by Siegfried Schönle [Original article in German is here. Translation by DeepL]
Das Schach hat wie die Liebe, wie die Musik die Fähigkeit, den Menschen glücklich zu machen.
[Chess, like love, like music, has the ability to make people happy.]
Source: Dr. Tarrasch, Das Schachspiel. Systematisches Lehrbuch für Anfänger und Geübte, Berlin, 1st ed. 1931 : Deutsche Buch-Gemeinschaft, Preface p. 4.
Für das Schach ist wie für die Liebe ein Partner unentbehrlich.
[For chess, as for love, a partner is indispensable.]
Source: Stefan Zweig (writer); https://www.schachbund.de/zitatensammlung.html
Whether the reader of Matthias Aumüller's treatise Das Schachspiel in der europäischen Literatur will be "happy" or happier remains to be seen. But he certainly learns a wealth of knowledge and background - Europe-wide - to the texts presented, which are "primarily ... about love and its connection to chess" (p.9).
The book, which is highly recommended here, contains detailed reflections on five great chess poems
- Fenollar, de Castellvi, Vinyoles - Scachs d’ Amor (nach 1470)
- Vida - Scacchia ludus (1527)
- Kochanowsky – Szachy (ca 1564)
- Marino – L‘ Adone (1623)
- Jones – Caissa (1763/1772)
Here is the support for the last presentation at the CH&LS general meeting in Belfort on Saturday 2 September.
Henri Serruys (Belgium) presented the very special January 1888 issue of the BCM (British Chess Magazine).
Henri pointed out a curious feature of the January 1888 issue of BCM.
In fact, this issue of BCM was printed twice with slightly different layouts, by two different printers.
The CH&LS General Meeting concluded with two presentations of collectors' books.
The first was by Jurgen Stigter (Netherlands) and the Academy of Games.
A fascinating day at the municipal library ended with a talk by Dr Jurgen Stigter on the classic works devoted to the popular games of the time, (...). Jurgen used the example of draughts to show that it is not always possible to draw reliable conclusions about the spread of the game from the contents of books, as draughts, although a popular game, is not mentioned in some of them.
Herbert Bastian (Germany) devotes a large part of his spare time to studying the Chapais manuscript, a revolutionary manuscript for the game of chess in its day.
Let us leave the floor to Herbert Bastian:
I was then given the honour of reporting on the state of research on the Chapais manuscript, Mennerat's most important contribution to chess history. The chess-historical significance of the work is now well understood and will be described in my forthcoming book on it. Chapais coined the concept of opposition, which is extremely important for endgame theory, and was the first to use the multifunctional king movement (as I call it) in a whole series of examples, which only became generally known through the famous Réti study of 1921. Chapais was the first to study the endgame king and two knights against king and pawn, which Alexei Troitsky (*1866-†1942) later used as a model, and probably communicated with André Danican Philidor (*1726-†1795) about the endgame king, rook and bishop against king and rook. My investigations of various kinds have used a variety of clues that Chapais could be a pseudonym and in fact the famous French mathematician Gaspard Monge (*1746-†1818) is hiding behind it. Even if there is no 100% proof, the weight of circumstantial evidence is, in my opinion, overwhelming.
Here is the presentation given by Mr Henrik Lindberg (Sweden) at the CH&LS association's general meeting in Belfort.
Henrik Lindberg, assistant professor for economic history in Stockholm, reported in an extremely interesting lecture on the life story of the Swede Folke Røgard (*1899-†1973), lawyer and FIDE President from 1949-1970. Those who are interested in chess history during the Cold War can already look forward to the hopefully imminent publication of Henrik's book, as the title of the lecture reveals: Folke Røgard: organiser of modern world chess in the shadow of the cold war. Røgard was a well-known personality and made headlines, among other things, as the lawyer of the famous Swedish actress Ingrid Bergman (*1915-†1982), who was seen in the 1942 film Casablanca alongside Humphrey Bogart (*1899-†1957), incidentally also a chess enthusiast. Røgard got the FIDE World Championship cycle off the ground when the first interzonal tournament went to Saltsjöbaden in Sweden (1948). Through his good contacts on both sides, he also repeatedly succeeded in bringing the Soviet Union and the USA together, for example by preparing the bilateral match of 1955.
This is the text of the first conference held on Saturday 2 September at the CH&LS association's general meeting in Belfort.
The presentation was given by Clémence Tariol, curator of the Mennerat collection at the Léon Deubel library in Belfort.
by Herbert Bastian
On 2 September members of the Chess History and Literature Society (formerly Ken Whyld Association, KWA) met for their annual meeting in Belfort, France, one of the magical places for chess historians. The Belfort City Library administers the estate of Dr Jean Mennerat (*1917-†2007), the most important French collector of chess literature. In the course of his life, Mennerat collected about 27,000 books and about 1,000 periodicals on the royal game, which are now preserved for posterity in Belfort.
After a short welcome in the City Library by Prof. Dr. Frank Hoffmeister, who replaced the Dutchman Bob van de Velde as President of the CH&LS last year, curator Clémence Tariol introduced the Mennerat Collection in a PowerPoint presentation. Mennerat began collecting in 1936. The dominant language of the works is English with about 6,000 titles, followed by about 4,100 German-language works. It is surprising that "only" 8% each of the works are in French, Spanish, Dutch and Slavonic. Rarer languages such as Swedish, Hebrew, Maori and Esperanto are also represented. The actual collection is located elsewhere and could not be visited. However, members were able to examine a selection of some particularly valuable items from the collection.
by Siegfried Schönle [Original article in German is here. Translation by DeepL]
According to the German Chess Federation, there are over 2000 chess clubs in Germany. Each of these clubs has its own history, be it short or far back in the history of chess in Germany.
A generally perceptible sign of this are, among other things, the countless club magazines, commemorative publications, publications on club anniversaries, which as a rule find significance and attention in the narrow circle of the club and the respective city, and more rarely cause a supra-regional interest.
A brief look back into the history of chess associations or chess clubs shows that the oldest chess club in Germany was founded in Berlin in 1803 - later called the Great Chess Club. This can be proven, among other things, by the following anonymously published writing:
Dear fellow members of the CH&LS,
Our treasurer Henri Serruys and I are about to prepare our report on the status of membership and annual fee payments for the General Assembly in Belfort on September 2 – where, of course, we hope to meet many of you!
In order to complete the report, we have a few requests for you:
It appears that some of the email addresses we have are no longer active – so if you have changed your email address recently please inform the secretary of the valid one!
And please observe that the payment of the membership fee for 2023 must be completed no later than August 15. If you have any questions, please contact us!
Dear members of the society!
This is to invite you for our next General Assembly meeting on 2 September 2023 in Belfort and share with you the final program. We are holding this meeting in the city library of Belfort, which hosts the chess collection of our late member, Jean Mennerat (Bibliothèque Municipale de Belfort - Fonds Mennerat ). "La bibliothèque municipale" is located at Place Jacques Chirac, BP 80025, 90000 Belfort.
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