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The Chess Tournament - London 1851

377 pages, paperback, Hardinge, 2003.

Incl. 7% Tax, excl. Shipping Cost

This product is not available any more, neither at the manufacturer/publisher nor at Schach Niggemann, and it is not possible for us to order this article otherwise.

Deskriptive Notation.

Descriptive Notation.

Howard Staunton, the organiser of London 1851 and writer of the book, was the epitome of mid-Victorian versatility and self confidence. By defeating the leading French and German masters such as St Amant, Horwitz and Harrwitz in gruelling set matches, Staunton had established himself as the champion. Now, by organising the first ever International Chess Tournament, Staunton hoped to display chess in its true colours, amongst the imperial splendour of the 1851 Great Exhibition in Queen Victoria's London. Although Staunton did not win the tournament, this honour falling to the German master Adolph Anderssen, this record of the inaugural international chess gathering provides a fitting monument to Staunton's prowess and love of the game.


This book is the remarkable record of an historic landmark in chess. The first international chess tournament at London in 1851 was the scheme of the great Howard Staunton who, in Harry Golombek's words, "conceived the astonishing and original idea of holding a tournament at which all the best players in Europe would be assembled." And in 1851, before the days of Paul Morphy, Europe signified the world in chess terms.

This event was intended to coincide with the Great Exhibition in London of the same year, and in May of 1851 most of Europe's leading players did, in fact, meet each other in the first round of the series of knock-out matches which constituted the tournament. Staunton had managed to accumulate in excess of £ 500 for the prize fund, a tremendous sum in those days, and the final standings of the prize winners were: 1 Anderssen; 2 Wyvill; 3 Williams; 4 Staunton; 5 Szen; 6 Captain Kennedy; 7 Horwitz and 8 Mucklow.

In 1843, Staunton was himself widely regarded as the "Champion", but by 1851 his powers were somewhat on the wane. He was still capable of masterly strategic achievements, but the massive drain of organisational commitments had diverted his energy from playing the game. For this the chess world should be grateful, for Staunton by his efforts in 1851 inaugurated the movement which led to the modern circuit of international tournaments. Had Staunton been alive today, I am sure that he would have first set his sights on the world title, and thereafter would have devoted his energies to becoming President of the World Chess Federation,

Raymond Keene

International Grandmaster

Language English
Author Staunton, Howard
Publisher Hardinge
Medium Book
Weight 615 g
Width 13.8 cm
Height 21.5 cm
Pages 377
ISBN-10 1843820897
Year of Publication 2003
Binding paperback

The Chess Tournament - London 1851