chess board, wooden chess set

The Origin & History of Chess Board and Chess Set

Most historians are of the opinion that chess is the oldest game that exists for long to test the skills of individuals. There are records written that show that the game was played even in the 6th century. The oldest chess board and set were Persian-made pieces as it was played in the Persian Empire. They called the game as Chaturanga. But, the unfortunate thing is that no known pieces of the Persian sets presently exist. It is believed that they will be found some day during archeological exploration.

How was the chess board made in Persian Empire?

The Persian Empire was a wealthy empire. The traders from this empire reached different corners of the world to make a trade and to earn. During one of their trips, they were believed to have brought chess with them. Then, the game started to spread all through the empire. It is believed that the earlier pieces of chess and the chess board were made out of varied materials all through the Persian Empire. Owners created their own boards on the basis of the means they had with them.

Ivory was used to make it!

There were very cheap boards and sets made from bones in the early days of the game. Wealthy people started carving the most extravagant pieces from hardwoods like rosewood and ebony. Ivory was used for carving the finest early chess sets, which was favored by craftsmen for the ease of craving. Also, they used ivory because they were able to polish the pieces to fine shine then and there. Examples of ivory chess pieces and the board can still be found in museums.

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How about the pieces?

Some of the chess pieces for the modern day chess game were discovered in Uzbekistan. Reports state that 7 pieces were discovered in this country. The pieces include the King, a Chariot, a vizier, a horse, an elephant, and a couple of pawns.

Next-oldest chess set:

The next oldest chess set was found in India. Around 900 AD, Indians prepared chess pieces out of radiocarbon. These pieces just looked similar to the oldest types from the Persian Empire’s version of chess.

European chess sets:

A more modern, European-based chess sets that many of us are familiar with today dates 1021 AD. They were initially made out of rock crystal, but this material could not survive long. Only a few pieces are in good condition in museums these days. It is believed that this set was originally carved for Charlemagne.


In short, chess is a game with very old history. Every time this game was used as the excellent source to improve thinking ability in individuals. This game is known to bring not just physical benefits like the sharpness of eyes, but it is also known to bring many mental and emotional health benefits. More importantly, it will increase the concentration to a great extent. This is why most parents these days wish to teach this game to their kids. They should choose the latest and the best chess board for the same.