2001: A Space Odyssey

Movie made in 1968 by Stanley Kubrick. It features an astronaut, Dr. Frank Poole (Gary Lockwood), playing a chess game with the HAL-9000 computer. The game in the movie is from an actual game, Roesch vs. Schlage, Hamburg 1910. The initial position in the movie is after Black’s 13th move. The astronaut says, “Umm…anyway, Queen takes pawn. OK?” HAL responds, “Bishop takes Knight’s pawn.” The astronaut says “Hmm, that’s a good move. Er…Rook to King One.” HAL responds, “I’m sorry Frank. I think you missed it. Queen to Bishop Three (this should have been Queen to Bishop Six). Bishop takes Queen (not forced). Knight takes Bishop. Mate.” It is not a mate in two, but a mate in three. The astronaut responds, “Ah…Yeah, looks like you’re right. I resign.”

Roesch – Willi Schlage, Hamburg 1910
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb4 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.Qe2 b5 6.Bb3 Be7 7.c3 O-O 8.O-O d5 9.exd5 Nxd5 10.Nxe5 Nf4 11.Qe4 Nxe5 12.Qxa8 Qd3 13.Bd1 Bh3 14.Qxa6 Bxg2 15.Re1 Qf3 and White resigns since 16.Qc8 (if 16.Bxf3 Nxf3 mate; if 16.Re2 Nh3 mate) Rxc8 17.h3 Nxh3+ 18.Kh2 Ng4 mate 0-1

A Chess Dispute

This may have been the first movie with a chess scene. The movie was made in 1903 by R. W. Paul (Paul’s Animatograph Works of England). Two men are playing chess in a restaurant. One man makes a move while the other man is distracted. When he looks back at the board he disputes the move. They get in a fight, in which both fall to the ground below the camera’s view. Only their hats, boots, and some clothing being tossed in the air can be seen. Finally, the manager of the restaurant enters and lifts the two disheveled chess players into view.

Aagaard, Jacob (1973- )

Born on July 31, 1973. He is an international master from Denmark, but now lives in Glasgow, Scotland. He took 2nd place in the 111th Scottish Championship in 2004. He took 1st place in the 112th Scottish Championship in 2005, but is not a Scottish citizen yet. He has written several chess books, including Excelling at Chess and Inside the Chess Mind.

Schmied – Aagaard, Copenhagen 1985
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 d5 3.c4 e6 4.Bg5 dxc4 5.Qa4+ Nbd7 6.Qxc4 c5 7.Nc3 a6 8.a4 cxd4 9.Nxd4? (9.Qxd4) Ne5 0-1

Aaron, Manuel (1935- )

India’s first International Master (IM). He was born in Toungoo, Burma on December 30, 1935 and became an International Master in 1961. In 1960 he had a 2509 performance rating at the Leipzig Chess Olympiad (he defeated Max Euwe). In 1962 he took last place out of 23 players in the Stockholm Interzonal (but he did defeat Portisch and Uhlmann). He became an International Arbiter in 1986. His highest FIDE rating was 2420. He has won the state of Tamil Nadu (Madras) 10 times and the India National Championship 9 times. These records still stand. He is the director of the Aaron Chess Academy, India’s first chess academy and the founder (1982) and editor of Chess Mate magazine.

Aaron – Suer, Varna Chess Olympiad 1962
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.c4 Bg7 4.Nc3 O-O 5.e4 d6 6.Be2 c5 7.d5 Na6 8.O-O Nc7 9.h3 a6 10.a4 Rb8 11.Bf4 Nd7 12.Re1 Ne5 13.Nxe5 Bxe5 14.Bxe5 dxe5 15.Bg4 f5 16.exf5 gxf5 17.Bh5 Qd6 18.Qe2 e4 19.f3 b5 20.axb5 axb5 21.fxe4 fxe4 22.Qxe4 b4 23.Nd1 e6 24.dxe6 Bxe6 25.Ra7 Bf5 26.Qe7 Qd4+? (26...Qxe7) 27.Kh1 Ne8?? (27...Rbc8) 28.Bf7+ (28...Kh8 29.Qxf8 mate; 28...Kg7 29.Bxe8+ Kg8 30.Re5 wins) 1-0

Aarseth, Sverre (1934- )

Chess master from Norway. He participated in the 6th World Correspondence Chess Championship in 1971 and finished 14th out of 15 players. He lost one game in 14 moves.

Aarseth – Rittner, 6th World Correspondence Championship 1971
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.Qg4 Ne7 6.dxc5 Nbc6 7.Nf3 d4 8.Bb5 Qa5 9.Bxc6+ bxc6 10.Qxg7 (10.Qxd4) 10...Rg8 11.Qxh7 Ba6 12.Ng5 Bxc3+ 13.Kd1 O-O-O 14.Nxf7 d3! (15.Nxd8 Qa4 16.b3 Qg4+ 17.f3 Qxg2 18.cxd3 Qxh1+ 19.Kc2 Rg2+ 20.Kxc3 Nd5+ 21.Kd4 Qg1+ 22.Ke4 Re2+ 23.Be3 Qxe3 mate) 0-1

Abdelnabbi, Imed (1963- )

International Master (1985) and Egypt’s top rated player.

Domingos – Abdelnabbi, Abuja 2003
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 d5 3.c4 e6 4.Nc3 c5 5.e3 Nc6 6.a3 a6 7.Bd3 dxc4 8.Bxc4 b5 9.Bd3 Bb7 10.O-O Rc8 11.dxc5 Bxc5 12.Qe2 Qc7 13.Ne4 Ne5 14.Nxf6+ gxf6 15.Nxe5 Qxe5 16.f3 Rg8 17.Kh1 Bd6 18.f4? (18.g3) Rxg2! 0-1

Abdulaziz, Mahmoud (1972- )

Champion of Lebanon (Libanaise) in 2000.

Abdulaziz – Talal Abas, Beruit 2001
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.g3 g6 3.Bg2 Bg7 4.O-O O-O 5.d3 d5 6.Nbd2 c5 7.c4 Nc6 8.a3 b6 9.Rb1 Bb7 10.b4 cxb4 11.axb4 dxc4 12.Nxc4 Nd4 13.Nxd4 Bxg2 14.Ne6 Qd5? (14…exf6) 15.Nf4 1-0

Abonyi, Istvan (1886-1942)

Hungarian master from Budapest. In 1922 he published analysis on the Abonyi Gambit of the Budapest Defense (1,d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.e4 Nxd5 5.f4 Nec6) in Deutsches Wochenschach. He was one of the 15 founders of FIDE in 1924.

Abonyi – Hromadka, Prague 1908
1,e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bb5 Nd4 5.Ba4 c6 6.O-O Bc5 7.Nxe5 d6 8.Nd3 Bg4 9.Qe1 Nf3+ 10.gxf3 Bxf3 11.e5 O-O 12.exd6 Ng4 13.Qe7 Bxd6 0-1

Abrahams, Gerald (1907-1980)

British lawyer (barrister), chess master and chess author. His eight chess books include Teach Yourself Chess (1948), The Chess Mind (1952), Handbook of Chess (1960), Technique in Chess (1961), Test Your Chess (1963), Pan Book of Chess (1966), Not Only Chess (1974), and Brilliancies in Chess (1977). He introduced the Abrahams variation (also called the Noteboom variation) of the Queen’s Gambit Declined (1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 c6 4.Nf3 dxc4 5.a4 Bb4 6.e3 b5 7.Bd2 a5) in 1925 (Allcock-Abrahams, England 1925). In 1933 he finished in 3rd place in the British Championship. In 1946, he defeated Viaschelav Ragozin (who later became the second World Correspondence Champion) in the Anglo-Soviet radio match, winning one game and drawing one game.

Unknown – Abrahams, England 1929
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 c6 4.e4 Bb4 5.Bd3 e5 6.dxe5 dxe4 7.Bxe4 Bxc3+ 8.bxc3 Qxd1+ 9.Kxd1 Be6 10.Rb1 Na6 11.Rxb7? (11.Be3) 11...O-O-O+! (12.Kc2 Kxb7 wins) 0-1

Abramovic, Bosko (1951- )

Serbia/Montenegro Grandmaster (1984). He won at Belgrade in 1984 and was second at Montpellier in 1986. He took 16th-20th in the 1993 Biel FIDE Interzonal. His highest FIDE rating has been 2633 and currently, it is 2489.

Abramovic – Chiburdanidze, Montpelier 1986
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O b5 6.Bb3 Bb7 7.c3 g6 8.d4 exd4 9.e5 Ne4 10.Re1 Nc5 11.cxd4 Nxb3 12.Qxb3 Nb4 13.Nc3 Nd3 14.Ne4 Bxe4 15.Bg5 Be7 16.Bxe7 Qxe7 17.Rxe4 1-0

Abreu, Aryam (1978- )

International Master from Cuba. His highest rating has been 2510.

Abreu – Van Riemsdijk, Columbia 2001
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.f4 b5 7.e5 b4 8.Qf3 Ra7 9.exf6 bxc3 10.Qxc3 gxf6 11.Be3 Rc7 12.Qd2 Nd7 13.Be2 Bb7 14.Ne6 Qc8 15.Nxc7+ Qxc7 16.O-O Rg8 17.Bf3 f5 18.Bd4 d5 19.Rae1 e6 20.Bh5 Qc6 21.Rxe6+ Qxe6 22.Re1 Kd8 23.Rxe6 fxe6 24.Bf7 1-0

Acers, Jude (1944- )

Born in Long Beach on April 6, 1944. He is a U.S. senior chess master now living in New Orleans who has set several world record simultaneous exhibition records. He learned to play chess at age 7 and was a master at age 17. In 1966 at the Louisiana State Fair, he played 114 opponents simultaneously and won all 114 games. In 1976 he played 179 opponents simultaneously in Long Island. He has toured 48 states and 5 countries to give over a thousand chess exhibitions. When not touring and playing in other chess tournaments, Jude can be found at his World Chess table on the Gazebo sidewalk terracem 1018 Decatur Street (the French Quarter), New Orleans, Louisiana. He is known as the man with the red beret. In 2005, he survived hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and was evacuated to Tennessee.

Steers – Acers, Santa Monica 1968
1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4 5.Qa4+ N8c6 6.a3 Na6! 7.d5 Nc5 8.Qb5 b6 9.dxc6 a5 10.b4 Ba6 11.bxc5 Bxb5 12.cxb5 Qd4 (13.Ra2 Qe4+ 14.Ne2 Qxb1) 0-1

Acevedo, Armando (1937- )

FIDE master and former champion of Mexico. In 2001, when Nigel Short thought he was playing Bobby Fischer on the Internet, he asked his opponent when he played Acevedo. The response was immediate. “Siegen 1970.” Fischer had played Acevedo in the Siegen Chess Olympiad in 1970. Acevedo played in the 1966 and 1970 chess Olympiads for Mexico. He was the first Mexican FIDE master.

Acevedo – Fischer, Siegen 1970
1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 c5 3. c3 g6 4. g3 b6 5. Bg2 Bb7 6. O-O Bg7 7. Nbd2 O-O 8. Re1 d5 9. Ne5 Nc6 10. Ndf3 Rc8 11. Nxc6 Bxc6 12. Bh3 Bd7 13. Bf1 Bc6 14. Ne5 Bb7 15. a4 Ne4 16. f3 Nd6 17. e3 Qc7 18. a5 f6 19. axb6 axb6 20. Nd3 e5 21. Nf2 e4 22. f4 Ra8 23. Bd2 Rxa1 24. Qxa1 Ra8 25. Qb1 Qc6 26. b3 Ba6 27. Qb2 Bxf1 28. Rxf1 c4 29. b4 Qa4 30. Rb1 Bf8 31. Kf1 Nb5 32. Ke2 f5 33. Nd1 Kf7 34. Nf2 Qa2 35. Nd1 Ke6 36. Qxa2 Rxa2 37. Rb2 Ra1 38. Be1 Kd7 39. Bd2 Kc6 40. Be1 Na3 41. Kd2 Kb5 42. Bf2 Ka4 43. Be1 Be7 44. Bf2 Nb5 45. Kc2 Ka3 46. Rb1 Ra2+ 47. Rb2 Nxc3 48. Kxc3 Ra1 0-1

Acs, Peter (1981- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1998) and the 2001 World Junior Chess Champion. His highest rating has been 2603. He has represented Hungary in three Olympiads (2000, 2002, and 2004).

Van Wely – Acs, Netherlands 2002
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 O-O 5.Bd3 d5 6.cxd5 exd5 7.Ne2 Re8 8.O-O Bd6 9.a3 Ng4 10.h3 Nh2 11.Re1 Nf3+ 12.gxf3 Qg5+ 13.Kh1 Qh4 14.Nf4 Bxh3 15.Ncxd5 Re6 16.Nxe6 Bf5+ 17.Kg1 Qh2+ 18.Kf1 Bg3 0-1

Acs – Donchenko, Tel Aviv 2001
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be3 Ng4 7.Bg5 h6 8.Bh4 g5 9.Bg3 Bg7 10.Be2 h5 11.Nf5 Bxf5 12.exf5 Qa5 13.O-O Bxc3 14.bxc3 f6 15.Rb1 Nc6 16.Rxb7 Rd8 17.Qd3 h4 18.Qc4 Nge5 19.Bxe5 Nxe5 20.Qe6 Nd7 21.Bc4 1-0

Active Chess

Active chess (30 minutes per game) was introduced in 1987 by FIDE and was mostly used for demonstrations and other unofficial events. The first official Active Chess (30 minutes per game) tournament was held in Gijon, Spain in 1988 and won by Karpov. Karpov, in December of 1988, won the World Active Championship (a FIDE event with 61 players) in Mazatlan, Mexico and received $50,000. The organizers of the event donated $100,000 for AIDS research. Initial attempts to organize a world championship for active chess was opposed by world champion Gary Kasparov. He was quoted as saying, “Active Chess? What does that make me, the Passive World Champion?” Later, Kasparov organized his own brand of fast chess, called “Rapid Chess” with a time control of 25 minutes a game. This name and event was adopted by FIDE in 1989 so as not to imply an inactive chess title if FIDE awarded an Active Chess title.

Active Chess Player

In 1995, Robert Smeltzer of Dallas, Texas, played 2,266 USCF rated games in one year, the most ever.

Adams, Michael (1971- )

Highest rated 13 year old ever, rated 2405 in 1986. In 1988 he was the only winner in a 10-board satellite simultaneous exhibition with Kasparov. He won the 76th British Championship in 1989 at age 17, the youngest ever. In 1989, he became at Grandmaster at 17. In 1997 he lost to Anand in the semi-finals of the FIDE World Chess Championship. In 1998 he had an Elo rating of 2715 and was the 5th strongest player in the world. In 2002 he was rated 2757 and was the 4th strongest player in the world (behind Kasparov, Kramnik, and Anand). Three times he has reached the semi-finals of the FIDE World Chess Championship. In 2005, while ranked 7 in the world, he lost a chess match with the Hydra chess program, losing 5 games and drawing one game.

Wickert – M. Adams, Islington 1992
1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5 Ne4 3.Bf4 c5 4.d5 Qb6 5.Nd2 Qxb2 6.Ngf3? (6.Nxe4 Qxb4+ 7.c3) 6...Nc3 7.Nc4? (7.Qc1 Qxc1+ 8.Rxc1 Bxa2) 7... Nxd1 (8.Nxb2 Nxb2) 0-1

Ziemann – M. Adams, Germany 1992
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.O-O Nxe4 5.Re1 Ng5 6.Bxc6 dxc6 7.Rxe5+ Ne6 8.Ng5 Bd6 9.Qh5 g6 10.Nxf7 Kxf7 11.Qf3+ Qf6 12.Re3 Qf6 13.Qe4 Bf5 0-1

Adams, Weaver Warren (1901-1963)

Born on April 28, 1901 in Dedham Massachusetts. He was an American chess master. He participated in the U.S. Championship in 1936, 1940, 1944, 1946 and 1948. He won the Massachusetts State Championship in 1937, 1938, 1941 and 1945. In 1939, he wrote a book entitled White to Play and Win. After publication he played in the U.S. Open at Dallas. He did not win a single game as White (3 losses and 1 draw) and won all his games (4 games) as Black! Weaver Adams won the 49th U.S. Open, held in Baltimore, in 1948. He also wrote Simple Chess, How to Play Chess, and Absolute Chess. He died on January 6, 1963.

Weinstock – W. Adams, New York 1944
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.d4 exd4 5.Nxd4 Bb4 6.Bg5 h6 7.Bh4 d6 8.e3 Qe7 9.Be2 g5 10.Nxc6 bxc6 11.Bg3 Ne4 12.Qd4 O-O 13.O-O Nxc3 14.bxc3 Bc5 15.Qd3 f5 16.Rae1 Kh8 17.Bd1 Ba6 18.Bb3 Rae8 19.Kh1? (19.Qxf5) 19...f4 (20.exf4 Qxe1) 0-1

W. Adams – Santasiere, Baltimore (49th US Open) 1948
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bc4 c6 4.d4 Bb4 5.dxe5 Nxe4 6.Qd4 d5 7.exd6 O-O 8.Bf4 Re8 9.Ne2 Bc5 10.Bxf7+ Kf8 11.Qc4 b5 12.Qb3 Bxf2+ 13.Kf1 Nc5 14.Qa3 Nba6 15.b4 Kxf7 16.Kxf2 Ne4+ 17.Nxe4 Rxe4 18.Qf3 Qe8 19.Be5 1-0

Adamski, Andrzej (1939- )

Polish International Master (1980).

Adamski, Jan (1943- )

Polish International Master (1976). Polish Champion in 1982. He represented Poland in the 1968, 1970, 1974, and 1978 chess Olympiads. His FIDE rating is 2345.

Adamski – J. Christiansen, Copenhagen 2000
1. Nf3 f5 2. g3 Nf6 3. Bg2 e6 4. O-O Be7 5. c4 O-O 6. Nc3 d6 7. d4 Qe8 8.b3 Nc6 9. d5 exd5 10. cxd5 Ne5 11. Nd4 Qh5 12. f4 Neg4 13. h3 Nh6 14. Qd3 Ne4 15. g4 fxg4 16. Bxe4 gxh3 17. Bxh7+ Kh8 18. Kh1 Bh4 19. Qg6 1-0

Addison, William Grady (1933- )

Considered the best Go player among chess masters. He was born in Baton Rouge, came to San Francisco in the 1950s, and was the area’s strongest player for 20 years. He became an International Master in 1967. In 1969, he took 2nd place in the 20th US Chess Championship (1/2 point behind Reshevsky and ahead of Benko, Lombardy, etc.) and qualified to play in the Interzonal. He competed in the 1970 Interzonal in Palma de Mallorca, taking 18th place, and then gave up chess to work for the Bank of America in San Francisco. He played in five U.S. championships. His highest rating was 2595.

Addison – Kostro, Havana 1966
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 O-O 5.Ne2 d5 6.a3 Be7 7.cxd5 Nxd5 8.e4 Nxc3 9.Nxc3 c5 10.d5 exd5 11.Nxd5 Nc6 12.Bc4 Bd6 13.O-O Qh4 14.f4 Bg4 15.Qd3 Nd4 16.Rf2 Rae8 17.Be3 Rxe4? (17...b5) 18.Qxe4 Bf5 19.g3 (19...Bxe4 20.gxh4) 1-0

Adianto, Utut (1965- )

First Indonesian Grandmaster (1986) and best chess player in Indonesia. He was born in Jakarta, Indonesia. He learned the game of chess at the age of six. He won the Jakarta Junior Championship at age 12. He won the Indonesian national championship in 1982. He tied for 1st place at San Francisco in 1987. His highest rating has been 2663. Between 1990 and 1995, he was the second strongest Asian chess player, after Anand. He is the Chairman of the Indonesian Chess Association (Percasi).

Adianto – Neamtu, Biel 1994
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e4 Nf6 4.e5 Nd5 5.Bxc4 Nb6 6.Bb3 Bf5 7.Nc3 e6 8.Nge2 Nc6 9.a3 Be7 10.O-O O-O 11.h3 h6 12.Ba2 Qd7 13.Be3 Rad8 14.Qc1 Na5 15.Bxh6 gxh6 16.Qxh6 Rfe8 (16...Nac4) 17.Ng3 Bf8 18.Qg5+ Bg6 19.Nce4 Bg7 20.Nf6+ Bxf6 21.exf6 Qxd4?? (21...Qd6) 22.Rad1 (22...Qa4 or 22...Qxd1, 23.Qh6 and 24.Qg7 mate) 1-0


First introduced at Paris in 1878. Adjournment is a time out between playing sessions, generally overnight. The side that is on the move seals a legal move, sight unseen by his opponent. When play resumes, the sealed move is played on the board, and the game continues. Players were forbidden to analyze their games during adjournments, but this became difficult to enforce. In the 1930s analytical assistance by seconds became acceptable.

Adly, Ahmed (1987- )

The first Egyptian Grandmaster (2005), and the youngest-everfrom Africa. In 2003, he contracted malaria while playing in a chess tournament in Nigeria. He then went straight from Nigeria to Greece to participate in the World Youth Championship. Doctors discovered he had malaria and saved him. Two of his chess-playing friends returned to Egypt and died. In 2004, he took 3rd place in the World Under-18 championship. In 2005, he won the Arab Junior Championship.

Adorjan, Andras (1950- )

Hungarian chess grandmaster who took 2nd place, behind Anatoly Karpov, at the 1969 World Junior Championship in Stockholm. At the time, he played under the last name Jocha. He later adopted his mother’s surname, Adorjan. He became an International Master in 1970 and a Grandmaster in 1973. He is the author of Black is OK! In 1977, during a game with Pachman in Munich, he had a heart attack and fell from his chair. He was rushed to the hospital and survived. In 1979 he tied (with Ribli) for 3rd-4th in the Riga Interzonal (behind Tal and Polugaevsky). In 1980, he lost his Candidates match to Robert Huebner with 1 won, 2 losses, and 7 draws. He won the New York Open in 1987. His highest rating has been 2675. As a junior, he played under the name Andras Jocha.

Spassov – Adorjan, Sochi 1977
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 d6 4.Nf3 g6 5.g3 Bg7 6.Bg2 b5 7.cxb5 a6 8.bxa6 Qa5+ 9.Nc3 Ne4 10.Qc2? Nxc3 11.Bd2 Qa4! (12.Qxa4 Nxa4) 0-1

Adorjan – Zsinka, Budapest 1982
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 c5 4.Nc3 cxd4 5.Nxd4 b6 6.Ndb5 d6 7.Bf4 e5 8.Bg5 Be7? (8...Bb7) 9.Bxf6 gxf6 10.Qd5 Nc6 11.Qxc6+ Bd7 12.Nc7+ (12...Kf8 13.Qxa8 Qxa8 14.Nxa8) 1-0


America’s Foundation for Chess, which sponsored the US chess championship since 2000. It was founded in June 2000 to promote chess in the schools. Grandmaster Yasser Seirawan was instrumental in the founding of the AF4C in Seattle, Washington. The AF4C sponsored the US chess championship when the US Chess Federation was unable to sponsor it.


Chess was forbidden by the Taliban in Afghanistan for 15 years, possibly to prevent intellectuals from getting together. The Taliban believed chess as a form of gambling and it distracted people from saying their prayers. For five years, Afghanistan was the only place in the world where chess was illegal. There is only one master in Afghanistan, Ismail Ibrahim. There are only 7 players from Afghanistan that have a FIDE rating. Afghanistan first became affiliated with FIDE in 1984. In 1989, Afghanistan issued stamps with a chess motif (chess in Alfonso paintings). Afghanistan was temporally excluded from FIDE for non-payment of debt.

Agababean, Naira (1951- )

Woman Grandmaster from Moldava. She is a former Armenian woman chess champion. Her daughter is Woman Grandmaster Almira Skripchenko, who married Grandmaster Joel Lautier of France.

Agdestein, Simen (1967- )

Norway’s first Grandmaster (1985) who shared first place (with Walter Arencibea) in the World Junior Champion in 1986. He became an International Master in 1983 at the age of 16. He became the youngest grandmaster in the world at age 18 when he won the title. He has won the Norwegian championship four times, the first time as a 15-year-old in 1982. He has also represented Norway on their professional soccer (football) team, but had to give it up due to injuries (torn ligament in his knee). He is currently a teacher at the Norwegian Sports Gymnasium, teaching soccer and chess. He is also a chess columnist for a Norwegian newspaper. His highest rating has been 2716, ranked #12 in the world. Currently, he is a trainer to Magnus Carlsen, one of the youngest grandmasters in the world.

Agdestein – Quinteros, Tessaloniki Olympiad 1984
1.d4 d6 2.Nf3 g6 3.c4 Bg7 4.g3 Nf6 5.Bg2 O-O 6.O-O Nc6 7.Nc3 Bg4 8.d5 Na5 9.Nd2 c5 10.h3 Bd7 11.Rb1 e5 12.a3 b6 13.e4 Ne8 14.b4 Nb7 15.Nb3 f5 16.exf5 gxf5 17.bxc5 Nxc5 18.Nxc5 dxc5 19.d6 e4 20.Nd5 Be6 21Bf4 Nxd6? (21...Kh8) 22.Bxd6 (22...Qxd6 23.Nf6+ and 24.Qxd6) 1-0

Age of Chess players

Capablanca learned the game of chess at age 4 by watching his father play. Karpov was taught the moves at age 4. Spassky learned the game at age 5 and later joined the Pioneer Palace in Leningrad where he spent 5 hours every day on chess. Former world woman champion Nona Gaprindashvili learned at age 5 by watching her brothers play. Fischer learned at age 6, taught by his older sister after reading the rules that came with a box of chessmen. Smyslov learned at age 6 by reading a chess book found in his father’s library. Larsen learned at age 6 and later gave up his civil engineering studies to become a full-time chess professional. Alekhine learned at age 7 from his heiress mother. Petrosian learned at age 8. When his parents died when he was 16, he took up chess full time. Tal learned at age 8 by watching patients play chess at his father’s hospital. He joined the Riga Palace of Young Pioneers and was given a chess coach when he was 10. Euwe learned at age 9 and was taught by his parents. Emanual Lasker learned at age 11, taught by his older brother. Botvinnik learned the game at age 12. Steinitz learned at age 12 from his school friends. Browne learned at age 13 after joining the Manhattan chess club. Blackburne did not learn chess until he was 19 after reading a chess book. Two years later he was giving blindfold simultaneous exhibitions. Staunton did not learn until age 19 and did not become a serious player until age 26. Mir Sultan Khan learned the game at age 21. Two years later he was All India chess champion. A year later he won the British Championship. He was illiterate his entire life, unable to read or write.

Ager Chessmen

Chessmen made of rock crystal that used to be preserved in a church in Ager, Spain. 96 pieces were made around 1071. Only a few pieces survive today. There is a myth that this chess set belonged to Charlemagne. It is also known as the Urgel or Urgell chess chessmen, a nearby village. Parts of these pieces are preserved in Lerida. 15 pieces reappeared in a public auction and purchased by the Emir of Kuwait. The collection was plundered by Iraqi soldiers during the Gulf War, but has since returned.

Agnel, Hyacinth R. (1799-1871)

He was a professor (taught French) and Colonel at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and a chess problemist. In 1845, he formed the first chess club at West Point. Author of a chess book with perhaps the longest title. The Book of Chess containing the Rudiments of the Game, and Elementary Analysis of the Most Popular Openings, Exemplified in Games Actually Played by the Greatest Masters; Including Staunton’s Analysis of the King’s and Queen’s Gambits, Numerous Positions and Problems on Diagrams, Both Original and Selected; Also a Series of Chess Tales, With Illustrations Engraved From Original Designs, The Whole Extracted and Translated From the Best Sources. The book was written in 1847 by Agnel and published in 1859 by D. Appleton and Company of New York. The book is 509 pages long. In 1848, he wrote Chess for Winter Evenings. It was later called : Agnel’s Book of Chess. Agnel was on the Committee on the Chess Code during the First American Chess Congress. He was a frequent chess opponent of General Winfield Scott. He died in 1871 and is buried at West Point.

Agrest, Evgenij (1966- )

Grandmaster now living in Sweden (since 1994). He was born in Belarus. His FIDE rating is 2592. In 2003, he won a game from former world champion Ponomariov when Ponomariov’s cell phone rang during their match. A cell phone ringing during a match is an automatic disqualification. Ironically, Agrest lost a game in 2004 when his cell phone rang. Was it Ponomariov calling? He was Nordic Chess Champion in 2001 and 2003. He was Swedish Champion in 1998, 2001, 2002, and 2004.

Aguado, Jose Sanz (1907-1969)

Spanish chess champion in 1943.

