THE LIFE AND CHESS OF PAUL MORPHY

 


 

St. Dennis Hotel
New York Nov. 16, 1857

My dear Charles,

   Your very kind letters have reached their destination and I am happy to state in reply that with the exception of Walker's "One Thousand Games" I shall procure you all the chess books you wish to have.
   You must be appraised of the final of the final result of the match between Paulsen and myself: the score at the termination of the contest, stood as follows: Morphy 5, Paulsen 1, drawn 2. I would have a good deal to write about, but prefer postponing all I might tell you until my return to New Orleans. Some statements will surprise you. I shall probably leave next week, unless detained (and it is very likely I will be detained) by some match with one of the first class New York players at the odds of Pawn and move.
   For reasons which it would be too long to enumerate in a letter, but which I will explain to your  satisfaction when I return home, I see fit to challenge any New York players to a match at a pawn and move. If the challenge is accepted, and I have no doubt it will be, I hope that the New Orleans players will be prepared to back me. I shall also (and for equally good reasons) challenge all members of the New York Club to play a consultation match with me.
   Do not, however, infer that there exists the smallest degree of ill feelings between myself and most of  the New York players. The truth is my challenge is directed solely to Thompson who possesses no small amount of chess vanity. After losing eight games out of eight on even terms, he is unwilling (with what justice and show of reason I appeal to every chess player to say) to take the odds of a pawn and move which I give to Marache, fully his equal as you know. The result of his conceit is that at present we never play together. With Marache at the above mentioned odds, I have played five games winning three and drawing two. Out of six games contested with Perrin at pawn and two I have won four and lost two. Mr. Thompson seems to fancy it is beneath his dignity to accept odds of a player who has won every game contested
with him, but enough of him. My impression is that I can give him odds and make an even game. We shall see.

Truly yours,
Paul Morphy

P.S.
Do not forget to see Rousseau, my uncle Charles Le Carpentier, (and every New Orleans player willing to stake anything on the result) in reference to this match.
                                                                          P.M.

 

N.B.
[In May, 1857, Morphy played Thompson giving him Knight odds with Thompson winning the first three, but with Morphy winning five of the remaining six. L÷wenthal claimed this was "the most surprising of all the achievements of the American champion  and undoubtedly one of the greatest feats of chess skill ever performed."]


 

 

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