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Most Interesting Find Indeed

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I just got in from the big Round Top show which takes place twice a year just off Highway 290, half way between Austin and Houston. Although rare, I didn't come across any marble finds this time.

At the end of the show this man walks in with three green and white stones carved into rough looking orbs. I bought them and put them away since I was busy doing something else at the time.

Oh, did I forget to remind you to pull up a chair?

Well, to make a long story even longer, I started looking at them again and I noticed a peculiar ring pattern etched somehow onto the surface of the many faceted-looking sides. Or were these naturally formed lines? Such as a large roundish garnet crystal.

Here are the carved orbs and there is just no tellin' how old they are or what they are carved from. They are very heavy and the large two are jade-like and you can see some weird patterns of what look like symmetrical dots, almost as if they were buried a long time in cloth.

Please tell me what you think about them. They are heavy and the difference in weight between them is only .9 (point nine) grams. One is 63.6 grams and the other is 62.7 grams.

I wonder if they might have been some kind of counterweights?

Scroll down for all pictures. Enjoy.


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I have seen this same type of pattern on very old beads/pendents out of Asia, I will see if I can find them on the bead forum and if so I will post an image. The person that posted them stated that they were buried in cloth and this is what made the pattern.

All my best .............. Danny

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Thanks everyone! These are stone, no question in my mind about that. They all seem to have natural crystal formed tables.

I am very tempted to polish one of those tables to see what might be under there. I'm guessing the white layer is oxidized/calcified/petrified or some such process on mother natures behalf. They are really out of round so it is only fair to add that the diameter of the matched pair ranges from 1.25 to 1.5 inches.


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In my mind the most compelling thing about these two matched sizes is the weight difference which is less than a gram.

Stunning accuracy for that time period, if in fact these are really ancient, which is why I am thinking they were used as counter-balances for some kind of weighing.

Do they roll well? Yes they do! Even with those wide flat areas, once you get them rolling, watch out!

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I think I may have stumbled onto a site with similar stones.

Looks like they think they were used for knapping flints.


<a href="http://www.flickriver.com/photos/wessexarchaeology/2805105311/">View on black</a>

"A selection from the 18 hammer stones found at Cliffs End. They were found with other objects which date them to the Late Bronze Age (30-50mm).
Most show signs of wear, predominately from knapping flint."

Cool, huh?

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yep, interesting.

That would mean the weight wasn't the crucial factor.

Not necessarily. Flint doesn't require such a hard stone, a simple antler horn will do better.

Might have another purpose.

You can't smash these with a hammer Galen, you'll break the hammer, trust me.

I don't know why you can't see that this is stone in my pictures. Sorry.


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The next time someone asks me how far marbles go back, I might have a newly composed answer for them. Neanderthal children might have had fun playing with these orbs if there were ever such a thing as playtime, that is.

"Hammerstones date to the Oldowan stone tool industry in Africa, approximately 1.9 million years ago and they were probably in use much longer than that. In fact, these tools have been used by several different species of humans. The longest period of time they were in use by an extinct human was by Homo erectus who used them for approximately 1.2 million years. Homo habilis, Homo erectus and Neanderthals have used hammerstones hundreds of thousands of years longer than modern humans have been using them. Even otters and chimpanzees use stones to break open shells and nuts."

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I did a little research when i got these 2 in a while ago,, i found the one on the left is from a game, and the other i hit a road block, i got suggestions that it was possible it an old time carpet ball, not all carpet balls were fancy looking, this brown one looks identical to a smaller version of a bennington mib, same glaze ect, but is not round enough,per say, enough to use as a playtime mib,, now i have a few solid dense mibs as well, not quite as big as these 2 that were use in the laundry system, apparenty they did the same thing as an adjitater does in the modern washers,,, theres a couple ideas that might help you on your quest,, good luck,,bj


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