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Jones, E. (1931). The Problem of Paul Morphy—A Contribution to the Psycho-Analysis of Chess. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 12:1-23.

(1931). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 12:1-23

The Problem of Paul Morphy—A Contribution to the Psycho-Analysis of Chess

Ernest Jones

Paul Morphy was born at New Orleans on June 22, 1837; he had a sister six and a half years older than himself, one two and a quarter years younger, and a brother two and a half years older. His father was a Spaniard by nationality, but of Irish descent; his mother was of French extraction.

When Paul was ten years old his father, who was himself no mean player, taught him chess. In a year or two he proved himself the superior of his elder brother Edward, his father, his mother's father, and his father's brother who was at that time the chess king of New Orleans. A game is preserved which, according to an eye-witness, he is said to have played victoriously against his uncle on his twelfth birthday while blindfolded. At the same age he played against two masters of international renown who happened to be in New Orleans at the time. One of these was the famous French player Rousseau, with whom he played some fifty games, winning fully nine-tenths. The other was the Hungarian master Loewenthal, one of the half-dozen greatest living players; of the two games played the young Paul won one and the other was drawn.

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