Courtly Love In Secular Art

1796 Words8 Pages
Chess is a game of strategy; of being able to anticipate your opponents next move; to play the board to your advantage, and to finish victorious after the death-blow of 'Check Mate ' is uttered. Many may wonder why the game of chess is presented so frequently throughout secular art of the early 14th century, and why it is more often than not, present in scenes associated with love. In a period of time where secular art was dominated with love connotations, and the target audience was couples who could identify with the subject, chess, in this context, can be interpreted in several different ways. This being said, I believe the most plausible interpretation of the meaning behind the chessboard being ever present is due to the game of chess being a metaphor for the game of love and the literary ideal of courtly love. These interpretations of the meaning behind chess in secular art can be illustrated through examples of objects from the 14th century which represent love scenes involving chess. Objects of courtly love, given between the lover to express their devotion and investment in the relationship are the best evidence we have of this courtly ideal, with many featuring scenes revolving around the chessboard. Chess was not solely associated with lovers, and was an integral part of the education of knights due to the strategic aspects of the game, however, I will be looking as chess with specific relations to lovers and romance and the symbolic nature of the game of chess,

More about Courtly Love In Secular Art

Open Document