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The ancient Roman game Board played an unknown game

Chess Board brought from the army of a German Prince who so loved the game that literally took her with him to the grave.


The Board of burials in Poprad. (Photo: Matej Ruttkay / The Slovak Spectator.)

The Board of burials in Poprad. (Photo: Matej Ruttkay / The Slovak Spectator.)”

In 2006, one of the industrial districts of the Slovak town of Poprad have found a rich burial. It dates back to around 375 BC, and, according to archaeologists, belonged to the German Prince, who died at the age of about 30 years.

The most interesting finds from the grave is a yew tree Lodge, decorated with silver plates and a wooden playing Board. After the restoration it became clear that other such boards in the late antique Europe, there is no – a careful search among the other notable finds nothing.

It looks similar to the chess. Next found and the playing figures of green and white glass made in the Eastern Mediterranean, possibly in Syria .

Ulrich Sadler, Director of the Swiss Museum of games, said that similar markings found on stones in the streets of ancient cities and on the floors of the Roman and Greek temples. Portable wooden Board of Poprad is the only one in its kind. What were the rules of the game unclear.

The origin of glass, which made figurines and distant Greek and Roman analogy suggests that the unknown German Prince was somehow connected with the Roman Empire. Karol Pieta, Deputy Director of the Archaeological Institute in Nitra (Slovakia), believes that rich lover of the game could serve in the Roman army may at some relatively high position. The Prince could take the game back with him to his native land.

That he returned home, said analysis of bone: the Prince grew up in the same natural environment in which his then and buried, although for some time he lived in the Mediterranean region.

The Board can be seen in the exposition of the local Museum at the end of 2018. By this time Ulrich Sadler hopes to reconstruct how it was used.

According to the materials of The Slovak Spectator.

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