When contacting us by e-mail, correspondents are asked to include their name and full postal address and, when providing information, to quote exact book and magazine sources. The word ‘chess’ needs to appear in the subject-line or in the message itself.
James Mason (Hastings, 1895 tournament book, opposite page 19)
Source: An article entitled ‘James Mason’ by W.H. Watts on pages 82-83 of the Chess Budget, 19 December 1925.
W.H. Watts added:
The appreciation by Watts then discussed Mason on a more personal level:
It was the same frontispiece as in The Principles of Chess in Theory and Practice, which was shown in C.N. 9610.
Writing in the Chess Budget (C.N. 9611), W.H. Watts stated that James Mason died on 18 January 1905. No place was mentioned.
Many contradictory versions can be found, the most obviously wrong being what appeared in Harry Golombek’s Encyclopedia of Chess. In the entries on Mason in both the hardback and paperback editions (1977 and 1981 respectively), 15 January 1909 was given. From some other reference books:
The British newspapers of 1905 that we have seen so far offer little information of substance. As regards chess magazines of the time, a selection is shown below, beginning with page 44 of the Wiener Schachzeitung, February 1905:
Page xi of the 1947 edition of The Art of Chess (revised and edited by F. Reinfeld and S. Bernstein) affirmed that Mason ‘died in Rochdale, England on 18 January 1905’. Jeremy Gaige’s Chess Personalia (Jefferson, 1987 and the unpublished 1994 edition) had 15 January 1905 in Rochford, England. Page 141 of James Mason in America by J. van Winsen (Jefferson, 2011) gave 12 January 1905, with a footnote stating that ‘Mason’s death certificate has the date 12 January 1905’.
Further information is sought. The place name ‘Rochford’ (as opposed to Rochdale, Lancashire) is corroborated by a news paragraph on page 468 of the December 1904 BCM:
The earliest occurrence of ‘Rochdale’ that we have traced is in the obituary by Hoffer, which had several errors, in the Field, 21 January 1905:
From page 51 of Chess World, March-April 1967:
The caption reported that she was aged 5¾.
From a syndicated column (19 November 2000) by Larry Evans:
Evans did not bother to give a source or to name the ‘wag’.
The remark was by C.J.S. Purdy, on page 120 of the July-August 1967 Chess World. The passage can also be found on page 67 of The Search for Chess Perfection II by C.J.S. Purdy (Davenport, 2006) and on page 149 of The Chess Gospel According to John edited by R.J. Tykodi and Bob Long (Davenport, 2010).
In isolation and out of context, the words extracted by Evans give a false impression of Purdy’s view of Reinfeld as a chess writer. See, for instance, C.N. 9586.
From William D. Rubinstein (Melbourne, Australia):
C.N. 9612 quoted Hoffer’s statement in the Field of (Saturday) 21 January 1905 that Mason had died on Wednesday which, we noted, indicated 18 January. However, if Hoffer had in mind the previous Wednesday, his information would match that quoted by Professor Rubinstein.
Harrie Grondijs (Maastricht, the Netherlands) forwards two references to chess on pages 92 and 211 of The Life and Letters of Lewis Carroll (Rev. C.L. Dodgson) by Stuart Dodgson Collingwood (New York, 1889).
Below is the text as it appeared in our slightly later edition (undated):
From pages 83-84 (1862):
From page 176 (1880):
From Dominique Thimognier (Fondettes, France) comes this report on page 4 of Le Temps, 13 November 1911:
Regarding Basile Samsonoff, the only player to defeat Capablanca, Mr Thimognier also provides a cutting from page 2 of La Tribune de Lausanne et Estafette, 1 December 1911:
Our correspondent adds that the following year Samsonoff played in the Swiss championship in Lausanne, and we give below part of the report on page 159 of the September 1912 Schweizerische Schachzeitung:
Avital Pilpel (Haifa, Israel) notes a pair of books published in 2015: The Ultimate Chess Playing Guide. The Best Openings, Closings, Strategies & Learn To Play Like A Pro by Terence North and Chess. Dominate Chess Openings, Closings, Chess Strategies and Tactics Like a Pro by Matt Sigs. From what is viewable at Amazon.com, including the sample content, strangely worded titles (both with ‘Closings’), unfamiliar authors’ names, and the large number of reviews, Mr Pilpel became both suspicious and curious, and he asked us for further information about the books.
We dutifully acquired them, and below, without comment but grouped together under our own headings, is an extensive sample of the chess instruction in the 46-page book by ‘Terence North’.
The book’s aim
The board and pieces
The value of the pieces
The aim of the game
Tactics and strategy
Roger Scowen (Hampton, England) points out that the Lewis Carroll Society has a page about his interest in chess.
