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Chess AVECDOTES, &c.
him and Bajazet. King John of England
insisted upon concluding his game before [For the Year Book.]
he gave an audience to the deputies from This most ingenious and fascinating Roouen, coming to apprize him that their game is of very great antiquity, and, per- city was besieged. haps, there is no game that can boast so King James 1. styled this game a philosogeneral a study and practice; for, though phic folly. His son, Charles I., was at chess various games on cards may be more when told that the Seots bad finally decommonly pursued in some parts of Eu- termined upon selling him to the English; rope, chess is not only an object of exten- and he did not seem any way discomposed, sive attention in Europe, but played with but coolly continued his game. Charles incomparably more frequency in Asia. XII., of Sweden, when surrounded, in a
Al Amin, khalif of Bhagdat, was carn- house at Bender, by the Turks, barricaded estly employed at this game when his the premises, and then coolly set down to capital residence was on the point of chess: this prince always used the king being taken by assault. Tamerlane the more than any other piece, and thereby Great is recorded to have been engaged at lost every game; not perceiving that the chess during the decisive battle leineen king, although the most considerable of all, is impotent, either to attack his ene with the testimony of the Persians, who, mies or to defend himself, without the though as much inclined as other nations assistance of his people.
to appropriate the ingenious inventions of The game is said to have been invented foreign people, unanimously agree that by the wife of Kavan, king of Lanca the game was imported from the west of (Ceylon), in order to amuse him with an India, in the sixth century of our æra.”. image of war (field war, I suppose), while The honorable Daines Barrington, in his metropolis was closely besieged by his “ Historical Disquisition on the game Kama, in the second age of the world. of Chess,* asserts and maintains the claim According to sir William Jones's Chrono- of the Chinese as inventors. Du Halde logy of the Hindoos, Kama appeared on cites a Chinese treatise, by which it apearth 3800 years ago.
pears that it is the favorite game of that The Chinese draw a river on the chess- country, and a Chinese MS. is in existboard, but they have no piece representing ence, which relates that, 379 years after a ship, which the Hindoos have, and which the time of Confucius, or 1965 years has the power of a modern bishop. The ago, Hung Cochu, king of Kiangnan, sent Chinese, instead of a ship, use a chariot. an expedition into the Shense country,
The Chinese call this game choke-choo- under the command of a mandarin, called hong-ki (the play of the science of war). Hansing, to conquer it. After one sucThe Burmhan name for chess is chit-tha- cessful campaign, the soldiers were put reen, a term applied by them either to a into winter quarters, where, finding the generalissimo, or warfare; an etymolo- weather much colder than they had been gist might perhaps trace it as a corruption accustomed to, and being also deprived of the Sanscrit cha-tur-anga (the four of their wives and families, the army in angas, or members, of an army). The general became clamorous to return home. Persians' game and table are both called Hansung, upon this, revolved in his mind shatrang, or, more commonly, shutrung. the bad consequences of complying with
The piece we call the queen, the hon. their wishes. The necessity of soothing Daines Barrington derives from the his troops, and reconciling them to their Persian pherz, or general, and exposes the condition, in order to complete his operabsurdity of calling this piece a queen, ations in the following year, appeared by asking how we are to metamorphose a urgent, and therefore, after much consifoot soldier, or pawn, into a queen, as deration, he invented the game of chess, admitted in the English game.
The as well to amuse his men in their vacant blunder appears to have arisen from hours, as to inflame their military ardor, French gallantry. Vierge, in French, is the game being wholly founded on the virgo; and, consorting with the king, they, principles of war... The stratagem sucby a very natural transition, made their ceeded. The soldiers forgot, in their virgin a queen.
mimic contests, the inconveniences of The bishop (formerly fil, an elephant), their post. In the spring the general the knight (originally aswa, horse), the took the field again, and in a few months rooks (at first rat'haan, armed chariot, or added the rich country of Shense to the rookh, a hero), and the pawn (from peon, kingdom of Kiangnan, by the defeat and an attendant), are the pieces which, with capture of its king, Choupayuen. On: the king and queen, are played with in this conquest Hung Cochu assumed the European games.
title of emperor, and Choupayuen slew C. J. HAMPTON.
himself. March 2, 1831.
