The History of Chess: From the Time of the Early Invention of the Game in India Till the Period of Its Establishment in Western and Central Europe

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W. H. Allen & Company, 1860 - Chess - 312 pages
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This is a lovely 1860 book with a normal chess diagram on the back hard cover and the chaturanga 4 team diagram on the front.The coloured chaturanga layout next to the title page has a yellow set in the top LH, a black set in the top RH, a green set in the bottom LH and a red set on the bottom RH. If you buy a later edition it will not have the coloured diagram and it will be difficult to work out play from page 16 onwards.There is a good black & white chaturanga diagram on page 39 which will help.
The book has all the creation histories and p.15 where Forbes suggests the game was from India 3000 years before our era resulted in some contrary views. It has 60 pages of Appendices and covers all viewpoints to 1860 thoroughly. He believed India to be the birthplace of chess but gives much information on Chinese chess which became topical when David Li's book'The Genealogy of Chess' appeared in 1998. Most historians still think the game came from India but Mr. Li makes a strong case for China.
The 1860 copy has 18 chapters and 6 Appendices in its 372 pages and is on good paper, well printed with large lettering.Forbes (1798-1868) was a Scots Professor of Oriental Languages at Kings College London..Bob Meadley

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This is a very informative book and provides great insight into how chess came to be.




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Page 178 - At the nuptials of the same prince, a thousand pearls of the largest size were showered on the head of the bride, and a lottery of lands and houses displayed the capricious bounty of fortune.
Page 297 - The beautiful simplicity and extreme perfection of the game, as it is commonly played in Europe and Asia, convince me that it was invented by one effort of some great genius ; not completed by gradual improvements, but formed, to use the phrase of Italian critics, by the first •intention...
Page 277 - Brahmins were neither mistaken touching the board, which has a river in the middle to divide the contending parties, nor in the powers of the king, who is entrenched in a fort, and moves only in that space in every direction ; but, what I did not...
Page 165 - O true believers, surely wine, and lots, and images, and divining arrows, are an abomination of the work of Satan; therefore avoid them, that ye may prosper. Satan seeketh to sow dissension and hatred among you, by means of wine and lots, and to divert you from remembering God, and from prayer; will ye not therefore abstain from them?
Page 235 - On the festival of Christmas, the last year of the eighth century, Charlemagne appeared in the church of St. Peter; and, to gratify the vanity of Rome, he had exchanged the simple dress of his country for the habit of a patrician. 98 After the celebration of the holy mysteries, Leo suddenly placed a precious crown on his head...
Page lix - Hindus are not only on a par with the least civilized nations of the Old and New World, but they are plunged almost without exception in the lowest depths of immorality and crime. Considered merely in a literary capacity, the description of the Hindus in the History of British India, is open to censure for its...
Page 166 - ... tables, &c. And they are reckoned so ill in themselves, that the testimony of him who plays at them is, by the more rigid, judged to be of no validity in a court of justice. Chess is almost the only game which the Mohammedan doctors allow to be lawful (though it has been a doubt with some...
Page 253 - The King does not Castle, but is allowed the move of a Knight once in the game; not, however, to take any piece, nor can he exercise this privilege after having been once checked.
Page 182 - Arabian learning shone with a brighter lustre, and continued to flourish to a later period, than in the schools of the East. Cordova, Seville, and Granada, rivalled each other in the magnificence of their academies, colleges, and libraries.
Page lvi - ... merit of not being in this respect inferior to other nations. Their games are very numerous, and for the most part very ingenious ; they are divided into the sedentary and gymnastic. It is a curious fact, and worthy of notice, that among the first is the game of chess, which they call comican, and which has been known to them from time immemorial. The game of quechu, which they esteem highly, has a great affinity to that of backgammon, but instead of dice they make use of triangular pieces of...

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