Agzamov, Georgy Tadzhiyevich (1954-1986)

Uzbekistan Grandmaster (1984) who was killed when he tried to take a shortcut to go swimming in Sevastopol. He fell off a cliff and got stuck between two rocks. Some people heard him yell for help, but he was too deep down in the rocks. He died before a rescue team could get to him. His highest rating was 2728, ranked #8 in the world. He won Belgrade 1982, Sochi 1984, Tashkent 1984, and Calcutta 1986.

Agzamov – Gulko, Sochi 1985
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Bf4 Bg7 5.e3 c5 6.dxc5 Qa5 7.Rc1 Ne4 8.cxd5 Nxc3 9.Qd2 Qxa2 10.bxc3 Qa5 11.Bc4 Nd7 12.Nf3 Nxc5 13.Be5 O-O 14.O-O f6 15.Ra1 Qd8 16.Bc7 Qd7 17.d6+ e6 18.Nd4 Qf7 19.Ra5 b6 20.Rxc5 bxc5 21.Nb3 Qd7 22.Qd3 Rd8? (22...Qc6) 23.Qe4 (23...Bb7 24.Qxb7 Rab8 25.Bxe6+ Qxe6 26.Bxb8) 1-0

Ahlhausen, Carl (1835-1892)

Librarian of the Berlin Chess Association. His historical chess rating is 2471, ranked #44 in the world in 1889. He was an early player of 1.g4, sometimes known as the Ahlhausen Opening (better known as Grob’s Attack).

Ahues, Carl Oscar (1883-1968)

German International Master (1950). German champion in 1929. He was winning blitz chess tournaments in Germany in his 80s. His Elo rating was around 2490. His highest historical rating was 2651, ranked #11 in the world in 1931. Father of Herbert Ahues.

Ahues – Gregory, Hamburg 1921
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.Nc3 d6 5.d4 Bd7 6.O-O exd4 7.Nxd4 Be7 8.Nde2 O-O 9.Ng3 Kh8 10.b3 Qe8 11.Bb2 Bd8 12.f4 Ne7 13.e5 Ng4 14.Bxd7 Qxd7 15.Nce4 Ne3 16.Qh5 Qg4 17.Rf3 N7f5 18.Qxg4 1-0

Ahues, Herbert (1922- )

Son of Carl Ahues. In 1989 he became a Grandmaster for Chess Compositions.

C. Ahues – Gregory, Hamburg 1921
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.Nc3 d6 5.d4 Bd7 6.O-O exd4 7.Nxd4 Be7 8.Nde2 O-O 9.Ng3 Kh8 10.b3 Qe8 11.Bb2 Bd8 12.f4 Ne7 13.e5 Ng4 14.Bxd7 Qxd7 15.Nce4 Ne3 16.Qh5 Qg4 17.Rf3 N7f5 18.Qxg4 1-0


The Association Internationale de la Presse Echiqueene (AIPE) was the International Association of Chess Press. It was an organization of chess journalists founded in 1967 by Jordi Puig of Barcelona, Spain. AIPE awarded the Chess Oscars from 1967 (first won by Bent Larsen) to 1988 (won by Kasparov for the 7th time in a row) to the outstanding male and female players of the year. AIPE dissolved in 1989. The Chess Oscar was revived in 1995 (won by Kasparov).

Aitken, James Macrae (1908-1983)

Scottish player who won the Scottish chess championship 10 times (1935, 1952, 1953, 1955-1958, 1960, 1961, and 1965). He was also London champion in 1950. His highest rating was 2525. His PhD dissertation was on the Lisbon Inquisition.

Aitken – Hunter, Scotland 1949
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Bb4 5.O-O Nge7 6.d4 exd4 7.Nxd4 d5? (7...O-O) 8.exd5 Qxd5 9.Nxc6 Qxd1 10.Nxb4+ Bd7 11.Rxd1 (11...Bxa4 12.Nc3) 1-0


The name of the chess automaton built by Charles Alfred Hopper, a Bristol cabinet-maker, in 1865. Several chess and checker masters (such as Albert Hodges, Burille, and Pillsbury) operated the life-size Indian figure. One opponent shot at Ajeeb after losing a game, wounding the operator. One of the operators of Ajeeb was chess and checker master Constant Ferdinand Burille. During his years as operator, he played over 900 games of chess and only lost 3 games. He never lost a single checker game. Pillsbury was its hidden operator from 1898 to 1904. When Ajeeb was on display in New York at the Eden Musee, it played checkers for a dime and chess for a quarter. Opponents included Theodore Roosevelt, Houdini, Admiral Dewey, O. Henry and Sarah Bernhardt. Ajeeb was 10 feet high. Ajeeb was first exhibited at the Royal Polytechnical Institute in London in 1868. It was lodged at the Crystal Palace between 1868 and 1876 and then went to the Royal Aquarium at Westminster until 1877. It was then taken to Berlin where over 100,000 saw it in three months. It came to New York in 1885. It was destroyed by fire at Coney Island in 1929. Charles Barker, US checkers champion, also worked Ajeeb, never losing a single game.

Akesson, Ralf (1961- )

Swedish Grandmaster. He was European Junior Champion in 1980-81. He was Swedish Champion in 1985. His has been rated as high as 2535.

Akhmilovskaya, Elena Bronisklavovna (1957- )

Woman Grandmaster (1977) from Tbilisi, Georgia who was the 1986 World Women's Championship challenger (losing to Maya Chiburdanidze with 1 win, 4 losses, and 9 draws). She was equal first in the 1988 challengers, but lost the playoff to Ioseliani. In 1988 she eloped with American International Master John Donaldson, captain of the US team, while playing in the chess Olympiad in Thessaloniki, Greece. At the time, she was the number two Soviet woman player. The two were married at the U.S. Consulate in Greece. She returned to the Soviet Union almost a year later to get her 7 year-old daughter. It took three weeks to secure their exit visas. Her mother, Lydia Akhmilovskaya, qualified several times for the USSR Women's Championship and was a top-ranked correspondence player.

Akhmilovskaya – Dahl, Thessaloniki Olympiad 1988
1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 e6 4.e3 f5 5.g4 fxg4 6.Ne5 Nf6 7.Nc3 Nbd7 8.Nxg4 Nxg4 9.Qxg4 Nf6 10.Qg5 Bd7 11.Bd2 Qe7 12.O-O-O O-O-O 13.f3 c5 14.Be1 cxd4 15.exd4 h6 (15...Bc6) 16.Qe5 Qd6 17.Bg3 Bc6 18.Bh3 dxc4? (18...Kd7) 19.Qa5 (19...Qd7 20.Bxe6 Qxe6 21.Qc7 mate) 1-0

Akhsharumova, Anna Markovna (1957- )

Woman Grandmaster who finished first in the 1976 Soviet Women's Championship. Her husband, Boris Gulko, tied for first in the 1977 Soviet Men's Championship. By all rights, she should have won the 1983 Soviet Women's title played in Tallinn when she defeated her main competitor, Nana Ioseliani after she won by time forfeit. It would have given her 12 points to Nana's 11 points. The next day, Ioseliani filed a protest alleging a malfunction in the clock. Anna refused to play. The result of her game was arbitrarily reversed by the All-Union Board of Referees in Moscow, thereby forfeiting her title and ending up in 3rd place. She was the USSR Women’s Champion in 1976 and 1984. She and her husband immigrated to the United States in 1986. She won the U.S. Women's championship in 1987 with a perfect 9-0 score. In 1990, she tied for 5th-6th place in the Genting Women’s Interzonal.

Rudolph – Akhsharumova, Malaysia, 1990
1.e4 g6 2.Nc3 Bg7 3.g3 c5 4.Bg2 Nc6 5.d3 d6 6.Nge2 e6 7.O-O Nge7 8.Be3 Nd4 9.Nf4 O-O 10.Qd2 Rb8 11.Nd1 b6 12.c3 Ba6 13.Nh5 gxh5 14.cxd4 cxd4 15.Bg5 f6 16.Bh4 Ng6 17.Qe2 Kh8 18.Qxh5 Bxd3 19.Re1 Nxh4 20.Qxh4 f5 21.Qh3 e5 22.f3 (22.exf5) 22...fxe4 23.fxe4 Qf6 24.Rc1 Rb7 25.Bf1 Bh6 (26.Rc6 Be3+ 27.Nxe3 Qf2+; 26.Bxd3 Bxc1 27.Rf1 Qg7; 26.Rc8 Bd2) 0-1

Akins, Claude (1926-1993)

Movie and television actor (Sheriff Lobo) and chess enthusiast. He taught Dean Martin how to play chess. He played chess and won several games against John Wayne.

Akobian, Varuzhan (1983- )

International Grandmaster (2004), born in Armenia. In 2002, he tied for 1st place in the World Open. In 2002, he won the Samford Fellowship. In 2003, he won the U.S. Junior Championship and the American Open. In 2004, he won the World Open, National Open, and North American Open. He lives in Glendale, California.

Akopian, Vladimir (1971- )

Armenian grandmaster (1991) who won the World Under-16 Championship in 1986 at the age of 14 won the World Under-18 Championship at 16 and was World Junior Champion in 1991. He tied for 1st at the U.S. Open in 1991. In 1999 he played without a single loss in the FIDE knockout world championship at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas until Alexander Khalifman defeated him in the final match. He was given the title of Vice Champion of the World. His highest rating has been 2714, ranked #12 in the world.

Steinbacher – Akopian, Groningen 1990
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e3 Bg7 6.Bc4 Nxc3 7.bxc3 c5 8.Qf3 O-O 9.Ne2 Qc7 10.Bd5 Nd7 11.Bb3 Nf6 12.e4 cxd4 13.cxd4 Bg4 14.Qg3 Qa5+ 15.Bd2? (15.Qc3) 15...Qxd2+ (16.Kxd2 Nxe4+ and 17...Nxg3) 0-1

Al-Adli (800-870)

The first great Arabic chess champion and author. He lived during the reign (847-861) of Caliph Mutawakkil. Al-adli’s chess book (now lost) contained chess problems, endgames and openings.

Al-Modiahki, Mohamad (1974- )

First Grandmaster from Qatar. He is the highest rated Arab, with a FIDE rating of 2570. He is married to former world women’s champion Zhu Chen.


Moorish poet-king who reigned over Seville in the late 11th century. He was regarded as a chess patron and kept several chess masters in his kingdom. In 1078 Alfonso VI and Ibn-Ammar, chess master in al_Mutamid's court, played a game of chess for the stake of Seville. Ibn-Ammar won and the city was spared from siege. Alfonso kept the chess set and board.

Al-Rashid (?-809)

Abbasid Caliph of Baghdad (786-809) who favored chess and granted liberal pensions to chess masters in his court around 800 A.D.

Aladdin (Ala’Addin, As Tabrizi)

The strongest chess player at the end of the 14th century. He was also known as Ali Shatrangi (Ali the Chess player). He could successfully give odds to all other leading players. He was Chinese and a lawyer from Samarkand (now in modern day Uzbekistan). He was at the court of Timur (Tamerlane), who made Samarkand his capital.

Alapin, Semyon Zinovievich (1856-1923)

Russian chess master and openings analyst. He was born in Vilnius, Lithuania. He later settled in St. Petersburg, then Heidelberg, Germany. While studying at St. Petersburg Engineering Institute, he became one of the strongest players in the city. In 1879, he tied for first in the Best Russian Players tournament in St. Petersburg, but lost the play-off to Chigorin. In 1880 and 1881, he lost a match against Chigorin. In 1893, he tied for 1st place in the championship of Berlin. In 1899, he drew a match with Schlechter in Vienna (+1-1=4). In 1902 he was ranked #8 in the world. In 1911, he won the championship of Munich. Alapin’s Opening is 1.e4 e5 2.Ne2. The Sicilian, Alapin variation is 1.e4 c5 2.c3. Alapin’s Gambit is 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Be3. He was a linguist and involved in grain commodities. He spent his later years in Heidelberg, Germany and died there in 1923.

Alapin – Marshall, Ostende 1905
1.e4 e5 2.f4 d5 3.exd5 e4 4.d3 Nf6 5.dxe4 Nxe4 6.Nf3 Bc5 7.Qe2 f5 8.Nc3 Bf2+ 9.Kd1 O-O 10.Bd2 Nxc3+ 11.Bxc3 Qxd5+ 12.Kc1 Rd8? (12...Bc5) 13.b4 Bb6 14.Qe7 (threatening 15.Qxg7 mate) 14...Qd7 15.Bc4+ Kh8 16.Bxg7 mate 1-0

Alatortsev, Vladimir (1909-1987)

Russian International Master (1950) and honorary Grandmaster (1983). He had been the city champion of Leningrad (1933 and Moscow (1936, 1937). He took 2nd place in the USSR championship in 1933, behind Botvinnik. In 1935, he drew a match with Lilienthal. From 1931 to 1950, he played in 9 USSR championships. He won the Latvian championship in 1945. From 1954 to 1961, he was head of the Soviet Chess Federation. His highest rating was 2626.

Alatortsev – Mazel, Moscow 1931
1.d4 e6 2.Nf3 d5 3.g3 Nf6 4.Bg2 Bd6 5.O-O O-O 6.c4 c6 7.Nbd2 Nbd7 8.Qc2 Re8 9.Rd1 e5 10.cxd5 cxd5 11.dxe5 Nxe5 12.Nxe5 Rxe5 13.Nf3 Bf5 14.Qb3 Re7 15.Bg5 Be4 16.Bxf6 gxf6 17.Nd4 Bc5 18.e3 Rc8 (18...Qb6) 19.Bxe4 dxe4 20.Nc6 bxc6 21.Rxd8+ Rxd8 22.Rc1 (22...Rd5 23.Qa4) 1-0

Albin, Adolf (1848-1920)

Romanian chess master (born in Bucharest) who learned the game at age 23. In 1872 he authored the first chess book written in Romanian, Amiculu Jocului de Schach. He played in his first international tournament at 43 (Vienna 1891). In 1894 he took 2nd at New York, behind Steinitz, but ahead of Showalter and Pillsbury. By 1895, his rating was 2643, ranked #15 in the world. The Albin Counter-Gambit is 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e5. Albin played this gambit against Emanuel Lasker in New York in 1893, but lost in 31 moves. Lasker won the tournament (13 wins in a row) and Albin took 2nd place.

Albin – Shipley, New York 1894
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.O-O Nf6 5.c3 O-O 6.d4 exd4 7.cxd4 Bb6 8.d5 Ne7 (8...Na5) 9.e5 Ne8 10.d6 cxd6 11.exd6 Ng6 12.Bg5 Nf6 13.Nc3 h6 14.Qd3 hxg5? (14...Kh8) 15.Qxg6! Nh7 16.Nd5 fxg6?? 17.Ne7+ Kh8 18.Nxg6 mate 1-0

Alburt, Lev Osipovich (1945- )

Russian Grandmaster (1977) from Odessa who defected from the USSR to the United States in 1979. He was three-time Ukrainian champion, first winning in 1974. He has won the U.S. Championship 3 times (1984, 1985, 1990) and the U.S. Open twice. He led the U.S. team at the 1980 Malta Olympiad. He has a doctorate in physics and natural philosophy. He was the first grandmaster ever elected to the governing body of the United States Chess Federation (USCF). His highest rating was 2667, ranked #28 in the world.

Norquist – Alburt, Chicago 1989
1.e4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.e5 Nfd7 4.Nxd5 Nxe5 5.Ne3 Nbc6 6.c3 Nd3+ 7.Bxd3 Qxd3 8.Qe2 Qxe2+ 9.Nxe2 e5 10.f4 Bc5 11.Nd5 Bd6 12.fxe5 Nxe5 13.d4 Nd3+ 14.Kf1 O-O 15.Nef4? (15.Bf4) 15...Nxc1 (16.Rxc1 c6, winning one of the knights) 0-1

Albert – Hebden, New York 1983
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 b5 4.cxb5 a6 5.e3 g6 6.Nc3 Bg7 7.a4 O-O 8.Nf3 Bb7 9.Be2 b6 10.dxe6 fxe6 11.Qd6 axb5 12.Bxb5 Ne4 13.Nxe4 Bxe4 14.O-O Rf5 15.Rd1 Qf6 16.Nd2 Rd5? 17.Nxe4 1-0

Alekhine, Alexander (1892-1946)

Winner of the first Soviet Chess Championship (1920) and the only man to die while holding the world chess championship. He learned chess from his older brother Alexei (1888-1939). He studied law at the Sorbonne but failed to get his doctorate as he claimed. He was sometimes called "Ale-and-Wine" because of his drinking habits. He married four times to women 20 to 30 years older than he. One of his wives was dubbed "Philidor's Widow." He was a prisoner of war like all the other chess contestants at an international tournament in Mannheim in 1914. In 1915 and 1916 he served in the Russian Red Cross. In 1918 he was a criminal investigator in Moscow. In 1919 he was imprisoned in the death cell at Odessa as a spy. In 1920 he was back in Moscow intending to be a movie actor. He also served as interpreter to the Communist party and was appointed secretary to the Education Department. In 1921 he married a foreign Communist delegate and left Russia for good. At the Sorbonne his thesis dealt with the Chinese prison system. In 1930 he scored the first 100% score in the Chess Olympiad, winning 9 games on board 1 for France. During World War II, he became a Nazi collaborator and declared he was ready to sacrifice his life for a Nazi Russia. He competed in seven tournaments in Germany during the war and wrote several pro-Nazi articles. During that time, Soviet players changed the name of Alekhine’s Defense to the Moscow Defense. He died in Portugal after choking on an unchewed piece of meat. He was 53. Alekhine was not buried for three weeks because no one would claim the body. The Portuguese Chess Federation took charge of the funeral. Only 10 people showed up for his funeral. The funeral was delayed for five days until the Portuguese Chess Federation raised enough money to pay for his burial. In 1956 his remains were transferred to a cemetery in Paris. FIDE provided the tombstone in the shape of a chessboard. His birth and death date on the tombstone is wrong. The tombstone reads “ALEXANDER ALEKHINE 1ST NOVEMBER 1892 25TH MARCH, 1946 CHESS WORLD CHAMPION 1927-35-37 TO THE END”. He was born on October 31, 1892 and died either on the evening of March 23rd or the morning of March 24th, 1946. He was ranked #1 in the world from 1924 to 1946.

Alekhine – De Cassio, Blindfold Simultaneous Exhibition, Portugal 1944
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Bc5 3.Bc4 Ne7 4.d3 Nbc6 5.Qh5 O-O 6.Bg5 Qe8 7.Nf3 Ng6 8.Nd5 Bb6 9.Nf6+! (9...gxf6 10.Bxf6, threatening 11.Qh6 and 12.Qg7 mate) 1-0

Alekhine – Vasic, Banja Lika 1931
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Bd3 Bxc3+ 5.bxc3 h6 6.Ba3 Nd7 7.Qe2 dxe4 8.Bxe4 Ngf6 9.Bd3 b6?? (9...c5) 10.Qxe6+! fxe6 11.Bg6 mate 1-0

Alekhine, Grace (1876-1956)

Alexander Alekhine’s fourth wife. She was born Grace Wishard on October 26, 1876 in New Jersey. Her parents were Emile Bernard Wishard (Jewish) and Marie Ida Smith. She later married Archibald Freeman, a British tea-planter in Ceylon. He died in the early 1930s. She took up chess and played Alexander Alekhine in a simultaneous exhibition in Tokyo in 1933. The two started a relationship shortly thereafter. They were married in March 1934 at Villefranche-sur-Mer, near Nice, France. The marriage certificate says her maiden name was Wishaar. She was 16 years older than Alekhine. It was his 4th marriage and may have been her 4th marriage as well. She owned a chateau in Saint Aubin-le-Cauf, a few miles southwest of Dieppe in Normandy, France. In 1936/37, she participated in a minor tournament at Hastings. Alexander Alekhine won the premier section and she took 3rd place in her section. He won 15 pounds for 1st place and she won 1 pound for 3rd place. During World War II, the Nazis took over their chateau and looted it. She moved to Paris. Alekhine was free to travel, but no exit visa was given to Grace. After World War II, she sold her chateau under American Embassy protection. She was in failing health and in her 70s. She spent her final years in her studio in Paris, but visited St. Ives, Cornwall, where she was a member of the local chess club. She later led the effort to get Alekhine’s body transferred to the Cimetiere de Montparnasse in Paris. The USSR and French Chess Federation paid to transfer the remains from Portugal to Paris. She died in March 1956. Her grave spells her maiden name as Wishar. After she died, the notes in Alekhine’s handwriting were allegedly found in her effects to prove he wrote the Nazi articles.

Alekhine’s Defense

The moves 1.e4 Nf6 were played before Alekhine (analyzed by Allgaier in 1819), but Alekhine popularized it. Alexander Alekhine first played this defense at Budapest in September 1921 against Saemisch and E. Steiner. By May 1922 it was being called the Alekhine’s Defense by Sir George Thomas in the British Chess Magazine. Also in May 1922, Hans Fahrni wrote the first monograph on the opening, calling it Die Aljechin-Verteidigung.

Alekseev, Evgeny (1985- )

Russian Grandmaster (2002). He won the Russian Junior Championship twice.

Alexander, Conel Hugh O'Donel (1909-1974)

Irish-born (Cork, Ireland) mathematician and chess International Master (1950) who won the British Championship in 1938 and 1956. During World War II he was promoted to colonel in British Intelligence and was part of the British Government Code and Cipher Code at Bletchley Park, England, along with other English chess masters who helped break the German Enigma Code. He was prohibited from traveling to any country under Soviet control or influence during his lifetime because of his association with cryptography. He was given the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his wartime services. In 1946, he won one game and lost one game against Botvinnik in the Anglo-Soviet radio match. In 1953/54, he tied for first (with Bronstein) at Hastings. He played on 6 English Olympiad teams between 1933 and 1958. In the early 1960s he gave up over-the-board chess to concentrate on correspondence chess. He was ranked #24 in the world in 1932.

Alexander – E. Brown, Cambridge 1929
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Ba5 6.d4 exd4 7.O-O d6 8.cxd4 Bb6 9.Nc3 Na5 10.Bg5 Ne7 11.Nd5 f6 12.Bxf6 gxf6 13.Nxf6+ Kf8 14.Ng5 Nxc4 15.Qh5 Ng6?? (15...Kg7) 16.Qh6+ (16...Ke7 17.Qg7 mate) 1-0

Alexandre, Aaron (1766-1850)

Author of Encyclopedie des Echecs, the first book containing the collection of all opening variations then known. Published in 1837, he introduced the algebraic notation and the castling symbols O-O and O-O-O. The rules of the game were published in four languages in this book. He also wrote Collection des Plus Beux Problems d’Echecs (The Beauties of Chess) in 1846, the first large compilation of chess problems and endgames, containing over 2,000 chess problems and solutions. He was a Jewish rabbi from Bavaria who moved to Paris in 1793. He was one of the operators of the automaton, the Turk.

Alexandria, Nana Georgievna (1949- )

Woman Grandmaster (1976) from Soviet Georgia. She was the USSR Women’s Champion in 1966 (the youngest ever), 1968, and 1969. She was Women’s World Championship Challenger in 1975 (against Gaprindashvili) and 1981 (against Chiburdanidze). She is now an administrator to the World Chess Federation (FIDE). She became the chairperson of the FIDE Women’s Committee in 1986.

Alfonsi, Petrus (1062-1120)

Physician of Alfonso VI (1030-1109) and author of the Disciplina Clericalis (Clerks Instruction). He included chess as one of the seven knightly accomplishments to be mastered. The other tasks included riding, swimming, archery, boxing, hawking, and verse writing. Alfonsi was born Moses Sephardi in Spain, but was baptized as Petrus Alfonsi at the age of 44.

Alfonso Manuscript

A 98-page manuscript ordered by Alfonso the Wise (1221-1284), King of Castile. It included chess, backgammon, and games of chance with dice. Compiled in 1283, it is entitled Juegos Diuersos de Axedrez, Dados, y Tablas con sus Explications, Ordenudos por man Dado Del Rey don Alonso el Sabio. It is the first source mentioning the pawn's double move on the first move. It also includes 103 chess problems. The manuscript was written by the monks of the monastery of St. Lorenzo del Escorial, near Madrid.

Algebraic notation

Algebraic notation is a form of chess notation by using a combination of letters and numbers (a to h horizontally and 1 to 8 vertically from the White point of view). The first use of algebraic notation is from a French manuscript written in 1173. The first use of the figurine algebraic notation occurred in Belgium in 1927. Algebraic notation was introduced in Chess Life in 1969. It wasn't until 1974 that the first book employing the algebraic notation was published by a major American publisher.

Ali, Essam Ahmed (1964-2003)

Born on March 31, 1964 in Egypt. He won the Arab Championships in 1996. In 2003, he won the Egyptian championship. He was an Egyptian International Master and Egypt’s top player, who died on October 27, 2003, of cerebral malaria after returning from the All Africa Games tournament in Abuja, Nigeria. The 60-year-old head of the Egyptian chess delegation, Mohammed Labib, died of the same disease the next day. Both were incorrectly diagnosed in Egypt after becoming ill. Both were bitten by an infected mosquito.


Title given by caliph al-Ma'mun to the top four chess players in the early ninth century. The top four players were Jabir al-Kufi, Rabrab, al-Ansari, and abu'n-Na'am. These are the first unofficial grandmasters of chess. Their endgames survive today.

All-Russian Chess Federation

First Russian chess federation, formed in 1914. It had 865 members.

al-Lajlaj (the Stammerer)

First person to analyze and publish works on the openings in 910. He was a pupil of as-Suli, the strongest player of the 10th century. His analysis was carried down from Arabic to Persian to Sanskrit to Turkish to 16th century Italian.

Allen, George (1808-1876)

The grandnephew of Ethan Allen, who wrote The Life of Philidor, Musician and Chess-Player, in 1858 and had it published in Philadelphia in 1863. He was the first to reveal how The Turk operated, in a book on the first American Chess Congress. He was a lawyer, rector of an Episcopal Church, and professor of ancient languages at Delaware College and the University of Pennsylvania. In 1832, he was married by Reverend Ralph Waldo Emerson to Mary Hancock, niece of the famous John Hancock.

Allgaier, Johann (1763-1823)

Author of the first chess book published in German, Neue theoretisch-praktische Anweisung zum Schachspiel. It was published in Vienna in 1795. He was the first operator of the Turk automaton. He operated the chess automation The Turk, when it beat Napoleon Bonaparte in 1805 in Wagrum, Austria. He served as quartermaster accountant in the Austrian Imperial army. He acted as chess tutor to the Emperor’s sons. He was considered the best chess player in Vienna. He died of dropsy, the accumulation of excessive watery fluid outside the cells of the body. The Allgaier Gambit is 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.Bc4 g4 5.Ng5. Allgaier published analysis on it in 1819.

Almasi, Zoltan (1976- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1993) at the age of 17. He has won the Hungarian championship five times. In 2000 he was ranked #23 in the world. In 1993, he won the World Junior Championship. In 2005, he became the first grandmaster to lose to a computer program in Chess960 (random chess), when he lost an exhibition match to Shredder in Germany. In 2005, he challenged Peter Svidler for the Chess 960 (Fischerandom) World Championship, but lost the match. His FIDE rating is 2619.

Aloni, Izak (1905-1985)

Izak Aloni (born Itzchak Schaechter) was Israeli champion in 1945, 1961, and 1965.

Alonso, Francisco Javier Sanz (1952- )

Spanish International Master (1977). Spanish Champion in 1973.

Alster, Ladislav (1927- )

Czech champion in 1956.


Pseudonym of Reverend John Owen (1827-1901). He wrote his chess columns under the pseudonym “Alter.”

Alterman, Boris (1970- )

Israeli Grandmaster (1992). His FIDE rating is 2562. He is an advisor to the Deep Junior chess program.

Ambrose, Jan (1954- )

Czech International Master (1980). Czech Champion in 1980.


The first mention of chess in America occurred in 1641 in Esther Singleton's history of Dutch settlers. Lewis Rau, a Huguenot minister, produced the first unpublished chess manuscript in 1733. In 1786 Benjamin Franklin issued the first published chess writing, The Morals of Chess. The first chess book by an American author appeared in Boston in 1805. The earliest surviving correspondence game in America is a game from the Washington Chess Club vs. the New York Chess Club in 1839. The first American chess tournament was held in New York in 1843. The first US championship was held in New Orleans in 1845, won by Charles Stanley.

American Chess Association (ACA)

The American Chess Association was the first national sports organization formed in the United States. It was formed at the first American Chess Congress in New York on October 6, 1857. Judge Meek was its first President. In 1874 the American Chess Association transformed into the National Chess Association.

American Chess Bulletin

Leading American chess magazine from 1904 to 1963. It was edited by Hermann Helms until 1956 and then by Edgar Holladay.

