Online checkers library.

General Discussion about the game of Checkers.

Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Sun Nov 02, 2014 2:05 pm

Added four more books to the Straight Checkers section, Gould' Second Edition (419 pages) took a long time to cut and clean.
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Wed Nov 05, 2014 3:37 am

I found this old (1868) catalog of books by Bernard Quaritch, over 1100 pages listing all kind of books. Found a Chess page that also lists checkers books.
Obviously book size is enormous (100mb) even before I tried to OCR it. Payne is listed twice, apparently there was a reprint in 1758.
Image
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Sun Nov 09, 2014 1:02 pm

A kitten playing with checkers
Sorry this site does not provide for embedding videos
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Sat Nov 22, 2014 12:18 pm

It seems registration achieved its goal to weed out unwanted attention, to test that I am lifting login requirement, let me know of any signs of attacks
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Fri Dec 05, 2014 12:25 am

As I said before most checkers books are not written to make money, the market is too small for that, most books are written as a culmination of the life-long pursuit of knowledge, of battles and discoveries, to leave one's contribution to the game. One such book was recently written by the Russian checkers composer Peter Matus. He first announced his intent to print 100 copies promising to send the first 50 books to all who ask in advance, with other 50 given as gifts to close friends. I wrote to him and he provided me with an electronic original for the library. Some other authors also sent in the originals of their books, and some decided to abort printing expenses and post their books in the library instead.
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Sat Dec 06, 2014 12:05 pm

Providence Public Library http://www.provlib.org/checkers-or-draughts-collection

The Hanes Checkers Collection

The Hanes Checkers Collection came to the Library by bequest in 1923. Mr. Edward B. Hanes of Oak Bluffs, Massachusetts, formed one of the largest collections of books on checkers ever assembled. There are some 560 volumes in the collection, the earliest of which is dated 1572. The collection contains books on checkers in many languages, a number of scarce periodicals and several scrapbooks of newspaper clippings of checkers games.
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I wonder what was that book from 1572? The oldest book in the OCL is from 1597, by Lorenzo Valls in the Spanish room. There is also an English translation of Alfonso X 's Book of Games (1283) by Tristan d'Avignon but no original.
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby George Hay on Sat Dec 06, 2014 1:51 pm

Jake, thanx for the info on the Hanes Checkers Collection in the Providence Public Library in Rhode Island, USA.
I see the Alfonso X book is in the OCL History, Bibliography section. Figure 91 shows "A Game of Twelve Man's Morris" aka Alquerque.
The text has a brief incomplete description of the rules, but enough to show it is the ancestor of checkers as it is played today.
The OCL History, Bibliography section has an incredible collection of checkers and related games history books!

--George Hay
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Sun Dec 07, 2014 12:15 pm

Hi George,

I looked at the "Twelve Man's Morris", Figure 91, it does not look like checkers, only one open square.

My brilliant European consultant (who wishes to stay anonymous) sent in a book titled 'Il nobilissimo et antiqvissimo givoco Pythagoreo nominato Rythmomachia, cioe battaglia de consonantie de nvmeri, ritrouato per vtilità, & solazzo delli studiosi', written by Francesco Barozzi in 1572, he translates the title to 'The noble and very old Pythagorean game called Rythmomachia, that battle of consonantie of numbers, found by utility, & solazzo of the scholars' in response to me asking about the 1572 book as the possible match.
He follows with:
Rithmomachia was a medieval game played in a 8x16 board. Please see some rules in the following links:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rithmomachy
http://www.gamecabinet.com/rules/Rithmomachia.html
http://jducoeur.org/game-hist/game-recon-rhyth1.html

If you search the word 'movement' in the second link, you will find a 'regular move' that resembles with the move of a king in English draughts (at least I saw this viewing the diagramme). The game adds more complexity with the fact of introducing numbers, but MAYBE some moves of the pieces have similarities with some moves of American checkers. Who knows?

