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Samuel Tinsley
Number of games in database: 84
Years covered: 1878 to 1899

Overall record: +30 -41 =12 (43.4%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 1 exhibition game, blitz/rapid, odds game, etc. is excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Queen's Pawn Game (15) 
    D00 D05 D04
 Queen's Gambit Declined (10) 
    D35 D30 D37 D31
 Dutch Defense (6) 
    A84 A85 A90 A81
With the Black pieces:
 French Defense (21) 
    C10 C00 C02 C11 C01
 French (14) 
    C10 C00 C11 C13
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Tarrasch vs Tinsley, 1890 1/2-1/2
   Janowski vs Tinsley, 1895 0-1
   Gunsberg vs Tinsley, 1895 0-1
   Tinsley vs L Van Vliet, 1890 1-0
   Tinsley vs J Mason, 1895 1-0
   Tinsley vs Bird, 1893 1-0
   Tinsley vs Bird, 1895 1/2-1/2

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Manchester (1890)
   London ''Black and White'' (1893)
   London (1899)
   Hastings (1895)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Manchester 1890 by
   Manchester 1890 by Tabanus

   Teichmann vs Pillsbury, 1895
   Schlechter vs B Vergani, 1895
   Burn vs Von Bardeleben, 1895
   Janowski vs J Mason, 1895

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(born Jan-13-1847, died Feb-26-1903, 56 years old) United Kingdom

[what is this?]

Mr. Samuel Tinsley was a well-known player and chess editor of The Times and the Kentish Mercury. He was born at South Mimms, near Shenley, Hertfordshire. Despite the lack of formal education, he and his brothers founded Tinsley Brothers, a publishing firm. Soon, Samuel formed his own company, Samuel Tinsley & Co. in 1872. The business was later sold to F. V. White & Co.

His contemporary, G. E. H. Bellingham, evaluated his play as follows: "Mr. Tinsley furnishes one of the few examples of a really strong player who obtained his strength during middle age. He was admittedly never quite in the first flight, but his games were always highly original and entertaining. He was essentially of the attacking school, and perhaps it was a disregard of caution that prevented his taking higher positions in tournament play."

Tinsley was seventh at Manchester 1890. At Simpson's Divan 1893, he tied for second place with Mason and Teichmann, Blackburne (1st). He also competed at Hastings 1895 and London 1899, albeit with poor results.

On 26 Feb 1903, Tinsley attended a lecture at Lewisham Road Baptist Church and participated in the discussion that followed. When he returned to his seat, he immediately lost consciousness and never regained it. He was buried, after a service at the same church, in Lewisham Cemetery. The pallbearers were his four sons Edward, Samuel, Henry, and Frank Tinsley. Mis-attribution of scores, annotations and problems among the Tinsleys is common in today's databases.

(Source: B.C.M. April 1903)

Wikipedia article: Samuel Tinsley

Last updated: 2019-10-05 10:37:40

 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 84  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Mephisto vs Tinsley 1-0281878Leicester Square ExhibitionC57 Two Knights
2. Tinsley vs W Pollock  0-1321883Casual gameA01 Nimzovich-Larsen Attack
3. Tinsley vs W Pollock  1-0451885Casual gameA01 Nimzovich-Larsen Attack
4. Tinsley vs J Mortimer 1-0631890London Simpson's handicapD20 Queen's Gambit Accepted
5. Blackburne vs Tinsley 1-0351890ManchesterC14 French, Classical
6. Tinsley vs L Van Vliet  1-0591890ManchesterA80 Dutch
7. Tinsley vs O C Mueller  1-0431890ManchesterD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
8. Gunsberg vs Tinsley  0-1391890ManchesterC14 French, Classical
9. J Mason vs Tinsley ½-½271890ManchesterA00 Uncommon Opening
10. Tinsley vs Alapin  0-1251890ManchesterD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
11. Tinsley vs E Schallopp 1-0321890ManchesterA80 Dutch
12. Mackenzie vs Tinsley  0-1371890ManchesterC02 French, Advance
13. Tinsley vs W H Gunston  1-0421890ManchesterD35 Queen's Gambit Declined
14. E Thorold vs Tinsley 0-1381890ManchesterC00 French Defense
15. Tinsley vs Taubenhaus  0-1281890ManchesterD20 Queen's Gambit Accepted
16. Tarrasch vs Tinsley  ½-½281890ManchesterD35 Queen's Gambit Declined
17. L Van Vliet vs Tinsley 1-0481891Simpson's DivanC13 French
18. Bird vs Tinsley 1-0421891LondonA02 Bird's Opening
19. O C Mueller vs Tinsley  0-1241891Tinsley - Mueller mC11 French
20. Tinsley vs O C Mueller  1-0331891Tinsley - Mueller mA13 English
21. O C Mueller vs Tinsley  0-1271891Tinsley - Mueller mD35 Queen's Gambit Declined
22. Tinsley vs O C Mueller  1-0251891Tinsley - Mueller mD37 Queen's Gambit Declined
23. O C Mueller vs Tinsley  ½-½191891Tinsley - Mueller mB73 Sicilian, Dragon, Classical
24. Tinsley vs O C Mueller  ½-½511891Tinsley - Mueller mD04 Queen's Pawn Game
25. O C Mueller vs Tinsley  0-1251891Tinsley - Mueller mC01 French, Exchange
 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 84  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Tinsley wins | Tinsley loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: The 2 games from 1893 in the database are probably from the tournament held at the Simpson's Divan. This was Tinsley's best result, where he finished =2nd with Mason and Teichmann behind Blackburne.