American Chess Congress

The first American Chess Congress, organized by Daniel Fiske and held in New York, was won by Paul Morphy in 1857. The top 16 American players were invited (Allison, Calthrop, Fiske, Fuller, Kennicott, Knott, Lichtenhein, Marache, Mead, Meek, Morphy, Paulsen, Perrin, Raphael, Stanley, and Thompson). First prize was $300. Morphy refused any money, but accepted a silver service consisting of a pitcher, four goblets, and a tray. Morphy’s prize was given to him by Oliver Wendell Holmes. The second American Chess Congress was held in Cleveland in 1871 and won by George Mackenzie (1st place was $100 – or $1,500 in today’s currency). There were nine players (Mackenzie, Hosmer, Elder, Judd, Ware, Smith, Harding, Johnston, and Houghton). The entry fee was $10 ($150 today). The third American Chess Congress was held in Chicago in 1874 and won by Mackenzie. There were eight players (Mackenzie, Hosmer, Judd, Bock, Elder, Perrin, Congdon, and Kennicott) and they had to pay a $20 entry fee. 1st place prize was $225. The fourth American Chess Congress (called the American Centennial Championship) was held in 1876 in Philadelphia and won by James Mason. There were 9 players (Mason, Judd, Davidson, Bird, Elson, Roberts, Ware, Barbour, and Martinez). The entry fee was $20. 1st place was $300. The fifth American Chess Congress was held in 1880 in New York and won by Mackenzie (on tiebreak over Grundy). There were 10 players. The sixth American Chess Congress was held in 1889 in New York, and won by Chigorin and Weiss. The seventh American Chess Congress was held in 1904 in St, Louis, and won by Frank Marshall.

American Chess Federation

Forerunner of the US Chess Federation (USCF). In 1935, the Western Chess Association, founded in 1900, became known as the American Chess Federation (ACF). Arpad Elo was its first President and Kirk Holland was its Vice President. In 1938, George Sturges was elected president of the ACF. The Western Open, under the Western Chess Association, became known as the American Open. Chess Review magazine became the official magazine of the ACF. In 1939 it merged with the National Chess Federation to form the USCF. The American Open became known as the U.S. Open.

American Chess Foundation (ACF)

Formed in 1955, and leading philanthropic organization in U.S. chess. Its original members were Alexander Bisno, Jacques Coe, Walter Fried, Morris Kasper, Rosser Reeves, Lessing Rosenwald, and Cecile Wertheim. It changed its named to Chess-in-the-Schools in 1986.

American Chess Magazine (ACM)

Name of a chess magazine in 1846-1847 (edited by Charles Stanley), 1872-1874, 1875, and 1897-1899. The June 1897 edition was published by William Borsodi and edited by Charles Devide. Contributors included Pillsbury, Albert Hodgesm Shipley, and Showalter. It lasted for 30 issues.

Amherst College

College located in Amherst, Massachusetts. The college chess team was the winner of the first intercollegiate chess match, in 1859. They defeated Williams College (Williamstown, Massachusetts). The event was actually an intercollegiate baseball and intercollegiate chess match simultaneously as part of a single event. The two teams met on a neutral site in Pittsfield, Massachusetts to engage in a “trial of the mind as well as the muscle.” Amherst won at both sports, and their teams were heralded as “Athletic and Academic Champions.”

Amsterdam 1964

In May-June 1964, the Interzonal tournament was held in Amsterdam with 24 players. It was a four-way tie for first place between Smyslov, Larsen, Spassky, and Tal. First place was $250. A 1959 rule was in effect, prohibiting more than three players from the same country from qualifying. Only three of the five Soviet players were allowed to be seeded into the 1965 Candidates matches. That prevented 5th place finisher Leonid Stein and 6th place finisher David Bronstein from qualifying for the Candidates tournament. This was the 2nd time Stein failed to qualify for the same reason. The 8th place finishers, Reshevsky and Portisch, played a play-off match. This was won by Portisch. Paul Keres was the runner-up in the previous Candidates, and was seeded into the 1965 Candidates matches. Mikhail Botvinnik, the loser of the last world chess championship to Petrosian, was seeded in the Candidates matches but declined to participate. His place was taken by Geller, who had finished 3rd in the previous Candidates tournament. Bobby Fischer, after winning the US Championship with a perfect score, and qualifying to play in the Interzonal, refused to play in the Interzonal. He was boycotting FIDE tournaments because he claimed the Soviets were cheating by drawing with each other. Fischer was undefeated in the last Interzonal at Stockholm. The US representatives were Reshevsky, Evans (14th place) and Benko (16th place). Each received $500 for playing in the event.

Amura, Claudia (1970- )

Woman Grandmaster from Argentina. She is the first Latin American woman to earn the male International Master title. Her FIDE rating is 2372. She is married to GM Gilberto Hernandez of Mexico.

Anand, Viswanathan (1969- )

Indian Grandmaster (1988) who won the World Junior Championship in 1987. In 1995 he played Kasparov for the world PCA championship in New York and lost after 1 win, 13 draws and 4 losses. In 1998 he lost to Karpov for the FIDE World Chess Championship. In 2000 he won the FIDE World Chess Championship held in Teheran and became the 15th official world chess champion and the first Asian to win the title. He defeated Shirov in the final match with 3 wins and 1 draw. He held the title for two years. In 2002, Ponomariov won the world FIDE championship in Moscow. He was ranked #1 in the world in November 2004. His highest rating has been 2833.

Micalizzi – Anand, Rome 1990
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Bg5 Bd7 7.Qd2 a6 8.f4 b5 9.Bxf6 gxf6 10.f5 (10.Be2) 10...h5 11.Be2 h4 12.O-O Bh6 13.Qd3 Qb6 14.Rad1 Qxd4+ (15.Qxd4 Nxd4 16.Rxd4 Be3+ 17.Kh1 Bxd4) 0-1

Ivanchuk – Anand, Reggio Emilia 1988
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.d4 d5 6.Bd3 Be7 7.O-O Nc6 8.Re1 Bg4 9.c3 f5 10.Qb3 Qd6 11.Nfd2 O-O-O 12.f3 Bh4 13.Rd1 Bh3 14.Qc2 Qg6 15.Nb3 Rhf8 16.Na3 Rde8 17.Kh1 Nf2+ 18.Rxf2 Bxg2+! 0-1

Anastasian, Ashot (1964- )

Grandmaster from Armenia. In 2005, he won the Championship of Armenia. His FIDE rating is 2595.

Andersen, Borge (1934- )

Danish International Master (1964). Danish Champion in 1958, 1967, 1968, and 1973.

Andersen, Erik (1904-1938)

Won the Danish Championship 12 times, including 8 times in a row. He was Nordic Champion in 1930.

Andersen – Censer, London 1927
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 e6 3.Bf4 c5 4.e3 Qb6 5.Qc1 Nc6 6.c3 Be7 7.Nbd2 d5 8.Bd3 O-O 9.h3 Bd7 10.O-O Rac8 11.Re1 cxd4 12.exd4 a6 13.Re3 Rfd8 14.Bc2 Qa7 15.Qd1 b5 16.Ne5 Be8 17.Rg3 Bf8 18.Bg5 Qe7 19.Ng4 Kh8 20.Nxf6 gxf6 21.Qh5 1-0

Anderson, Frank Ross (1928-1980)

Three-time Canadian Champion (1953, 1955, 1958) from Toronto and International Master (1954). In 1948 he won the U.S. Junior Championship. In 1954 and I 1958 he won the gold medal on 2nd board in the Chess Olympiad. He came closer to the Grandmaster title than any other player. In 1958 he scores 84% in the Munich Olympiad. He became ill (reaction to an incorrect prescription) and was unable to play his final round. He missed the Grandmaster title because of this. Even if he had played and lost, he would have made the final norm necessary for the Grandmaster title. He had polio and was disabled his whole life. He was a computer expert.

Anderson – Weaver Adams, St. Louis 1941
1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.Nf3 b6 4.c3 Bb7 5.Bd3 e6 6.Bf4 Ne7 7.Nbd2 d5 8.Qe2 a6 9.h4 h5 10.Ne5 Nd7 11.O-O-O c5 12.exd5 exd5 13.Rde1 cxd4? (13...Nxe5) 14.Nxf7! Kxf7 15.Qe6+ Kf8 16.Bd6 (or 16.Bxg6 Nxg6 17.Bd6+ Be7 18.Bxe7+ wins) 16...Ne5 17.Rxe5! (17...Bxe5 18.Bxg6 threatening 19.Qf7 mate) 1-0

Anderson, Gerald Frank (1893-1983)

British chess problemist, International Judge of Composition (1960), and International Master of Composition (1975). He was the last person to play Alexander Alekhine. He worked in the British Foreign Office.

Anderson, Terry

Former Associated Press correspondent that was held hostage for six years by Lebanese extremists. He credits chess with helping him survive the ordeal. He was held hostage from March 16, 1985 to December 4, 1991. He built chess sets out of aluminum foil before they allowed him to have a regular chess set.

Anderssen, Adolf (1818-1879)

Winner of the first international chess tournament (London 1851). Between 1851 and 1878 he took part in 12 chess tournaments. He was on the prize list in every one of them. He took 1st prize at London 1851, London 1862, Hanburg 1869, Barmen 1869, Baden 1870, Crefeld 1871, and Leipzig 1876. Strongest player in the world between 1859 (when Morphy retired) and 1866 (when Steinitz defeated him). In 1851 A. Anderssen was recognized as the strongest chess player in the world. That same year A. Anderson (Andrew Anderson) was recognized as the strongest checker player in the world (first world checker champion). In 1877 a group of German chess fans organized a tournament to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Anderssen's learning the chess moves. This is the only tournament in chess history organized to commemorate a competitor. He tied for second, behind Paulsen. He was a professor of mathematics when not playing chess. When he died, his obituary was 19 pages long.

Mayet – Anderssen, Berlin 1851
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Bc5 4.c3 Nf6 5.Bxc6 dxc6 6.O-O Bg4 7.h3 h5 8.hxg4 hxg4 9.Nxe5 g3 10.d4 Nxe4 11.Qg4? (11.fxg3) 11...Bxd4 12.Qxe4?? (12.Nd3) 12...Bxf2+ (13.Rxf2 Qd1+ 14.Rf1 Rh1+ 15.Kxh1 Qxf1 mate) 0-1

Anderssen – Schallopp, Berlin 1864
1.e4 e5 2.f4 d5 3.Nf3 dxe4 4.Nxe5 Bd6 5.Bc4 Bxe5 6.fxe5 Qd4 7.Qe2 Qxe5 8.d4 Qxd4 9.Nc3 Nf6 10.Be3 Qd8 11.O-O h6 12.Bc5 Nbd7 13.Qxe4+! 1-0

Andersson, Ulf (1951- )

Swedish Grandmaster (1972) who is the all-time drawing master. Against top-level opposition, he has drawn 74% of his games, winning 10%, and losing 16%. In 1984 he was the 5th highest rated player in the world. In 1996 he set a world record of playing 310 chessboards simultaneously, winning 268, drawing 40, and losing 2 games in 15 hours and 23 minutes. It is estimated he walked over 7 miles during this exhibition. In 1996 he became a Grandmaster is correspondence chess and is currently the highest rated correspondence player in the world. He was the first person to beat Karpov after Karpov became world champion in 1975.

Anderssen – Portisch, Skopje 1972
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Bb5+ Nc6 4.O-O Bd7 5.Re1 Nf6 6.c3 a6 7.Bf1 e5 8.h3 h6 9.d4 Qc7 10.a4 g6 11.Na3 Bg7 12.dxc5 dxc5 13.Nc4 Rb8 14.b4 cxb4 15.cxb4 Be6 16.Nd6+ Ke7 17.Ba3 Ne8 18.Nxb7 Qxb7 (18...Rxb7) 19.b5+ Kf6 20.bxc6 Qc7 21.Nxe5 (21...Qxe5 22.Qf3+ Bf5 23.exf5 and if 23...Qxf5 24.Be7 mate) 1-0


In the 1950s, a scientist at a Soviet research station in Antarctica who lost a chess game, killed his opponent with an axe. Chess was later banned there by the Soviets.

Anthony, Edwyn (1843-1932)

Founder (along with Lord Randolph Churchill) and President of the Oxford University Chess Club. He helped establish the annual Oxford-Cambridge chess match. In 1890, he wrote a book called Chess Telegraphic Codes. He reported on chess activities for his father’s newspaper, The Hereford Times.

Antoshin, Vladimir Sergeyevich (1929- )

Russian Grandmaster (1964) and technical designer. He has played in 5 USSR chess championships, taking 6th place in 1967. In 1960, he was USSR Correspondence Champion. In 1966, he took 1st place at the international tournament in Zinnowitz.

Hamann – Antoshin, Venice 1966
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.Nb5 d6 6.Bf4 e5 7.Be3 a6 8.N5c3 Nf6 9.Be2 Be7 10.O-O O-O 11.Nd2 b5 12.a4 b4 13.Nd5 Nxd5 14.exd5 Na5 15.f4 exf4 16.Bxf4 Bf5 17.Kh1 Bg6 18.Nf3 Bf6 19.Ra2 Bxc2 20.Qxc2 b3 0-1

Seleznev – Antoshin, USSR 1960
1.d4 f5 2.c4 Nf6 3.Nc3 d6 4.g3 c6 5.Bg2 Qc7 6.Nf3 e5 7.dxe5 dxe5 8.O-O Bb4 9.Qb3 Na6 10.e4 fxe4 11.Ng5 Bxc3 12.Qxc3 Bf5 13.Re1 Nc5 14.b4 Nd3 15.Re2 O-O 16.Nxe4 Nxe4 17.Bxe4 Bxe4 (17...Qxd3) 18.Rxe4 Nxf2 19.Rxe5 Rad8 20.c5 (20.Bb2) 20...Qf7 21.Bg5 Rd3 (22.Qc2 Qf3, threatening 23...Qh1 mate) 0-1

Antunes, Antonio (1962- )

Grandmaster from Portugal. His FIDE rating is 2496.

Apicella, Manuel (1970- )

Grandmaster from France. His FIDE rating is 2553.

Appel, Izaak (1905-1941)

Polish master. He won the Lodz City Chess Championship in 1934. He participated in several Polish championships.

Apscheneek, Fritzis (Franz Apsenieks) (1894-1941)

Latvian master. In 1924, he took 2nd place in the World Amateur Championship in Paris, behind Hermannis Mattsion of Latvia. He was the Latvian Champion in 1926-27, and in 1934. He died of pulmonary phthisis, at the age of 47.


The first references of chess in Arabic occur in 720 in romantic poems by Kutaiyira Azzata and al-Farazdaq. The Arabicized name of the Persian Chatrang became shatranj. The pieces were called Shah (king), Firz (minister or queen), Fil (elephant or bishop), Faras (horse), Rukh (chariot or boat), and Baidaq (foot-soldier).

Araiza Munoz , Jose Joaquin (1900-1971)

Won the Mexican Chess Championship 15 times in a row, from 1924 to 1949. He was a Lt. Colonel in the Mexican Army.

Soto Larrea – Araiza, Mexico 1932
1.Nf3 d5 2.c4 c6 3.e3 e6 4.b3 Bd6 5.Bb2 Nf6 6.d3 Nbd7 7.Nbd2 e5 8.cxd5 cxd5 9.g3 O-O 10.Bg2 Nc5 11.Bf1 Bf5 12.e4 dxe4 13.dxe4 Nxe4 14.Nxe4 Bxe4 15.Be2 Qa5+ 16.Kf1 Rad8 17.Kg2? (17.Qe1) 17...Bc7 18.Qc1 Nd3 19.Qc3 Nxb2 20.Qxb2 Rd2 21.b4 Rxb2 22.bxa5 Rxe2 0-1

Arakhamia-Grant, Ketevan (1968- )

Georgian Woman Grandmaster. In 1986, she was the World Women’s Under 16 Champion. She won the 1995 Women’s Interzonal at Kishinev. Her FIDE rating is 2423.

Arbakov, Valentin (1952- )

Russian Grandmaster. He was joint Moscow Champion in 1981. He is one of the strongest blitz players in the world.

Psakhis – Arbakov, Irkutsk 1983
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 b5 4.Nf3 g6 5.cxb5 a6 6.Qc2 Bg7 7.e4 O-O 8.Nc3 Bb7 9.Bf4 d6 10.Bc4 axb5 11.Nxb5 Nbd7 12.O-O Nb6 13.Be2 Nxe4 14.Qxe4 Ra4 15.Nfd4 Bxd4 16.Nxd4 Rxd4 17.Qf3 Nxd5 18.Bh6 Qa8 19.Qg3 Re8 20.b3 Ba6 21.Rfe1 Bxe2 22.Rxe2 Qa6 23.Rae1 Qxe2 0-1


The director of a tournament or match who sees that the laws of chess are strictly observed. The youngest arbiter of a major tournament was Sophia Gorman, who, at age 19, was an arbiter at the World Candidates tournament. FIDE created the International Arbiter (Judge) title in 1951. An arbiter must have a working knowledge of two official FIDE languages (English, French, German, Russian, and Spanish).

Arbues, Pedro de (1441-1484)

An Dominican member of the Spanish Inquisition, living in Aragon, who ordered victims of persecutions to stand in as figures in a game of living chess played by two blind monks. Each time they captured a piece, they condemned someone to death, usually by burning them alive. Arbues was assassinated in the Saragossa Cathedral in 1484. He was made a saint in 1867.

Ardiansyah, Herman (Haji) (1951- )

Indonesian Grandmaster (1986). He tied for 1st place at Jakarta 1986. His FIDE rating is 2409.

Arencibia Rodriguez, Walter (1967- )

Cuban Grandmaster who won the 1986 World Junior Chess Championship. He became the 2nd Cuban, after Capablanca, to hold a world chess crown.


In 1860, the first chess club in Argentina was formed. In 1921, the first Argentine Championship was held, won by Damian Reca (1894-1937). In 1927, Buenos Aires was the site of the world championship match between Capablanca and Alekhine. In 1939, Argentina staged the Chess Olympiad.

Arkell, Keith (1961- )

English Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2521. He was once married to WIM Susan Walker, who latter married GM Bogdan Lalic.

Arkhipov, Sergey (1954- )

Russian Grandmaster (1992). His FIDE rating is 2505.

Westerinen – Arkhipov, Budapest 1983
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nc3 Qh4+ 4.Ke2 Ne7 5.Nf3 Qh5 6.d4 g5 7.Kf2 d6 8.Be2 Bg7 9.Nb5 Na6 10.c3 g4 11.Ne1 Bh6 12.Kg1 Rg8 13.h3 f3 14.hxg4 f2+ 0-1

Arlauskas, Romanas (1917- )

Grandmaster of Correspondence Chess (1965). He finished 3rd in the 4th World Correspondence Championship (1962-1965). He tied for first place in the 1943 Lithuanian chess championship. He migrated from Lithuania to Australia in the late 1940s. He won the Australian championship in 1949.

Tautvaisas – Arlauskas, Augsburg 1946
1.c4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.d4 g6 4.Qb3 dxc4 5.Qxc4 Bg7 6.e4 O-O 7.Nf3 b6 8.Bf4 c5 9.dxc5 Ba6 10.Nb5 bxc5 11.Rd1 Qa5+ 12.b4 Qxb5 13.Qxb5 Bxb5 14.Bxb5 Nxe4 15.Rd3 cxb4 16.O-O Nc3 17.Bc4 Ne2+ 0-1

Armed Forces Chess

The first Armed Forces Championship in the United States took place during Armed Forces Week in May 1960, at the Lafayette Square USO in Washington DC. Tied for first place were Captain John Hudson of the U.S. Air Force and SP4 Arthur Feuerstein of the U.S. Army.

Arnason, Jon (1960- )

Icelandic grandmaster (1986). He was winner of the first World Championship for juniors under 17, in 1977 (ahead of Jay Whitehead and Kasparov). He won the championship of Iceland in 1977, at the age of 16, the youngest champion of Iceland.

Aronian, Levon (1982- )

Grandmaster from Armenia. He won the 2002 World Junior Chess Championship, held in Goa, India. He won the 2005 FIDE World Knockout Chess Championship (FIDE World Cup), held in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. He defeated Ruslan Ponomariov in the final knockout round.

Aronin, Lev (1920-1982)

Soviet International Master (1950). He played in eight Soviet championships, taking 2nd in the 18th USSR Championship in 1950. He won the Moscow Championship in 1965. His occupation was a meteorologist.

Aronin – Kantorovich, Moscow 1960
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 g6 3.c3 b6 4.d4 Bb7 5.Bc4 d5 6.exd5 Bxd5 7.Qa4+ Bc6 8.Ne5 1-0


There are at least 20 paintings called "Checkmate." The earliest known painting depicting a chess game is kept at the Cappella Palatina in Palermo, Sicily. It is dated before 1200. It shows two Arabs seated on the ground with a chessboard between them. The Chess Players, painted in 1490, was the first known painting with a chess theme. The painting resides in the Metropolitan Museum of New York. Until 1948, the painting was attributed to Francesco di Giorgio (1439-1501). Since that time the painter is thought to have been Girolamo da Cremona or Liberale da Verona.

Arulaid, Alexander (1924- )

Estonian Champion in 1948, 1955, and 1964.

Asanov, Bolat (1961- )

Grandmaster from Kazakhstan. His FIDE rating is 2449.

Ascher, Jacob (1841-1912)

Canadian Chess Champion in 1878 and 1883. He was a chess columnist for the New Dominion Monthly.

Aseev, Konstantin (1960-2004)

Russian Grandmaster. He was Leningrad Champion in 1985. His peak FIDE rating was 2591. He was the chess trainer for Maya Chiburdanidze, Nana Aleksandria, Andrei Kharlov, and Evgeny Alekseev. He played in four USSR Championships.

Asgeirsson, Asmundur

Icelandic Champion in 1931, 1933, 1934, 1944, 1945, and 1946.

Ashley, Maurice (1966- )

In 1993, he became the first African-American International Master in US history. First African-American Grandmaster (1999). He won the Marshall Chess Club Championship in 1993. In 1997, he tied for 1st in the Bermuda Open. He was born in Jamaica and coached the Harlem Raging Rooks, which won the National youth title in 1991.

Berkovich – Ashley, New York 1994
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 O-O 5.Nf3 c5 6.a3 Bxc3+ 7.Qxc3 cxd4 8.Qxd4 Nc6 9.Qh4 d5 10.b4 dxc4 11.Qxc4 e5 12.Bb2 Be6 13.Qh4 Qd5 14.Qg5 Qb3 15.Rb1 Rfd8 16.g3 (16.Qe3) 16...Nxb4 17.axb4 Ne4 18.Nd2 (18.Qxe5 Qxb4+) 18...Nxd2 19.Qxe5 f6 (20.Qc3 Nxb1) 0-1

Asmundsson, Ingvar (1934- )

Icelandic Champion in 1979.


Champion of Persia in 847 after defeating al-Aldi in the presence of the caliph Matawakkil. He wrote a book of chess problems of which two survive today.


Pseudonym of Heinrich Fraenkel (1897-1986), chess author. He wrote a weekly chess column for the New Statesman.


The Canadian Chess Association is the oldest national chess association in the world, founded in 1872. The Scottish Chess Association is the second oldest in the world, founded in 1884.

as-Suli (880-946)

Turkish player who defeated al-Mawardi, the resident master of the caliph al_Muktafi, to become the champion of the known world in the 10th century. His superiority was recognized up to Renaissance times.

Asztalos, Lajos (1889-1956)

Hungarian player and International Master (1950). He won the Hungarian championship in 1913. He was a professor of philosophy (PhD) and a journalist. From 1951 to 1956 he served as President of the Hungarian Chess Federation.

Atahualpa (1500-1533)

12th and last Inca emperor of Peru who was imprisoned by Francisco Pizarro and the Spanish conquistadors in 1533. He was imprisoned in Cajamarca, Peru and learned chess by watching his guards play, and before long was beating them all. It is said that a certain Spanish captain hated him for this and had him murdered. This information is preserved in a letter from Don Gaspar de Espinosa (1533) and the autobiography of Don Alonso Enriquez de Guzman (1518-1543).

Atalik, Suat (1964- )

First and only Turkish Grandmaster (1994). His FIDE rating is 2561.

Atkins, Henry (1872-1955)

British schoolmaster who won the British Championship 9 times out of 11 appearances, 7 times in a row (1905-1911, 1924, and 1925). Only Penrose has won it more often (10 times). In 1950 he was awarded the International Master title at the age of 78.

Atkins – Gunsberg, Hanover 1902
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.Nf3 c5 4.e3 Bg4 5.Bxc4 e6 6.Qa4+ Nd7 7.Ne5 Bf5?? (7...Nf6) 8.Nxd7 (8...Qxd7 9.Bb5) 1-0

Atwood, George (1746-1807)

English mathematician and lecturer at Cambridge. In 1776, he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of London. William Pitt, British Prime Minister, was one of Atwood’s former students. He gave Atwood a position as a personal secretary and an office in the Treasury. In the 1784, he created the Atwood machine for verifying experimentally the laws of acceleration of motion. In 1787, he joined the London Chess Club. From 1787 to 1800, he recorded his own games and the games of others, including Philidor, played at the London Chess Club. On June 20, 1795, he took part in Philidor’s last blindfold performance. Philidor played his last game of chess, against Atwood, on June 29, 1795 at the Parsloe’s Club. In 1798, he defeated Joseph Wilson in a match (3-0). In 1799, he, again, defeated Wilson in a match (3-0). When George Atwood died on July 11, 1807, he left his chess notebook to Joseph Wilson. When Wilson died in 1833, George Walker bought Atwood’s notebook. In 1835, Walker, based on Atwood’s chess notebook, wrote Selection of Games at Chess, actually played by Philidor and his Contemporaries, published in London. The book contained 47 of Philidor’s games.

Ault, Leslie (1940- )

Chess author who helped write Bobby Fischer Teaches Chess. He also wrote The Genesis of Power Chess.

Ault, Robin (1941-1994)

The first person to win the U.S. Junior Championship three times (1959-1961). The 1961 US Junior Championship was held in Dayton, Ohio. Robin Ault won on tiebreak over Bernard Zuckerman. He was invited to the 1959-60 U.S. Championship, then lost all 11 games.


The first Australian chess championship was held in Melbourne, Australia in 1885 and won by Frederick Esling (1860-1955).

Auto da Fe

Novel written by Nobel Prize winner for Literature (1981), Elias Canetti (1905-1994). It was his only work of fiction. The main character is a man named Fischer, a mad visionary, who dreams of becoming world chess champion and buying clothes from the best tailors in the world. The book was written in 1935. The book was translated into English, entitled Tower of Babel.


Machines that give the illusion of playing chess. The first automaton was Wolfgang von Kempelen's The Turk (1769), followed by Hooper's Ajeeb (1868), then Gumpel's Mephisto (1878).

Averbakh, Yuri (1922- )

Endgame expert and grandmaster (1952). He was the Soviet Chess Federation president from 1972 to 1977. His daughter married Grandmaster Mark Taimanov. He was the editor of the principal Soviet chess magazine, Schachmatny v SSSR. He played in the USSR Championship 15 times between 1949 and 1969. In 1954 he won the USSR championship and in 1956 tied for first place with Spassky and Taimanov. He has been chief arbiter at many chess Olympiads.

Averbakh – Estrin, Moscow 1964
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 dxc4 5.Bg5 Bb4 6.e4 c5 7.Bxc4 cxd4 8.Nxd4 Qc7 9.Qb3 Bxc3+ 10.Qxc3 Nxe4 11.Nb5 Qc5 12.Qxg7 Rf8 13.Bh6 Qxf2+? (13...Nd7) 14.Kd1 Nd7 15.Re1 Nef6 16.Bxe6 Qxb2 17.Rc1 (17...Qxb5 18.Bc4+) 1-0


Algemeene Veerenigde Radio Oemrop (AVRO), a Dutch broadcasting company, which sponsored the world's strongest tournament held up to that time from November 5th to the 27th of November, 1938. The top eight players in the world participated (Keres, Fine, Botvinnik, Alekhine, Reshevsky, Euwe, Capablanca, and Flohr). First place was equivalent to $550 (shared by Fine and Keres). Alekhine, for the first time in his life, came ahead of Capablanca. Capablanca, for the first time in his life, fell below 50%. He lost four games in this event. Flohr, the official challenger who was expected to play a world championship match with Alekhine, came last without a single victory in 14 rounds. Each round was played in a different Dutch city that rotated between Amsterdam, The Hague, Rotterdam, Groningen, Zwolle, Haarlem, Utrecht, Arnhem, Breda, and Leiden.

Avrukh, Boris (1978- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2652.


The Spanish word for chess. The Portuguese player Damiano wrote a Spanish book suggesting chess was invented by Xerxes and should be named after Xerxes, hence, the word Axedrez.

Azmaiparashvili, Zurab (1960- )

Grandmaster (1988) from Soviet Georgia. In 1978 he became junior champion of the USSR. He was Garry Kasparov’s trainer from 1987 to 1993. In 1990 he was elected president of the Georgian chess federation. He is the highest rated player from Georgia.

