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H. J. R. MurraySon of James Murray, the first editor of the Oxford English Dictionary. (1868–1955) is a very important figure in the history of board games studies. He published two key works: A History of Chess in 1913 and A History of Board-Games Other Than Chess in 1951.

A History of Chess took 13 years to complete, and Murray taught himself German and Arabic in order to finish the book! A History of Board-Games Other Than Chess was published when he was 83, being nearly 40 years in the making.

Errata for …Other Than Chess

The following are my own notes on what I believe to be incorrect in the book. They are listed in book order, with section number first; the list is incomplete:

§3.1.6 (p. 39): Tre-guti is not equivalent to three-men’s-morris but is a capturing game; also the citation Games from the Punjab should be named A Few Types of Sedentary Games prevalent in the Punjab.

§3.3.2 (p. 41): alquerque de tres is listed as equivalent to three-men’s-morris; it is actually equivalent to noughts & crosses (§3.2).

§3.3.5 (p. 41): the citation of Notice des émaux, bijoux et objets divers, exposés dans les galeries du Musée du Louvre (p. 381) for carré chinois is incorrect (but he is following Chess in Iceland and in Icelandic literature, with historical notes on other table-games (p. 114)).

§3.3.11 (p. 41): Tin-guti pait pait is not in the reference cited (Humphries (1906)), but it is in Datta (1933).

§3.3.13 (p. 42): HydeG[p. 211] writes Che-lo, not lo che.

§3.5 (p. 45): a3, b1, c3, and b3, b6 being empty should read (something like) b1, c2, b3, and a2, b2 being empty, as the pieces should form a cross shape with an empty middle; vangjamylna should read vængjamylna; also, charri or saddeh refer to simple mills, not the ‘running mill’ formation.

§3.5.13 (p. 47): al-Fīrūzābādī shows board G, not B.

§4.9.3 (p. 94): Murray mistakenly suggests that tjeki (i.e. Ceki cards) is the same as the game chuki.

“Books and articles consulted”

pg. 244: All of Hem Chandra Das-Gupta’s articles have incorrect titles. Possibly they were published under different names at some point?


  1. (, originally published 1913). ⁨A History of Chess⁩. Skyhorse Publishing⁩: New York, NY, USA. ISBN: 978-1-62087-062-4.

  2. (). ⁨A History of Board-Games Other Than Chess⁩. Oxford University Press⁩: Oxford, England, UK. ISBN: 0-19-827401-7.  1978 reprint available here

  3. (). ⁨⁩ volume 2. Vinchon⁩: Paris.

  4. (). ⁨⁩. The Florentine Typographical Society⁩: Florence.

  5. (). ‘⁨⁩’. Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal vol. 2: pages 117–127.

  6. (). ‘⁨⁩’. Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal vol. 29: pages 167–170.

  7. (). ⁨⁩ [Two Books On Oriental Games] volume 2: ‘⁨Historia Nerdiludii⁩ [History of the Nerd-game]’. E Theatro Sheldoniano⁩: Oxford, UK.


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