The spinning top is one of the world’s oldest toys. Spinning tops were made from various natural materials, mainly clay or wood. Clay tops were discovered in archaeological digs that date as far back as 3500 B.C. and Egyptian, Greek and Roman tops have been found dating from 2000 B.C. to 27 B.C. Spinning tops have been used throughout history for many purposes. Children have used them for centuries as toys and pastimes; they have also been used in gambling and as gifts to honor the Gods.
These antique wooden tops from Belgium were found at a flea market/brocante. They are larger than most we have found; the largest measuring 4 inches tall with a diameter of 3 inches. The metal tip on the end kept them spinning and spinning. To start the spin, wind a thin string around the grooves tightly; quickly toss out the top as fast as you can and let the string unwind, creating the spinning. When not in use, antique tops are charming displayed in a bowl or basket on a table. Or set them up in a line like soldiers on a shelf. The rarest wooden tops will still have some original paint (like those in the pictures) and metal tip. Start your own collection by searching on ebay or etsy! And don't forget to look for them at your local flea markets/antqiue shops and shows!