Stangl – Azmaiparashvili, Tilburg 1994
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.Bg5 Bg7 4.c3 c5 5.dxc5 Ne4 6.Be3 O-O 7.Bd4 d5 8.cxd6 Qxd6 9.Nbd2 Nf6 10.e4 Qc7 11.Be2 Nc6 12.O-O Rd8 13.Qb1 Bh6 14.Nc4 Nh5 15.Be3 Nf4 16.Bxf4 Bxf4 17.Ne3 Be6 18.Bc4 Bxc4 19.Nxc4 b5 20.Na3 Ne5 21.Nxb5? (21.Nxe5) 21...Nxf3+ 22.gxf3 Qd7 (23.Nd4 Qh3 24.Rd1 Bxh2+ 25.Kh1 Bg3+ 26.Kg1 Qh2+ 27.Kf1 Qxf2 mate) 1-0

Babula, Vlastimil (1973- )

Grandmaster from the Czech Republic. His FIDE rating is 2604.

Baburin, Alexander (1967 – )

Russian player who moved to Ireland in 1993 and became a Grandmaster in 1996. He won the 1999 Mind Sports Olympiad in London and the 2000 National Open in Las Vegas. He edits the electronic newsletter, Coffer Break Chess.

Stefansson – Baburin, Budapest 1991
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.Nf3 a6 4.a4 Nf6 5.e3 Bg4 6.Bxc4 e6 7.h3 Bh5 8.Nc3 Nc6 9.O-O Bb4 10.g4 Bg6 11.Nh4 Bxc3 12.bxc3 Ne4 13.Nxg6 hxg6 14.Kg2 Qh4 15.Qf3 O-O-O 16.Rh1 f5 17.Bxe6+ Kb8 18.gxf5 Rh5 19.Qf4 Rg5+ 20.Kf3?? (20.Kf1) 20...Qxf2+ 21.Kxe4 Qc2+ (22.Kf3 Qg2 mate) 0-1

Bachmann, Ludwig (1856-1937)

German author and chronicler of chess. He worked for the Bavarian railway. In his spare time, he collected information on chess events and put them in yearbooks (Schach-Juhrbuch), from 1891 to 1930. His nickname was the ‘Chess Herodotus’. He was the first person to issue a yearbook on chess.

Bacrot, Etienne (1983- )

Youngest FIDE master at age 10. He won the World under 12 championship in Brazil in 1995. In March 1997, Bacrot become the youngest Grandmaster in history at the age of 14 years and 2 months. The record was previously held by Peter Leko (14 years, 4 months). Bacrot’s record was then beaten in December 1997 by Ruslan Ponomariov (14 years, 17 days).

Bacrot – Alexandria, Biel 1995
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 b6 3.Nf3 Bb7 4.g3 g6 5.Bg2 Bg7 6.O-O O-O 7.d5 b5 8.Qb3 Qc8 9.Qxb5 c6 10.dxc6 Bxc6 11.Qa5 Qb7 12.Nc3 Na6 13.Rd1 Rfc8 14.Rb1 Nc5? (14...d6) 15.Qxc5 Ne4 16.Nxe4 Bxe4 17.Qxe7 Re8 18.Qd6 Bxb1 19.Nd2 Qb8 20.Nxb1 Rxe2 21.Qd5 (21...Re8 22.Qxa8 Qxa8 23.Rxa8 Rxd7) 1-0

Baden-Baden 1870

First international tournament in Germany and the first to be interrupted by war (Franco-Prussian war). First place was 3,000 francs. This tournament was the first to introduce chess clocks (20 moves per hour), but the players had the option of using hourglasses. Adolf Anderssen won the event with 11 points, followed by Steinitz with 10 ½ points.

Baden-Baden 1925

First international tournament in Germany after World War I. Alekhine was the winner, with 16 points, followed by Rubinstein with 14 ½ points.

Bagirov, Vladimir (1936-2000)

Russian Grandmaster (1978) who competed in nine Soviet championships between 1960 and 1978. His best result was 4th place in 1960. He became a Grandmaster in 1978 at the age of 42. In 1998 he won the 8th World Senior Chess Championship, held in Austria. He helped train Tal and Kasparov. He died of a heart attack while playing in a chess tournament in Finland. He had just finished a move while in time pressure and his flag fell. As both players moved to a separate board to reconstruct the game, he collapsed and died.

Buhman – Bagirov, USSR 1970
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e4 e5 4.Nf3 exd4 5.Nxd4 Bc5 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Qa4+ Nbd7 8.Nc3 O-O 9.Qxc4 Ng4 10.Qe2 Nxe3 11.Qxe3 Nf6 12.Rd1 Ng4 13.Qd2 Qf6 14.f3 (14.Na4) 14...Rd8 15.Nd5 Rxd5! 16.exd5 Qe5+ 17.Be2 Ne3 18.Kf2 Nf5 (19.f4 Qxd5 and 20...Bxd4) 0-1

Bagley, Clarence (1843-1932)

First chess champion of Washington State (Washington territory). He was chess champion of Washington territory from 1862 to 1875. He lived in Seattle. He was a printer, newspaper and magazine publisher, writer, historian, and founder of the Washington State Historical Society.


Philippine city that hosted the 1978 World Championship match between Karpov and Korchnoi. No flags were present because Korchnoi had defected from the Soviet Union and was “stateless” and had no flag to represent. The national anthem for both players was supposed to be played. The orchestra did not know the Soviet national anthem and played something else. Since Korchnoi did not represent any country, the orchestra played Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. On the morning of the match, it was discovered there was not a single “Staunton” design chess set in the city. Someone drove 150 miles to Manila to buy a Staunton chess set for the world chess championship. It arrived 15 minutes before the scheduled first game.

Bain, Mary Weiser (1904-1972)

1937 challenger to the World’s Women Championship (she was born in Hungary). She won titles in Cuba, Sweden, Finland, and the United States. U.S. women’s champion from 1951 to 1953. She was a pupil of Frank Marshall and Geza Maroczy. She was a Bridge expert and operated a duplicate-bridge club in New York.

Baird, David Graham (1854- )

Charter member of the chess club that eventually evolved in the Manhattan Chess Club. In 1880, he tied for 2nd place in the minor section of the 5th American Chess Congress in New York. In 1883, he took 2nd place in the 5th Manhattan Chess Club championship, behind Gustave Simonson. In 1889, he was a participant in the 6th American Chess Congress in New York and took 11th place. In 1890, he won the Manhattan Chess Club championship. In 1895, he won the New York state championship. He was the younger brother of John Washington Baird.

Baird, Edith Helen (1859-1924)

She was born Winter Wood. She was the most famous female chess composer. She published her problems using the name “Mrs. W.J. Baird. She composed over 2,000 problems. In 1902, she wrote : 700 Chess Problems.

Baird, John Washington (1852- )

Charter member of the chess club that eventually evolved in the Manhattan Chess Club. In 1889, he participated in the 6th American Congress in New York and took 19th place out of 20. He was an umpire for Steinitz and signed the contract for the Steinitz-Lasker world championship match. He was the older brother of David Graham Baird.

Bakker, Ineke ( -2003)

Former FIDE General Secretary from 1972 to 1982. When Florencio Campomanes was elected FIDE President, she resigned. She was appointed Honorary Member of FIDE by its general assembly.

Bakulin, Nikolac (1926- )

Moscow champion in 1961, 1964 and 1966. He took last place in the 32nd USSR Championship in 1964-65.

Balanel, Ion (1926- )

Romanian International Master (1954). Romanian Champion in 1950, 1953, 1955, and 1958.

Balashov, Yuri (1949- )

Russian Grandmaster (1973) from Moscow. He won the Moscow championship in 1970. He played in 15 Russian championships, taking 2nd place in 1976 (behind Karpov). In 1978, he served as second for Karpov at the world championship match with Korchnoi in Baguio, Philippines. In 1985 he withdrew from the Taxco Interzonal Tournament after 11 rounds. He had won one game, drew 7 games, and lost 3 games at the time. He ended up in last place. In 1992, he served as second for Boris Spassky during his match with Bobby Fischer.

Balashov – Beszterczey, Poland 1992
1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.Nc3 d6 4.Nf3 Bg4 5.Be2 Nc6 6.Be3 e5 7.d5 Nce7 8.Ng5 Bd7 9.f4 exf4 10.Bxf4 h6 11.Nf3 g5 12.Be3 Ng6 13.Bd4 Nf6 14.e5 dxe5 15.Nxe5 Nxe5 16.Bxe5 O-O 17.O-O Ne4?? (17...Ne8) 18.Bxg7 (18...Kxg7 19.Nxe4; 18...Nxc3 19.Bxc3) 1-0

Balcarek, Wiktor (1915- )

Polish Champion in 1950.

Balcerowski, Witold (1935- )

Polish Champion in 1962 and 1965.

Balinas, Rosendo (1941-1998)

Philippine lawyer and Grandmaster (1976) who was Asia’s best player in the 1960s. He won the Philippine chess championship 6 times. In 1976 he won an international tournament in the USSR (Odessa). It was only the second time in 35 years that a foreigner won an international event in the USSR. The only other foreigner who won in Russia was world champion Capablanca. He died of liver cancer.

Krause – Balinas, Dortmund 1976
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.d4 e4 5.Ng5 Bb4 6.d5 Na5 7.Qa4 Qe7 8.a3 Bxc3+ 9.bxc3 b6 10.Nh3 Qc5 11.Qb4 Nxc4 12.e3 Ba6 13.a4 (13.Qxc5) 13...Nxd5 14.Qxc5 bxc5 15.Bd2 Rb8 16.Ng5 f5 17.f3 h6 18.fxe3 Ndxe3 (19.Bxe3 Nxe3 20.Bxa6 Nc2+) 0-1

Balla, Zoltan von (1883-1945)

First official Hungarian chess champion (Budapest, 1913). He was Hungarian champion in 1906 and 1911. He died in Budapest at the end of World War II.

Von Balla – Ritzen, 1914
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Bc5 4.O-O Nge7 5.c3 f5 6.d4 Bb6 7.d5 fxe4 8.Ng5 Nb8 9.Ne6 1-0


The first ballet with a chess theme was Ballet des Echecs, performed for Louis XIV (1638-1715) of France. A ballet called Checkmate, composed by Sir Arthur Bliss and choreographed by Ninette de Valois in 1937, was performed at the Paris World Exhibition. The first ballet on ice was included in the pantomime, Sinbad the Sailer (1953), where skaters played out the Morphy – Duke of Brunswick game. In 1986 the musical Chess, by Tim Rice, was produced. In 2002, a chess ballet opened the Chess Olympiad in Bled, Slovenia.

Balogh, Csaba (1987- )

Grandmaster from Hungary. His FIDE rating is 2537.

Bana Bhatta (595-655)

One of the foremost poets of India. His two most important works are Harsacarita (Deeds of Harsa) and Kadambari, which is a romantic love story. Both were written in Sanskrit. Both works mentioned Chaturanga, an early form of chess.

Banikas, Hristos (1978- )

Grandmaster from Greece. His FIDE rating is 2548.

Banks, Newell (1887-1977)

U.S. checker champion who was also a chess master. He defeated the U.S. chess champion, Frank Marshall, and he leading challenger, Isaac Kashdan, at the Chicago Tournament in 1926. In his lifetime he traveled over a million miles playing chess and checkers and played over 600,000 games of chess and checkers. He was considered the world’s best checker player from 1917 to 1922 and 1933-1934.

Jordan – Banks, USA 1917
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nd4 4.Nxe5 Qg5 5.Nxf7?? Qxg2 6.Rf1 Qxe4 7.Be2 Nf3 mate 0-1

Baragar, Fletcher (1955- )

Canadian FIDE Master from Manitoba. In 1987, he took last place at the Zagreb Interzonal. He won 1 game, drew 1 game, and lost 14 games.

Barasz, Zsigmond (1877-1935)

Hungarian Champion (with Zoltan Von Balla) in 1911.

Barbero, Gerardo (1961-2001)

Argentine Grandmaster (1988) who died of eye cancer. He was Argentine champion in 1984. He won at Montpellier 1986 and at Prokupje in 1987. He also won the Kecskemet Open in 1987.

Barbero – Aalto, Argentina 1993
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4 exf4 4.Nf3 g5 5.d4 g4 6.Bc4 gxf3 7.O-O d5 8.exd5 Bg4 9.Qd2 Na5 10.Bb5+ c6 11.Qxf4 Qd7 (11...Nf6) 12.Qe5+ Ne7 13.Ne4 O-O-O?? (13...fxg2) 14.Bf4 (threatening 15.Qb8 mate) 1-0

Barcza, Gideon (1911-1986)

Hungarian professor of mathematics and Grandmaster (1954). He won the Hungarian championship eight times. He was editor of the chess magazine Magyar Sakkelet. He played on seven Hungarian Olympiad teams. The opening 1.Nf3 d5 2.g3 is called the Barcza System.

Kiss – Barcza, Debrecen 1930
1.e4 Nc6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.Nf3 Bg4 5.Nc3 Bxf3 6.Nxd5 Bxd1 7.Nxc7+ Kd7 8.Nxa8 Bxc2 9.Bf4 e5 10.dxe5 Bb4+ 11.Ke2 Nge7 12.e6+ fxe6 13.Nc7?? (13.Nb6+) 13...Nd4+ 14.Ke3 Nef5 mate 0-1

Barczay, Laszlo (1936- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1967) and Correspondence Grandmaster (1979). He took 17th place in the 1967 Sousse Interzonal. He took 1st place at the 1967 Asztalos Memorial, 1st at Polanica Zdroj 1969, and 1st at Astor 1982.

Barda, Olaf (1909-1971)

Norwegian International Master (1952) and Correspondence Grandmaster (1953). He won the Norwegian championship six times (1930, 1947, 1948, 1952, 1953, 1957). He took 4th in the first World Correspondence chess championship (1950-1953).

Bardeleben, Curt von (1861-1924)

Strongest German player of the late 19th century, openings expert, and player of Grandmaster strength. Against Steinitz, he had a losing position, so he just got up and left the playing hall without resigning and did not return. Steinitz had to sit and watch the clock to end the game. Bardeleben did leave a note on the table that said, “Saw it, went home,” referring to Steinitz’s combination. Bardeleben was in the habit of leaving the tournament room, allowing his clock to run out of time, rather than resign. He committed suicide at the age of 62 by jumping out of an upper window of his boarding house in Berlin where he lived in poverty. He was a lawyer.

Barden, Leonard (1929- )

British Champion (with Alan Phillips) in 1954. He played on four English Olympiad teams. He has written a chess column for the Guardian since 1956. He has written several chess books.

Bareev, Evgeny (1966- )

Russian Grandmaster (1989) who was World Under 16 Champion in 1982. In 1999 he was ranked 3rd in the world, behind Kasparov and Karpov.

Bareev – Yakovich, Tallinn 1986
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 a6 5.e4 b5 6.e5 Nd5 7.a4 Nxc3 8.bxc3 Qd5 9.g3 Be6 10.Bg2 Qb7 11.O-O Bd5 12.e6 Bxe6 13.Ng5 Bd5 14.Bxd5 Qxd5 15.axb5 e6 16.Re1 Nd7 (16...axb5) 17.Qh5 g6?? (17...e5) 18.Nxe6! (18...gxh5 19.Ng7+ Kd8 20.Re8 mate; 18...c6 19.Nc7+ Kd8 20.b6! Nxb6 21.Nxd5 gxh5 22.Bg5+ Kc8 23.Nxb6+) 1-0

Barendregt, Johan (1924- )

Dutch International Master (1962). He was a medical doctor and lectured in clinical psychology at the University of Amsterdam. He died of lung cancer.

Barker, Malcolm N.

Malcolm Barker was British Under-18 chess champion in 1949, 1950, and 1951. In the first World Junior Chess Championship, he took 2nd place, behind Boris Ivkov, and ahead of Bent Larsen and Friderick Olafsson. After the tournament, he gave up chess and took up bridge.

Barlov, Dragan (1957- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1986). He won the Yugoslav championship in 1986. He took 15th place at the 1987 Zagreb Interzonal.

Benjamin – Barlov, Hallsberg 1975
1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.c4 Nb6 5.exd6 exd6 6.h3 Be7 7.Nf3 O-O 8.Be3 Bf5 9.Nc3 Nc6 10.Be2 d5 11.b3 Bb4 12.Qc1 dxc4 13.Bxc4 Nxc4 14.bxc4 Bd3 15.a3 Ba5 16.c5 Re8 17.Kd1 b6 18.cxb6 cxb6 19.Ra2 Bc4 20.Rd2 Bb3+ 21.Ke2 Qc8 22.Kf1 Ne7 23.Rb2 Bxc3 24.Rxb3 Qc4+ 0-1

Barnes, Thomas Wilson (1825-1874)

One of the strongest English players in the 1850s. He scored more wins than anyone else against Paul Morphy, defeating him 8 times. He went on a diet and lost 130 pounds in 10 months, causing his death.

Barnes – Owen, London 1857
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Ba5 6.d4 exd4 7.Qb3 Qf6 8.O-O Nh6 9.e5 Qg6 10.Ba3 dxc3 11.Nxc3 Bxc3 12.Qxc3 b6? (12...Nf5) 13.e6 fxe6 14.Bxe6 Bb7 15.Nh4 Qf6 16.Bxd7+ Kxd7 17.Qh3+ Kd8 18.Rfe1 Re8 19.Rad1+ Nd4 20.Rxd4+ Qxd4 21.Rxe8+ Kxe8 22.Qe6+ (22...Kd8 23.Ba7+ Ke8 24.Bd6+ Kd8 25.Qe7 mate) 1-0

Barry, Denis (1929-2003)

Former President of the U.S. Chess Federation (1993-1996). He organized the U.S. Open in Atlantic City in 1972 and in Somerset, New Jersey in 1986. He established the US Amateur Team East Chess Championship, which is held annually in Parsippany, New Jersey. He was the captain and guide for the US Blind Team in three Blind Chess Olympiads. He organized the third USCF Blind Championship in 1977, and was the first to use Braille wallcharts at that tournament.

Barua, Dibyendu (1966- )

Grandmaster from India. He was India’s first chess prodigy. He became India’s 2nd grandmaster, after Anand.

Basman, Michael (1946- )

International Master (1980) from England who specializes in irregular openings. He tied for 1st place in the 1973 British Championship, but lost the playoff to Bill Hartston. He organizes the British Chess Challenge, which is probably the largest chess tournament in the world, with 35,000 school children participating.

Basman – NN, Paris 1982
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Qe2 Nc6 4.c3 d6 5.d4 Qh4+ 6.Kd1 g5 7.Nf3 Qh5 8.Qb5 g4 9.Qxh5 1-0

Battell, Jack Straley (1909-1985)

Former USCF correspondence chess director (1969-1978). In the 1937-38 Marshall Chess Club Championship, he scored no wins and 11 straight losses, for the worse score in Marshall Chess Club history. In 1946 he was the highest rated postal player in the United States and won the 1946 Correspondence Chess League of America (CCLA) championship. He was a photographer, English teacher, riding master, and restaurant manager. He died of complications of Alzheimer’s disease.

Bauer, Christian (1977- )

French Grandmaster (1997). His FIDE rating is 2641. In 1977, he won the French championship.

Bauer, Johann (1861-1891)

Czech master. In 1887, he won a tournament in Frankfurt to earn the master tile played in the German Hauptturnier. He died of tuberculosis.

Baumbach, Friedrich (Fritz) (1935- )

German correspondence player who won the 11th World Correspondence Championship, which ended in 1989. In 1970 he won the East German championship. He was awarded the Correspondence Grandmaster title in 1973. He is a chemist and a Ph.D.


British Chess Federation, founded in 1904.

Beauharnois, Eugene (1781-1824)

Stepson of Napoleon and Prince and Viceroy of Italy. He purchased the Turk from Maelzel for 30,000 francs (equivalent to $60,000) in 1811. The Prince stored it at his residence in Milan. He sold the Turk back to Maelzel in 1817 for the same price.


In 1966 the U.S. Open was held at the Seattle World's Fair Grounds. The Beatles were on hand to give a concert. At the Open the tournament director drew the curtains over the playing hall. The hundreds of Beatle fans, seeing the hall shrouded by the drapes, assumed the Beatles were inside. They began pounding on the windows until someone opened the drapes to reveal a chess tournament was taking place. Ringo Starr and John Lennon played chess. Yoko Ono also plays chess.

Becker, Georg Albert (1896-1984)

International Master (1953). He played for Austria (1931), then Germany (1939), on their chess Olympiad team. He was editor of Wiener Schachzeitung from 1926 to 1935. He settled in Argentina after the outbreak of World War II. In 1929 at Carlsbad , Becker said “I propose to open the Vera Menchik Club, whose members will be solely masters defeated by the lady world champion.” Before the tournament at Carlsbad in which Menchik was playing, he said that he would go onstage as a ballerina if Menchik scored more than 3 points. At Carlsbad (won by Nimzovich), she finished last with 2 wins, 2 draws (3 points) and 17 losses. She beat Becker (the first member of the Vera Menchik Club) and Saemisch. He was Austrian champion in 1925.

Becker – Norman-Hansen, Munich 1936
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.Nf3 Ngf6 6.Bd3 Nxe4 7.Bxe4 Nf6 8.Bd3 Be7 9.Qe2 O-O 10.Bg5 g6 11.Bxf6 Bxf6 12.Qe4 1-0

Bednarski, Jacek (1939- )

Polish International Master (1964). Polish Champion in 1963.

Beechey-Rowland, Frideswide (1843-1919)

First woman to a chess column and the first woman to win a prize as a composer of chess problems (1882). She authored a book called Chess Blossoms in 1883 and Chess Fruits in 1884.

Begin, Menachem (1913-1992)

Former Prime Minister of Israel (1977-1983) and Nobel Peace Prize recipient who played chess every day when he was imprisoned by the British and the Russians. He said chess helped him keep his mental powers in shape. In 1940, he was playing chess at home with his wife when Russian troops (NKVD) burst in to arrest him. As he was being dragged away, he called out to his wife that he was resigning his game to her. While at Camp David in 1978, he played chess regularly with National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzesinski.

Beim, Valery (1950- )

Grandmaster originally from Russian and now living in Austria. His FIDE rating is 2534. He is the author of Chess Recipies from the Grandmaster’s Kitchen.

Beim – Wagman, Aosta 1990
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e4 c5 4.d5 e6 5.Nc3 Nf6 6.Bxc4 exd5 7.Nxd5 Nxd5 8.Bxd5 Be7 9.Nf3 O-O 10.O-O Nd7 11.Qe2 Qc7 12.e5 Nb6 13.Be4 Be6 14.Re1 Rae8 15.Ng5 Bxg5 16.Bxg5 Bd5 17.Bxh7+ Kxh7 18.Qh5+ Kg8 19.Bf6 1-0

Belakovskaia, Anjelina (1969- )

Woman Grandmaster (1993). U.S. Women’s Chess Champion in 1995 (with Sharon Burtman), 1996, and 1999. She was born in the Ukraine and won the Women’s Championship of the Soviet Union and the Ukraine. She has a Master’s Degree in Mathematics.. She came to the USA in 1991. She had a bit role in the movie “Searching for Bobby Fischer.” She won the New York Women’s Chess Championship three times. She played on the US women’s team in the Chess Olympiads in 1994, 1996, and 1998. She is now a real estate agent in Arizona.

Heaton – Belakovskaia, Las Vegas 1995
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.c4 Bg7 4.g3 O-O 5.Bg2 c5 6.O-O cxd4 7.Nxd4 Nc6 8.Nc2 d6 9.Nc3 Be6 10.b3 Qd7 11.Re1 Bh3 12.Bh1 Ng4 13.Bb2 Qf5 14.f3 Qxc2 15.Qxc2 Bd4+ 16.e3 Nxe3 17.Qf2 (17.Qe4) 17...Nc2 18.Qxd4 N6xd4 19.Rxe7 Nxa1 20.Nd5? (20.Bxa1) 20...Nac2 21.g4 Rfe8 (22.Nf6+ Kf8 23.Rxe8+ Rxe8 24.Nxe8 Kxe8) 0-1

Belavenets, Sergey (1910-1942)

Chess champion of Moscow in 1932, 1937, and 1938. He won the Russian championship in 1934 and took 3rd in the USSR Championship in 1939. He died in the siege of Leningrad. His daughter, Ludmilla (born in 1940), won the 4th Women’s World Correspondence Chess Championship in 1992.

Freymann – Belavenets, Kiev 1938
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.c4 e5 4.Nc3 Nc6 5.h3 g6 6.d3 Bg7 7.Nd5 f6 8.Be3 Nh6 9.Qd2 Nf7 10.Be2 Be6 11.h4 h5 12.Bd1 a6 13.Ba4 Rb8 14.b4 b5 15.Bb3 Bxd5 16.exd5 Nd4 17.Bxd4 cxd4 18.a4 Bh6 19.Qe2 O-O 20.O-O f5 21.axb5 axb5 22.c5 Re8 23.g3 Qf6 24.Rfd1 e4 25.dxe4 d3 26.Qa2 fxe4 0-1

Belgrade GMA 1989

The Belgrade Grandmaster's Association 1989 tournament had 98 grandmasters participating, a world record for number of GMs in one tournament. This was the strongest Swiss of all time. The tournament was funded by Yugoslav Airlines with $100,000 prize fund. The winner was Yugoslav GM Krunoslav Hulak.

Beliavsky, Alexander (1953- )

Grandmaster (1975) from Slovenia who won the World Junior Championship in 1973, held in Teesside, England. In 1973 he took last place in the USSR championship. The next year, he won it. He tied for first place (with Tal) at the USSR Championship in 1974, and won the USSR Championship in 1990. In 1983, he lost against Kasparov in the quarterfinals for the World Championship. In 1997 he lost to Nigel Short in the FIDE world championship knockout matches.

Beliavsky – Stean, Lucerne 1982
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Qb6 8.Qd2 Qxb2 9.Nb3 Nbd7 10.Bd3 b5 11.O-O Nc5? (11...b4) 12.Nxc5 dxc5 13.Bxf6 gxf6 14.Rab1 Qa3 15.Nxb5! (15...axb5 16.Bxb5+ Ke7 17.Rfd1, threatening 18.Qd6 mate; 15...Qxa2 16.Nc7+ Ke7 17.Nxa8) 1-0

Belkhodja, Slim

Grandmaster from Tunisia. He is Tunisia’s 2nd grandmaster, after Bouaziz.


In 1980, BELLE won the World Computer Chess Championship in Linz, running on a PDP 11/23. In 1981, BELLE won the 12th annual North American Computer Championship. Ken Thompson and Joe Condon, both of Bell Labs, created BELLE. In 1982 Ken Thompson traveled to Moscow and thought BELLE was traveling with him in a crate to compete in a tournament. However, the U.S. Customs Service confiscated the chess computer at Kennedy Airport as part of Operation Exodus, a program to prevent illegal export of high technology items to the Soviets. It took over a month and a $600 fine to retrieve BELLE from customs. In 1983 BELLE became the first computer to gain an established master’s rating.

Bellin, Jana Malypetrova Hartston Miles (1947- )

Top British woman player. She is also an anesthesiologist who she says is an appropriate specialization for a chess player – "it's like time trouble, you only have four minutes." Formerly married to Bill Hartston and Tony Miles, top British chess players.

Bellin, Robert (1952- )

British International Master (1977) and British Champion in 1979. He is married to Dr. Jana Malypetrova (Hartston Miles Bellin).

Bellon Lopez, Juan Manuel (1950- )

Spanish Grandmaster (1978). He was Spanish Champion in 1969, 1971, 1974, 1977, and 1984. He is married to Grandmaster Pia Cramling from Sweden.

Bellon – Ljubojevic, Palma de Mallorca 1972
1.b3 e5 2.Bb2 Nc6 3.e3 g6 4.d4 exd4 5.Nf3 Bg7 6.Nxd4 Nf6 7.Nxc6 bxc6 8.Be2 O-O 9.Nd2 a5 10.a4 Re8 11.O-O Nd5 12.Bxg7 Kxg7 13.Bd3 Nc3 14.Qf3 Ba6 15.Bxa6 Rxa6 16.e4 Qf6 17.Qd3 Raa8 18.f4 1-0

Benedict, Clare (1871-1961)

Granddaughter of James Fenimore Cooper who moved to Switzerland and became a chess patroness of a team tournament of European countries. The first Clare Benedict International Team Tournament was held in 1953 and won by the Dutch.

