The meeting of Louis Charles Mahé de la Bourdonnais and Alexander McDonnell at London’s Westminster Chess Club in 1834 was notable for a number of reasons. Hard-earned reputations were zealously protected, and masters of equal standing had seldom faced each other on even terms. The chess world was watching closely, but it was the actions of spectator William Greenwood Walker, who recorded each move of the 85 games, that has had the greatest impact.
This recording and publication of game scores from a series of matches between masters was a first in chess history: The event gave birth to modern chess theory. Once based upon composed exercises studied in isolation, theory now became concrete and measurable. Practice replaced contrivance, and tactics could be studied and honed in light of the avalanche of match records that followed.
McDonnell and de la Bourdonnais played six matches in 1834. This book offers biographies of the two and illuminates their timesand then the 85 games are analyzed using modern theory; there are numerous diagrams and previously published commentary. The merits of the openings, middle- and endgame maneuvers of the two are weighed. Nine appendices present selected games against other opponents; excerpt a contemporary account of the games’ ambience; provide other interesting documents; present several statistics; and provide a schematic of mistakes made by both contestants. Bibliography, notes, indexes.
|Publisher:||McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers|
|Product dimensions:||6.90(w) x 10.00(h) x 3.50(d)|
About the Author
Cary Utterberg lives in Golden Valley, Minnesota. He has held the National Master title with the U.S. Chess Federation since 1985.
Table of Contents
Game-by-Game Table of Contents vii
On the Spelling of the Two Opponents' Names 5
A Note on the Games 37
Match 1 de la Bourdonnais 16, McDonnell 5, Drawn 4 Games 1 to 25 43
Match 2 McDonnell 5, de la Bourdonnais 4, Drawn 0 Games 26 to 34 115
Match 3 de la Bourdonnais 6, McDonnell 5, Drawn 1 Games 35 to 46 139
Match 4 de la Bourdonnais 8, McDonnell 3, Drawn 7 Games 47 to 64 181
Match 5 de la Bourdonnais 7, McDonnell 4, Drawn 1 Games 65 to 76 242
Match 6 McDonnell 5, de la Bourdonnais 4, Drawn 0 Games 77 to 85 281
Conclusion: The Statistics 311
Appendix 1 Selected de la Bourdonnais Games 319
Appendix 2 Selected McDonnell Games 337
Appendix 3 Opening Theory, Then and Now 355
Appendix 4 Collected Games of Deschapelles 379
Appendix 5 Statistical Data 382
Appendix 6 Preface to Lewis's A Selection of Games at Chess 389
Appendix 7 Foreword to Bledow's Funfzig auserlesene Schach-Partien 390
Appendix 8 Preface to Greenwood Walker's Games by the Late Mr. M'Donnell 391
Appendix 9 Excerpt from "The Café de la Régence" 394