British Chess Championship Daily Reports

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Geoff Chandler
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby Geoff Chandler » Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:10 pm

Hi Chris,

"Not Only Chess (1974) sounds interesting. Can anyone recommend it?"

I cannot say I've seen it.

I wonder if he starts off each chapter with a quote from a Len Deighton book.

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JustinHorton
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby JustinHorton » Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:31 pm

I think I've got Not Only Chess, but it's out of reach for a few days. Essays, short piece, not all of them (hence the title) about chess, as I recall.
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Matt Mackenzie
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby Matt Mackenzie » Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:10 pm

Abrahams was a pretty good writer, though he may seem a bit dated in some respects to modern eyes.
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby Roger de Coverly » Wed Aug 09, 2017 11:04 pm

Matt Mackenzie wrote:Abrahams was a pretty good writer, though he may seem a bit dated in some respects to modern eyes.


Was he was also a contributor to the BBC's chess radio programme of the early 60s, later captured in book form as "Chess Treasury of the Air"?

(edit)of the Air (/edit)
Last edited by Roger de Coverly on Thu Aug 10, 2017 7:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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JustinHorton
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby JustinHorton » Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:31 am

I think so but you have the title a little wrong.
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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby Christopher Kreuzer » Thu Aug 10, 2017 7:46 am

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Matt Mackenzie wrote:Abrahams was a pretty good writer, though he may seem a bit dated in some respects to modern eyes.


Was he was also a contributor to the BBC's chess radio programme of the early 60s, later captured in book form as "Chess Treasury of the Air"?

(edit)of the Air (/edit)


Of the items published in that book, one is an abridged ("greatly shortened") version (only 3 pages) of a broadcast of a talk by Abrahams, published in the book under the title: 'Sportsmanship and Gamesmanship in Chess'.

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JustinHorton
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby JustinHorton » Sun Aug 13, 2017 9:51 am

JustinHorton wrote:That would be really interesting. Not sure if I've got that Abrahams book (I can look when I get home at the weekend).


(I don't - I have Test Your Chess and The Pan Book of Chess, but not Teach Yourself Chess.)
Last edited by JustinHorton on Sun Aug 13, 2017 2:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Gerard Killoran
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby Gerard Killoran » Sun Aug 13, 2017 12:36 pm

You can use Google Books to search inside Not Only Chess

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=EjhQAQAAIAAJ&dq=

I can't find any of the chapter headings cited

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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby JustinHorton » Sun Aug 13, 2017 1:59 pm

It couldn't be that book anyway as it would have to predate Funeral In Berlin.
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JustinHorton
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby JustinHorton » Sun Aug 13, 2017 2:03 pm

Teach Yourself Chess is plausible, but you'd need an actual copy as the Google Books version doesn't appear to be searchable.

Also note that the original (see link in post above) is written in occasionally odd English. This led me to believe that it was likely a translation of some kind, but it could also be that Deighton fiddled about with the English deliberately to make it look like that.
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Michael Farthing
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby Michael Farthing » Sun Aug 13, 2017 3:53 pm

Geoff Chandler wrote:It's the pawns being called 'children' by the Tibetans. Find that and we have it.



http://history.chess.free.fr/chandraki.htm (Chandraki being a chess-like game of Tibet) has this commet:

The proposed names of the pieces and their meanings are the following
(source: H.J.R.Murray, "A history of Chess", Oxford, 1913.):

Code: Select all

Name   meaning  equivalent
Bu       Child        Pawn

Geoff Chandler
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby Geoff Chandler » Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:22 pm

Thanks Michael,

I will one way or another find out what book it was

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John Clarke
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby John Clarke » Thu Aug 17, 2017 6:56 am

Christopher Kreuzer wrote:Of the items published in that book, one is an abridged ("greatly shortened") version (only 3 pages) of a broadcast of a talk by Abrahams, published in the book under the title: 'Sportsmanship and Gamesmanship in Chess'.

If I'm not mistaken, the full-length version of that radio item was reprinted in Not Only Chess. One other item in that book I can clearly recall was a Russian short story called "From Passover To Tabernacles", only loosely related to chess. The blurb on the dust-jacket contained some characteristic sentences by the author that didn't appear in the text [my paraphrases in brackets]:

"In the early 1920s I was Bobby Fischer, plus an enormous intellectual endowment in [several fields] other than chess".
"Polyglottery, {plus two or three other preoccupations] permitted my decline right down to master strength."

Chess Treasury Of The Air also included tributes by Abrahams to Rubinstein and Levenfish (the former, strangely, without any illustrative game), as well as his own favourite game, the one against Spencer that he claims Emanuel Lasker thought so much of. (Not however his worst error - the significance of which I'll leave to to others to judge.) Incidentally, the editors of CTOTA didn't allow him his usual idiosyncrasy of always spelling "Chess" (and the names of the pieces) with a capital initial.

The Pan Book Of Chess was also published in hardback form. My local library had a copy which I borrowed on several occasions c1966.

I heard Abrahams on the BBC chess programme a time or two, and thought he had a rather odd-sounding voice - but I can't really recall now in what that oddness consisted, if you see what I mean.
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby John Collins » Thu Aug 17, 2017 11:38 am

Re Gerald Abrahams,
I played him once (draw) and he did indeed have a distinctive voice. This was probably due to his courtroom manner - he was a barrister - and his Liverpool Jewish background. He did not suffer from a lack of confidence, and his offer of a draw seemed as if he was bestowing a great gift on me.
John Collins

Geoff Chandler
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Re: British Chess Championship Daily Reports

Postby Geoff Chandler » Thu Aug 17, 2017 11:56 am

Hi,

A full list of the phases Len Deighton uses and more background is is here.

http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... ce-by.html

They include:

Skilful use of knights is the mark of the professional player.

In certain circumstances pawns can be converted into the most powerful unit on the board.

Zugzwang: to move a chess piece under duress.

Every piece has its mode of attack but only a pawn will attack en passant. Similarly only a pawn can be captured in this manner.

Mate: a word from Old French meaning to overpower or overcome.

Corridor mate: when a king can only move along an expected route, he can be trapped by closing the corridor.

Development for its own sake is insufficient. There must be a keen purpose in every move.

Players who relish violence, aggression and movement often depend upon the Spanish Game.

Two hostile bishops can be used to block the advance of passed pawns since between them they control access to all squares of both colours.

In Burma and Japan a general is the piece we call a queen, but in China and Korea a general is the piece we call a king.

The Exchange: when a player sacrifices something for an opponent's piece of lesser value he is said to be 'the exchange down'.

Unless one is a master player the Queen's Gambit — when a pawn is offered for sacrifice — is best declined.

The power of a queen often encourages its use single-handed. But an unsupported queen is in a dangerous position against skilfully used pawns.

Originally the piece we now call a queen was a counsellor or government adviser.


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