The first officially recognized world Chess championship was held in 1886, when Wilhelm Steinitz beat Johannes Zukertort in a match held in the USA. The outstanding players before this date are well known, but there were no official champions. Each champion has their own particular brand of play - be it aggressive, attacking, tactical or strategic - which is just as personal as their signature. --Chesmayne
Champion * 1837 - 1884
was without question the best player of his time and
considered the world champion since there was no official world
championship at the time. A match with British Master
Howard Staunton would have resolved the issue.
* 1st World Champion *
1886 - 1894
Paul Morphy’s successor after his death, a match was held between Wilhelm Steinitz and Johannes Zukertort in New York, St. Louis and New Orleans. Steinitz won by a score of 12-7, becoming the
first world Chess champion.
World Champion * 1894
Lasker’s more refined and superior style proved decisively for
Steinitz and in 1894, Lasker defeats
Wilhelm Steinitz by a score of 12-7
in a match held in New York, Philadelphia and Montreal.
He was world Chess champion for 26 years.
World Champion * 1921 -
Only an even stronger engame player like Jose Raul Capablanca could
replace Dr. Lasker. The “Chess Machine” as he was
called, won the title against Emanuel Lasker in 1921 without a single game
lost. This match was held in Havana, Cuba.
World Champion * 1927 -
a long match in Buenos Aires in 1927, Alekhine defeats
Capablanca on his initial defense by 18½ to
relations with him were so bad, that he never gave Capablanca a
chance to regain the title and instead played Bogoljubov in September 1929.
World Champion * 1935
1935, in Holland, Dutchman Max Euwe won the title to Alekhine by a
score of 15½ to 14½ and was the world champion from
1935-37. Max Euwe lost the title back to Alekhine in a rematch in 1937. Euwe was the President of FIDE, the
official body (1970-78).
When Alexander Alekhine died (he had regained the title from Euwe
earlier), FIDE took control of the title and held a match in
The Hague and Moscow to
determine a new champion. Mikhail Botvinnik won the five-player
event with 14 out of 20 points.
Vasily Vasilyevich Smyslov
World Champion * 1957
great endgame skill was the main reason he defeated Botvinnik for
the title in 1957 by the score 12.5–9.5
and yet he played three matches against Mikhail Botvinnik for the
title over the years 1954- 58. He lost the title back to Botvinnik
Mikhail Nekhemievich Tal
World Champion * 1960
Mikhail Tal from Riga, Latvia returned from Moscow with the tile after defeating
Mikhail Botvinnik by 12.5 to 8.5 (6 wins, 2 losses, and 13 draws) in 1960. He was
world champion for one
year after losing the championship title back to Botvinnik in
World Champion * 1963
Tigran Petrosian defeated Mikhail Botvinnik in 1963 with a
12 - 9 score. He retained his championship in a match
against Spassky in
1966 by a 12 - 11 score. Petrosian won the Soviet championship
four times and loved constricted and
cramped positions .