In the second half of the 14th c., the author of an English romance of chivalry described how in Charlemagne's time, so in the 9th c., knights spent their time. They go hawking and hunt for deer, fox and hare, play with a spear or try a play of fencing with sword and shield. Those who stay at home
2224 pleyeth to the eschekkere / & summe of hem to iew-de-dame: and summe to tablere
["Sir Ferumbras", c. 1380, ed. London 1897 series Eearly English Text Society].
Iew de dame, a French name, is part of an enumeration consisting of three elements. As eschekkere (chess) and tablere (tables) are board games, iew de dame must be a board game too. For this reason the reference is an evidence against the etymology French jeu de dames < French dame = 'chess queen'. See for an in-depth comment Stoep 2005:21-24.
|A medieval sovereign addresses knights|