Ancient Egyptian Toys.

As primitive as they were, there were many different types of ancient Egyptian toys.

The ever-faithful rag-doll.

What would bedtime be for a kid without the security of a teddy bear or dolly?

They didn't have stuffed teddy bears (at least none have been discovered yet) but they did have crudely stitched dolls with a head, arms and legs. The only thing missing was a couple of button eyes - but buttons were in the future.

The dolls were stuffed with papyrus or cloth.

The basics.

Some basic toys made from materials such as wood and clay include:

* Wooden mouse - these have been found with a little string attached to move the tail up and down.

* Horse - During the Roman era in ancient Egypt these would have been popular due to the importance of horses in battle.

* Carved Cats and Lions - sometimes made with a string movable jaw.

* Clay models of cats, dogs, donkeys, mongooses, hedgehogs and pigs.

* Paddle dolls- These were simply a piece of wood shaped like a paddle with a painted face and hair made from clay beads strung on twine.

* Bone and ivory carved toys were an alternative to the popular wood and clay ones.

Ancient mechanics

With hinges and a bit of string, the ancient Egyptians were able add another, more interactive, dimension to their toys.

Spinning tops made of powdered quartz were shaped in a mould. Then it was just add string and go.

An example of a cat-shaped figure and a crocodile have been discovered by archaeologists. They worked with a pull on a piece of string which made the jaws move up and down.

Carved wooden dolls were occasionally made with hinged movable arms and or legs.

Keeping it simple

Let's face it, when we go out and buy a rattle for a baby there are many cheaper options. A discarded Fanta bottle with some pebbles in it is plenty colourful enough and creates the desired effect. Some rice in a small plastic Tupperware container

The Egyptians had exactly that for the bubs. Simple pottery bulbs with pebbles.

Ball games

No kids toy collection is complete without the humble ball. The Egyptians crafted balls out of wood and also a leather stuffed with papyrus version that was used in a game similar to hockey.

Sure they were simple, but you can guarantee that these ancient Egyptian toys kept the kiddies entertained for hours.

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