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London Tournament

Adolf Anderssen15/21(+14 -5 =2)[games]
Elijah Williams13.5/22(+13 -8 =1)[games]
Marmaduke Wyvill13/24(+12 -10 =2)[games]
Jozsef Szen12.5/17(+12 -4 =1)[games]
Howard Staunton11/22(+10 -10 =2)[games]
Hugh Alexander Kennedy10/19(+9 -8 =2)[games]
Bernhard Horwitz5/15(+4 -9 =2)[games]
James Swain Mucklow2/10(+2 -8 =0)[games]
Henry Edward Bird1.5/4(+1 -2 =1)[games]
Johann Jacob Loewenthal1/3(+1 -2 =0)[games]
Lionel Adalbert Bagration Felix Kieseritzky0.5/3(+0 -2 =1)[games]
Samuel Newham0/2(+0 -2 =0)[games]
Edward Shirley Kennedy0/2(+0 -2 =0)[games]
Karl Mayet0/2(+0 -2 =0)[games]
Edward Lowe0/2(+0 -2 =0)[games]
Alfred Brodie0/2(+0 -2 =0)[games] Chess Event Description
London (1851)

Some of the main organizers of the tournament were Bledow (who had passed away by the time the final proposals could be arranged), von der Lasa, Kennedy and Staunton(1). They wanted a congress of competitive chess players at the start of the London World's Fair that could serve as an international and recurring chess meeting for the best players in Europe and the rest of the world(2). The tournament started in May of that year and proceeded to standardize issues such as consistent time-controls, rules and notation in a knock-out style format.

First Round Second Round Semi-final Final ---------- Anderssen 2½ Kieseritsky ½ Anderssen 4 Szen 2 Szen 2 Newham 0 ---------- Anderssen 4 Horwitz 2½ Staunton 1 Bird 1½ Staunton 4½ Staunton 2 Horwitz 2½ Brodie 0 ---------- Anderssen 4½ Williams 2 Wyvill 2½ Löwenthal 1 Williams 4 Mucklow 2 Mucklow 0 E Kennedy 0 Wyvill 4 ---------- Williams 3 H Kennedy 2 Mayet 0 Wyvill 4½ Wyvill 2 H Kennedy 3½ Löwe 0

Anderssen vs Kieseritzky, 1851, the famous Immortal Game, was played at the venue but was not part of the tournament.

References: (1) Wikipedia article: London 1851 chess tournament , (2) Wikipedia article: The Crystal Palace

Missing information: no dates

 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 85  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Szen vs H Kennedy 1-0451851LondonB40 Sicilian
2. Anderssen vs Wyvill 1-0261851LondonB20 Sicilian
3. H Kennedy vs Szen ½-½571851LondonB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
4. H Kennedy vs Szen 0-1301851LondonC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
5. Horwitz vs Bird 1-0551851LondonB21 Sicilian, 2.f4 and 2.d4
6. Bird vs Horwitz 0-1321851LondonB30 Sicilian
7. Mayet vs H Kennedy 0-1391851LondonC00 French Defense
8. Loewenthal vs E Williams 0-1441851LondonC01 French, Exchange
9. J S Mucklow vs E S Kennedy 1-0621851LondonD00 Queen's Pawn Game
10. Horwitz vs Bird ½-½541851LondonA10 English
11. Staunton vs A Brodie 1-0151851LondonC44 King's Pawn Game
12. Szen vs S Newham 1-0641851LondonB44 Sicilian
13. Kieseritzky vs Anderssen 0-1201851LondonB20 Sicilian
14. E Lowe vs Wyvill 0-1291851LondonC00 French Defense
15. E Williams vs Loewenthal 0-1501851LondonC42 Petrov Defense
16. H Kennedy vs Mayet 1-0601851LondonA21 English
17. E S Kennedy vs J S Mucklow 0-1431851LondonB44 Sicilian
18. Wyvill vs E Lowe 1-0411851LondonA20 English
19. Bird vs Horwitz 1-0591851LondonC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
20. A Brodie vs Staunton 0-1521851LondonA30 English, Symmetrical
21. S Newham vs Szen 0-1431851LondonC01 French, Exchange
22. Anderssen vs Kieseritzky ½-½551851LondonC39 King's Gambit Accepted
23. Kieseritzky vs Anderssen 0-1171851LondonB20 Sicilian
24. Loewenthal vs E Williams 0-1391851LondonA40 Queen's Pawn Game
25. Staunton vs Anderssen 0-1471851LondonC50 Giuoco Piano
 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 85  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jun-07-16  zanzibar: <sneaky pete> can I trouble to ask you if you're systematically going through all the Schachzeitung games and comparing to <CG>?

Otherwise, what is your procedure/criteria for reviewing games?

Jun-08-16  sneaky pete: <zanzibar> There is nothing systematic in what I do, it's all haphazardry. I wanted to take a new look at all the games from this tournament with Staunton as my guide. When I discovered he had clipped some games but gave a longer score, I looked elsewhere and found the alternate TB published in the 1852 Schachzeitung.

I think copied the games from another database that used SZ as primary source, but (this other database) added some new mistakes (like 59.Rg7 .. for 59.g7 ..) to the ones SZ had already made (like 21... QR to K's sq = Rae8 misread as 21... QR to Kt's sq = Rab8).

Jun-08-16  zanzibar: <sneaky> (and others...)

Hot off the press...

Please try to download this PGN if you would. It's the most up-to-date and correct version of the tournament, in my belief.

Jun-11-16  zanzibar: OK, just for chuckles, and because it seems reasonably correct, here is the dating of the games using the ILN reporting:

R1.1 = 1851.05.27

R1.2 = 05.28

then "at the termination of this sitting, hostilities were adjourned until Friday, ...".

