A Forgotten Tournament at Simpson's
The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News (April 11, 1885): "Punch last week (April 4th) did chess the honour of giving a cartoon wherein are presented some of the leading members of our fraternity. It is a fancy sketch in some particulars, but at the same time perfectly true to life. The central figure, with hat on head, arms folded, and fun-flashing eyes, is Sir Robert Peel. Next to him is the world-renowned J.H. Blackburne, looking somewhat like his portrait in 'Chess Life-Pictures.' On the extreme left of the picture is Mr. P.T. Duffy, so long known as the president of the defunct Westminster Papers, and now the ruler of the Illustrated London News column. Next to him is Mr. Wordsworth Donisthorpe, one of the pillars - a pillar of fire, I may say, for he is a guide as well as support - of the Grand Chess Divan. Over a chess board are two warriors engaged - one of them, with massive head and beetling brow, is the hero of the last Bath meeting, the Rev. W. Wayte. His opponent, with thoughtful face and board-piercing glance, one arm supporting his classic head and the other stretched out to administer, no doubt, a direful coup, is, as the decoration on his breast proclaims, the world's champion, J.H. Zukertort. Resting on his back of the professor's chair, with flowing beard and amused aspect, is the portly form of G.A. MacDonnell. Between Mr. Wayte and Mr. Duffy, sits, calm and contemplative, the racy writer and acute analyst whose incubrations weekly grace the pages of The Field, L. Hoffer. Between the combatants, peering at the board, shines the genial countenance of the uncrowned king of the City Club, H.F. Gastineau. In front of and to the right of the picture, two brawny personages are pourtrayed, evidently engaged in friendly duel for Caissa's honours; one holds a diagram in his hand, whilst the other points out a 'cook' which he has just discovered in the problem it contains. From the countenance of the 'cooker' flashes gleeful humour, and from that of the examiner astonishment, not unmingled with something like horror. In them we recognise J.W. Abbott, the eminent composer, and Thomas Hewitt, a grand tower of strength in the kingdom of chess. As they have each hit upon a different mate in the problem under review, I think I may, in more senses than one, call them co-mates. Behind Mr. Hewitt, and gazing upon him with eyes of amazement, sits one of the ablest critics as well as players of our day, the worthy Mr. Norwood Potter - a striking likeness this, but for the hat, which is not quite high enough. Still further behind the duelists are Mr. E. Thorold and the back of Mr. Horwitz's venerable head - the former an acknowledged Murat in our chess army, and the latter an unsurpassed strategist in all chess endings. Two other figures deserve notice; one is that of quondam champion, W. Steinitz, a player second to no man living, a gladiator bold and grand as ever set foot in the chess arena. Sadly looks he, as though musing upon his past triumphs, and mourning over departed friends. The last figure to be noticed is that which sits under Punch's challenge to the world. A wonderful likeness it is of the 'old Frenchman' who for some years past has been one of the fixtures at Simpson's. A pleasant, good-humoured, clever fellow, to see whom with his large eyeglass half a yard in front of one of his joy-gleaming orbs is well worth a visit to the Divan."
The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News (April 18, 1885): "In my description of Punch's picture of chess players I forgot to mention that the ceiling of the saloon in which the players are gathered forms a chess board on which is depicted a problem composed by Mr. P.T. Duffy. The smoke rises from multitudinous pipes and cigars and curls into spirit wreaths, which as they reach the ceiling become condensed into the chess pieces that go to make the problem a very pretty and humorous idea."
Other details of the cartoon: Hoffer is reading The Field. At Zukertort's feet lies The Chess Monthly, of which he was the editor. MacDonnell holds in his right hand The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News. He was chess editor of this paper. Potter ran the chess department of Land and Water. On his hat is written 'Land and Water.' The three pictures hanging on the wall at the right depict (from left to right) Samuel S. Boden, Adolf Anderssen and Paul Morphy.
Simpson's Divan, the well-known chess resort in London, accommodated in 1884 a tournament which has passed into oblivion. This seems to be somewhat strange since four prominent London players and a handful promising young players made an appearance.
Joseph H. Blackburne, Isidor Gunsberg, George A. MacDonnell and James Mason (in alphabetic order) were the leading contestants. Other entrants of reputation were Wordsworth Donisthorpe, Antony A.G. Guest, A. Hirsch, George A. Hooke, Rudolf J. Loman, M. Michael, W.H.A. Mundell, Henry A. Reeves, and Herbert W. Trenchard. The remaining participants - the lesser Gods, so to speak - were Aicheson, G.F.H. Collinson, Léon Febvret, S. van Guelder, Keough (or Keogh), Richard Pilkington, and John O.S. Thursby.
Six of the contestants had played in the London International Tournament of 1883: two (Blackburne and Mason) in the main event, and four (Gunsberg, MacDonnell, Mundell and Febvret) in the Vizayanagaram Tournament.
An original rule of the handicap was that each contestant had to play one game against the other persons taking part, but the organizers changed this regulation because of the large number of entrants.1 Twenty players signed in, which was more than expected. To prevent the contest from dragging on endlessly, the competitors were divided in two sections of ten each, every player having to meet every other player in his own section.2 The two winners of each section had to play for first and second, and for third and fourth prizes, the best out of three games to decide, and a draw - which was a rule for the whole tournament - counting one half each.
The handicap tournament had five classes. In each game the higher classed player had to give odds. First-class players (I) gave pawn and move to second-class players (II), pawn and two moves to third-class players (III), knight to fourth-class players (IV), and rook to fifth-class players (V). A second-class played had to give pawn and move to a third-class contestant, pawn and two moves to a fourth-class competitors, and so forth. Participants of the same class played on even terms.3 The scale of the handicap was the same as that adopted by the City of London Chess Club.
The sections were determined by lot on the first day of play. The entries in section A were Blackburne (I), Gunsberg (I), Collinson (II), Guest (II), Hirsch (II), Mundell (II), van Guelder (II), Thursby (III), Pilkington (IV), and Keough (V). Section B had the following contestants: MacDonnell (I), Mason (I), Donisthorpe (II), Hooke (II), Loman (II), Michael (II), Reeves (II), Febvret (III), Trenchard (III), and Aicheson (V).
George A. MacDonnell, James Mason
The entrance fee was 10s 6d. The organizing committee provided four prizes, the proprietors of Simpson's Divan offering five guineas prize money.4 The first prize was £8 8s., second £5 5s., third £3 3s., and fourth £2 2s.5 Playing hours were 1.00 p.m. - 6.00 p.m. and 7.00 p.m. - 11.00 p.m., however, the contestants were allowed to play in the morning. That is, by mutual consent. Competitors had to play at least two games in a week; no playing schedule was made.6 The time limit was twenty moves per hour.7
According to Leopold Hoffer, editor of The Chess Monthly and The Field, the arrangement of the tourney had been a cushy job.8
As far as we recollect, this is the first important contest which has been arranged without the customary tedious preliminary negotiations. As soon as the idea was broached, a few gentlemen were asked if they were inclined to play and on their replying in the affirmative a few necessary rules were drawn up; a committee elected, the proprietors of the Divan promised £5 towards the prizes, and the preliminaries were thus settled.
Hoffer was manager of the affair. The members of the committee: W.H. Cubison, Thomas Hewitt and A. Skelton.9 The Morning Post of May 5, 1884, announced the tournament for the first time, but it took more than two weeks before play began. The competition started on May 21, 1884.
Joseph H. Blackburne, Isidor Gunsberg
The tournament progressed with fair speed in the first week of play: eleven games were finished in section A and ten in section B. The contestants kept up the pace in the second week. Nine more games were played in section A, of which two were adjourned. In section B another twelve games were finished, and one adjourned.
After the energetic start little progress was made in the third week. Blackburne got indisposed, MacDonnell left London, and Febvret retired because of his health. In spite of the delay Hoffer had still good hopes that the tournament would come to a speedy end. He believed in a fortnight.10 It turned out differently from what he hoped.
The fourth week of the joust brought forth only seven games, and week number five was about as unenterprising as the preceeding week had been, even though Blackburne returned at the battlefield after his illness. The remaining of the tournament was a lingering affair. Play in the sections dragged on seven to eight weeks for want of a playing schedule.
John O.S. Thursby, Rudolf J. Loman
Some of the delay might have been caused by the excessive heat. The Morning Post of June 30, 1884, blamed the extreme weather for the poor attendance. It is, however, more likely that the contestants were in no hurry to play.
MacDonnell, chess editor of The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News, critisized the advance of the tournament in the issue of June 28, 1884: "The London Tournament at Simpson's Divan, has been making scarcely progress during the last ten days. Some of the quasi-combatants devote so much time to the study of the score list that they have none to spare for the performance of their martial duties."
A week later (The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News of July 5, 1884) he summoned Hoffer, the manager of the competition, to take action:
The London Tournament at Simpson's Divan is now progressing at the rate of half a game per month. If the competitors only continue to display the activity and courage that have characterised their conduct as a body during the last six weeks, I cherish the fond hope of seeing the tournament finished the day before next midsummer. Mr. L. Hoffer, most worthy of managers, please make one or two rules to meet the exigencies of the position, and coerce the truants into fighting or resigning.
Whether MacDonnell's appeal caused the desired effect, is unknown. Whatever the case might have been, he stated in his column of July 12, 1884, that the tourney had made good progress during the previous week, and would probably be brought to a conclusion in the following week. Play in the sections came to an end in the second or third week of July.
