Hnefatafl - the Viking game

 
Hnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters Edition

Hnefatafl - the Viking game

The family of Tafl games is at least 1,500 years old and is most closely associated with the Vikings who brought it to all parts of Scandinavia, Britain and many parts of Europe and Russia.

The game is a fascinating game of unequal forces and different objectives. The attackers aim to surround and kill the enemy King while the defenders must protect their King as he tries to escape to a corner of the board. The game is simple to learn but can require deep thought - a classic game of strategic warfare.

The etymology of the word Hnefatafl is disputed but 'hnefi' translates as 'fist' and often referred to the king-piece and tafl in old Norse came to be a generic term for board game. Therefore a likely interpretation is King's Board or King's Table.

 




















 

Hnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters Edition

Hnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters EditionHnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters Edition
Hnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters EditionHnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters Edition
Hnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters EditionHnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters Edition
Hnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters EditionHnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters Edition
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Hnefatafl - the Viking game - Masters Edition

Ref: 00H720

£27.99

£23.33 (Ex.VAT)

ETA: 1 working day + transit time


 
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  • Fascinating board game of Viking origin - at least 1500 years old
  • A strategic war game of unequal forces
  • Easy to learn but can require deep thought and strategic thinking
  • High quality resin pieces with exceptional levels of detail
  • Includes a fabric board with fine printing

Made in Britain

Hnefatafl is a fascinating game of Viking origin that is at least 1500 years old. It is a deeply strategic war game of unequal sides with the king and his guards outnumbered by the attacking forces. The 'white' player must move their King to one of the corner squares to win, whilst the 'dark' player must hinder the progress and capture / kill the King.

This premium quality Hnefatafl set contains beautiful, moulded, resin pieces with exceptional levels of detail. The pieces are in two different designs and finished in simulated wood and cream colours. They are based on the famous 12th century Lewis Chessmen.

A natural linen board is also included and is nicely decorated with typical Viking patterns in the design. The linen board is lightweight, practical and can be folded / rolled up for easy storage.

The game is presented in a decorated cardboard box and comes with a set of multi-lingual rules based on those played in the 9th and 10th centuries and using the Hnefatafl board of 11 x 11 squares.

Approx. Dimensions:

Box: 29.5 x 15 x 3.5cm. Weight: 0.5kg
Box: 11.6x5.9x1.4 inch. Weight: 1lb, 2oz

Contains small parts. Unsuitable for children younger than 4 years old.
















 

Tablut

TablutTablut
TablutTablut
TablutTablut
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Tablut


Apologies - out of stock. Date new stock due: unknown. Email us to be notified when new stock arrives.

Ref: 0006HW

Was: £27.99

£26.49

£22.08 (Ex.VAT)

ETA: 1 working day + transit time


 
For an immediate quote & ETA, add to the basket & select your location.

  • Hnefatafl game with a wooden cabinet board and wooden playing pieces
  • Board lifts up to reveal storage area for playing pieces
  • Nicely painted wooden playing pieces
  • Hardwood construction with hinged lid
  • Rules included

The family of Tafl games is at least 1,500 years old and Tablut, this version of the game, is based upon a game found in Lapland in 1732. This type of game is most closely associated with the Vikings who brought it to all parts of Scandinavia, Britain and many parts of Europe and Russia.

Tablut translates as "Kings Table" in Icelandic and it is a fascinating game of unequal forces and different objectives. The dark Muscovites aim to surround and kill the enemy King while the blonde Swedes must protect their King as he tries to escape to a corner of the board. The game is simple to learn but can require deep thought; some believe it is a forerunner of chess.

The Tablut box is made from hardwood and measures 22.5 x 22.5 x 5.5cm (9 x 9 x 2.25 inches). The top is hinged and opens so that the pieces and rules can be stored inside the box.

Approx. Dimensions:

Board: 225 x 225 x 54mm
Board: 8.9x8.9x2.1 inch

Contains small parts. Unsuitable for children younger than 4 years old.

















The Origin of Tafl Games



Games of the Tafl family are distinguished by the unequal size of the opposing forces. The objective is usually for the force of fewer numbers to take all the members of the larger forces whose aim is generally to stop them doing so. A fragment of a gaming board of 18 x 18 squares, found in Wimose, Fyn, Denmark dated prior to AD400 is the first evidence of a game called Tafl, which also regularly appears in the early Icelandic sagas. Tafl apparently developed into Hnefatafl (which literally translates as 'Kings Table'), which was played by the Saxons as well as other Northern Europeans on the same size board and which is mentioned in Icelandic sagas from the beginning of the fourteenth century. The Vikings took the game with them on their forages which helped it to spread far and wide.

It isn't known exactly how either Tafl or Hnefatafl were played but evidence shows that the game of Tablut, described by a traveller called Linnaeus during his trip to Finland in 1732, is likely to have been very similar to Hnefatafl. The later British game Fox & Geese, still played today is an ancestor of the game converted to use a chessboard.

You can learn more about the History of Tablut from The Online Guide to Traditional Games.

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