Sunday, September 29, 2013

First Mention of a Woman in a Palestinian Chess Publication?

Giulio Campi, The Chess Players, Ca. 1530. Source: Web Gallery.
Women in the Yishuv were not too likely to play chess. But it is an open question when the first note of a local female player was made in a Palestinian chess publication. We suggest that Ms. Zipporah Bord (ph. spelling) is the first one.

On 5/11/1931, In Davar's chess column (p. 3), she is told by Marmorosh about the notation used in his column: 'check is designated by a cross...' and so on. This is not the same as being explained the rules of the game, of course; it is quite likely Ms. Bord was already a decent player, and only wanted a clarification about the notations.

As evidence, we submit that the very next week -- Davar, 12/11/1931, p. 3 -- Marmorosh notes her as one of the (correct) solvers of the previous week's chess problem, and is mentioned in later columns as a solver as well.

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