Grand Imperial Collector Chessmen.
Offered here is a set of the Grand Imperial Collector Chessmen, housed in a large lined and divided Premium Red Mahogany hinge-top box. The chessmen are very heavily weighted and cushioned with real English green baize base pads. The King stands a massive 6-0″ tall with a 2-3/8″ diameter base. The chessmen are available in Boxwood and either Ebony or Red Sandalwood as pictured. Please indicate your choice when placing an order. A comparison of the Grand Imperial with the Full Club-size Imperial pieces is shown in the gallery. This set of chessmen includes an extra pair of Queens to assist during Pawn Promotion, a feature pioneered by us in 1995. The chess pieces were produced in 1996 and are copyrighted. The chessmen play and display best on a chessboard with 3-0″ to 3-1/4″ squares. Suitable chessboards can be found elsewhere on this site. For a large selection of premium chessboards, click here.
The House of Staunton was founded in 1990 and incorporated in 1999. When building the House of Staunton, our vision was to create a set of chessmen that captured the feel and exquisite old-World craftsmanship found in those early Jaques Staunton pattern chess sets. In line with that pursuit, we concentrated on recreating the masterful workmanship of the Bishops and the Knights which were derived from the noble steeds whose visages are captured in the Parthenon frieze (expropriated in 1806 by Thomas Bruce, 7th Lord of Elgin and since referred to as the Elgin Marbles). We also wanted to retain the graceful proportional relationship among the pieces and Pawns. We hope we have been somewhat successful in that pursuit.
The Imperial Collector design is based on the original Staunton chessmen, registered by Nathaniel Cooke in March of 1849 and exclusively manufactured by Jaques of London. The Knight has been modified and is the unique feature common to all members of the Imperial Collector Series. We have faithfully retained the Staunton Bishop’s wide, open-mitered headpiece. Originally, this was an abstract representation of a flame (tongues of fire), the ecclesiastical representation for Wisdom, which in Christianity represents enlightenment imparted by the Holy Spirit. Contemporary Bishop designs have lost that original religious connection.