New theories abound on Lewis Chessmen

David Caldwell of the National Museum of Scotland does not believe the recognized theory that the famous Chessmen of Lewis belonged to a merchant passing through Scotland. Caldwell thinks the owner was a noble who lived in the area, and that the pieces may not have been "chessmen" at all.

Caldwell believes that the game pieces are Scandinavian in origin and may actually have belonged to a game called Hnefatafl which has not survived to the present day. His research is the topic of an article in the most recent issue of Medieval Archaeology.