Benjamin, Joel (1964- )

Winner of the National Elementary (1976), Junior High School (1978), and High School Championships (1980-81), U.S. Junior Championship (1980, 1982), U.S. Open Championship (1985), and U.S. Championship (1987, 1997). He is the editor of CHESS CHOW, a monthly chess magazine. He defeated his first master at age 11 and was the first 11-year old U.S. Expert. At 13 years and 3 months, he broke Bobby Fischer’s record (13 years, 5 months) for becoming the youngest U.S. master up to that time. He was the youngest Manhattan Chess Club champion at 14, and became a Grandmaster in 1986. He assisted the IBM DEEP BLUE team that helped defeat Garry Kasparov in the DEEP BLUE computer vs. Kasparov chess match in April, 1997.

Benjamin – Gamboa, Philadelphia 1995
1.c4 e6 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.e4 d5 4.e5 d4 5.exf6 dxc3 6.bxc3 Qxf6 7.Nf3 c5 8.Bd3 Bd7 9.Be4 Bc6 10.Qe2 Bxe4 11.Qxe4 Nc6 12.Rb1 O-O-O 13.d4 Rd7 14.Bf4 Qg6?? (14.Bd6) 15.Qxc6+! (15...bxc6 16.Rb8 mate) 1-0

Benko, Pal (1928- )

French-born Hungarian player who won the Hungarian national championship in 1948 at the age of 20. He was secretly involved in the 1956 Hungarian revolt. He spent a year and a half in a Hungarian political prison. The Hungarian Secret Police once suspected he was a spy because of his coded letters. The coded letters were correspondence chess games and the code was chess notation. He was permitted to play first board on Hungary's team in the 1957 Student Olympiad in Iceland where he defected to the U.S. He became a Grandmaster in 1958. In 1965 he was the first American Open Champion. In 1970 he yielded his interzonal place at Palma de Mallorca to Bobby Fischer, who went on to become World Champion. He has won or tied for first place in eight US Open tournaments. His book, Pal Benko My Life, Games and Compositions won the 2004 British Chess Federation Book of the Year.

Benko – Sawyer, New York 1964
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nge7 4.c3 a6 5.Bc4 h6 6.d4 d6 (6...b5) 7.Qb3 Na5?? (7...d5) 8.Bxf7+ Kd7 9.Nxe5+! (9...dxe5 10.Qe6 mate) 1-0

Benoni Defense

The opening name after 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5. It was first analyzed by Aaron Reinganum in 1825, who called ii Ben-Oni (child of my tears, in Hebrew). His book was Ben-Oni oder die Vertheidigungen die Gambitzüge im Schach.

Berdichevski, Igor (1964- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating in 2546.

Berend, Elvira (1965- )

Woman Grandmaster from Luxembourg. Her FIDE rating is 2350.

Berg, Emanuel (1981- )

Grandmaster from Sweden. His FIDE rating is 2539.

Berger, Johann (1845-1933)

Chess master, author, and educator from Graz. In 1870 he won the first major tournament in the Austro-Hungarian Empire. In 1873 he helped create the Sonnenborn-Berger tie-breaking system (first used in 1882). In 1886 he won the world championship chess problem-solving contest. He played in a correspondence chess tournament sponsored by Monde Illustre from 1889 to 1992 and won it with 45 wins, 3 losses and no draws. From 1898 to 1911 he was editor of Deutsche Schachzeitlung. In 1890 he wrote Theorie und Praxis der Endspiele and revised it in 1922. He also wrote Probleme, Studien und Partien 1862-1912. He was an Austrian high school administrator.

J. Berger – Froelich, Graz 1922
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 d6 4.Bb5 Bg4 5.Nd5 Nge7 6.c3 a6 7.Ba4 b5 8.Bb3 Na5 9.Nxe5 Bxd1?? 10.Nf6+ gxf6 11.Bxf7 mate 1-0

Bergkvist, Nils Valentin (1900-1993)

Former Stockholm City Chess Champion. He played on the Swedish Chess Olympiad team in 1936, 1939, and 1950.

Bergraser, Volf (1904-1986)

Won the French chess championship in 1957 and 1966. He became a Correspondence Grandmaster at the age of 77.

Handel – Bergraser, Correspondence 1985
1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb6 5.Nc3 e5 6.Nge2 Bg4 7.Be3 N8d7 8.b3 Ba3 9.Qd2 Qe7 10.h3 Bh5 11.Ng3 exd4 12.Qxd4 O-O-O 13.Nxh5 Nf6 14.Qf4 Bb2 15.Rd1? (15.Nb5) 15...Bxc3+ 16.Ke2 Nxh5 17.Qf5+ Kb8 18.Qxh5 Qe4 (19.Qxf7 Qc2+ 20.Kf3 Rxd1) 0-1

Bergs, Teodors (1902-1962)

In 1926, he took 2nd in the Latvian Chess Championship. In 1934, he won the Riga, Latvia City Chess Championship.

Berkes, Ferenc (1985- )

Grandmaster from Hungary. In 2002, he won the World Under-18 championship. His FIDE rating is 2619.

Berliner, Hans (1929- )

Computer scientist specializing in Artificial Intelligence and winner of the 5th world correspondence championship (1965-68). His 3-point margin of victory (14-2) was the greatest margin of victory ever achieved in a World Championship final round, and his winning percentage was also the greatest of any World Champion. His game with Yakov Estrin was voted the best game in the history of correspondence chess. In 1979 he developed a backgammon-playing program that defeated the reigning World Backgammon Champion. This was the first time that a World Champion had ever been beaten by a computer. He was the first U.S. correspondence Grandmaster. He helped develop the chess machine/program called Hitech, one of the strongest chess machines in the world. It was the first computer program to become a US Chess Federation Senior Master. Berliner wrote a chess program as part of his Ph.D. dissertation at Carnegie-Mellon University. He won the Golden Knights Postal Chess Championship three times (1955, 1956, 1959).

Berliner – Rott, Montreal 1956
1.d4 d5 2.c4 Nf6 3.cxd5 Nxd5 4.e4 Nb6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Nf3 Bg4 7.d5 Ne5? (7...Bxf3) 8.Nxe5! Bxd1 9.Bb5+ c6 10.dxc6 Qb8 11.c7+ Nd7 12.Bxd7 mate 1-0

Bernstein, Ossip (1882-1962)

Russian Grandmaster (1950). In 1903, he took 2nd (behind Chigorin) in the third Russian Championship. In 1906, he earned a Doctorate in law at Heidelberg and became a successful financial lawyer. In 1918 Ossip Bernstein was arrested in Odessa by the Cheka and ordered shot by a firing squad just because he was a legal advisor to bankers. As the firing squad lined up, a superior officer asked to see the list of prisoners' names. Discovering the name of Ossip Bernstein, he asked whether he was the famous chess master. Not satisfied with Bernstein's affirmative reply, he made him play a game with him. If Bernstein lost or drew, he would be shot. Bernstein won in short order and was released. He escaped on a British ship and settled in Paris. Bernstein's son was President Eisenhower's official interpreter because he spoke almost every European language. At age 74, he was still playing in international tournaments.

O, Bernstein – Unknown, Berlin 1903
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Bg4 3.c4 e6 4.Ne5 Bf5 5.cxd5 exd5 6.Qb3 b6? (6...Nc6) 7.e4 Bxe4 8.Bb5+ Ke7 9.Bc6 (and 10.Bxa8) 1-0

Bernstein, Sidney Norman (1911-2004)

He took 1st place in the Marshall Club Championship in 1930, 1939, 1957, and 1958. In 1942, he tied with Fred Reinfeld in the Manhattan Chess Club Championship. He played in the U.S. Championship nine times, from 1936 to 1962. In 1951, his USCF rating was 2358.

Berry, Jonathan (1953- )

Canadian chess player, organizer, and author. International FIDE Arbiter (1975 – at age 21), FIDE Master (1984), and ICCF Grandmaster (1985). He was Canadian Corresponcence Champion in 1978 and 1980. He was North American Correspondence Champion in 1982. He represented Canada in the 1982 Chess Olympiad. For many years, he was the technical editor for Inside Chess magazine.

Bertin, Joseph (1695-1736)

Chess author. In 1735 he published The Noble Game of Chess, Containing Rules and Instructions for the Use of those who have already a little Knowledge of this Game. It was the first worthwhile chess book in English and, at the time, only available at Slaughter’s Coffee House (founded by John Slauter in 1692). Bertin had 19 rules to follow during play. One of them was: to free your game, take off some of your adversary’s men, if possible for nothing.

Bertok, Mario (1929- )

Yugoslav International Master (1957).

Beshukov, Sergei (1971- )

Russian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2470.

Best Game

The 16th game of the second Karpov-Kasparov World Championship Match in Moscow 1985 was chosen by an international jury of Grandmasters as the best game ever played in the past 30 years.

Karpov-Kasparov, Moscow (16) 1985
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.Nb5 d6 6.c4 Nf6 7.N1c3 a6 8.Na3 d5 9.cxd5 exd5 10.exd5 Nb4 11.Be2 Bc5 12.O-O O-O 13.Bf3 Bf5 14.Bg5 Re8 15.Qd2 b5 16.Rad1 Nd3 17.Nab1 h6 18.Bh4 b4 19.Na4 Bd6 20.Bg3 Rc8 21.b3 g5 22.Bxd6 Qxd6 23.g3 Nd7 24.Bg2 Qf6 25.a3 a5 26.axb4 axb4 27.Qa2 Bg6 28.d6 g4 29.Qd2 Kg7 30.f3 Qxd6 31.fxg4 Qd4+ 32.Kh1 Nf6 33.Rf4 Ne4 34.Qxd3 Nf2+ 35.Rxf2 Bxd3 36.Rfd2 Qe3 37.Rxd3 Rc1! 38.Nb2 Qf2 39.Nd2 Rxd1+ 40.Nxd1 Re1+ and White resigned 0-1

Best Game Prize

A prize for the best game of a tournament or match. The first best game prize was awarded to Gunsburg for his game against Mason, New York 1889.

Bhat, Vinay (1985- )

In 1995, America’s youngest master at 10 years, 6 months (since broken by Hikaru Nakamura). Jordy Mont-Reynaud set the old record as youngest master in 1994. He tied for first place in the 1998 U.S. Cadet Championship (under 16) with national master Dmitry Schneider. In April 2000, he became an International Master (IM) at age 15, becoming the youngest IM in the United States at the time (since broken by Hikaru Nakamura).

Bhend, Edwin (1931- )

Swiss International Master (1960). Swiss Champion in 1966.

Bielicki, Carlos (1940- )

Argentine International Master (1959) who was Junior World Champion in 1959.

Bigelow, Horace Ransom (1898-1980)

In 1923, he took last place in the 9th American Chess Congress in Lake Hopatcong, New York (won by Marshall and Kupchik). In 1929, he won the Marshall Chess Club Championship. He was a journalist for the American Chess Bulletin.

Bilek, Istvan (1932- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1962). He won the Hungarian Championship in 1963, 1965, and 1970. In 1979 at an international tournament in Skupsk, he had a bye in the first round, drew his next 10 games in 13, 14, 12, 9, 12, 13, 17, and 9 moves, taking 5, 12, 15, 26, 7, 4, 5, 12, 18, and 5 minutes, respectively. Thus, he made only 125 moves in 109 minutes in this 11 round master event. When he won the Hungarian championship in 1970, he wife won the Hungarian women's championship.

Bilek – Bachtiar, Beverwijk 1966
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Bc4 g6 7.Nxc6 bxc6 8.e5 Nh5 9.Qf3 e6 10.exd6 Qxd6 11.O-O Bb7 12.Rd1 Qc5 (12...Qb4) 13.Qd3 Qe7 14.Bg5 f6 15.Be3 Kf7 16.Qd7 (16...Bc8 17.Bxe6+ Kg7 18.Qxc6 Bb7 19.Qc4 Rd8 20.Rxd8 Qxd8 21.g4) 1-0

Bilguer, Paul Rudolf von (1815-1840)

Author of the Handbuch des Schachspiels, the most influential chess book for over 90 years. The first edition was completed in 1843, after his death at the age of 24, by Baron Tassilo Heydebrand von der Lasa . Von der Lasa also edited the next four editions. He was an Army Lieutenant and one of the seven German Pleiades.

Binet, Alfred (1857-1911)

French psychologist who began the first intelligence quotient (IQ) tests. Alfred Binet conducted the first serious psychological study of the game of chess in 1894. He studied blindfold chess players as a subset of his investigations into memory. He wrote Psychologie des grands calculateurs et joueurs d’echecs.

Bird, Henry Edward (1830-1908)

An accountant and strong amateur player from England. He wrote six different books on chess. He won the first brilliancy prize (a sliver cup) for his victory over James Mason, New York 1876. he favored the opening 1.f4, now called Bird’s Opening. He played chess at the London coffee house, Simpson’s Divan, for over 50 years, from 1846 until it closed in 1903.

Bird – Em Lasker, Newcastle 1892
1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.c3 dxc3 4.Bc4 cxb2 5.Bxb2 Qg5 6.Nf3 Qxg2 7.Rg1 Bb4+?? (7...Qh3) 8.Ke2 Qh3 9.Bxf7+ Kd8 10.Bxg7 Ne7 11.Ng5 Qh4 12.Ne6 mate 1-0

Birnboim, Nathan (1950- )

Israeli International Master (1978). Israeli Champion in 1976 and 1980.

Bischoff, Klaus (1961- )

German Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2560. In 2003, he became the first German Internet Champion.

Bisguier, Arthur (1929- )

American Grandmaster (1956). Winner of the U.S. Junior Championship in 1946 and 1949, U.S. Championship in 1954, winner of three U.S. Opens (1950, 1956, 1959), and represented the U.S. in five Olympiads. He won the U.S. Senior Open in 1989, 1997, and 1998. In 2005, he was named Dean of American Chess.

Donovan – Bisguier, Detroit 1950
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.Nf3 Nc6 5.a3 d6 6.e3 Bf5 7.exd6 Bxd6 8.Be2 Qf6 9.Nd4?? (9.Nc3) 9...Nxf2 10.Kxf2 Bc2+ 11.Nf3 Bxd1 12.Rxd1 Ne5 13.Nbd2 Ng4+ 14.Kg1 Bxh2+ (15.Nxh2 Qf2+ 16.Kh1 Qxe2) 0-1


The origin of the name of the chess bishop is obscure. It was introduced in the 15th century, taking the move of the courier and placed where the alfil used to be at the set up of the chess pieces on a chessboard. The appearance of the Muslim fil was formless but with two protuberances said to symbolize the elephant from which the piece derives its name. Perhaps these suggest the Bishop’s mitre, hence Bishop, the name used in English-speaking countries since the new game gained acceptance. The original move of the bishop was only three squares diagonally. By 1500 it could move to any open square diagonally.

Biyiasas, Peter (1950- )

Canadian Grandmaster (1978) who later moved to the United States. He has won the Canadian championship twice (1972, 1975). In 1978 he won the World Open. In 1981 Bobby Fischer stayed at Biyiasas’s home. They played hundreds of blitz and bullet chess games. Biyiasas got one draw and lost all the rest. He is married to International Master Ruth Haring.

Bjelica, Dimitrije (1935- )

Yugoslav chess journalist and master that may have played the greatest number of games at one time. In 1982 he played 301 games at once, winning 258, drawing 36, and losing 7 in nine hours. He is a former champion of Bosnia and Herzegovina. He has interviewed and filmed every world champion since Botvinnik. He has written over 80 chess books with 190 editions and produced 35 chess videos. He is the founder of the World Children’s Chess Olympiad.

Blackburne, Joseph Henry (1841-1924)

English player of grandmaster strength. He learned the game at age 19. He won the British championship in 1868. His nickname was the Black Death, given to him by a comment in the tournament book of Vienna 1873. He was also known for his temper. After losing to Steinitz in a match, he threw him out of a window. Luckily for Steinitz that they were on the first floor. From 1870 to 1888 he was one of the top 5 chess players in the world. He was once arrested as a spy because he sent chess moves in the mail and it was thought the moves were coded secrets. He tied for first in the British Championship of 1914 at the age of 72. During a simultaneous exhibition at Cambridge University, the students thought to gain the advantage by placing a bottle of whisky and a glass at each end of the playing oval. In the end he emptied both bottles and won all his games in record time. During the temperance movement in England, he declared that whisky drinking improved one's chess because alcohol cleared the brain and he tried to prove that theory as often as possible. It is estimated he played 100,000 games of chess in his career.

Blackburne – Fleissig, Vienna 1873
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.Qe2 Bc5 6.c3 b5 7.Bc2 d5 8.exd5 Qxd5? (8...Ne7) 9.d4 Bd6 10.Bb3 Qe4 11.Qxe4 Nxe4 12.Bd5 1-0

Blackmar, Armand (1826-1888)

Music professor, music publisher, and amateur chess player. He established a music house in New Orleans during the Civil War. He wrote Southern patriotic music such as the Dixie War Song (1861), the Beauregard Manassas quick-step (1861), Southern Marseillaise (1861), and the Bonnie Blue Flag (1862). The bonnie blue flag was the first Confederate flag. He became the major wartime publisher of songs, issuing about half of the songs brought out during the Civil War. However, the city was captured in 1862 and occupied by Union forces. His brother moved to Augusta, Georgia to carry on music publishing for the Confederacy. Blackmar was arrested and imprisoned for publishing Confederacy music such as Bonnie Blue Flag.. The Union soldiers burnt his publishing company to the ground and confiscated all his Confederate States’ copyrights. In 1881-1882 he analyzed and published the Blackmar Gambit (1.d4 d5 2.e4 dxe4 3.f3) in the July 1882 issue of Brentano’s Chess.

Blake, Joseph (1859-1951)

Tie for 1st in the 1909 British Championship, but lost the play-off. He was British Correspondence Champion in 1922.

Blatny, Pavel (1968- )

Grandmaster from the Czech Republic. His FIDE rating is 2533. In 1998, he tied for 1st (with Cyrus Lakdawala) at the American Open. In 2002, he tied for 1st (with Yuri Shulman) at the American Open. In 2003, he tied for 1st (with Atalik and Akobian) at the American Open.

Blau, Max (1918-1984)

Swiss International Master (1953). Swiss Champion in 1953, 1955, 1956, and 1967.

Bledow, Ludwig (1795-1846)

German professor of mathematics (PhD). He founded the first German chess association in 1827. He was the first person to suggest an international chess tournament (in a letter to von der Lasa in 1843). In 1846, he founded of the first German magazine, Deutsche Schachzeitung. He was the founder of the German Pleiades. He was a chess book collector. When he died, he had over 14,000 volumes of chess books, the largest private chess library in the world.

Horowitz – Bledow, Berlin 1837
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.c3 Bb6 5.d4 Qe7 6.d5 Qe7 7.Be2 d6 8.h3 f5 9.Bg5 Nf6 10.Nbd2 O-O 11.Nh4 fxe4 12.Nxe4 Nxe4 13.Bxe7 Bxf2+ 14.Kf1 Ng3 mate 0-1


Perhaps the first master chess game played on a blimp occurred on the opening day of the 1932 Pasadena International Chess Congress (won by Alekhine). On the opening day in August, Isaac Kashdan and Arnold Dake played an exhibition game over Pasadena in a Goodyear blimp called “Volunteer.” The blimp had been used during the Olympic games in Los Angeles. The moves were transmitted by radio to the opening luncheon meeting. The game was declared drawn by repetition after 19 moves.

Blind Chess players

In 1950 Sir. T. Thomas was the first blind player to play in a chess Olympiad (Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia). Blind player R. Bonham formed the International Braille Association. The first World Blind Correspondence Championship began in 1955 and was won by R. Bonham. James Slagle won the first U.S. Championship for the blind in 1971. The American master Albert Sandrin (1923-) of Chicago participated in the World Chess Championship for the Blind and played all his games from memory, without use of a board. In 1968 the United States had only 25 blind chess players in its Braille Chess Association. The Soviet Union had 150,000 blind players in its Braille Chess Association.

Blindfold Checkers

Blindfold checkers is more difficult than blindfold chess. The greatest number played blindfold simultaneously is 28. The uniformity of checkers makes it harder to reach distinctive positions.

Blindfold Chess

Buzecca, a Muslim, was the first blindfold player in Europe, playing two games blindfold in Florence in 1265. It took 518 years before three games were played blindfold, by Philidor in 1783. One newspaper wrote 'This exertion of Mr. Philidor's abilities appear one of the greatest of which the human memory is susceptible. That record stood for 74 years. In 1857 Louis Paulsen played four games blindfold simultaneously (see simultaneous). In 1930, blindfold chess was once forbidden by law in the Soviet Union because it is considered artistically pointless and harmful to one's health.

Blocker, Calvin (1955- )

International Master (1982). 12-time Ohio Champion.

Bloodgood, Claude Frizzel (1937-2001)

Claude Frizzel Bloodgood (born Klaus Frizzel Bluttgutt III) was born in La Paz, Mexico on July 14, 1937 (some sources say he was born in 1924). He was the author of The Tactical Grob, Blackburne-Hartlaub Gambit( 1.d4 e5 2.dxe5 d6), and Nimzovich Attack: The Norfolk Gambits. In the late 1950’s, he was editor of the Viriginia Chess News Roundup and the rating statistician for the Virginia State Chess Association. In 1958, he started the All Service Postal Chess Club (ASPCC). In 1970 he was sentenced to death for killing his stepmother by strangulation in 1969, apparently in a fight about an inheritance and bad-check charges. While on death row (prisoner 99432), he played over 2,000 postal games simultaneously. The postage was paid by the State of Virginia. He was scheduled for execution 6 times, but received a reprieve on all occasions. His death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment in 1972 and the state stopped paying postage. He was allowed to play in chess tournaments outside the prison, accompanied by a guard. In 1974, Bloodgood escaped after he and another chess player (Lewis Capleaner – a murderer inmate) overpowered a guard (George Winslow) who was escorting them to a chess tournament. Bloodgood cuffed the guard, stole his guns, and fled to New York. When he was recaptured after several weeks at large, his correspondence privilege was taken away from him at Virginia State Penitentiary. His escape led to the resignation of Virginia’s director of prisons, no more prisoners taken to outside chess tournaments, and the Virginia Penitentiary Chess program dismantled. The guard was also arrested for his involvement in the escape. In 1996 he was the 2nd highest USCF ranked player in the country (2702), just behind Gata Kamsky. His actual strength was much less (perhaps weak expert). He built up a high numerical rating by organizing chess tournaments and matches in prison, and consistently beat the other weaker players. Each time he won another tournament, he accrued a few more rating points. From 1993 to 1999, he played 3,174 rated chess games, winning over 91 percent of his games. His rating pointed out a flaw in the USCF rating system. He participated in the 15th U.S. Correspondence Championship, which began in June, 2000, scoring 3 wins and 9 losses (he died before finishing his last game). He died of lung cancer in the hospital of the Powhatan Correctional Center near Richmond, Virginia on August 4, 2001.

Blumenfeld, Beniamin (1884-1947)

Born in Volkovisk, Russia who invented the Blumenfeld Counter Gambit (1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 e6 4.Nf3 b5). He became a student of chess psychology and received a doctorate for a thesis on the nature of blunders in chess. He died in Moscow in 1947.

Blumenfeld – NN, Russia
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Nxd4 Bc5 5.Be3 Qf6 6.Nb5 Bxe3 7.fxe3 Qd8 8.Qg4 g6 9.Qf4 d6 10.Bc4 Ne5 11.O-O Be6 12.Bxe6 fxe6 13.N1c3 Kd7?! (13...Ne7) 14.Rad1 Kc8? (14...Ke7) 15.Qxe5! (15...dxe5 16.Rxd8+ Kxd8 17.Rf8+ Kd7 18.Rxa8) 1-0

Blumin, Boris (1907-1998)

He won the Montreal City Championship in 1933, 1934, 1936, 1937, and 1939. Canadian Chess Champion in 1936 and 1937. He moved to New York in 1939.

Bobotsov, Milko (1931- )

First Bulgarian to be awarded the title of International Grandmaster (1961). He was Bulgarian champion in 1958. He played in 8 Bulgarian Chess Olympiads.

Saborido – Bobotsov, Bulgaria 1969
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 O-O 5.Be3 d6 6.f3 Nc6 7.Nge2 a6 8.Qd2 Rb8 9.g4 Re8 10.O-O-O b5 11.Ng3 e5 12.Nce2 Nxd4 13.Nxd4 exd4 14.Bxd4 Be6 15.Nf5 Bxf5 16.gxf5 c5 17.Be3 bxc4 18.fxg6 hxg6 19.Bxc4 d5 20.exd5 Nd7 21.b3 Qf6 22.Bf4?? (22.Rde1) 22...Qa1+ (23.Kc2 Qxa2 24.Kc1 Qa1+ 25.Kc1 Qa3+ 26.Kb1 Rxb3+ 27.Bxb3 Qa1+ 28.Kc2 Qb2+ 29.Kd3 Qxb3+ 30.Qc3 Qxc3 mate) 0-1

Boden, Samuel (1826-1882)

English chess player. In 1858, Paul Morphy declared that Boden was the strongest of all English players. Against Morphy, he won 1 game, drew 4 games, and lost 6 games. From 1858 to 1873, he edited a chess column for The Field. He worked for the railway company and was an amateur painter and art critic. He died of typhoid fever.

Schulder – Boden, London 1853
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.c3 f5 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.d4 fxe4 6.dxe5 exf3 7.exf6 Qxf6 8.gxf3 Nc6 9.f4 Bd7 10.Be3 O-O-O 11.Nd2 Re8 12.Qf3 Bf5 13.O-O-O d5 14.Bxd5 Qxc3+ 15.bxc3 Ba3 mate 0-1

Boensch, Uwe (1958- )

German Grandmaster (1986), born in East Germany. He is the headmaster of the FIDE Trainer Academy.

Boey, Josef (1934- )

Belgian International Master (1973) and Correspondence Grandmaster (1975). He took 2nd place in the 7th World Correspondence Championship, 1972-1975. In the 8th World Correspondence Championship, 1975-1980, he placed 11th-12th. He did not play in the 9th World Correspondence Championship, but took 7th place in the 10th World Correspondence Championship, 1978-1984.

Bogart, Humphrey (1900-1957)

Before becoming a movie star, Humphrey Bogart hustled strangers at 5-minute chess for 50 cents a game in chess parlors in New York Times Square during the 1920s and 1930s. During the 1930s depression, Bogart, Reshevsky, and Denker were in adjacent department store windows playing passerbys for dimes. In 1943 the FBI prevented him from playing postal chess, thinking the chess notation were secret codes. He was a USCF tournament director and active in the California State Chess Association. He once drew a game against Reshevsky in a simultaneous exhibition. He made 75 films and chess appears in several of his movies. He and his wife, Lauren Bacall, appeared on the cover of Chess Review in 1945 playing chess with Charles Boyer. Bogart rated his friends according to their ability to play chess.

Bogdanovic, Rajko (1931- )

International Master (1963) from Bosnia. He played in 10 Yugoslav championships. His occupation was journalist and radio reporter.

Bogdanovski, Vlatko (1964- )

Grandmaster from Macedonia. His FIDE rating is 2443.

Bogoljubow, Efim (1889-1952)

Grandmaster (1951), born in Kiev, who once spent over two hours over his 24th move against Steiner, Berlin 1928, and then chose a move that lost a piece. In 1928 he defeated Max Euwe in a match in the Netherlands (won 3, lost 2, drew 5). The match was for the title of FIDE champion, so Bogoljubow was the first FIDE world champion. This was stated in the minutes of the FIDE’s 5th chess congress at The Hague in 1928. He played Alexander Alekhine in 1929 and 1934 for the World Chess Championship and lost both matches by a wide margin. His most famous statement was "When I'm White I win because I'm White. When I'm Black I win because I'm Bogoljubow." He died in Triberg, Germany after concluding a simultaneous chess exhibition. He was USSR Champion in 1924 and 1925. He left the USSR in 1925 and settled in Germany. He renounced his USSR citizenship in 1926 and became a German citizen in 1927. He was then denounced as a political renegade in the Soviet Union. He won the German championship in 1925, 1931, 1933, and 1949.

Bogoljubow – Meister, France 1951
1.e4 d6 2.Nf3 Nd7 3.Bc4 g6 4.Bxf7+ Kxf7 5.Ng5+ Kf6 6.Qf3+ 1-0

Bogoljubow – Prokes, Baden 1922
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.e4 h5 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Nh3 d6 7.Bg5 Qd7 8.exd6 Bxd6 9.Be2 f6 10.Bf4 Nce5 11.f3 Nh6 12.Be3 Qf7 13.Nf4 Nxc4? (13...O-O) 14.Qa4+ (and 15.Qxc4) 1-0

Bogatirchuk, Feodor (1892-1984)

Russian International Master (1954) from Kiev who emigrated from the USSR to Canada in 1949 and was the first persona non grata in Soviet chess. In 1912, he tied for 2nd in the championship of Czarist Russia. He was the author of the first chess book in Ukrainian in 1926. He won the USSR championship in 1927 (tied with Pyotr Romanovsky). He played in 6 Russian championships. He was a medical doctor and professor of radiological anatomy. During World War II he was head of the Ukrainian Red Cross. He was nominated by Canada for the Grandmaster title, but the Soviet representatives to FIDE protested this title, which he never received but deserved.

