The oldest known die were excavated in Iran as part of a backgammon set dating back to circa 3,000 B.C.E. The first recorded games originally utilized the talus, the multi-faceted anklebone of animals, as a central game piece. The natural angles of the bone allowed for various chance decisions to be made. Our dice are created from the bone of Ankole cattle and shaped with a machine to achieve uniform dimensions, so everyone gets a fair shot. The numerical pips, or dots, are engraved into the bone.
Over time and with increased use, oils from hands and fingers will naturally darken the dice to achieve a honeyed patina. Avoid prolonged exposure to sunlight or extreme conditions to prevent cracking or yellowing. Clean the bone dice with cool water and a mild soap, if desired. Rub gently with a soft cloth to dry.
The company that produced this dice cup was established in 1749 as purveyors of horn goods, such as buttons and combs. Over the centuries, the company changed hands before eventually being passed down to close associates, longtime employees and apprentices. The specific bone used for these handmade die is from Ankole cattle, native to Africa. Images of Ankole cows, with their distinctively long, expansive horns, have been found in ancient Egyptian cave paintings.
Made with natural cattle bone sourced from free roaming Nigerian Ankole cattle. Cut, polished and engraved in England since 1749. Comes as a set of two. Shake them up in our Handmade Horn Dice Cup.
0.4 x 0.4 inches (1 x 1 cm)
Natural cow bone
Kaufmann Mercantile is committed to help you live a conscious and inspired life.
Many of the items you discover here are exclusive to Kaufmann Mercantile, which is what makes our community of designers and artisans so special.
If you find one of our products anywhere else for less than it's being sold on our site, we will match it. No questions asked.
Our dedicated Concierge Team is here to help. Reach out any time at: