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Franklin Knowles Young : Worst Chess Author of all Time

Franklin Knowles Young: Worst Chess Author of all Time

 Hello Chess for Children Kids!. It me, Mr C. and today we will be discussing Franklin Knowles Young the worst chess author of all times.

No doubt you have heard of the the term GOAT (stands for Greatest of all Time) well I thing we should have another term WOAT) for worst of all time.

There are many terrible chess books but the ones ( yes he had the nerve to write more than one) that stand out as the most disastrously bad books every written were the ones written by Franklin K. Young.

If you want to know a lot about this particular WOAT the definitive article is by the great author Edward Winter which can be found here.

I have also borrowed heavily from Mr Winter’s very informative article.

Why was he the worst?

Why was he so bad? Well he would never use 1 word when he could use 50. Take for example an excerpt from one of his books:

Please read before you look at the diagram then take a minute to laugh your head off.

Young's excerpt from his book
Young’s excerpt from his book

To tell the truth this is hilariously funny. If he wasn’t serious then he played a colossal joke on us all.

I defy anyone to tell me what this means:

“Always deploy so that the right oblique may be readily established in case the objective plane remains open or becomes permanently located on the centre or on the king’s wing, or that the crochet aligned may readily be established if the objective plane becomes permanently located otherwise than at the extremity of the strategic front.”

It means play 1. e4

More About Franklin K. Young

There is a good article on the meaning of his system by Batgirl wh0 is a famous chess author. You can read it here.

He was said to be one of the hardest authors to translate into English. This is funny because all his books were written in English.

Another reason why his books were so terrible was because of their long windiness. In his book Chess Generalship he spends 40 pages just discusses the premise of the book that being to combine chess and war. He constantly quotes famous people in and out of context and in the first 101 pages we see not one chess diagram. His book was 240 pages and to tell the truth enough was enough.

Whether he was sage, charlatan, or fool his books are basically unreadable. However if you would like to try to tackle the challenge of reading these so called books you can find online copies on this page.  

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Franklin Knowles Young Chess Games

[pgn height=500 initialHalfmove=0 autoplayMode=none [Event "London-Dublin"] [Site "Telegraph"] [Date "1865.??.??"] [EventDate "?"] [Round "?"] [Result "1-0"] [White "Franklin Knowles Young"] [Black "City of Sidney"] [ECO "C55"] [WhiteElo "?"] [BlackElo "?"] [PlyCount "29"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Bc4 Bc5 5. O-O Nf6 6. e5 d5 7. exf6 dxc4 8. fxg7 Rg8 9. Re1+ Be6 10. Bg5 Qd5 11. Nbd2 Qf5 12. Ne4 Rxg7 13. Nh4 Qxg5 14. Nxg5 Rxg5 15. f4 1-0 [/pgn] [pgn height=500 initialHalfmove=0 autoplayMode=none [Event "Greece"] [Site "GRC"] [Date "1874.??.??"] [EventDate "?"] [Round "?"] [Result "0-1"] [White "Carapelli"] [Black "Franklin Knowles Young"] [ECO "C40"] [WhiteElo "?"] [BlackElo "?"] [PlyCount "26"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 f5 3. Nxe5 Nf6 4. Bc4 fxe4 5. Nf7 Qe7 6. Nxh8 d5 7. Bb3 Bg4 8. f3 exf3+ 9. Kf2 Ne4+ 10. Ke3 Qg5+ 11. Kd3 Nf2+ 12. Kc3 d4+ 13. Kxd4 Qc5# 0-1] [/pgn] [pgn height=500 initialHalfmove=0 autoplayMode=none [Event "Casual Game"] [Site "Boston Press club, Boston, MA USA"] [Date "1892.11.08"] [EventDate "?"] [Round "?"] [Result "1-0"] [White "Franklin Knowles Young"] [Black "L Dore"] [ECO "C21"] [WhiteElo "?"] [BlackElo "?"] [PlyCount "43"] 1. e4 e5 2. d4 exd4 3. c3 dxc3 4. Bc4 Nf6 5. Nf3 Nxe4 6. O-O Nd6 7. Nxc3 Nxc4 8. Re1+ Be7 9. Nd5 Nc6 10. Bg5 f6 11. Rc1 b5 12. Rxc4 bxc4 13. Ne5 fxg5 14. Qh5+ g6 15. Nf6+ Bxf6 16. Nxg6+ Qe7 17. Rxe7+ Bxe7 18. Ne5+ Kd8 19. Nf7+ Ke8 20. Nd6+ Kd8 21. Qe8+ Rxe8 22. Nf7# 1-0 [/pgn] [pgn height=500 initialHalfmove=0 autoplayMode=none [Event "Boston"] [Site "Boston"] [Date "1893.01.26"] [EventDate "?"] [Round "?"] [Result "1-0"] [White "Franklin Knowles Young"] [Black "Harry Nelson Pillsbury"] [ECO "C62"] [WhiteElo "?"] [BlackElo "?"] [PlyCount "31"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 d6 4. d4 Bd7 5. O-O f6 6. c3 Nge7 7. Nh4 g6 8. f4 Bg7 9. f5 gxf5 10. exf5 O-O 11. Qg4 Kh8 12. Rf3 Rg8 13. Rh3 Bh6 14. Qh5 Bxc1 15. Ng6+ Kg7 16. Qxh7# 1-0 [/pgn]