Herbert Trenchard, Henry A. Reeves
The results each week were (as far as is known):
First week, section A: Guest - Blackburne ½-½, van Guelder - Blackburne 0-1, Collinson - Blackburne 0-1, Blackburne - Pilkington 1-0, Collinson - Gunsberg 0-1, Gunsberg - Pilkington 1-0, Pilkington - Guest 0-1, Hirsch - Keough 1-0, Pilkington - van Guelder 0-1, Collinson - Keough 0-1, Pilkington - Thursby 0-1; section B: Loman - MacDonnell 0-1, Donisthorpe - MacDonnell 1-0, Reeves - MacDonnell 0-1, Hooke won against Loman (colors are unknown), Trenchard - Hooke 1-0, Michael - Donisthorpe 0-1, Trenchard - Donisthorpe 1-0, Donisthorpe - Aicheson 1-0, Michael - Aicheson 0-1, Trenchard won against Febvret.11
Second week, section A: van Guelder - Gunsberg 0-1, Thursby - Gunsberg 0-1, Guest - Hirsch adjourned, Hirsch won against Mundell, Hirsch - Collinson adjourned, Thursby - Hirsch 0-1, Thursby - van Guelder 1-0, van Guelder - Keough 0-1, Mundell - Keough 1-0; section B: Loman - Mason 0-1, Donisthorpe - Mason 0-1, Hooke - MacDonnell adjourned, MacDonnell - Aicheson 1-0, Donisthorpe won against Loman, Loman - Aicheson ½-½, Michael won against Hooke, Reeves - Donisthorpe 0-1, Trenchard - Reeves 0-1, Michael won against Hooke, Trenchard - Michael ½-½, Aicheson - Trenchard 0-1.12
Third week, section A: Guest - Gunsberg ½-½, Hirsch - Gunsberg 0-1, Guest won against Collinson, Hirsch won against van Guelder, Pilkington - Hirsch 0-1, Mundell drew against Collinson, Thursby - Mundell 1-0, Thursby - Collinson 0-1, Pilkington - Collinson 0-1; section B: Mason - Aicheson 1-0, Reeves won against Michael.13
Fourth week, section A: Thursby - Guest 0-1, Guest - Keough 1-0, Keough - Thursby 0-1; section B: Hooke - Mason ½-½, Trenchard - Mason 0-1, Trenchard - MacDonnell ½-½, Reeves - Aicheson 1-0.14
Fifth week, section A: Thursby - Blackburne 0-1, Blackburne - Keough 1-015; section B: Reeves - Mason 0-1, Loman - Reeves ½-½(?), Loman won against Michael, Trenchard - Loman 0-1, Reeves won against Hooke, Hooke - Aicheson 0-1.16
The Field quitted publishing weekly standings after the issue of June 28, 1884. The death of Paul Morphy, the meeting of the Counties Chess Association in Bath (won by William Wayte) and the attempt to establish a British Chess Association seem to have interfered with the weekly account of the tournament's headway.
Sixth week, section A: Gunsberg - Blackburne ½-½, Guest - Hirsch 1-0, and Guest won against van Guelder; section B: Mason - MacDonnell 1-0.17
Seventh week, section A: Mundell - Blackburne 1-0, Mundell - Gunsberg 1-0.18
The Morning Post (July 14, 1884) presented the winners in the sections: Guest in section A and Mason in section B. The fight for second place in both groups was not yet decided when this report was published. Either Blackburne or Gunsberg would take second place in section A, and Donisthorpe or MacDonnell in section B.
Wordsworth Donishtorpe, Antony A.G. Guest
The Chess Monthly of September 1884 (page 3) published the final scores.
+ won by default; - lost by default.
Guest and Mason seem to have played the first game of their tie match at about the same time that play in the sections was concluded. Guest won. His victory caused confusion. Several papers reported that he had won the tournament.19 The London correspondent of The British Chess Magazine corrected his mistake in the issue of October 1884 (page 362):
I can assure you readers that I have had a lively time of it over my unfortunate blunder anent the Divan Tourney. My friend of Purssell's was the first to give me the pleasing intelligence of my error. "Seen Mason lately?" was his greeting as he met me in the Strand, "I know he is looking for you." "No!" was my response, "I haven't seen him for some time." "Ah I thought not! or you wouldn't be smiling so," and a very grim smile indeed lightened (or darkened) my friend's face. "Smiling! why shouldn't I smile when I see him?" "Why shouldn't you smile? Why, didn't he win the first prize in the Divan tournament and haven't you put him down as being defeated by Guest and only winning the second? Smile! why he's going to lynch you!" However Mr. Mason was made of other stuff and bears no malice for my blunder, which after all was not so much mine as that of a person who assured me that he was present when Mr. Guest actually won the deciding game. In this he was mistaken and I fell into the error by following his statement.
Thus, Mason had won the remaining two games of the tie match, which allowed him to take the first prize.
Guest won the second prize, and Donisthorpe and Gunsberg divided third and fourth prizes. Blackburne and Gunsberg should have played a tie match for second place in Section A. Blackburne, however, resigned without competing. He went out of town for the sake of his health.20
Perhaps not surprising: the match between Guest and Mason was also delayed. The former left London after the first confrontation. He visited Bath to witness the proceedings of the Counties Chess Association. This explains the long interval between the first and the second game of the match.
The first game of the tournament was played on May 21, 1884, the final on August 11, 1884. The joust lasted altogether almost three months. Or to be more precisely, it took 83 days to finish 93 games, of which eleven were won or lost by default and one was never played (Michael - MacDonnell). This is much the same as an average of one game a day.
Twenty-four games and one position have been found.
Rudolf J. Loman - George A. MacDonnell
e4 d6 2. d4 Nf6 3. Bd3
than 3. Bc4, in which case Black could capture the pawn in spite of the
violent attack ensuing, e.g.:
3. Bc4 Nxe4 4. Qh5+ g6 5. Qd5 Nf6 6. Qf7+ Kd7 7. Be6+ Kc6 8. d5+ Kb6 9.
Be3+ c5 10. dxc6+ Kxc6. There are, of course, many other variations; but
none of them dangerous for Black.
... e5 4. dxe5
the pawn relieves Black's position, and enables him to develop his
... dxe5 5. Nf3 Bc5
cannot take the king's pawn, because of 6. ... Bxf2+ 7. Kxf2 Qd4+, etc.
0-0 Bg4 7. Nc3 Nc6 8. Bg5 Nd4 9. Nd5
safer course to adopt would have been 9. Be2. The text move, independent
of its hazardous nature, only furthers Black's object, viz.: to open the
king's knight's file for attacking purposes, after castling on the
... Nxf3+ 10. gxf3 Bh3 11. Re1 h6 12. Nxf6+
The text move was perhaps compulsory, and, although White has to a certain extent lost the opportunity of making the best of the odds received, yet he is still in possession of the pawn plus, and could make a fair stand.
... gxf6 13. Bh4 Qe7
the best plan would have been 14. Kh1, followed by 15. Rg1, etc. Of
course White intended to free his queen by threatening Qh5+; but he
overlooked Black's 15. ... h5.
... Qg7+ 15. Bg3 h5 16. fxe5 fxe5 17. Be2
has no means to prevent the immediate loss of a piece. If 17. Bf1, then
17. ... h4 18. Bxh3 hxg3, and wins.
... h4 18. Bh5+ Ke7 19. Qd5 Bd6 20. Qxb7 hxg3 21. hxg3 Rxh5 22. Qxa8 Qxg3+
very brilliant termination, such as even Mr. Ruskin would admire.
fxg3 23. Bc5+
June 28, 1884 (notes by Leopold Hoffer*).
(September 1884, page 25) offered the ending of this game (after Black's
Antony A.G. Guest - Joseph H. Blackburne
e4 Nh6 2. d4 Nf7 3. Nf3 e6 4. Bd3 Be7
usual continuation - and preferable to the text move - here is 4. ...
Perhaps pawn to c5 might still have been better, although Black would
have lost a move by this tardy advance.
h4 c5 7. e5 h6
7. ... cxd4, White would obtain a winning attack with 8. Bxh7+, leading
to a well-known variation frequently arising in positions at the odds of
pawn and two.
dxc5 Nc6 9. Qe2
very powerful move, putting even Mr. Blackburne's ability to a severe
... Bxc5 10. Qe4 Re8 11. Qh7+ Kf8 12. Bg6 Nd4 13. Bxf7 Kxf7 14. Bxh6
Nxf3+ 15. gxf3 Rg8 16. Rg1
desperate remedy, which, however, succeeded; but Black has no saving
move whatever at this juncture.
hasty move on the part of White. He should have played 17. Ke2 which
would have won the game right off, e.g.:
17. Ke2 Bxg1 18. Rxg1 d5 (forced) 19. Qg6+ Kf8 20. Bxg7+ Ke7 21. Bf6+
Kd7 22. Qf7+ Kc6 23. Bxd8, and Black dare not capture the rook because
of 24. Qf7, mate. Any other line of play seems still more unfavorable
... Qxh4+ 18. Ke3 Qxh6+ 19. Qxh6 gxh6 20. Ne4 d5 21. exd6
White would have done better had he not taken the offered pawn. More
promising would have been 21. Nd6+ Kf8 22. Rxg8+ Kxg8 23. Rg1+ Kh8
(best) 24. Ne8 Bd7 25. Nf6 Bc6 26. Rg6, winning a pawn, when White would
have an easy ending with a pawn plus and knight against bishop.
... Bd7 22. c4 b6 23. b4 Rxg1 24. Rxg1 a5 25. a3 axb4 26. axb4 Bc6 27.
c5 Ra3+ 28. Kf4 Rb3 29. Ra1 Rxb4 30. Ra7+ Kg6 31. d7 Rd4
Blackburne pointed out here that, had he played 31. ... Bxd7, followed
by 32. ... bxc6, his chance for a draw would have been lessened, owing
to the advance of the adverse king to e5.
cxb6 Bxd7 33. b7 Rb4 34. b8Q Rxb8 35. Rxd7 Rf8+
Black's modus operandi
becomes apparent now. The king cannot advance to e5 now, but must
protect the pawn.
Kg3 h5 37. Nf2 e5 38. Nd3 Rf5 39. Kh4 Kf6 40. Ne1 e4
game. This difficult ending was played with great skill and judgment by
May 31, 1884 (notes by Leopold Hoffer*).
Wordsworth Donisthorpe - George A. MacDonnell
1. e4 e6 2. d4 c5 3. c3 d5 4. e5 Nc6 5. Nf3 Bd7
1. e4 e6 2. d4 c5 3. c3 d5 4. e5 Nc6 5. Nf3 Bd7
quite necessary; but Black intended castling on the queen's side, and
developed with that object in view.
Bd3 Qb6 7. 0-0 g6 8. b3 Nh6 9. Be3 Nf5 10. Bxf5 gxf5
this evidently enters in Black's plan, and if he could succeed in
castling queen's rook the open file would be the means of framing a
Ng5 h5 12. h4
risky. 12. f4 would have been much sounder.
