< Earlier Kibitzing · PAGE 267 OF 267 ·
|Feb-04-16|| ||MissScarlett: Sir, you insult me. My posts are universally brilliant.|
|Feb-04-16|| ||john barleycorn: <MissScarlett: Sir, you insult me. My posts are universally brilliant.>|
|Feb-04-16|| ||Gregor Samsa Mendel: <MissScarlett: Sir, you insult me. My posts are universally brilliant.>|
|Feb-04-16|| ||Sally Simpson: There are so few pictures of Morphy because he was behind the camera, not in front of it.|
Before the Morphy era, the 1850's, photography was still a hit or miss affair.
Morphy the photographer appeared and perfected the art of developing.
That is why Morphy's name is linked with developing. It was nothing to chess which was just a hobby. He never even had a complete chess set. If you look at the games he played later in life you will find there are pieces missing before the start of the game.
Morphy vs Maurian, 1869
|Feb-04-16|| ||morfishine: I don't think it's that difficult to arrive at the conclusion that Morphy was a true chess prodigy. Morphy spent his very early years only being allowed to view the other family members playing, which was only on Sunday. When he was finally allowed to play, he would play "one or two" strenuous games on Sunday with no playing allowed for the balance of the week. This was due to other responsibilities, like, uh, School|
The point is that he picked up on the game from purely watching other family members play while other family members coached him on how the pieces move. There's no evidence that Morphy secretly studied chess late at night (while nobody was looking) or was aware he was awake when he should've been sleeping.
It would be delightful if we had a story of how his mother caught him, even once, working out a chess position, over a battered old set with a grimy chess-book, squinting beside a flickering candle, late at night while others were supposed to be asleep.
Unfortunately, didn't happen...
One can only conclude that when his liberties regarding chess were extended and he was allowed to play more often, he remembered everything that he had learned and seen over the years, and was soon crushing everybody in sight
This is not normal. Morphy did not study openings or chess manuals. He just observed and his natural gift took over from there.
A better definition of a "prodigy" is hard to find
|Feb-04-16|| ||Sally Simpson: Hi Morph,
Re: Books and Morphy.
This discussion must have been brought up before and I found a solid reference here starting 20th November 2005 by LIFE Master AJ. The post further down the page by ckr, the same date is good.
Yes a prodigy gifted with what sounds like a photographic memory. But by all accounts he could recall other masters games so before 1857 he must have read some chess books. He did not make these games up.
The pity is the just the two games on record v Rousseau 1849. According to Sergeant these two played 50+ games between 1849 and 1851 with Morphy winning 'nine tenths'.
Ernest Morphy sent one game to Kieseritzky for publication in 'La Regance.' in October 1849.
Morphy vs E Rousseau, 1849
See Sneaky's post there for a copy of the accompanying letter.
It would have been interesting to see a lot more of these games for the opening moves. For although the letter says Paul had not opened a work on chess we could see if he was following the accepted theory of the day or played what later became an improvement (A TN) years ahead of it's time.
I'm thinking Morphy was pretty much booked up. His gift was he was years ahead of his time in positional play (backed up with opening theory) and from there the sparkling combinations came.
More of these Rousseau games may have helped to see what Morphy knew about the openings and whether or not we can detect the stench of midnight oil.
Anderssen tried to undermine Morphy's 'book' when playing 1.a3 v Morphy in their 1858 match.
And look more closely at this match. Morphy wins games in 17, 20 and 24 moves. Opening crushes. The two Anderssen wins (one with 1.a3) both go over 70 moves. Who was the better booked up player.
And then there is Morphy himself lambasting the Sicilian Defence rejoicing it is no longer popular and calling the years when it was employed 1843-1851 'the period of closed games.', That from his column in the New York Ledger. (1859-1860)
So when did he see these games?
See JoergWalter's post 2011 for the full article.
Morphy vs Harrwitz, 1858
Did Morphy really decide in 1859 to suddenly look at all the games including the McDonnell - Labourdonnais match from 1843-1851 just for one newspaper article?
Many unanswered questions. But I think he looked at a lot more books and chess columns when he was in his early teens than has been suggested.
|Feb-05-16|| ||jnpope: If I correctly recall, Maurian mentioned that Morphy had given all of his chess books to him back when they were students together. I think Maurian mentioned the titles... I will try to find a reference for where I had read this (or dig up the column directly).|
With an eidetic memory Morphy may not have "studied" but he was certainly "booked up" by reading through the material, at least once, at some point in his life.
|Feb-05-16|| ||morfishine: Thank you <Sally Simpson> You are one of the most respected members here at <CG>. Your comments are well received, I'm sure of that. |
I think its enlightening to try to try to identify or best create what home life was like for Morphy and how he matured, advanced, improved in chess. Trying to recreate a previous time, with thoughts and ideas and general way of life can be challenging.
