The Philippines and origins of the name

This is not proven however and it is also possible that the yoyo could have been introduced to the Philippines from China along the busy trade routes of the time. This enables much greater stability journal bearing manufacturers in the movements of the body of the yoyo and opens up the possibility of a huge range of free spin tricks. Then in 1980 Michael Caffrey patented a yoyo with a centrifugal clutch transaxle that allowed the yoyo to spin freely when rotating at high speed at the bottom of the string but automatically return the yoyo to the user as soon as the spin speed dropped to a certain level.Yoyo: a definitiona toy which consists of a circular object that can be made to go up and down a long piece of string to which it is tied (Cambridge University Press Dictionary)

  The origins of the modern yoyo can be traced far back into history.

  The earliest surviving examples have been dated to around 500B. Although patents existed for similar toys in the US prior to his arrival, he is credited with introducing the Filipino style of yoyo with the looped slip string . It is thought that this makes the yoyo the second oldest toy in the world (the doll is at number one). Duncan who purchased the company from Flores around 1930.


  There is evidence to suggest that a type of weapon similar to the yoyo was used for hunting in the Philippines from the 16th century onwards. It is thought that this could have lead to its use as a toy by Filipino children and even the adoption of the name yoyo which means come back in the native language of the area.

  The Philippines also has another important part to play in the development of the modern yoyo; as we will see later the introduction of the yoyo name to the USA and its subsequent explosion in popularity was largely down to the actions of a clever Filipino businessman.

  Ancient Greek yoyos came in two types: the first was made from wood or metal and was likely to have been used for day to day play.

  The main advance of the Philippine yoyo design over earlier models was the introduction of the looped slip string which means looping the string around the yoyo axle rather than tying directly on to it. The earliest surviving example dates from around this period and is on display in the National Museum of Athens in Greece. A further breakthrough occurred in 1990 when Kuhn released the world s first true aluminium trans axle ball bearing design. In ancient Greek society a young man would often mark his passage into adulthood by giving up his toys as a sacrifice to the gods, so this may have been the function of these decorative ceramic yoyos. Following the collapse of the company, the Duncan brand name was bought by Flambeau Plastics who continue to manufacture a range of Duncan yoyos to this day

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