Source: David Hooper and Kenneth Whyld "Oxford Companion to Chess", 2nd edition, OUP, 1992

May-16-09  amadeus: An article about Marion Tinsley:
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: In 1926 Samuel Tinsley teamed up with Vera Menchik to give a series of chess presentations on BBC radio.
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: So, is he related to the all-time greatest checkers player or not? And if yes, how?
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <GrahamClayton: In 1926 Samuel Tinsley teamed up with Vera Menchik to give a series of chess presentations on BBC radio.>

Presumably this would be Edward, since Samuel died in 1903.

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: chess lessons over the radio? Seems difficult, chess being a more visual medium.
Feb-03-10  TheFocus: <HeMateMe>< chess lessons over the radio? Seems difficult, chess being a more visual medium.>

capablanca's book <Last Lectures> was based on a series of chess lectures and lessons he gave on the radio.

Dec-28-10  Marcelo Bruno: Does someone know which was his death's cause?
Dec-29-10  Calli: <Marcelo Bruno> I have updated the bio with info from BCM. The precise cause of death is not stated. Generally, "passing out" or fainting is due to loss of blood pressure which is often due to heart disease or an aneurysm (internal bleeding), but there are other reasons and the exact cause of Tinsley's death may not be known.
Mar-26-11  Marcelo Bruno: <Calli> If I am not mistaken, La Stratégie from 1903 comments something about his obituary, but I don't remember what is written there. I took a sudden glance in an exemplar that belongs to São Paulo Chess Club.
Apr-09-11  myschkin: . . .

"The death of <Edward Samuel Tinsley> at the age of 67, at the end of the Worcester Congress, will have come as a great shock to a very large circle of friends and acquaintances. He had suffered a severe illness about a year previously, and had to go into hospital for a serious operation. He however made a good recovery, and his sudden death was quite unexpected. He was born on December 1st, 1869, and was the eldest son of Samuel Tinsley , the wellknown international player, who himself was in charge of the chess column of the Times for a great number of years. E.S. Tinsley on leaving school was apprenticed to the jewelry trade, and later became a traveller. After the death of his father in 1903 he and his two brothers took over the chess work for the Times, and their collaboration continued until 1912, when Edward took full charge. He continued his connection with the jewelry trade until after the outbreak of war in 1914, but a decline in business caused him to seek other employment, and he took charge of one of the clerical branches at Woolwich Arsenal. .."

(source: Obituary, BCM, 1937)

Jul-15-12  Karpova: According to page 101 of the '(Neue) Wiener Schachzeitung' 1903, Tinsley died of a <Herzschlage>, i. e. cardioplegia.
Aug-18-12  Karpova: Again according to to page 101 of the 'Wiener Schachzeitung' 1903, he had a collection 38,000 chess problems. His son took over not only the chess columns but also that great collection.
Aug-18-12  TheFocus: The younger Tinsley was not as good an analyst as his father. Nor as good a player.
May-08-13  Cibator: English IM William Winter (no relation to the Chess Omnibus author) also administered a severe pasting to Tinsley junior's capabilities as a chess correspondent, remarking that he'd made the Times column a laughing-stock throughout the chess world.

This was in Winter's memoirs, which were serialised in "Chess" magazine during 1963. His account of how Tinsley got the gig confirms that given by <Caissanist> above.

Jul-03-13  thomastonk: From "The Times", March 2, 1903:

"Mr. SAMUEL TINSLEY, of Lewisham, died suddenly on February 27 of heart failure at the age of 56. Mr Tinsley was speaking at a meeting in connection with the Lewisham-road Baptist Chapel on Thursday evening, in the work of which he was interested. He concluded his remarks, sat down, slipped from the chair to the floor, and died in the vestry almost immediately after removal without regaining conscionsness."

Jan-13-16  TheFocus: Happy birthday, Samuel Tinsley.
Jan-30-16  zanzibar: <THE charming chess-column of The Times (Weekly Edition) is well maintaining the high standard of excellence attained in the early days, and few particulars of the chess work of its energetic editor will be read with interest by all devotees of chess.

