Cafe De La Regence

Start Date: Sep 12, 2015

Finish Date: Jun 6, 2016

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The Cafe de la Regence was a meeting place for chess players in Paris. It was the most famous chess meeting-place for over a century. The building was a coffehouse in the centre of ParisSmile

It was frequented by Philidor, Legall, Povespierre, Anderssen, Keizeritchky, Paul Morphy etc. but not only chess, on his tables Karl Marx and Thomas Enghels were drinking their coffee around 1845 and certainly even amateur chess players, like that young woman who challenged Robespierre to a game of chess and when she won she revealed her identity to plead for the life of her condemned lover, and she got an order for his immediate release.Smile       what chess and good sportmanship can doWink

George Walker, an English master, described the congenial coffee-house in 1840: "Stove-heated to oppression, gas-lighted, mirrors in abundance and slabs of marble to top its tables. On Sunday all keep their hats on, to save space, and an empty chair is worth a ransom. The din of voices shakes the roof as we enter, like a beast-show at feeding time! Can this be chess, the recreation of solitude? We sigh for cotton to stuff our ears. Mocha is brought. We sip. Manners are to be noted and chessmen are to be sketched. The English are the best lookers-on in the world, the French the very worst. They do not hesitate to whisper their opinions freely, to point with their hands over the board, to foretell the probable future, to vituperate the past. I have all but vowed that when next I play chess in Paris, it shall be in a barricaded room. Midnight is long gone. Players are thinning, the garcons yawn, the drums have beaten the round, and the good wives of Paris are airing their husbands' nightcaps. I reluctantly prepare to face the cold. Farewell, at least for a season, to the Cafe de la Regence."Laughing

During Paul Morphy’s famous European adventures in 1858, he made several stops at the famous Cafe de la Regence in Paris, France. Paul Morphy was in Paris one year after the first American Chesscongress, he writed this letterand then he went to Rui Saint Honores at Cafe De La Regence to meet his friends as usualSmile Cool 

 One of Morphy’s encounters at the cafe involved him playing eight of the strong cafe regulars in a blindfold simultanne in the presence of approximately 250 chess fans. After ten hours of play, Morphy had amazingly won six games, drawn two, and lost zero. Wink

It was reported that Morphy never took a break and did not even appear fatigued at the conclusion of play. One of his games from this event is presented below, as annotated by Johann Jakob Lowenthal.Smile His secretary F. T. Edge caught the moment:


"Morphy stepped from the arm chair in which he had been almost immovable for ten consecutive hours with having tasted a morsel of anything, even water, during the whole consecutive period; yet as fresh, apparently, as when he sat down. The English and Americans, of whom there were scores present set up stentorian Anglo-Saxoo cheers, and the French joined in as the whole crowd made a simultaneous rush at our hero. The waiters of the cafe had formed a conspiracy to carry Morphy in triumph on their shoulders, but the multitude was so compact they could not get near him, and finally they had to abandon their attempt. Great bearded fellows grasped his hands, and it was nearly half an hour before we could get out of the cafe. Pierre Morel fought a passage through the crowd by main strength, and we finally got into the street. There the scene was repeated the multitude was greater out of doors than in the cafe, and the shouting, if possible, more deafening..."SmileLaughingCool