The Chasidim-Franciscan Chess Set
The Ideology Behind the Chess Set: The Influence of Venetian Culture.
Besides the art and music, a considerable portian of Venetian culture comes from the literature written over several centuries for Commedia dell'arte, the oldest European theatre, from which Shakespeare, Molier, and Bertold Brach, Pirandello learned about theatre.
Commedia dell'arte featured comedy and satire about human behavior, particularly portraying the high class aristocrats of society. This chess set portrays the pardox between the Catholics and Jews, because in order to be a good player, you must have a very rational mind. These two groups of people represent, on the Catholic side, the Franciscan philosopy to live by the Christian faith. The Jewish set, depicted as Chasidim, portrays the strong philosophy to live by the Jewish faith. Here lies the paradox: Philosophy as the antithesis of rationality