Tuesday, 29 November 2016

S Ingle mistake


Not-at-all-bad article by Sean Ingle on the Guardian website last weekend and it seems a shame to draw attention to a serious blooper in the piece. But of course I'm going to do it anyway.


Instead of the "encouraging" that closes the second sentence, Ingle should just have repeated the "wishful thinking" that ended the first one. Unless he's working from a previous completely unknown source, his figures are the ones that were debunked here three years ago - which were so made up, the story from which they derived turned out to be using itself as the source for the figure it quoted.

Monday, 28 November 2016

No possible legitimate purpose

What with all the excitement in New York, little attention has so far been paid to a really quite important development in chess politics which, as it happens, took place on the day of the opening ceremony. This coincided with the Court for Arbitration in Sport issuing their judgement in the case of FIDE v Ignatius Leong, who (along with Garry Kasparov) had been found guilty of breaching the FIDE Code of Ethics.

FIDE-politics-watchers will recall that this involved a secret agreement between Kasparov's camp and Mr Leong by which the Kasparov Chess Foundation paid the ASEAN Chess Academy (controlled by Mr Leong) a very large sum of money in return for his securing Asian votes for Kasparov in the then-upcoming FIDE Presidential election. This agreement was made public in the New York Times, controversy followed and so did the Ethic Commission hearing.

Leong was evidently displeased with the verdict, took it to CAS who subsequently pronounced their verdict. Their judgement was then published on FIDE's website, perhaps unsurprisingly since it is very favourable to FIDE's original verdict and very, very unfavourable to Ignatius Leong, and by extension, to Garry Kasparov.

I strongly recommend that you read the whole thing (there's a fair bit of verbiage towards the start, but it gets easier) but you may find, as I did, that paragraph 53 leaps out at you. The expression "he sold his vote" can have this effect.


He sold his vote. And to whom did he sell his vote?

Friday, 25 November 2016

Wot a Lot

Oh no! Another Man Ray chess set.

Pic by MS 
Though it is rather beautiful, just like another one here.

The specimen shown above was owned, until recently, by...

Thursday, 24 November 2016

The king stay the king

Potentially interesting show on BBC Radio Four at 11 this morning, or any time after 1130 if you want to listen on iPlayer.


Last time (to my knowledge) that Radio Four caught up with the king of chess was in 1999, or maybe very early 2000, when there was an item on a sports programme that I can't even remember the name of, or anything at all about it for sure, other than that I do at least remember listening to it (and the Newcastle kitchen where I heard it). I think Sarah Hurst and Jon Speelman might have been on it, but I'm afraid other people's memories will have to compensate for the failings of my own.

Anyway these days we no longer have to listen live, which is just as well as I'll be working when the show's on. Matter of fact I probably won't get to hear it until Saturday. So if anybody hears it before then and has anything to say about it, please do use the space below, and don't worry about spoilers.

I imagine Kirsan will survive whatever the programme has to say though. He might even survive a lot longer as king of chess than Magnus Carlsen will, and I'm not sure I would have said that a few months ago.

Monday, 21 November 2016

My eyes

I had no idea FiveThirtyEight were writing about Carlsen-Karjakin.

The latest piece (as I write) is called Are Computers Draining The Beauty Out Of Chess? and I am afraid my initial reaction was "no, you are", because the diagrams - particularly those heading the pieces - are some of the most garish, unfriendly efforts I've seen in quite a while, as well as unnecessarily confusing the eye of the reader by refusing to mark out the edge of the board.

The pink one is the worst.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Renowned

Just a reminder that the "renowned grandmaster" whose simultaneous display is advertised here by the English Chess Federation


is "renowned" in English chess circles for a number of unsavoury reasons, and one of them is - as I mentioned last time this occurred -
Ray Keene is not a member of the Federation. He has not been a member of the organisation for two decades. This is because he was obliged to leave the Federation when he was accused of defrauding that organisation of a sizeable sum of money.
As I also wrote:
Ray Keene has never made any proper explanation of his actions. Nor has he returned the money.
I'm all in favour of giving money and publicity to the Multiple Sclerosis Society. Suppose we offer to donate the missing money to that very same charity whenever Ray gets round to coughing up?

And until that time arrives, suppose we tell the renowned plagiarist and spiv that he can get stuffed?

