Chess Tournaments

International tournaments become possible by the invention of the steam engine. Comfortable journeys became possible for the upper-middle-class. International transport improved too. Steam boats crossed the Channel at the beginning of the nineteenth century. A railway net existed half-a-century later. International gatherings were stimulated. World exhibitions became a new phenomenon. Scientific and technical progress were shown.

At the height of the British Empire the the first international fair was organized in London at 1851. All countries exhibited their finest creations in the large Crystal Palace in South Kensington. The millions of visitors expected to see a British superiority after the century of economic growth, but France appeared to be a strong competitor. During this fair the first international chess tournament took place. Money and interest were available at that time. Anderssen won the knockout tournament.

This started a tradition of organizing strong tournaments during international fairs. Causing fast development of an international chess life. After the first knock-out tournament, most tournaments were organized as round roubin tournaments. The laws of chess stabilized and became international. Since players could think well over an hour about a move, within a decade the sand glass was introduced and 30 years later the chess clock was invented.
Subpages (29): View All