... cxd4 13. cxd4 f4
whole of Black's efforts up to this point were concentrated upon
breaking White's center, which he cleverly accomplished with the move in
the text. For some unaccountable reason, however, he failed to reap the
advantage of it at the very moment when his manoeuvers succeeded.
sacrifice of the piece is not sound; but White was justified in
venturing upon it rather than lose the queen's pawn. If 14. Bxf4, then
14. ... Qxd4 15. Qxd4 Nxd4, with the better game.
appears that Black could safely capture the bishop, and probably emerge
with a won game, e.g.: 14. ...
fxe3 15. Qf7+ Kd8 16. Qf6+ Kc7 17. Qxh8 exf2+ 18. Kh1 (If 18. Rxf2,
then 18. ... Qxd4, etc.)
18. ... Qxd4 19. Na3 Bxa3 20. Qxa8 Qxh4+ 21. Nh3 Bb2 22. Rab1
Bxe5, with a superior position.
Bxd4 Qxd4 16. Nc3 Bg7
... Be7 would have been somewhat better.
ingenious, and the speediest way of winning the game whether Black
captures the knight or moves the queen. In the latter case 19. ... Nf6+
would leave Black quite a disorganized position.
... exd5 19. Qxd5 0-0-0 20. Nf7 Bc6 21. Qe6+ Bd7 22. Rxd7 Rxd7 23.
Rc1+ Kb8 24. Qxd7 a6 25. Nxh8 Bf8,
White announced mate in five moves.
The Morning Post,
July 14, 1884; The
Chess Monthly, July 1884, pages 336-337 (notes by Leopold Hoffer*).
M. Michael - Wordsworth Donisthorpe
by Anderssen in his match with Morphy, 1858. The obvious object of the
move is to bring the position to a Sicilian with an important move ahead
for the first player.
we have Morphy's authority for the text move, we, nevertheless, are
inclined to prefer 1. ... d5, which neutralizes the above indicated
advantage of the first player.
played here 2. ... Nf6 3. Nc3 d5, etc.
d4 e4 4. e3 Nf6 5. Be2 d5 6. Nc3 c6 7. cxd5? cxd5 8. Nh3 Nc6 9. 0-0
Bd6 10. f3 0-0 11. b4 a6 12. Qb3 Ne7 13. Nf2
to win a pawn, owing to the queen's pawn being pinned.
... Kh8! 14. Bd2 Be6? 15. Kh1
could have won a pawn here as follows: 15. fxe4 fxe4 16. Nfxe4 Nxe4 17.
Nxe4 dxe4 18. Qxe6, etc.
16. f4 b5 17. Rac1 Qd7 18. a4 Rab8 19. axb5 axb5
Ra1 Rb7 21. Ra6 h6
Rfb1 should have been played here. Mr. Donisthorpe overlooked White's
played. The pawn gained might be retained with proper care.
... Qc7 23. Rb1! Rfb8 24. Qa4 g5
24. ... gxf4 25. exf4 e3, winning a piece.
It is a common failing amongst younger players that, as soon as they obtain an advantage, they get excited, and frequently jeopardize by a hasty move a carefully played game. They will have to learn by experience the art of "winning a won game." White ought to have continued with 25. g3, followed by 26. Ra8, so as to relieve the pressure upon the bishop, the sequel would have come by itself.
... Rxb4 26. Rxb4 Rxb4 27. Nb5
is nothing better now, and the game is lost.
... Rxa4 28. Nxc7 Rxa6 29. Nxa6 Nxc6 30. g3 Bc8 31. Nc5 Bxc5 32. dxc5
Nd7 33. Bc3+ Kh7 34. Bd4 Nxd4 35. exd4 Nb8,
after a few more moves White resigned.
The Chess Monthly,
July 1884, pages 335-336 (notes by Leopold Hoffer*).
Henry A. Reeves - George A. MacDonnell
1. e4 e6 2. d4 c5 3. c3 d5 4. e5 Nc6 5. Bd3 Nge7 6. Ne2
Nf3 is more attacking, although the present line of play and the
subsequent development of the knights at f3 and g3 are perfectly sound.
6. ... Bd7 7. 0-0 g6 8. Nd2 Bg7 9. Nf3 0-0 10. Be3 Nf5 11. Ng3 h6 12.
b3 Be8 13. Nxf5 exf5 14. g3 g5 15. Qd2 Qd7
Threatening to win a piece by f4 followed by Qg4+.
16. Qc1 cxd4 17. cxd4 Bh5 18. Be2 Rf7 19. Qb2
White loses time by the queen's moves. The position, however, is such
that any attempt to do more than wait for the course of events might
lead to disaster.
19. ... Raf8 20. Kh1 f4 21. gxf4
A spirited sacrifice, which enables Black to win a useful pawn, and
develop the queen's knight with a strong attack.
22. Bxf4 Rxf4 23. Ng1 g4 24. Rad1 Nxd4
Another beautiful move. The knight cannot be taken without loss of the
25. Rxd4 Bxe5 26. Qd2
If Rfd1, 25. ... Qg7 would win.
26. ... Rxd4 27. Qxh6 Qf5
Threatening to win the queen by Bf4.
28. Qe3 Bg6 29. f3 Qh5 30. h3 Qf5 31. fxg4
This and the preceding move are well played by White,
who fights hard to the end, but the skilful attack of his
adversary is not to be diverted.
31. ... Qe4+ 32. Qf3 Rd2 33. Kg2 Bd4 34. Re1 Qe6 35. Kf1 Be4 36. Qg3 Qf6+
37. Nf3 Bxf3
The Morning Post, June 2, 1884 (notes by
Antony A.G. Guest).
John O.S. Thursby - S. van Guelder
1. e4 Nh6 2. d4 g6 3. Bc4 e6 4. Nf3 Nf7 5. e5 b6 6. Nc3 c6 7. Ne4 Be7 8. Ng3 Na6 9. Qe2 Nc7 10. c3 Bb7 11. a3 c5 12. Be3 cxd4 13. cxd4 Rc8 14. Rc1 Nd5 15. Bxd5 Bxd5 16. Rxc8 Qxc8 17. Qd2 Qc6
Qb5 19. Qc2 Bc6 20. Ne2 Bxf3 21. gxf3 Qd5 22. Qe4 Qxe4 23. fxe4 Bg5 24.
Kd2 Rf8 25. Rc1 Kd8 26. f4 Bh6 27. h4 d6 28. exd6 Nxd6 29. Kd3 Kd7 30.
f5 Bxe3 31. fxe6+ Kxe6 32. Kxe3 Kd7 33.Ng3 Rf7 34. e5 Nf5+ 35. Nxf5 Rxf5
36. Ke4 Rh5 37. Kd5 Rxh4 38.e6+ Kd8
39. Rf1 Ke8 40. Ke5 Rh2 41. Kd6 g5 42. Rc1 Kf8 43. Rc8+ Kg7 44. e7
The Morning Post, June 9 and 16, 1884.
N.N. - N.N.
1. Nxf7+ Bxf7
Or 1. ... Kg8 2. Qh6 Kxf7 3. Qxh7+ Ke8 4. Qe7 mate.
2. Qh6 Rg8 3. Rd8 Be8 4. Rxe8 Qf7 5. Re7,
Wordsworth Donisthorpe - James Mason
1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 c5 4.
c3 Nc6 5. Nf3 cxd4 6. cxd4 Bb4+
The form of defense adopted by
Mr. Mason does not yield any satisfactory result. The position is too
simple, and consequently to the advantage of the odds receiver. The text
move is loss of time, because it would not be advisable to take the
knight so that the bishop remains out of play, when it is urgently
required for defensive purposes on the weak king's side.
7. Nc3 Nge7 8. Bd3 h6
Black could not castle now,
owing to 9. Bxh7+ Kxh7 10. Ng5+ Kg6 11. h4, followed by 12 h5+, etc.
9. 0-0 a6
To prevent the advance of
Knight to b5 after a3.
10. Ne2 Kd7
Had Black castled now, he would
have had to submit to a very strong attack; but hardly more severe than
that which followed his retreat with the king.
11. a3 Ba5 12. b4 Bb6 13. Be3
Kc7 14. Nd2 Kb8
Apparently the king's move
shuts in the rook; but White could easily force the retreat of the
adverse king with Rc1, etc.
15. Nb3 g5 16. Nc5 Bxc5
Painful, but compulsory, so as
to develop the queen's bishop without compelling the queen to remain
17. bxc5 Nf5 18. Rb1 h5 19. Qa4
Kc7 20. Rb6 Rg8 21. Nc3 Rb8 22. Rfb1
Threatening 23. Rxc6 bxc6 24.
Qa5+ K moves 25. Qxd8, and 26. Rxb8, with a piece ahead.
22. ... Nxe3
exchange is forced now because, as indicated above, Black is compelled
to defend the knight with Bd7, when White would reply 23. Bxf5 exf5 24.
23. fxe3 Bd7 24. Bxa6
Up to this point Mr.
Donisthorpe has played remarkably well, and he certainly had a won game
at this juncture. The sacrifice is very tempting, and although it turns
out to be unsound, yet it might be considered justifiable because, in
any case, White remains with three pawns for the piece which would in
most cases be an equivalent; but, perhaps, not against an opponent like
Mr. Mason. After the conclusion of the game, Mr. Donisthorpe pointed out
that, instead of the violent course adopted, the quiet move 24. e4 would
have won the game for White in every variation. Another, but more
complicated variation was pointed out by Mr. Blackburne, viz.: 24. Bb5,
leading to a certain win. If Black captures the bishop, White mates in
four moves with: 24. ... axb5 25. Nxb5+ Kc8 26. Nd6+ K moves 27. Rxb7+
Rxb7 28. Rxb7 mate. If, however, Black does not take the bishop, then
White may proceed with 25. e4, etc.
24. ... bxa6 25. Qxa6 Qc8 26.
Nb5+ Kd8 27. Qxc8+ Rxc8 28. Nd6 Ra8 29. a4
It was pointed out by Mr.
Gunsberg that White could have secured a draw here with 29. Rf1,
followed by 30. Rf7. This is quite correct, and leads to some very
interesting variations. Mr. Donisthorpe, however, had not given up all
hope of winning yet, and thought he might succeed in queening the queen's
29. ... Ke7 30. Ra1 Rgf8 31.
Nb7 Ra7 32. a5 Rfa8 33. a6 Nb8 34. c6
A pawn, of course, is lost now,
and White prefers to keep the rook's pawn.