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Serious injury or death may occur

Further to Sunday's posting concerning Nigel Short's repeated comments to an arbiter that he was lucky not to suffer physical violence at Nigel's hands, my thanks to Sean O'Keefe for drawing my attention to this tweet from September.


Sunday, 13 November 2016

Lucky not to have been physically assaulted


I was flicking through New In Chess at half-time in this afternoon's match and the clip above happened to catch my eye. Here's some of the same passage, in Nigel's piece itself (it's from his notes to his game against Li Chao rather than his Short Stories feature).


So far, so very Nigel, with insults over the place. He likes to dish it out, does Nigel, but call him Nosher and you'll see how good he is at taking it. Still, "ginger-haired moron" is small beer by Nigel's standards. There's worse to come.

Here's the rest of it.

He can count himself lucky not to have been physically assaulted.

Friday, 11 November 2016

Ricardo Lisias

Ricardo Lisias - born in São Paulo in 1975, obtained a PhD from São Paulo University, then went teaching - "is regarded as one of Brazil's main voices in recent literature" (it says here). He has published short stories (two collections) and several novels.

One of his stories, Evo Morales, features chess in an informed way. It is a disquieting tale, cleverly told - in the voice of a top-class chess-player. It was published originally in Portuguese, and in an excellent English translation in Granta - where, however, you have to subscribe to read it. Another translation, a valiant effort if considerably more clunky, may be found online, and I have reproduced it after the break.

Granta does allow you free access to an autobiographical note by Lisias entitled "My Chess Teacher" which has some interesting observations based on his youthful - and ultimately frustrated - chess career. This must be his FIDE record.

[With thanks to Angus French]

Thursday, 10 November 2016

Falta de credibilidad redux

Readers may recall that just last week this blog reported on - and took issue with - a fierce attack by Leontxo García, chess correspondent of El País, on a study carried out by the Education Endowment Foundation on the Chess in Primary Schools programme. Among other unfavourable comments, he said that the Foundation
should never have designed the study with such an absence of rigour - it should have suspended it, or altered it, on seeing how it was turning out and never should have published it, on the grounds of its complete lack of credibility.
As I said at the time, I am far from sure that Sr Garcia is quite the right person to be talking about rigour in academic studies or their interpretation. But that ad hominem aside, would it not be interesting to seek the opinion of the Dr Kevan Collins who is head of the EEF, and is among the individuals to be criticised by García in El País?

Perhaps it would. So I did.
To: Dr Kevan Collins
31 October 2016

Dear Dr Collins

Sorry to bother you. My name's Justin Horton and I'm a chess blogger. I am writing about the recent Education Endowment Foundation study into the Chess in Schools and Commuities project.

I wonder if you were aware that this study (and your comments on it) has recently been attacked, in quite aggressive terms, in the leading Spanish newspaper El País for, among other things, an alleged "lack of rigour" and "lack of credibility". A link (in Spanish) is here. I don't know if you read Spanish, but I would be interested in your comments!

Yours

Justin Horton

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Raymond Deane: the answers

Yesterday we were looking at Gerald Mangan's caricature of Raymond Deane and asking what was happening on the part of the board that the caricature was obscuring


and what well-known game the position was taken from.

Noting that neither king was castled, that if there was a pawn on d5 we'd be able to see it and assuming that Black would be further behind in development than seemed likely if the f8-bishop was still on that square, I surmised that the bishop was on e7, the queen was on d8 and the d-pawn had gone to d5 and then been exchanged. Also d4 seemed likely for a white pawn and while the other one could be on e4, e3 seemed likelier as otherwise Nxe4 would work. This would give us this....


which, as it turns out, is correct!

Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Raymond Deane

The contemporary Irish composer Raymond Deane mentioned the other day, on social media, that he'd updated his website. Taking a look, I was surprised to see him depicted on a chessboard, baton in hand atop a giant knight - though not totally surprised, since I knew he had an interest in the game.


Naturally I assume that readers are squinting at the point to try and work out what's going on with the squares that are obscured. But assuming Raymond is on f3 and noting that the Black dark-squared bishop can't be seen, the kings are uncastled and if there was a pawn on d5 we'd be able to see it, I think you have a decent chance of reconstructing the position. So:

QUESTION ONE: What do you think the correct position is?

