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Your visit to Blanca, a village in the famous Ricote Valley By Govert Westerveld
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Blanca is the ideal place for the slow movement, to enjoy the charm of its landscapes and to relax and live better. One cannot hurry the act of creation. Maybe this is a reason that we find in this... More > village so many painters. They all need pace, slowness, silence to be creative and productive. I came from Holland, 40 years ago, and hated in that country the long queues of cars, the great haste of the people. During my travels to many foreign countries as a result of international business I came to the conclusion that there for me are only two places to live well: Haiwai and Blanca. This book has been written for you in ten lenguages: English, German, Dutch, Italian, French, Swedish, Russian, Arabic, Japonese and Chinese.< Less
The Spanish Origin of the Checkers and Modern Chess Game. Volume III. By Govert Westerveld
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Since 1987 we have defended in articles that the Spanish queen Isabella I of Castile (Isabel la Católica) was the new chess queen (dama) on the chessboard. Other publications were in 1990,... More > 1994, 1997, and 2004. And of course, Marilyn Yalom studied our book during her visit to the National Library in The Hague (Holland) before she wrote Birth of the Chess Queen in 2004. In her book one cannot see that in 1987, 1990, and 1994 we already published material about Isabel la Catolica (Isabel I of Castile) being the new powerful dama or chess queen on the chessboard. In other words we can state here that we have been studying Spanish history and its chess literature for over 30 years. Since 2003 we have also known the development of the new bishop in chess.< Less
Baba Sy, the World Champion of 1963-1964 of 10x10 Draughts - Volume II By Govert Westerveld
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This book should be considered a historical book, as it is the draughts’ career of Baba Sy, a prominent Senegalese player. He was able to be the best in the world without reading any books. He... More > had a natural talent and was a self-made man thanks to the game of checkers. I have witnessed the achievements of the great Baba Sy and I have been in the early stage of the great players like Harm Wiersma and Ton Sijbrands, on which I predicted in 1964 that they would be a future world champions. So I know the mentality that one must have to succeed in this mind sport. My 40 year stay in Spain and my research on the Moors permits me to know more about the Islamic custom. And so I am now in a much better position than 40 years ago to comment properly on the life of Baba Sy.< Less
Woldouby's Biography, Extraordinary Senegalese checkers player during his stay in France 1910 – 1911. By Govert Westerveld
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Every checkers player knows about Woldouby's famous position. This 21 year-old Senegalese drew a lot of attention in Paris in 1910 when he won against all challengers in his store located in the... More > Senegalese village of the Exposition of Jardin d'Acclimatation zoologique. No one understood how this player could win all the games that fast. After Amadou Kandie Woldouby was the second African who participated in a checkers tournament in Paris since he became the city champion in 1911. In 1911 he left France and no one knew his whereabouts since then. In this biography we show that Weiss' golpe (shot) actually was Woldouby's golpe, since he won against Isidore Weiss with it. On the other hand we want to show that Woldouby returned to Senegal in 1911 to take the place of a checkers runner-up in 1913. His biography deserves a worthy place in the history of checkers, as he was the prominent predecessor of the famous Senegalese checkers player Baba Sy.< Less
The History of Checkers (Draughts) By Govert Westerveld
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The modern game of chess started around 1475 in Spain when the queen and bishop got a much more powerful move. It was called "Mad Queen Chess". These new rules quickly spread throughout... More > western Europe and in Spain. The enhanced move for the chess queen started after the coronation of the powerfull queen of Spain Isabella I. The historical records duly note that Queen Isabella I was crowned with the sword of justice raised in front of her, and the sceptre and throne were given to her. This allusion to the real-world event is so clear within the Scachs d’Amor poem to Isabella’s actual coronation that the inspiration of Queen Isabella for the new chess queen and powerfull dama of the draughts game is unquestionable. The Spaniards like the Moors, played a game on the board of lines and called it alquerque. The game became modern draughts through being transferred to the chessboard around that time. This book is the result of at least 30 years investigations in the Spanish archives< Less
The Origin of the Checkers and Modern Chess Game. Volume III By Govert Westerveld