Boi, Paolo (1528-1598)

One of the leading players of the 16th century. He was also a poet, soldier and sailor from Syracuse. In 1549 he defeated Pope Paul III in a chess match. The Pope offered to make him cardinal, which he refused. In 1574 he defeated Ruy Lopez at the court of King Phillip II of Spain. The King showered him with great rewards including an official appointment in Sicily that paid 500 crowns a year. He was renowned for his ability to play three chess games at once without sight of board. In 1576 he was taken prisoner and sold as a slave to a Turk. He played chess for his master that brought in a lot of money. He later gained his freedom back by teaching his master chess. In 1598 he played a chess match with Salvio in Naples and lost. Three days later he died in his lodgings. Some sources (Murray) say he was poisoned. Other sources say he caught a cold when hunting and died as a result of it. He was 70 years old.

Bolbochan, Jacobo (1906-1984)

Former Argentine chess champion (1932 and 1933) who became an International Master in 1965 at the age of 59. Brother of Julio Bolbochan.

Bolbochan, Julio (1920-1996)

Argentine Grandmaster who received the title in 1977 at the age of 57. He was Argentina champion in 1946 and 1948. He played on 7 Argentine Chess Olympiad teams. Brother of Jacobo Bolbochan.

Bond – Bolbochan, Los Angeles 1991
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e6 7.Be3 Be7 8.Qd3 Nbd7 9.Nf3 b5 10.b4 Bb7 11.O-O-O (11.a4) 11...Rc8 12.h3 Qc7 13.Kb2 O-O 14.g4 Nb6 15.Bxb6 Qxb6 16.a3 Rxc3 17.Qxc3 Nxe4 18.Qb3 Bf6+ 19.Kc1 Nc3 (20.Rd2 Qb6 21.Re1 Nxe2+ 22.R1xe2 Qxf3) 0-1

Boleslavasky, Isaac (1919-1977)

Soviet International Grandmaster (1950). He was a Candidate in 1950 (tied for first) and 1953 (10th-11th). He was Bronstein second in 1951. He was Smyslov’s second in 1956. He was Petrosian’s second in 1963, 1966, and 1969. He played in 11 USSR Championships. His daughter married Grandmaster David Bronstein.

Boleslavsky – Lilienthal, Moscow, 1941
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d5 3.Nxe5 Qe7 4.d4 f6 5.Nd3 dxe4 6.Nf4 Qf7 7.Nd2 Bf5 8.g4 Bg6 9.Bc4 Qd7 10.Qe2 Qxd4 11.Ne6 Qb6 12.Nxe4 Nd7 13.Bf4 Ne5 14.O-O-O Bf7 15.N4g5 fxg5 16.Bxe5 Bxe6 17.Bxc7 1-0

Bologan, Viorel (1971- )

Grandmaster (1991) from Moldavia, currently living in Germany. In 2003, he won the Aeroflot Open in Moscow and the Dortmund supertournament. He graduated from Moscow Physical Culture and Sports Institute with a PhD. His doctoral thesis was entitled, “Structure of Special Preparation of High-Level Chess Players.” He won the New York Open in 1997.

Bonch-Osmolovsky, Mikhail (1919-1975)

Soviet national master (1951). Soviet chess judge.

Boncourt, M (1770-1845)

Strong French master who drew a match with Szen in 1835. For a time, he was the hidden operator in Maelzel’s The Turk automaton. He almost revealed how The Turk worked when he sneezed during a game. This prompted Maelzel to install a noisy spring to cover up any future coughs and sneezes.

Bondarevsky, Igor (1913-1979)

Soviet Grandmaster (1950) and Correspondence Grandmaster (1961). He played in the USSR championship 9 times, sharing 1st with Lilienthal in the 1940 championship. He tied for 6th in the 1948 Saltsjobaden Interzonal, becoming a Candidate. However, he withdrew from the Candidate’s tournament before it started. He was Spassky’s trainer in 1961 and his second in 1966 and 1969. He was an economist.

Sliwa – Bondarevsky, Hastings 1960
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Be7 4.Nf3 Nf6 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bh4 O-O 7.cxd5 Nxd5 8.Bxe7 Qxe7 9.Qb3 Nxc3 10.Qxc3 b6 11.Rc1 Ba6 12.g3 Nd7 13.Bg2 Rac8 14.Nd2 c5 15.Qa3 cxd4 16.Rxc8 Rxc8 17.b4 Qxb4 0-1

Bonin, Jay (1955- )

International Master (1985) who has won the New York State Championship, the Manhattan Chess Club Championship, and the Marshall Chess Club Championship, all in the same year (1997).

Bonner, Gerald (1941- )

Scottish Champion in 1967, 1970, and 1972.

Bonus Socius (Good Companion)

A manuscript written around 1275 by Nicholas de St. Nicholai of Lombardy, Italy. It contains a collection of chess problems. It is the first large collection of older chess problems. It was the first European manuscript that used coordinate notation.

Bezviner – Bonin, New York 1992
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f3 O-O 6.Be3 c5 7.dxc5 dxc5 8.Qxd8 Rxd8 9.Bxc5 Nc6 10.Nge2 Nd7 11.Be3 Nde5 12.Nf4 Nb4 13.Rc1 Be6 14.a3 Nbd3+ 15.Nxd3 Nxd3+ 16.Bxd3 Rxd3 17.Nd1 Bxb2 18.Rb1 Bxa3 19.Rxb7 Bxc4 20.Bxa7? (20.Rxa7) 20...Rxa7 (21.Rxa7 Bb4+ 22.Kf2 Bc5+ and 23...Bxa7) 0-1

Book, Chess

The oldest European book on chess is Juegos Axedrez, dados y tablas, written in the 13th century.

The first hardback book dealing with chess, Dass Goldin Spil, was published in Augsburg in 1472. The first chess book printed in Russia was a translation of Benjamin Franklin's Morals of Chess, published in St. Petersburg in 1791. The title was Pravila dlia Shashechnoi Igry (Rules for the Game of Chess). However, the title used the word for checkers instead of the word for chess (shakmatnoi). The first book to explain chess strategy was L'Analyze des Eschecs, by Philidor in 1749. It went through more than 100 editions in ten languages. The first chess book published in America was Chess Made Easy, printed and sold by James Humphreys of Philadelphia in 1802. This was just a reprint of Philidor's book published in 1796 with inclusion of Franklin’s Morals of Chess. The first original American book was The Elements of Chess, published in Boston in 1805 by W. Pelham. The first chess book entirely devoted to the analysis of a single opening, Analysis of the Muzio Gambit by Kassin and Cochrane, was published in India in 1829. A book was published in German with the title, Advice to Spectators at Chess Tournaments. All the pages were blank except the last. On the last page were two words, Halt's Maul (keep your mouth shut). The first book review was Chess by Twiss in 1787.

Book, Eero Einar (1910-1990)

Finnish International Master (1950) and engineer. He won the Finnish national championship six times (1931, 1934, 1935, 1936, 1945-46, and 1963) and won the Nordic Championship in 1947. He was given the title Emeritus Grandmaster in 1984.

Book – Heidenheimo, Helsinki 1925
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bc4 Nxe4 4.Qh5 Ng5 5.d4 Ne6 6.d5 g6 7.dxe6 gxh5 8.exf7+ Ke7 9.Bg5+ Kd6 10.O-O-O+ Kc5 11.Rd5+ Kxc4 12.b3+ Kb4 13.Rb5+ Ka3 14.Nb1+ Kxa2 15.Ra5+ Ba3+ 16.Rxa3 mate 1-0

Borisek, Jure (1986- )

International master from Slovenia. His FIDE rating is 2509.

Borisenko, Georgi (1922- )

Ukranian Correspondence Grandmaster (1965). He played in eight Soviet championships. He took 2nd place (behind Zagorovsky) in the 4th World Correspondence Championship, 1962-1965. In 1966 he was awarded the Correspondence Grandmaster title.

Borisenko – Bertholdt, Leningrad 1960
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Nf3 O-O 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bh4 c5 7.e3 cxd4 8.Nxd4 Nc6 9.Bd3 d5 10.cxd5 exd5 11.O-O Bxc3 12.bxc3 Ne5 13.Rb1 b6 14.Bb5 Bd7 15.f4 Neg4 16.Re1 Re8 17.Qf3 g5 18.fxg5 Ne4 19.g6 f6 20.h3 Nd2 21.Qxd5+ 1-0

Borochow, Henry (1898- )

U.S. Master Emeritus. He won the California State Championship in 1930 and 1931. In 1932, he took 6th in the Pasadena International Tournament (won by Alekhine). He won the Western Championship. He was a Vice President of the U.S. Chess Federation.

Borochow – Fine, Pasadena 1932
1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 Nc6 4.c4 Nb6 5.d5 Nxe5 6.c5 Nbc4 7.f4 e6 8.Qd4 Qh4+ 9.g3 Qh6 10.Nc3 exd5 11.fxe5 1-0


In 1993, a person was shot and killed while playing a chess game in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the first to die from sniper fire while playing chess. The first chess championship of Bosnia-Herzegovina was held in 1994, won by Rade Milovanovic. In 1996 a chess match was held to help raise funds to assist in clearing Bosnia of leftover landmines. The match was staged between two Norwegian Grandmasters (Agdestein and Gausel) and two Bosnian Grandmasters (Sokolov and Nikolic). The match ended in a draw.

Botsari, Anna-Maria (1972- )

Woman Grandmaster from Greece. Her FIDE rating is 2297. She once held the record of most opponents in consecutive chess games. In 2001, she played 1,102 consecutive games against different opponents, with 1,094 wins and 7 draws. The event has at Kalavryta, Greece. In 2004, she tied for 1st in the Greek Women’s championship. In 2005, Susan Polgar played 1,131 consecutive games.

Botterill, George (1949- )

British International Master (1978). Welsh Champion in 1973 and 1974. British champion in 1974 and 1977.

Botvinnik, Mikhail (1911-1995 )

6th world chess champion (1948-1957, 1958-60, 1961-1963) who was the only man to win the title three times. He has played every world champion of this century and the early trainer of Karpov and Kasparov. He has a PhD (1951) in Electrical Engineering and now works on computer chess programs. He received $5,000 for winning his first world championship. In 1970 he gave up tournament chess in order to concentrate on the development of chess computers. He learned chess at age 12. By age 15 he was one of the strongest players in the USSR, taking 5th place in the USSR championship. In 1931 he won the USSR championship at age 19. Botvinnik did not play in the 15th USSR championship in 1947 in protest over the cancellation of the world championship. The match-tournament was held in 1948, and Botvinnik won it, becoming the 6th official world chess champion.

Mazel – Botvinnik, Leningrad 1938
1.c4 Nf6 2.Nc3 e6 3.e4 c5 4.f4 Nc6 5.Nf3 d5 6.e5 Ng4 7.cxd5 exd5 8.Qb3 Nb4 9.a3? (9.h3) 9...c4 10.Qa4+ Bd7 11.Qd1 Qb6 (threatening 12...Qf2 mate; if 12.Qe2 Nd3+ 13.Kd1 Qb3 mate) 0-1

Bourdonnais-MacDonnell match

Match played in London in 1834 by Louis-Charles de La Bourdonnais and Alexander McDonnell. At least 85 games were played, the largest number of games ever played successively in match conditions. Neither knew a word of the other's language. There was no time limit and McDonnell sometimes spent over an hour and a half on a move. The match was really a series of six matches. Labourdonnais won 45 games, drew 13 games, and lost 27 games. The match lasted over four months. McDonnell was considered the best player in England and Bourdonnais was the best player in France. The match was played at the Westminster Chess Club.

Bourdonnais, Louis-Charles Mahe de La (1795-1840)

French master and strongest chess player of his time. He learned chess in Paris in 1814 while attending school. He was undisputed champion of France in the 1820s. In 1834 he played a series of matches with England’s strongest player, Alexander McDonnell, and won. In 1836 he became editor of the world’s first chess magazine, Le Palamede. He died in London and was buried in Kensal Green cemetery and was buried near McDonnell.

Jouy – Bourdonnais, Paris 18361.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.Bc4 g4 5.Ne5 Qh4+ 6.Kf1 f3 7.Nxf7 Nc6 8.d4 Bg7 9.c3 Nf6 10.Nxh8 d5 11.exd5 Ne4 12.Qe1 g3 13.Bd3 fxg2+ 14.Kxg2 Bh3+ 15.Kg1 Nxd4 16.Qxe4+ Qxe4 17.Bxe4 Ne2 mate 0-1

Boutteville, Cesar (1917- )

Born in Vietnam, he was French Champion 6 times (1945, 1950, 1954, 1955, 1959, and 1967).

Bouwmeester, Hans (1929- )

Dutch International Master (1954) and mathematics teacher. He was appointed the first official coach of the Royal Dutch Chess Federation. From 1956 to 1968, he was editor of : Losbladige Schaakberichten. He came in 2nd place in the 1957 and 1967 Dutch Championships. He later became a Grandmaster in Correspondence Chess.

Donner – Bouwmeester, Amsterdam 1948
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Be2 e5 7.Nb3 Be7 8.f4 O-O 9.f5 Qb6 10.Bg5 Nxe4 0-1

Bouaziz, Slim (1950- )

First Grandmaster from Tunisia and first Grandmaster from Africa. His FIDE rating is 2341. In 1985, he took last place in the Tunis Interzonal. He withdrew after 6 rounds. He drew one game and lost the rest. In 1987, he took 17th out of 18 in the Szirak Interzonal.

Brady, Frank

First editor of Chess Life magazine and business manager of the US Chess Federation. Author of Profile of a Prodigy. Editor and publisher of Chessworld magazine. He has a PhD in Communications from NYU.

Brekke, Jacob

Norwegian Champion in 1919, 1920, 1923, and 1925.

Breyer, Gyula (Julius) (1893-1921)

Hungarian of Grandmaster strength, he set a new blindfold record of 25 opponents (won 15, drew 7, lost 3) in 1921 in Berlin. He was one of the pioneering leaders of hypermodern chess. He was the Hungarian champion in 1912. He died of a heart attack at the age of 28

Breyer – Ballai, Pistyan 1912
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 f5 4.d4 fxe4 5.Nxe5 Nf6 6.Bc4 d5 7.Nxd5 Nxd5 8.Qh5+ g6 9.Nxg6 hxg6? (9...Nf6) 10.Qxg6+ Kd7 11.Bxd5 Qe8 12.Bf7 Qe7 13.Bg5 Ne5 14.Qf5+ (14...Kc6 15.Qxe4+ and 16.Bxe7) 1-0


Chess masters who are/were also strong bridge players include Gerald Abrahams, James Aitken, Hugh Alexander, Mary Bain, Arthur Bisguier, Efim Bogoljubov, Wolfgang Heidenfeld, Charles Kalme, Emanuel Lasker, Irena Levitina, Tony Miles, Rossetto, Gideon Stahlberg, and Simon Webb.

Brinck-Claussen, Bjorn (1942- )

Nordic Champion in 1963. Danish Champion in 1966, 1970, and 1977.

Brinckmann, Alfred (1891-1967)

German International Master (1953). He authored several chess tournament books.

Brinckmann – Preusse, Germany 1927
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Ng3 e5 6.Nf3 exd4 7.Nxd4 Bc5 8.Qe2+ Be7 9.Be3 O-O 10.O-O-O Qc7 11.Ndf5 Be6 12.Nxe7+ Qxe7 13.Bg5 h6 14.Nf5 Qb4 15.Rd4 Qc5 16.Nxh6+ gxh6 17.Bxf6 Qf5 18.Qf3 1-0

British Chess Association (BCA)

The first national body to promote chess, founded in 1884. Winston Churchill's father, Lord Randolph Churchill (1849-1895), was elected Vice President of the BCA in 1885. The President was the poet Lord Alfred Tennyson.

British Chess Magazine

First chess magazine to complete 100 years of continuous publication (1881 to 1981). It began as a monthly chess magazine in October, 1872 called Huddersfield College Magazine. On January 1, 1881 it became the British Chess Magazine.

Broadbent, Reginald (1906- )

Took 1st place in the British Championship in 1947 (lost the play-off) 1948, and 1950.

Brodsky, Michail (1969- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2554.

Bronstein, David (1924- )

Grandmaster (1950) and winner of the first Interzonal in 1948 at Saltsjobaden who survived an assassination attack during the tournament. On the last day Bronstein was playing Tartakover. Suddenly, a Lithuanian made a lunge at Bronstein to kill him. Several spectators grabbed him. He wanted to murder all Russians because he claimed the Russians were responsible for sending his sister to Siberia and murdering her. Bronstein won the game and the Interzonal with a 13.5-5.5 score. First place prize for the first interzonal was $550. He wrote a classic book covering the 1953 Candidates Tournament in Zurich. Many consider this the greatest chess book ever written. Bronstein married Grandmaster Isaac Boleslavksy’s daughter. In 1951 he tied the world championship match 12-12 with Botvinnik. A tie match meant that the world champion would retain his title. Thus, Bronstein became the man who came the closest to the world championship without winning it. He played in 20 USSR championships.

Bronstein – Tomic, Vinkovci 1970
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 g6 4.c3 Qb6 5.Ba4 Bg7 6.O-O e5 7.Na3 Nge7 8.b4 cxb4 9.Nc4 Qc5 10.d3 bxc3 11.Rb1 c2 (11...Nd4) 12.Qxc2 Nd4? (12...a6) 13.Nxd4 (13...Qxd4 14.Be3; 13...exd4 14.Ba3 Qh5 15.Nd6+) 1-0

Bronstein – I. Zaitsev, USSR 1969
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 d5 4.exd5 Nf6 5.Bc4 Nxd5 6.O-O Be6 7.Bb3 Bd6 8.c4 Ne7 9.d4 Ng6 10.c5 Be7 11.Bxe6 fxe6 12.Re1 O-O 13.Rxe6 Bxc5? 14.Qb3 Bxd4+ 15.Nxd4 Qxd4+ 16.Be3! 1-0

Bronstein, David (1879-1940)

Original name of Leon Trotsky, Russian revolutionary. He was the commissar for war who created the Red Army and came to power with Lenin. He spent much of his time during World War I playing chess in Vienna’s Cafe Central. His main opponent was Baron Rothchild. He and Lenin played chess together a great deal.

Browne, Walter Shawn (1949- )

Six-time U.S. chess champion (1974, 1975, 1977, 1980, 1981, and 1983). He became a Grandmaster in 1970 while representing Australia (he was born in Australia and raised in New York). He is the founder of the World Blitz Chess Association (WBCA). He was inducted in the US Hall of Fame in 2003. In 1966 he won the US Junior Championship. He has won the National Open 11 times and the American Open 8 times (from 1971 to 1997). He won the first World Open, held in New York, in 1973. In 1964 he won the New York State Junior Championship with a perfect 5-0 score. In 1966 he won the first U.S. Junior Championship. In 1969 he won the Australian championship. In a Canadian tournament in 1971, one of Browne’s opponents tried to fluster him in a time-pressure scramble by banging an extra Queen down on the side of the board. The opponent’s pawn was about to make it to the 8th rank and get promoted to a Queen. Browne picked up the extra Queen and hurled it across the tournament room. Browne learned the game at age 8. He made master at age 14. He dropped out of high school (Erasmus High) to play chess and poker. His wife, Racquel, is a clinical psychologist from Argentina. In 2005, he won the US Senior Open in Las Vegas.

Browne – Polstein, Atlantic City 1972
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Bf5 5.Ng3 Bg6 6.N1e2 e5 7.dxe5 Qa5+ 8.Bd2 Qxe5 9.Bc3 Qc7 10.Qd2 f6 11.O-O-O Ne7 12.Nf4 Bf7 13.Qe3 Nd7 (13...Qb6) 14.Nf5 Ne5? 15.Bxe5 (15...fxe5 or 15...Qxd5 16.Nd6+; 15...Nxf5 16.Bxc7+ Nxe3 17.fxe3 Bxa2 18.b3) 1-0

V. Bhat – Browne, San Francisco 2000
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Bb5+ Bd7 4.Bxd7+ Nxd7 5.O-O Ngf6 6.Qe2 e6 7.b3 Be7 8.Bb2 O-O 9.c4 a6 10.d4 cxd4 11.Nxd4 Re8 12.Nc3 Qa5 13.Rad1 Rac8 14.Kh1 Bf8 15.f4 Qh5 16.Qe3 Qxh2+ 0-1

Bruce, Rowena (1919-1999)

The only player to have played two world champions in a tournament on the same day. In the Plymouth 1938 tournament she played world woman champion Menchik in the morning and world champion Alekhine in the afternoon for rounds 2 and 3. She has won the British Ladies' Championship 11 times, from 1937 to 1969. She was the World Girls’ Champion in the 1920s (Rowena Dew).

Bruehl, Hans (John) Moritz von (1736-1809)

Born on December 19, 1736 in Wiederau, Germany. He was Minister of Saxony in Germany and Ambassador to England, and lived in London. He was one of the strongest players of the London chess club. He gave support to Philidor. He was a count. In 1782, at the Parsloe’s, Philidor drew with Bruehl and defeated Dr. Thomas Bowdler blindfolded, simultaneously. Philidor played several blindfold games against Bruehl throughout the years. In 1788, Bruehl defeated Cotter and lost to General H. S. Conway in two chess matches in London. In 1795, Philidor published a third edition of his chess book, : L’analyse du jeu des Eschecs, and dedicated it to his friend and chess patron, Count Bruehl. The count was also interested in music (a patron of musicians) and astronomy (he built his own observatory). He was a colonel in the French service. He died in London on June 9, 1809.

Brunner, Lucas (1967- )

First Swiss Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2480.

Trachsel – Brunner, Bern 1993
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.e3 Bb4 5.Qc2 O-O 6.Nd5 Re8 7.Be2 e4 8.Ng1 Bd6 9.a3 Nxd5 10.cxd5 Qg5 11.g3 Qxd5 12.f3? (12.Bc4) 12...Nd4 13.exd4 exf3 (14.Nxf3 Qxf3) 0-1

Brustman, Agnieszka (1962- )

Women’s Grandmaster (1985). European Junior Women’s Champion in 1980. World Junior Women’s Champion in 1982.

Bruzon, Lazaro (1982- )

Cuba’s youngest grandmaster and the 2000 World Junior Chess Champion. 1n 1999, he became a grandmaster 32 days after becoming an International Master. He was eliminated in the first round in the 2004 Tripoli FIDE World Championship. He won the Cuban Championship in 2004 and 2005.

Brynell, Stellan (1962- )

Grandmaster from Sweden. His FIDE rating is 2484.

Bryson, Douglas (1957- )

British Correspondence Champion in 1983, 1984, and 1985.

Buchholz Score

The Buchholz Score, used by FIDE, is the sum of the score of each of the opponents of a player. It is used in tiebreaking of chess scores. The idea is that the same score is more valuable if achieved against players with better performances in a given tournament. In the U.S., it is known as the Solkoff Score.

Buck, Charles Francis (1841-1918)

Born in Durrheim, Grand Duch of Baden, Germany. He immigrated to the United States in 1852 with his parents, who settled in New Orleans. He was the city attorney of New Orleans from 1880 to 1884. He was a member of Congress from 1895 to 1897. In 1885 he was president of the New Orleans Chess Club and was selected to be the referee in the Zukertort-Steinitz match.

Buckle, Henry Thomas (1821-1862)

Winner of the first modern chess tournament, the Ries Divan knockout tourney of 1849. He spent his time writing History of Civilization in England, which he published in 1857 (volume 1). He was a British historian who studied 19 languages (he could speak seven languages and read twelve languages). He had a library of over 22,000 books. He died of typhoid fever in Damascus at the age of 40.

Buckle – Unknown, London 1840
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Nc3 e5 4.Bc4 Nc6 5.d3 Nge7 6.Bg5 Bg4 7.Nd5 Nd4 8.Nxe5 Bxd1?? (8...dxe5) 9.Nf6+ gxf6 10.Bxf7 mate 1-0

Bukic, Enver (1937- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1976). In 1975, he tied for 1st place at the Kostic Memorial in Vrsac.

Bukic – Damjanovic, Skopje 1967
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Bb7 5.Bg2 Be7 6.Nc3 Ne4 7.Bd2 O-O 8.d5 f5 9.Qc2 Bf6 10.Nxe4 fxe4 11.Qxe4 exd5 12.Qc2 Re8 13.O-O a5 14.cxd5 Rxe2 15.Rfe1 Rxe1+ 16.Rxe1 d6 17.Ng5 Bxg5 18.Bxg5 Qxg5 19.Qxc7 Nd7 20.Qxd7 1-0


German national team chess tournament. It is the strongest team championship in the world. Grandmasters from around the world are recruited to play in these team events and paid as much as $50,000.

Buoncompagni (Boncompagni), Giacomo (1548-1612)

Duke of Sora and Arce, and leading patron of chess in the 17th century. He was the illegitimate son of Pope Gregory XIII (Ugo Buoncompagni of Bologna). It was Pope Gregory who adopted the Gregorian calendar in 1582. Most of the great players of the period (such as Ruy Lopez and Polerio) played in his palace and were liberally rewarded for doing so. The King of Spain appointed Giacomo general in his army. Giacomo was made a cardinal and his father tried to make him king of Ireland.

Burger, Karl (1933-2000)

International Master (with two GM norms) who took last place in the 1969 U.S. Chess Championship, with 4 draws and 7 losses. He was a medical doctor and a former chess teacher to Bobby Fischer at the Manhattan Chess Club. He played chess in over 20 countries and 47 of the 50 states. In 1993 he won the Georgia State Championship.

Burger – Suttles, New York 1965
1.e4 d6 2.d4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.f4 Nf6 5.Nf3 c5 6.Bb5+ Bd7 7.e5 Ng4 8.e6 fxe6 9.Ng5 Bxb5 10.Qxg4 Bd7 11.Nxh7 Kf7 12.Ng5+ Kg8 13.Nxe6 cxd4 14.Qxg6 Bxe6 15.Qxe6+ Kf8 16.Ne4 1-0

Burgess, Graham (1968- )

FIDE master. In 1994, he set a world record for playing marathon blitz chess. He played 500 games in three days.

Burmakin, Vladimir (1967- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2590.

Burn, Amos (1848-1925)

One of the world’s top ten chess players between 1886 and 1912. He was a cotton broker and a sugar broker from Liverpool and remained an amateur chess player. He started his international chess career at the late age of 37. He edited a chess column in The Field from 1913 to 1925. He was a member of the Liverpool Chess Club from 1867 to 1925, serving as its president for many years. His nickname was Bulldog or “The Highwayman.” In 1871, he tied for 1st in the British Championship, but lost the play-off to Wisker. He was analyzing a chess game for his chess column when he died of a stroke.

Burn – Owen, Liverpool 1874
1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.Be3 Bg7 5.Be2 O-O 6.h4 Nc6 7.h5 e5 8.hxg6 fxg6 9.Nf3 Ng4 10.Bc4+ Kh8 11.Ng5 Bh6 12.Qxg4 Bxg4 13.Rxh6 Kg7 14.Rxh7+ 1-0

NN – Burn, England 1866
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nge7 4.c3 d5 5.Nxe5 dxe4 6.Qa4 Qd5 7.f4 Bd7 8.Nxd7 Kxd7 9.O-O Nf5 10.b4 a5 11.Kh1 axb4 12.Bxc6+ bxc6 13.Qxa8 Bc5 14.Qxh8 Ng3+ 15.hxg3 Qh5 mate 0-1

Butnorius, Algimantas (1946- )

International Master (1983) from Lithuania.

Bykhovsky, Avigdor (1955- )

Russian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2457.

Bykova, Yelizavyeta (1911-1989)

Women’s World Champion from 1953 to 1956, and from 1958 to 1962. From 1956 to 1958 she lost her title to Olga Rubtsova. In 1962 she lost her title to Nona Gaprindashvili. She was USSR Women’s champion in 1947, 1948, and 1950. She earned the Women’s Grandmaster title in 1976.

Byrne, Donald (1930-1976)

Winner of the 1953 US Open. He was on three US Olympiad teams (1962, 1964, 1968). He was an associate professor of English at Penn State University. He was inducted in the US Chess Hall of Fame in 2003. He became an International Master in 1962. He died of lupus at the age of 45.

Byrne, Robert (1928- )

Grandmaster (1964) and a graduate of Yale who became a philosophy teacher, then gave it up to become a chess professional. He won the 1972 U.S. Championship and was third place finisher at the 1973 Leningrad Interzonal (behind Karpov and Korchnoi). As a result, he became only the third American (after Fischer and Benko) to ever qualify for the Candidates. He was 45 at the time. He is a chess correspondent for the New York Times.

