Almost every kid you know has or wants a fidget spinner. This colourful gadget is the latest craze that is sweeping the globe, but actually, it has a fascinating history.
On August 1, 2017, The Verge reported that the museum curators at the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago found an error with one of their exhibits. According to them, an artefact was labelled as the spinning toy for 85 years, and it seemed like a Mesopotamian mace head. The baked clay artifact was similar to the triplet design of the ubiquitous fidget spinners, with a small hole in the center.
Following this episode, some more pictures of the artifact surfaced on Twitter, and the triangular object was dated between 2000 and 1800 BCE. A snap of the relic went viral after journalist Arielle Pardes posted on Twitter with the caption: “Proof that there are no original ideas anymore”.
It was mislabeled by the researchers who had categorized it in 1932. Kiersten Neumann, a curator and research associate at the Institute wrote an email to Live Science, “The excavators recognized that the object was unique, and they speculated it might be rotated and used in ‘astrological divination,’ suggesting the animals represented were a bull, [an] ibex and [a] lion.”
However, this object barely resembles other toys of the period. “We do have toys that survive from ancient Mesopotamia—baked clay rattles, whistles, animal figurines, and wheeled carts, to name a few,” chief curator Jean Evans told The Verge. “But the fact that this ‘spinning toy’ would be a largely singular example of such a toy also suggests to me that it would be more accurate to think of it as a mace head.”
Even though mace heads from this period are typically made of stone, and this one is made of baked clay, both curators have pointed out that it resembles the shape and design of other mace heads from that period.
The fact that researchers originally discovered the artifact near a temple bolsters this theory. During Mesopotamia’s Isin-Larsa Period, which this object is dated to, maces were considered weapons of the gods.
There is yet another assumption that is making rounds regarding the fidget spinner. A crop circle in what appears to be the shape of a fidget spinner mysteriously appeared in wheat fields of Wiltshire county, UK. It’s very close to the Alton Barnes White Horse, which is the famous figure of a horse cut out in the hill.
This new bizarre formation, with it’s four circular arms linked to one central hub, strongly resembles the fidget spinner.
Another crop circle was reported on June 27, 2017 in Delley-Portalban, Broye, Canton Fribourg, Switzerland.
Many will notice that it also resembles the Celtic triskelion symbol, which is actually pre-Celtic. While the English ones get all of the publicity, crop circles are also quite common in Switzerland and just as controversial.
However, fidget spinners are on their way out, but what kind of new craze it could be replaced in the future?