Fatimid chess pieces

This alabaster chess set is thought to have come from Fatimid Egypt or Syria in the 11th-12th centuries. The largest piece is 3.8cm high, carved from a single piece of alabaster with fluting. The set has three pawns, two kings (or queens), two knights and two and a half castles (the third is damaged). The sides are differentiated by lapis lazuli and coral insets in the top of the pieces. The pieces were sold by Christies for £59,750 ($86,458).


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