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MatPlus.Net Forum General Problemists distinguished in other fields?
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(41) Posted by Siegfried Hornecker [Tuesday, Nov 8, 2022 13:25]

Wichard von Alvensleben - not to be confused with his uncle of the same name who was a hero at the end of WWII, freeing the Tyrol SS hostages - is known as a helpmate composer.
Prior to taking up chess composition, he was multiple times Go champion. German and European champion 1961 to 1964, German champion also in 1974. 4th place at the Amateur (team) World Championship in Japan in 1963. Highest rank: 5d (5th Dan).
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(42) Posted by Joost de Heer [Tuesday, Nov 8, 2022 13:29]

I am a former Dutch draughts youth champion (, 1988).
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(43) Posted by Hauke Reddmann [Tuesday, Nov 8, 2022 21:46]

I just read GM Geller was a great basketballer, but I don't
know any chess problems by him.
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(44) Posted by Olaf Jenkner [Wednesday, Nov 9, 2022 00:35]

I just read Pelé was a great footballer, but I don't
know any chess problems by him.
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(45) Posted by Siegfried Hornecker [Thursday, Nov 17, 2022 21:18]

Walter Pulitzer (1878-1926) was the nephew of Jószef/Joseph Pulitzer (yes, that is the newspaper publisher the Pulitzer Prize is named after). He was an avid writer himself.
Walter Pulitzer of course is famous in chess composition for his book "Chess Harmonies", published at the age of 16, in 1894. It contains a selection of 100 of his problems that were sent to journals such as the "American Chess Magazine". Yes, at the age of 16.

(= 8+4 )

Walter Pulitzer, "Chess Harmonies" 1894, Mate in 2

Some chess master who shall remain unnamed was unable to solve the problem above within 15 minutes. Just kidding about the unnamed part. It was Wilhelm Steinitz.
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(46) Posted by Michael McDowell [Saturday, Nov 19, 2022 19:49]

Peter Mark Roget - famous for his Thesaurus.
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(47) Posted by Peter Wong [Monday, Nov 21, 2022 02:02]

Interesting to see more proposed names still.

About famous people who play chess, that is of course a much bigger topic. I think the best book-length coverage of it is The Complete Chess Addict and its expanded edition, The Even More Complete Chess Addict, which discuss everyone from Einstein to Napoleon. Because I read it 30 years ago, I'd forgotten that its authors were knowledgeable about chess compositions too and in fact they reference a good number of problemists, e.g. Lord Dunsany, Alfred de Musset, and Aleister Crowley – all mentioned in this thread. Two more problem composers cited in the books but not here are:

Oscar Blumenthal, another literary figure.

Jacob Bronowski, science populariser known for the documentary series, The Ascent of Man.
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(48) Posted by Kevin Begley [Monday, Nov 21, 2022 05:47]

Come to think of it...
How is "The Ascent of Man" not a chess problem theme? (def: any problem containing "PNBRQK" or "pnbrqk" in the fen string, preferably with little else)
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(49) Posted by Siegfried Hornecker [Monday, Nov 21, 2022 05:47]

Well, if literature scientist and theater critic makes you famous, Abram Gurvich also qualifies.
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(50) Posted by Hauke Reddmann [Monday, Nov 21, 2022 10:01]

@Kevin: Order, Order! BKNPQR, obviously :-)
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(51) Posted by shankar ram [Monday, Nov 21, 2022 10:26]

At Fujairah, I saw someone wearing a t-shirt with the familiar "ascent of man" stages with silhouettes of ape, chimp, neanderthal, homo sapiens, etc, followed by images of K, Q, R, B, S and P.
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(52) Posted by Kevin Begley [Monday, Nov 21, 2022 15:04]

OK, this merits a new thread.
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MatPlus.Net Forum General Problemists distinguished in other fields?