Luke Honey | Decorative Antiques, Chess, Backgammon & Games

Rare Early English Chess Set, circa 1670

  • Rare Early English Chess Set, circa 1670
  • Rare Early English Chess Set, circa 1670
  • Rare Early English Chess Set, circa 1670
  • Rare Early English Chess Set, circa 1670

A Rare Early English Turned Ivory and Ebony “playing” chess set, circa 1670

one side stained black or very dark brown, the other side left natural, kings with double platforms and ball finials, queens similar, but of smaller size, bishops with cleft ball finials, knights with triangular “tricorn” finials, rooks as turrets with “incisive cutting” to the brickwork, pawns with balusters and ball finials

King: 7.5 cm high

Pawn 3.8cm high

Stock Reference: VW 1543

Provenance: The Gareth Williams Chess Collection

Reference: The set is illustrated in Gareth William’s book, “Masterpieces”, Quintet, 2000, pages 48 and 49: 

“Turned ivory chessmen...Late Seventeenth Century English set. The knight has a triangular finial, probably to indicate a tricorn as worn by a gentleman squire. The ebony side of the English Set....The rook with the incisive cutting of the brickwork and the knight without the horse head are indications of an early set”


Important Notice on the export of antique elephant ivory (CITES)

Please note that as the chess set contains antique elephant ivory it will require a CITES export licence to export to destinations outside the European Union. Due to recent US legislation, it is with regret that we are unable to export this item to the United States of America. Please contact me if you need further information.


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