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58 Holes

Period

Ancient

Region

Southwest Asia

Description

58 holes, also known as "Hounds and Jackals," was a game popular in the ancient Southwest Asia from the second and first millennia BCE. In the center of the board are two parallel lines of ten holes, which are surrounded by an arc of 40-41 holes, typically with a larger or marked square at the apex. Pieces are typically pegs to be inserted into the holes, but in some cases disks or stones or seeds. Carnarvon and Carter propose a method of play whereby there are two tracks in the game and play begins in the central lines and progresses to the goal space.

Rules

Origin

Ludeme Description

58 Holes.lud

Variants

"Axe-Blade" 58 holes
Board: Playing spaces appear as holes for receiving pegs Two parallel rows of 10 holes (sometimes 11, the topmost holes begin somewhat larger and usually thought to be starting points) surrounded by an arc of 29-30 holes. the hole at the peak of the arc is sometimes larger than the rest, and interpreted as the goal. Holes are generally counted from the topmost hole in each parallel line of holes, proceeding to the bottom and then up the arc to the "goal" space. some of the holes are sometimes marked, always symmetrically on both sides: 1, 6 (connected to 20 with a line), 8 connected to 10, 15, 25, 30.
Pieces: pegs with animal heads (hounds and jackals typically)
Rules: Assumed to be a race game, two players proceed down their individual tracks and attempt to reach the goal space.

"Violin-shaped" 58 Holes
Board: Boards with holes delineating the spaces. Two rows of ten parallel holes in the center (sometimes 11, with the topmost two being larger than the rest). Then an outer arc with 29-30 holes surrounding the two parallel tracks, but indented so that holes 4 and 20 are adjacent to one another. at the top, a "labyrinth;" a circular appendage with a central hole surrounded by 6-8 other holes. Some holes are sometimes marked, but not with connecting lines as in the "Axe-Blade" shaped 58 holes variation. Marked holes can be: 4, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 and central hole of "labyrinth."
Pieces: holes indicate pegs, but in some cases discs may have been used
Rules: Similar to "Axe-blade" 58 holes variation: two players proceed along their individual tracks to square thirty, but then presumably have to enter the "labyrinth" appendage to finish the game.

Evidence Map

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