The House of Staunton

 

 

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The Internet's Largest Selection of Chess Sets and Chess Boards

Luxury Chess Sets

(Pieces Only) The House of Staunton is proud to carry on the Staunton chess set tradition by crafting the world's finest luxury chess sets. Our luxury chess sets are crafted out of the finest woods and adhere to the highest quality standards in the chess set industry.

Wood Chess Sets

(Pieces Only) The House of Staunton is the largest retailer of wood chess sets in the world. With our team of experienced chess set specialists available to answer your questions about our wood chess sets, it has never been easier to buy the perfect wood chess set.

Wood Chess Sets

(With Board and Box) We at the House of Staunton understand that buying a wood chess set can be a daunting task. Which woods? Which square size? Which chess box? Our wood chess set combinations make it easy to find the wood chess set that is perfect for you!

Themed Chess Sets

(Pieces Only)
Isle of Lewis Chess Set, Richard the Lionheart Chess Set and the Battle of Hastings are just a few of the Themed Chess Sets available at the House of Staunton. With our everyday low prices and same day shipping, why buy a Themed Chess Set anywhere else?

Jaques Chess Sets

Jaques of London is one of the world's most recognized names in the manufacturing of wood chess sets. Renowned for their long, illustrious history (since 1794) and unparalleled collectibility, Jaques of London Chess Sets make a wonderful addition to any chess collection.

Plastic Chess Sets

(Pieces Only) The House of Staunton is your one-stop shop for all of your plastic chess set needs. Whether you're looking for plastic chess sets for a chess club, a classroom, or an upcoming chess tournament, we offer the largest selection and low prices on plastic chess sets.

Luxury Wooden Chess Boards

Looking for a unique Luxury Wooden Chess Board? All of the Luxury Wooden Chess Boards offered by the House of Staunton can be custom manufactured to your exact specifications. Now you can create the Chess Board that is truly perfect for you!

Wooden Chess Boards

Across the world, the House of Staunton has established itself as the leading manufacturer of Wooden Chess Boards. Each year, we sell thousands of Wooden Chess Boards to customers from across the world because of our legendary quality and affordable prices.

Chess Boards

Looking for a high quality Chess Board? You've come to the right place! All Chess Boards offered by the House of Staunton are of the highest quality. Why settle for less when you can own a genuine House of Staunton Chess Board!

Chess Clocks

The House of Staunton has the widest selection of Chess Clocks from such leading manufacturers as Saitek, Excalibur, DGT Projects and ZMart Fun, all available at the lowest prices anywhere. We even offer batteries - let us take the hassle out of shopping for a chess clock!

Chess Bags

The House of Staunton is proud to offer our signature line of Chess Bags. From Chess Bags for protecting your favorite Wooden Chess Board to Chess Bags for carrying your roll-up chess board, plastic chess pieces and chess clock, the House of Staunton has the chess bag that is perfect for you.

Tournament Chess Sets

The House of Staunton makes it easy to gear up for your next big tournament. We have the biggest selection of tournament chess sets that exceed all USCF Tournament Standards. Whether you're on a budget or looking for the highest quality tournament chess sets, you'll find them here at the lowest prices.

Chess Books

Looking for Chess Books? You've found them! The House of Staunton specializes in Chess Books, with nearly 2,000 Chess Books and Chess Magazines that are in-stock and ready to ship. Don't see the Chess Book that you're looking us? Ask us! We probably have it!

Chess Software

With more than 500 different Chess Software programs available, all at our everyday low prices, The House of Staunton is your #1 source for Chess Software. No matter what Chess Software you're looking for, you'll find it at the House of Staunton.

Chess DVDs & Videos

Chess DVDs are the best way to improve your Chess! They're up to 70% more effective than Chess Books, and a lot more fun. If you're serious about wanting to improve your chess, we invite you to browse the more than 700 Chess DVDs available from the House of Staunton.

 

The History of the Staunton Pattern Chess Pieces

During the first half of the 19th century, a surge in the global popularity of chess brought about the demand for a uniform model of chess pieces. While the variety and styles of chess pieces that were in use at the time were extensive, they were decorative in nature and considered unsuitable for play. It is important to remember that chess has historically been enjoyed by the wealthy, a fact that is reflected in the artistic designs of chess sets that dominated the marketplace. While aesthetically beautiful, the chess pieces of the period were not very practical. The chess pieces were expensive to produce, cumbersome to use, prone to tipping over and had such ornate details that they were unable to withstand the wear and tear of regular use. However the greatest disadvantage of these chess sets was the lack of uniformity of the pieces within a chess set - a player's unfamiliarity with a particular chess set could affect the outcome of the game. Complaints such as these led to the search for a standard design of chess pieces. On September 1, 1849, #58607 - An Ornamental Design for a Set of Chess-Men was registered by Mr. Nathaniel Cooke under the British Ornamental Designs Act of 1842.

 

Our research has lead us to conclude that the basis for this new design of chess pieces was the Nothern Upright Chess set. Complaints about the contemporary designs of chess pieces were well established in chess circles. By starting with an extremely popular yet highly artistic chess set, Mr. Cook was able to focus his energies solely on correcting those deficiencies. The ornate features that were most susceptible to damage were removed, resulting in a chess set that was durable and less expensive to produce. The diameter of the bases was widened for increased stability and the chess pieces were weighted with lead to minimize tip over. Before the commercial launch of these new chess pieces, Mr. Cook convinced Howard Staunton to lend his prestigious name to the new design. Mr. Staunton was England's most celebrated Chess personality and the unofficial World Chmmpion. The Staunton Pattern Chessmen, as they were officially known, became commercially available on September 29, 1849 and quickly became the world standard of chess pieces. Their lower production cost brought chess to the masses and did much to popularize the game.

 

Its clean, simple design has never been equalled - the Staunton Pattern chess set looks as modern today as it did upon its introduction more than 150 years ago. The House of Staunton is proud to carry on this tradition by producing the finest Staunton Pattern Chess Pieces and Chess Sets.

 

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