Chess in 1758
by Bill Wall

Books by Bill Wall
In 1758, Philidor was urged to undertake a regular comic opera.

In 1758, Philidor composed the opera comique Les Pelerins de la Mecque (The Pilgrims of Mecca). It premiered at the Theatre de la Foire St. Laurent. The director of the theatre was Corbi, who encouraged Philidor to compose more music for opera comiques.

In 1758, chess was mentioned as being played in Iceland and the Faroe Islands. [source: Horrebow, Natural History Iceland, 1758, p. 139]

In 1758, the earliest chess pieces made of porcelain were produced at Furstenburg, Germany. [source: Country Life, 1949, p. 611]

On April 28, 1758, U.S. President James Monroe was born. He was a chess player and purchased chess books from Thomas Jefferson (including Philidor's manual of chess) when Jefferson departed for France according to James Monroe, The Quest for National Unity, by Harry Ammon. He played chess against Jefferson and Aaron Burr. Monroe was an avid player in chess, checkers, poker, whist, and dominoes. (source: The Last Founding Father: James Monroe, by Harlow Unger.) The James Monroe Museum in Fredericksburg, Virginia has a chess set that belonged to Monroe that was a gift from Thomas Jefferson.

On May 6, 1758, Maximilian Robespierre was born in France. He was one of the best-known and most influential figures of the French Revolution. He was an enthusiastic chess player and often played at the Cafe de la Regence.

On October 14, 1758, James Francis Edward Keith, a Scottish soldier and a Field Marshal in the Prussian Army, was killed in battle. He was considered one of the best chess players of his day. He played chess with Frederick the Great (1712-1786). [sources: Walker, A New Treatise on Chess, 1841, p. 266 and Memoir of Marshall Keith, 1869, p. 60]

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