From the third match-game between Janowsky and Marshall, Biarritz, 4 September 1912 (Black to move):
Marshall played 12...Qxf3, and commented on page 50 of Marshall’s Chess “Swindles” (New York, 1914):
A similar remark was on page 141 of My Fifty Years of Chess by Frank J. Marshall (New York, 1942):
The Introduction to Marshall’s 1914 book had this note on the term:
Proceeding in reverse chronological order, we give now an extract from pages 39-40 of the January-February 1907 Wiener Schachzeitung, in connection with Marshall’s game against Heinrich Wolf at Nuremberg, 8 August 1906:
From page 11 of Hermann Helms’ coverage of the Marshall v Tarrasch match on page 11 of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, 15 October 1905:
Another remark by Helms is on page 85 of volume two of Halpern’s Chess Symposium (New York, 1905) – concerning the position after 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 f5 in the 14th match-game between Janowsky and Marshall in Paris, 25 February 1905:
The game with Helms’ notes is on pages 52-53 of Marshall’s Chess “Swindles”.
An earlier occurrence of the term, also in Helms’ journalism, was on page 24 of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, 6 March 1904:
When was the word ‘swindle’ first used in connection with Marshall’s play?
The following paragraph is from page 51 of Frank Marshall, United States Chess Champion by A. Soltis (Jefferson, 1994):
Soltis did not specify his source or indicate whether the quoted words were his own translation. Can a reader provide the original Russian text? For now, we can give only the following on page 477 of the November 1903 BCM, with ‘rogue’ instead of ‘swindler’:
From page 132 of Chess World, September-October 1967:
Position after 14 Nf3-d2 and before 14...O-O-O
C.N. 795 mentioned the castling incident which occurred in Averbakh v Purdy, Adelaide, 1960, as reported on page 110 of Wonders and Curiosities of Chess by Irving Chernev (New York, 1974). In The Facts about Larry Evans we commented:
Subsequently (Chess Life, August 2002, page 47), Evans achieved a correct diagram.
The game was misdated 1961, instead of 1960, by T. Krabbé on page 281 of the May 1976 Chess Life & Review and on page 6 of Chess Curiosities (London, 1985), as well as by R. Timmer on page 49 of Startling Castling! (London, 1997) and by E. Schiller on page 396 of Encyclopedia of Chess Wisdom (New York, 1999). On pages 100-101 of The Book of Chess Lists (Jefferson, 1984) A. Soltis managed the right year but asserted that ‘R-QN7’ had been played by Averbakh.
Chernev’s above-mentioned account quoted Purdy’s words (albeit without specifying their provenance) and is the most detailed and accurate version found in a secondary source. Later writers took the matter backwards, not forwards.
Purdy had annotated his loss to Averbakh on pages 221-222 of Chess World, November 1960, and after 14...O-O-O he wrote: ‘Amusing incident here: see October, page 198’. In that earlier issue Purdy reported:
The episode was referred to again by Purdy on page 124 of the July-August 1967 Chess World (which included an impossible date, Sunday, 17 January, in connection with Averbakh’s further stay in Australia):
As regards Averbakh’s side of the story, however, the final paragraph of a review (by ‘B.C.’ – Bernard Cafferty) of his book V poiskakh istiny (Moscow, 1967) on page 2 of CHESS, October 1967 deserves attention:
Towards the end of the Adelaide tournament Averbakh spoke highly of Purdy in an interview with W.J. Geus (Chess World, October 1960, page 211):
The latest McFarland book received is Ignaz Kolisch The Life and Chess Career by Fabrizio Zavatarelli (Jefferson, 2015). There have already been articles about it by speed-readers (or, better say, speed-reviewers), and whereas many people review books without reading them, we prefer to do the reverse. Based on an initial browse and spot-check, a single (tentative) comment is offered here: Fabrizio Zavatarelli’s monograph on Kolisch may prove to be one of the most accurate chess books that McFarland & Company, Inc. has ever published.
Our latest feature article is Reviewing Chess Books.
Bruce Monson (Colorado Springs, CO, USA) has pointed out an article, ‘The Mysterious Knight Move’, on pages 30-33 of the February 2015 Mensa Bulletin, and we are grateful to the writer, Frank Camaratta (Huntsville, AL, USA), for permission to reproduce extracts:
Diagram 3 showed how the ‘primordial bishop, or al-fil, ... has the ability to jump one square diagonally in any direction. It does not control the intervening square, nor can it be obstructed’, and Mr Camaratta then commented, in connection with Diagram 4 (showing a rook): ‘Logically then, there must have been, at least in the embryonic forms of chess, a piece that “jumped” like the bishop but horizontally and vertically rather than diagonally.’
