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Online Collections

Rubik's Cube

display piece | puzzle | game | sales sample

ca. 1977

In 1974, Erno Rubik, a Hungarian professor of architecture and interior design, invented the cube puzzle that bears his name. Each side of the cube consists of 9 brightly colored cubies (three rows of three). The object of the puzzle is to align all the cubies of one side to make a solid color. Wildly popular for a few years, the Rubik's Cube inspired a variety of ancillary products, including a 16-cubie per side version, a simplified cube aimed at children, a peg-board game, a globe made of 26 sections, and a number of "cubes" in the shape of pyramids, octagons, and cylinders. The publishing industry delivered a number of books and pamphlets that provided solutions to the puzzle. Millions of copies of these publications sold. In the early 1980s, these publications were followed by books entitled "You Can Kick the Cube" and "101 Uses for A Dead Cube," among others, clearly indicating that the popularity of the Rubik's Cube had run its course. This example served as a store demonstrator model, chained to sign and a clamp. Doubtless this discouraged theft of the popular puzzle during the height of its popularity.

ManufacturerIdeal Toy Corporation
Materialplastic | metal
Object ID109.12553
Credit LineGift of Doug & Randi Olin and Marc & Jill Olin in memory of Stephen Olin

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