This unusual piece has been carved from Ivory and has been dated as being from the 19th Century. It is described as being Chinese Canton carved Ivory with 3 individual carved panels that are included within the board itself.
The shape of the board itself is rectangular with a triple domed end. This appears to be in one section and there does not appear to be any damage to the main part of the board. The holes for the "counters" are all intact, 60 of them on each side. Each end also has a single hole, for the person who has won the game to place their counter. There is a further additional hole right at the end of the domed edges. It is not clear what this is for.
In the centre of the board are 3 separate carved scenes that appear to have been carved by hand. The depth of these images is difficult to measure. However the board thickness is 9mm therefore it will be less than that. These images are all different, and will be described separately.
TOP CARVING. Measures 25mm wide, by 30mm in height. The carving includes 4 figures. Three of these figures are around a table. One, which appears to be of a younger child is carrying an item to the table. The other two are resting on the table, and looking at this younger person. It is not clear what this younger person is carrying. Equally, there are items on the table that appear to resemble books. However this cannot be certain. The fourth figure is in the top right of the carving. It appears that they are looking out over the whole scene, as they are placed in a balcony type construction. This building continues in the background of the carved piece. There are also a number of tree's that are included in this piece, although they appear to have flower heads rather than leaves.
CENTRE CARVING. Measures 35mm across and 30mm top to bottom. This image appears to show four adults and a child. The child is sitting on a table, with two of the adult figures around the sides of the table. It does appear that they have attempted to be a male and female. Therefore it is not clear if these figures are meant to ne the child's parents. To the right of the image, there are two other figures that appear to be talking. It is not clear of there involvement to the child and other figures. In the background is a "Pagoda" type building, with what looks like vine branches coming down behind the child. Again, depth of this image is difficult to gauge.
BOTTOM CARVING Measures 25mm across and 30mm top to bottom. This appears to have four figures that are in this scene. They are all sitting around a table type structure. There is different facial expressions and differing body postures for each. There is a similar type of tree construction to that of the first image. It almost appears that it is the next scene to that of the first carving that was described. Again, this image does have depth to the carving.
As previously mentioned, the board itself is 9mm thick. There does not appear to be any damage, or joins in this piece. However there does appear to be a slight "bow" in the ivory itself. It is not clear if this is how it was constructed, or if over time the item has "dried out", and therefore bent slightly. The counters are kept in a secure box with a sliding lid to reveal the items used to keep score. This box measures 32mm by 60mm by 12mm. There is evidence of a glue type substance around the base of this box, which it is secured to the underneath of the crib board itself. There is also a slight crack to the box, where it appears that the sliding lid has been placed the wrong way onto the box itself. This does not affect the workings of the box, and it's ability to retain the counters. There are four ivory counters that are needed to play this game. They are 45mm in length and tapered in shape. The thin end is the end that is to be placed into the board in order to mark your score. The thickest point of the counter measures 5mm. All counters are similar in size and shape.
The board itself sits on four feet. These are designed as four short legs, each with five toes. The middle toe on each leg appears to be larger than the rest. The legs themselves are approx 24mm in length. As stated before, the board itself does seem to have a slight bend in it. Therefore, there has been two small cushions placed on opposite feet. This makes the piece sit very well, and therefore there is no movement in this board when the game is being played.
Weight approx 225grms
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