Unfortunately the old books are often dirty - dust and ink from the neighboring pages. I just spent 2 hours cleaning the title page (where I could reach with the erasor)
Before and after
Image Image
That thing above E in CIOE - I do not know if that is an apostrophe or dirt to remove
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby George Hay on Sun Dec 07, 2014 3:19 pm

Hi Jake, that is a very interesting 8x16 game with elements of Go (capture by oblivion --by surrounding), and Shoji (turning the enemy--by turning the piece over to your color). The mathematical part of the game is very interesting, some basic algebra skill is needed to play the game! The "Round" moves like a King in Anglo-American Checkers, and also like a Queen in Chess from the Middle Ages. There is a Stacking King of sorts, and from there the rules get very complex!
For me, the "Twelve Man Morris" in the Alfonso X book is very significant, as it adds substantially to the fairly
modern theory that checkers comes from "Twelve Man Morris," aka "Alquerque." Draughts historian Dr. Arie van der Stoep shows that Alquerque was draughts played on a lined board, but disappered when draughts was transferred to a checkerboard. This challenges the conventional wisdom that draughts (checkers) comes from chess, specifically the old chess queen with its one square diagonal move.
This is the homepage of his website:
http://www.draughtshistory.nl

--George Hay
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Sun Dec 07, 2014 3:37 pm

In Philippines they still use the lined board, but they play by Pool Checkers rules.
Image

The Alquerque is live and well, Dr. Govert Westerveld wrote a book on it recently, he is argueably the most prolific author on the history of checker games https://govertwesterveld.selz.com/
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby George Hay on Mon Dec 08, 2014 7:57 am

Jake, the lined board used in the Philippines is, as far as I can tell, identical to the lined board promoted by S.T. Livermore in
Checkers Improved (Hartford Conn, 1888). Of course, these lined boards have 32 "spots," unlike the old "Alquerque"
board with its 25 "spots." (I call them ''spots" because that is what S.T. Livermore calls them.) Checkers Improved is in the Straight
Checkers Section of the OCL. :)

Thanx for the update on the work of Draughts & Chess historian Dr. Govert Weterveld, I have not checked his website in a while,
until now. He has links to checkers/draughts history that are "In Preparation."
http://www.damasweb.com

--George Hay
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Mon Dec 08, 2014 9:23 am

Thanks George, I did not realize Alquerque uses 25 spots.
One thing about the Philippines board - they set the board slightly at the angle, I like this idea, helps align your board vision.
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:49 am

Another great contributor, also wishing to stay anonymous, sent in his thoughts on the subject:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jake,

Regarding your discussion on the ACF forum, 12 men's morris and alquerque are distinct games, although the name "morris" may at one time have been used to refer to any similar game with stones on a grid-like board (as opposed to backgammon), and both use 12 stones per player, so the confusion is understandable.

9 and 12 men's morris are similar, and have 24 points per board. This page shows a 12 men's morris board, a little way down the page:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nine_Men%27s_Morris

This one shows alquerque, with 25 points, as George Hay mentions:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alquerque

The really interesting thing, in my mind, is that an alquerque board is four 3 men's morris boards connected together, and 3 men's morris is an obvious elaboration of tic tac toe. So tic tac toe may be the great great grandfather of checkers! Some people on the ACF forum, such as Jay Hinnershitz, may not be crazy about that notion, but there it is...

Also mentioned by George Hay, I believe, this book on your site shows a board similar to the ones you showed from the Philippines, with 32 points, on page 15:

http://checkersusa.com/books/straight/L ... d_1888.pdf

This is logically and topologically the same as a checker board; it just looks different. Another way of thinking about a checker board is the Lallement board, shown on OMOCH:

http://www.online-museum-of-checkers-hi ... /id27.html

In addition to Westerveld and van der Stoep, Parlett's "The Oxford History of Board Games" provides another interesting perspective on the history of the game.

Regards,
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Tue Dec 09, 2014 2:14 pm

Alan Millhone name is in big red letters everywhere, I expected to see his presence by now
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Re: Online checkers library.

Postby tgf on Wed Dec 10, 2014 10:06 am

Another discovery by our Spanish friend - a German translation of Payne's book from 1800!
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