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Coins with deep markings on one side near the edge


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I have this coin in my collection. Any thoughts on why it has markings on one side?

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It's not unique in that:


The markings are usually on the side opposite to the nominal side, so the coin may still be sent back into circulation after it's temporary use as "???" what? Here is more examples:



The main theory is that they were used for a game popular in Russia among commoners, explaining why these coins are found all across Russia. They even theorized it to the point of writing a couple of articles at different times, here is an example http://www.numlit.ru/pictures/magazine_33.pdf and http://www.staraya-moneta.ru/shop/55/1476/ ... but I am not entirely satisfied with this proposed answer - using coins for a gambling game called "orlyanka" (derived from Russian word "orel" meaning "eagle").

Similar markings, to a degree, can be found on other coins as well:


Obviously, these coins couldn't have been used (most probably, but anything is possible, of cause) by Russians in 18-20 century for a gambling game. They probably had some other uses as well, as might be the case .

Any ideas?

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I've read it and some other discussions. A simple gamble game of "orlyanka" sounds more probable to me. What I am interested to know, though, if anything like that is known on coins outside Russian domain, and what those coins' purpose, if "yes". May be there is another explanation. The game "orlyanka" is long forgotten, but it's known that it was wide-spread among lower class and older kids. These coins found all around over the formally civilized area of Russian empire, wide-spread. These two facts are connected artificially so far as it seams, and thus the question of the origin of these markings is still somewhat in the air...

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