Black to move
Although well known, Hermann Helms’ brilliancy against Smyth, played in New York in 1915, sometimes appears as Schmidt v Helms, Germany, 1925. See, for instance, page 220 of A Complete Chess Course by Antonio Gude (London, 2015), as well as page 83 of Checkmate Tactics by Garry Kasparov (London, 2010):
We warmly recommend volumes one and two of For Friends & Colleagues by Mark Dvoretsky (Milford, 2014 and 2015).
From Oliver Beck (Seattle, WA, USA):
Below is the text published on page 99 of the May-June 1916 American Chess Bulletin, which quoted from Howard L. Dolde’s column in the Pittsburgh Gazette Times of 7 May 1916, sixth section, page 8:
Chess chatterers have availed themselves of the remark, and the following ‘once’ version comes from page 112 of Impact of Genius by R.E. Fauber (Seattle, 1992):
Also in the next paragraph (headed ‘The Curse of Capablanca’), almost every assertion by Fauber can be queried:
Further to mention of the letter L in explanations of the knight’s move, it is worth adding that Russian-language sources often refer to the Г, as in the word Гамбит. A passage from page 7 of The Life and Games of Mikhail Tal (New York, 1976):
The text is on page 17 of the London, 1997 edition.
When Irving Chernev gave the Smyth v Helms game on pages 488-489 of 1000 Best Short Games of Chess (New York, 1955), his final note quoted Helms:
Where did Helms make that remark?
Position after 49...Rg2
In C.N. 9629 a correspondent referred to a discrepancy in the conclusion of the blindfold game Alekhine v Padulli, Milan, 25 March 1923. Whereas page 187 of the Skinner/Verhoeven volume gave ‘50 Kc2 h5 1-0’, page 120 of L’antica Storia della Società Scacchistica Milanese dal 1881 agli anni ’60, volume 1 by Alessandro Sanvito (Bologna, 2014) stated that the game was drawn after 50 Rc2.
As always, the Skinner/Verhoeven book gave a source for the game, and it is shown below, courtesy of Henk Chervet of the Koninklijke Bibliotheek in The Hague. Pages 82-83 of the April 1923 L’Italia Scacchistica:
The final note by Padulli states that after his move 50...h5 (‘?’) play in this remaining game of the display continued for more than two hours (another 40 or so moves) before he resigned, and that the game lasted eight hours in all.
To summarize: L’Italia Scacchistica had ‘50 Rb2-c2’, a king move, given that the Italian word for king is Re, but it would give away the white rook on e2. The Skinner/Verhoeven volume nonetheless put 50 Kc2 and did not mention that the game continued for dozens more moves. The Sanvito book made a correction, to 50 Rc2, but, for reasons unknown, stated that the game was then drawn.
The score: 1 d4 d6 2 e4 Nc6 3 Nc3 Nf6 4 d5 Ne5 5 f4 Ned7 6 Nf3 e5 7 dxe6 fxe6 8 e5 Ng8 9 exd6 Bxd6 10 Bc4 Nb6 11 Bb3 Nf6 12 Qe2 Qe7 13 Be3 Bd7 14 O-O-O O-O 15 Rhe1 Rae8 16 g3 Kh8 17 Bd4 Bc5 18 Bxf6 gxf6 19 Ne4 a5 20 c3 a4 21 Bc2 Nd5 22 Nxc5 Qxc5 23 a3 Bb5 24 Qe4 Rf7 25 Qd4 Qxd4 26 Nxd4 Bd7 27 c4 Nb6 28 c5 Nc8 29 c6 bxc6 30 Bxa4 Na7 31 Nb3 e5 32 Nc5 exf4 33 Rxe8+ Bxe8 34 Re1 Bd7 35 gxf4 Nb5 36 Bb3 Rg7 37 Rd1 Nd6 38 a4 Bg4 39 Re1 Bf3 40 Be6 Bd5 41 f5 Rg4 42 b3 Rg2 43 a5 Ra2 44 a6 Nb5 45 Re3 Rxh2 46 Rg3 Rg2 47 Re3 Rg5 48 Re2 Rg1+ 49 Kb2 Rg2 50 Rc2 h5, and White eventually won.
Jean-Pierre Rhéaume (Montreal, Canada) asks for information about a ‘highly humorous’ composition ‘by an unknown composer’ which was discussed by Emanuel Lasker on pages 268-269 of Lasker’s Manual of Chess (London, 1932):
That edition of the Manual is the best known, having been reissued by David McKay Company, Philadelphia in 1947 and by Dover Publications, Inc., New York in 1960.
