THE ELEMENTS OF
after the manner of dissected maps
Published 1st July 1787 by Carington Bowles St. Paul's Church Yard
C. Dilly, Poultry & Wm. Darton Gracechurch Street
This puzzle is the earliest known example of a puzzle other than a map. It is no wonder that when Wallis published his version of this puzzle in the following year, it was far more popular; it came without instructions! This 42 piece puzzle is 24" x 16.75", made on mahogany with a paper backing. The box is mahogany, 7.25" x 8.75" x 2.75" and on an inside wall there is a small table of the names, showing the solution to the puzzle.
|Darton 1787||*Wallis 1788||Darton c1839|
* from a reproduction
On Wallis's puzzle, comments like, "Mary was gloomy, ignorant & bigotted: disagreeable to her husband in her person & foolishly formal in her behaviour." probably did not hurt sales.
The last image on this puzzle is William IV, who died in 1837.
Assuming that publishers did not use images of reigning leaders, I believe
this puzzle was made not to long after 1837. The scarcity of details makes me wonder
if Darton is actually trying to make his puzzle fun, or perhaps he is just
cutting costs? This 29 piece puzzle is 16" x 12"
and has a paper backing. I can not identify the wood.
This puzzle came with a picture insert and possibly contained a booklet. The strange
juxtaposition of these two images (a little girl praying & two men fighting) probably came from non-adjacent pages
within the booklet. The puzzle & insert are imprinted at the bottom with "London Darton & Co".
This 29 piece puzzle was probably made about mid 19th century. It is 12" x 7.375" and is
mahogany with paper backing. The box is of a less expensive wood and it is 6.75" x 8.5" x 1.5".