My 1928 Knights in Shining Armor
As a researcher of quests for hidden treasure and an avid collector of games, I love finding items which combine elements of both. I am easily drawn to games where player’s missions involve the search for, or gathering of, treasured items, like the newer games of Forbidden Island or Dragon’s Hoard.
Older games dealing with quests are even more of an attraction for me. And although the 1928 game of The Knight’s Journey by Parker Brothers, with its winding path through story land legends and goal to first reach the castle space immediately caught my eye, it was the game pieces which melted my heart.
These player’s game tokens were not merely wooden pawns or discs, but extraordinary knights in shining armor made of heavy lead. Each held their own painted shields and weapons of different colors. I knew I had to have them; for not only did The Knight’s Journey game merge my interests, but within my collection of games is a smaller collection of unique game pieces. I felt like I found the Grail. lol.
These charming knights now sit in an esteemed spot on top a book shelf in my office. They quietly stand tall and watch over the room. The large game board rises behind them and illustrates spaces on the board called the Circle of Doubt, Circle of Fear, or Circle of Indecision, to name a few. Other spaces, like the Circle of Reward or Defeated the Dragon are also found.
The questing knights and their challenging journey remind me of the many obstacles we all face during life. It seems for any great achievement, trials must first be overcome.
I know they are only game pieces but I visualize them secretly offering inspiration and encouragement. As the shelf of books they are positioned on holds my many books of research and treasure hunting stories and dares, I see them each time I take a book to explore off of it. Being knights in shining armor, I imagine the pieces whispering words to cheer the task. Words like;
“The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials.”
“When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back.” ~ Paulo Coelho
“If you aren’t in over your head, how do you know how tall you are?” ~ T.S. Eliot
“The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it.” ~ Moiere
“Say it, reader. Say the word ‘quest’ out loud. It is an extraordinary word, isn’t it? So small and yet so full of wonder, so full of hope.” ~ Kate DiCamillo, The Tale of Despereaux
“Everything you possess of skill, and wealth, and handicraft, wasn’t it first merely a thought and a quest?” ~ Rumi
Sure, I know it is just a romantic thought they guide me through my own journeys, but they are knights in shining armor and are supposed to charm. So I let them.