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This is the story of the birth of modern chess – when the possibilities of chess as an art, a science and a sport all converged.
The point of convergence was a young boy from Louisiana named Paul Morphy. At a time when America was seen as a backwoods nation with little cultural history and even less intellectual impetus, at a time when chess was considered the exclusive property of a few European countries, at a time when the game was played successfully by a handful of men wizened by years, Paul Morphy, in the brief span of 19 months and with seemingly little effort, defeated conclusively every player he met.
While today few non chess players even know his name, he was one of the most famous celebrities of his time and within the hallowed halls of the chess playing community he is considered by some as the greatest chess player of all time.
But this diminutive, unassuming boy rose to fame almost out of nowhere and once he secured his place in history, he retired back into that hazy unknown, shunning the public eye, never again to play serious chess. Not only was he one of great practitioners of the game, but also one of it’s greatest enigmas. He’s been given the sobriquet, The Pride and Sorrow of Chess.
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James Kipping vs Paul Morphy
Casual Game (1858), Birmingham ENG, Aug-26
Italian Game: Evans Gambit. Accepted (C51)
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. b4 Bb4 5. c3 Bc5 6. d4 ed4 7. cd4 Bb6 8. d5 Na5 9. Bd3 d6 10. Bb2 Nf6 11. h3 O-O 12. O-O Nh5 13. Qd2 f5 14. Na3 Ng3 15. Rfe1 fe4 16. Be4 Bf5 17. Bf5 Nf5 18. Re4 Qd7 19. Bc3 Bc5 20. Nc2 b6 21. Qg5 Rae8 22. Rae1 Re4 23. Re4 h6 24. Qg4 Rf7 25. Re6 c6 26. Ncd4 cd5 27. Qg6 Ne7 28. Qg3 Nac6 29. Nc6 Qe6 30. Nd8 Qg6
Materials used in research:
Paul Morphy: Pride and Sorrow of Chess by David Lawson
The Genius Of Paul Morphy by Chris Ward
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