Directory:Govert Westerveld

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Govert Westerveld
II International Congress Moriscos, Ojós 2015
Residence Blanca, Murcia, Spain
Born 1947-05-23
Monnickendam, Holland
Known for I'm known for my historical research on Chess, Draughts, La Celestina and the Moriscos
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Reference Latitude: 38°10′41.02″N
Longitude: 1°22′11.4″W

Govert Westerveld (born May 23, 1947) is a Dutch writer, hispanist,[1] independent researcher, chess[2], alquerque-12[3] and draughts historian [4] based in Murcia, Spain. He is also an official chronicler of Blanca, Murcia and a corresponding member of Real Academia Alfonso X el Sabio. He has published over 80 books on history of chess, draughts, alquerque-12, La Celestina,[5] and Spanish history.[6]

Early Life and Education

Westerveld was born, in 1947, in Monnickendam, Netherlands. In 1963, he defeated Ton Sijbrands, an international draughts player and became Dutch Youth Champion[7] and was qualified for Senior National Championship in the Netherlands. In 1965 he was ranked no.3 in Noord Holland for the Provincial Senior Championship.

Westerveld received his diploma in agriculture and business administration (1964-1984) through distance education from the high schools and universities in the Netherlands and USA. He also received a diploma in International Marketing from the University of Murcia. He received his doctorate degree in 1996 from Columbia Southern University.[8]

Professional Career

In 1978 Westerveld was cofounder, with a current and future rector and three professors of the University of Murcia, of the company Zoster S.A. (Zeneta, Murcia) destined for manufacturing of natural extracts. There he was in charge of sales abroad and the innovation of natural products destined for the pharmaceutical and alimentary industries. His role in the company was that of promoter of many natural extracts, among them the sweetener Neohesperidin Dihdrochalcone made from oranges. After the company was bought by a multinational he created his own firm in 1989 with the mission to research and promote natural extracts and products in other industries. Among them was the Rosemary Extract in the company Fufural Español S.A. This company, later called Nutrafur, produced high qualities and quantities, which again resulted in an acquisition of the company, this time by an Israeli multinational, in 2015, three years after retirement of Westerveld.

Historical Research

From 1986 to 1992, Westerveld wrote many articles on the origin of the game of draughts for the Dutch magazine Het Nieuwe Damspel. In 1990 he published Revista Internacional de Damas which was recognized by the World Draughts Federations as an official representation of Spanish draughts. In 1992 he published his first book on the game of checkers in Spain followed by five more. In 1994, Westerveld published his works on the influence of the Queen Isabella I of Castile on the game of draughts and chess, explaining the fact that the modern chess game and draughts game was a Spanish invention.[9] [10] [11] In 1998, he was appointed as a history member of the Federación Española de Ajedrez, the governing body of chess in Spain. Since 2005 Westerveld is one of the two official historians of the Federation Mondiale de Jeu de  Dames.[12]

In January 2002, he was appointed unanimously as an official chronicler[13] of Blanca, Murcia, along with Angel Rios Martinez, by the plenary of the municipality of Blanca. Currently their research focus on new publications on the history of Blanca. Later that year, in December 2002, Westerveld was elected as a corresponding member of the Real Academia Alfonso X el Sabio,[14] taking into account the merits of knowledge and relation to the culture of the Region of Murcia.

In 2004, the Generalitat Valenciana recognized and published Westerveld's work La reina Isabel la Católica: su reflejo en la dama poderosa de valencia, cuna del ajedrez moderno y origen del juego de damas. The book explains the hypothesis of Isabella I of Castile and the documentary evidence found in Scachs d'amor, with revelations of significance national and global impacts.[13][14][15] [16]

In September 2005, Westerveld was unanimously elected as a member of Asociación Internacional de Hispanistas.[1] He is also a full member of the Asociación de Hispanistas del Benelux.[17]

Photo Gallery



  • Historia de Blanca, lugar mas islamizado de la region murciana, años 711-1700. ISBN 84-923151-0-5 (1997)
  • De invloed van de Spaanse koningin Isabel la Catolica op de nieuwe sterke dame in de oorsprong van het dam- en moderne schaakspel; Spaanse literatuur, jaren: 1283-1700; ISBN  9788448237189 (1997)
  • Blanca, "El Ricote" de Don Quijote: expulsión y regreso de los moriscos del ultimo enclave islamico mas grande de España, años 1613-1654. ISBN 84-923151-1-3. (2001)
  • La reina Isabel la Catolica: su reflejo en la dama poderosa de Valencia, cuna del ajedrez moderno y origen del juego de damas. ISBN 
84-482-3718-8. In collaboration with José Antonio Garzón Roger (2004).
  • Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Ana Felix y el morisco Ricote del Valle de Ricote en "Don Quijote II" del año 1615. ISBN 9788492315154 (2007)
  • Biografia de Maurice Raichenbach, Tomo II. ISBN 978-1-291-68769-9 (2013)
  • The History of Checkers (Draughts). ISBN 978-1-291-66732-5 (2013)
  • Mis Años Jovenes Al Lado de Ton Sijbrands y Harm Wiersma, Futuros Campeones Mundiales. ISBN 978-1-291-68365-3 (2013)
  • Your visit to Blanca, a village in the famous Ricote Valley. ISBN: 978-1-326-23882-7 (2015)
  • The Ambassador Juan Ramirez de Lucena, the father of the chessbook writer Lucena. ISBN 978-1-326-37728-1 (2015)
  • The Birth of a New Bishop in Chess. ISBN 978-1-326-37044-2 (2015)
  • History of the Holy Week Traditions in the Ricote Valley. Blanca. ISBN 978-1-326-57094-1 (2016)
  • The Origin of the Checkers and Modern Chess Game. Volume I. ISBN 978-1-326-60212-3 (2016)
  • Researches on the mysterious Aragonese author of La Celestina. ISBN 978-1-326-81331-4 (2016)
  • Muslim history of the Region of Murcia (715-1080). Volume I. ISBN 978-1-326-79278-7 (2016)
  • Following the Footsteps of Spanish Chess Master Lucena in Italy. ISBN 978-1-326-81682-7 (2016)
  • Ibn Sab’in del Valle de Ricote; El último lugar islámico en España. ISBN 978-1-326-99819-6 (2017)