Mordovian (aka ‘Latvian’) ‘Queen’s Gambit’ Style Soviet Analysis Chess Set with Vintage Board, c.1955
Moldovian Pattern: 32 unweighted analysis chess pieces with a folding vintage board, wood, Soviet Era, c.1950-1960 (Queen’s Gambit-style)
Height; King 7.cm, weight 6g, base width 2.7cm; Queen 6.1cm wt.6g, Bishop 5.6cm 4g, Knight 5cm 6g, Rook 4.1cm 6g, Pawns 3.7cm 3g.
W: antiqued red felt pads; B: same
Board Size: 31.5 x 31.5. Squares are 3.5cm.
The board is in vintage condition but carries a great deal of character. The inside is lined with the original red felt. The felt bases of the pieces have been matched to this felt. The board carries a barely visible stamp on the inner spine that is typical of a vintage circular stamp from Moldova.
A perfect travel companion and a great gift for a young student of the game or budding collector.
This famous Soviet design was said to be “a favourite” of the legendary ‘magician from Riga’ – Mikhail Tal – which is why the set is sometimes confusingly called the ‘Latvian’ set. I make use of the term ‘famous’ because just recently a slightly larger version of this timeless Soviet pattern was used in the hit mini-series, THE QUEEN’S GAMBIT, although this particular design appeared a few decades earlier than the 1980s version used by Beth Harmon in the nail-biting finale of episode seven.
The trademark ‘elbow’ or ‘S’ shape of the Moldovian knights have a stark simplicity about them and the equally simple ‘tear-drop dome of the bishop can only be inspired by Moscow’s Saint Basil’s Cathedral, erected during the reign of Ivan the Terrible in the 16th century “…its towering domes shaped like the flames of a bonfire rising into the sky” (A. Ivanov, The Tsars p.100). The queen’s trademark finial or ‘bonnet’ is also unique to this medium-sized, lightweight pattern.
All of our chess pieces are UV resistant and ideal for display as well as casual/blitz play and both kings carry the hand-painted iridescent bronze 2021 ‘Power’ signature of the artist on their bases.
The ‘Queen’s Gambit-style’ set also comes with our unique ‘Certificate of Artistry’ which will be posted separately once we tally up how many listings passed through our galleries in 2021 – “All good things …” as the wise man once said…
Ref Code: M1
Visit our Gallery for more artistically restored vintage chess sets.