Largest piece (King) H. 2 in. 5.5 cm
Diam. 2 1/8 in. (4.4 cm)
Small piece (pawn) H. 3.3 cm.
Diam. 2.9 cm
Pfeiffer Fund, 1971
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 453
This nearly complete chess set is one of the earliest extant examples in the world. The pieces are abstract forms: the shah (king) is represented as a throne; the vizier (the equivalent of the queen) is a smaller throne; the elephant (bishop) has two tusklike protrusions; the horse (knight) has a triangular knob representing its head; the chariot (rook) is rectangular with a wedge at the top; and the pawns are faceted hemispheres with knobs.
[ Saeed Motamed, Frankfurt, until 1971; sold to MMA]
Swietochowski, Marie, and Marilyn Jenkins-Madina. Notable Acquisitions 1965-1975 (1965-1975). p. 145, ill. (b/w).
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The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Daniel S. Walker, Arturo Ponce Guadián, Sussan Babaie, Stefano Carboni, Aimee Froom, Marie Lukens Swietochowski, Tomoko Masuya, Annie Christine Daskalakis-Matthews, Abdallah Kahil, and Rochelle Kessler. "Colegio de San Ildefonso, Septiembre de 1994-Enero de 1995." In Arte Islámico del Museo Metropolitano de Arte de Nueva York. Mexico City: Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes, 1994. no. 46, pp. 136-137, ill. p. 137 (b/w).
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Ekhtiar, Maryam, Sheila R. Canby, Navina Haidar, and Priscilla P. Soucek, ed. Masterpieces from the Department of Islamic Art in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1st ed. ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2011. no. 70, pp. 112-113, ill. p. 112 (color).