Where To Buy Economy Staunton Chess Sets

Named after Howard Staunton, who was possibly the first ever world champion of chess, Staunton chess sets were designed by Nathaniel Cook and have been the most preferred type of chess sets thanks to the clearly recognizable nature of chess pieces. During the early 19th century, when chess enthusiasts from different corners of the world played in tournaments, they had a hard time identifying different chess pieces due to the difference in backgrounds. Therefore, a chess set which was user friendly and easily identifiable was needed. At this time, Nathaniel Cook, who was apparently inspired by the Neoclassical style of architecture, created chess pieces which were based on the elements of Victorian society.

The uniqueness of Staunton chess sets can be observed in the etching of the queen’s coronet and the knight which looks like the head of a horse. The pawns were designed based on the ‘Squares and Compasses’ of Freemasons. The complete chess board has a classical appeal and can look decorative in a classical Victorian style mansion. However, with passage of time and new developments in the game, this design too had to be revised several times. With the advent of Descriptive Chess notation which was used to record chess games, the pieces were now referred to as the queen’s castle, the king’s knight etc. Based on this description, designers began to imprint a crown on the castles and the knights so that their positioning was clearly understood.

When the fame of Staunton chess sets began to enter the next layers of the society, economy Staunton chess sets were designed in order to encourage everyone to play the game. In economy Staunton chess sets, the design remains almost same but the raw material used to design the chess set differed and so did the dimensions of the board. Traditionally, these chess boards were created using ebony, boxwood or rose wood. A few were even created using ivory. These chess sets were filled with lead in order to improve the balance and felt was used at base of each chess piece creating an illusion that the pieces were floating midair. At present, chess pieces made of glass and plastic too are available.

Economy Staunton chess sets do not necessarily mean cheap alternatives. Instead, there are economy Staunton chess sets which follow a minimalist design with articulate and unbending lines in place of the traditional curves and arches of the Victorian design. Additionally, there are magnetic chess sets that can be easily carried, portable and easy on the pocket. These chess sets can be used to play the game while traveling in a car or a train without any interruptions.

Economy Staunton chess sets are also available in thematic variations like the ones with Russian, Polish and American classic pieces, concave pieces and handmade chess pieces. Unaffected by the invention of other types such as the English, Washington, Selenus, St. George, Barleycorn and Regency chess sets, Staunton chess sets have retained their popularity through the centuries and continue to enjoy the first preference of chess clubs and players.

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