The text on pages 299-301 of the first English-language edition (New York, 1927) differed in some respects:
The textual differences include one pointed out by our correspondent: the sentence ‘They do not wound or pain, they hit the cheek soundingly, but the sound is hollow’ was dropped by Lasker.
Below is the text as published in one of the many early editions of the Lehrbuch des Schachspiels (Berlin, 1926):
As regards the reference to ‘an unknown composer’, we noted in C.N. 7421 a letter from Richard Teasdel of Cardiff on page 342 of the August 1933 BCM:
Subsequently, Russian editions of Lasker’s book (e.g. Moscow, 1937; Moscow, 2002; Moscow, 2011; Moscow, 2014) ascribed the position to Meyer, whereas the first edition (Moscow and Leningrad, 1926) had not done so. Below, for example, are two pages from the 1937 edition:
Meyer’s name has not be found in editions of Lasker’s Manual in other languages (English, Dutch, German, Greek and Spanish).
Below is page 206 of A Complete Guide to the Game of Chess by H.F.L. Meyer (London, 1882), as referred to by Richard Teasdel in his letter to the BCM:
The solution on pages 251-252:
In addition to the positions already shown (White knights on g3/e5 and g4/h4) a third version (a3/a6) can be given, from Harold van der Heijden’s Endgame study database III:
The solution given in the database: 1 Nb5+ Kd3 2 Nb4+ Ke2 3 Nc3+ Kf2 4 Nd3+ Kg3 5 Ne2+ Kg4 6 Ne5+ Kf5 7 Ng3+ Kf6 8 Ng4+ Ke7 9 Nf5+ Kd7 10 Ne5+ Kc8 11 Ne7+ Kb8 12 Nd7+ Ka7 13 Nc8+ Ka6 14 Nb8+ Kb5 15 Na7+ Kb4 16 Na6+ Kc3 17 Nb5+ Drawn.
Further information is sought concerning the source specified in the database, ‘American Chess Nuts, 1880’, bearing in mind that the book with that title by E.B. Cook, W.R. Henry and C.A. Gilberg was published in New York in 1868.
The composition, ascribed to Meyer but with white knights on g3 and e5, was included on page 171 of Secrets of Spectacular Chess by J. Levitt and D. Friedgood (London, 1995) the condition in the caption being specified as ‘Win’. That was corrected to ‘Draw’ on page 205 of the second edition (London, 2008).
The exact origins of the three versions of the composition have yet to be sorted out, and another complication arises from a remark in the obituary of Meyer on page 101 of the February 1928 BCM:
The BCM obituary failed to give credit to the source of some of its information, i.e. page 90 of The Chess Bouquet by F.R. Gittins (London, 1897):
A final puzzle for now: both the BCM and The Chess Bouquet referred to an 1871 publication by H.F.L. Meyer, The Chess Champions of England. What is known about it?
From Olimpiu G. Urcan (Singapore):
On the subject of book reviews, as shown on page 38 of volume two of Chess Characters (Geneva, 1987) G.H. Diggle wrote in the April 1986 Newsflash:
From page 93 of CHESS, January 1940:
As pointed out by Jean-Pierre Rhéaume (Montreal, Canada), the Meyer composition was also published on page 76 of the Dictionnaire des échecs by F. Le Lionnais and E. Maget (Paris, 1967 and 1974), with a fourth initial position for the white knights: g3 and g4. Only a date, 1880, was offered:
We note that the same information was given on page 1349 of Le guide des échecs by N. Giffard and A. Biénabe (Paris, 1993) and on page 1563 of the co-authors’ Le nouveau guide des échecs (Paris, 2009). On both occasions the term ‘problémiste américain’ was used to describe Meyer.
In the Dictionnaire des échecs Meyer’s composition was included in the entry on the problem theme Le Cirque. It appeared with that heading on page 87 of the December 1910 Chess Amateur, in the ‘Gems, Old & New’ column by Thomas S. Johnston:
Regarding the so-called publication The Chess Champions of England (C.N. 9634), Michael Clapham (Ipswich, England) recalls Meyer’s ‘Champions of British Chess’ photographic chess board, discussed in C.N. 3467.
From page 159 of Chessboard Magic! by Irving Chernev (New York, 1943):
Part of the text is very similar to what appeared in an article by the composer, Theodorus Cornelis Louis Kok, on page 61 of the March 1937 Chess Review, translated from page 134 of the May 1936 Tijdschrift van den Koninklijken Nederlandschen Schaakbond:
On page 50 of the March 1987 Chess Life a reader, Jeff Moran, made a contribution to the ‘Grandmaster Larry Evans on Chess’ column:
When subsequently writing to Larry Evans with other factual corrections to his column, we informed him:
Below is what had appeared in Purdy’s magazine:
Our above-mentioned letter (5 October 1990) was answered by Evans as follows (letter dated 23 October 1990):
We replied to Evans (2 November 1990) that a correction was clearly required in Chess Life, so that due credit was given to W. Wren and Chess World, but in a further letter (12 November 1990) Evans remained intransigent:
He added some irrelevant denigration of C.J.S. Purdy:
We responded to him on 30 November 1990:
And that was that. There was nothing more from Evans, and we do not know whether his insulting words about Purdy and Chess World reflected his real view or whether he was merely lashing out to divert attention from his failure to conduct the ‘Grandmaster Larry Evans on Chess’ column accurately and fairly.
