Inuit Yoke Puzzle

Bone and Hide Yoke Puzzle

Purchased from an Inuit cooperative in the Arctic in 1979, this puzzle is not a game traditionally played by the Inuit. It is an object made for sale purposes in other parts of the world.

The carved bone backing is a flattened piece of antler horn 4cm long x 10.5cm wide. Three holes have been drilled into the bone, and a knotted leather thong 1cm wide has been looped through these holes. A round piece of antler horn has been threaded through the loops. The intent of the game is to move both round pieces of antler to the same loop without undoing the knotted thong.

Found in many cultures, this manipulative puzzle has many names and variations. To see other versions of this puzzle in the Museum's Collection, and read how to solve the puzzle click on "Yoke Puzzles" in the left panel menu.

Last update June 20, 2010