Mr. Tinsley is native of Hertfordshire, and was born January 13th, 1847. His early days were spent entirely in the fields and woods, so to speak, miming wild among dogs, guns, pheasants, and all sorts of game and wild birds, animals and fishes. To put it mildly, he had no scrap of education, and has been obliged to pick up all he knows since he was suddenly transferred from country fields and woods to the dirt and bustle of London, in 1858. The process has been difficult and expensive, but an even disposition, constant thirst for knowledge and experience of all sorts, and very temperate habits, have kept him ever with the desire to rise up and go forward.

He learnt the moves of chess from younger brother when the real troubles of life began, at the age of about 20. Mr. Tinsley has found it, as many others have done, rather too much of fascination, but still, on the other hand, it has proved solace and welcome and healthful distraction when relief to the mind appeared necessity even of existence.

We do not think his forte is serious play, according to the modern plodding style, and until quite recent years he never played match game. He preferred innumerable skittle games, and played them too freely. He has reason to regret this, and now thinks serious games are in many respects beneficial, especially in regard to the cultivation of good style. He says this, as will be observed, rather against his own predisposition, for the benefit of younger men.

Mr. Tinsley has, however, occasionally played in serious contests, and, rather to his surprise, he beat Müller handsomely in two matches. Mr. Müller had just then come over from Berlin. Mr. Tinsley came out well at the Manchester International, and though unsuccessful in sense through bad luck and literary occupations, he played far better in the Hastings Tournament than hitherto. He came out, by the way, second (tie) in an important tourney, Black and White, 1893 and won second in very good first-class Divan tournament. 1892.

It is no secret, we suppose, that for some three years he has managed all chess matters in connection with The Times, including the now popular column in the weekly edition of that journal. And we may point to the fact that while, well backed up by the wonderful staff of that marvellous journal, the chess has been generally absolutely correct. The Times has, during that period, publish than in all the previous years of its existence. This is great and notable fact.>

"The Chess Bouquet (1897)" p122

May-25-16  zanzibar: <

Tinsley belongs to another school, being brilliant, daring, dashing; not so sound as Fenton, but more dangerous, and not by any means rash. He appears at first sight to be getting on in years, but is in reality comparatively young. Coming to London at a very early age, fresh from the plough tail and the agricultural wilds of one of the home counties, with much less than the proverbial half-crown and no scrap of education or knowledge of the world, Tinsley has had to buy experience and knowledge dearly, and it has told on a highly-strung sensitive disposition, but his spirits are ever buoyant and juvenile. His first chess experiences were acquired in a good school. Who remembers the Divan thirteen or fourteen years ago? "All the talents" were there daily, and Saturday afternoons were especially attrac tive. W. Steinitz, J. H. Zukertort, J. H. Blackburne, W. N. Potter (a truly great and good English chess player and analyst), L. Hoffer, James Mason, H. E. Bird, Boden, and McDonnell— really those were palmy days ! What warm discussions there were on positions, endings, problems, games, and all sorts of chess matters ; and how frequently Zukertort, Steinitz, and Hoffer quarrelled and made it up in five minutes ! How heartily Boden enjoyed a game with Bird or McDonnell ! Tinsley was a pretty frequent listener and spectator, and having a retentive memory and an insatiable thirst for knowledge of all kinds, it is not to be wondered at if he picked up a few good chessy ideas under such favourable conditions. In off-hand play he holds with giving your opponent a chance, and cannot bear the idea of a hum-drum-dead-level solemn game, lasting for an hour or two without a whisper or a murmur, as if it were a matter of life or death ; unless indeed you profess to play a serious match game. He is fond of a trap, and it will not be wise to rush at once to the conclusion that any particularly obvious line of play will be to your advantage. He is usually careful and deep, and sees far ahead in a short time, and few can beat him at the pace. That at Purssell's he is popular is obvious ; witness his informal receptions after the Manchester Tournament and the recent match with Mtiller. He says many cutting things, but the Purssellites know him and make allowances, feeling that he has their interests at heart, and is strictly impartial.


BCM v11 (May 1891) p234/259

Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: This is very good. I see he drew a game with Tarrasch once...that is how I came here, or why.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Falkirk Herald, March 27th 1912, p.7:

<The Chess Ed. of the "Times" some time ago adopted the letter C instead of R for Rook, and had some thoughts of using S instead of Kt for knight, but now announces that, acting on the advice of correspondents, he will retain the old form for the knight.>

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Ernest J Clarke in his <San Francisco Chronicle> column of November 19, 1922, employs descriptive notation with <S> for <Kt>, but <R> is reassuringly resident. When did <N> for <Kt> become normative?
Jul-16-17  zanzibar: <<Missy> When did <N> for <Kt> become normative?>

Good question.

One thing for sure, it was late in coming no matter when it was.

(The S for knight notation, which has its rationale, was widely used in certain parts of the American press - most notably by Brownson in his Dubuque Chess Journal 1870-1892

Oct-04-19  Jean Defuse: ...

Samuel Tinsley (1847-1903), conscientious Victorian chesser, journalist and church-goer:



Oct-07-19  Jean Defuse: ...

Samuel Tinsley by Edward Winter


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