Missing Lewis Chessman found, could fetch $1M at auction

This image made available by Sotheby's on Monday June 3, 2019, shows a newly discovered Lewis Chessman on display at Sotheby's in London. The medieval chess piece purchased for five pounds by an antiques dealer in Scotland in 1964 has been found to be one of the famous medieval Lewis Chessmen and is expected to bring more than 600,000 pounds when auctioned by Sotheby’s on July 2. (Tristan Fewings/Sotheby's via AP)

LONDON — A chess piece purchased for a few pounds (dollars) by an antiques dealer in Scotland in 1964 has been identified as one of the 900-year-old Lewis Chessmen, among the greatest artifacts of the Viking era.

Sotheby's auction house said Monday that the chess piece is expected to bring between 600,000 pounds ($670,000) and 1 million pounds ($1.26 million) at an auction next month.

The Lewis Chessmen are intricate, expressive chess pieces in the form of Norse warriors, carved from walrus ivory in the 12th century.

A hoard of 93 pieces was discovered in 1831 on Scotland's Isle of Lewis. It is now held in both the British Museum in London and the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh — but five of the chess pieces were missing.

The 3 1/2-inch (8.8-centimeter) piece to be auctioned July 2, the equivalent of a rook, is the first of the missing chessmen to be identified. It was passed down to the family of the antiques dealer, who did not realize its significance.

Sotheby's European sculpture expert Alexander Kader said the find is "one of the most exciting and personal rediscoveries to have been made during my career."

People also read these

Fashion takes London by storm with Preen,...

Feb 19, 2017

London Fashion Week is nearing its climax with shows by Preen, Topshop, Mulberry and others taking...

Rio Carnival revelers hunt for bargains amid...

Feb 21, 2017

Rio de Janeiro's world famous Carnival starts Friday and Brazil's deep recession and worries about...

Reserve keeper resigns after eating meat pie at...

Feb 21, 2017

A backup goalkeeper paid the price for eating a meat pie during his team's landmark game against...

Duchess of Cambridge pool-playing skills deemed...

Feb 22, 2017

The Duchess of Cambridge has shown off her pool-playing skills _ though one teenager was not...

Float crashes, injuring 20 people at Rio's...

Feb 27, 2017

A float crashes during Rio de Janeiro's world famous Carnival parade and injures eight people,...

About Us

Kayak Away aims to bring the latest news, techniques, destinations, and stories that inspire you to get on the water. We are all here together to share all the awesome tips and tricks to kayak.

Subscribe Now!