House of Hauteville Chessmen - Antique White and Black Marble Resin
Select An Optional Board
About the House of Hauteville Chessmen - Antique White and Black Marble Resin
The House of Hauteville Chess Set was inspired by the adventurous Normans who invaded Italy in the Eleventh Century. It is an artist's dream come true. ChessHouse brings you artist Carolyn Cavanaugh's design, now produced in limited quantities right here in the USA. Her masterpiece is now available to chess collectors and artists. An initial production was donated to the Smithsonian's benefit auction and brought in over $500.
"The inspiration for this set came from a friend who asked me to make a mantle piece based on a pawn
she had seen in a book by John Norwich. I read the book, The Normans in Sicily, and fell in love with the
idea of these brave men. The knights and the pawn are directly based on some 11th century Norman wood
chessmen that have been preserved at The Biblioteque de National in France. The other pieces are original
imaginings. I gave the king a cat because there is a saying (of later vintage) that "a cat may look upon a
king." The queen has a hawk because she is a warrior woman. I've named the king and queen after the
famous warrior duo, Robert Guiscard and his wife Sichelgaita. I often refer to the knights as Tancred and
Drogo, also names in the Norman Hauteville family."
"I once attended a lecture by Lord Norwich at the Smithsonian. He was not talking about his book on the
Normans, but about his mother. Nonetheless I arranged to have someone at Smithsonian give him the six little
figures to take home with him. He wrote me a letter of thanks and said he keeps them on the mantle. John
Julius Norwich is a brilliant writer and has many wonderful books to his credit."
- Carolyn Cavanaugh; Creator of The House of Hauteville Chess Set
Each piece was originally modeled in clay, then molded and reproduced in wax. The wax patterns were refined for better detail and final molds were made for reproduction. They are cast in stone resin. These pieces are handcrafted entirely in the US. The pieces are substantial from 3 to 5 inches tall and are ideal with a chessboard with at least 2" squares.
Designed for the enjoyment of all, the serious player and the collector, we hope everyone will enjoy the artistry and humor of this impressive work.
The recommended chessboard for these chessmen is the 21" Hardwood Player's Chessboard and is handcrafted in the USA from premium walnut and maple with a lacquer finish for an ultra smooth playing experience and display quality.
- King height: 5"
- King weight: 7.7 oz
- Base size: 1 7/8"
- Pawn size: 3 3/8"
- Bases felted with four black dots
- Weight: 9+ pounds. Weight varies slightly from set to set.
- Made of marble resin.
- 32 pieces - 1 Queen per side