While I was writing this entry, Raymond told me that he thought the position was from a well-known game, but he couldn't remember which one. Having worked out what I thought was a likely correct position, I consulted a database (or more accurately, had a friend look at one) and I think I can identify the game in question. (While it's not first-rank famous, it is a game once annotated by Irving Chernev.) So:

QUESTION TWO: From what game do you think the position is taken?

No doubt somebody with (or without) the help of a database will post the answers in comments, but see if you can guess them without looking. Answers later this week.


[Thanks to Raymond]
[Thanks also to Angus]
[Also potentially of interest] 

Sunday, 6 November 2016

Hundreds of millions online

Hey, what a surprise! As mentioned in comments yesterday, the Financial Times have been talking to Ilya Merenzon.

And what has Ilya Merenzon told them?

Same nonsense Ilya Merenzon usually tells people.


Except this time, the hundreds of millions of us are online.

How does he get away with it?

I guess he gets away with it because the journalists he talks to don't know any better. (Though you'd think they ought to ask themselves, you know, hundreds of millions? Really?)

But shouldn't writers for the Financial Times know better? Isn't knowing better what the Financial Times is for?

Apparently not. It's not the first time.


[Thanks to Matt Fletcher]


Friday, 4 November 2016

Going Back to Bedlam

We have blogged on and off about chess in the asylum ever since Richard Dadd's watercolour painting The Child's Problem appeared at Tate Britain back in 2011. It stimulated an unexpectedly fruitful line of enquiry into a number of inmates/patients who played the game in Bedlam (the London asylum that gave the care of the mentally ill a bad name), and later Broadmoor (its successor incorporating a high security psychiatric hospital).

So, our roll-call of Bedlam/Broadmoor chessers included Richard Dadd himself (celebrated artist and parricide), Edward Oxford (regicide-fantasist), Reginald Saunderson (murderer) and also Robert Coombes, the "Wicked Boy" who murdered his mother but redeemed himself, after release, in the trenches of WW1 (the subject of Kate Summerscale's recent book). We also tracked the story of organised chess among patients in Broadmoor: not only their in-house tournaments and the chess column in the house magazine, but also matches against local clubs - about which we had first-hand accounts from a couple of chessers (still at large) who went over to Crowthorne (40 or so miles west of London) in the 1960/70s to play chess at the hospital - and enjoy the excellent refreshments.

More recently we clocked a reappearance of The Child's Problem in an exhibition dedicated to Richard Dadd, and we were delighted to publish this imagined restoration (by blog reader David Roberts) of the work to its former glory, possibly.


All in all a rich vein to dig. So, when this exhibition...

Running until 15 January 2017

...opened at the Wellcome Institute in London, naturally your blogger hot-footed over, hoping for another opportunity to savour The Problem. Sadly it wasn't on display (although there was another of Dadd's works): nevertheless, this thought-provoking show offered many other fascinating exhibits, including two with a chess flavour - one familiar, the other less so.

Monday, 31 October 2016

Falta de credibilidad

Leontxo García is displeased!


What's he displeased about? Well if you can read Spanish, you don't need me to tell you, but if you can't, it consists of an extended assault on a study by the Education Endowment Foundation, relating to chess in schools as well as the reporting of that study in the Daily Telegraph.

If that sounds like surprisingly old news, that's because it is: the study was published months ago (you may have seen Richard James' comment in August) and the offending Telegraph piece appeared in the middle of July.

Friday, 28 October 2016

So. Farewell Then...

...Phil Chess (27 March 1921 - 18 October 2016) co-founder of Chess Records.

Mr Chess, with Muddy Waters, Little Walter and Bo Diddley.
Michael Ochs Archives

Memorable sounds. Memorable name. Easily confused with Chess Records.

Guardian obit here

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Spot The Difference with Nigel Short

1. NIGEL DOESN'T LIKE RULE, SEPTEMBER
People have said to me that rules are rules. It’s nonsense! When the laws make no sense they can go and fuck themselves!

2. NIGEL LIKES RULE, OCTOBER
You can't just ignore regulations just for the hell of it. There's a reason why they are there.

Irrelevant to this piece, but here Nigel appears to be wearing a suit out of Reggie Perrin

[Image]

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Hundreds of millions again

Ilya Merenzon has a message for us!

