Lot #74. Small Mahjong Set in Ebony Slide-top Box


In stock



Vintage Small Boxed Mahjong Set.

Offered here is a very rare, example of a Small boxed Mahjong Set. The 144 tiles are Bone and Bamboo adorned with Chinese-themed art and calligraphy. The slide-top box is solid Ebony and adorned with two silver outlined Chinese characters. The box houses the tiles, which are 25% bone and 75% Bamboo. The tiles are in excellent condition. also included are bone and Ebony counters. There are 24 with one spot, 18 with two spots, 12 with 5 spots, 12 with ten spots, and 19 ebony sticks marked “100” in gold. The Ebony box is in very good condition, but the slide-top is a very tight fit. Circa 1920.


Mahjong, also spelled majiang, mah jongg, and numerous other variants, is a game that originated in China. It is commonly played by 4 players (with some 3-player variations found in South Korea and Japan). The game and its regional variants are widely played throughout Eastern and South Eastern Asia and have a small following in Western countries. Similar to the Western card game rummy, Mahjong is a game of skill, strategy, and calculation and involves a degree of chance.

The game is played with a set of 144 tiles based on Chinese characters and symbols, although some regional variations use a different number of tiles. In most variations, each player begins by receiving 13 tiles. In turn players draw and discard tiles until they complete a legal hand using the 14th drawn tile to form 4 groups (melds) and a pair (head). There are fairly standard rules about how a piece is drawn, how a piece is stolen from another player and thus melded, the use of simples (numbered tiles) and honors (winds and dragons), the kinds of melds, and the order of dealing and play. However, there are many regional variations in the rules; in addition, the scoring system and the minimum hand necessary to win varies significantly based on the local rules being used.

For an excellent treatise on the History of Mahjong and an amazing collection, visit this outstanding site by Allen and Lila Weitz. The information is extremely well researched and presented.

Additional information

Weight10 lbs
Dimensions12 × 12 × 10 in