Antique and Vintage Backgammon Sets

The roots of backgammon date to 3000 BCE, when well-born Mesopotamians would play the Royal Game of Ur. The earliest version of the game was discovered in 2004 in what is now Iran. That archaeological find featured an ebony board (in those days, this type of wood was imported from India), pieces fashioned from local agate and turquoise, and a pair of dice made from human bones.

Ancient Egyptians also played a variation of the game, as did the Romans (Emperors Claudius and Nero used it to gamble) and 6th-century Indians. By the Middle Ages, variations of backgammon were common throughout Europe, and by the Renaissance the game was being depicted in paintings, perhaps most famously in Hieronymus Bosch’s “The Garden of Earthly Delights.” By 1743, backgammon was so widespread that Hoyle had published his first book of rules for it.

The oldest intact and usable sets tend to come from the Victorian Era. The boards are often made of wood and designed so that they could be folded up into a box—the pieces and dice were secured in compartments inside. Sets from Asia are often found in jade and bone. Other backgammon sets may feature ivory or Bakelite pieces and dice, which are paired with hardwood boxes and boards. Sets made after the 1920s also often include a doubling cube.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Museum of Talking Boards

Museum of Talking Boards

Prepare to enter the strange world of Ouija, the Wonderful Talking Board game, which captured imaginations en masse… [read review or visit site]

Elliot Avedon Games Museum

Elliot Avedon Games Museum

This in-depth University of Waterloo virtual exhibit showcases vintage games in a variety of categories, from class… [read review or visit site]

Electronic Plastic

Electronic Plastic

From Tomy to Coleco to Mattel and Nintendo, check out this collection of over 660 handheld and tabletop videogames … [read review or visit site]

Pong Story

Pong Story

David Winter's tribute to early video games, and to Ralph H. Baer, 'inventor of the video game.' Offers a detailed … [read review or visit site]



Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Vintage Backgammon Hand Tooled Chestnut Leather & Oak Game Board Table Top YqzSinclair Zx Spectrum Rom Cartridge - Backgammon By Psion1760 Edmond Hoyle - Rules For Chess, Backgammon, Whist, Picquet - SignedVtg 1"1/2 Size Bakelite Backgammon Set Gold Chocolate Case Dice Cube FsVintage Crisloid Bakelite Backgammon Green And Butterscotch Chips 1 3/4" W/diceGorman Backgammon Black Velvet Burnout Midi Skirt 8Vintage Backgammon Game Set With Leather Travel Case Excellent Condition 2 Antique Victorian Hand Turned Boxwood Treen Dice Shakers - Backgammon C 1880Vintage Cardinal Backgammon Game W/ Bakelite Chips And Dice / DieVintage Crisloid Backgammon Set Full Size Bakelite Swirl Pieces Corkboard1940's Bake Lite Backgammon Set. Nice!Bakelite Backgammon Tournament Set Honey Gold & Chocolate Wood Dice ShakersRare Ooak Wood Backgammon Board Native American Indian Design Folk Art KachinaHuge Crisloid ...bakelite Backgammon Vintage Backgammon Game Board & Carrying Case-inlaid Wood-high EnamelBackgammon Board With All PiecesVintage Green Butterscotch Bakelite Crisloid Backgammon Set Green Hard CaseCollection Of 26 Bakelite Backgammon Game Pieces, End Of Day / Apple Juice Vintage Crisloid Bakelite Checkers 30 Pieces Swirl, Yellow & Black2 Different Shades Of Marbled Brown Bakelite 1" X 1" Backgammon Doubling CubesVintage Fred Roberts Sf Backgammon Set Wth Original Game BookClassic Wood Backgammon Set, Large, No DiceVintage Catalin Bakelite 30 Pc. Backgammon / Checkers Set, Red And Bone Color!Pavilion Tournament Backgammon Game Wood Briefcase Style Complete W InstructionsTurkish Backgammon Tawula Hinged/folding NewVintage Large Backgammon - Large Case, Rattan Weave OuterPortable Brown And White Backgammon Suitcase Table Game KitFao Schwarz Classic Backgammon Game (new, But Missing Original Packaging)Viintage Backgammon Bake Lite Pieces, Cork Board, Red/ White Pieces Backgammon Large Set 100% Complete Large 15" Blue & Burgundy EucUs Portable 3 In 1 Travel Magnetic Chess Checkers Backgammon Handy Game Set 3 In 1 Glass Chess, Checker, Backgammon Board GameNintendo Ds 50 Classic Games Chess Texas Hold'em Sudoku Backgammon Puzzle VideoEddie Bauer BackgammonMicro-games Backgammon 2 Electronic Computer Game New In Original Pkg Never UsedBack Gammon Set, Travel CaseBackgammon Doubling Cube - 22mm - Pearl White W/gold! Pretty & Heavenly Pearly!