This Page is dedicated to the Memory of Ken Whyld
"Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much."
Ken Whyld, one of the most eminent and worldwide known chess historians and authors, is no longer with us. Most of our group only met him once and came to know him as a kind elder gentleman, who attended our first meeting in November 2002 and livened up the discussion about our bibliography project. The photo below was taken on that event.
We learn quite a lot about Ken Whyld from his (very worth reading) interview he gave Sarah Hurst ("A Walk on the Whyld Side", CHESS XI 1998; reprinted in S. Hurst, Curse of Kirsan, Milford 2002); for example, that at 13 or 14 the highly gifted boy read Einstein's Theory of Relativity, and one year later he dealt with Lenin and Freud. Later on he earned the nickname "The Omniscient One", due to his encyclopaedic knowledge of chess history.
The high respect which Ken Whyld enjoyed in the chess world cannot only be attributed to his immense knowledge, but largely to his pleasant co-operative behaviour. His willingness to share his knowledge with others at any time and to answer precisely each enquiry was widely known and made him many friends. Having also a fine sense of humour, Ken Whyld, in his personality as a whole, was an absolutely exceptional person.
May be, that Ken Whyld's first marriages have suffered from his chess enthusiasm, a fate he probably shared with many other chess fans. He had married his great love for many years, Pat Frankish, only recently in April 2002. It is very sad to hear that they could spend only 15 months together at their home in the village of Kirton Lindsey (near Caistor).
You may find further photos of Ken Whyld at the Website of the Lasker Society .
Many obituaries and tributes appeared after Ken Whyld's death, online and in traditional chess magazines, and his large number of publications was recalled. We will select here only the most prominent ones and add a separate list of all his books.
First of all, the outstanding work he created together with co-author and long-time friend David Hooper, The Oxford Companion to Chess. Certainly this wonderful book will offer help and advice to further generations of chess players and researchers, "a masterpiece representing a landmark in the literature of our game", as Edward Winter, another great chess historian, commented. For many of us this gem of an encyclopaedia would be the favourite for the so-called "desert island book".
Secondly, his The Collected Games of Emanuel Lasker, is the result of decades of games collecting. Including 1,390 games and 32 compositions (endgames, problems) of the former WM, it remains the most reliable source on the subject.
Third, his volume Chess Columns: A List, which can be seen as a successor to Gaige's Chess Personalia, is the attempt to give a complete alphabetical list of all chess columns which were ever published in serials and newspapers. Surely not a book to read through, it is a reference book of supreme importance and a must for each serious chess library.
Ken Whyld will live on not only in his books, but also in the name of our Association, which has itself set the task of honouring his memory. As a first step we will support the edition of a reprint of Ken Whyld's Chess Reader, whose publication we are planning for this year's November (2003).
- Shakespeare & Co (pdf file, 2.4 MB)
Article by Ken Whyld from CHESS January 1997, p. 50-53
(added 06/03/2009, by kind permission of Jimmy Adams)
- Tony Gillam, Ken Whyld: An Appreciation (CHESS 1/2004)
- Kurt Landsberger, A Tribute to Ken Whyld
- Chris Ravilious, Working with Ken
- Jurgen Stigter, Ken Whyld, 6 March 1926 - 11 July 2003
(Board Game Studies 6, 2003, p 99-101)
- Neil Brennen, A Tribute to Ken Whyld:
Three New Lasker Games
- Michael Ehn u. Ernst Strouhal,
Kleine Erinnerung an Ken Whyld (1926-2003)
(Schachkalender 2004, S. 30-33;
zuvor von Prof. Ernst Strouhal am 18.10.2003 beim VII. Symposium
der Initiativgruppe Königstein in Berlin vorgetragen)
- A further tribute by Alessandro Sanvito is included
in his article Ricordo di tre amici della CCI.
- After all we meet an entry on Ken Whyld
in WIKIPEDIA - The Free Encyclopedia.
- An early short notice on Ken Whyld appeared in
CHESS (Jan. 1950, p.83) when he was 23,
see P.C.C. Personalities (No.11).