The bust regarding the Kok study was also mentioned by Gerry Dyer on page 665 of the December 1994 BCM, in K. Whyld’s Quotes and Queries column. Again, it was not realized that 1 Rc5 had been discovered long ago.
Source: Wiener Schachzeitung, April 1911, page 125.
Claus Montonen (Helsinki) is seeking information about literary works which take real chess events as their subject, his request being prompted by the play Reikiavik by Juan Mayorga (Segovia, 2015). Below are the front and back covers, as well as two sample pages:
From an editorial entitled ‘1943 ...?’ by Jean-Charles de Watteville on pages 1-2 of the Schweizerische Schachzeitung, January 1943:
The footnote on page 1 read ‘Que l’on retrouvera en entier dans la R.S.E. de 1910, p. 144’, but that reference, to the magazine’s French name (Revue suisse d’échecs), had the wrong year. Leonhardt’s poem, ‘Ich spiele Schach!’, was published on page 144 of the August 1912 issue:
From the chess column by F.W. Markwick on page 9 of the Essex Times, 22 April 1905:
1 e4 e5 2 f4 exf4 3 Nf3 g5 4 h4 g4 5 Ng5 d5 6 exd5 Be7 7 Bb5+ c6 8 dxc6 bxc6 9 Bc4 Bxg5 10 hxg5 Qxg5 11 d4 Bf5 12 O-O Ne7 13 Bxf4 Qg6 14 Qe2 Nd7 15 Nc3 Kd8 16 Rae1 Re8 17 d5 cxd5 18 Nxd5 Be6 19 Bc7+ Resigns.
Herbert William Trenchard
Michael Clapham (Ipswich, England) notes that a similar castling story was reported on page 156 of CHESS, 14 January 1937:
It will be appreciated if a reader can forward the original account in the Australasian Chess Review (edited by Purdy), since we lack the issue in question.
Mr Clapham also quotes the final paragraph of an article, ‘Fischer Dialogue’, by Ed Edmondson in the June 1970 Chess Life & Review, pages 317-319:
We consider this an excellent illustration of how all quoted material needs to be double-checked. Did Purdy really suggest in 1967 that the world championship qualification system should be set aside because of Fischer’s supposed supremacy over all possible challengers (with the consequence that Spassky would not have played his second title-match against Petrosian)?
Firstly, a news item on page 108 of Chess World, July-August 1967 gave the background to Fischer’s withdrawal from that year’s Interzonal in Sousse:
An article by Purdy entitled ‘The Fischer Problem’ on pages 137-139 of the September-October 1967 issue of Chess World contained the comments quoted in Chess Life & Review, but it will be observed that Edmondson did not respect their context:
Leonard Barden (London) asks whether it is known why Nottingham, 1936 had an odd number of players (15), a bye therefore being required in each round. (In passing, Mr Barden mentions that he met over the board nine of the 15 participants, and had some slight contact with another three.)
So far, we have found no suggestion that an even number of players was ever intended in the Nottingham tournament, or that byes were considered undesirable. At present, we can do no better than offer an overview of how the tournament came about, based on accounts in English-language chess magazines of the time. The reports consulted indicate that 15 was the only figure that the organizers ever envisaged.
Page 363 of the August 1935 BCM announced an appeal for funds to hold an International Chess Congress in Nottingham the following year, including a ‘Masters’ Invitation Tournament’ in which the world champion (Alekhine) and his two predecessors (Capablanca and Lasker) ‘have definitely agreed to compete’. The Council of the Nottingham University had offered College buildings as the venue, and the support of the Lord Mayor and Corporation of Nottingham had been secured. The estimated net cost of the Congress was £2,200. The President of the Nottinghamshire Chess Association, J.N. Derbyshire, had offered to pay half of the net total, to commemorate a Nottingham tournament in which he had participated in 1886. The British Chess Federation was called upon to respond in equal measure, and an appeal for funds was launched.
