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Chess piece bought for $6 in 1964 valued at up to $1.3 million

By Ben Hooper
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Chess piece bought for $6 in 1964 valued at up to $1.3 million
A chess piece purchased by a Scottish antiques dealer for $6 in 1964 was identified as a rare Lewis Chessman and was valued at up to $1.3 million. Photo courtesy of Sotheby's

June 3 (UPI) -- An ivory chess piece bought for $6 by a Scottish antiques dealer in the 1960s was found in a drawer and is now expected to sell for up to $1.3 million.

Auction house Sotheby's said the piece, dubbed the Lewis Warder, is believed to be among the Lewis Chessmen found on the Isle of Lewis in Scotland's Outer Hebrides in 1831.

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The pieces are believed to have been carved in Trondheim, Norway, in the late 12th or early 13th century before making their way to the Isle of Lewis, where 93 pieces were discovered in 1931.

The Lewis Warder, which would have been used in the same way as the rook in a modern game of chess, was described as an "Antique Walrus Tusk Warrior Chessman" by the antiques dealer who purchased it in 1964.

The piece was passed on to the man's daughter, who stored it in a drawer until it was recently discovered by her family and analyzed by experts, who identified it as a Lewis Chessman.

The auction house said the piece is expected to sell for up to $1.3 million dollars when it goes up for auction July 2.

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