Vindobona Veteris (Old Vienna); 32 weighted wooden chess pieces without board, wood, rare, light brown vs. dark brown, Austrian ‘kaffeehaus’ Set, circa 1930-1940
Height: King 8cm, weight 11g, base diameter 2.7cm; Queen 7.2cm, Bishop 6.2cm, Knight 5.5cm, Rook 4.5cm, Pawn 4.5cm. W: black felt pads, B: same
A seldom seen example of the early Viennese Coffee House sets that dominated the gaming rooms of Austria, Germany and Northern Italy from the late 1800s on. For me, the robust, oversized rooks steal the show In this set and have been given a little extra weight which makes them feel all the more substantial in the endgame. The Bishops carry the traditional opposing coloured domes, while the Knights (carved from one blank) are reminiscent of some sets that were manufactured in southern Germany during the years leading up to WWII.
These old warriors carry a few ‘battle scars’ that I chose to leave be. They are almost a century old and (to my eye at least) the ‘battle-scars’ add an edge to their character and overall appearance – the tattoos of war, if you like.
The pieces are UV resistant and ideal for display as well as casual/blitz play.
Both kings carry the hand-painted iridescent silver ‘power’ signature of the artist on their bases.
Ref code: VV20