Of the European nations the Italians Chess MEMORANDA.
were the first who became acquainted
with this ingenious game, which was [For the Year Book.]
probably introduced among them by the The learned Hyde has undertaken to first crusaders, who, before the destruction show, from undoubted authorities, that of the eastern empire, often remained for chess was first invented in India, and
some time at Constantinople. passed from thence to Persia, before the
Hyde supposes that chess was first year of Christ 576, and from Persia to known in England about the time of the Arabia.
conquest, because the court of Exchequer Sir William Jones is of the same opi-. nion. He says, “ If evidence were required to prove this fact, we may be satisfied
* Archælogia, ix.
was then first established; but we find in “ The draught of the kyng, and how Gale's edition of Hist. Ramsieins (c. 85) he meueth him in the eschequer.Ca. ii that, when bishop Etheric obtained ad- “ Of the meuyng of the quene, and mission to Canute the great, upon some how she yssueth out of her place.Ca. iii urgent business, about midnight, he found “ Of the yssue of the alphyns. Ca. • iii the king and his courtiers engaged at play, “Of the meuyng of the knyghtes. Ca. some at dice, and others at chess. From “Of the yssue of the rookis, and of Hist. Olai Magni (p. 572), we learn that her progresse. Ca. when a young nobleman applied for per- " Of thyssue of the comyn peple, mission to pay his addresses to his daugh- whom the pawnes represente. Ca. vii ter, the parent commonly made a trial of “ Of the epilogacion, and recapitulahis temper by playing with him at dice cion of thys book. Ca. or chess, before he gave him an answer. The book ends with these words :-"And
From the treatise entitled “ Ye game by this maner it happend that the kyng, yt Chesse," and printed by Caxton, in that tofore tyme had ben vyctous, and 1474, it appears that this game was not disordynate in his lyuyng, was made iust uncommon during the reign of Edward and vertuous, debonayr, gracious, and ful IV. The mention, and especially the of vertues vnto all peple. And a man extreme rarity, of this book, may excuse that lyuyth in thys world wythout vertoes, the following extract from it.
lyueth not as man, but as a beste. Thenne “ This book is deuyded and departed into
late every man, of what condicion he be four traytyes and partyes.
that redyth or hereth this litel book redde, •« The first traytye.
take therby ensaumple to amende hym.
Explicit, per Caxton.” This is the first “ How the play of chesse was fyrst book that was ever printed in England. founden,and vnder what kyng. Cap. i
It is certain that chess was a fashion“ Who fonde first the play of the able amusement in most houses of rank, chesse. Ca.
ii in the time of Richard III. Elizabeth “ Wherefore the play was fonden was a chess player, and Charles the Marand maad. Ca.
tyr is supposed to have been a player at “ The second traytye.
ihis game, though he advises his son “ The forme of a kyng, his manners against it because it is “overwise." and estate. Ca.
i In France this game seems to have “ The fourme and manners of a been known at an earlier period than in quene. Ca...
ii England. Carte avers that, at a chess « The condicion and forme of the match between Henry I., before his accesAlphyns. Ca. .
iii sion to the throne of England, and Louis “ The ordre of chyualrye of knyght- le Gros, son of Philip of France, which
hode, her offycers and manners. Ca. iii took place at Philip's court, in 1087, The forme and manner of rookes.Ca. Louis having lost several games to Henry, “ The thyrd traytye.
and much money, threw the chess men at “ The offices and maners of labour- Henry's face, who retaliated the affront ers. Ca ..
i by flooring Louis with the board, and was “The manner and offyce of a smyth.Ca. ii proceeding to kill him outright, when his “ Thoffice of notaries, aduocates, elder brother, Robert, timely interposed.
scriueners, and drapers or cloth- John of Salisbury relates that, in a battle makers. Ca.
iii between the French and English, in 1117, “ The manners of marchauntes and
an English knight, seizing the bridle of chaungers, Ca.
jii Louis le Gros, and crying out “ the king's “ The forme of physiciens, leches, taken," Louis struck him to the ground
spycers, and appotycaryes. Ca. with his sword, saying, “ Ne scais tu pas “Of tauerners, hostelers, and vitail- qu'aux echecs on ne prend pas le roy?” lers. Ca. .
