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Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 6:17 pm
by John Townsend
Yes, very good, Gerard. The author claimed to identify himself in the introduction, which is in Latin verse, but the solution has caused difficulty. Further details on request, if anyone wants a shot!

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 11:24 pm
by MJMcCready
Gerard Killoran wrote:
Mon Jan 01, 2018 10:43 am
MJMcCready wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 12:16 pm
Who came up with this oddity? It's mate in 21 and not too hard.
Thomas Rayner Dawson
It was indeed.

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:50 pm
by Gerard Killoran
Which year was this written?
Is chess on the wane? It would seem so from the fact that the London Chess Club, after an existence of sixty-three years, has just been dissolved. Perhaps we are too fast now-a-days for so slow, thoughtful, and absorbing a game. Whether chess is or is not declining, it is certain that billiards is becoming every day a more popular game. The marvellous play of the present champion (who lately made 512 in a break, the largest break on record) has drawn attention to the game, and this may partly account for its increasing popularity.

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:19 pm
by John Townsend
The London Chess Club packed up in 1870, so I expect that's the answer.

We are answering each other's questions, Gerard!

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Thu Jan 04, 2018 9:06 pm
by Gerard Killoran
Chess has been on the wane for nearly 150 years!

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 12:10 am
by NickFaulks
Gerard Killoran wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:50 pm
The marvellous play of the present champion (who lately made 512 in a break, the largest break on record) has drawn attention to the game, and this may partly account for its increasing popularity.
Whatever you think of the current state of elite chess, it must be better than watching someone making a 512 break at billiards.

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 10:21 am
by MJMcCready
You think so? At least in billiards they make a genuine effort to try and win rather than play out a dull draw for hours on end.

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 11:47 am
by John Townsend
Gerard's quotation referred to the dissolution of the London Chess Club after 63 years. The legendary foundation year was 1807, and I expect that is about right, but can it be corroborated from any contemporary evidence? (I know of at least one source from the 1820s which refers to 1807.)

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 12:16 pm
by Kevin Thurlow
"Whatever you think of the current state of elite chess, it must be better than watching someone making a 512 break at billiards."

Later breaks got over 4000, before they changed the rules! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bwKXxmBssPc shows why at about the 3-minute mark.

Gerard and John are very knowledgeable...

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2018 12:55 pm
by MJMcCready
Which well-known author came up with this puzzle in the 1930s.
555.png
555.png (9.6 KiB) Viewed 1194 times
Of the many legal moves that White might just have made, only one can be revised to yield an immediate mate. Can you find it?

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2018 1:28 pm
by IM Jack Rudd
d7xNc8=R can be revised to d7xRe8=N.

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2018 1:43 pm
by NickFaulks
MJMcCready wrote:
Sat Jan 06, 2018 12:55 pm
Which well-known author came up with this puzzle in the 1930s.
Vladimir Nabokov?

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2018 3:35 pm
by Gerard Killoran
IM Jack Rudd wrote:
Sat Jan 06, 2018 1:28 pm
d7xNc8=R can be revised to d7xRe8=N.
Why pawn on d7 and not b7?

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2018 3:47 pm
by MJMcCready
NickFaulks wrote:
Sat Jan 06, 2018 1:43 pm
MJMcCready wrote:
Sat Jan 06, 2018 12:55 pm
Which well-known author came up with this puzzle in the 1930s.
Vladimir Nabokov?
Yes that's correct.

Re: Chess history trivia

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2018 7:14 pm
by IM Jack Rudd
Gerard Killoran wrote:
Sat Jan 06, 2018 3:35 pm
IM Jack Rudd wrote:
Sat Jan 06, 2018 1:28 pm
d7xNc8=R can be revised to d7xRe8=N.
Why pawn on d7 and not b7?
Because it needs to be able to capture the e8 rook.