< Earlier Kibitzing · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·
|Apr-13-10|| ||keypusher: From Tarrasch's 1906 article on Pillsbury, which also discussed other cases of insanity among chess masters. The full article as well as the German original is on the Tarrasch page. |
<For Minckwitz chess has not the slightest to do with his mental illness, which in my opinion must be ascribed to “primary hallucinatory madness” <”primare halluzinatorische Verrucktheit”>. Minckwitz was unfortunately placed, such that he was at great risk of mental illness. Of his father, a professor at Leipzig University, it is recounted (not as a funny story, but as truth) that he used to say in his lectures: “There are only three great German writers: Schiller, Goethe, and the third modesty forbids me to name.” <This reads exactly like Janowski’s alleged statement about the great chessmasters of his own time – perhaps Janowski's quote is spurious?> This was the era in which Paul Lindau went eagerly on the hunt for Sunday poets <Sonntagdichtern> and, when he found one, tore him to pieces to the delight of the public. He came upon Minckwitz’s epic “The War for Liberation” <”Die Befreiungskriege”> and quoted the following verse describing the Battle of Leipzig:
Napoleon was yellow like a pickled egg <Solei>, Anyone who saw him knew good health he must beg.
<Napoleon war gelb wie ein Solei, Man sah ihm an, dass ihm nicht wohl sei.>
<Obviously I warped the meaning for the sake of getting a rhyme.>
Such a dreadful verse speaks volumes. With such an inheritance, we can rule out chess from the etiology of Minkwitz’s mental illness; surely it did him less harm than alcohol, to which he was strongly attached.>
|Apr-13-10|| ||FHBradley: Witty but bad taste, Dr. Tarrasch.|
|Apr-13-10|| ||keypusher: <FHBradley: Witty but bad taste, Dr. Tarrasch.>|
Hard to disagree.
|Sep-23-11|| ||zydeco: There's a nice tribute to Minckwitz in Checkmate Magazine, Vol 1, calling him a first-rate theorist and problemist but with very bad nerves. "Frequently Minckwitz gained a great superiority in the opening, middlegame, and even endgame, only to lose by a complete and sudden collapse - not a blunder but seemingly a relaxation of mental powers."|
Once, when his opponent (Wilfried Paulsen) overstepped the time limit, Minckwitz wanted to keep playing and eventually lost "by the usual collapse." The tournament director solomonically ruled the game a loss for both players.
The eulogy in Checkmate concludes discreetly by saying that "some years ago it became necessary to refuse his entry to all public tournaments" - which means, I assume, that he's completely loony.
Minckwitz wrote a book called Humor in Chess, which looks like it might be interesting (the chapters are titled things like 'A terrible vision of H. Lehner'/'Sufferings and joys of a problem composer') but available only in German.
British Chess Magazine, in 1886, speculates that he may be the strongest player in Germany (along with Bardeleben). BCM mentions that his father was a noted classics professor and that Minckwitz emerged as a strong player when he was young (he became editor of Schachzeitung at 22).
|Apr-11-12|| ||brankat: R.I.P. master Minckwitz.|
|Aug-17-12|| ||Karpova: <Der bekannte Schachmeister Hans Minckwitz wurde am Abend des 15.Mai in Biebrich von der elektrischen Bahn überfahren und ist, nachdem ihm beide Arme amputirt wurden, am 20. Mai im Krankenhaus zu Biebrich gestorben. Minckwitz litt in den letzten Jahren an Wahnvorstellungen und hat sich vermuthlich in einem Anfall von Geistesstörung in selbstmörderischer Absicht überfahren lassen. Er war als Sohn des ehemaligen Leipziger Professors Johannes Minckwitz am 11. April zu Leipzig geboren und hatte sich in früheren Jahren durch seine Thätigkeit als Schachredacteur, sowie durch seine rege Betheiligung an Schachturnieren in weiteren Kreisen bekannt gemacht.>|
From page 100 of the 1901 'Wiener Schachzeitung'
|Aug-18-12|| ||Karpova: On pages 338 to 342 of the 1906 'Wiener Schachzeitung', Dr. W. Ahrens from Magdeburg under the heading <Dr. Siegbert Tarrasch als Historiker und Pathograph> tores to shreds Dr. Tarrasch's article on Pillsbury but concentrates on the part where Dr. Tarrasch discusses Minckwitz (see <keypusher>'s post from 2010.04.13).|
The first anecdote about Minckwitz Sr. claiming to be the greatest German poet together with Von Goethe and Schiller, is most likely apocryphal and this kind of saying has been assigned to others before (e. g. Konrad Büchell). Dr. Ahrens devotes a lot of attention to this part and points e. g. out that Minckwitz Sr. was a great admirer of Count August von Platen-Hallermünde and translated his odes into greek (so he would rather be Minckwitz's Nr. 3). Apparently, the only actual case of this form of joke (with two people instead of three) was that of Dr. Tarrasch saying that there were only two chessmasters - and the other one was living in New York.
