Portal:Toys

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The Toys Portal


A toy is an object used in play. Toys are usually associated with children and pets, but it is not unusual for adult humans and some non-domesticated animals to play with toys. Many items are manufactured to serve as toys, but items produced for other purposes can also be used as toys. A child may pick up a household item and 'fly' it around pretending that it is an airplane, or an animal might play with a pinecone by batting at it, biting it, chasing it, and throwing it up in the air. Some toys are produced primarily as collector's items and are not intended to be played with.

The origin of toys is prehistoric; dolls representing infants, animals, and soldiers, as well as representations of tools used by adults, are readily found at archaeological sites. The origin of the word "toy" is unknown, but it is believed that it was first used in the 14th century.

Toys and play, in general, are an important part of the process of learning about the world and growing up. The young use toys and play to discover their identity, help their bodies grow strong, learn cause and effect, explore relationships, and practice skills they will need as adults. Adults use toys and play to form and strengthen social bonds, teach, remember and reinforce lessons from their youth, discover their identity, exercise their minds and bodies, explore relationships, practice skills, and decorate their living spaces.

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Selected article

The Optimus Prime vehicle used in the Transformers movies

Transformers is a 2007 American science fiction action film based on the Transformers toy line. The film, which combines computer animation with live action, is directed by Michael Bay and produced by Steven Spielberg. It stars Shia LaBeouf as Sam Witwicky, a teenager involved in a war between the heroic Autobots and the evil Decepticons, two factions of alien robots that can disguise themselves by transforming into everyday machinery. The Decepticons desire control of the AllSpark, the object that created their robotic race, with the intention of using it to build an army by giving life to the machines of Earth. Megan Fox, Josh Duhamel, Tyrese Gibson, Jon Voight, Anthony Anderson and John Turturro also star, while actors Peter Cullen and Hugo Weaving voice Optimus Prime and Megatron respectively. Transformers was a box-office success, despite mixed critical reaction. Two sequels have been released: Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen in 2009 and Transformers: Dark of the Moon in 2011.

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Lincoln Logs
Credit: Jesse Weinstein

Lincoln Logs is the name of a children's toy consisting of notched miniature logs, used to build miniature forts and buildings. They were invented by John Lloyd Wright, son of the architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Lincoln Logs were inducted into the US National Toy Hall of Fame in 1999.

Selected biography

Ernő Rubik (Hungarian pronunciation: [ˈrubik ˈɛrnøː]; born July 13, 1944) is a Hungarian inventor, architect and professor of architecture. He is best known for the invention of mechanical puzzles including Rubik's Cube (1974), Rubik's Magic, Rubik's Magic: Master Edition, Rubik's Snake and Rubik's 360.

Did you know...

Did you know?
  • ... that antique bisque dolls (pictured) are collectible, and dolls from French companies like Jumeau can be worth over US$20,000?



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