# The Queen of Chess

• batgirl
• | Aug 4, 2013
• | 9302 views

• 2 years ago

Great research!

• 2 years ago

OBIT,  wow, thanks. You hit the nail on the head.... that was great logical reasoning!  I changed the text.

Here's the actual notation:

• 2 years ago

This is quite a remarkable article, worthy of publication in a serious magazine.  Exceptional research must have gone into it.  Playing through a few of the games, I have a couple of comments:

In the first game, I think it is likely 41...Bb2 is a notation error, for two reasons: (a) the move is illogical, i.e. Black gives up his a-pawn for no apparent reason; (b) the continuation and comment at move 44 makes no sense - instead of maneuvering to win the h-pawn, White can simply take it.  The move was probably 41...Bg7, and the reason for the error is no doubt because the game score originally appeared in descriptive notation.  (Algebraic didn't become the notation of choice until the last 30 years or so.)  In descriptive notation, the move would have been written as 41...B-N2, which can easily be misconstrued as 41...Bb2 instead of 41...Bg7.

As for the long announced mates: not to diminish the accomplishment, but these were in correspondence games.  When playing by mail, it is quite possible to analyze very deeply when forcing sequences are involved.  If a player announced mate in 20 in an OTB game, now that would be really something, at least back then.  You don't see players announce long mates anymore.  Nowadays, it is considered gauche.

• 2 years ago

Excellent article!

NB. I see 23 games (plus 2 problems) by Mrs. Ellen Gilbert, not 24, or am I wrong?

• 2 years ago

Great article. Congratulations

• 2 years ago

Isaac Orchard won the great 1881 tournament in Spartanburg, so beating him was quite an accomplishment.

• 2 years ago

In the first game, 12.Bxd5 Qxd5, 13.Nc3 is much stronger than the move that was actually played.

• 2 years ago

Unbelievable....wonder what type of rating she would have if she were alive today.

• 2 years ago

I have NEVER seen an article written, nor researched so well.  Nor have I ever heard of Mrs. Ellen Gilbert.  This is an excellent work Sarah.  I think I will make a hard copy of this article for my library.  It's too bad that the full pgn's can't be copied with the article.

• 2 years ago

I'm not sure why the opening sentence refers to her by her husband's name, but it doesn't seem at all fitting for this article.

• 2 years ago

Very impressive post.  I had heard of these announced mates in some old anthology, but I'm sure I never saw the games or knew the story behind them.  And I guess you took care of the "few games available" thing, eh, Sarah?  Thanks.

• 2 years ago

I ignored dinner, dessert and company to read this article, and very much enjoyed the story, the research and the writing. Thanks for the great read!

• 2 years ago

Excellent article, as usual. I'd heard the name before, but really knew nothing about her or had any real indication of her strength as a chess player. Thanks!

• 2 years ago

PorcupineIV, there were some great ladies playing chess in the latter part of the 19th century.  England had the Bairds, Nellie Down, the Ladies' Chess Club of London and the 1st Ladies' International TournamentThe USA had the incomparable Ellen Gilbert, Harriet Worral and Nellie ShowalterAll theses ladies excelled in an envronment uninviting to their participation and provide positive examples for any young girl whether a chess player or not.

• 2 years ago

Great article. I will show this to my daughter, in the hope that it will inspire her to even greater triumphs.

• 2 years ago

Great article! I didnt know it was possible to count 35 moves - yet even announce mate in 35. I guess you have to be great blindfold player to do this!

• 2 years ago

Her calculation of a forced mate in 18 moves is brilliant, would love to see how she would've performed if she had know all of today's theory.