Written by Michael McDowell
Comins Mansfield, the greatest British composer of directmate two-movers, was born on 14th
June 1896 at Witheridge, Devon. He came to prominence during the Good Companions era
(1913-24), and many of his early masterpieces were made while serving with the Royal Field
Artillery in the trenches of France.
Throughout a problem career spanning seven decades he remained the master of the
“traditional” style of two-mover where the interest lies in the post-key play,
though his ventures into the realm of try play problems produced a number of memorable
works. In 1944 he published Adventures in Composition, an attempt to teach the art
of two-move composition.
Mansfield held the post of President of the BCPS between 1949 and 1951. He served as
President of the FIDE Problem Commission between 1963 and 1971, and was one of the first
four composers to be awarded the title of Grandmaster of the FIDE for Chess Composition in
1972. He died on 28th March 1984. The three-volume work Complete Mansfield, by
Barry Barnes, contains his complete output of almost 1200 problems.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 15 November 2011 15:16