Mostly a threatening message, as it goes, and perhaps this blog will get back to the less savoury aspects of Mr Merenzon's communication. Just for now, though, it was hard to miss the little passage at the end of this paragraph:


Ah yes...
...the hundreds of millions of chess fans round the world.
Well, here we go again. I don't suppose it's the last time we'll hear this claim (or similar claims) connected to the world championship match and come to that, it's not the first time Merezon himself has come out with this nonsense.

Actually that short exchange is more revealing now than it seemed at the time, at least as an insight into Ilya Merezon's general approach ("how did you get access to raw data?", he demands, referring to data the public had been invited to access) but it also means we know that when Ilya Merenzon makes claims like this, he knows very well that he's making it up.

Monday, 17 October 2016

h7 is a place

White to play and fail to win.


Jones-Swiercz, Millionaire Monday final, first game: White is winning after 66. Re8 though after 66...f4+ 67. Kf2 Rd2+ he needed to play either of the two moves that won rather than selecting the only one (and hence the Worst Move On The Board) which did not.

I'm not sure what ghosts he saw after 68. Kf1 - it's perhaps easier to see where they might appear after 68. Ke1 Rxg2, though they're just ghosts all the same - but anyway Gawain chose 68. Kg1??


which in setting White up for a check on g2 gives Black just enough time to come round with 68...Kh4 69. e7 Kg3. Now, having selected the only move that drew rather than won, Gawain had to select the only move that drew rather than lost. Unhappily he preferred 70. Rd8?? to 70. Kf1.

Subsequently losing the two game mini-match cost him half the $30,000 prize that he would have got for winning.

Friday, 14 October 2016

Played on Squares (Bloomsbury and Chess) 9: Forster, part 2

This is the second part of an exploration of Edward Morgan Forster's chess - one of the Bloomsbury Group whose chess playing activities we have been documenting in a series of posts beginning here.

From here

We have been trying to keep a chronological grip on our subject - so before we return to the period of the 14-18 War, we'll highlight some passing chess references in his earlier novels...

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Not all that famous then

Paul Doyle at the Guardian unaccountably leaves someone out.

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Demonstrably wrong

Oh dear.

What is Tim Farron up to?


Readers of this blog will be already familiar with Mike Basman's bankruptcy and his subsequent activities, but as Tim Farron MP patently is not - and hasn't apparently made any effort to check - let's just reiterate for the benefit of the prevously underinformed:
  • HMRC aren't "seeking" to do anything, since VAT on chess entry fees is nothing new
  • There has been no "tax hike"
  • There has been no "recent change to its tax status".
  • Mike Basman has been made bankrupt as a result of evading his legal obligations at a net loss to public funds of several hundred thousand pounds.

Monday, 3 October 2016

Short memories

Funny old week, last week. A commentor on last Wednesday's piece drew our attention to this remarkable statement by Susan Polgar.
Using the biggest sexist in the world of chess who has nothing to do with this issue to mouth off this sensitive topic on Twitter is not the way to resolve anything. Some are clearly using this to advance their own personal and political agenda.
Why "remarkable"? Well, remarkable because it's true, which is not necessarily Susan Polgar's style. So we had the simultaneous spectacle of the biggest sexist in the world of chess posing as a defender of women's rights and the biggest fibber in the world of chess calling him out for it. Calling him out for it, when practically nobody else would do so.

Especially not our mainstream journalists, who seemed to have a collective attack of memory loss1 where Nigel's past statements and conduct are concerned.

Short, wrote Julian Barnes in 1994, "has a history of graceless behaviour". So he does, but it's not as if you have to remember back to 1994, or even to have been alive in 1994, to know about that.

You don't even have to go back to 2012 and his piece delighting in sex tourism and the "totty" you could find.

You only have to go back to last year.

Friday, 30 September 2016

Played on Squares (Bloomsbury and Chess) 8: Forster

Last year the BBC ran a TV drama series Life in Squares. It followed, in three episodes, the entangled lives of the Bloomsbury Group - the Bells, the Woolfs, Duncan Grant, Maynard Keynes, and Roger Fry et al. Dorothy Parker - not a member herself, obviously, though she might have gone down well - quipped that they "talked in circles, loved in triangles, lived in squares".