The second one, about Napoleon and the pickled egg, Dr. Ahrens claims that Minckwitz did not write it. That he actually did not even write an epic called 'Die Befreiungskriege' and that the verses were just a parody by Paul Lindau.
|Aug-18-12|| ||Calli: <Karpova> You might also enjoy Game Collection: Deutsche Schachzeitung|
|May-22-13|| ||Yopo: [Event "Berlin (Germany)"]
[Site "Berlin (Germany)"]
[White "Johannes Minckwitz "]
[Black "Simon A Winawer "]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Nxe4 6. d4 Be7 7. Qe2 f5 8.
dxe5 O-O 9. Nc3 Nxc3 10. Qc4+ Kh8 11. Qxc3 b5 12. Bb3 a5 13. a3 Ra6 14. Bf4 Nb8
15. Rad1 a4 16. Bd5 c6 17. Ba2 c5 18. e6 d6 19. Ne5 Bf6 20. Qg3 c4 21. Nf7+
Rxf7 22. exf7 Be7 23. Rfe1 Bd7 24. Rxe7 Qxe7 25. Bxd6 Qxf7 26. Bxb8 Rg6 27. Qc7
Re6 28. h3 Re7 29. Rxd7 1-0
|Oct-19-14|| ||Karpova: Source: Deutsches Wochenschach, 6 July 1890, issue 27, pp. 221-223|
Editor of the 'Deutsche Schachzeitung' from 1864 to 31 December 1886, with short breaks.
Johannes G. E. L. von Minckwitz ("Hans"), son of Prof. Dr. Johannes Minckwitz of Leipzig (author, poet and translator. <Verewigt> in Heidelberg, Germany on 29 December 1885) and his wife Ernestine (née Schuchardt) of Magdeburg, Germany. Hans was born on 11 April 1843 in Leipzig, Germany. His chess career has been spanning 36 years now (i. e. in July 1890). His father, a <starker Naturspieler>, i. e. no formal chess education but very hard to beat, taught him the game of chess. He also played against Graf Vitzthum von Eckstädt, Otto Wigand, H. Hirschbach and others as a boy, because they were all acquaintances of his father. Very important were also the problems in the Leipzig 'Illustrirten Zeitung', whose chess column he would later edit.
Hans went to school at the <Moderne Gesamtgymnasium> in Leipzig, and Friedrich Spielhagen was one of his teachers. At the age of 15, he joined a Leipzig wholesale firm and stayed there for 9 years. Still, he found time to visit the Leipzig <Hochschule>, studying macroeconomics under Roscher. He also advanced rapidly in chess theory and practice. In 1863, he already published chess problems. In 1864, he won 1st prize in the problem tournament of the West-German Chess Federation (help-mate). Further prizes for problems: 1867 2nd prize ('Neue Berliner Schachzeitung'), 1868 1st prize (West-German Chess Federation), 1869 3rd prize (North-German Chess Federation), 1874 1st prize (Westminster Papers) and 1876 2nd prize (German Chess Federation).
In 1869, Hans shared 3rd prize with Schallopp and Zukertort in the Hamburg <Meisterturnier>. He won 2nd prize at Barmen (1869). He shared 1st prize with Anderssen and Paulsen at Krefeld (1871). He won 4th prize at Frankfurt (1878), 5th prize at Brunswick (1880) and 2nd prize at Graz (1880). He couldn't repeat his success of 1871, because he usually didn't play serious games afterwards, and so went to tournaments unprepared. At the latest Hamburg tournament, he was a contender for 1st prize for a long time, but he couldn't show his best and didn't win a prize (perhaps Hamburg 1885 - http://www.edochess.ca/tournaments/... - is meant).
