The maiden contest match in 1886 between Steinitz and Zukertort is widely recognized as a world championship. Steinitz would triumph, becoming the world's first champion. From 1886 to 1946, the winner defined the rules. Therefore, they were forcing any challenger to invest a significant sum of money aiming to overthrow the defending champion.
In 1946 Alexander Alekhine, who was the reigning world champion, passed away. FIDE took over control of the World Championship event. The World Championship started the following year and has thrived to become the major sport tournaments that FIDE holds. A series of chess sport championships were held every three years from 1948 through 1993 to select a new challenger.
Garry Kasparov, the incumbent World Champion, split from FIDE in 1993. His defection resulted in a rival claiming World Champion's title for the next thirteen years. At the 2006 World Chess Championship, the titles were merged. Since then, FIDE is in charge of chess matches worldwide. Now FIDE holds the World Chess Championship after every two years.
Magnus Carlsen domination
Magnus Carlsen of Norway is the current world champion, having held the title since 2013. Carlsen is also the youngest player ever to reach a rating of 2800. In his teens, the Norwegian burst into the chess elite but, due to his discontent with the format, he withdrew from the 2010 candidates. He came back three years later winning the candidates' tournament in London. He outperformed Vladimir Kramnik in tiebreaks and was named the challenger. In the same year, he won the world championship by defeating Viswanathan Anand by a score of 612-312 in the title match.