The TV series sparked our own blog series - Played on Squares - in which we tried to answer the straightforward question (one that nobody in the sprawling corpus of Bloomsbury archival analysis, informed commentary, and learned exegesis, had thought to ask), viz: did they play chess?

The answer, we discovered, was an unavoidable "yes". The Bloomsberries admitted to chess in their diaries, and their memoirs; they documented and commented on their obsessive playing of, and sometime brazen cheating at (Roger Fry was exposed as the culprit), our favourite game; one of them (Fry again) used it as a teaching aid in his lessons on aesthetics; two of them were portrayed in oils at the board (and another was sketched in situ), and several of them were photographed in flagrante. One - Leonard Woolf - almost joined a chess club, and another actually did - although this is stretching a point as she was only a Bloomsbury-sibling and not a Bloomsbury-proper. However, as she also played in tournaments and even turned up in the BCM - snapped playing in a simul. against Vera Menchik (result unknown) - she (Marjorie Strachey) was the star turn of our chess-in-Bloomsbury series.

Not that you would have found any of this on the TV. Shocking.

Just after the series closed, our good friend Richard James was kind enough to point out that it was unfinished: there was in fact a Bloomsberry with a well-documented chess interest who we had missed. Also shocking. So, before leaving it any longer, we had better repair this omission and report the chess doings of...

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Heads up

No official announcement yet, but here's an interesting addition to the FIDE Calendar 2017.


Also see, FIDE 2016 General Assembly decisions.


Now the thing about Iran is, it does have rules and regulations that apply to women, ones that do not apply in most other countries, and this is, shall we say,  potentially a matter for concern.

Without any official announcement, let alone one touching on the matters this raises, it's hard to say anything definitive, but I sent an email to the FIDE office to see what they could tell me.
To: office@fide.com
27 September 2016 at 12:07

Dear FIDE

Sorry to bother you. I am a chess writer and a member of the English Chess Federation.

I read on your website that the 2017 Women's World Championship has been awarded to Iran (General Assembly decision GA-2016/31). I am writing to enquire whether women competing, reporting, spectating or attending in any other capacity will be required by their hosts, to wear clothing, for instance the headscarf, that they would not be obliged to wear in their home countries.

Yours sincerely

Justin Horton

Huesca province Spain

They replied, very promptly, as they generally do.

From: FIDE Secretariat office@fide.com
To: Justin Horton
cc: Nigel Freeman
27 September 2016 at 12:14

Dear Justin

From my personal experience, all foreign women are obliged to wear headscarf in all public places in Iran.

best regards

Polina Tsedenova

FIDE Secretariat

You'll perhaps have noticed that while Polina hasn't actually said yes, nor has she said no, and her answer is more along the lines of yes than no. However, I subsequently received an email clarifying that women attending the championship will, indeed, be expected to wear the headscarf whether they like it or not.
From: Nastja Karlovich
To: Justin Horton
cc: Nigel Freeman, FIDE Secretariat
date: 27 September 2016 at 13:53

Dear Mr. Horton!

all competitors will be obliged to respect the laws of the country including the dress requirements.

You can check the UK foreign office for more information:

Best regards, Anastasiya Karlovich

FIDE Press Officer

Now matters relating to the headscarf are sensitive, as are matters relating to Islam, and for this reason commentors are asked to be thoughtful in what they say on the subject*. But it does seem to me that women should not be obliged to wear the headscarf as a condition of competing in, reporting on or simply attending a chess tournament, and if it is a condition of the host country that this occurs, then it probably shouldn't be the host country.

To say so isn't to lecture another country on what laws or customs it should have. It's to say that the laws and customs of the chess world should not be such as to discriminate against women. FIDE shouldn't be doing this: if and when there's a row, they will only have themselves to blame.

[* additionally - anonymous comments will not be permitted, and please do not make this all about a certain English grandmaster.]

[thanks to Chris Rice]
[this piece revised after publication in order to incorporate the final email]

Friday, 23 September 2016

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Basmantics

What's this, do you think?


It's this, is what it is.


Surely not, the reader surely says.

And yet


it surely is.

Monday, 19 September 2016

Holy tax evasion, Basman

Chessbase, 2008

I'd intended to write a piece last weekend about a crochety old English chess master who gets into trouble when he doesn't think the rules apply to him. However, being, in truth, a little more sympathetic to Nigel over that particular issue than I normally am, we'll leave that aside for the moment. Instead, let's talk about Mike Basman.