In 1865, Hans became chess editor of the (Leipzig) 'Schachzeitung' together with Dr. E. v. Schmidt (who has been working as a journalist in Moscow for many years now (probably July 1890 is meant by "now"). The 'Schachzeitung' was renamed 'Deutsche Schachzeitung' in 1871 (Why it said that Hans was an editor from 1864 onwards in the first paragraph, but now gives 1865, I don't know). From 1868 onwards, Hans was its sole editor, except for 1876 to 1879, when someone else had to do the job, since Hans was absent from Leipzig at that time. He also edited the chess columns of the 'Illustrirten Zeitung', the 'Leipziger Tageblatt' and others. His chess literary career is still not finished yet (as of July 1890). He contributed to the advance of theory and he instigated the foundation of a German Chess Federation.
|Oct-19-14|| ||Karpova: Source: Deutsches Wochenschach, 6 July 1890, issue 27, pp. 221-223|
Hans published the following works he authored himself: 'Der Schachkongress zu Krefeld 1871', 'Das ABC des Schachspiels', 'Der Schachkongress zu Frankfurt a. M. 1878', 'Der Schachkongress zu Hamburg 1885', 'Humor im Schachspiel' (1885), 'Der Entscheidungskampf zwischen W. Steinitz und J. H. Zukertort um die Schachmeisterschaft der Welt' (1886), 'Der Schachmatador' (1886), 'Der kleine Schachkönig' (1888). He was awarded the honorary membership of many Chess Societies, e. g. Chess Society Augustea of Leipzig, Academic Chess Club of Leipzig, Chess Club of Frankfurt on the Main, Nuremberg Chess Club, Dresden Chess Club, Chess Club Carola of Leipzig, <Gymnasiasten-Schachchklub Germania> of Bremen, <Gymnasiasten-Schachchklub Germania> of Göttingen, Charlottenburg Chess Society, and so on.
Hans joined a Leipzig bank as <Hauptbuchhalter> (main accounting clerk) in 1872 and soon rose to the rank of a <Bankbevollmächtigter> (bank commissioner perhaps). In 1876, he believed to be entitled to become director, and the <Verwaltungsrat> (board of administration) made him the manager of <Kohlewerke> (coal plants) and brick manufactures in Silesia. This proved to be a mistake in two regards: Han didn't like his new post and the one who was chosen as a director instead, Winkelmann and his co-director Dr. Jerusalem didn't keep house to the best of the institute. The institute went suddenly bankrupt in 1887, both directors fled and were wanted. Dr. Jerusalem committed suicide in Munich.
Ten years earlier, Hans had given up the post and he went back to Leipzig, also because of his chess literary work. He had been publishing chess poems in the 'Schachzeitung' since 1863. In 1870, he published 'Deutschlands Traum, Kampf und Sieg' with sonnets and <Königsliedern> (King's songs). The author notes that the content demonstrated considerable talent and thereby differed positively from the <Kriegsdichtung> (war poetry) of that time. He is now working on larger epics. His patriotic enthusiasm he already demonstrated when joining the <deutsche Burschenschaft> (German fraternity) in 1864, which did a lot to heighten the patriotic mind.
He had been a critic of epics and lyric for Brockhaus' 'Blätter für Literarische Unterhaltung' since 1883, in which he successfully fought for the Lessing-Platen-Minckwitz point of view. Hans is also author of the political-financial <Flugschrift> (pamphlet) 'Jungdeutschland' (Leipzig 1887, pseudonym Arminius) and other works. He has been living in Berlin from 1887 to 1889, but now he moved (withdrew, <zurückgezogen>) to the pleasant <Gartengrundstück> (garden estate) in Belgern on the Elbe. Apart from literary work and research (chess, poetry, historical, macroeconomical), he is also conducting heraldic studies, to support his entitlement to a <Freiherrntitel> (Baron), he himself tracing back his ancestry to von Minckwitzburg and even later back to <Fürst> (prince, sovereign) Inkwi.
|Mar-19-15|| ||zanzibar: I know this player from <NDSC-2e Hamburg (1869)>, and while research Mordecai's "most splendid and complete work of the kind that has ever been published" on openings, came across this obituary:|
It is our painful duty to record the death of Herr von Minckwitz, by his own hand. For a long time past his mental condition has been such as to cause the greatest anxiety to his friends, but for some reason or other he seems not to have been placed under control, and the "eccentricities" which had been noticed developed suddenly into suicidal mania, whereof the end came by his stepping in front of an electric car near Biebrich.
Herr v. Minckwitz was born at Leipsic in 1843, and was taught chess by his father. Like many other enthusiasts, he began by studying, and then composing problems, and in this art he achieved so much success that he obtained prizes in various problem competitions. He then devoted his attention to the practice of the game, and rapidly came to the front as a first-class player,-so that in the Hamburg Tourney of 1869 he divided the first three prizes with Schallopp and Zukertort. In the same year he won the second prize at Barmen, in the West German Association Congress, and at Crefeld, in 1871, he tied with Anderssen and L. Paulsen for the chief honours. The last time when he distinguished himself was in 1880, by winning the second prize at Gratz, and the fifth at Brunswick. Since then his nervous affection increased, and though he competed in several important tourneys, it was without success. His last entry was at Leipsic, in 1894, when he withdrew at the beginning of the contest. The present writer saw him for the first and last time at the Hastings Tourney of 1896, and thought him looking very strange. He came there to compete, but was too late. Herr v Minckwitz did good work for chess in former years as a writer. He was for a long time editor of the German Schachzeitung and of the chess column in the Leipsic Ilhcstrite Zeitnng. He published also many books of the German Congresses, and several smaller works on the game.
