Dalmatia Perdita (The Lost Dubrovnik); Serbian Model Dubrovnik 1950 Toyota, c.1985-1999

The Lost Dubrovnik (Dalmatia Perdita); 32 weighted tournament chess pieces without board, hornbeam wood, caramel v. deep brown, Jugoslavian, artistically recreated, c.1990
Height: King 9cm, weight 35g, base width 3.5cm; Queen 8.1cm wt. 30g,
Bishop 7.3cm 28g, Knight 6.5cm 29g, Rook 5.3cm 27g, Pawns 4.6cm 20g.
W: Antiqued traditional green felt pads; B: same
 
Although Serbian in origin, this elusive set came to me via a friend and collector in Romania with a note included stating that the set was brought into the country by a Serbian student (or refugee?) living in the ancient university town of Timisoara, Romania. The production of this obscure Dubrovnik pattern halted abruptly in 1999 with the bombing of the former Yugoslavia by the NATO forces, so presumably the set crossed the border around about this time.
 
On following up on the Serbian connection I discovered that these sets were sold in the 80s/90s by the Serbian GM Sinisa Drazic, who still has a few of the old “new sets” available today (a quick google will take you to his website). Sinisa christened the set the ‘Model 1950 Toyota’ after the Olympiad held in Yugoslavia during that year. It bears little resemble to the tournament set, but is quite unique in its own right. The hornbeam wood it is made of is quite plain and light in colour, so I decided to go with the name and make them look like they came from the 50s using various aging and antiquing techniques, reversing the colours of the bishop’s finials along the way (which originally followed suit). 
 
Although it is quite obviously a rudimentary design compared to the official tournament set it certainly has a charm of its own and may appeal to those of you who like something a little out of the ordinary. My first thoughts on seeing this simplified pattern was that it may possibly have been pre-1950s, and this is the feel you should get too, as this ‘lost’ Dubrovnik looks way older than it actually is!
 
The set is quite heavy and suitable for fast play or display and is accompanied by our unique Certificate of Artistry, which will be sent on separately once we tally up how many sets passed through our galleries in 2022 …”all good things” as they say.
 
The Lost Dubrovnik also comes with the 2022 copper ‘power’ signature of the artist on both of the king’s bases marking our fourth year of artistically reinventing and restoring these wonderful old warriors.
 
 
Ref code DP22