The Chess Congress of 1862. A Collection of the Games Played, and a Selection of the Problems sent in for Competition

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Author: Lowenthal, Johann Jacob (1810-1876) [editor]

Year: 1864

Publisher: Henry G Bohn

Place: London


[vii ad]+xcvi+536+[vi ad] pages with front and back leaves of ads being the paste-downs with frontispiece, diagrams, tables and indices. Small octavo (7 1/4" x 5 1/4") bound in original red cloth with decorative blind stamped cover and spine with gilt lettering to spine. An account of the proceedings and a "Memoir of the British Chess Association" by G W Medley. (Bohn's Scientific Library)(Betts: 25-4) First edition.

Published in the United States by Lippincott (Philadelphia) and Scribner (New York), but dates not ascertained. The "memoir" contains reports of the past meetings of the British Chess Association, the arrangements for the 1862 congress, a general account of the tournament. There follow the 177 games with brief notes, and 23 other games, including consultation games and a selection from the problem tourney, incorporating a number of self-mates and end-game studies.

The tournament of 1862 had been promoted by the British Chess Association, whose history was as follows: Before modern traveling facilities were invented, it had been felt that country clubs were too much isolated. The members played with the same opponents year in and year out; they opted the style and peculiarities of their one best player; enjoyed few opportunities of measuring themselves with those outside their immediate circle, and scarcely knew what first-class play really was. This did not suit the views of the enthusiasts, and in 1840 a number of zealous Yorkshire players conceived the idea of mustering a number of clubs for what seemed to their minds a grand carnival - a whole day's play. Out of this was developed the Yorkshire Chess Association, and from it in due time the British Chess Association. The meeting of 1862 was the eight held under its auspices, the seventh having assembled at Bristol a year before. The minimum rate of play was slow, twenty moves in two hours, but yet it was enacted that the game shall be played out at a sitting. Time was measured by sand-glasses. The chess clock, which was first suggested by Blackburne, had not yet come into existence. For the first time, at this tournament, every player played at least one game with each competitor.


Spine ends professionally repaired by Octavaye Studios, lightly soiled, corners gently soiled, mostly unread, only a few pages crudely opened else a very nice copy of a scarce tournament item.