In this Section,
15 items / 2 pages:

See also:
Escape the Plague
Let them eat cake

Games of authentic antiquity and games with a flavor of long ago,
as featured since 1984 in Kadon's booth at the
Maryland Renaissance Festival.

Larger image and rules of play

Larger image of "Labyrinth"
and rules of play

....researched by Peter Aleff

These two authentic ancient games are the ancestors of all modern boardgames: "Labyrinth" from Minoan Crete, "Goose" from the Renaissance. Both are a race to the center. "Goose" is purely chance, while "Labyrinth" allows for backgammon-like strategies. The provided book of rules and historical notes by antiquities scholar Peter Aleff is fascinating reading. The two-sided, 24" octagonal framed wood gameboard is handcrafted, with brass reinforcing brackets and a brass-finish carry handle. The superb quality carries through to 16 handpainted wood pawns, lively wood dice and a velvet cover. Customers tell us this game is a great hit as wedding presents. Suitable for 2 to 8 players, all ages. And it's a major attraction at our Renaissance Festival booth in Crownsville, Maryland. $195 (plus $10 oversize shipping surcharge)

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Goose and Labyrinth are also available on a 24" canvas banner, with 24 glass stones, wood dice and book, fabric drawstring pouch, $68

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Larger image of
The Game of Solomon


We're honored to have an exclusive of this game invented by the beloved author of countless books on recreational mathematics. The handpainted, 15" square fringed game cloth (washable) serves for four games for two players, plus a variety of jumping and positional solitaires. The title game lets players invade the opponent's castle, capture as in checkers. Another game is an unusual version of "Nim". A smaller version of Chinese Checkers can be played by 2 or 3 players. And "Caravan" has camels crossing the desert, with strings attached. The 18 disks include 6 each of 3 colors. Directions are on a parchment "scroll". For 1 to 3 players, ages 8 to adult. $49

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Larger image of Quantum

QUANTUMTM created by Peter Aleff

With a fascinating historical overview of games.
A Games 100 selection, 1985.

First published in 1984, Quantum has been a Kadon exclusive since 1987. In Quantum, Peter introduced a unique random-start idea: shake the contoured board to scatter the weighted counters to land where they may. There are two different games to play: connect opposite sides of the board with your 10 pieces, or capture the 4 central cups. The pieces first fall blank side up. Reverse them as you play to reveal their true character and strengths: circles move one step at a time; stars stride along like chess queens. Peter's website gives a wealth of further information. Genuine mahogany frame holds the 10" molded playing tray. For 2 to 4 players, ages 10 to adult. $39

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Guest showcase!
NODUSTM Celtic Knot Conundrum
...created and made by Murray Heasman

From the inventor of the now sadly out-of-print Celtic knot tile game Tara comes another aesthetically wonderful, brain-teasing puzzle, Nodus. Its 25 blue tiles invite you to solve hundreds of different combinations of beautiful knot patterns of interwoven loops and create your own, as well. The booklet provides 30 challenges, small and large, to get you started. Murray has provided Nodus sets in light blue and dark blue, so you can even combine the two sets for super assemblies. Use logic and increasing skill to merge tiles in ever more complex knots. They're called "knots", though their geometry is one of infinite paths and loops. This marvel of human inventiveness will both enchant and relax you for years of fun. Recommended for ages 10 to adult. $39

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Larger image of Lewis Carroll's
Chess Wordgame

Lewis Carroll's CHESS WORDGAMETM Martin Gardner

This refreshingly different word game is based on a notation in Lewis Carroll's diaries. Martin Gardner, author of The Annotated Alice, has defined suitable rules. Move letters like chess queens to form words and score points. There's no capturing, and you can't sabotage your opponent's scoring row, though you can try to blockade the opponent's moves. The charming 22" red game cloth is printed in white to look like Alice's picnic tablecloth, with a decorative border and even a magic mushroom. Washable. A total of 110 letter tiles serve for this and several other games on the same board, plus solitaires. Enduringly entertaining for 1, 2 or more players, ages 8 to adult. $49

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How cool is this? This solution can easily transform into any tetromino (the 5 shapes made of four squares), also known as Tetris pieces. If old Archie only knew!

ARCHIMEDES' SQUARE—uniquely tricolored by Kadon
...described by Archimedes (circa 260 B.C.); see the video

This 14-tile dissection is the oldest documented puzzle in the world, and the decipherment of Archimedes' rediscovered manuscript is a hot topic among historical scholars and mathematicians. Also known as the Stomachion, it even made the front page of the New York Times, December 14, 2003. Luminous transparent colors in a sculpted 7" acrylic tray. Long unanswered:  Just how many ways can this square be solved? On October 31, 2003, Bill Cutler's program found the full answer of 536 distinct solutions. (Read the full story.) How many other convex shapes can the 14 tiles make? Bernd Rennhak in Germany found all 637 solutions. He also found that the set can solve 13 of the 14 tetratan shapes. The permutations are staggering. An amazing fact is that each tile's area is a whole number, based on the square as a 12x12 matrix. That gives each of the 3 colors we added an equal share of the total area. Here truly is ancient genius made visible. Some of the tiles have sharp points, so we recommend ages careful 10 to adult.$42

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TRICOLOR STOMACHION MONOGRAPH, documenting the exhaustive study and analysis of all 1072 solutions by category, complete with illustrated Catalog of solutions and a Concordance for cross-reference. Read the amazing story of how three avid researchers pushed the frontier forward on this 2200-year-old puzzle first studied by Archimedes. Co-authored by Joe Marasco, Kate Jones and Alex Streif, you can now order your very own copy on luxurious parchment-like paper, with color illustrations.     $10.72
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When purchased together with the Archimedes' Square ($42), the Monograph is only $5.00, total    $47.00
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