Sheffield & Rotherham Independent, 1885 (July competition)

#2 (3 pr.)
No mottos or envelopes were required. Problems had to be marked July Competition.
Prizes were awarded to the problems that receed the most marks in the Spotting Competition.
1885-07-31 (sent to us during the month of July)
1 pr. T. Taverner (No. 35)
2 pr. H. W. Sherrard (No. 29)
3 pr. H. W. Sherrard (No. 21)
hon. pr. C. Planck (No. 10)
hm. H. Hosey Davis (No. 24)
hm. Avon = J. Firth (No. 26)
hm. T. Taverner (No. 3)
hm. G. J. Slater (No. 14)
hm. H. Jacobs (No. 1)
hm. J. G. Chancellor (No. 12)
Sheffield & Rotherham Independent (see notes)
v. 79 = 69, i. 9572 (1885-06-13), p. 4 (suppl.): announcement (2 pr.)
v. 79 = 69, i. 9614 (1885-08-01), p. 5 (suppl.): tourney closed; first problems printed
v. 79 = 69, i. 9715 (1885-11-28), p. 5 (suppl.): last problems printed
v. 79 = 69, i. 9739 (1885-12-26), p. 5 (suppl.): awards, competitors
v. [70], i. 9745 (1886-01-02), p. 5 (suppl.): J. Rayner: A Solver's Report

The time allowed for competing problems to be sent in was one month. A solution tourney was announced on 1885-07-04 to last between August 1st and November 28th. Problems were published in the order they arrived.

The report does not state the number of received problems. 36 problems were published, and at least four additional problems may have been found to be faulty and dropped before publication took place. The last published problem (no. 36) was dropped from the competition as it eventually proved to be faulty. At least one problem (tourney prb. 32, see below) proved to be an illegal position, but no mention of exclusion from the competition has been found.

After all problems had been published, a Spotting Competition took place where solvers tried to predict which problems would be awarded prizes. (Prizes were given to those who came closest.) Then three, two and one marks were given to each nominated problem, and prizes were awarded to the problems that collected the most marks. Twenty-five solvers participated, but two voters did not give full marks, while a third nominated two problems for first prize.

An honorary prize was awarded to C. Planck for his extremely pleasing problem; while this award follows the spotting marks order, the reason for making it a honorary prize instead of an honourable mention is not explained further. (As the award is a Prize, the problem has been included below.) Neither is the list of hm's explained: it appears, however, that all problems that received at least one nomination for a prize are present in the list of awards.

The report also suggests that the author of tourney prb. 26 had entered under the pseudonym Avon which was resolved in the report.

In his informal Solver's Report J. Rayner notes that three of the tourney problems (nos. 31, 32, and 33) were puzzles rather than problems: they were mainly concerned with the legality of the diagram position, or the legality of castling in the solution. Some of the solvers suspected these problem to be intended to break up the field of solvers for the solution tourney. The authors of tourney prbs. 31 and 32 remained pseudonymous as Hippomenes and Atalanta, while tourney prb. 33 was composed by F. C. Collins.

The unexpected jump in volume numbers from v. 68 (for tourneys from 1884) to v. 79 (for this tourney) follows the volume numbers as they are printed on the title pages of the identified issues. The quotes used above are intended to indicate that the volume numbers, though consistent through the year, are in a larger context incorrect.

In the following year there is a change. The first issue for 1886 had the volume number 79 (continuing from the previous volume), and the second issue volume number 80 (updated to the following volume number). All examined issues that follow have the volume number 70, which is thus taken to be the correct volume number for this year, and the last source reference above has been corrected to volume number [70], indicating that the actually printed volume number (which was LXXX = 80) is incorrect.


1st Prize: T. Taverner


2nd Prize: H. W. Sherrard


3rd Prize: H. W. Sherrard


Honorary Prize: C. Planck