Sarah Hurst: A Walk on the Whyld Side
The original interview with Ken Whyld was published in CHESS vol. 63, no. 8, November 1998, p. 33-38
(please click on the small picture)
Edward Winter gives a correction in the following issue (CHESS XII 1998, p. 44): JUST A TINGE STRONGER
On the Fate of the Ken Whyld library
In December 2003 we received the following press release from our member Ulrich Schädler:
Ken Whyld's Library Saved
The Swiss Museum of Games at La Tour-de-Peilz (Switzerland) is pleased to communicate that Ken Whyld's library of chess books will continue to exist in its entirety. Instead of splitting up and dispersing Ken Whyld's legacy by selling the books at auction, the museum, the solicitors, and the heirs have agreed and signed a contract upon the transfer of the complete library to the museum. The museum will not only create a catalogue, it will also make efforts to make the library accessible to the public. Under the heading « The Ken Whyld collection of chess literature » it will be part of the museum's specialized library. Situated in a castle at the shore of Lake Geneva the only museum dedicated to 5000 years of culture history of games in the world will therefore house one of the rare public libraries for chess research in Europe.
Swiss Museum of Games
In the meantime the collection has been housed in a nice library room, the books have been put on the shelves and catalogued by chess historian Richard Forster.
The collection's strong points are the sections on early history, biographies, magazines, tournaments, endgames and bibliography.
In the course of our general meeting in La Tour-de-Peilz (May 2006) the participants were given a preview of the library (see our photo report) whose official opening took place only a little later - end of June - in the presence of Ken Whyld’s son Martin Whyld. As already stated the KWA is willing to publish a printed catalogue of the Ken Whyld collection.
Books and booklets
(written / edited / revised)
by Ken Whyld
Betts: Douglas A. Betts, An Annotated Bibliography of Works Published in the English Language 1850-1968; Boston, Mass. 1974
Kiel: H. Lüders/C. Möhle, Kieler Schachkatalog; Kiel / Göttingen 2000
LN: Bibliotheca van der Linde-Niemeijeriana; facsimile ed., Rosmalen 1988
LNa: K.W. Kruijswijk, Bibliotheca Van der Linde-Niemeijeriana aucta et de novo descripta Volume I. Chess: Bibliography and History; The Hague 1974
Lusis: Andy Lusis, CHESS, An annotated bibliography 1969-1988; London/New York 1991
Match Bronstein v. Boleslavski, Moscow 1950.
[LN 5164; Betts 27-50]
World Championship Candidates Tournament Neuhausen/Zürich 1953 [David Hooper and Ken Whyld].
Reissued in 1968 by The Chess Player (No. 77).
International chess tournament at Bad Nauheim, Stuttgart and Garmisch-Partenkirchen, July 1937.
Whyld Limited Editions No. 1. Wollaton, 1953. 150 copies.
[LN 5557; Betts 25-129]
Budapest International Masters Tournament 1921 [printed and published by E.G.R. Cordingley and K. Whyld].
Cordingley Limited Edition Tournament Books.
London/Wollaton, 1953.- 24 pp.
Chess Books and magazines.Offered by Ken Whyld.
List no 7. (Part I: the E.G.R. Cordingley library)
Nottingham, 1954. –  pp; 1264 items
[LNa 1269; LN 161a]
International chess tournament at Meran, December 1926.
Whyld Limited Editions No. 2. Wollaton, 1954.- IV, 25 pp.
[LN 5398; Betts 25-79]
Commonwealth Tournament Oxford 1951.
Whyld Limited Editions No. 3.
Nottingham, 195x. 125 copies.
International Chess Tournament Amsterdam 1936 [annotated by Reuben Fine]. Reprint of 1st edition London 1937 (= Cordingley Limited Editions No. 12).
Nottingham, 1955. 50 copies.
[Betts 25-117; LN 5520]
The A.C. White Christmas books, by D. J. Morgan, and the Overbrook series of A. C. White problem books, by 'Guynebans'.
Reprinted from two issues of Chess Reader, published by Ken Whyld. Nottingham, 1956. –  pp.