Page 405 of the September 1935 BCM stated that Sir George Thomas would give a simultaneous display at each chess club which subscribed at least two guineas to the fund, and the following month (page 466) the BCM reported that the response to the appeal had been generous and that a meeting of the Executive Committee of the British Chess Federation on 19 October would decide whether the full programme could go ahead. As reported on page 495 of the November 1935 BCM, a positive decision was taken by the Executive Committee, given that by the time of its meeting about £800 of the required £1,100 had been guaranteed or subscribed by donations.
An editorial on pages 161-162 of CHESS, 14 January 1936 stated that the participation of the new world champion, Euwe, was uncertain because of his professional duties, and that Flohr might also be absent, owing to military service commitments.
The following month (14 February 1936 issue, page 201) CHESS wrote:
Page 9 of the January 1936 American Chess Bulletin commented:
The 14 February 1936 issue of CHESS, pages 201-202, accused Capablanca of stirring up unnecessary difficulties by insisting that Euwe, though an amateur, should demand an appearance fee, but the claim was denied by Euwe himself. From pages 272-273 of the 14 March 1936 CHESS:
In a letter published on page 315 of the 14 April 1936 issue of CHESS P.S. Milner-Barry confirmed Euwe’s recollection of their conversation in Hastings in 1935.
Page 17 of the January 1936 BCM stated: ‘Before long now the remaining invitations to participate will be issued, the exact date fixed and the supplementary programme completed.’ The following month (pages 73-74), the BCM wrote:
No names were printed, but page 120 of the March 1936 BCM stated:
Details of the plans for other events in the Congress were given, and the report concluded (page 121): ‘The Congress will be held in Nottingham University College. There is to be no charge for admission to see the play.’
Page 223 of the May 1936 BCM reported:
On page 275 of the June 1936 BCM, the participants in the Masters’ tournament were announced as follows:
Lasker’s name was omitted, but it was included in the list on page 325 of the 14 May 1936 CHESS, which added some opinions on the selections made:
The British championship (Bournemouth, June 1936) was won by William Winter.
From page 365 of the August 1936 BCM:
Some observations on the choice of the British contingent appeared on pages 51-52 of Chess Pie No. 3, but details about the selection method for Nottingham, 1936 are sparse. Have any of the British Chess Federation’s archives, and particularly minutes of meetings in the mid-1930s, survived?
It is, for instance, unclear what role in the selection process was played by the fact that the Nottingham tournament clashed with the Munich International Team Tournament (in which both Eliskases and Keres participated). From page 362 of the 14 June 1936 CHESS:
This referred to a passage about the Munich event on page 129 of the May 1936 Deutsche Schachzeitung:
Chess Pie remarked (page 38) in connection with the world championship:
Below is a picture which will be added shortly to Photographs of Nottingham, 1936, from page 12 of the Aberdeen Press and Journal, 27 August 1936:
A cropped version was published opposite page 80 of Kings of Chess by William Winter (London, 1954).
A letter published on page 129 of the May 1951 Chess Review:
C.N. 5063 asked for early sightings of the famous saying ‘When I am White I win because I am White. When I am Black I win because I am Bogoljubow’. The earliest that we can propose is on page 14 of the March 1947 Chess Review, in an article by Reuben Fine:
The article was reproduced on pages 76-80 of Fine’s book The World’s a Chessboard (Philadelphia, 1948).
From page 136 of The Adventure of Chess by Edward Lasker (New York, 1950):
Some writers seem averse to mentioning Bogoljubow without relating the story, dressed up as the established truth. From page 252 of Capablanca move by move by Cyrus Lakdawala (London, 2012):
As Jean-Pierre Rhéaume (Montreal, Canada) notes, the remark was attributed to Chigorin in the extract from pages 137-139 of the September-October 1967 Chess World shown in C.N. 9645:
We can add an earlier instance, from an article by Paul Hugo Little about Berlin, 1897 on pages 229-230 of the November 1939 Chess Review:
On page 215 of William Steinitz, Chess Champion (Jefferson, 1993) Kurt Landsberger wrote, on the basis of nothing better than a second-hand 1961 source in German translated from Czech:
Landsberger added this casual footnote:
No names were supplied – not even Bogoljubow’s.
Impact of Genius by R.E. Fauber (Seattle, 1992) had only this about Chigorin (page 85):
We can point out corroboration in Tarrasch’s essay on Chigorin towards the end of his book Die moderne Schachpartie (various editions, and page numbers vary). From page 415 of the Leipzig, 1924 edition:
The famous saying was included in the Bogoljubow section of Fauber’s Impact of Genius (page 212):
It cannot be demonstrated whether Chigorin and/or Bogoljubow and/or any other master ‘once said’, or ‘often said’, or ‘used to say’, or ‘would say’, the phrase trustingly served up by so many chess writers. We can, though, offer a citation which not only stands as the earliest occurrence of the saying found so far but also involves both masters. It appeared on page 8 of Games Played in the World’s Championship Match by F.D. Yates and W. Winter (London, 1930), in a biographical note about Bogoljubow:
F.J. Marshall’s time for solving this problem: two minutes:
Mate in two
Our source is page 14 of the January 1944 Chess Review, which stated that ‘it took Grandmaster Frank J. Marshall just two minutes to find the key move ...’ We prefer the neutral wording at the start of the present item.
