hist-games: Magyar Games and Tibetan Mig Mang

P Shotwell pshotwell at gmail.com
Sun Mar 2 14:26:16 PST 2008


It was pointed out to me by a friend that the mig mang game (usual spelling)
could have come from Tibet and/or Mongolia with the Mongol invasions. The L
patterns are indeed the beginning shapes and the game is played as was
described in the post. See:
http://members.tripod.com/Mongolian_Page/games/mingmang.html
http://www.di.fc.ul.pt/~jpn/gv/mingmang.htm
It also seems to be described at
disk.jabbim.cz/darktatka at njs.netlab.cz/h6.pdf
although the board is 13x13 and the text is in Czechoslovakian.  Can anyone
translate this?

The name means 'many eyes,' but does not refer to the 'eyes' of go. Instead,
it is commonly said to refer to the intersections, although common sense
might say that it actually refers to the squares between them. However, I
don't know of any Tibetan game that places the pieces there instead of on
the intersections.

The name is also used for Tibetan go, which was played on 17x17 boards. By
the time of the Magyars, Chinese boards were 19x19, which is perhaps what
the '18x18' sized board would look like to a non-playing observer. For
further information on Tibetan go and the history of Chinese go, see my
book, 'Go! More Than a Game' (Tuttle 2005) and my more extensive writings at
www.usgo.org/bobhighlibrary, which has pictures of two old massive stone
boards that were recently found..

I also have a request--I am working on an appendix to the Tibetan go article
on the origins of the strange rules of the traditional form and am looking
for someone who has an extensive knowledge of it. Any leads would be greatly
appreciated!

Peter Shotwell
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