Jews have long played a role as players and chess theoreticians, they also played a role in the development of the game.
The two main contemporary schools of chess were conceived of by Jews, the Modern school by Wilhelm Steinitz which advocates the accumulation of small advantages, and the Hypermodern by Richard Réti Aron Nimzowitsch which avoids releasing tension in the centre of the board. Julio Ganzo’s book Chessology shows four stages of the consolidation of modern chess: the psychological by Lasker, the scientific by Tarrasch, the positional by Capablanca and the energetic by Breyer. Three of the four were Jews. The Chess Review of U.S. was founded by Israel Horowitz and the strategy of countergambits by Ernst Falkbeer
In his 1978 book, The Rating of Chess Players, Past and Present, Professor Arpad Elo numerically rated some 476 major tournament players from the nineteenth century onward. Of the fifty-one highest ranked players, approximately one-half were Jewish, or of Jewish descent.
"Since chess entered upon its third period of splendour, the period in which we actually are, the Israelitish element has exercised a predominance out of all proportion to the number and position of the Jews.The branches of activity are well known in which the Israelites have excelled for so long, and, as it were, by the force of atavism – banking, business, industry. In chess their supremacy began to manifest itself scarcely two generations ago. It has not ceased to grow stronger and stronger since then"
- Alphonse Goetz in The Parallel Progress of Chess and Civilization, L’Eco degli Scacchi (1918)
These games are dedicated to the jewish geniuses that made chess what chess is today.