Marlet's painting of the match between Saint-Amant and Staunton: the original, the lithograph, and the copies

Portrait of Saint-Amant - Le Palamède 2nd series, volume two, 15 July 1842 P.CH.F. de Saint-Amant (Pierre Charles Fournier de Saint-Amant) Director of Le Palamède  By Henri Grévedon
Portrait of Saint-Amant - Le Palamède 2nd series, volume two, 15 July 1842 P.CH.F. de Saint-Amant (Pierre Charles Fournier de Saint-Amant) Director of Le Palamède By Henri Grévedon

by Jean Oliver Leconte

This article concerns the conflict about the painting made by Jean Henry Marlet during the match played in 1843 between Saint-Amant and Staunton. More exactly this painting represents the 19th game of the match, played on December 16, 1843 at the Paris Chess Club (Cercle des Échecs de Paris). This conflict led to a lawsuit between Saint-Amant and the painter Marlet.

The painting of Marlet is an exceptional document in many ways:

  • Most of the notabilities of the Chess Club (Cercle des Échecs de Paris - on the 1st floor of the Café de la Régence) are represented, with the significant exception of Deschapelles.
  • It is to our knowledge the only representation of the Chess Club of this time.

I discovered in the Parisian press of the time the report of the lawsuit which opposed the painter Marlet to Saint-Amant about the painting. This report brings several very interesting details which Saint-Amant mentions partially in the chess review Le Palamède.

There are, so to speak, at least 3 different versions of this painting:

  • The original by Marlet
  • A lithograph by Alexandre Laemlein
  • Copies painted from the engraving.

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IM Herbert Bastian turns 70 years old

Herbert Bastian, 2012
Herbert Bastian, 2012

Our member, the former President of the German Chess Federation and passionate chess historian Herbert Bastian turned 70 years on 10 December 2022. Born 1952 in Emmersweiler, a small town in the German region of Saarland, near the Franco-German border, Herbert developed his great chess talent in the local chess club since 1966 and became several times champion of his native Saarland. In 1972, he participated at federal level and won the Dähne-Cup in 1976. Although being among the German elite players, Herbert chose a civil career and became a school teacher for mathematics. But even as an amateur he out-calculated Viktor Korchnoi in a memorable game from the GM tournament of Baden-Baden in 1981 (see below). He became shared second at the German championship a year later and represented German colours at the European team championship in Plovdiv (Bulgaria) 1983. He also played in the Bundesliga and scored his 20th(!) title as champion of Saarland in 1992. His constant successes earned him the IM title in 2005. As recent as 2020, he still participated in the federal championships with a remarkable performance of 4/9 at 2300 ELO level.

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New Member: Pete Tamburro

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pixabay.com

Our new member, Pete Tamburro from Morristown (US), is presented in the members area (You must be logged in to read).

New Member: Pete Tamburro

Schach und Musik (Chess and Music)

pianomania v. Hannelore Sahm, cutout.
pianomania v. Hannelore Sahm, cutout.

Another exhibition related to chess opened this week. Siegfried Schönle was there again and reported:

Schach und Musik (in German)

[Update 2022-11-25] The English version of the text is now available: Schach und Musik (Chess and Music) [/Update]

 
 

 

 

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Chess and humor

Poster for the exhibition
Poster for the exhibition

Siegfried Schönle reports on the meeting of the members of Chess Collectors International (CCI) and CH&LS on the occasion of the "Schachwunderland - Kunst und Humor im Schach" (Chess Wonderland - art and humor in chess) exhibition in Plauen. The article is written in German, but will soon be published in English:

Schach und Humor

[Update 2022-11-25] The English version of the text is now available: Chess and humor [/Update]

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Searching for Bonaparte’s famous chess table at the Café de la Régence

Donald M. Liddell - Chessmen - frontcover
Donald M. Liddell - Chessmen - frontcover

by Jean Oliver Leconte

The table where Bonaparte is said to have played chess at the Café de la Régence was a tourist attraction for almost a century.

Some time ago, Mr. Patrice Belluire (France), whom I thank, gave me a book reference (which I did not know), where this table of Bonaparte appears and in which it is possible to view the interior of the Café de la Régence at the end of the 1930s.

