Alphonso X's Book of Games
Alphonso X's Book of Games (In Spanish: Libro de los Juegos" or "Libros del Axedrez, Dados et Tablas") is an invaluable source of information on games of the past. It was commissioned between 1251 and 1282 A.D. by Alphonso X, King of Leon and Castile. It consists of 98 vellum pages bound in sheepskin and includes 150 color drawings. It is now housed at the monastery library of St. Lorenze del Escorial.
A number of years ago I started building a website to share images from Alphonso X's Book of Games using photos of the MS collected from various soource and later some higher resolution photos that were kindly gifted to me. As a historical re-enactor (and a maker / seller of historic games) I thought others could benefit from free access to these illustrations. Since then a scholar translated the MS and a Mr. Alex Rossiter combined the photos I was given with that translation as a free PDF making my clumbsy old website unnecessary. Below are links to the translation and the hi-res photos that were gifted to me.
A translation of the manuscript by Sonja Musser Gollady,
and illustrated with images from my old website.
Download the Translation in PDF format (5.33 MB)
A dissertation on the manuscript written by the above translator
is available online from the University of Arizona.
Download the dissertation PDF (almost 7 MB)
Download the Uncropped Hi-res Photos of the MS that were my source
The digital images were from a facsimile edition of the ms. T.I.6 of the library of El Escorial (Madrid), The facsimile is a faithful reproduction, in full color, of the 13th century codex, integrated by 98 sheets of parchment. 29 x 42 cm, bound in leather, and stamped with the grill symbol from El Escorial and illuminated with 150 miniatures occuping the upper third of each page. (ISBN 84-85935-28-4). The images are for non-profit use only, and are intended to be used for study and research.
Download Zip File of the Photos