This CD is an audio reading of the book The Lewis Chessmen and what happened to them, read by the renowned historian David Attenborough.
The Lewis Chessmen are probably the world's most famous chessmen. They were found on the Isle of Lewis in mysterious circumstances. They consist of elaborately worked walrus ivory and whales’ teeth in the form of seated kings and queens, bishops, knights, warders and pawns. Dated to the 11th century, this curious chess set is strongly influenced by Norse culture.
Of the 93 pieces known to us today, 11 pieces are in Edinburgh at the National Museum of Scotland, and 82 are in the British Museum, where they have delighted generations of visitors with their wonderfully expressive details.
In this engaging story, Irving Finkel - a curator at the British Museum and the author of the book - follows the many adventures of the chessmen after they came to light on a Scottish beach in the nineteenth century. It ends with the big surprise that befell them in September 1993, when they were all temporarily reunited for the first time since their separation at a special exhibition of chessmen at the British Museum.
Aimed primarily at children aged 9-11, this audio CD engages children with Museum objects and history, though the story will also appeal to adults.
Irving Finkel is Assistant Keeper of ancient Mesopotamian scripts, languages and cultures at the British Museum. Irving specializes in cuneiform inscriptions, and ancient Mesopotamian medicine and magic and is also dedicated to working with children and adults to promote familiarity with the museum’s collection.
Sir David Attenborough is Britain's best-known natural history film-maker. His career as a naturalist and broadcaster has spanned nearly six decades.