The problem dates from the thirteenth century (the Bonus Socius manuscript).
From page 30 of the April 1944 Chess Review, in the magazine’s coverage of the United States championship in New York:
On the subject of Chess in Advertisements, information is requested on a chess problem featured in advertising by Fry’s Cocoa over a century ago, as mentioned in the correspondence section of Thomas S. Johnston’s ‘Gems, Old & New’ column on page 151 of the February 1911 Chess Amateur:
In old chess magazines (English-language ones, in particular), readers’ pertinacity often reached a peak in any ‘discussion’ of the relative merits of the descriptive and algebraic notations. The descriptive notation has now departed (see, for example, Capablanca Goes Algebraic), and an awkward tournure may sometimes result. The opening sentence of The Fox Enigma refers to ‘positions in which a player moved his queen to KKt6 (i.e. g6 or g3)’.
The text of C.N. 71 (‘The leisurely fianchetto’) provides another example:
In C.N. 98 W.H. Cozens (Ilminster, England) remarked on the comparative merits of the two notations in such an instance:
Mr Cozens concluded:
Regarding possible difficulties with the descriptive notation, below is a position on page 17 of Test Tube Chess by A.J. Roycroft (London, 1972):
From page 86 of CHESS, January 1940:
Robert John McCrary (Columbia, SC, USA) writes regarding The Value of the Chess Pieces:
We note the following on page 25 of Easy Guide to the Game of Chess by Charles Check (London, 1818):
Easy Guide to the Game of Chess by Charles Check (London, 1818) used the algebraic notation, as explained on pages 7-8:
A footnote on page 8 began:
The book was not well regarded by Howard Staunton, who wrote on page 323 of the Illustrated London News, 22 May 1847:
We lack information about Charles Check, notwithstanding an enquiry by H. Maxwell Prideaux on pages 324-325 of the November 1918 BCM:
Two further photographs published in the year Frank J. Marshall died:
Chess Review, January 1944, page 4
Chess Review, March 1944, page 5
C.N. 9582 showed how Dawid Janowsky was derided on page 95 of B.J. Horton’s Dictionary of Modern Chess (New York, 1959). Another example, anchored in tittle-tattle, comes from pages 99-100 of The World’s Great Chess Games by Reuben Fine (New York, 1951):
The famous game published by Fine was against ‘Schallop’ (sic) at Nuremberg, 1896.
Dawid Janowsky (American Chess Bulletin, February 1927, page 28)
However often Janowsky may or may not have been called ‘Jan’ orally, it is difficult to find the nickname in print during his lifetime. One instance occurs in G.C. Reichhelm’s annotations to the 16th match-game between Janowsky and Marshall, Paris, 4 March 1905, as published on pages 90-91 of volume two of Halpern’s Chess Symposium (New York, 1905). The note after 43...e5 was: ‘In the vain hope that “Jan” would take at once.’
In passing, we mention a discrepancy over the game’s conclusion.
Reichhelm gave ‘48 PxP RxP (An “oversight”.) RxR wins’, whereas some sources state that Marshall resigned after White’s 48th move. Those sources include Marshall’s own brief coverage of the game on pages 36-37 of a booklet on the match (published in London in 1905 with his annotations from the Manchester Guardian). Two noteworthy publications which presented the conclusion as 48 fxe5 Rxc6 49 Rxc6 Resigns were pages 84-86 of La Stratégie, 17 March 1905 (notes by Alapin) and, as shown below, pages 106-107 of the April 1905 Deutsche Schachzeitung (notes by Tarrasch from the Berliner Lokal-Anzeiger):
Tarrasch gave similar annotations in Die Moderne Schachpartie (various editions, with different page numbers).
Moreover, according to the range of contemporary publications consulted, Black’s 47th move was ...Rc4, and not ...Rc5 as indicated by one or two unreliable databases.
Concerning ‘the two Jans’, a number of reference works (see, for instance, the entries on Janowsky in the Dictionnaire des échecs, the hardback edition of Golombek’s Encyclopedia of Chess and the 1984 edition of The Oxford Companion to Chess) affirm that this was a common term in the United States to describe a bishop pair. An extract from page 206 of the Dictionnaire des échecs by F. Le Lionnais and E. Maget (Paris, 1967):
We have yet to trace the term in chess literature during Janowsky’s lifetime.