I'm not convinced that Morphy was "booked up" though I know what you mean. Sure, he could have had access to whatever "books" or periodicals that were available. My comment was focused on his early years when he was less than 10 years old. I doubt he had unfettered access to books or even cared about books at that age. Thats my point. Of course, his library grew later
|Feb-05-16|| ||The Kings Domain: From what I know and the impression that I have Morphy may have studied the basics but didn't go beyond that. His interest in Chess literature was fleeting and from Edge's book I don't recall him mentioning Morphy poring over a Chess book during his European tour. Morphy was like Capablanca in that after learning the rudiments of the game his natural talent took over and he didn't have to work too hard to maintain the quality and consistency of his play.|
|Feb-05-16|| ||tamar: Lawson passes on Maurian's account of Morphy teaching him chess beginning with them both being in the College Infirmary, and his question to Morphy "How is it possible that two intelligent beings should sit for an hour or more moving little figures of white and black wood, and find recreation therein?"|
"If you knew the game you would change your opinion," Morphy answered.
The experience of learning the game and having it explained by Morphy completely "changed my mind and opinion". Maurian said he thereafter "ransacked" the bookstores of Mobile and New Orleans for chess books.
That Morphy gave him his chess books probably had more to do with Maurian's zeal for the game than Morphy not wanting them anymore. They were always available to him in his memory, and he had the means at the time of acquiring more.
|Feb-06-16|| ||saturn2: If I remember correctly in Fischers essay on the ten best chessplayers of all the time he states that Morphy knew a chess opening book called "Bilguier" and Morhpy had better knowlegde of openings than all his opponents.|
|Feb-06-16|| ||TheFocus: Fischer says: <He was the best-read player of his time, and is known to have been familiar with such books as Bilguier's Handbook (first published in 1838 and consisting of 400 pages of tabular analysis) and Staunton's "The Chess Handbook," among others.>|
|Feb-06-16|| ||morfishine: When Morphy was 12, his uncle Ernest stated "This child has never opened a work on chess". If Ernest is correct, then Morphy began to build his library after that age|
|Feb-06-16|| ||john barleycorn: <TheFocus> yes, also the 1851 tournament book edited by Staunton where Morphy added
"and some devilish bad games".
And of course he was very familiar with the Labourdonnais-McDonnel match
|Feb-06-16|| ||john barleycorn: https://books.google.de/books?id=xV...|
|Feb-08-16|| ||saturn2: It is my assumption on Morphy that he analyzed the known openings of his time a lot and that his achievement was to have recognized the fundamental importance of this for chess. I have no proof for the assumption. But for someone with a brain that could memorize whole textbooks on law and who was a chessplayer at the same time it is plausible that Morphy had a long and well assorted opening list preserved in his memory.|
|Feb-10-16|| ||offramp: <Poulsen: <MagnusVerMagnus>< If there was ratings inflation he was probably 3000 ELO, well 2900 at least :)>
I know Morphy is the most overrated player of all time - but you are taking this to an entirely new level.|
... but of course: if the rating inflation is high enough anything is possible. Even I could reach - hmm - 4000?>
The highest Elo rating ever seen at chessgames.com is by Stan Vaughan. It is 4412.
|Feb-10-16|| ||morfishine: <offramp> Low and behold, Stan Vaughan is a real person and the WCF appears to be a real entity. I went to the site: http://www.wcfchess.org/|
The icons make a cool clicking noise when passing over them
|Feb-10-16|| ||HeMateMe: I want Johnny Depp to play Morphy in the planned, upcoming biopic "Gumbo Sacrifice, the Life and Times of Paul Morphy."|
Andy Richter will play the elusive Staunton, Mike Myers [Sprockets] will be his talented nemesis Adolf Andersson, Nick Nolte will play President Ulysses S. Grant, who urges Paul to "Smite those Eurotrash pussies!"
Wardrobe by RuPaul, directed by John Waters, script by Quentin tarrantino.
Start emailing Hollywood, people! We and make this happen!
|Feb-11-16|| ||offramp: <HeMateMe: I want Johnny Depp to play Morphy in the planned, upcoming biopic "Gumbo Sacrifice, the Life and Times of Paul Morphy.">|
My money is on crooner Dr John to land the part. His voice will fit the dance numbers perfectly, especially when Paul Morphy sings "Soy Un Perdedor" after losing the first game to Anderssen.
< Earlier Kibitzing · PAGE 267 OF 267 ·