R. Byrne – Hurst, New York 1947
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.Nf3 Ngf6 6.Bd3 b6 7.Qe2 Be7 8.Bf4 Bb7 9.O-O-O Qc8 10.Ne5 h6 11.h4 a6 12.Rh3 Bd6 13.Rg3 Bf8 14.Re1 Qd8? (14...Nd5) 15.Nxf7! (15...Kxf7 16.Ng5+ Ke8 17.Bg6+ Ke7 18.Qxe6 mate) 1-0

cable match

The first cable match (moves transmitted by telegraph) was between the British Chess Club and the Manhattan Chess Club in 1895. In 1897 a cable match between the British House of Commons and the U.S. House of Representatives resulted in a draw. In 1899 a cable match between American universities and British universities took place. It was won by a single game by the British universities. Between 1896 and 1911, England and the USA played 13 cable matches. Each team had 6 wins each, and 1 tie. The total points were 64 to 64.

Cabrilo, Goran (1958- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegro (Yugoslavia). His FIDE rating is 2469. He took 40th-47th at the 1990 Manila Interzonal.

Cafe de la Regence (Coffee House)

Perhaps the most famous of coffee house where chess was played. This coffee house was opened up in Paris by an American in 1670. Chess players from Café Procope moved to the Café de la Regence. Around 1740 chess players gathered there to play chess. Players like Philidor, Morphy, Steinitz, Lasker, Capablanca, Alekhine, Legall, Deschappelles, Bourdonnais, Saint Amant, Franklin, Napoleon, Voltaire, Rousseau, Robespiere, Calvi and other played there until 1916, when the chess room was closed. Paul Morphy did not like the Café de la Regeance, calling it an ill frequented establishment.

Cafferty, Bernard (1934- )

British Boys’ Champion in 1952 and British Junior Champion in 1954. He was British Correspondence Champion in 1960 and 5-time British Lightning Champion from 1964 to 1969. He took part in every British championship from 1957 to 1970. Former editor of the British Chess Magazine.

Cafferty – Corbin, Birmingham, England 1963
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Ba5 6.d4 exd4 7.Qb3 Qe7 8.O-O Bb6 9.Ba3 d6 10.Bb5 Be6 11.Qa4 Bd7 12.cxd4 a6 13.Nc3 Qf6 14.e5 Qg6 15.exd6 cxd6 16.Rfe1+ Kd8 17.Nd5 Ba5 18.Bxc6 Bxe1 19Rxe1 1-0


The muse or goddess of chess, originally a wood-nymph, in a poem by Sir William Jones written in 1763 (and published in 1772) called Caissa. It was inspired by Vida’s Scacchia Ludus (written in 1513 and published in 1535), the poem that tells about the invention of chess by Mars.

Calvi, Ignazio (1797-1872)

Italian chess master and chess problem composer who stayed in France for 4 years as a political refugee. He was a leading player and teacher at the Cafe de la Regance. In 1845 he drew a match with Kieseritzky (7 wins, 7 losses, 1 draw) in one of the first chess matches ever held. He contributed a chess course to Le Palamede magazine. He returned to Italy in 1848 and joined the Army. He retired in 1862 as a major.

Calvo Minguez, Ricardo (1943-2002)

Spanish journalist, chess historian, medical doctor and International Master (1973) who was censured by FIDE for writing articles that were critical of the world chess federation. He played for Spain in 5 chess Olympiads. He died of cancer of the esophagus.

Calvo – Korchnoi, Havana 1966
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 5.Bd3 Bc5 6.Nb3 Ba7 7.c4 Na6 8.O-O Qh4 9.N1d2 Nge7 10.c5 Ne5 11.Be2 b6 12.f4 N5c6 13.Nc4 bxc5 14.g3 Qh6? (14...Qh3) 15.f5 Qf6 16.fxe6 Qxe6 17.Nd6+ Kf8 18.Bc4 1-0

Cambridge-Oxford match

Longest running annual match in chess. The traditional series began in 1873 with the help of future world champion Wilhelm Steinitz (won by Oxford 10-3). The 122nd varsity chess match was held in 2004. Cambridge is ahead in the series, 73 to 59.

Campomanes, Florencio (1927- )

First non-European elected FIDE President (1982-1995). He played Board 2 for the Philippines in the 1956 Olympiad in Moscow, the 1958 Olympiad in Munich, and was the top board for the Philippines in the 1960 Chess Olympiad. When he was elect FIDE President in 1982 the entire FIDE staff and FIDE secretary resigned in protest. His biggest controversy was the stopping of the Karpov-Kasparov match in February 1985. He graduated from Brown University.

Campora, Daniel (1957- )

Argentine Grandmaster (1986). He was Argentinian champion in 1986 and 1989. He led the Argentine team at the 1984 Chess Olympiad.

Campora – Eslon, Argentina 1991
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bb5 d6 5.d4 Bd7 6.O-O Be7 7.Re1 exd4 8.Nxd4 O-O 9.Bxc6 bxc6 10.Qf3 Re8 11.e5 Ng4 12.e6 1-0


Chess has been played in Canada since at least 1759. General Sir John Hale and General Wolfe played chess during the taking of Quebec in 1759. The Montreal Chess Club was founded in 1844. The Canadian Chess Association (CCA) was formed in 1872. The first Canadian Chess Champion was Albert Ensor (1873). The Canadian Correspondence Chess Association was founded in 1921. The CCA transformed into the Canadian Chess Federation (CCF) in 1932. The CCF transformed into the Chess Federation of Canada (CFC) in 1945.

Canal, Esteban (1896-1981)

Peruvian International Master (1950) who received an honorary Grandmaster title in 1977 at the age of 81. Canal lived in Venice, Italy since 1923, yet represented Peru as late as 1950 in the chess Olympiad.

Canal – Unknown, Leipzig 1916
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.Nc3 Nf6 5.Bg5 Bb4 6.Bd3 Nc6 7.Ne2 O-O 8.O-O Be7 9.Re1 Nb4 10.Ng3 Nxd3 11.Qxd3 c6 12.Nh5 Be6 13.Nf4 h6 (13...Ng4) 14.Bxh6 gxh6 15.Rxe6 fxe6? (15...Nd6) 16.Qg6+ Kh8 17.Nxe6 1-0

Canute (995-1035)

King of Denmark, Norway, and England from 1016 to 1035. He learned the game of chess during a visit to Rome in 1027. The king had a Danish earl murdered when the earl overturned a chessboard after the King made a bad move and tried to take it back.

Capablanca y Graupera, Jose Raoul (1888-1942)

Cuban-born, Capablanca was American-educated and sent to a private school (Woodycliff School of South Orange) in New Jersey when he was 16 in 1904. He joined the Manhattan Chess Club at that time and impressed many of the players. In 1906 he went to Columbia University in New York to study chemical engineering, he spent most of his time at the Manhattan Chess Club. Two years later he dropped out of Columbia University and dedicated most of his time to chess. In 1908-09 he toured the U.S. and lost only one game in hundreds of games played during simultaneous exhibitions, winning all the others. He won the New York state chess championship in 1910. In 1913 Capablanca obtained a post in the Cuban Foreign Office with the title of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary General from the Government of Cuba to the World at Large. After his divorce from his first wife, her family had him demoted to the post of Commercial Attaché. He once had the mayor of Havana clear a tournament room so that no one would see him resign a game (against Marshall in 1913). He once refused to pose with a beautiful film star, saying, "Why should I give her publicity?" Capablanca lost only 36 games out of 567 in his whole life. He did not lose a single game from 1916 to 1924. Capablanca never had a chess set at home. On March 7, 1942, he was seated at a chess board at the Manhattan Chess Club, watching a skittles game, when he suddenly toppled backwards from his chair. He had suffered a massive stroke (cerebral hemorrhage) and died later that night in a New York hospital. At the time of his death, he was the commercial attaché of the Cuban Embassy in New York. General Batista, President of Cuba, took personal charge of the funeral arrangements.

Reti – Capablanca, Berlin 1928
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 d6 4.c3 a6 5.Ba4 f5 6.d4 fxe4 7.Ng5 exd4 8.Nxe4 Nf6 9.Bg5 Be7 10.Qxd4 (10.Bxc6+) 10...b5 11.Nxf6+ gxf6 12.Qd5 bxa4 13.Bh6 Qd7 14.O-O Bb7 15.Bg7 O-O-O 16.Bxh8 Ne5 17.Qd1 Bf3! 18.gxf3 Qh3 (threatening 19...Rg8+) 0-1

Cardoso, Ruth (1934-2000)

Born in Salvador, Brazil on February 9, 1934. She held the title of Woman International Master (WIM) from FIDE. She won the South American Women’s Championship in 1966, 1969, and 1972. She won the Brazilian Women’s Championship eight times in a row. She played four time in the Woman’s Interzonal Championship. She played in five World Chess Olympiads, playing first board for the Brazilian team each time. She died on Feb 11, 2000.

Cards and chess

The division of cards into fours suits originated from chess. At one time, it was thought that cards were based in the Indian 4-handed chess (chaturanga).

Carlsen, Magnus (1990- )

Norwegian child prodigy who gained the Grandmaster title (2004) at the age of 13 years, 4 months and 26 days. He became the 2nd youngest GM in chess history, behind only Sergey Karjakin. He was trained by Simen Agdestein, Norway’s top chess player. He learned chess at the age of 8.

Carlsen – Ibraev, Calvia 2004
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 c5 5.dxc5 Bxc5 6.Nf3 Qb6 7.e3 Qc7 8.b3 b6 9.Bb2 Bb7 10.Nb5 Qd8 11.O-O-O O-O 12.Ng5 Re8 13.h4 e5 14.Nd6 Bxd6 15.Rxd6 h6 16.Qf5 Nc6 17.Rxf6 1-0

Caro, Horatio (1862-1920)

Born in Newcastle, England . He later moved to Berlin, Germany. He was the editor of the German chess magazine Bruderschraft. In 1886 he published analysis of the Caro-Kann (1.e4 c6) that he had analyzed with Marcus Kann (1820-1886). He lost matches to Simon Winawer and Jacques Mieses, drew two matches with Curt von Bardeleben, and defeated M. Lewitt.

Caro – Emanuel Lasker, Berlin 1890
1.Nf3 d5 2.d4 Bf5 3.c4 c6 4.Qb3 Qc8 5.cxd5 cxd5 6.Nc3 e6 7.Bf4 a6 8.Na4 Ra7 9.Nb6 Qd8 10.Bxb8 Qxb8 11.Qa4+ Ke7 12.Rc1 g5 13.Ne5 Nh6 14.Nc8+ 1-0

Carr, Neil (1968- )

Youngest player to beat a grandmaster in a clock simultaneous exhibition. In 1978 at the age of 10 he beat a grandmaster. He won the World under-14 championship.

Carroll, Charles (1737-1832)

The last survivor of the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence (he represented Maryland), and the only Roman Catholic signer. At age 89 he played the Turk automaton at Baltimore in 1827 and won. An “adjustment” to the machine and the Turk’s queen, which otherwise could have checkmated the next move, helped Carroll to win. Carrol died at the age of 95.

Carroll, Lewis (1832-1898)

Author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking-Glass (1872), the story of Alice and her journey as a pawn across the chessboard, eventually to become a Queen. The 32 pieces are identified as ‘Dramatis Personae’ at the start of the book. Each of them has some part in the story. Lewis Carroll referred the chess pieces as red and white, the usual colors of an ivory chess set. The illustrations were by John Tenniel, who based his illustrations on the St. George’s pattern, not the Staunton pattern. Carroll’s diaries mention chess on several occasions. His diaries indicate that he beat Lord Tennyson’s sons at chess and that he played chess on the train during his journey to Russia. His real name was Charles Lutwidge Dodgson. He was a mathematician and lectured at Oxford.

Cassel, Hartwig (1850-1929)

Born in Konitz, West Prussia and later moved to Scotland, where he was a member of the Glasgow Chess Club. From 1882 to 1889, he was the chess editor of the Bradford Observer Budget in England. He was a journalist for the New York Staats Zeitung, New York Tribune, : Sun, The Times, The World, and the Associated Press. He was the editor, along with Hermann Helms, of the American Chess Bulletin, which was first published in 1904.


Castling is the only time in the game when more than one piece may be moved during a turn. Castling can only occur if there are no pieces standing between the king and the rook. Neither king nor rook may have moved from its original position. There can be no opposing piece that could possible capture the king in his original square (you cannot castle while you are in check), the square he moves through, or the square that he ends the turn (you cannot castle into check). Castling was invented around the 1500s to speed up the game. Up until the mid 19th century, some rules of chess allowed you to castle, followed by moving the h pawn to h3. The verb castle (to castle) first appeared in a book by Beale in 1656. Earlier words for castling included exchange, change, leap, or shift. The record for the latest castling seems to be on move 48.

Caxton, William (1438-1491)

The first English printer. He is the publisher of the second book to be printed in English, The Game and Playe of the Chesse, in 1475. The book consisted of 72 pages, with no illustrations and printed in Bruges, Belgium. It also became the first printed book in English to make extensive use of woodcuts. The book was dedicated to George, Duke of Clarence, oldest brother of King Edward. It is a translation of a book by Jacobus de Cessolis. An original book is worth over $100,000. The first printed book in English is The Recuyell of the Historyes of Troye, published by Caxton in 1474.

Caze, M. (1650-1710)

Author of the first manuscript on the King’s Gambit, in 1706. It was his opinion that accepting the King’s Gambit would lead to a forced draw. He was the first to propose a type of random chess, by moving the king and queen around in the back rank. He also wanted to take away the advantage of the first move by playing the pawn only one square up. He was the first to record chess games played by other players, then reprint them. He recorded the games of the best chess players in Paris in the 1680s.


Correspondence Chess League of America. It is the oldest and largest postal chess organization in America and second oldest in the world. It was founded in 1909 (then known as the Correspondence Chess League of Greater New York) by a group of correspondence players who had been conducting postal chess tournaments since 1897. It publishes the largest correspondence chess magazine in the world, The Chess Correspondent, the oldest national magazine in the U.S. The CCLA had the first numerical rating of players in 1940.

Cebalo, Miso (1945- )

Yugoslav (now Croatia) Grandmaster (1985). He tied for 1st place in the 1985 Yugoslav championship, but lost the play-off to Marjanovic. He tied for 6th-7th in the 1985 Taxco Interzonal. He is currently rated 2511.

Cell Phone

In 2003, former world champion Ruslan Ponomariov was kicked out of a chess tournament because his cell phone rang during the course of a match. As per article 13.4 of the laws of chess, he was disqualified when his cell phone rang during a games against GM Evgeny Agrest of Sweden in a European Team Championship. Ponomariov was the first player to be penalized under this law at a major event. FIDE has banned players from carrying cell phones during chess matches as they can be used to receive advice on moves ad help access computer databases of moves online. In 2004, the same thing happened to woman national master and tournament top seed Christine Castellano at the Philippine National Chess Championship. Her phone rang in the middle of a match and she was disqualified. Also in 2004, Agrest himself was disqualified when his cell phone rang. There were rumors that Ponomariov was the one who called and said, “Now we are even.”

Cessolis, Jacobus de (1275-1322)

Dominican monk who wrote De Moribus Hominum ed de Officiis Nobilium Super Ludo Scaccorum (On the Customs of Men and Their Noble Actions with Reference to the Game of Chess). This is the best known of all chess moralities, written around 1300. The moralities deal with all sorts and conditions of men, allegorically represented in their various ranks by chess pieces. In 1474 William Caxton translated the French version into English and printed it under the title The Game of Chess. It was the second book printed in the English language (Caxton translated and published a history of Troy a few months earlier).

Chadwick, Henry (1824-1908)

Born in England, he later came to the USA as a journalist and sportswriter. He became one of the foremost authorities on baseball. In 1860 he edited The Beadle Baseball Player, the first baseball guide on public sale. He is considered the father of baseball. He was enshrined in baseball’s Hall of Fame in 1938, the only writer elected to the Hall itself. He was an avid chess player and was a member of every chess club in Brooklyn. He wrote a chess column in his own newspaper, the American Chronicle. He wrote Chess for Novices.

Chajes, Oscar (1873-1928)

Oscar Chajes (KHAH-yes) was born in Brody, Russia on December 14, 1873. In 1909 he was the winner of the US Open in Excelsior, Minnesota. He became secretary of the Isaac L. Rice Progressive Chess Club. In 1911, he took last place at Carlsbad. In 1916 he defeated Capablanca in New York (round 2) in 66 moves at the Rice Memorial tournament. Chajes took 3rd place, after Capablanca and Janowski. Capablanca would not lose another game until the 1924 New York tournament, where he lost to Reti. In 1917 he won the New York State championship in Rochester. He died on February 28, 1928.

Chandler, Murray (1960- )

Grandmaster (1983). He won the 1975-76 New Zealand championship, then settled in England. In 1981, he edited Tournament Chess. In 1984 he was joint Commonwealth Champion. In 1986, he was joint British Champion. From 1991 to 1999 he was editor of the British Chess Magazine.

Fedorowicz – Chandler, Brighton 1979
1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.Bc4 Bg7 5.Qe2 Nc6 6.e5 Nd7 7.e6 fxe6 8.Nf3 d5 9.Bb5 Nxd4 10.Nxd4 Bxd4 11.h4 c6 12.Bd3 e5 13.h5 e4 14.hxg6 hxg6 15.Rxh8+ Bxh8 0-1

Charbonneau, Pascal (1983- )

Grandmaster (2006) from Canada. He is a two-time Canadian champion (2002 and 2004). He was Quebec champion at the age of 16 and Canadian Champion at the age of 18. In 2005, he was mugged at gunpoint at the World Open in Philadelphia.

Charles, Ray (1930-2004)

Blind musician (born Ray Charles Robinson) who learned chess in 1965 after being busted twice and hospitalized for heroin addiction. He learned chess in the hospital where he went cold turkey after 17 years of drug use. He used a peg set made for the blind. He appeared on the cover of Chess Life in September 2002 and was interviewed by Larry Evans. Ray Charles stated that chess was his favorite game. One of his chess opponents was Willie Nelson, who mentioned Ray Charles’ chess skills at his funeral. He also played chess with Dizzy Gillespie. In the film, Ray, there is a scene of Ray Charles playing chess in the hospital with the doctor while recovering from his addiction. He died of liver disease.

Ray Charles – Larry Evans, Reno 2002
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.d4 exd4 5.Nxd4 Bc5 6.Nxc6 bxc6 7.Qe2 O-O 8.Be3 Bxe3 9.Qxe3 Re8 10.f3 d5 11.Qd3 a5 12.O-O-O Ba6 13.Qd2 Bxf1 14.Rhxf1 dxe4 15.Qxd8 Raxd8 16.Rxd8 Rxd8 17.Rd1 Rxd1+ 18.Kxd1 exf3 19.gxf3 Kf8 20.Kc1 Be7 21.Kd2 Ke6 22.Ke3 Nd5+ 23.Kd4 Nxc3 24.Kxc3 Kd5 0-1

Charlick, Henry (1845-1916)

Born in London on July 8, 1845. In 1887, he won the first championship of Australia, held in Adelaide. From 1887 to 1893, he was champion of South Australia. In the early 1890s, he introduced the moves 1.d4 e5, known as the Charlick Gambit or Englund Gambit. He died on July 26, 1916.

Charousek, Rudolf (1873-1900)

Chess master born in Prague and raised in Hungary. He learned to play chess in his early teenage years. He tied for 1st (with Chigorin) at Budapest in 1896 and won at Berlin in 1897. He died of tuberculosis at the age of 26.

Charousek – Makovets, Budapest 1893
1.e4 e5 2.f4 Bc5 3.Nf3 d6 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Ba5 6.Bc4 Bb6 7.d4 Bg4 8.fxe5 dxe5 9.Bxf7+ Kf8 10.Ba3+ Ne7 11.O-O exd4 12.Qb3 g6 13.Bxg6 1-0


The earliest chess precursor that can be clearly defined, dating back to the 7th century in India. The Sanskrit name means quadripartite, or four parts of an army – chariots, elephants, horses, and foot soldiers.

Chaucer, Geoffrey (1342-1400)

His romantic poem, Book of the Duchesse, written in 1369, has many references to chess. Chaucer was the first person to use the word checkmate, derived from Arabic. He introduced the word “fers” as the name for the queen chess piece.

Chauvenet, Louis Russell “Russ” (1920-2003)

U.S. Amateur Champion in 1959. In 1991, he won the fourth National Deaf Championship. He won the National Tournament of the Deaf in 1980, 1983, and 1987. In 1992, he was awarded the Grandmaster title in Silent Chess.


Up until the early 20th century, it was mandatory to announce a check. Up until the late 19th century, it was mandatory to say 'check to the queen' or 'gardez' when she was attacked. At one time, if the King and other piece were simultaneously attacked by a piece, it was customary to announce the fact by saying check to both pieces. Up until the early 19th century, an unannounced check could be ignored. In 1991, the game Wegner-Johnsen in Gausdal had 100 checks for White and 41 checks for Black, for a total of 141 checks in the game. In 1995, the game Rebickova-Voracova in the Czech Republic, ended with 74 checks by the black Queen.

Chekhov, Valery (1955- )

Russian Grandmaster . In 1975 he won the World Junior Championship. He became an IM in 1975 and a GM in 1984. He teaches chess at a children’s center in Moscow.

Chekhov – Razuvaev, Moscow 1982
1.Nf3 c5 2.c4 g6 3.d4 Bg7 4.e4 Nc6 5.dxc5 Qa5+ 6.Bd2 Qxc5 7.Nc3 Nf6 8.Be2 d6 9.O-O O-O 10.h3 Be6 11.Na4 1-0

Chekhover, Vitaly (1908-1965)

Soviet International Master (1950). He played in the USSR championship five times. He won the Leningrad championship in 1937 and 1949.

Cheparinov, Ivan (1986- )

Grandmaster (2004) from Bulgaria. His FIDE rating is 2634. He won the Bulgarian championship in 2004 and 2005 and was Topalov’s second. In 2005, he played games of 155 and 150 moves in consecutive rounds in the Corus (B) Tournament of 2005.

Chernev, Irving (1900-1981)

Chess master and author of 18 chess books. He learned chess at the age of 12 from his father. He played in the U.S. Championship in 1942 and 1944 and played in numerous New York state championships. He first chess book (with Fred Reinfeld) that he wrote was Chess Strategy and Tactics in 1933. He claimed he read more about chess and played over more chess games than anyone in history. He was employed in the paper industry. He died at the age of 81.

Chernin, Alexander (1960- )

Russian Grandmaster. He was European Junior Champion in 1979-1980. He tied for 1st place in the 1985 USSR Championship, but lost the play-off. In 1985, he tied for 4th-5th at the Tunis Interzonal. He became an IM in 1984 and a GM in 1985.


The purse from the Karpov-Kasparov 1986 London-Leningrad match ($900,000) was donated to the victims of the nuclear disaster in Chernobyl. The USSR Championship has being played in Kiev at the time of the Chernobyl accident. Over the past 15 years, Karpov had given over half a million dollars to the victims of Chernobyl and runs a Chernobyl Chess School for children.

Cheron, Andre (1895-1980)

French champion in 1926, 1927, and 1929 and one of the great endgame analysts and study composers of all time. He played Board 1 for France in the 1927 Olympiad. He created the longest problem solution to have all checks in it, taking 69 moves. He was an International Master in Chess Composition (1959).

Cheron – Polikier, Chamonix 1927
1.d4 g6 2.e4 Bg7 3.Nf3 d6 4.Nc3 Nd7 5.Bc4 Nf6? (5...Nb6) 6.e5 dxe5 7.dxe5 Nh5 8.Bxf7+ Kxf7 9.Ng5+ Kg8 10.Qd5+ (10...e6 11.Qxe6+ Kf8 12.Qf7 mate) 1-0


Chess is also known as ash-shatranj (Arabic), sittuyin (Burmese), sah (Croatian), sach (Czech), siang (Chinese), schak (Danish), echecs (French), schach (German), zatrikion (Greek), shitranj (Hindustani), sakk (Hungarian), scac (Icelandic), scacchi (Italian), shogi (Japanese), tiyang keni (Korean), scaci (Latin), chator (Malay), shatara (Mongol), shatranj (Parsi), chatrang (Persian), szach (Polish), xadrez (Portuguese), schamat (Russian), chaturanga (Sanskrit), ajedrez (Spanish), schack (Swedish), makruk (Thai), chandaraki (Tibetan), and skaki (Turkish).


Chess computer program written at Northwestern University by David Slate and Larry Atkin. In February 1977, it won the Minnesota Open Championship. In August 1977, it won the second World Championship. In September 1977, it achieved a 2000 rating in a tournament in London. On September 18, 1977 it was the first computer to beat a grandmaster when it defeated GM Michael Stean in London.

CHESS the magazine

British monthly chess magazine published by Sutton Coldfield, England since 1935. It changed its name to Pergamon Chess in 1988, then to Macmillan Chess in 1989. Now it is back to Chess. B.H. Wood owned and edited it for 53 years.

CHESS the musical

Most expensive musical play ever put together, costing over $4 million in 1986. The musical was written by Tim Rice in 1984 and music by Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus (formerly of ABBA). The musical revolves around the romantic triangle of an American chess champion, his girlfriend, and a Russian opponent. A Broadway production opened in 1988, but it lost 6 million dollars and closed after only 68 performances.


The rules of Chess960 are mostly the same as orthodox chess, but the setup is different. The pawns begine where they always do. The pieces are arranged at random, with the proviso that bishops must end up on opposite colors, and the king is set up between the two rooks. The black pieces are lined up to mirror the white pieces. That makes for 960 different starting positions in the game. The point of Chess960 is to free chess from memorization and book moves. Bobby Fischer unveiled this chess variant at a 1996 press conference in Buenos Aires. The variant is also called Fischer Random Chess.


The first chessboard of alternating light and dark squares appear in Europe in 1090.

Chess Fever (Shakmatnaya Goryachka)

The most important chess film of the silent era. It was made in Moscow in 1925, produced and directed by Vsevolod Pudovkin (and starring his wife, Anna Zemtzova). Chess players such as world champion Jose Capablanca, Richard Reti, Frederick Yates, Frank Marshall, Seveilly Tartakower, Gideon Stahlberg, Rudolf Spielmann, Ernst Gruenfeld, and Carlos Torre were in the film. It was the first film to deal exclusively with chess. The film was made during the great Moscow International Tournament in 1925. The main character is played by actor Vladimir Fogel, who is addicted to chess. His fiancé believes that chess is the greatest menace to a happy domestic life and wants him to quit playing chess. She runs into Capablanca and tells him how chess has made her hate the world. Capablanca says: “I understand how you feel . I cannot stand the thought of chess when I am with a lovely lady.”

Chess is My Life

Title of an autobiography by both Karpov (1981) and Korchnoi (1977).

Chess Life

Chess Life magazine first appeared as the official publication of the United States Chess Federation (USCF) on September 5, 1946. Its first editor was Montgomery Major. A single issue cover price was 15 cents in the 1940s and 1950s. In 1969 it merged with Chess Review (1933-1969), which was edited by Isaac Kashdan, and was called Chess Life and Review. In 1980 it reverted back to Chess Life.

Chess Made Easy

The first American published book on chess. It was published in 1802 in Philadelphia by James Humphreys. It contained the rules of chess, games from Philidor and Cunningham, origins of chess, anecdotes, and the Morals of Chess by Benjamin Franklin.

Chess players

The World Chess Federation (FIDE) estimates there are 600 million chess players in the world

Chess Player’s Chronicle

England’s first successful chess magazine. Its original name was British Miscellany. Howard Staunton was its editor from 1841 to 1856 (two series). In 1859-1862 it was edited by Kolisch and Zytogorsky. The magazine stayed in existence until 1902.

Chess Review magazine

Chess Review first appeared in January, 1933. The first Editor in Chief was Isaac Kashdan. I.A. Horowitz was the associated editor. Otto Wurzburg was the problem editor. Fritz Brieger was the business manager. Contributing editors included Fred Reinfeld, Arthur Dake, Reuben Fine, Donald MacMurray, Barnie Winkleman, Lester Brand. A year later, the Editor in Chief was I.A. Horowitz. Cost was 25 cents an issue or $2.50 annually. It was known as the picture chess magazine. In 1969 it was sold to the US Chess Federation and merged with Chess Life magazine to become Chess Life and Review. In 1980, Chess Life and Review reverted to its old name of Chess Life.

Chess sets

In 1971, a chess set landed an antiques dealer, Trevor Stowe, in court in London for indecent exhibition while on display in the window. Each of the 32 pieces showed couples in sexual positions. The dealer had to pay $132 in fines and court costs.

: Chess World

First English-language chess magazine published in a non-English-speaking country. It was edited by George Koltanowski in Belgium in 1932-33.

Chevalier, Frederick (1907- )

In 1927, he won the Boston Chess Championship. He was a former Harvard College Champion. He wrote a chess column in The Christian Science Monitor.

