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Steph

Whaddaya Know About ... Industrial Uses For Marbles?

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I was asked several times, what the meaning is of this combi, a thimble with a marble in it, found several times, at several places, in Holland, most of them found by digging. You can't remove the marble without damaging the thimble and this while some people think that the marble is there, to protect the thimble? Also known in the US, or other area's?

Hope somebody knows some more?

Cees

post-31-0-11940500-1420023318_thumb.jpg

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The marble maybe acted as a weight? To make it easier to keep track of a lightweight thimble?

I've never seen the combination myself.

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My first guess would be that the marble found its way into the thimble by accident.

Did some googling and found someone posting about an ornate sterling silver thimble which was found with a marble inside, dug from a front yard. The poster was surprised that such a pretty thimble would be thrown away. The hypothesis of the people who responded was that a child accidentally got the marble stuck inside and decided to hide the evidence of his misdeed.

No other guess. Would be cool if someone knew a reason for that.

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Thanks both for youre reaction, Steph I also thought it might been done by a child, but others here think that there are to many found with a marble in it, there must have been a reason that the marble was inside, I don't know.

Cees.

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Just a guess here but gold and sterling thimbles are quite soft and easily bent or squashed, rendering them unusable. Maybe storing with a marble inside prevented such damage.

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A bunch of small knickknacks (marbles, thimbles, coins, etc) get tossed together in a drawer or pocket, and the hole in the thimble would be like a magnet for a marble that would fit. try to get it out, it jams in further and then you've got a practically useless thimble

Or maybe it was used to contain something, marble being like a bottle stopper. See if there's any weed in it :rolleye-842:

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Just a guess here but gold and sterling thimbles are quite soft and easily bent or squashed, rendering them unusable. Maybe storing with a marble inside prevented such damage.

This is what some people here also think, the marble had to protect the thimble.

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I was asked several times, what the meaning is of this combi, a thimble with a marble in it, found several times, at several places, in Holland, most of them found by digging. You can't remove the marble without damaging the thimble and this while some people think that the marble is there, to protect the thimble? Also known in the US, or other area's?

Hope somebody knows some more?

Cees

28-10-07q.JPG

I believe it's an acorn, from a great marble oak.

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I think you said it all when you said You can not remove the marble with out damaging the thimble. It happens to be a perfect place for a marble to get stuck by a child at play. So that may be what has happened.

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I wonder if sitting the thimble on the stove might be a way to remove the stuck marble? Hey, it works for installing valve guides.

Or, maybe just throw the whole thing in the privy...could be clue to why these show up in digs ;)

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Here's a use for marbles I once read about in a newspaper. I've mentioned it before but now I have a source:

The Jeweler's Circular, Volume 77, Issue 2, p. 47, January 29, 1919

https://books.google.com/books?id=kzUcAQAAMAAJ&pg=RA7-PA47

Wounded soldiers were trained to cut diamonds. Initially they practiced on marbles.

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