Ancient Egypt is a source of endless wonder. The pyramids, the mummies, the tombs. But, how much do we really know about the ancient civilization's entertainment culture?
Here are some of the board games that have been around for well over 4,000 years.
Although some have disappeared from history, or have evolved into newer versions, others continue to serve as inspiration to newer ones we still play today.
Senet is one of the oldest Egyptian games out there. It's so old, King Tut had one in his tomb.
According to hieroglyphs, players would sit face to face, maneuvering the pieces on the board into an S-shaped pattern. The first to finish off at the far end is the winner.
Senet was originally a two player game but during the New Kingdom period, a game in progress would often appear painted on tomb walls as a 'one' player game, the opponent being a spirit from the afterlife.
Since it’s one of the oldest board games in the world, it’s not that hard to believe that we still haven’t totally figured out the rules.
Mehen, meaning coiled one, is a name for both a god and a board game in ancient Egypt.
The god, Mehen, which researchers learned more about from Egyptian funerary texts, was a large serpent god who served to protect the sun god Ra.
The game however, and according to drawings, is more of a mystery as no rules have ever been discovered.
What we do know about it is that it was the first to allow multiple players. Also, that it had thirty-six ‘marbles’ (six for each player) and six lions (three were lionesses).
Alquerque originated in the Middle East as the game Quirkat. The boards are carved into the stone slabs which form the roof of the great temple at Kurna, Egypt.
The game was exported to Europe when the Moors invaded Spain.
Alquerque is believed to be the ancestor of checkers.
4. SEEGA (SIGA)
The ancient game of Seega has been played for centuries throughout Egypt and other parts of the Middle East.
Much like Tic Tac Toe, players must move all the pieces to form a line. There's a bit more strategy to it than that of course, but the rounds are typically quick and fast paced.