After presenting some victories by Janowsky, C.N. 351 commented:
Further to the material in Chessplayer Shot Dead in Hastings, another consultation game involving F.W. Womersley and Janowsky, against Gunsberg and Locock, was published on page 9 of the Pall Mall Gazette of 29 January 1898 (chess column by Gunsberg) and on pages 112-114 of the March 1898 BCM (annotations by Janowsky):
1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 Nf6 4 O-O Nxe4 5 d4 Be7 6 Qe2 Nd6 7 Bxc6 bxc6 8 dxe5 Nb7 9 b3 O-O 10 Bb2 Re8 11 Qc4 Nc5 12 Rd1 d5 13 Qf4 Ne6 14 Qd2 Bb7 15 c4 Qd7 16 Nc3 Rad8 17 Ne2 Qc8 18 Qc2 Rd7 19 Nfd4 c5 20 Nxe6 fxe6 21 cxd5 exd5 22 Rd3 Bf8 23 Rh3 h6 24 Nf4 Rf7 25 Nd3 Qf5 26 Rf3 Qg6 27 Rg3 Qh7 28 Rc1 d4 29 Qc4 Qf5 30 f3 Bd5 31 Qxd5 Qxd3 32 f4 Qd2 33 Ba3
33...c4 34 e6 Rxf4 35 e7+ Kh7 36 exf8(N)+ Rfxf8 37 Rxg7+ Kxg7 38 Bxf8+ Rxf8 39 Qe5+ Kg6 40 Qg3+ Qg5 41 Qxg5+ hxg5 42 Rxc4
42...Rd8 43 Kf2 Rd7 44 Ke2 Kf5 45 Kd3 Ke5 46 g3 Rh7 47 Rc5+ Kd6 48 Rc2 Kd5 49 b4 g4 50 a4 c6 51 Rc4 Rxh2 52 Rxd4+ Ke5 53 Rxg4 Kd6 54 a5 Rh1 55 Rg6+ Kd5 56 Rg5+ Kd6 57 Rg7 Rg1 58 g4 Rd1+ 59 Ke4 Re1+ 60 Kf5 Re5+ 61 Kf6 Rb5 62 Rxa7 Rxb4 63 g5 Rf4+ 64 Kg7 c5 65 Rf7 Ra4 66 a6 c4 67 Kf8 c3 68 Rf2 Ke5 Drawn.
The game was played in Hastings on 27-28 January 1898. On 24 January Janowsky and Womersley had faced each other in the former’s 29-board simultaneous exhibition. Below is the game as published on page 7 of the Standard, 1 February 1898:
Black’s initials T.W. were amended to F.W. when the game was given on, for instance, page 2 of the 19 February 1898 edition of the Newcastle Courant.
1 d4 d5 2 c4 Nf6 3 Nc3 e6 4 Bg5 Nbd7 5 e3 b6 6 Nf3 Bd6 7 Rc1 Bb7 8 cxd5 exd5 9 Bd3 c6 10 Bb1 Rc8 11 O-O h6 12 Bh4 Rc7 13 e4 dxe4 14 Nxe4 Bf4 15 Rc3 O-O 16 Qd3 g6 17 g3 Bg5 18 Nfxg5 hxg5 19 Bxg5 Kg7
20 d5 cxd5 21 Nxf6 Rxc3 22 Qxc3 Nxf6 23 Qe5 Bc6 24 Rc1 Re8 25 Bxf6+ Qxf6 26 Qxf6+ Kxf6 27 Rxc6+ Resigns.
Dan Scoones (Coquitlam, BC, Canada) draws attention to a set of postage stamps:
Our correspondent notes that ‘Boris Spassky’ is Vladek Sheybal, who played the role of Kronsteen in the 1963 film From Russia with Love.
From page 58 of NY Chess Since 1972 by Peter Julius Sloan (New York, 2012):
Alain Pallier (Lauris, France) refers us to the collection of Marcel Lamare (1856-1937), the subject of an article by our correspondent on pages 870-871 of issue 121 (July 1996) of EG. He has also forwarded a copy of the sheet on which Lamare recorded the composition by H.F.L. Meyer:
We are grateful to the Cleveland Public Library for the two 1880 items listed by Lamare:
American Chess Journal, July 1880, page 86
Nuova rivista degli scacchi, September-October 1880, page 256
Below is the last publication mentioned by Lamare, from page 238 of the May 1915 Chess Amateur (in T.R. Dawson’s ‘Endings’ column):
From page 280 of the June 1915 Chess Amateur:
The frontispiece to the July 1880 issue of the American Chess Journal:
Copyright: Edward Winter. All rights reserved.