In history, the game of chess was always played by great leaders, scientists artist and geniuses.
Probably, leaders like Stalin; Lenin, Napoleon and Wellington, liked the game for the strategy and the war practices involved to defeat the opponent; maybe famous scientist like Benjamin Franklin, Galileo, Mendelejev, Blathy, Einstein, Oppenheimer appreciated the mind-game strategy and probabilities calculations; perhaps great writers such as Cervantes, Rabelais, Jean-Jacques Rosseau,Voltaire, Goethe, Sir Walter Scott, Edgar Allan Poe, Marx, Dickens, Tolstoi, Pierre Loti, Gide, Gorkij, Nabokov, Borges, loved the inner and unexpected plots development in the game, like a different version of an infinite ongoing saga; perchance painters like Matisse, Magritte, Duchamp, Ernst, loved the perfect forms and the symbolism of the pieces, combined with the chess board to form a perfect and always different artwork. We don’t know exactly why chess is so popular among intellectuals, but the fact is that since old times this incredible game has always had a fascinating power.
History is full of game anecdotes and famous challenges, like the famous dare between Albert Einstein vs Robert Julius Oppenheimer in Princeton in 1933. Einstein loved chess and after the publication of a pamphlet called “One Hundred Authors Against Einstein”, in which relativity theory was harshly criticized from those who believed that the speed of light was limited, the great physician answered in this way: “Chess grips its exponent, shackling the mind and brain so that the inner freedom and independence of even the strongest character cannot remain unaffected.”
Some more famous quotes:
Not all artist are chess players, but all chess players Are artists. (Marcel Duchamp)
Chess is a curse upon a man. (H.G. Wells)
Playing chess is like taking your mind to the gym. (Pascal)
Pawns are born free, yet are everywhere in chains. (R. Kennedy)
Chess are a mind’s torture. (Gary Kasparov)
The game of chess is an International language. (Edward Lasker)
Game of Chess is not merely an idle amusement. … For Life is a kind of Chess, in which we have often points to gain. (Benjamin Franklin)
Chess is not a game but a disease. (Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman).