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Le blog de la Batgirl

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This blog, like most of what I write, focuses on the historical and cultural aspects of chess - with a few rants thrown in for good measure.

I don't accept friend requests; I don't play chess here; and I don't generally respond to notes, but I will respond to messages if they seem to have a purpose other than meaningless chat.  I'm only mentioning this so everyone knows there's nothing personal in my lack of response to any of the above.



    • Chess Problemist Maurian

      Charles de Maurian, well known as Paul Morphy's childhood and life-long friend, developed very quickly as a chess player.  He began learning the game from Morphy during the 1853-4 school year at Spring Hill College and was able to place first in... | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Mar 7, 2013
      • | 2712 views
      • | 9 comments
    • Galbreath Telegraphic

           In my previous blog, Charles de Maurian, I gave an account of John Albert Galbreath. Jeremy Spinrad, a profuse writer on 19th century chess, apprised me of a telegraph match between Mississippi and New Orleans which included both Galbrea... | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Mar 4, 2013
      • | 2433 views
      • | 3 comments
    • Charles de Maurian

       Charles Amedée de Maurian died slighly over 100 years ago. I was reminded the other week (by none other than Dr. Jeremy Spinrad, best known in chess circles from his 3 years of contributions to "Chess Cafe" under the title "New Stories about... | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Feb 27, 2013
      • | 2789 views
      • | 10 comments
    • Reuben Fine: Speed Demon

           Today, especially on the Internet, fast games are probably more the rule than the exception.  Most of the fast games played fall under the "Blitz" and "Bullet" or "Lightning" heading. Time clocks, particularly automatic ones such as che... | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Feb 19, 2013
      • | 3909 views
      • | 18 comments
    • An Incidental Champion

           Some men and women are clearly champions and reach the pinnacle of their field in an almost predictable manner. Some are champion material, but the fates have conspired against them, keeping them from reaching the very top.  Still other... | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Feb 14, 2013
      • | 3333 views
      • | 12 comments
    • Bohatirchuk on Bogoliubov

      | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Feb 4, 2013
      • | 2722 views
      • | 6 comments
    • Gone too Soon

           I know of Elena Donaldson mainly for three reasons-  she was a women's world championship contender(1986); she won the U.S. Women's Chess Championship 3 times: 1990, 1993 (shared) and 1994; she defected from the USSR in 1988 to marry Jo... | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Jan 29, 2013
      • | 3069 views
      • | 15 comments
    • Who Would Marry a Chess Master?

      Here are some photos of various chess masters and their spouses:  We'll start with one of the wives (he was married and divorced twice) of the 19th century Dutch polymath - and for our purposes, chess historian - Antonius van der Linde. I could... | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Jan 20, 2013
      • | 7450 views
      • | 34 comments
    • Santasiere's Folly

      Anthony Edward Santasiere - This name evokes images of the New York chess scene during the 1920, 30s and 40s:  Frank Marshall, Edward Lasker, Albert Pinkus, Fred Reinfeld, Sammy Reshevsky, Abe Kupchik, Isaac Kashdan, I.A. Horowitz, Herbert Seid... | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Jan 11, 2013
      • | 4055 views
      • | 21 comments
    • The Lion of Chess and Other Things

            A long, long time ago... in September of 1706 in Amsterdam to be exact, a man named Mr. Caze dated his manuscript on chess, "Instruction pour ce livre d'échecs : contenant les diverses manieres de jouer le gambit," in a letter of introd... | Read More

      • batgirl
      • | Dec 30, 2012
      • | 3173 views
      • | 9 comments