Blog Post #72: Appreciation of Beauty

Dear Readers,

I love to see, and appreciate with an attitude of gratitude, so much beauty in the natural world God created, as well as in the kind faces, words and actions of people who reflect God’s love through the way they live.

A recent father and son photo.

I just finished reading Dr. Wayne W. Dyer’s ’10 Secrets for Success and Inner Peace’, which is a wonderful book (first published way back in 2001) that I recommend really highly.

A quick wee Maths puzzle that I still find to be quite beautiful is this: What is the smallest whole number which is the sum of four consecutive prime numbers and is also the sum of six consecutive prime numbers? The answer is given at the end of this blog post.

One of my newest friends on Facebook is a gentleman named John who lives in America. John very kindly wrote: “I have been enjoying your chess books for the last 20 years. Thank you for writing them.”

Among my absolute favourite treats in chess are the ingenious studies composed early last century by Leonid Kubbel. I find the following one, with White to play and win, to be particularly elegant, and I believe that John and other chess enthusiasts will have great fun solving it, too! (I did include some chess studies in my books, but I only got to know the one below more recently. Again, the solution is given at the end of this blog post.)

White to play and win (a lovely study composed by Leonid Kubbel in 1925).

Wishing everyone a really good day now,

Paul Motwani xxx

P.S.=Puzzle Solutions!

As promised, here they are:-

In the number puzzle, 72 = 13 + 17 + 19 + 23 = 5 + 7 + 11 + 13 + 17 + 19.

That was a fitting solution to have in Blog Post #72 !!

In the beautiful chess study, White forces a win with 1 Ne3+ Kg3 (the move of best resistance) 2 Qg4+ Kf2 3 Qf4+ Ke2 4 Qf1+! Kd2 (4…Kxe3 loses to the skewering check 5 Qe1+ followed by Qxe7) 5 Qd1+ Kc3 6 Qc2+ Kb4 (6…Kd4 walks into the knight-fork 7 Nf5+) 7 Qb2+ Nb3 (or 7…Ka5 8 Nc4+ Ka6 9 Qb6#) 8 Qa3+!! Kxa3 9 Nc2#, checkmate!




Author: Paul A. Motwani

My name is Paul Motwani, but my colleagues, my students and their parents mostly call me "Mr. Mo"! My middle initial, A, stands for Anthony, because I was born on the official feast day of St. Anthony of Padua, the patron saint of miracles and of lost souls. I love teaching Mathematics and Chess, and giving fun-packed talks and shows in schools and clubs. The popular ingredients of Math, Chess, Mystery and Magic are my "Fantastic Four", and I give prizes too! I am an International Chess Grandmaster, and (loooooong ago!) I was the World Under-17 Champion. I am the author of five published chess books and hundreds of newspaper articles. I live with my wonderful wife and son in Belgium. I also love music, movies and puzzles. I blog at My e-mail address is You can find me on Facebook, too.

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