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|Apr-07-09|| ||Open Defence: In the Mahabaratha there is the story of Ekalavya, the archer who studies by thinking of Dronacharya (the teacher of the famed archer Arjuna), his prowess increases solely on account of devotion to his Guru (teacher)|
When he finally meets his Guru, Arjuna is jealous of his prowess and Drona to keep a promise to Arjuna that he will be the best Archer in the world asks Ekalavya for a "Gurudakshina" i.e. a gift which the student is to give his Guru in return for knowledge and demands Ekalvya's thumb as his Gurudakshina
Ekalavya gladly gives up his thumb
well what does all this have to do with Barden ? well I kind of feel like Ekalavya in that I studied a lot from the columns of Mr Barden, though he was never my Guru in person he certainly is one in deed
|Apr-09-09|| ||falso contacto: cool post.
im not sure I understood that part "maha-who-knows-what", but i always thought Arjuna was a wolf-hunter.
Indeed Patagonic gauchos used to say "Arjuna con la lobuna". And if you consult La Sevillana Library, which might be sharp-edged, you will know that "lobuna" is a female wolf.
|Apr-11-09|| ||Benzol: <Open Defence> <and he is still alive though I imagine he is retired.>|
While I doing a bit of research about Bob Wade and Fedor Bohatirchuk I found a reference to <chessgames.com> by Len Barden at www.ecforum.org.uk dated December 2008. It's possible he visits here clandestinely.
|Apr-11-09|| ||roberts partner: http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/chess|
|Apr-19-09|| ||falso contacto: I wasn't trying to disrespect the Mahabaratha. Just mixed with some argentinian popular culture (Inodoro Pereyra). But it's a tough task.|
|May-01-10|| ||newzild: My mum bought me Barden's book Play Better Chess for my 11th birthday. It was my first chessbook. There was no chess club where I lived (Hawkes Bay, New Zealand), so I used to play through the grandmaster games by myself. Thirty years later, I'm an expert-strength player and still look at the book from time to time. It's buried in the back of the wardrobe somewhere.|
Thanks for the inspiration, Leonard.
|Sep-13-10|| ||FSR: I played (and managed to draw) an Internet 15-minute game against Barden earlier this year, which gives me a Morphy Number of 4. (I drew Barden, who drew Mieses at the Hastings Premier Reserves 1949-50, who drew Bird at Hastings 1895(!), who lost many games to Morphy in 1858 and 1859.)|
Barden is one of five known living players with a Morphy Number of 3. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morphy... and add to the list Melvin Chernev, Irving's son, who played an offhand game with Lasker (who played Bird many times) in 1938. http://www.chesshistory.com/winter/... As of a few months ago, Melvin Chernev was alive and living near San Francisco. I spoke to him on the phone.
|Sep-13-10|| ||dikankan: Congratulations on that result FSB, and on such an informative post.
On the subject of Morphy numbers, I have a copy of the 1971 Volume of the British Chess Magazine, which includes the following obituary (p. 249): |
"Essex chess players suffered a severe loss with the death of T.H. George on April 19th at the age of 85. He was the doyen of essex chessplayers...He was rather proud of of having played a man who had played Morphy. this happened in his young days when he beat Jas. Mortimer in a club match; Mortimer had played friendly games with Morphy with Paris in the early sixties if the last century."
I see no reason to doubt this, which if accepted would give T. H. George a Morphy number of 2, and by a route entirely unrecognised by the wikipedia entry to which you have linked. I don't know anything else about T. H. George, but if he was active into the 1950s there may be more extant players who met him and so have Morphy numbers of 3.
