone, or other materials are used. The ivory ones often come with a tall and elaborately carved stand.
To make the balls the sphere is first turned on a lathe and then conical holes are drilled toward the center. Layers are carved from the inside out. The more layers it has, the more intricate the piece. The largest can be over six inches in diameter and have over twenty balls inside! I just love the delicate and lacy look of the stand on this one.
Puzzle balls are very fragile and easily damaged. They are a tempting puzzle of trying to line up all the holes; but if you do try, use something soft and thin like a quill or a toothpick. This handsome guy was once a piece from a chess set. Wow! Imagine, it must have been fabulous!
This is my latest find, and it’s incredible.
Look closely! This one has eleven smaller carved balls that are free moving on the outside layer! Way cool!
It takes very little force to damage the inner shells, and dropping them is usually fatal! So, one must use delicacy and patience to solve a puzzle ball. Since I have neither, I just look at mine, lol!
Hope you enjoyed looking at them too!