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This book, Volume III, at this moment is one of the most profound, rigorous and well-documented investigations ever into the history of draughts or chess. In this monumental work, around one thousand... More > books dealing with history, bibliography, technical treatises, literature, general culture, etc. were carefully studied and referenced. The intersection between the games of chess and draughts was much greater than was first thought, as the present research demonstrates. And as could not be otherwise: with the work and cooperation of one of the all-time great figures of the history of draughts and a chess historian specialized in the medieval-renaissance period and technical bibliography, everything would out. Indeed, a solid foundation on which to accommodate a truth that had so fiercely resisted the light of day. If this were not the case, without this team work, a lot, and maybe too much, time would have gone by until everything would have finally settled into its rightful place.< Less
Muslim history of the Region of Murcia (715-1080). Volume I By Govert Westerveld
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This work is the result of studies led by me during my long stay in Blanca (Murcia, Spain). The darkness and oblivion opposed my purpose, of a nation that almost for eight centuries dominated in... More > Spain and where the political history of the Spanish Arabs (Muslims) in Murcia remained in the deepest darkness until recently. I do not deny the glory of Dozy and the immense service he has done with its publications to Spain, but we cannot ignore that today we have Arabists in Muria and Spain who follow the footsteps of the wise Dutch and have improved on him a lot. Murcia belonged to Al-Andalus and throughout the period of Islamic rule, Al-Andalus was a remarkable example and outstanding model of tolerance. All Jews and Christians were allowed to maintain their beliefs and live their lives as they desired as long as they respected their Muslim rulers. The Muslims played a principal role in the history of Spain. Their presence illuminated the Iberian Peninsula while the rest of Europe was engulfed in darkness.< Less
Ibn Sab’in of the Ricote Valley; the First and Last Islamic Place in Spain By Govert Westerveld
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This book is the outcome of a close study of the Ricote Valley and its famous Sufi Ibn Sab’in. Its purpose is to disclose more of the historical and comparative data. Arab Spaniards have... More > created a glorious human story that lasted for centuries within the scope of the Mediterranean culture. However, a lot of the history of the Ricote Valley is only written in Spanish and still not in English. Andalusian scientists moved from the region of Murcia to the heart of the Islamic world. Their move had quite a deep effect. Among these scientists was the great Sufi philosopher, Muhammad Ibn-‘Abdul-Haq known as Ibn- Sab‘in (d. 669 H. = 1270 AD), who came from the Ricote Valley. He is the originator of the deep philosophical approach in dealing with highly humanistic Sufi thought, and the author of the magnificent treatise Al-Kalam ‘ala Al-Masa’il Al-Siqqilliyya, in which he answered the philosophical questions that Frederick II, the Emperor of Sicily, sent to Muslim scientists in the Mashreq and the Maghreb.< Less
The History of Alquerque-12. Remaining countries. Volume II. By Govert Westerveld
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The first Spanish books about the game of draughts have a very high standard and date from the XVI century, while the first French book comes from the XVII century and the game description is very... More > basic. Contrarily to this evidence scholars did not consider it necessary to grant Spain the honour of being the country of creation of the game of draughts and of the new modality in chess with the new dama. Both the Alquerque-3 and the Alquerque-9 games were known in Roman times. The situation is completely different for the Alquerque-12 game. It is said that the Alquerque has its origin in Egypt. Perhaps this is the case for the Alquerque-3 and Alquerque-9 games, but never for Alquerque-12. Some authors claim that the Alquerque-12 game is a Greek or Roman game, but the great expert of these games, Dr. Ulrich Schädler, discards those theories. The first volume of the Alquerque-12 game unravels France and Spain. The second volume deals with the remaining countries of the world.< Less
The Birth of a new Bishop in Chess By Govert Westerveld
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The new bishop in chess has been a great mystery from the XV century until now, because not only was the power of the Queen greatly introduced, but so was also the position of the church. Pedro... More > Gonzalez de Mendoza was the partisan of Princess (later Queen) Isabella I of Castile and fought for her in the Battle of Zamora and Toro between 1475 and 1476. This warrior churchman had a prominent part in placing Princess Isabella on the throne and served her tirelessly in her efforts to suppress the disorderly nobles of Castile with the money of the church. Cardinal Pedro Gonzalez de Mendoza remains one of the most striking and picturesque figures of the XV-century, and was equally great as churchman, statesman and warrior. He was considered as “the third king of Spain” and Isabella’s best adviser.< Less

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