34. ... Nxc6 35. Nc5 Rb8 36.
Nb7 Nd8 37. Rab1 Nxb7 38. Rxb7
It is immaterial how White
retakes, the pawn would fall in any case.
38. ... Rba8 39. Rc1 Rxb7 40.
axb7 Rb8 41. Rb1 Bc6 42. Rb6 Kd7 43. Kf2 Rxb7 44. Ra6 Rc7 45. Kf3 Ke7
46. h3 Kf7 47. g3 Bb5
The initiation of a very pretty
48. Rb6 Bd3 49. g4 Rc2
Threatening mate in two moves.
50. Rb7+ Kg6 51. gxh5+ Kxh5 52.
Resigns. If 53 Ke3, Black mates
on the move. If 53 Kg3, then
53 ... Bf1, and the mate cannot be averted.
The Field, June 7, 1884 (notes by Leopold Hoffer*); The
Chess Monthly, July 1884, pages 337-339.
Rudolf J. Loman - James Mason
1. e4 d6 2. d4 Nf6 3. Nc3 e6 4.
As good a course as any is to
develop by Nf3, and then Bd3 or Be2, according to taste.
4. ... Be7 5. e5
The kind of move that pleases
odds givers, as it determines all central uncertainty.
5. ... Nfd7 6. Bxe7 Qxe7 7. exd6
Having gone in for a game of
this kind, he should play 7 f4. Black could not immediately reply with
7. . c5 on account of 8. Ne4 or 8. Nb5, either of which would give
White a clear advantage.
7. ... cxd6 8. Qh5+ g6 9. Qh6
Nf6 10. Bd3 Rf8 11. Nf3 Na6 12. 0-0-0 Bd7 13. Rhe1 Nc7
As lit by this move, Black's
position is seen to be consolidated and comfortable. White could have
taken off this knight, but Black would have been consoled by the absence
of the king's bishop.
14. h3 0-0-0 15. Nd2 Kb8 16.
Nb3 Rc8 17. Qd2 Bc6 18. Be4
Not very meritorious. He should
rather have moved his king's bishop's pawn a step.
18. ... Bxe4 19. Nxe4 Nxe4 20.
Rxe4 Rf5 21. Rde1 Rb5 22. Kb1 Qd7 23. c4 Rb6 24. c5 Rc6 25. cxd6
Na5 yields various
complications, and could White fathom them it would be his best course,
not that any gain could be forced, but the final position would be
simpler and less dangerous for White, and he would have still his pawn
25. ... Qxd6 26. Qe2 Qd5 27. g3
Pawn to f3 is better.
27. ... b6 28. Re5 Qd7 29. a4
Doubtless intending an attack,
but as his position does not allow of any, this move yields an extra
chance to the enemy. At the same time it must be admitted that his game
is at once bare of satisfactory possibilities and full of evil ones.
Pawn to f4 is about his best line.
29. ... a5 30. Qd3 Qd6 31. Qe4
Rc4 32. Rc1 Qb4 33. Rxc4 Qxc4 34. Nd2 Qxa4
The movement of his queen have
been signals of distress and proofs of bewilderment. The game is and has
been for some time too difficult for the odds. 35. Qf4 seems to promise
some relief, but if met by Qd1+ 36. Ka2 Ka7, it comes to nothing. There
remains a choice between 35. Qc2, 35. Qe1, and 35. Qe2. Apart from the
abandonment of another pawn little or no comfort is obtainable from any
of these moves.
35. ... Qd1+ 36. Ka2 Nd5
This knight, having stayed on
c7 for twenty-three moves, now comes forward and wins. These moves, viz.:
13. Nc7 and 36. Nd5, one of them strong for defense and the other for
attack, are two special characteristics or "mental dents" of the
He has a lost game, however
playing, so that the speedy end thus brought about may be allowed to
serve as a resignation. Black mates in two moves.
Land and Water, July 12, 1884 (notes by William N. Potter); The
Chess Monthly, July 1884, pages 333-334.
Henry A. Reeves - Wordsworth Donisthorpe
1. e4 e5 2. Bc4 Bc5 3. Nc3 c6 4. d3 Nf6 5. Nf3 d6 6. 0-0 b5
As a rule this premature advance of the pawns may be considered inferior,
for the attack as well as for the defense.
7. Bb3 Bg4
Pinning the knight is useless, as White would willingly submit to it, so
as to get an open knight's file. 7. ... Be6 might be played.
8. Be3 Nbd7 9. Kh1 a5 10. a4 b4 11. Ne2 0-0 12. c3 Be6 13. Bc2 Bxe3 14.
fxe3 Ng4 15. Qd2 b3
This should prove a very weak pawn in the ending.
16. Bd1 f5 17. exf5 Rxf5 18. Ng3 Rf7 19. h3
19. Ne4 looks more promising, although there is no harm in the text move.
19. ... Nh6 20. Ne4 Nf5 21. Qe1 h6 22. g4 Nh4
This seems an oversight. 23. Be2 or Nxd6 is safe enough, and White's game
might be taken for choice.
23. ... Qxh4 24. Nxh4 Rxf1+ 25. Kg2 Raf8
25. ... Rff8 appears to be better, because this rook is in an unsafe
position where it stands.
White had here chance to regain the exchange with 26. Nf3, but even the
text move was good enough if it had been properly followed up.
26. ... Bxf5 27. gxf5 R1xf5 28. Bxb3+
28. Bg4 seems to give White the advantage. Black must abandon the
... d5 29. Rb1 Kh8 30. Ng3 Rf2+ 31. Kg1 Nc5 32. Nh1 Rd2 33. Bd1 Nxd3 34.
b4 axb4 35. cxb4 Rb2 36. Rxb2
Nxb2 37. Bc2 Rb8 38. a5 Rxb4 39. a6 Rb6 40. Kf2 Rxa6 41. Ke2 Ra1 42. Nf2
e4 43. Bb3 Nd3 44. Nxd3 exd3+ 45. Kxd3 Ra3 46. Kc3 g5 47. Kb4 Rxb3+
The Chess Monthly, July 1884, pages 331-332 (notes
by Leopold Hoffer*).
Herbert W. Trenchard - Henry A. Reeves
1. e4 e6 2. d4 c5 3. dxc5 Qa5+
The immediate recapture of the pawn is not necessary. 3. ... Nf6 or Nc6
may be played.
White is so eager to exchange queens that he rather loses two moves to
effect that object. The consequence is that two moves later, having had
the first move, he has no piece in play, whereas his opponent has a
well-developed game and the attack.
4. ... Qxc5 5. Qc3 Nf6 6. Qxc5 Bxc5 7. f3 Nc6 8. Bd3 0-0 9. Nc3 d5 10.
exd5 exd5 11. Bg5 Bb4 12. Bd2
The previous move was useless, he might have played the text move at
12. ... Re8+ 13. Nge2? Bc5 14. 0-0-0 Be6 15. Nf4 Bf7 16. Nce2 a6 17.
h4 b5 18. g4 Ne5! 19. Rhf1 b4 20. Ng3 Nfd7 21. Bf5 Nb6 22. Nd3 Nxd3+ 23.
Bxd3 Nc4 24. Bxc4
Kb1 would have been better; because it left Black the isolated queen's
24. ... dxc4
25. Ne4 Bf8! 26. h5 a5 27. c3 Bd5
Black had no intention to take the knight, but only to gain a move in
bringing his bishop into play as in the text. He gains time in
compelling White to retreat his knight, for if the latter defended it
with 29. Rde1, Black would exchange, leaving his opponent with a weak
28. Ng3 Bc6 29. Bf4? bxc3 30. bxc3 Ba3+ 31. Kb1
Forced. The king cannot move to d2 on account of 31. ... Rad8+ 32. Kc2
31. ... Ra7 32. Rd4
32. Bc1 seems to be the saving move
32. ... Rb7+ 33. Kc2 Rb2+ 34. Kc1 Rf2+ 35. Kb1 Ba4 36. Bd2 Rb8+ 37. Ka1
and after a few more moves White resigns. Dr. Reeves has admirably
conducted the whole game, and displayed great judgment in putting to
proper account his opponent's palpable eagerness to force exchanges.
The Chess Monthly, July 1884, pages 332-333 (notes
by Leopold Hoffer*).
A. Hirsch - Isidor Gunsberg
1. e4 Nc6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 Bf5 4. Nf3 e6 5. Bd3 Nge7
Better than 5. ... Bxd3, recommended, we believe, by older authorities.
6. Bg5 Bg4 7. c3 Qd7 8. h3 Bh5
Although this bishop is required to guard the weak queen's pawn, yet in
trying to keep it, Black loses too much time. It is, therefore,
questionable if it were not better to play here 8. ... Bxf3 9. Qxf3 0-0-0,
etc. If White should move 10. Qf7, then 10. ... Re8, followed by 11. ...
9. g4 Bf7 10. Nbd2 h6 11. Be3 a6 12. Qc2 Nc8 13. Nh4
Nb6 14. Ng6 Rg8 15. f4 0-0-0 16. 0-0-0 Bxg6 17. Bxg6 Kb8 18. f5 Na5 19. Rde1 Nac4 20. Nxc4 Nxc4 21. Rhf1 Qb5
Threatening to win a piece with Nxe3, etc.
22. Qb3 exf5 23. Qxb5 axb5 24. Rxf5 Be7 25. Rf7
25. Bd2 followed by 26. Ref1 would have been better, although White could
have saved the loss of the exchange with 26. Bd2. It so happens that,
even after this loss, White has still a won game; but it might have been
... Bh4 26. Re2
... Nxe3 27. Rxe3 Bg5 28. Kd2
Rgf8 29. Ke2 Bxe3
"Another such victory and we are lost." Black might have been
content to play for a draw with bishops of different color.
30. Kxe3 Rxf7 31. Bxf7 Rd7 32. e6 Re7
Compelled, else the pawn could not be stopped.
Kf4 c6 34. Kf5 Kc7 35. Kg6 b6 36. Kxg7
c5 37. Kf6 Kd6 38. h4
White has plenty of time for the text move. 38. a3 would have secured the
queen's side against Black's threatened counter attack.
