Casein Green and Red Set

DSC_0731 shiny

This rare set was made by the Mah Jongg Company, Ltd. in England.  The tiles are a white shiny substance which did not age very well; these have all been cleaned! The colors on some of them have faded, and some color transferred to the backs of other tiles when stored. The carvings are shallow, which explains why so many have lost their color. Most tiles are painted with just one color.

DSC_0732 dots


Note the unusual design on the 7 Dot, and the use of black on the 4 and 8 Dots, although we do see black 8 Dots from time to time.

DSC_0732 craks

The pheasant standing on the rock is very like others we have seen

The other Bams are rounded, and unique in their slightly squat designs, making this Bam a hallmark of this set. The One Dot is cog-like, and the other Dots circles within circles. The Craks are the simple Wan, with the Wan looking like a runner caught mid-stride.

And for those of you who are not familiar with a wonderful collector, here is a link to Tony Watson's collection. You will see the same set there.


One thought on “Casein Green and Red Set

  1. Tony Watson

    Thanks for the info on the maker, I didn't know that! I suspected it was a German set, but as Britain was also a big Casein producer, it figures it would be used there too.
    For those who don't know, Casein (Galalith in Germany, Lactoid/Erinoid in Britain) was a by-product of cheese- or cream-making - casein was precipitated from the whey, formed into sheets and hardened in a formaldehyde bath, either before or after impressing / carving the design.
    The formalisation process could take up to 6 months (yes, really!) but it was worth it to have an excellent plastic which was resistant to almost anything - only after many years does the surface start to break down, causing crazing or a rough finish.
    Casein jewellery is very sought-after, prized in preference to most of the modern plastics; I agree, it's my favourite plastic.

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