Why so? Because the popular British IM has got himself into trouble. How so? Take your pick. It's either
  • because over perhaps as long as twenty years, he couldn't be arsed to comply with his legal obligations with regards to tax; or
  • because he is being persecuted by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs
depending on whether you live in the world of reality, or the world as seen, apparently, from inside Mike Basman's head.

The exact details of the saga which have led to Basman's current predicament are not yet entirely clear, the reason for this being that Mike Basman has chosen not to make them entirely clear (which we will get on to, below). Nevertheless the basic outline seems straightforward enough - it appears that
  • the UK Chess Challenge, the competition that Mike Basman has organised since it began in 1996, has failed to charge VAT on entry fees for its competitions, as it was legally obliged to do;
  • this having come to HMRC's attention, they have presented Basman with a bill representing an estimate of the revenue lost to them over a ten year period, which is in the non-trivial amount of £300,000; and
  • as Basman cannot pay this bill, he was made bankrupt on 8 August 2016, thus threatening the future of his competition (leaving aside alone any consequences for himself).
It also appears that despite having been directed to pay this bill at least three years ago, and having his appeal dismissed in contemptuous terms (not just because it fell outwith the period allowed for appeal, but because the grounds for appeal were specious) more than two years ago, Basman nevertheless continued to operate just as he had done previously, right up until his bankruptcy.

I have a view on this, which is that Mike Basman is a fool, a fantasist and a tax evader.

Caption competition waiting to happen

Friday, 16 September 2016

A French Connection

[This is a guest post by  Richard Jamesto whom much thanks. There is a minor edit by MS]  

Photo from the Condé Museum in Chantilly. Taken 1858/9.

Sitting on the left playing chess is Prince Louis of Condé (1845-1866), who was living in Orleans House, in Richmond on Thames, at the time. He developed TB and died in Australia. He was a paternal grandson of King Louis Philippe via Duke Henri of Aumâle.


His opponent is Prince Augustus of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (1845-1907), whose father was a cousin of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert from the Catholic branch of the family. On the maternal side he was a grandson of King Louis Philippe via Princess Clémentine of Orléans.

Watching the game, from left to right:


Prince Pierre, Duke of Penthièvre (1845-1919), a grandson of King Louis Philippe via Prince François of Joinville. Related to the Portuguese royal family and the emperors of Brazil on his mother’s side. “Prince Pierre had a happy childhood as a refugee in England with most of the other members of the House of Orléans, despite the uncertainty of life in exile.” This seems to have been at Claremont, near Esher in Surrey



Prince Philipp of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (1844-1921), the older brother of Prince Ludwig August (see above). Married his cousin, Princess Louise of the Belgians, who was reported to have played chess against Queen Victoria.


Prince Ferdinand, Duke of Alençon (1844-1910), another grandson of King Louis Philippe via Duke Louis of Nemours.


Prince Gaston Count of Eu (1842-1922), the older brother of Prince Ferdinand (see above). His family fled to England after the overthrow of the monarchy in 1848.

So in this picture we have six French princes, all grandsons of King Louis Philippe of France, who reigned between the July Revolution of 1830 and the February Revolution of 1848. He fled the country under the name of “Mr Smith” [no relation - MS] and sought exile in England, settling at Claremont. It seems likely that this photograph was taken at about the time of the funeral of their aunt Hélène, the widow of the King’s eldest son Ferdinand. She died on 18 May 1858 at her home in Richmond, Camborne House, Petersham Road, close to Richmond Bridge. It was later renamed Northumberland House and demolished in 1969. The funeral took place on Saturday 22 May, the cortège travelling from Richmond to the chapel of St Charles Borromeo in Weybridge. All the Orléans princes were in attendance. At the time four of the princes were living in the area: Prince Louis was living at Orleans House while the Princes Gaston, Ferdinand and Pierre were at Claremont. The Princes Philipp and Augustus were living on the continent, possibly in either Austria or Spain.

So perhaps the most likely location for the photograph is Camborne/Northumberland House.

[With thanks again to Richard James. To follow a French music and chess connection, and notes on many more musical chessers besides, go to his series, starting somewhere else, here.]

Lost in History