He fram’d a tablet of celestial mold
Inlay’d with squares of silver and of gold;
Then of two metals form’d the warlike band,
That here compact in show of battle stand;
He taught the rules that guide the pensive game,
And call’d it Cassa from the dryad’s name.


Canst thou no play, no soothing game devise;
To make thee lovely in the damsel’s eyes?

Of chess’ many origin stories, the tale of Caissa (kah-EE-suh) perhaps best captures the enchanting beauty of the game.

Inspired by Marco Girolamo Vida’s 1527 poem Scacchia Ludus, English philologist Sir William Jones, wrote Caissa, detailing Mars’ attempt to win over the alluring yet elusive woman the poem is named after.

Mars gifts Caissa with the beautiful and elaborately designed chess set and proceeds to teach the goddess the ways of the game. In the end, he wins more than just her affection and she, eternal fame.

Caissa’s legacy is one of luck, often thought to guide or inspire players on their journey through the game.

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ATAB Chess Dhurrie Set
Shot by Charlie Hawks

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ATAB Chess Dhurrie Set
Shot by Charlie Hawks

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ATAB Chess Dhurrie Set
Shot by Charlie Hawks

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ATAB Chess Dhurrie Set
Shot by Charlie Hawks

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ATAB Chess Dhurrie Set
Shot by Charlie Hawks

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ATAB Chess Dhurrie Set
Shot by Charlie Hawks