38. ... b4 39. g5 hxg5 40. hxg5 bxc3 41. bxc3 Ra7 42. g6
White ought to have played now 42. a4, followed by 43. e7 if Black moves
42. ... Rxa4.
42. ... Rxa2 43. Kg7
Mr. Hirsch made this hasty move under the misapprehension, thinking that
in advancing the pawn to g7 he would lose it, thereby throwing away a
well-deserved victory. The plausible continuation after 43. g7 , instead
of the text move, would have been 43. ... Rf2+ 44. Kg6 Rg2+ 45. Kh6 Rh2+
46. Bh5 Rg2 47. Bg6 Rh2+ 48. Kg5 Rg2+ 49. Kf6 Rf2+ 50. Bf5 Rg2 51. Kf7,
43. ... cxd4 44. cxd4
A last attempt might have been made here with 44. Kf8, and if 44. ...
Ra8+, 45. Be8 followed by queening the knight's pawn; but it is doubtful
whether White would have escaped with a draw.
44. ... Ke7 45. Kg8 Rh2 46. g7 Rh6
Resigns. White might have continued the struggle yet, although he would
have ultimately lost the game. But the ending is not easy by any means
and the chances of drawing numerous. Black could win with 47. Bh5 b5 48.
Be2 b4 49. Bd3 b3 50. Bh7 b2 51. Kh8 Rxh7+ 52. Kxh7 b1Q+, and wins.
The Field, June 14, 1884 (notes by
Gunsberg claimed in Knowledge
(June 13, 1884) that the game was a draw after White's
41st move. He offered the following position, which did not occur in the
game published in The Field.
However, after 1. g5 the position is identical to that after White's 41st
move in The Field.
White can only draw by playing
1. g5 Ra7 2. g6 Rxa2 3. g7
This is a good position, and yields some
interesting play, notably if White on his third move plays Kg7. In every
case, however, a draw will result, with best play.
. Rf2+ 4. Kg6 Rg2+ 5. Kh6 Rh2+ 6. Bh5
Rg2 7. Bg6
If, instead of 7. Bg6, White plays 7. Kh7 Kxe6 8. g8Q+ Rxg8 9. Kxg8 cxd4
10. cxd4 Kf5 11. Bf3 Kf4 12. Bxd5 Ke3, and draws.
7. ... Th2+ 8. Kg5 Tg2+ 9. Kf5 Tf2+ 10. Kg4 Tg2+
Drawn by perpetual check.
Antony A.G. Guest - Isidor Gunsberg
1. e4 d6 2. d4 Nf6 3. Bd3
Better than 3. Bc4, because Black could safely capture the pawn, e.g.:
3. Bc4 Nxe4 4. Qh5+ g6 5. Qd5 Nf6 6. Qf7+ Kd7 7. Be6+ Kc6 8. d5+ Kb6 9.
Be3+ c5 or Ka6, with a comparatively good game. It is needless to point
out the many other variations; Black has a valid defense to all of them.
3. ... Nc6 4. c3 e5 5. Be3 Be7 6. h3 0-0 7. Nf3 Kh8 8. Nbd2 a5 9. Nf1
exd4 10. cxd4 d5 11. e5 Ne4 12. a3 Bf5 13. Ng3 Nxg3 14. fxg3 Bxd3 15.
Qxd3 a4 16. h4
Intending 17. Ng5, which would lead to a powerful attack and enable White
even to sacrifice a piece, e.g.:
17. Ng5 g6 18. Nxh7 Kxh7 h5, etc.
16. ... Qd7! 17. 0-0 h6 18. Rae1 Qe6
Of course it would be preferable if Black could occupy that square with
the knight; but in the present instance it would not be advisable owing
to the threatened advance of White's pawn to g4.
19. Kh2 Ra6
Momentarily this move produces some pressure on the queen's side; but the
advantage, if any, is neutralized later on, when Black has to lose
several moves to bring the rook back whence it started.
20. Bc1 Rb6 21. Nd2 Qg4
Premature. This move might have been reserved, as the queen cannot
maintain itself in that position.
22. Rxf8+ Bxf8 23. Rf1 Be7 24. Rf4 Qe6 25. b4? axb3 26. Nxb3 g5 27. hxg5
hxg5 28. Rf1 Ra6
Although it would seem advisable to leave the rook in this position, so
as to keep the pressure on the knight, it appears, nevertheless, that
the retrograde movements are necessary, in order to parry White's
threatened attack on the king's side.
Bringing the rook from a good into a bad position for the sake of a very
transparent threat. What the French call: "une attaque à l'eau de
29. ... Kg7 30. Qf3 Ra8 31. Kg1 Rf8! 32. Qh5 Qg6 33. g4? Nxe5
Very clever; gaining White's pawn and turning the game in favor of Black.
If 34. Qxg6+, then 34. ... Nxg6. If 34. dxe5, then 34. ... Qb6+ 35. Kh2
34. Rh3 Nc4 35. Nc5 Qxh5 36. gxh5 Bxc5 37. dxc5 Kh6 38. Rb3 b6 39. cxb6
Nxb6 40. Be3 Nc4 41. Bc5 Rf1+ 42. Kh2
In actual play it would be difficult, especially under time limit, to
exhaust the many variations arising from 42. Kxf1. The player in such
cases must rely more on his judgment of position than calculation. In
the present instance it would be doubtful whether White could take the
rook with safety. A careful analysis yields the advantage to Black.
42. ... Kxh5 43. Rb7 Rf7 44. a4 Kg6 45. Bb4 c6 46. Rxf7 Kxf7 47. a5 c5
48. Bxc5 Nxa5 49. Kg3 Nb3
After the text move the game is drawn by force. 49. ... Nc4 would have
left many possibilities of victory. Anyhow it would have prevented White
from sacrificing his bishop for the two pawns, e.g.:
49. ... Nc4 50. Kg4 Kg6 51. Bd4 Nd2 52. Be3 Ne4 53. Bd4 Nf6+ 54. K moves
50. Be3 Kg6 51. Kg4 d4 52. Bxg5 d3 53. Be3
The Chess Monthly, July 1884, pages 329-330 (notes
by Leopold Hoffer*).
George A. Hooke - James Mason
1. e4 Nc6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 Bf5 4.
Be3 e6 5. Bd3 Bxd3
We prefer 5. ... Nge7.
6. Qxd3 Nge7 7. Nf3 Nf5 8. Nc3
Be7 9. a3 a6 10. Ne2 Qd7 11. Nf4 0-0 12. 0-0 Nd8 13. b4 Nf7 14. c4 c6
15. c5 Nh8 16. Rad1 Rf7 17. Bc1 Raf8 18. Nh3 h6 19. Ne1 g5
Up to this point both players
have confined themselves to strategical movements only. Black is waiting
for White to commence the attack, for which he is prepared, but having
exhausted all his coups de repos, he must seize the initiative
20. g3 Rg7 21. Ng2 Ng6 22. Ne3 Bd8 23. Nxf5 Rxf5
It cannot be denied that
considerable danger would arise from 23. ... exf5, owing to White
obtaining a passed pawn. On the other hand, perceiving White's
extremely cautious proceedings, it is questionable whether 23. ... exf5
should not have been played. The knight could be posted at e6,
compelling White to guard his queen's pawn, and Black could advance
then either with pawn to f4 or with the king's rook's pawn
24. Kh1 Qf7 25. f3 Qf8
Compelled, so as to have a
retreat for the rook after g4.
26. g4 Rff7 27. Rf2 Qe8
Equally a defensive measure,
protecting the knight indirectly.
28. Rdf1 Nf4
Compulsory; Black cannot permit
the advance of the bishop's pawn.
29. Bxf4 gxf4 30. Rg2 Bg5 31.
Ng1 Rf8 32. h3 Kh8 33. Rh2 Bh4 34. Ne2 Qe7 35. Rg1 Qg5 36. Rhg2 Rgf7 37.
Kh2 Kg7 38. Rf1 Qg6
At this stage the time for
adjournment being near, Mr. Mason thought it advisable to offer the
exchange of queens. White's queen is more powerful, and could become
dangerous in supporting an advance of the pawns on the queen's side.
White ought not to have
exchanged queens for the above stated reason.
39. ... Kxg6
40. Kh1 Kg5 41. Kh2 Kg6 42. Rgg1 Bg3+ 43. Kg2
If White were to take the
bishop, Black would obtain an advantage with 43. ... fxg3+ 44. Kxg3 or
Rxg3 Rf4, etc.
43. ... Bh4 44. Rd1 Kg5 45. Rd3
Rh8 46. Rb3 Rhf8 47. a4 Ra8 48. Rgb1 Rff8 49. b5 axb5 50. axb5 Ra2 51.
R3b2 Rfa8 52. bxc6 bxc6 53. Nc3 Rxb2+ 54. Rxb2 h5
Black is obliged to open a
square for his king, because White could threaten mate with Rb7.
55. Ne2 Ra4 56. gxh5 Bg3 57.
Rd2 Be1 58. Rd1 Bg3 59. h4+
If 59. Nxg3, Black would reply
59. ... Ra7+ 60. K moves fxg3, with a better game.
59. ... Bxh4
Obviously, if 59. ... Kxh4,
then 60. Rh1+, etc.
60. Kh3 Bf2 61. h6 Kxh6 62. Kg4
Be3 63. Nxf4 Rxd4 64. Rxd4 Bxd4 65. Nxe6 Bxe5 66. Kf5 Bb2 67. Nf4 Bc1
68. Nd3 Be3 69. Ke6 Kg5 70. Ke5
Here appears to be the turning
point of the game. White should have played 70. Kd6, and probably he
would have scored a victory. The knight prevents the adverse king from
approaching the king's bishop's pawn, whilst the queen's bishop's
pawn becomes passed. This is the only instance where Mr. Hooke relaxed
in that vigilance which he so ably maintained all through this difficult
70. ... Bg1 71. f4+ Kg6 72. Kd6
Now 72. Ke6 again would be
ineffective, owing to Black's reply 72. ... Bd4, etc.
72. ... Kf5 73. Kxc6 Ke4 74.
Kd6 Kxd3 75. f5 Kc4 76. c6 Bh2+ 77. Kd7 d4 78. f6 d3,
and the game was abandoned as
The Field, June 21, 1884 (notes
by Leopold Hoffer*).