1111 & Dost thou not know that at chess the “ Of kepers of townes, receyuers of king is never taken ?" In the reign of
custom, and tollenars. Ca.. vii Charles V., of France, the king, according “ Of messagers, currours, rybauldes, to Froissart, played at this game with the and players at the dyse. Ca. viii duke of Burgundy. “ The fourth traytye.
It has been shown that this game was “ Of the chesse-borde in genere, how popular among the English, before the it is made. Ca...
introduction of cards; this may account
for the “checquers” placed at the doors before the rook on the right side of the of public houses, which might have ori- King, for as much as this pawn apperginally been intended to advertise the peo- taineth to serve the vicar or lieutenant of ple that their favorite amusement could be the King, and other officers under him, of enjoyed within. Brand, however, is of a necessaries of victual. And this manner different opinion; "the checquers,” saith of people is figured and ought to be made he, “ were originally intended, I should in the form and shape of a man, holding suppose, for a kind of draught-board, in his right hand a spade or shovel, and a called tubles, and showed that there that rod in the left hand.' The spade or shovel game might be played. From their color, is to delve and labour therewith the earth, which was red, and the similarity to a and the rod is to drive and conduct withal lattice, it was corruptly called the red the beasts unto her pasture. Also, he lettuce, which word is frequently used by ought to have on his girdle a crooked ancient writers to signify an ale-house." hatchet for to cut off the superfluities of · These necessarily hasty and imperfect the vines and trees.” observations may conclude with honest “ The second Pawn, that standeth before Caxton's “ Description of the Pieces and the knight on the right side of the King, Pawns," as it stands with its modernised hath the form and figure of a man as a autography, in the Rev. T. Frogual Dib- Smith, and that is reason; for it apperdin's “Typographical Antiquities." taineth to the knight to have bridles, sad
“Description of the Pieces. dles, spurs, and many other things made “ The King must be thus made: for he by the hands of smiths; and (he) ought must set in a chair clothed in purple, to hold a hammer in his right hand, and crowned on his head ; in his right hand in his left hand a dolabre ; and he ought to a sceptre, in his left hand an apple of have on bis girdle a trowel.”
“ The third Pawn, which is set before “ Thus ought The Queen to be made: the Alphyn on the right side, ought to be she ought to be a fair lady, sitting in a figured as a clerk, and it is reason that he chair, and crowned with a crown on her should be so (here the reasons, not very head, and clad with a cloth of gold, and a interesting ones, are specified); and this mantle above furred with ermine; and pawn ought to be made and figured in this she should sit on the left side of the King, manner: he must be made like a man that for the amplections and embracings of holdeth in his right hand a pair of shears, her husband.”
or forcetis (forceps), and in the left a “The AlpuYNs (or Bishops] ought to great knife, and on his girdle a penner and be made and formed in manner of judges inkhorn,and on his ear a pen to write with.” sitting in a chair, with a book open before “ The fourth Pawn is set before the their eyes; and that is because that some King, and is formed in the form of a causes be criminal, and some civil.” man holding in his right hand a balance,
“The KNIGHT ought to be made all and the weight in the left hand, and before armed upon an horse, in such wise that him a table, and at his girdle a purse full he have an helm on his head, and a spea of money, ready for to give to them that in his right hand, and covered with his require it; and by this people be signified shield, a sword and a mace in his left side; the merchants of cloth, linen, woollen, and clad with an hawberk, and plates before of all other merchandizes.” his breast, leg-harness on his legs, spurs “ The fifth Pawn, that is set before the on his heels, on his hands his gauntlet, his Queen signifieth the physician, spicer, and horse well broken and taught, and apt to apothecary, and is formed in the figure of battle, and covered with arms."
a man; and he is set in the chair as a “ Tue Rooks, which be vicars andl egates a master, and holdeth in his right hand a to the King, ought to be made like a knight book; and an ample, or a box with ointupon a horse, and a mantel and hood ment in his left hand; and at his girdle furred with mencuyer, holding a staff in his instruments of iron and of silver, for his hand.”
to make incisions, and to search wounds "Description of Pawns.
and hurts, and to cut apostumes.". “ The first Pawn that is in the play of “ The sixth Pawn, which standeth before the chess, signifieth a man of the Common the Alphyn on the left side, is made in this People, for they be all called piesons ; that form; for it is a man that hath the right is as much as to say, footmen. And then hand stretched out as to call men, and we will begin at the pawn which standeth holdeth in his left hand a loaf of bread,