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"Draughts is the one game played by a maximum of people with a minimum of intelligence. I am one of those who has always played, but never understood."

William E. Gladstone 1809-1898

"Draughts is not merely an idle amusement. Several very valuable qualities of the mind, useful in the course of human life, are to be acquired or strengthened by it, so as to become habits ready on all occasions".

Benjamin Franklin

"Everybody plays draughts, but comparatively few are draughts players."

Frank Dunne, "Draughts - A Practical Guide to Play Scientific" " (2nd Ed.) 1911

"Draughts is a less attractive game, infinitely less, but it is more scientific. You see, a step at draughts is irreparable. At chess, however, you can get back, change the disposition of your men, and possibly win."

J.H. Blackthorn (English Chess Champion 1895)

"Chess is what you see, Checkers is what you know. There is enough in either game to last a man a lifetime".

Harry N. Pillsbury (Chess grandmaster, Checkers expert)

"The "best" move is not necessarily the "strongest" but that which will beguile the opponent into making a mistake".

Derek Oldbury (1950)

"I do not live to play, but I play in order that I may live, and return with greater zest to the labours of life".


"To calculate is not in itself to analyse. A chess player, for example, does one without effort of the other. I will therefore take occasion to assert that the higher powers of the reflective intellect are more decidedly and more usefully tasked by the unostentatious game of draughts than by all the elaborate frivolity of chess. In the latter, where the pieces have different and bizarre motions, with various and variable values, what is only complex is mistaken for what is profound. The attention is here called powerfully into play. If it flag for an instant, an oversight is committed resulting in injury or defeat. The possible moves being not only manifold, but involute, the chances of such oversights are multiplied; and in nine cases out of ten it is the more concentrative, rather than the more acute player who conquers.In draughts on the contrary, where the moves are unique and have little variation, the probabilities of inadvertence are diminished, and the mere attention being left comparatively, unemployed, what advantages are obtained by either party are obtained by superior acumen".

Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849)

("The Murders in the Rue Morgue")

It's a fascinating game, and it satisfies a facet of the human personality - it's creative, scientific, and artistic".

M. Tinsley (Former World Draughts Champion)

"For life is a kind of draughts, in which we have points to gain and competitors or adversaries to contend with; and in which there is a vast variety of good and evil events that are in some degree, the effects of prudence, or want of it. By playing at draughts then we learn (1) foresight, which looks a little into futurity, and considers the consequences that may attain an action: (2) circumspection, which surveys the whole scene of action, and (3) caution, the habit of not making our moves too hastily. Lastly, we learn by draughts not to be discouraged by present appearances in the state of our affairs, but to persevere in hoping for a favourable change, and in the search for resources. The game is full of events, there is such a variety of turns in it, fortune of it is so subject to sudden vicissitudes, and one so frequently discovers, after long contemplation, the means of extracting oneself from a supposed insurmountable difficulty, that one is encouraged to continue the contest to the last, in hope of victory by our own skill, or at least of making a draw through the negligence of the adversary".

Benjamin Franklin "Draughts Board Magazine" 1870.

"T.B.F agreed, and it was, of course, the draughts player in him that came out during this period in his life. As a lad, spending hours at the draughts board, he never minded losing a few men if he could get a king. In 1966 he had gained that king … " (p85)

"One Move Ahead" Ambassador Productions LTD 1995

[Biography of T.B.F. Thompson.]

"Success in checkers requires hard work, certain natural talents, a good memory, and the ability to visualise".

M. Tinsley (Former World Draughts Champion)

"The price to pay keeps the vast majority from becoming proficient".

M. Tinsley (Former World Draughts Champion)

"To appreciate checkers you have to know so much".

M. Tinsley (Former World Draughts Champion)

© NorthWest Draughts Federation 2002