|Sep-15-10|| ||FSR: <dikankan> An interesting find. Very likely Mortimer did play Morphy, although unfortunately there is no contemporaneous record of that. Lawson in his magisterial biography of Morphy notes that Mortimer witnessed Morphy's match against Anderssen at the end of 1858, and that on January 3, 1859 an American (probably Mortimer) conveyed to Harrwitz Morphy's offer to play a match against him at pawn and move odds. A number of games that Morphy played in Paris in 1863 are known, but alas none against Mortimer. I know nothing about Mr. George, but if he continued playing chess until the end of his life it is (as you say) highly likely that some of his opponents are still with us.|
|Sep-15-10|| ||FSR: <dikankan> I now agree that Mr. George's Morphy Number of 2 is adequately corroborated. CHESS Monthly in September 1892 had an article about Mortimer. From page 66 thereof: "In 1853, he was appointed attaché of the United States Legation in Paris, where he had an opportunity of renewing his acquaintance with Paul Morphy. The two countrymen thus became intimate friends. Both being passionately fond of chess, many hundreds of games were played by the master and pupil . . . ."|
|Sep-20-10|| ||FSR: Barden wrote in an e-mail to me this morning:
"Mortimer played Znosko-Borovsky and (most notably) Tartakover at Ostend 1907 which blows up Morphy 3 as a finite one-hand number,
Z-B played at London 1948 (two Penrose brothers), Tartakover met Gligoric, Benko, Bisguier, Fuderer (Bled 1950) , Matanovic, Ivkov, J Penrose and others, Tom George likely played Peter Clarke who was a young member of Ilford CC in the early 1950s when George was still active.
I reckon now the traceable living Morphy 3s number around 15-20.
|Sep-21-10|| ||FSR: My blog post on Morphy numbers: http://chicagochess.blogspot.com/20...|
|Feb-14-13|| ||IndigoViolet: Did he ever play in Baden-Baden?|
|Sep-29-13|| ||Returning Native: He has written a 'puzzle' column daily in the London Evening Standard since the mid 1950s (though now relegated to their website). More information on Wikipedia. I used to read it when I first started working in London nearly 40 years ago. He's a mine of information and helped maintain my love of the game.|
|Sep-29-13|| ||roberts partner: You can find Barden's column at
|Feb-22-14|| ||wordfunph: "In slower chess you can relax between turns: one UK master in a world team event made his move, went to his hotel room, made love to his girlfriend, returned to the board, and won a pawn."|
- Leonard Barden
|Feb-22-14|| ||torrefan: He didn't put his pants back before returning to his board? I bet he just mistook it for a pawn.|
|Aug-20-14|| ||weary willy: Happy Birthday, Mr Barden. A tremendous record of service to British chess for which all UK players can be very grateful.... especially the juniors whom he encouraged and supported through their formative years.|
His journalism continues to inform and entertain .... as it has done for so many decades.
|Aug-20-14|| ||Penguincw: Happy 85th birthday Leonard William Barden.|
|Aug-20-14|| ||ketchuplover: He will soon reach the 59th year mark on his column! Kudos :)|
|Sep-09-14|| ||ketchuplover: Savor your $5000 young man|
|Aug-20-15|| ||kingscrusher: "Play better chess" is one of my most favourite chess books ever. |
It is like getting a snapshot in time of the British and wider global chess scene with Nigel Short as a junior.
|Aug-20-15|| ||diagonal: Happy birthday, dear Mr. Barden, congratulations and many more chess columns to come!|
The maestro himself on the longest running chess column:
Hommage from Frederic Friedel on Leonard Barden's Evening Standard column:
|Aug-20-15|| ||eternaloptimist: Happy birthday to Leonard Barden! <diagonal> That's amazing that his chess column has been going on that long uninterrupted! He's a very dedicated man w/ a good work ethic.|
|Aug-20-16|| ||Nosnibor: I first met Leonard Barden at the Spalding Open in 1970. He was a very nice gentleman. I believe he finished just outside the prize list in a very strong event. Here is an early game ,which is not in the d.b. played when he was just 17. Played in the National Correspondence Chess Club Premier Tournament,1946-7. White L.W.Barden,Black J.K.Ault. Giuoco Piano 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4c3 Nf6 5.d4 exd4 6.cxd4 Bb4+ 7.Nc3 Bxc3+ 8.bxc3 Nxe4 9.d5 Na5 10.Bd3 Nf6 11.Qa4 b6 12.Ba3 Nb7 13.0-0 Nc5 14.Rfe1+ Kf8 15.Qd4 d6 16Re2 Nxd3 17.Qxd3 Bg4 18.Rae1 Bxf3 19.Qxf3 Qd7 20.Bc1! Qg4 21.Qxf6!! Qxe2 22.Rxe2 gxf6 23Bh6+ Kg8 24Re3 1-0 The position after Black`s 20th move would make a good problem for the day. Happy birthday Leonard.|
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