(Reprinted) Alain White's chess problem books. A check list of the Christmas and Overbrook series.
Caistor, 1997; limited edition of 66 copies. - 16 pp; stapled.
Kuibyshev 1942. Whyld Limited Editions No. 4. 200 copies.
Warsaw 1947. Whyld Limited Editions No. 5. 200 copies.
Salzburg 1942. Whyld Limited Editions No. 6. 200 copies.
Emanuel Lasker, chess champion.Volume 1 [ed. by J(ames) Gilchrist]; 1st edition. Nottingham, 1956 [publ. by Ken Whyld];  pp. Wire spiral binding.
(Reprinted) Nottingham, without year . - Without pagination  pp. No. 55 in The Chess Player Series [publ. by Tony Gillam and Ken Whyld]
Emanuel Lasker, chess champion. Volume 2 [ed. by J(ames) Gilchrist]; 1st edition. Nottingham, 1958 [publ. by Ken Whyld];  pp. Wire spiral binding.
(Reprinted) Nottingham, Sept. 1968. - Without pagination  pp. No. 71 (on front cover) or 72 (title page inside) in The Chess Player Series [publ. by Tony Gillam and Ken Whyld]
Emanuel Lasker, Vol. 3.
Nottingham, 1976. – 104 pp.
[Lusis 1322; Kiel 5575]
Discovering chess [R. C. Bell].
2nd ed. revised by Ken Whyld.
Aylesbury, 1979. – 56 pp; pbk.
Fake Automata in Chess: A Bibliography.
Caistor, 1978. –  pp.
Limited edition of 63 copies.
Caistor, 198x?. –  pp; pbk.
Limited edition of 60 copies (+ 3 working copies)
Caistor, 1994. – 80 pp; pbk.
Limited edition of 105 copies.
Bibliography of biographical sketches by A. C. White in (London) Times weekly edition.
Compiled by Ken Whyld (?); 198x?
Leipzig 1894 [Dr. S. Tarrasch].
(edited by Ken Whyld)
Nottingham, 1982. – 64 pp; pbk.
The Oxford Companion to Chess [David Hooper and Ken Whyld].
Oxford, 1984. – 407 pp.
[Lusis 75; Kiel 620]
Oxford, 1987. – pbk.
Reprinted: 1988 (with corrections)
[Lusis 75.1; Kiel 621]
2nd edition. Oxford, 1992. – 483 pp.
The Oxford Companion to Chess. Index [David Hooper and Ken Whyld].
1. – Caistor 1988. 22,  pp. Books, games, compositions. [Lusis 76.1]
2. – Caistor 1988. 36 pp. Personal names. [Lusis 76.2]
Deaths reported in Deutsche Schachzeitung: 1846-1955 (vol. 1-104).
Caistor, 1986. – 25 pp.
(Guinness) Chess: The Records.
Enfield, 1986. – 176 pp; pbk.
[Lusis 1400; Kiel 1209]
Chess: biographical index of general works.
Caistor, 1988. – 76 pp; pbk.
The First Steinitz – Hoffer Ink War.
Caistor, June 1989.
Learn Chess in a Weekend.
London, 1993. – 96 pp.
[Translations into: Czech; Danish (1994); Dutch (1994, 1997); German ("Schach lernen": 1995, 1998); Norwegian (1995); Polish (1999)]
First Chess Olympiad London 1927.
Caistor, 1993. - 80 pp; stapled.
2nd edition. Nottingham, 2001. - 80 pp; stapled.
Murray, Harold J. R. - A History of Chess. Corrections and additions mostly by the author.
Caistor, 1994. – 59 pp.
Lucena, the 150 problems from the earliest surviving printed chess book.
Private limited edition, Caistor 1995.
The history of checkers from its earliest known date - its evolution and growth [Wm. Shelley Branch]. Cheltenham, England. Specially written for Pittsburg Leader. Oct. 8, 1911 - April 14, 1912.
(Reprinted by Ken Whyld) Caistor, May 19, 1997.
The Collected Games of Emanuel Lasker.
