Polyglots who are chess players

I am curious about which other polyglots or language enthusiats are chess players.

I speak and write 9 languages and I play chess in our chess club since 2016 as well as online on the websites Lichess.org and Online-schaken.nl and in the café in my own city.

I am fluent with the chess terminology in German, Dutch, English and I have some knoweldge of the chess terminology in French.


I’ve been playing chess since I was a child (with some multi-year breaks when I didn’t have much free time - indeed, I last played over-the-board chess in early 2020) and I’m what they call in the UK an average club player, with a FIDE standard rating in the 1400s (I once got within a point of 1500, then started losing more often!) and online chess.com ratings that vary widely massively depending on the time control - the longer the better!

Online, I mainly play bullet games (a good way to while away a couple of minutes, though I’m truly terrible at playing that quickly!) but I also play for England in the World and European leagues on chess.com at daily chess (3-day per move time limit, where you can move pieces around while analysing each move, making it the equivalent of postal chess in the distant past), which gives me lots of time to think and sometimes the chance to chat with my opponents about the game in other languages, e.g. if we play France, Germany, Austria, Spain, Switzerland, etc, and my opponent is the friendly type.

I imagine language skills (e.g. pattern recognition, even though it’s a very different kind of pattern recognition) transfer over to chess to at least some extent, even if it’s only a very small extent.

Hi Steven as a fellow chess player and polyglot,

I once registerd on Chess.com, but I don’t use it any more. I play rapid and blitz chess on Lichess, but always with increments. I have never played and will never play bullet games. On Online-Schaken I play correspondence chess with the chat in Dutch.

On Lichess I use several of my languages for chat comunication.


I played chess as a kid and picked it up again in 2019, I play pretty regularly on both chess.com and lichess. I don’t really use languages much unless it’s to understand what insults and swear words the opponents are saying, but I sometimes watch Russian chess commentary

I used to play chess a lot and took part in tournaments regularly as a child and as a student. I sometimes use chess books to learn languages. But I am now meaner with my time and less willing to sacrifice an evening, let alone a day, to play club or tournament chess.

I’ve been playing chess since I was a child as well, though I only really began to learn it properly in my 20s. I play daily on chess.com and occasionally on LiChess as well

Hi @Steven, @Ewan, @Timothy, @Elise!

the difference with me is that I’m a “Spätentwicklerin” with chess (in contrast to my hobby career with foreigen languages) and as a consequence of that my chess levels remain modest. A FIDE - rating of 1400 / 1500 is already very high for me, if I have such players as my opponents.

I will get to experience this, as I am going to take part in the “Herbst Open” in Mülheim an der Ruhr in Germany. They refer to my FIDE - rating, but all players will only play for German DWZ - rating points.

I am not at all active on chess.com, but I do have an account there. My online chess activities are on Lichess.org and my name there is “Jolien”.