Features Podcast

Medieval Chess: Alfonso X’s Book of Games

From chess and backgammon to politics, courtly culture and race relations.  On this episode of the Medieval Grad Podcast, Lucie Laumonier interviews Alexandra Montero Peters about her research into the wonderfully illuminated thirteenth-century manuscript known as the Book of Games. A great episode to know everything about chess, Iberian court culture and politics all at once!

Alexandra Montero Peters is a PhD candidate in history at the University of Chicago and has been recently awarded the American Association of University Women (AAUW) American Dissertation Fellowship for 2021-22. Congratulations! You can learn more about Alexandra on either her university page or her page.


You can see more images from the Book of Games (Libro de los Juegos) through the Patrimonio Nacional, including this wonderful image:

Image courtesy Alexandra Montero Peters

Some of the books Alexandra recommends are:

Alfonso X, the Learned: A Biography

Arte y Ciencia en el scriptorium de Alfonso X el Sabio

You can also check out David Nirenberg’s Communities of Violence: Persecution of Minorities in the Middle Ages 


The Medieval Grad Podcast is a new podcast here at Look for two episodes to be released each month – if you are part of our Patreon you can listen to these episodes early!

You can listen to the podcast via LibsynSpotifyApple Podcasts, or through your favourite podcast player.

Lucie Laumonier is an affiliate assistant professor at Concordia University. Click here to view her page or follow her on Instagram at The French Medievalist. She is also a columnist on, writing about agriculture and rural life in the Middle Ages.

The music in this podcast is La douce jouvencelle

Top Image: Courtesy Alexandra Montero Peters