Just when we start to think we’ve seen it all, something comes along and makes us wonder a little. We may not be familiar with some objects or their reason for existence, but fortunately, there’s always someone who has the answers to our questions and can solve our doubts in no time.
Bright Side compiled 19 mysterious and unusual objects Reddit users shared in hopes of finding someone who could reveal what they are.
1. “This was found with some old tools. Doesn’t seem to attach to anything. It can lock in place, and the middle bit turns round, unraveling 2 straps of fabric. I’m stumped!”
© shantayyoustayyy / Reddit
Answer: It’s for carrying books.
© Missedfeatherbottom / Imgur
2. “I’ve had this around for a while, it’s very lightweight and wooden but very smooth…what is this thing?”
© HometownJess / Reddit
Answer: It is a hairpin. Similar to this.
3. “This appears to be a green plastic scissor handle with metal loops and plastic teeth. Doesn’t have identifying marks.”
© PatientFerrisWhl / Reddit
Answer: My guess would be some sort of herb stripper. Sprigs go in the loops, the teeth are closed, and stalks are then pulled out.
4. “An intricate iron contraption that opens on one side”
© beeagg*essive63 / Reddit
Answer: It’s a cast-iron buggy/whip holder.
5. “What is this keyhole in the wall next to an outer door?”
© djardastar / Reddit
Answer 1: It’s probably for the fire department. We have a keyhole just like it next to our parking lot gate. This way, they can open it in case of an emergency.
Answer 2: It’s a Knox Box.
6. “These have been in our kitchen drawer for ages, but we haven’t figured out what they’re used for. Any ideas?”
© Bobotkooo / Reddit
Answer 1: The green one opens bananas.
Answer 2: The blue one on the right is for sure an orange peeler in the form of a beaver. With the tooth on the front, you can cut lines in the outer shell of the orange, and with the beavertail, you can kind of scrape the peel off.
7. “Found this old mechanical device in a dumpster. It’s extremely heavy. Is it a cash register? A mechanical calculator?”
© ldorigo / Reddit
Answer: It is indeed a mechanical calculator, an Odhner 1950/60’s model.
8. “A solid metal Egyptian-looking scarab — my grandma believes she got it somewhere in Europe a long time ago. It has hieroglyphs on the underside and is fairly heavy for its size.”
© kikofrn / Reddit, © kikofrn / Reddit
Answer: I have one of these from Egypt. Definitely a paperweight tourist trinket.
9. “What is this thing: some beach sand in Ecuador is magnetic.”
© Queen_is_a_Lizard / Reddit
Answer: It’s probably a bunch of iron. Look here.
10. “I found this in the garage — a tube with notches made of brass and the rest of the cover on top. It’s a copper rod with a wooden handle.”
© Bigovereasy / Reddit
Answer: It’s a hair curler. Check this link. I know hot combs and iron curlers exist but those are different products. These are akin to rollers you leave in overnight, like a cartoon image of an old 1950s lady with a nightgown and overnight rollers in her hair.
11. “A strange object from Tiffany’s was mysteriously given to my wife by her grandmother while refusing to say what it was. It was probably bought in the 1930s or 1940s. It’s about 4 in (10 cm) long. All she’d say was that ’she used it as a young woman but didn’t have much use for it nowadays.’ Any ideas?”
© zsaleeba / Reddit
Answer: It’s for stirring drinks.
12. “Found a bunch of 3-armed poles near the bike stands. The arms rotate, and it’s outside a tower block in London.”
© d*vilsrfun / Reddit
Answer: It’s an art installation for The Dumont Apartments at the Albert Embankment.
13. “What is this hook thing in the kitchen cabinet?”
© pgm123 / Reddit
Answer: It’s a mug rack.
14. “This solid metal ’kiss’ was in our bag of candy kisses. Is it part of the machinery?”
© SometimesLauren / Reddit
Answer: Definitely not a part of the machine. Since it’s the same size and shape, I would say it’s a QA “gauge” to help operators verify the shape and portion size at a glance.
15. “This device in a nursing home that appears to be something halfway between a sink and a toilet”
© tornadoallie3 / Reddit
Answer: It’s a clinical sink, it’s for dumping out bedpans.
16. “It’s some sort of promotional item. What is it used for?”
© oberluz / Reddit
Answer 1: I’m not sure of the scale, but it looks like an acupressure ring that’s meant to help improve circulation in your fingers.
Answer 2: Yes, according to my Korean wife, it’s a hand massage/strengthening kit.
17. “Someone was gifted this for a new baby with no note about what it is.”
© padmoosen / Reddit
Answer: It’s a door silencer. It wraps around and covers the latch on a door so that it doesn’t latch, and the rubber also makes the door open and close silently. The straps go around the doorknob on each side.
18. “This thing is above my hospital bed, and none of the nurses know what it’s for.”
© UnusualSoup / Reddit
Answer: It’s a battery-powered emergency light. The red light shows it has power and the battery is charging. When the power fails, that light comes on automatically to light your escape.
19. “I found these in my grandmother’s house (Germany), they are made of thin glass. Unfortunately, there is no box cover explaining what they are…”
© Winterzeit20 / Reddit
Answer: They are for flower decoration. One singular flower goes in the tube. There’s probably a stand for them somewhere around, but some people like to stick them in foam together with other decorations or in pieces of driftwood with holes drilled into them — or even into other flowerpots.
Have you ever found strange things that you didn’t know the purpose of? If so, share a photo with us — maybe we can help you find out what it is.