John O.S. Thursby - Antony A.G. Guest
1. e4 e6 2. d4 c5 3. Nf3 d5 4. e5 Nc6 5. c3 Bd7 6. Bd3 Qb6 7. Bc2 g6 8.
Castling would have been better.
8. ... cxd4 9. cxd4 Bb4+ 10. Kf1 Qc7
In order to give more freedom to king's bishop.
11. Be3 Nge7 12. a3 Ba5 13. b4 Bb6 14. Qd2 0-0 15. h4 Nf5 16. Bxf5
Pawn to h5 would have given him a very strong attack.
16. ... Rxf5 17. Nc3 a6 18. Ne2
Not so good as Rc1.
... Raf8 19. Ng3 R5f7 20. h5 g5 21. Nxg5
He ought to have taken with bishop, thus: 21. Bxg5 Bxd4 22. Bf6 Rxf6 23.
exf6 Bxa1 24. Qg5+ Kf7 25. Qg7+ Ke8 26. f7+ Rxf7 27. Qxa1.
21. ... Rxf2+
Involving a deep, sound, and ingenious combination.
Ruinous; sacrificing queen for two rooks was best.
22. ... Bxd4 23. Nf3
"One woe doth tread upon another's heel. So fast they follow."
His treatment of his rooks is unaccountable. He imprisons the king's
rook, and ignores the existence of the queen's rook. The latter at c1
would have done some service to the state.
23. ... Bxa1 24. Qg5+ Kh8
This move ought to have entailed loss upon Black.
Qh6 would have made Black miserable.
25. ... Qxe5 26. Ng6+ hxg6 27. hxg6+ Kg8 28. Qh4 Qg7 29. Rh3 Bd4 30. Nh5
Rxf2+ 31. Qxf2 Bxf2 32. Nxg7 Bb6 33. Rh7 Ne5 34. Nh5 Bb5+ 35. Ke1 Nd7
Winning knight and bishop for rook would have done him no good.
36. ... Bd4
Very well played: had he advanced the king's pawn, White would have
checked with rook, and if Kf8, then Rh7, forcing a draw.
37. Rxe6 Nf8 38. Rd6 Bc6 39. Rd8 Bg7 40. Nf4 d4 41. Ne6 Bxg2 42. Nxg7
Kxg7 43. Rxd4 Bc6 44. Kd2 Nxg6 45. Kc3 Kf7 46. Kc4 Ke6 47. Kc5 Ne5 48.
Kb6 would have drawn easily.
48. ... Nd7+ 49. Kc4 Ba4 50. Rd2 Ne5+ 51. Kc5
A problem composer so skilful ought not to have fallen into a trap so
51. ... b6+ 52. Kxb6 Nc4+ 53. Kxa6 Nxd2 54. b5 Kd7 55. b6 Kc8 56. Ka7 Bc6
57. a4 Nc4 58. Ka6 Kb8 59. a5 Nd6
The Illustrated Sporting and
July 5, 1884 (notes by George A. MacDonnell).
Antony A.G. Guest - Keough
1. e4 e5 2. d4 exd4 3. c3 dxc3 4. Bc4 Qf6 5. Nxc3 Bb4 6. Bd2 Ne7 7. 0-0
c6 8. Kh1 0-0 9. f4 d5 10. exd5 Bd7 11. Qb3 c5 12. Rae1 Bf5 13. a3 Ba5
14. g4 Bxg4 15. Ne4 Qb6 16. Bxa5 Qxb3
If 16. ... Qxa5, White wins a piece by 17. Nf2.
17. Bxb3 Nf5 18. Bc3 Nd7 19. Nd2 b5 20. Rg1 Bh5 21. Bc2
21. ... Bg6 would have lost the game
speedily, because of White's reply
22. Bxf5, followed by 23. Rxg7+.
22. b4 f6
If he had played 22. ... Nxc2, then
follows: 23. Rxg7+ Kh8 24. Reg1 Nd4
25. bxc5, and wins.
23. Bxd4 cxd4 24. Bf5 Rad8 25. Re7 Rf7 26. Be6 Kf8 27. Bxf7 Kxe7 28. Bxh5,
The Illustrated London News, July 19, 1884 (notes by
Antony A.G. Guest).
Rudolf J. Loman - Henry A. Reeves
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. b4 Bb6 5. a4 a6 6. c3 Nf6 7. d3 d6 8.
Up to this point the opening moves are identical with those of a game
recently played between Zukertort v. Martinez. The former moved here 8.
a5 Ba7 9. Nbd2, eventually posting the knight at g3. White's object in
pinning the knight is to prevent the advance of Black's queen's pawn;
but 8. Qb3 seems preferable.
8. ... 0-0 9. Nbd2 Be6 10. 0-0 h6 11. Bh4
Perhaps 11. Be3 would have been the right square for the bishop. The
adverse bishop occupies a threatening diagonal, and Black obtained a
strong counter attack later in advancing his pawns on the king's side.
11. ... Kh8
Preparatory to the advance alluded to above.
12. Bxe6 fxe6 13. Nc4 Ba7 14. Re1 Rg8 15. h3 Qe7 16. Nfd2
Here might be suggested 16. b5, and if 16. ... axb5, then 17. axb5 Nd8
18. b6, etc. If 16. ... N moves, then 17. Ne3, etc.
16. ... g5 17. Bg3 h5
Perhaps 18. Ne3 should have been played here. There was time enough for
the text move.
18. ... h4 19. Bh2 g4 20. hxg4 Nxg4 21. Nce3 Nxf2
The sacrifice, although Black succeeded in winning, does not appear to be
sound. Black had a very good attack; but he precipitated matters.
22. Qh5+, followed by 23. Kxf2, according to Black's reply, ought to have
22. ... Qg5,
and Black won the game in a few moves. The score ends here, and we only
know that Black won in a few moves. But it seems doubtful whether he
ought to win by correct play. We should rather thake White's game for
The Field, August 2, 1884 (notes
by Leopold Hoffer*).
According to the scores published in The Field and The Chess Monthly this game was drawn.
A. Hirch - Joseph H. Blackburne
1. e4 d6 2. d4 Nf6 3. Bd3
See note (a) in the game published on June 28 [first note in the game
Loman - MacDonnell].
3. ... Nc6 4. c3 e5 5. d5 Ne7 6. Ne2 Ng6 7. Bg5 Be7 8. h4 h6 9. Bxf6 Bxf6
10. g3 0-0 11. Na3 Qe8 12. Qd2
12. Nb5 would have been quite useless on account of 12. ... Bd8, followed
by 13. ... c6, and 14. ... Bb6, when the bishop would have been brought
in an attacking position without loss of time.
12. ... Be7 13. Rh2 Bd7 14. 0-0-0 b5 15. f4 a5 16. f5 Nh8 17. g4 Nf7
Perhaps 18. Rg1, for the purpose of supporting the advance of the king's
knight's pawn, would have been more forcible.
18. ... Qb8 19. Ng1
White has to execute now this manoeuver with the knight, in order to
support the advance above alluded to. His attack would
have been formidable had he posted his rooks on the knight's
file; but Mr. Hirsch had a different plan of attack.
19. ... b4 20. Nb1 Rc8 21. Nf3 c5 22. c4 a4 23. g5 Bf8 24. g6 Nd8
A very brilliant conception, and we believe perfectly sound. The
complications arising from the capture of the queen are very difficult
and interesting, but it is one of those positions which can hardly be
worked out with a time limit in actual play. A quiet analysis of hours,
perhaps, would not exhaust its numerous and difficult variations. Mr.
Hirsch might, therefore, have done better to adopt the less violent
continuation of 25. Ng5. Obviously Black could not capture the knight,
because White could then announce mate in five moves, viz.: 25. ... hxg5
26. hxg5 Nf7 27. Rh8+ Nxh8 28. Rxh8+ Kxh8 29. Qh2+, and mates next move.
25. ... hxg5 26. hxg5 Nf7 27. f6 Bg4 28. Be2
A fine move, threatening 29. Nxe5, etc., winning right
28. ... gxf6 29. gxf6 Bxf3 30. Bxf3 Bg7 31. fxg7
It seems as if White had an opportunity here to emerge advantageously
from the complication by playing gxf7+ instead of the text move, e.g.:
31. gxf7+ Kxf7 32. fxg7 Kxg7 33. Rg1+ Kf6 (best) 34. Rh6+ Ke7 (best) 35.
Rh7+ Kf8 36. Bg4 Rc7 37. Rh8+, winning the queen, and White should win
then with two minor pieces for a rook. It would be worth the trouble of
the reader to exhaust the position by a thorough analysis. Such
remarkable endings rarely occur.
31. ... Ng5 32. Bg4 Kxg7 33. Bf5 Rh8 34. Rxh8 Qxh8
This breaks the attack, and puts a speedy termination to the struggle.
Black remains with the exchange ahead, and the rest is only a matter of
time. We might add that Black could have established a successful
counter attack had he played 21. c6 instead of c5, for obvious reasons.
35. Rxh8 Rxh8 36. Nd2 Rh1+ 37. Kc2 Ra1 38. a3 bxa3 39. bxa3 Ra2+ 40. Kc3
Rxa3+ 41. Kb2 Re3 42. Nb1 Nxe4
Source: The Field, July 26, 1884 (notes by Leopold Hoffer*).
Knowledge (July 4, 1884) offered the ending of this game (after Black's 24th move).
Antony A.G. Guest - A. Hirsch
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 Bc5 5. c3 Qf6 6.
Be3 Nge7 7. Be2 d6 8. 0-0 Bd7 9. b4 Bb6 10. Nb5 Rc8 11. Bxb6 axb6 12.
f4 0-0 13. e5 Qg6 14. exd6 Bh3 15. Bf3 Nf5 16. Qd3 Rce8
17. Be4 Bxg2 18. Bxf5 Bxf1+ 19. Bxg6 Bxd3 20. Bxd3 cxd6
21. Nd2 Re6 22. Bc4 d5 23. Nf1 Re4 24. Bxd5 Rxf4 25. a3 Rd8 26. Re1 g6
27. c4 Rd7 28. Re8+ Kg7 29. Ne3 Ne7 30. Kg2 h5 31. Nc3 g5 32. Ne2 Rh4
33. Ng3 Kf6 34. Rh8 Ng6 35. Re8 Nf4+ 36. Kg1 Ne6 37. Ne4+ Rxe4 38. Bxe4
Ke5 39. Bd5 g4 40. Kf2 Kd4 41. Bxe6 fxe6 42. Rxe6 Rf7+ 43. Ke2 Rf3 44.
