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Military Campaign Games Compendium

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Something to pass the leisure hours, often noted in soldiers woolworks to be whilst in India, a brass bound mahogany games compendium. The box itself can serve as a lectern, the rake of the lid determined by a prop that can engage with one of three settings, and a ledge to hold a book is stowed beneath the chess pieces.

The first function within the box is that of a lap desk with a fold-out baize-lined writing surface, a pen tray and a pair of inkwells. There are two packs of cards and four turned bone scoring pegs. The reverse of the writing surface is inlaid with a sycamore checkerboard for chess or draughts with scoring strips along two sides. Beneath this is a lift-out tray with a Jacques Staunton pattern chess set. The lid is inlaid with a backgammon board and there is a removable box containing turned wooden pieces for the playing of backgammon or draughts.

English circa 1860.

15.75 in x 10.75 in x 5.25 in 

The design of the chess set within this compendium was registered at the patent Office in 1849 by Nathaniel Cooke, editor of the Illustrated London News and regular contributor of chess articles. First made by the London firm of Jacques, as is the case here, the new pattern was heavily endorsed by Howard Staunton, considered at the time as the best player in the world, the design henceforth recognised as ‘Staunton’. The distinct knight was inspired by a stallion’s head encountered on the Elgin marbles, originally from the Parthenon. The King’s height in the present set is 3 3/8 in x base dia:1 11/16 in


Item Code: 4524

£ 2950

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