Cecil Valentine De Vere

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Cecil Valentine De Vere
Full name Cecil Valentine De Vere
Country  Scotland
Born (1845-02-14)14 February 1845
Died 9 February 1875(1875-02-09) (aged 29)

Cecil Valentine De Vere (14 February 1845, Montrose – 9 February 1875, Torquay) was the pseudonym of Cecil Valentine Brown,[1] the winner of the first official British Chess Championship, in 1866.

He played chess effortlessly and elegantly without recourse to chess study or theory; in this respect he was not unlike José Raúl Capablanca. His meteoric rise to fame and equally dramatic decline has been compared to Paul Morphy and he is often cited as 'The English Morphy'. His great natural talent for the game was attended by an equal indolence for work. Cecil De Vere contracted tuberculosis around 1867 and later became dependent on alcohol. He lived in London for most of his life but was sent to Torquay by his chess friends in 1874 in the vain hope of recuperation. He died in Torquay, UK, aged 29, and is buried there.


  1. ^ Gaige, Jeremy (1987), Chess Personalia, A Biobibliography, McFarland, p. 91, ISBN 0-7864-2353-6 

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