BCM v21 (July 1901) p281
|Mar-19-15|| ||zanzibar: By the way, the BCM is being a little generous in describing M's performance in Hamburg, 1869. Andersson took 1st, L. Paulsen 2nd, and so M and others split 3-5 out of a 6-player tournament.|
|Mar-24-15|| ||Paarhufer: Poor Minckwitz. The following is from a newspaper report published two days after the event happened.|
On 25.September 1893, two 'Kaisers' met early in the morning in Hetzendorf (Vienna): <the Emporer of Austria and King of Hungary Franz Joseph I> welcomed <the last German Emporer Wilhelm II>. Already before the Kaisers came to Schönbrunn Palace, a man with a ginger beard caught there the attention of the police by his murky behaviour and worn clothing. So he was asked about his intentions. He showed some cards, which introduced him as 'Fürst Minckwitz', and he said he came on command of the German Emperor. He smiled constantly, but in contrast his strange dead eyes rolled nervously. So he was brought to a high police officer within the palace. Again he showed cards which introduced him as <Johann (Hans) G.E.L. Minckwitz, Reichsgraf von Minckwitzburg, Fürst Jekwi[sic]>. He told that he was 48[sic] years old and a privy Saxon chamberlain.
His true identity was easily determined and it turned out that he had been already two times in psychological therapy. Then he was send to a psychiatric hospital.
|Oct-20-15|| ||zanzibar: Could some editor please correct the bio - apparently he wrote three books on chess.|
According to the wiki article:
<In 1865–1876 and 1879–1886, he was an editor of the Deutsche Schachzeitung and author of Das ABC des Schachspiels (Leipzig 1879), Humor in Schachspiel (Leipzig 1885) and Der kleine Schachkönig (Leipzig 1889).>
Can anyone comment on the contents/quality of any of these?
|Oct-20-15|| ||thomastonk: <z> I've replaced "wrote two books" by "wrote and edited many books". The three books mentioned in the English Wikipedia are probably his most insignificant ones. His importance for German chess is neglected anyway, probably because of his long lasting mental problems.|
|Oct-20-15|| ||zanzibar: Thanks <thomastonk>, that edit improves the accuracy.|
I found only these entries for him on worldcat.org:
https ://www.worldcat.org/search?q= +minckwitz+schach&qt=results_page
(remove the spaces)
<CG> is it necessary to make = + into inside url's?
|Oct-20-15|| ||zanzibar: This is probably a better listing of titles (using author="johannes minckwitz", keyword="chess"):|
|Mar-10-16|| ||zanzibar: Maybe this is one of the "short" breaks from editing referenced in the above...|
<We regret to announce the retirement of Herr Minckwitz from the post of Editor of the Deutsche Zeitung, the office he has so ably filled for a period of eleven years. His successor is Dr. C. Schwede, a problem composer of merit.>
Westminster Papers v10 (2nd Oct 1876) p102.
Not sure how long his "retirement" lasted, or what prompted it.
|Apr-11-16|| ||TheFocus: Happy birthday, Johannes Minckwitz.|
|Nov-27-16|| ||MissScarlett: < On the 17th of May 1901 he threw himself underneath an electric train and lost both arms. He died three days later.|
source: Chicago Daily Tribune, May 19,1901, page 20>
The Chicago Tribune report, echoing notices that appeared in the British papers, dates the accident to the 17th, says Minckwitz was 'cut to pieces', imlying he died instantly.
That he lost both arms and died later, apparently relies on the <Wiener Schachzeitung> piece posted by <Karpova> above: Johannes Minckwitz
But that claims the accident occurred on May 15th.
|Nov-27-16|| ||Paarhufer: Michael Negele wrote an article about Minckwitz in "Karl" 4/2015. Long excerpts can be found here: http://karlonline.org/415_2.htm|
At the end of that article there is Bachmann's description of Minckwitz's last days, which is more extensive than WSZ.
|Dec-01-16|| ||MissScarlett: That too claims the attempted suicide took place on the 15th.|
|Dec-02-16|| ||Paarhufer: There are several newspapers at ANNO of 17 May 1901 confirming the 15th May as the day of the suicide attempt.|
http://anno.onb.ac.at/cgi-content/a... , for example.
|Dec-02-16|| ||MissScarlett: <he threw himself underneath an electric train..>|
Train or tram? Didn't he, in fact, just sit on the line?
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