Maths Museum Museum
    Shut the Box Maths Museum
Shut the Box
© Islington Artefact Library
Click Here for Interactive Exhibit Shut the Box is a traditional dice game that can be played by any number of players. Some people even play the game solo as a pastime akin to patience. Traditionally played in English pubs, Shut the Box is a gambling pastime with each of the players paying an agreed amount into the 'pool' at the beginning and the winner collecting the pool at the end of each round.

There are nine 'boxes' numbered 1 to 9 and all the boxes start open. The aim of the game is to close all of the boxes exactly, then you win. For each of your turns, you throw a pair of (ordinary 6-sided) dice and look at the total you have thrown. For example, if you have thrown a '3' and a '5' then your total score is '8'. You must then close a collection of the open boxes whose numbers add up to your total score. If you cannot use up your roll by closing open boxes then you lose.

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