Rd6+ Ke4 45. Nf1 Rxa3 46. Rxb6 h4 47. Rxb7 Ra2+ 48. Nd2+ Kd4 49. Rd7+
Kc3 50. b5 g3 51. Rd3+ Kb4 52. hxg3 h3 53. g4 h2 54. Rh3,
and White wins.
The Morning Post, July 7, 1884.
Isidor Gunsberg - Joseph H. Blackburne
First adopted in an important modern contest by Baron d'André in the
Paris tournament, 1867.
1. ... e6 2. d4
d5 3. e3 Nf6 4. Be2 Bd6 5. b3 0-0 6. 0-0 Nbd7 7. c4 c6 8. Ba3
This appears to be a judicious exchange, inasmuch as Black's bishop is in
very good play as compared with his own.
8. ... Bxa3 9. Nxa3 Qe7 10. Nc2 h6
A waiting move, no doubt. It seems, however, that Black might have
developed his queen's bishop after 10. ... b6 instead.
11. Nce1 e5 12. dxe5 Nxe5 13. Nxe5 Qxe5 14. Nf3 Qe7 15. Qd4 Re8 16. cxd5 Nxd5 17. Bd3 Qf6
of the ultimate result.
18. Qxf6 Nxf6 19. Rac1 Be6 20. Nd4 Rad8 21. Rfd1 Bc8 22. b4 a6 23. a3 Rd6
24. Bc2 Red8
25. Bb3 Kf8 26. f3 Ne8 27. Kf2 Nc7 28. a4 Be6 29. Nxe6+ Nxe6 30. Rxd6
Rxd6 31. Bxe6 Rxe6 32. Rd1 Ke7 33. e4 Rd6 34. Rxd6 Kxd6 35. Ke3 c5
The sound and correct play on both sides, coupled with judicious
exchanges now and then, brings it to an interesting pawn ending, when
the puzzling question arises whether the four pawns against the three on
the one side or the three against the two on the other are preferable.
The actual play beginning with the text move resulted in a draw; the
only other alternative would be to try 35. ... a5, which, however, would
have scarcely so favorable a result, e.g.:
35. ... a5 36. bxa5 (forced) 36. ... Kc5 37. f4 Kb4 (37. ... f6 38. g4
g5 39. f5 Kd6 40. Kd4 c5+ 41. Kc4 Kc6 (If
41. ... Ke5 42. Kxc5,
followed by 43. Kb6, and must win)
42. h3 Kd6 43. Kb5, and wins) 38. a6 bxa6 39. e5 Kc5 (Forced, because if 39.
... c5, White would play 40.
f5, winning) 40.
Ke4 a5 41. f5 h5 42. g3 f6 43. e6, and wins. The variations being so
numerous, we give only the most plausible, leaving to the reader to
examine the remainder for himself.
36. b5 axb5 37. axb5 b6 38. f4 g5 39. g3 Ke6 40. h4 gxh4 41. gxh4 h5 42.
Kd3 Kd6 43. Kc4 Ke6
The Chess Monthly, September
1884, pages 13-14 (notes by Leopold Hoffer*).
W.H.A. Mundell - Joseph H. Blackburne
1. e4 d6 2. Bc4
An interesting though unusual line.
2. ... Nf6 3. Nc3 e6 4. d3
This continuation imparts such an appearance as might be presented by
some opening upon even terms. We do not condemn, and, indeed, we have
often thought that strong receivers of these odds might as well adopt
such a course.
4. ... Nc6 5. Bg5 Be7 6. Bb3 0-0 7. f4
A perfectly justifiable advance
were the queen's bishop at home, but hardly so under the actual
circumstances, as his king's third will be a weak spot.
7. ... Kh8 8. Nh3 d5
Pawn to e5 has claims, but the text move is good enough to say no more.
Undoubtedly best. Pawn takes pawn would result in grave disadvantage.
9. ... Ng8 10. Bxe7
We rather prefer 10. 0-0 Bxg5 11. Nxg5. If now 11. ... Nxe5, 12. Nxe6
or Nxh7. A question like this is, however, a mere matter of style and
10. ... Qxe7 11. 0-0 Nh6 12. d4
This loses either a pawn or the exchange. 12. Qd2, though not
satisfactory, is about the best course.
12. ... Nf5 13. Ne2
Correctly judged. The pawn is here worth more than the exchange.
13. ... Ne3 14. Qd3 Nxf1 15. Rxf1 g6 16. c3 a5 17. Rf3
A menacing position, and Black will have to be careful.
17. ... Nd8
Qg7, followed by Ne7, has claims.
18. Bc2 Nf7
We consider that b5, or c5, would be a stronger course. It must be
allowed, however, that the line of play thus inaugurated looks highly
19. Ng3 b6 20. Bb1 Ba6 21. Qc2 c5 22. Nh5
Prettily played, and his best resource, as he has not time to take the
22. ... cxd4
Much can be said for 22. ... Nh6 23. Nf6 Rxf6 24. exf6 Qxf6, with even
forces, which means that he has won the pawn originally given. It is not
to be denied, however, that his position looks enfeebled.
23. Nf6 d3 24. Qd2 Nh6
We like neither this move nor its ingenious continuation. The true
defense appears to be 24.
... Kg7 25. Rg3 Nh6 26. Nh5+ Kh8. There are variations and
sub-variations, but they do not impeach 24. Kg7. This move has the
additional merit that it allows in various cases of the exchange being
given up with even forces and a fair position, should Black feel
25. Ng5 Ra7 26. Rh3 Rxf6
He may play Qc5+, but it comes to the same thing, as rook takes knight
must follow. Other lines attract, but on examination turn out to be
frauds. It must be acknowledged that in this part of the game Mr.
Mundell has outplayed his eminent opponent.
27. exf6 Qc5+ 28. Kh1 Ng4
The fly which spoils Black's ointment.
29. ... Rxf7
If Nf2+, then of course Qxf2. He has no resource but to capture that pawn.
30. Nxf7+ Kg7 31. Rf3
By a curious revolution he is now the exchange ahead instead of the
exchange behind, but Black has the more compact position.
31. ... Kxf7 32. h3 Nf6 33. Bxd3 Bb7 34. Qe3 d4
Qc6 would be our choice most decidedly. If 35. a4 Ne4 36. Bb5 Qc7 or Qd6,
with a very firm position.
35. cxd4 Qh5 36. Rf1 Qh4 37. Bc4 Ne4 38. Kh2 Qf6 39. d5
A daring stroke, and one marked by much insight, but, for all that, not
quite sound, as its result should have been a deterioration of advantage.
39. ... exd5
By 39. ... Bxd5 40. Qxb6 Nd2 Black's chance of a draw would have been
much improved. White has nothing better than 41. Bxd5 Nxf1+ 42. Kg1, and
though theoretically he should win, yet the process will be long and
difficult. Of 39. ... Bxd5 40. exd5 the same remark may be made.
40. Qxe4 Qc6 41. Rd1
With a clear winning game, and, as will be perceived, it is duly carried
41. ... dxc4 42. Qxc6 Bxc6 43. Rd6 Be4 44. Rxb6 Bd3 45. g4 a4 46. a3 Bc2
47. Kg3 h5 48. gxh5 gxh5 49. Kh4 Bd1 50. Kg5 Ke7 51. f5 Kd7 52. f6 Bb3
Black resigns. By this game Mr. Blackburne lost his chance of either
first or second prize. He said to us about it, "I ought to have
won, but Mundell played very well."
Source: Land and Water, July 26, 1884 (notes by
William N. Potter).
W.H.A. Mundell - Isidor Gunsberg
1. e4 d6 2. Bc4
This can hardly be considered as good as 2. d4.
2. ... Nf6 3. Nc3 e5 4. d3 Nc6 5. Bb3 Nd4 6. Nce2
To disengage his queen's side, and make both knights available for attack on the king's side.
6. ... Nxb3 7. axb3 Be7 8. f4 exf4 9. Nxf4 0-0 10. Nf3 c6 11. 0-0 h6 12. Be3
This move gives Black time to develop his pieces.
12. ... Ng4 13. Bd2 Bf6 14. d4 Qb6 15. c3 Re8 16. Re1 Bd7 17. Nh5
If h3, then Ne5. Black has brought his pieces well into play.
17. ... Be7 18. h3 Nf6 19. Nxf6+ Bxf6 20. Kh1 Qb5 21. b4 Qh5
A very useful flank movement. The queen now occupies a good position.
22. Bf4 Be7
With a view to playing rook to f8, which might give a chance for Bxh3.
23. e5 d5 24. e6
Although tempting, this is weak, as the pawn will sooner or later be captured.
24. ... Bc8 25. Ne5 Qf5
If Black plays Qxd1 Raxd1 Bxe6 Nxc6.
26. Nd3 Bxe6 27. g4 Qf6 28. Re3
To guard against Qh4, also to double his rook on the king's file.
28. ... Bf7
To bring the bishop into good play.
29. Qe2 Bg6 30. Rf1 Be4+ 31. Kh2
Kg1 was the proper move.
31. ... Rf8 32. Rf2
To guard against g5.
32. ... Bxd3
Black now brings about the exchange of four pieces, remaining with a superior end position.
33. Rxd3 Bd6 34. Rdf3 Bxf4+ 35. Rxf4 Qd6 36. Qe5 Qxe5 37. dxe5 Rxf4 38. Rxf4 Re8 39. Rf5 g6 40. Rf6 Kg7 41. Rd6 Kf7
If Rxe5 White could equalize the game by playing Rd7+, followed by Rxb7 and Rc7.
This is playing Black's game. White ought to have played Rf6+, driving the king back again.
42. ... Re7 43. Rxe7+ Kxe7 44. g5
A good move. It would be dangerous to take, as by Kg3 and Kg4 White would gain a decisive advantage.
44. ... h5
Now, of course, the game is virtually over, as White has but the one square on f4 to defend his king's pawn, and when short of a move he will have to move his king.
