Chess - Chess History - How to Play - Xiangqi - Shogi - Shatranj
To recreate these ancient chessmen, we want to pull the pieces out of the shadows of van Leyden's painting. Carefully comparing images, using knowledge of the game, we make them anew in full 3-dimensional form.
The game in the foreground turns out to be no mere prop, but an instructive presentation of the game itself. Studying the picture carefully, we see that each piece is deliberately represented, some more than once, and some at various angles.
After analyzing the position and the identities of the pieces, and comparing the various renditions of each piece, we have selected a representative of each one, imagined it as a whole piece, defined what its form and measurements must have been – and finally reconstructed it as faithfully as possible.
The result is a chess set so true to the painting that one can imagine the painting was made from these very pieces. One can step right into the painting and play the game.The pieces in the painting:
sketches defining the forms:
The pieces recreated:
Courier Chess Reproduction
complete set of 48 pieces stand between ¾ inch
and 2 ¼ inches tall (1.8 ~ 6 cm), the same size of those
depicted in van Leyden’s painting.
the first production of in 2008, additional versions of the
chessmen and board have been created. See the link below for
currently available sets.
productions are being developed. Check our listings
for fine brass sets and hand made boards.
Print of Lucas van Leyden's Painting
size: The image is reproduced in the same size as
the original painting: