"A CHESS PLAYER SHOULD HAVE AN EQUAL SHARE OF CONFIDENCE AND DIFFIDENCE": WILLIAM LEWIS' TREATISE ON THE GAME OF CHESS, 1844 FIRST EDITION
LEWIS, William. A Treatise on the Game of Chess… To Which Are Added, Twenty-five New Chess Problems on Diagrams. London: A.H. Baily and Co., 1844. Octavo, 19th-century three-quarter red morocco, gilt-decorated spine, raised bands, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt. $650.
First edition of Lewis' popular chess manual, with 25 illustrated chess problems at the rear, handsomely bound in morocco-gilt by E. Watson.
Lewis was undefeated as the operator of the "automated" chess-playing manikin 'the Turk' in 1819; he made his name as a chess player by winning a match against top-ranked French chess master Deschapelles in 1821. Inventor of the Lewis counter-gambit, Lewis translated chess manuals by Greco (1819) and Carrera (1822) before penning his successful Series of Progressive Lessons (1831) and Second Series of Lessons (1832). "I determined on combining both First and Second Series into one Treatise; hence the present volume, which… contains all that I thought worth extracting from the First and Second Series; but without the copious Remarks given in the former, which will continue to be published for the use of those young players who require a reason for every move" (Preface). Lewis has also added to his Treatise "many important discoveries and improved methods of attack and defense… among the most conspicuous is the new Attack in the Muzio Gambit" (Preface). Armorial bookplate; binder's ticket.
Lower corners gently bumped. A fine copy in handsome morocco-gilt.