45. Kg3 Ke6 46. Kf4 b6 47. b3 a6 48. c4 dxc4 49. bxc4
Now comes the most extraordinary part, which should serve as a warning that a game is never won until checkmate is given. By playing pawn to c5 Black wins, as the rook's pawn becomes free to advance whether White replies with bxc5 or b5. Instead of winning the game on the move Black lost it on the move by hastily advancing the wrong pawn without examining the consequences. Besides losing the well-earned victory in a hard fought game, Black loses all chances to paly for first and second prize, although this is the only game lost out of eight games played.
49. ... a5 50. c5
Resigns. The game is not to be saved if Black plays a4 then cxb6 (it would be quite useless to play the king on account of e6) a3 b7 a2 b8Q a1Q Qd6+ Kf7 e6+ Kg8 Qb8+ Kh7 Qc7+ Kg8 Qf7+ Kh8 Qf6+, and wins.
July 18, 1884 (notes by Isidor Gunsberg*).
Antony A.G. Guest - James Mason
1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. a3 Nf6 4. e3 Be7 5. Nc3 0-0
6. Nf3 Bd7 7. Bd3 Be8 8. Qc2 Nbd7 9. Ng5 Bf7 10. Bxh7+ Kh8 11. Bg6 Bg8
12. h4 Ng4 13. Qe2 Nh6 14. e4 dxe4 15. Ngxe4 Nf6 16. Bxh6 gxh6 17. 0-0-0
Kg7 18. Nxf6 Bxf6 19. Qg4 Kh8 20. Qh5 Bg7 21. Ne4 Qe7 22. g4 Bf7
23. g5 Bxg6 24. Qxg6 Qf7 25. h5 Rad8 26. gxh6
Qf4+ 27. Kb1 Bxh6 28. Rh4 Rg8 29. Qxe6 Rde8 30. Qf6+ Qxf6 31. Nxf6 Bg5
32. Nxe8 Bxh4 33. Nxc7 Rc8 34. Nb5 Rxc4 35. Nxa7 Bxf2 36. Nb5 Rc8 37. d5
Rd8 38. d6 Rd7 39. Kc2 Kg7 40. Kb3 Kh6 41. Rd5 Be3 42. Kc4 Bg5 43. Nd4
Bc1 44. Rb5 Bf4 45. Rb6 Kxh5 46. Kd5 Kg4 47. Ke6 Rh7 48. a4
The Morning Post, July 21, 1884.
Antony A.G. Guest - James Mason
Not good, considering the odds
1. ... Nf6 2. d4 d6 3. e3 Bg4
4. Bd3 Nc6 5. c4 e5 6. d5 Nb8 7. Nc3 Nbd7 8. h3 Bxf3 9. Qxf3 Nc5 10. Bc2
Be7 11. b4
This advance only tends to
weaken the queen's pawns. Bd2, so as to be prepared to castle on
either side, seems his best course.
11. ... Ncd7 12. h4
Rash, against so able a
defender as Mr. Mason - able! or rather one of the very ablest.
12. ... 0-0 13. h5 Nb6 14. g4
Mr. Guest skittles away his
pawns as though he had an attack that would compensate him for their
loss - but the attack, where is it? well, not on White's side. The
whole of the game on the part of the first player falls below the high
standard of play exhibited in his other games in this tourney.
14. ... Nfxd5 15. Qe4 Nf6 16. Qd3
A move simple, but of the
highest order. White's pseudo-attack now collapses.
17. cxd5 Bxb4 18. Bd2 Bxc3 19.
Bxc3 e4 20. Qf1 Nfxd5 21. 0-0-0 Qe7 22. Bb3 Qc5 23. Qe1 a5 24. a4 Rad8
It matters not where; the
25. ... Nc4+ 26. Kb1 b5
Black now hammers down his
Thor-like blows with remorseless force.
27. Bd4 Qa3 28. Bxc4 bxc4 29.
Qxa5 Rb8+ 30. Kc2 Rxf2+ 31. Rd2 Qd3+
Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News, August 16, 1884 (notes by
George A. MacDonnell); The Chess Monthly, October 1884, page 42.
The Chess Monthly offered
additional moves before the game was concluded (32. Kc1 Rb1 mate), and
published a different move order:
11. h4 0-0 12. b4 Ncd7 13. h5 and 27. Bxc4 bxc4 28. Bd4 Qa3 29. Qxa5.
Antony A.G. Guest - James Mason
1. e4 d6 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. h3
In the second tie game White
allowed the king's knight to be pinned, and came to grief; he,
therefore, adopted this unnecessary precautionary measure, resolved upon
a quiet development. But the text move is loss of time, and tantamount
to giving up the first move.
3. ... Nf6 4. Nc3 e6 5. d4 Be7
6. Bc4 d5
Black has now a much better
opening than he ought to get if White had chosen a more energetic course.
7. Bd3 Bb4 8. Bg5 h6 9. Bxf6
Forced. 9. Bh4 would obviously
be followed by 9. . g5, etc., and 9. e5 would be equally
unsatisfactory because of 9. ... hxg5 10. Bg6+ Kd7 11. exf6 Qxf6, with a
fine game for Black.
9. ... Qxf6 10. 0-0 Bxc3 11.
bxc3 0-0 12. e5 Qf7 13. Nh4 Ne7 14. Qg4 Bd7 15. Ng6 Nxg6 16. Qxg6
White pursues consistently the plan he resolved upon at the start, viz.:
an unenterprising game. Satisfied with the pawn ahead, he avoids
complications by forcing an early exchange of pieces. Besides, it will
be found that if 16. Bxg6, it would turn to the advantage of Black.
16. ... Qxg6 17. Bxg6 Bb5 18.
This appears to be of doubtful
value, but quite in keeping with White's modest aspirations.
18. ... Bxd3 19. cxd3 Rac8
The only vulnerable point in
White's position, where a breach can be effected, and Mr. Mason spots
it with his usual fine judgment.
Probably 20. Rab1, followed by
21. Rfc1, would have been sounder play. The main object should have been
to prevent Black from remaining with two pawns against one on the queen's
20. ... c5 21. dxc5 Rxc5 22. d4
Rc4 23. Rb1
White now tries to rectify the
omission alluded to above, which Black, however, fully utilizes.
23. ... b6 24. Rb3 Rfc8 25. Ra3
This rook is now in an
unfavorable position, and, in spite of the pawn plus, White's game is
25. ... R8c7 26. Rc1 Kf7
Mr. Mason points out that 26.
... Kh7 would have gained him a move; but at that stage he was not quite
decided whether he would bring the king over to the queen's side.
27. Kf1 Kg6 28. Ke1 Rxd4 29.
cxd4 Rxc1+ 30. Kd2
If White had played 28. Ke2
instead of Ke1 he would not have lost a pawn immediately. As it is,
however, Black takes the rook checking, and has time to defend his own
30. ... Rc7 31. f4 Kf5 32. Ke3
h5 33. g3 g5 34. fxg5 Kxg5 35. Kf3 Kf5 36. g4+ hxg4+ 37. hxg4+ Kg5 38.
Black's game is now
practically won, and the remainder only a matter of time. White's king
is shut out from the defense, and Black forces the game by the simple
process of advancing his pawns.
39. Rd3 Rf4 40. a3 Rxg4+ 41.
Kf3 Rh4 42. Kg3 Rf4,
and after a few more moves,
August 16, 1884; The Morning Post,
August 18, 1884; The Chess Monthly,
September 1884, pages 20-21 (notes by
Morning Post offered only 39 moves.
The cartoon entitled 'A Chess Divan in the Strand' was number six in the series that was published in Punch under the heading 'Interiors and Exteriors.' Other places or events pictured were, to name a few, the reading room in the British Museum, theatrical celebrities meeting for a benefit, the meeting of the Zoological Society at Hanover Square, and a Cabinet Council. The series started at February 14, 1885. The artist was Harry Furniss.
* The diagram was given in the original source.
Notes: 1 The Field, May 15, 1885; The Morning Post, May 19, 1885. 2 The Field, May 22, 1885. 3 The Field, May 15, 1885; The Chess Monthly, June 1884, page 290. 4 The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News, May 10, 1885; The Chess Monthly, June 1884, page 289. 5 The Field, May 15, 1885; The Morning Post, May 19, 1885 6 The Chess Monthly, June 1884, page 290. 7 The Field, May 15, 1884. 8 The Chess Monthly, June 1884, page 289. 9 The Chess Monthly, June 1884, page 289. 10 The Field, June 14, 1884. 11 The Field, May 31, 1884. 12 The Field, June 7, 1884. 13 The Field, June 14, 1884. 14 The Field, June 21, 1884. 15 The Morning Post (June 30, 1884) claimed that Blackburne played against Thursby and Hirsch. 16 The Field, June 28, 1884. 17 The Morning Post, July 7, 1884. The Field of June 7, 1884, reported that the game between MacDonnell and Mason was played in the second week of the competition. Guest's claim in The Morning Post that the game was played in the sixth week of tournament was confirmed by MacDonnell in The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News of July 12, 1884. This is what MacDonnell had to say about his loss to Mason (Mason had White): "His opponent [MacDonnell] adopted a novel form of the Philidor defence, and had, about the twentieth move, obtained a pleasanter, if not more advantageous, position than Mason, but rushing forward carelessly and impetuously he dropped a pawn and then fell into a pit." The game has not been found. 18 The Morning Post, July 14, 1884. 19 Incorrect reports have been found in The British Chess Magazine August/September 1884, page 319, The Times, July 21, 1884, and the Nottinghamshire Guardian, August 22, 1884. 20 The Chess Monthly, September 1884, page 3.
Pictures: Simpson's Divan (Punch, or the London Charivari, April 4, 1885); George A. MacDonnell (Brentano's Chess Monthly, October 1881); James Mason (Neue Illustrirte Zeitung, Number 39, 1882); Joseph H. Blackburne (The Chess Monthly, February 1889); Isidor Gunsberg (Illustrirte Zeitung, July 5, 1890); John O.S. Thursby (The Chess Monthly, March 1893); Rudolf J. Loman (Illustrirte Zeitung, October 1, 1892); Herbert Trenchard (Cassell's Magazine, 1898, page 636); Henry A. Reeves (The Chess Monthly, October 1892); Wordsworth Donisthorpe (The Chess Monthly, December 1890); Antony A.G. Guest (The Chess Bouquet,1897, page 109).
© June 2014 Joost van Winsen. All Rights Reserved