Paul Morphy

Morphy in Philadelphia, 1859 Paul Charles Morphy (June 22, 1837 – July 10, 1884) was an American chess player. Living before chess had a formal world championship, he was widely acknowledged to be the greatest chess master of his era. He won the tournament of the First American Chess Congress of 1857, winning matches with each opponent by lopsided margins. Morphy then traveled to England and France to challenge the leading players of Europe. He played formal and informal matches with most of the leading English and French players, and others including Adolf Anderssen of Germany, again winning all matches by large margins. He then returned to the United States, and before long abandoned competitive chess. A chess prodigy, he was called "The Pride and Sorrow of Chess" because he had a brilliant chess career but retired from the game while still young. Commentators agree that Morphy was far ahead of his time as a chess player, though there is disagreement on how his play, and his natural talent, rank compared to modern players. Provided by Wikipedia
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