Today’s chess video (history)


The LEWIS CHESSMEN has always inspired wonder and curiosity. American author Nancy Marie Brown (born,1960) recently wrote a book on the subject and gave a talk (September 9) at a popular bookstore on this very subject.

Nancy Marie Brown_credit Jennifer Anne Tucker and Gerald Lang (2)

Nancy Marie Brown is the author of highly praised books of nonfiction, including Song of the Viking. She reads Icelandic and Old Norse, and spends her summers in Iceland. Brown lives in northern Vermont.


”The bookstore welcomes Nancy Marie Brown as she reads from and discusses her new book, Ivory Vikings: The Mystery of the Most Famous Chessmen in the World and the Woman Who Made Them, a journey into the Viking world out of which came the Lewis chessmen.

In the early 1800s, on a Hebridean beach in Scotland, 92 chessmen carved from walrus ivory were found. The discovery raised many questions, including who carved them, where, and why? Norse netsuke, each face individual, each full of quirks, the Lewis chessmen are probably the most famous chess pieces in the world.

Ivory Vikings connects medieval Icelandic sagas with modern archeology, art history, forensics, and the history of board games. Brown presents a vivid history of the 400 years when the Vikings ruled the North Atlantic and the sea road connecting countries and islands: Norway and Scotland, Ireland and Iceland, and Greenland and North America. The book also spotlights an extraordinarily talented woman artist of the twelfth century: Margret the Adroit of Iceland.”

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