Abbreviations:MMP (the MacMillan Project)RRP (the Rob Roy Project) PdA (Piezas de Ajedrez, an Argentinian Youtube channel) FADA (Argentinian Ajedrez Federation) FFS (let’s get a move on) I absolutely adore working week in and week out with different chess sets from different parts of the world and consider myself very fortunate in being able to do so. Many […]

MANAS, THE KYRGYZ & THE GREAT SILK ROAD: A sojourn into the small world of folk-art chess pieces in Central Asia

[The suffix, –stan is from Old Persian, also -istan or -ustan, meaning ‘land of’ or ‘a place where there are many of.’ Kyrgyz is pronounced krrr–Giz with a rolling ‘Scottish’ r and emphasized g. Manas is not pronounced ‘manners’ but m’Naz with a lingering zzz and emphasis on the n. You’re all caught up.] To […]


Amber, otherwise known as ‘Russian Gold’ (Latin electrum, from Ancient Greek elektron speaking of a ‘beaming sun’).  Some time a while back (the weeks and months all roll into one these days) I was very kindly gifted an excellent little-known tome from the well-respected U.S. chess aficionado, Chuck Grau.  The wonderfully illustrated (and for me, […]