Turkish Archaeologists Find 5,000 Year-Old Board Game - But No One Knows The Rules (PICTURES)

An incredibly well-preserved 5000-year-old board game has been discovered in Turkey.

But nobody knows the rules.

Discovery News reports that the 49-piece game was discovered in southeast Turkey by Haluk Sağlamtimur, a researcher with Ege University

Some of the pieces depict dogs and pigs. Others are pyramids, are round or are shaped like bullets.

The cache of pieces also included dice and circular tokens painted black, blue, white, red and green.

They find was made at a 820- by 492-foot site named Başur Höyük, which is thought to be a bronze-age burial plot.

Discovery reports that the strategy and rules for the game is unknown - but there may be clues. Similar pieces have been found before in Syria and Iraq, and their make-up suggests the number four might be crucial in how the game was played. The tokens were also found with some badly preserved sticks and wooden pieces, indicating another possible direction for future research into the game.

"Our gaming pieces were found all together in the same cluster. It's a unique finding, a rather complete set of a chess like game. We are puzzling over its strategy," Sağlamtimur told Discovery.

Board games from ancient Mesopotamia have been discovered before. Previous finds, including that of a carved game board by British archaeologist Leonard Wooley, have been made at the ancient city of Ur, though none are thought to be as intricate or well-preserved.

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