29th June 2001 at 01:00
INVESTIGATING THE LEWIS CHESS PIECES. National Museums of Scotland pound;19.99. Tel: 0131 247 4437

Chess aficionados will be in heaven with this fascinating resource, but humble historians will find it pretty interesting as well. Chess was popular in Celtic society, and is often mentioned in Celtic myth and legend. It is particularly associated with the warrior aristocrats of the early medieval period. This CD explains how their chess pieces tell us about their society. It does so through a logical and easily navigable structure.

We learn how the pieces were found on Lewis and how experts authenticated them. Most interesting is the analysis of the craftsmanship and the insights into the values and beliefs of the period.

Ben Walsh is chair of the secondary committee of the Historical Association

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