hist-games: Early Polyhedral Dice?

frenchdice frenchdice at worldonline.fr
Sun Dec 2 14:24:57 PST 2001

I can confirm the 20-sider in the Louvre marked with roman numbers I, II, ..., XX along with roman letters.
I also know of a 12 sided zodiac die found in the cathedral in Geneva, Switzerland; see for a replica the site:

It dates back to about 400 AD.
Besides these 2 dice I have never seen ancient dice with more than 6 sides.
see also:  http://www.multimania.com/arjan/roman.htm    for my collection of ancient dice

Arjan (alias "frenchdice")   

> I was recently reading "Games Gods and Gambling A History of Probability and
> Statistical Ideas" by F. N. David. A history and it mentions a 20-sider made
> of rock crystal in the Louvre, but doesn't mention a probable date for it.
> (Probably for divination rather than gaming?) It seems to me in some book I've
> read also mention of some Roman-era polyhedral dice in the British museum.
> Does anyone have more info on these possible early higher number dice?
> Chas 

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