List of World Chess Champions
World Chess Champions are players who have won a match or tournament for the World Championship at chess. Both men and women can become champion, but no woman has ever been a challenger for the title. There is, however, a separate championship for women. There are also separate championships for specific age groups.
Before 1886, there was no official championship held, but some players were thought to be pre-eminent. From 1948 on, the World Chess Federation FIDE held the championships. Between 1993 and 2006 there were two world champion titles, the FIDE one and the classical one.
The most recent World Championship match took place in 2012, and Viswanathan Anand successfully defending his title.
Esteemed players before 1821 [change]
These players are included (pre-18th century) on little more than opinion, and (18th century) on the basis of more substantial information. Some authors of important early works on chess are noted.
|Francesch Vicent (author)||~1475||Spain (Catalonia)|
|Luis Ramirez de Lucena (author)||~1490||Spain|
|Pedro Damiano (author)||~1512||Portugal|
|Ruy López de Segura (author)||1559–1575||Spain|
|Leonardo da Cutri||1575||Kingdom of Naples|
|Paolo Boi||1575||Kingdom of Sicily|
|Giulio Polerio||~1580||Kingdom of Naples|
|Alessandro Salvio (author)||~1600||Kingdom of Naples|
|Gioachino Greco (author)||~1620–1634||Kingdom of Naples|
|Pietro Carrera||~1640||Kingdom of Sicily|
|Legall de Kermeur||~1730–1745||France|
|Philip Stamma (author)||1745||England|
|Ercoli del Rio (author)||~1750||Italy (Duchy of Modena)|
|Giambattista Lolli (author)||~1760||Italy (Duchy of Modena)|
|Domenico Ponziani (author)||~1770||Italy (Duchy of Modena)|
|Johann Baptist Allgaier (author)||~1795–~1815||Austrian Empire|
|Jacob Henry Sarratt (author)||~1805–~1815||England|
World Champions pre-FIDE [change]
These players are included on the basis of their winning matches against credible opponents. Champions are numbered from Steinitz onwards, because his match against Zukertort was publicly declared as a world championship, and generally accepted.
|Louis-Charles Mahé de La Bourdonnais||1821–1840||France|
|Pierre Charles Fournier de Saint-Amant||1840–1843||France|
|Paul Morphy||1858–1862||United States|
|1. Wilhelm Steinitz||1886–1894|| Austria-Hungary
|2. Emanuel Lasker||1894–1921||Germany|
|3. José Raúl Capablanca||1921–1927||Cuba|
|4. Alexander Alekhine||1927–1935
|5. Max Euwe||1935–1937||Netherlands|
FIDE world champions 1948–1993 [change]
Long matches, initially best of 24 games.
|Soviet Union (Russia)|
|7||Vasily Smyslov||1957–1958||Soviet Union (Russia)|
|8||Mikhail Tal||1960–1961||Soviet Union (Latvia)|
|9||Tigran Petrosian||1963–1969||Soviet Union (Armenia)|
|10||Boris Spassky||1969–1972||Soviet Union (Russia)|
|11||Robert J. Fischer||1972–1975||United States|
|12||Anatoly Karpov||1975–1985||Soviet Union (Russia)|
|13||Garry Kasparov||1985–1993|| Soviet Union
FIDE world champions 1993–2006 [change]
These knock-out events are separately numbered.
Classical world champions 1993–2006 [change]
These are matches of the traditional kind, and of 15 or 20 games.
Undisputed world champions 2006–present [change]
Variously, 12-game classical match format and double-round all-play-all tournament.
Women's World Champions [change]
|Vera Menchik||1927–1944||Russia / Czechoslovakia / England|
|Lyudmila Rudenko||1950–1953||Soviet Union / Ukraine|
|Elisabeth Bykova||1953–1956||Soviet Union / Russia|
|Olga Rubtsova||1956–1958||Soviet Union / Russia|
|Elisabeth Bykova||1958–1962||Soviet Union / Russia|
|Nona Gaprindashvili||1962–1978||Soviet Union / Georgia|
|Maia Chiburdanidze||1978–1991||Soviet Union / Georgia|
|Xie Jun||1991–1996||People's Republic of China|
|Susan Polgar||1996–1999||Hungary / United States|
|Xie Jun||1999–2001||People's Republic of China|
|Zhu Chen||2001–2004||People's Republic of China|
|Xu Yuhua||2006–2008||People's Republic of China|
|Yifan Hou||2010–2012||People's Republic of China|
Other pages [change]
- Murray H.J.R. (1913). A history of chess. Benjamin Press (originally published by Oxford University Press). ISBN 0-936317-01-9. OCLC 13472872.
- Winter, Edward G. (ed) 1981. World chess champions. Pergamon. ISBN 0-08-024094-1.
- Hooper, David and Whyld, Kenneth 1992. The Oxford Companion to Chess 2nd ed, Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-19-866164-9