Nottingham, 1998. – 229 pp.
Il dilettevole e givdizioso givoco de scacchi: manoscritto inedito del XVIII secolo / edizione critica in italiano e in inglese a cura di Alessandro Sanvito e Kenneth Whyld; [prefazione, Alice N. Loranth] = unpublished manuscript of XVIIIth century / Italian and English edition by Alessandro Sanvito and Kenneth Whyld; [pref., Alice N. Loranth]. Milano: S. Bonnard, 1998. Two-volume boxed set in limited edition of 749 numbered copies.
Chess Columns. A list.
Olomouc, 2002. – 587 pp.
Alekhine - Nazi Articles.
1st ed., Caistor, 1986. -  pp.
2nd ed., Caistor, 1992.
3rd ed., Olomouc, 2002. – 44 pp.
Chess Texts in the English Language, printed before 1850: An annotated bibliography [Ken Whyld and Chris Ravilious].
Olomouc, 2003. – 189 pp.
[An "original listing of some 400 items" was "circulated by KW to a few friends in 1999"]
English Tournaments 1857-1866.
Nottingham, 2003. – 54 pp; stapled.
Periodicals and series
The Chess Students Quarterly.
proprietor and publ.: E.G.R. Cordingley, (no. 12/13ff.:) proprietor: Cordingley, ed.: Ken Whyld. – London
vol. 1 - vol. 6 (no. 1-17) Nov. 1946 - March 1952.
[Betts 7-108; Kiel 83]
The March 1951 issue of "CSQ" probably was the first editorial work of just 25-year-old Ken Whyld, we are pleased to present 2 pages of this number here.
Nottingham, Spring 1955 – Christmas 1963 (vols. 1-5). Stencilled quarterly magazine.
The Chess Reader (vol. 6, nos. 1/2; 3/4)
Nottingham 1965; Febr. 1966
[LNa 1270; Betts 1-52]
Quotes and Queries.
BCM-Column Oct. 1978 – Sept. 2003
The "Whyld Christmas Series"
(privately circulated as a Christmas and New Year gift)
The Story of Chess.
1985. - 24 pp.
Chess Biographical Index of General Works.
1986. - 76 pp.
Blackburne’s matches in 1887.
Caistor, 1988. – 64 pp.
Letters on the History and Literature of Chess by B. S. [P.].
Caistor, 1989. - 52 pp.
[Reprint from The Chess Player 4.1853]
Development of the Chess Problem by J.W. Allen.
Caistor, 1990. - 24 pp, 1 folded leaf.
Reprint of an essay by J.W. Allen which appeared in BCM, April 1903 to March 1904.
The Beginnings of Modern Chess.
Caistor, Nov. 1991. - 20 pp.
[Correspondence chess match London Chess Club – Vienna Chess Club 1872]
The chess board.
Caistor, Nov. 1992. - 40 pp. [On chess diagrams]
Café de la Régence.
Caistor, 1993. - 12 pp.
The Worst Book in the World.
Caistor, 1994. - 32 pp.
[Critical edition of: B. Scriven, 100 chess problems; London 1941]
A la recherche du temps perdu.
Caistor, Oct. 1995. - 16 pp.
[Troitsky's Retrograde Analysis Compositions]
Lasker the Composer.
Caistor, 1996. - 16 pp.
According to Hoyle.
Caistor, Oct. 1997. - 12 pp.
[Text of (Hoyle) in An easy introduction to the game of chess (1808)]
Caistor, Oct. 1998. - 16 pp.
Chess Texts in the English Language, printed earlier than 1850.
Caistor, Oct. 1999. - 12 pp.
Poems relating to 'The Turk'.
2000. - 8 pp.
[Address to the Automaton Chess Player (by Hannah Flagg Gould);
Reply (by Maelzel)]
The meeting of the British Chess Association at Cambridge [28.8.1860 - 1.9.1860].
Kirton Lindsey, 2001. - 16 pp.
Chess in Literature.
Yuletide Greetings 2002 and Best Wishes for the New Year 2003
Kirton Lindsey, 2002. - 9 pp.