It is the book Chessmen published in 1937 that I bought in a small Parisian bookshop (a copy signed by the author M. J.Maunoury and dedicated to the publisher Harcourt!)

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Exchanges with the French association "Théméchecs"

Logo Théméchecs
Logo Théméchecs

The president of the "Théméchecs" association, Mr. Alain Barnier (France), has contacted us for various exchanges concerning our two associations with rather similar objectives. What he proposes will interest, I hope, most of our members.

Our French association gathers chess collectors, originally rather philatelists, but also collectors of books, magazines, pictures, games and other objects, as well as amateurs of chess history and culture. A quarter of the members are outside France.

Our website is here: http://echecs.online.fr/themechecs/

We collaborate with several partner associations: Cossu in the USA, Motiefgroep Schaken in the Netherlands, GSM in Germany more recently.

I propose the idea of collaborating with you, notably by exchanging information, for example on our side:

  • by mentioning the website of the KWA / CH&LS association;
  • mentioning your events and informing you about ours;
  • sending our newsletter to the president (3 times a year);
  • giving you free access to our auctions (once or twice a year), etc.

A Letter from our president Frank Hoffmeister

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Dear members of the society!

On 10 September 2022, we held our first General Assembly in the beautiful Palazzo del Doglione of Marostica. Many of our members could also see the life chess event in the evening which was shown until the end despite some heavy rain showers in between! I wish to thank in particular our Italian members Stefano Zulian and the President of the Marostica Chess Club, who helped a great deal in the preparation. Moreover, it was an honour that we could count the great Italian Chess historian Dr. D’Elia among our participants. In order to facilitate the cross-communication, I attach the list of participants with e-mails for your information.

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The long-forgotten Turkish chess automaton of the Italian Joseph Morosi

Biographie Universelle - title page
Biographie Universelle - title page

by Jean Oliver Leconte

In a previous article on my website (in French) I wrote about the visit of Kempelen's chess-playing Turkish automaton to Paris in 1783.

During my research I discovered many newspaper articles about a chess-playing Turkish automaton in Paris in the year 1800. At that time Kempelen was still alive and his automaton had not yet been sold to Johann Maelzel. But curiously, the name of the person who brought the automaton to Paris in 1800 was not Kempelen. In 1783, the newspaper articles mention a certain Anthon (who I have not yet identified). And in 1800, it is a certain Morosi. And that's when I thought something was wrong. And "Hey presto!", in the reference book "Biographie universelle, ancienne et moderne" (Paris 1843), we find in volume 74, page 417 a short biography of someone called Joseph Morosi (26-06-1772 - 27-09-1840) presented as an Italian mechanic born in Ripafratta, a small village in Tuscany. The text indicates:

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Zur Schach-Akademie in Achdorf bei Landshut und vom Sailerschen-Kreis (To the chess academy in Achdorf near Landshut and from the Sailerschen circle)

Siegfried Schönle - Zur Schach-Akademie in Achdorf bei Landshut und vom "Sailerschen-Kreis" - Cover
Siegfried Schönle - Zur Schach-Akademie in Achdorf bei Landshut und vom "Sailerschen-Kreis" - Cover

On two chess scenes of the early 19th century:

A chess academy in Achdorf near Landshut by professors from the Landshut University (1800-1826), later the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich. Attached to the first part is a facsimile of Prof. Mall's witty and ironic speech at the end of the chess academy entitled Zweiter Jahresbericht über die Ereignisse in der Schach-Akademie auf dem Zollhause zu Achdorf im Jahre 1814/15 erstattet bei dem Schach-Soupée am 27. Februar 1815. This report, I could only prove 3 printed originals, gives an insight into the social background of the members of the chess academy and their chess meetings in the former customs house.

In the second part, the lifelong enjoyment of chess by the later Bishop of Regensburg, Johann Michael Sailer (1751-1832), is discussed. He was friends with Johann Caspar Lavater, among others, who also discussed the chess automaton on his trip to Copenhagen in the summer of 1793. Accompanying is described J.M. Sailer, Professor of Theology, through the theological and historical conflicts triggered by the Napoleonic Wars, within and outside of the professorships in Dillingen, Ingolstadt, Landshut and Regensburg in the early 19th century.

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