Last updated on 2023-09-20
Did Morphy play against the French Emperor Napoleon III during his stay in Paris ?
Charles Maurian, in the edition of November 14th, 1858, of The Sunday Delta, publishes the following information (picture taken from New Orleans Sunday Delta (Excavations – Chess Archaeology: Jack O’Keefe Project):
It appears that the fame of the American chess player has reached even the ears of the Emperor of the French, and his majesty has expressed the desire of seeing the young hero and witnessing his performances. The feat of eight blindfold games is to be repeated in his presence, and the Emperor has even consented to take part in the play and equalize his chances of success by the acceptance of a rook. Should Mr. Morphy choose to deal with the Emperor as he has done with the rest of mankind, his majesty will have but a sorry chance of victory. We will look with interest to this novel duel between an American citizen and an Emperor.
A similar information had already been published in the Utica Daily Observer, November 4th and in the Porter’s Spirit of the Times, November 6th (as mentioned by Lawson).
In the December 12th issue of the New Orleans Sunday Delta, Maurian reports information from Frederick Edge, among which: He was lately to have been introduced to the Emperor by the American Minister.
However, Frederick Edge never mentions this event in his books and there seems to be no trace of it in French newspapers.
Did this event finally happen or not ?