R1.3 = 05.30

R1.4 = 05.31 (this is interpolated)

R2.x and R3.x = 1851.06.??

R4.x = 1851.07.??

There might be some uncertainty for end R3/beginning R4, but it's not too likely. Nor significant, as an inexact date might suggest some uncertainty of a day or two.

Now the question is, should Z-base actually adopt this dating?

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: I'm correcting the first round result between Williams and Lowenthal from 2-0 to 2-1.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <The ILN [of Saturday, May 31st] states that the 1st Rd pairings were picked randomly on Monday, May 26. The first day of play was Tuesday, the 27th. It appears that the second games were on Wednesday, the 28th. Although the day is not specifically stated, it's hard to imagine that there would already be a day off. Being a 2 out of 3 RD, six players were thus eliminated after only two days. The ILN (Staunton, I presume) laments the random pairings and the 2 of 3 format.>

Actually, only five players were eliminated, because Anderssen vs Kieseritzky, 1851 was drawn, requiring a third game. It's curious that the ILN reporter wouldn't know this, especially if it was Staunton.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: According to the <Northampton Mercury>, June 7th, round 2.1 was held on Monday, June 2nd.
Dec-09-16  zanzibar: <MissS> any info on dating rounds would be appreciated.

I don't think I ever folded the dates into Z-base, but it's never too late.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <R1.1 = 1851.05.27

R1.2 = 05.28

then "at the termination of this sitting, hostilities were adjourned until Friday, ...".

R1.3 = 05.30

R1.4 = 05.31 (this is interpolated)>

I'm pretty certain these are correct. As you're probably aware, tournament chess on a Sunday was a no-no in Britain, at least, until maybe as late as WW2.

Dec-09-16  zanzibar: Yes, this was a fairly widespread convention for many of the early tournaments that I've researched.

I can't remember, off-hand, which tournament first had a top-level round on a Sunday.

Maybe the Dutch were first?


Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: More likely the French.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <R2.x and R3.x = 1851.06.??

R4.x = 1851.07.??>

Yes, this is correct.

<There might be some uncertainty for end R3/beginning R4, but it's not too likely. Nor significant, as an inexact date might suggest some uncertainty of a day or two.>

Provincial papers were in the habit of unattributed copying of reports from bigger and better titles, and the necessary delay in recycling sometimes leads to confusion.

Dec-10-16  zanzibar: <MissS> yes, but I think I exhausted the ILN reportage for info.

So where else can hope reside?

It's unfortunate the coverage tampered off in the later stages of the tournament (at least, iirc, not having worked on this for awhile now).

Jun-27-17  zanzibar: Rookhouse has this interesting (but unsourced) Anderssen quote about the playing conditions:

<Additionally, the playing conditions were reportedly bad enough to inspire the following quote from Anderssen:

Things were not particularly comfortable; tables and chairs were both small and low; the large boards stuck out over both edges of the tables; any space near the player was taken away by the person recording the moves; in short, there was not the slightest amount of free space on which one could support one’s head which might be so full of care during the hard struggles.>

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <So where else can hope reside?>

I've been looking at some reports in the <Morning Chronicle>, a London daily, via the <BNA>. The print quality is generally poor, which hampers its searchability - presumably explaining why I wasn't aware of its coverage before - but I've already found some useful information regarding game dates.

Feb-19-19  zanzibar: <MS> unlikely I'll be able to access that source anytime soon.

But I'd encourage you to further the work, either here or on your own blog, and take up the work from where it was left off.


Feb-19-19  zanzibar: PS- There's only a select few "elite" posters I'd share this tip with, but <MS> is one of them, as concerns historical newspapers...

For some issues, particularly old German/Austrian newspapers, the layout can be extremely dense - tight multiple columns across the page, with just a brief mention of a chess item in a passing paragraph, often without a heading.

So, even knowing the page, the info can be hard to find - especially if in a foreign language.

<A useful aid, then, is to add a column number to the page citation, e.g. p6 -> p6c4>

Not often needed, but quite a convenience when it is.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <There's only a select few "elite" posters I'd share this tip with, but <MS> is one of them, as concerns historical newspapers...>

Thanks, we'll just keep it between ourselves. Incidentally, no need to put elite between quotation marks - if I'm not part of the elite, the word has no meaning.

Feb-19-19  hashtag: 3l173 m0n0l06u35
Feb-20-19  zanzibar: <MS> don't let it give you a big head, but I've always put you in a "special" category, all your own!

* * * * *

<hashtag> what is that?

Gotta wonder if cryto-posts should be item #12. Hmmm...

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <<MS> don't let it give you a big head, but I've always put you in a "special" category, all your own!> #metoo

Started a collection: Game Collection: London 1851

Work in progress...

<<hashtag> what is that?> Just my Russian handler. #callyoulater

Feb-20-19  zanzibar: Looks like a good start. Might that be your first <CG> tournament in the making?!
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: I'm interested in historical precedents for use of the knock-out format in other sports or pastimes. What about mediaeval jousting tournaments or even the ancient Olympic Games?

Wikipedia is singularly unhelpful:

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <MissScarlett> Or maybe you didn't look in the right place in Wikipedia:

The ancient Olympic pankration is described as a 16-player, 4-round knock-out event with the pairings selected by drawing of lots.

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <MissScarlett> One finds random sources on the web that claim that mideaval jousting used elimination contests, but without citing authoritative sources.

For example "Joust a plaisance - A series of elimination jousting contests which were held over over several days. An overall jousting winner would be determined"

Other ancient civilizations like Egypt, China and India had sports competitions, but I couldn't quickly find any details about their tournament rules. You'd have to look for specialized academic literature.

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