The Tippe Top consists of a slightly flattened sphere, with a metal stem. It looks slightly like a small mushroom!
If you spin the top, it starts to slide and tip over. If you spin it fast enough, it will turn completely upside down, spinning on its stem.
This strange piece of physics was discovered by the German physicist Helen Sperl in 1891.
There are very cheap versions around, made of plastic, but this designer version is made of aluminium, and comes in an elegant foam surround with a cardboard sleeve.
The top is about 35mm high, and the designer and maker of the top is - appropriately enough - German.
If you would like to know more about the physics of the Tippe Top, here is a link to a site
which summarises a diploma thesis based entirely on the Tippe Top. The site is in English, and you can even download the thesis (although that is in German).
Made in EU