Puzzle lock

Puzzle locks in ancient China
– Puzzle locks with exposed keyholes were widely used in ancient China.
– They can be very tricky to open.
– There are three main types of puzzle locks in China.
– These locks have extra obstacles.
– Some locks require indirect insertion.
– Multi-stage locks are also common in China.
– Reference: Hsiao, Kuo-Hung. On the structural analysis of open-keyhole puzzle locks in ancient China.

Puzzle locks in Europe
– In Europe, small puzzle padlocks with front plates featuring faces or masks were popular.
– These padlocks were designed to secure small bags or pouches.
– The highest concentration of these puzzle locks was found in the Danubian provinces and Aquileia.
– They were often shaped like rings.
– Roman puzzle locks in Europe date back to the 2nd century BCE.
– Reference: Slocum, Jerry. Romano-Celtic Mask Puzzle Padlocks: A Study in their Design, Technology and Security.

Puzzle box
– Puzzle boxes are related to puzzle locks.
– They are another type of mechanical puzzle.
– Puzzle boxes are designed to be opened by solving a series of puzzles or manipulating hidden mechanisms.
– They can have various levels of complexity.
– Puzzle boxes are often used for storing small items or as decorative objects.
– Reference: Atlas Obscura.

Puzzle locks in the UK
– In the 1850s, puzzle lock was synonymous with letter lock in the UK.
– Puzzle locks were commonly used as lettered combination locks.
– Puzzle locks provided a level of security for correspondence.
– They were widely used during that time period.
– Puzzle locks were an important part of the lock industry in the UK.

Additional References
– Grundhauser, Eric. The Fashion and Mystery of Ancient Roman Puzzle Locks.
– Rhoda, Andrew. The Jerry Slocum Mechanical Puzzle Collection at Indiana University.Sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puzzle_lock