Vintage Japanese Daruma Gambling Game and Container for Koma Spinning Top


Dimensions: 6-1/2”h x 3- ”dia (including shaft and top)

In Japan, koma asobi (top spinning) gets its name from the Buddhist Holy man whose character decorates the container of this simple game, that has been enjoyed by children and adults since as early as the 10th century, and the oldest recognizable toy found on archaeological sites. It is especially popular during the New Year holidays in Japan. A spinning top is a toy that can be spun on an axis, balancing on a point. The well balanced carving produces an overall circular motion. This Daruma game container, the top and spinning shaft are stored inside and made to fit into the Daruma container perfectly. 

This particular set has the game wheel is on the inside of the container as well as the shaft to enable the top to spin. Some role-playing gamers still use tops to augment dice in generating randomized results related to one's future and have historically been used for gambling and prophecy. Japanese tops are considered some of the very best in the world. The piece is from Narago, Miyagi Province and unsigned. 

Condition: Excellent condition, with minimal effects such as scratching from use and aging. Retains original handprinted color and design with all associated parts intact. Well balanced and spins appropriately.