Chiburdanidze, Maya (1961- )

Six-time World’s women champion for 13 years, from 1978 until her defeat by Xie Jun of China in 1991. Her coach had been Eduard Gufeld. She was USSR women’s champion at 15, won the women’s Interzonal at 16, defeated three of the best women in the world (Alexandria, Akhmilovskaya, and Kusnir) in matches at 17, and world champion (defeating Gaprindashvili) at age 17, the youngest of any world champion in chess. She was awarded the title of International Woman Master in 1974 at the age of 13, making her the youngest title holder in the history of chess up to that time. She didn’t even have a FIDE rating.

Muara – Chiburdanidze, Argentina 1978
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Bb4 6.f3 O-O 7.Be3 e5 8.Nb3 d5 9.Bc5? (9.Bd2) 9...Bxc5 10.Nxc5 d4 11.Ne2 Qa5+ (and 12...Qxc5) 0-1

Chigorin, Mikhail (1850-1908)

Founder of the Russian school of chess. He was the first public chess worker, organizer, and journalist in Russia. His first chess magazine, Chess Sheet, only had 250 subscribers in all of Russia. From 1878 to 1907 he was considered the best Russian chess player. In 1889 he unsuccessfully challenged Steinitz for the world championship in Havana, which ended after 17 games and only one draw (the last game). Steinitz had won 10 and lost 6. A month later Chigorin won America's first international tournament, New York 1889. He took second place in the Hastings 1895 tournament (behind Pillsbury) and won the first three All-Russia tournaments (1899, 1900-01, 1903). At Hastings 1895 he won a ring and a copy of Salvoli's The Theory and Practice of Chess for winning the most Evans Gambits. In 1958 the USSR issued a chess stamp with a portrait of Chigorin. He learned chess at age 16 (some sources say he learned chess in his early 20s).

Schlezer – Chigorin, St Petersburg 1878
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f5 3.exf5 Nc6 4.Bb5 Bc5 5.Bxc6 dxc6 6.Nxe5 Bxf5 7.Qh5+ g6 8.Nxg6 hxg6 9.Qxh8 Qe7+ 10.Kd1 Bxf2 11.Qxg8+ Kd7 12.Qc4 Re8 (threatening 13...Qe1+ 14.Rxe1 Rxe1 mate) 0-1

Chigorin – Walbrodt, Budapest 1896
1.e4 e5 2.f4 d5 3.Nf3 dxe4 4.Nxe5 Bd6 5.Qe2 Qe7 6.Qxe4 f6 7.d4 fxe5 8.fxe5 c6 9.Bc4 Bc7 10.O-O Be6 11.Bg5 Qxg5 12.Bxe6 Nh6 13.Bc8 1-0

Chikvaidze, Alexander (1932- )

Replaced former cosmonaut Vitaly Sevastianov in 1986 as President of the Soviet Chess Federation. He was a Georgian career diplomat who served as former Ambassador to Kenya and the Netherlands. He was assigned to the Soviet consulate in San Francisco and embassies in London and New Delhi.


The Chinese Emperor Wen-ti executed two foreign chess players after learning that one of the pieces was called "Emperor." He was upset that his title of Emperor could be associated with a mere game and forbade the game. Chinese chess is played on a board 9 squares by 8 and the pieces move on the intersections of the lines rather than the squares, so that the actual playing area is 10 by 9. One of the pieces as a cannon, unknown anywhere else. Chess was not listed as a competitive sport in China until 1956. The Chess Association of China was formed in 1966. It didn't have its first championship tournament until 1974. The first international tournament ever held in China was in 1980.

Christiansen, Larry (1956- )

Player who become an International Grandmaster without ever being an International Master first. In 1977 he was awarded the title after winning an international tournament in Torremolinos, Spain (he took 2nd place in the same tournament a year before). He is also the first junior high school player to win the National High School Championship in 1971. He won it again in 1973. He won the U.S. Junior Championship in 1973, 1974, and 1975. He won the US Chess Championship in 1980, 1983, and 2002. He took 2nd place in the World Junion Championship in 1975 (won by Valery Chekhov). He has been runner-up to the US championship four times. In the 1980s he was sponsored by Church’s Fried Chicken to play simultaneous and blindfold exhibitions throughout the United States.

Christiansen – Karpov, Wijk aan Zee 1993
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.a3 Ba6 5.Qc2 Bb7 6.Nc3 c5 7.e4 cxd4 8.Nxd4 Nc6 9.Nxc6 Bxc6 10.Bf4 Nh5 11.Be3 Bd6? (11...Bc5) 12.Qd1 (threatening 13.Qxd6 and 13.Qxh5) 1-0

Chuchelov, Vladimir (1969- )

Grandmaster from Russia who now lives in Belgium. His peak Elo rating has been 2608.

Churchill, Lord Randolph (1849-1895)

Winston Churchill's father was elected vice president of the British Chess Federation in 1885. Lord Tennyson was the President of the British Chess Federation. He took chess lessons from Zukertort and William (Wilhelm) Steinitz. He was the co-founder of the Oxford University Chess Club. He was one of the financial backers of the great 1883 London tournament, won by Zukertort. In 1891 he was the first president of the Johannesburg Chess Club in South Africa. He was a member of Parliament and served as the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Cifuentes-Parada, Roberto (1957- )

Grandmaster from Chile. He was the champion of Chile in 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, and 1986. He now plays for Spain.

Ciocaltea, Victor (1932-1983)

Romanian chess player who became an International Master in 1957 and took 21 years to become a Grandmaster in 1978. He won the Romanian championship 8 times during 1952-1979.

Hutemann – Ciocaltea, Dortmund 1974
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 g6 4.h3 Bg7 5.Nf3 Nh6 6.Bd3 O-O 7.O-O f6 8.Bf4 Nf7 9.e5 fxe5 10.Bxe5 Nxe5 11.dxe5 Nd7 12.Re1 Nc5 13.b4 Ne6 14.Ne2 Rxf3 15.gxf3 Ng5 16.f4 Nxh3+ 17.Kg2 Qf8 18.Kg3? (18.Qd2) 18...Bxe5 (19.fxe5 Qxf2 mate) 0-1

Ciric, Dragoljub (1935- )

Yugoslav (now Croatia) Grandmaster (1965).

Ciric – Velimirovic, Yugoslavia 1963
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bc4 e6 7.a3 b5 8.Ba2 Bb7 9.Qe2 Nbd7 10.O-O Rc8 11.Bg5 h6 12.Bh4 Qb6 13.Rad1 Be7 14.Kh1 g5 15.Bg3 Ne5 16.f4 gxf4 17.Rxf4 Rg8 18.Bh4 Ng6 19.Rxf6 Nxh4 20.Rxf7 Rxc3 21.bxc3 Rxg2 22.Qh5 Bxe4 23.Rxe7+ 1-0

Clarke, Peter (1933- )

English player who placed 2nd in five British Championships. He played on 8 English Chess Olympiad teams. He was British Correspondence Champion in 1977. He became a Grandmaster in Correspondence Chess in 1980.

Clarke – Toran, Hastings 1956
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.f4 e5 7.Nf3 Nbd7 8.Bc4 Be7 9.a4 O-O 10.Qe2 b6 11.O-O Bb7 12.fxe5 dxe5 13.Bg5 Nh5 14.Rad1 Bc5+ 15.Kh1 Qc7 16.Rxd7 Qxd7 17.Nxe5 Qc7 18.Nxf7 g6 19.Nd5 Bxd5 20.Bxd5 Ra7 21.Nd6 Kg7 22.Rxf8 1-0

Clean Score

A perfect 100% score. Capablanca achieved perfect scores three times: New York 1910 (7-0), New York 1913 (13-0), and New York 1914 (11-0

). Fischer won the 1963 US Championship 11-0

, defeated Taimanov 6-0 and Larsen 6-0 in the Candidates matches. Other clean scores include 1865 Berlin won by Neumann (34-0), 1899 Dutch championship won by Atkins (15-0), 1933 Folkestone Women’s World Championship won by Menchik (14-0), 1937 Stockholm Women’s World Championship won by Menchik (14-0), 1893 New York won by Emanuel Lasker (13-0).

Clock, Chess

The first mechanical chess clock was invented by Thomas Wilson in 1883. Prior to that, sandglasses were used. Sandglasses were first used in London in 1862. The first U.S. patent for a chess clock was issued in 1884 to Amandus Schierwater. The present day push-button clock was first perfected by Veenhoff in 1900. The first electronic chess clock was manufactured in Kiev in 1964.

Club, Chess

The world's first chess club was organized in Italy in 1550. The first chess club in England was Slaughter's Coffee House, founded in London, England in 1715. The oldest chess club in Europe is the Zurich Chess Club, founded in 1809. The first chess club with permanent quarters opened in Manhattan in 1801. The oldest chess club in the U.S. is the Mechanics Institute, organized in 1854 in San Francisco. It was destroyed by earthquake and fire in 1906 and rebuilt in 1909. The Manhattan Chess Club in New York was founded in 1878 and is the oldest chess club in continuous existence. Russia's first chess club was organized by Tchigorin in 1880. The largest chess club in the U.S. is the Labate Chess Centre in Anaheim, California with about 400 members.

Cochrane, John (1798-1878)

Scottish master and lawyer who spent half his life in India. He played chess in London while on vacation. In 1815 he was a second lieutenant on the HMS Bellerophon, which transported Napoleon to his last exile on the island of Helena. In 1822 he published his Treatise on Chess. In 1824, just before he went to India, he suggested that the London team play 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 (Scotch Opening) in their correspondence match with Edinburgh. In 1829 he wrote a book on the Muzio Gambit, published in India. Cochrane is credited with the Cochrane Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nxf7).

Cochrane – Staunton, London 1842
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 Nxd4 4.Nxe5 Ne6 5.Bc4 c6 6.O-O Nf6 7.Nc3 Bb4 8.f4 Qa5 9.Nxf7 Kxf7 10.f5 Qc5+ 11.Kh1 Qxc4 12.fxe6+ Qxe6 13.Qh5+ g6 14.Qh4 Bxc3 15.bxc3 Rf8 16.Bh6 1-0

Code breakers and chess

During World War II some of the top chess players were also code breakers. British masters Harry Golombek, Stuart Milner-Barry and C. H. O'D. Alexander was on the team which broke the Nazi Enigma code. In September 1939, the British chess team had just qualified for the finals in the Buenos Aires Olympiad. When war broke out, they were ordered home on the next ship out. During one watch keeping at night, Milner-Barry sent out an alarm to the rest of the ship when he thought he spotted a U-boat. It turned out to be a porpoise.

Cohen, Lewis

Lewis Cohen never lost a game in the National Elementary Championships, scoring 40-0. He was the 1974 and 1975 Junior High School champion.

Colle, Edgar (1897-1932)

Six time Belgium champion between 1922 and 1929. He died after an operation for a gastric ulcer. The Colle System is 1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.e3.


The first college chess club in America may be the Yale Chess Club, who had a delegate to the first American Chess Congress in 1857. The first known intercollegiate chess team match occurred in 1859 between Amherst and Williams colleges. The first international tournament restricted to college students was held in Liverpool, England in 1952. The first official college student Olympiad chess tournament was held in Oslo in 1954.

Collijn, Ludwig (1878-1939)

Swedish author and organizer. He was President of the Swedish Chess Association from 1917 to 1939. He organized and directed the 1937 Stockholm Chess Olympiad. He, and his brother Gustaf (1880-1968), wrote Larobok i Schack, a book on openings and endings.

Collins, John (Jack) W. (1912-2001)

Chess teacher to Bobby Fischer, Robert Byrne, William Lombardy, Donald Byrne, Sal Matera, Ray Weinstein, Lisa Lane, and Rachel Crotto. He has won the U.S. Correspondence Chess Championship (1943), the Marshall Chess Club Championship (1953), and the New York Championship (1952). He was the first postal chess editor of Chess Review. He reached the finals of the first ICCF World Chess Championship in 1953. His first house was on Hawthorne Street in Brooklyn, so he named his chess club that met at his house, the Hawthorne Chess Club. He kept that name when he moved to 91 Lenox Road.

Column, Chess

The first newspaper to publish a chess column was the Liverpool Mercury. The chess column appeared on July 9, 1813 and ended on August 20,1814. Egerton Smith (1774-1841), founder of the Mercury in 1811, wrote the chess column from July 9, 1813 to August 20, 1814. The first chess column to appear in a magazine was written by George Walker for the Lancet in 1823. Due to a lack of popularity, it disappeared after less than a year. The first column to establish itself was that of George Walker in Bells Life. It ran from 1834 to 1873. The oldest column still in existence is that of the Illustrated London News, which first appeared on June 25, 1842. Howard Staunton was its chess columnist from 1845 to 1878. The first American chess column appeared in 1845 in the New York Spirit of the Times. It was written by Stanley.

Commons, Kim (1951- )

1971 California State Chess Champion. He won the American Open in 1974 and 1975. In 1976 he became an International Master. He taught chess to Mel Brooks and to all the band members in Jefferson Airplane. He became a real estate agent.


The first chess effort on the part of a computer is a mate in 2 programmed in 1949 on a Ferranti digital machine. The first computer program that played proper chess was written at MIT by Alex Bernstein in 1959. The Massachusetts Amateur Championship marked the first time a chess computer played chess against human beings under tournament conditions in 1967. MacHack VI, from MIT, ended up with a 1239 provisional rating. The first chess tournament in which the only players were computer programs was held in New York in 1970. There were 6 computer programs competing. The event was won by a CDC 6400 computer (CHESS 3.0) located at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. The first world computer championship was held in Stockholm in 1974 and won by the Soviet program, KAISSA. Cray Blitz was the first chess computer to win a state chess championship when it won the Mississippi Championship in 1981. 1983 was the first time a microcomputer beat a master in tournament play. 1983 was the first time a computer gained an established master's rating. In May, 1997 DEEP BLUE defeated world champion Garry Kasparov in a match. In 2005, HYDRA defeated Michael Adams, #7 in the world, with 5 wins and 1 draw. In August, 2005, the program Zappa won the 13th World Computer Chess Championship in Rejkjavik.

Conquest, Stuart (1967- )

Grandmaster from England. In 1981, he won the World Under 16 Championship. He won the 76th Hastings International Chess Congress in 2000/2001. His FIDE rating is 2503.


A composition term for an alternative key not intended by the composer. Named after Eugene Cook (1830-1915) of Hoboken, New Jersey, who was so expert a solver, and found second or more solutions to so many problems, that his name came to signify the act.

Cook Eugene Beauharnais (1830-1915)

The foremost American problemist of his day. He had many of his chess problems published in Staunton’s The Chess Player’s Chronicle, and The Illustrated London News. Cook served as President of the New Jersey Chess Association and assumed the post for problem department in The Chess Monthly. At the time, Paul Morphy was the editor of the games section. In 1859 he wrote American Chess-Nuts, a major work of chess problems in America. He personally composed around 800 problems.

Cook, Nathaniel

Designer (along with John Jacques) of the Staunton chessmen in 1835. He registered his design in 1849. Howard Staunton recommended the use of these chessmen six months later and it was offered to the public by the company of John Jaques of London. Cook did not renew his registration, valid for only three years. In 1852 Staunton made a deal with Cook to authorize Staunton's signature as a trademark to attach to the boxes in which his sets were sold. Cook was Staunton’s editor at the Illustrated London Times. Cook's firm was absorbed by John Jaques and Son, Ltd in 1900.

Cooke, H. I.

Author of the first chess book written by a woman, The ABC of Chess, by a Lady. It appeared in England in 1860 and went into 10 editions.

Correspondence Chess

The first reputed correspondence game of chess was played in 1119 by King Henry I of England and King Louis VI of France. The earliest postal game was between players in Brada and The Hague in 1824. The first well known correspondence challenge was the Edinburgh – London chess club match, from 1824 to 1828. The match was scheduled to continue until three decisive games were completed. Draws did not count (there were 2 draws). Edinburgh won, 2-1. In 1870 the first correspondence chess club, the Caissa Correspondence Club, was founded. In 1888 the first international correspondence tournament was held. Most correspondence games played at once is 1000 by Robert Wyller. In 1883 Cambridge University played a correspondence match with the Bedlam insane asylum. Bedlam won. The only two U.S. Correspondence Grandmasters are Hans Berliner and Victor Palciauskas. Both have been world correspondence champions. The highest rated USCF correspondence player was Penquite at 2927 (won 49 games straight, no losses, and no draws). During World War II, no postal chess play was allowed between civilians and servicemen in the United States and Canada. Soldiers overseas were not allowed to play postal chess due to censorship restrictions.

Corzo, Juan (1873-1941)

Born in Madrid and was Cuban chess champion in 1902. In 1901, Jose Capablanca, age 12, beat Juan Corzo, age 28, in an informal match in Havana.

Cox, James R.

Winner of the first New York State Championship in 1878.

Cozio, Carlo Francesco (1715-1780)

Italian Count of Montiglio and Count of Salabue. He was the author of a two volume chess book, Il giuoco degli scacchi o sia Nuova idea di attacchi, difese e partiti del Giuoco degli Scacchi, published in 1740. The Ruy Lopez variation 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nge7 is called Cozio’s Defense.

Cramer, Fred (1912-1989)

Former USCF Membership chairman and USCF President (1961-1964). In the 1970s, he was the FIDE vice-president. He was Bobby Fischer’s manager during the 1972 World Championship Match. He was a lighting contractor. He got involved in chess when he provided better lighting to the 1953 US Open in Milwaukee. When Cramer died in 1989, he bequeathed $250,000 to the American Chess Foundation.

Cramling, Pia (1963- )

Grandmaster from Sweden. From 1983 to 1985 she was the world number one female chess player. Her brother, Dan, is a former Swedish national champion. She won the Women’s Chess Oscar in 1983. She is married to Juan Bellon and they live in Spain. She was awarded the WGM title in 1982, the IM title in 1983, and the GM title in 1992.

Skripchenko – P. Cramling, Belgrade 1996
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Qb6 6.e5 Bc5 7.Be3 Nd5 8.Nxd5 exd5 9.Nf5 Qxb2 10.Bxc5 Qc3+ 11.Ke2 Qxc5 12.Nd6+ Kf8 13.f4 Nc6 14.Kf3 (14.Qd3) 14...f6 15.Nxc8 (15.c4) 15...fxe5 16.fxe5 Nxe5+ 17.Kf4?? (17.Ke2) 17...Rxc8 18.Kxe5 Re8+ 19.Qf3 Qe7 (threatening 29...g6 mate) 0-1

Cray Blitz

The first computer to win a state championship (Mississippi in 1981). It won with 5 wins and no losses. Its first rating was 2258, running on a Cray-1 computer. At the time, it was the world’s fastest computer (80 million instructions per second). Cray Blitz was the World Computer Chess Championship from 1983 to 1989. The program was written by Robert Hyatt and Albert Gower, both of the University of Southern Mississippi. The chess program “Crafty” is a direct descendent of Cray Blitz.

Crisan, Alexandru (1962- )

Grandmaster (1997) from Romania. His FIDE rating is listed as 2588. He is President of the Romanian Chess Federation. In 2001, he was accused of faking his Elo rating of 2635 (number 33 in the world). He was accused of bribing other players for Elo points. He was accused of fixing matches for his own benefit and falsifying chess tournament results. He played in one tournament, the Vidmar Memorial in Slovakia, and score only ½ point out of 9.

Crittenden, Kit (1935- )

On August 29, 1948 Kit Crittenden won the North Carolina state championship at age 13, becoming the nation's youngest state champion. The year before, he finished in last place in the state championship.


A Croatian legend is that the Croatian king Suronja beat the Venetian doge in a chess game for a number of Croatian islands. The Croatian coat of arms was supposed to have been evolved from the chess board of 64 squares. The first written trace of chess in Croatia dates to 1385. A Croatian merchant had an inventory of a small table and a chess set. Correspondence chess was being played between Croatian and Venetian merchants as early as 1650. The first Croatian chess column appeared in 1875. The first chess tournament was played in Zagreb in 1886. The first Croation chess club was founded on March 11, 1886. The first chess book published in Croatia occurred in 1893. The first book in Croatian was published in 1909.The Croatian Chess Federation was formed in 1912.

Crotto, Rachel (1958- )

In 1972 she was one of the youngest girls ever to play in the U.S. Women's championship, at age 13. She was U.S. Women’s Champion from 1977 to 1979. She took 12th-13th place at the 1979 Rio de Janeiro Women’s Interzonal. She took last place in the 1982 Bad Kissingen Interzonal for the Women’s World Chess Championship.

Crum, John (1842-1922)

First Scottish chess champion. He won the event, held in Glasgow, in 1884. He edited a chess column in The Glasgow Weekly Herald.

Csom, Istvan (1940- )

Istvan Csom (Chom) was born in Hungary and became a Hungarian Grandmaster in 1973. He won the Hungarian championship in 1972 and, jointly, in 1973. His FIDE rating is 2463. In 1976, he took 9th-11th at the Biel Interzonal Tournament (won by Larsen).


In 1952 there was an international tournament in Havana. During the event, there was a revolution in Cuba. The President who sponsored the tournament was deposed. The Mexican entrants were recalled by their government. Finally, the Cuban champion, Juan Quesada, playing in the event died of a heart attack. His funeral was attended by all the masters participating. In 1965 Cuba linked up to the Marshall Chess Club in New York by telex to allow Fischer to play in the Capablanca Memorial tournament being held in Havana. Each game lasted up to seven hours. After the event, Cuba had to pay the bill of over $10,000. Dr Jose Raul Capablanca, son of the late World Champion, transmitted the move in Havana. Cuba spent over $5 million on the 1966 Olympiad held in Havana. Castro played several exhibition games including a draw with Grandmaster Tigran Petrosian. The first open international tournament held in Cuba took place in 1992 to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Havana as the capital of the island. Chess came to Cuba with Columbus. Chess is mentioned as being played in Cuba in 16th century books.

Cvitan, Ognjen (1961- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1987). In 1981 he won the World Junior (Under 20) Championship, ahead of Nigel Short and Salov. His name is pronounced Og-nhien Cvhie-than. His highest rating has been 2633, ranked 69th in the world in 1994.

Cvitan – Short, Mexico City 1981
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.a3 c5 5.d5 Ba6 6.Qc2 exd5 7.cxd5 Bb7 8.e4 Qe7 9.Bd3 Nxd5 10.O-O Nc7 11.Nc3 Qd8 12.Nd5 Ne6 13.Ne5 Nc6 14.f4 Nxe5 15.fxe5 Be7 16.Qe2 h6 17.Qh5 Rf8 18.Bxh6 gxh6 19.Rxf7 Rxf7 20.Rf1 Ng5 21.Bc4 Kf8 22.Rxf7+ Nxf7 23.Nf6 1-0


In 1910 the Cyprus Chess Association was founded and the first Cyprus chess championship took place. In 1962 Cyprus scored the worst score of any Chess Olympiad team. At Varna the team went 0 for 20 and one of their players, Ioannidis also went 0 for 20. Their team only won 2 games, drew 2 games, and lost 76 games. In 1964 at the Tel Aviv Olympiad. Ionnidis lost all his games (4) and Cyprus, again, took last place, drawing 1 and losing 13. Their team won 5 games, drew 4 games, and lost 47 games.

Czerniak, Moshe (1910-1984)

International Master (1952) and Israel’s first professional chess player. He was born in Poland, immigrated to Palestine, lived in Argentina after World War II broke out, and finally settled in Israel in 1950. He won the championship of Palestine in 1936 and the championship of Israel in 1955. He won the championship of Israel in 1974 at the age of 64.

Czerniak – Constantinou, Lugano 1968
1.e4 c5 2.b3 Nf6 3.e5 Nd5 4.Bb2 d6 5.exd6 exd6 6.Na3 Nc6 7.Nc4 Nf6 8.Nf3 Be7 9.d4 O-O 10.d5 Nb4 11.Ne3 Re8 12.Be2 Bd7 13.O-O Bf8 14.Re1 Ne4 15.a3 Na6 16.Bxa6 bxa6 17.Qd3 Rb8 18.Nf1 Bf5 19.Qxa6 c4 (19...Re7) 20.Qxc4 Rc8 21.Qd4 Rxc2? (21...Qd7) 22.Ne3 (23...Rxb2 24.Nxf5, threatening 25.Qxb2 and 25.Rxe4) 1-0

Dadian (Salome Dadian de Mingrelie) (1848-1913)

Prince of Mingrelia and sponsor of the 1903 Monte Carlo tournament. He invited Tchigorin to play but later paid him 1,500 francs (greater than 3rd prize money) not to play because Tchigorin had published analysis of one of the Prince's games, pointing out he had made gross errors. A valuable art object was to go to the winner of a short match between the 1st and 2nd place finishers (Tarrasch and Maroczy). The players wanted a play for money also. This annoyed the Prince who gave the art object to the 3rd place finisher (Pillsbury).

Dake, Arthur (1910-2000)

Arthur Dake became a bridge toll collector, then a highway auto controller, and finally an automobile inspector for the state of Oregon after serving in the merchant marines when he was 16. He and Humphrey Bogart used to make a living hustling chess at Coney Island. In three chess Olympiads, he won 27 games and only lost four games, winning a gold medal and the best result of any individual player at Warsaw 1935. He was given the International Master title in 1954. He received the honorary Grandmaster title in 1986 in recognition of his results in the 1930s. He was the oldest competitive chess grandmaster in history. He learned chess at 17. At 20 he won the Marshall Chess Club Championship.

Dake – Schmitt, Seattle 1949
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.f3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nb6 6.Be3 Bg7 7.Nc3 O-O 8.f4 Nc6 9.d5 Nb8 10.Nf3 e6 11.Bc5 Re8 12.d6 N6d7 13.Ba3 cxd6 14.Bxd6 Qb6 15.Qd2 e5 16.Bc4 exf4? (16...Bh6) 17.Bxf7 Kxf7 18.Ng5+ (18...Kg8 19.Qd5+ Kh8 20.Nf7+ Kg8 21.Nh6+ Kh8 22.Qg8+ Rxg8 23.Nf7 mate) 1-0

Daly, Harlow B. (1883-1979)

Perhaps the oldest person to win a state chess championship. In 1968 he won the Championship of Maine at age 85. He had previously won in 1961 at the age of 77 and in 1965 at the age of 81. He played in the New England Open every year from 1908 (when he won it) to 1971. He won the Massachusetts State Championship in 1940 and 1942. He was still playing chess in his 90s. At 90, in 1973, he won a New Hampshire Open tournament with a perfect 5-0 score. He died at the age of 95. He played chess for 75 years. He won the championships of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine.

Damiani, Petrus (Peter) (1007-1072)

Cardinal bishop of Ostia, Italy who wrote to Pope Alexander II in 1061 urging the pope to forbid chess from the clergy and to punish a bishop in Florence for wasting his time playing chess in the evenings. Damiani associated the game with frivolity and the sin of gambling.

Damiano, Pedro (1470-1544)

Portuguese apothecary (pharmacist) and author of Questo Libro e da imparare giocave a scachi et de li partiti, the first chess (modern chess) book in Italy. It was published in Rome and written in Italian and Spanish in 1512. It was the first bestseller of the modern game of chess. It went through eight editions in 50 years, first being published in Rome. The book has ten chapters and 124 pages, 89 of which deal with 72 problems and studies. The book contained chess advice and introduced the smothered mate. In the book, Damiano suggested that chess was invented by Xerxes, and called the game of chess Axedrez, which is the Spanish word for chess today. 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f6 is called Damiano’s Defense. There were no new chess works from Damiano’s book until Ruy Lopez wrote his book in 1561, almost 50 years later. The discovery of Damiano’s chess book and its mistakes encouraged Ruy Lopez to write his own chess book. Pedro Damiano may have been a pseudonym to hide his real name.

Damjanovic, Mato (1927- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1964). He was 1st at Zagreb 1969 and Bad Pyrmont 1970.

Damjanovic – Tudev, Sochi 1964
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 d6 5.Bxc6+ bxc6 6.d4 exd4 7.Nxd4 c5 8.Ne2 Bb7 9.Nbc3 f5 10.exf5 Bxg2 11.Rg1 Bb7 12.Nf4 Qf6 13.Ne6 Rc8 14.Qe2 Kd7 15.Be3 Qxf5 16.Nxc5+ dxc5 17.O-O-O+ Bd6 18.Rxg7+ Kc6 19.Qc4 Qf6 20.Rf7 Qg6 21.Ne4 Rb8 22.Bxc5 1-0

Damljanovic, Branko (1961- )

Grandmaster from Serbia/Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2612. He is the highest rated player from Serbia and Montenegro.

Danielsen, Henrik (1966- )

Grandmaster from Denmark. His FIDE rating is 2511.

Dao Thien Hai (1978- )

Grandmaster from Vietnam. His FIDE rating is 2601. He won the Vietnames championship in 2002. He won the World Under-18 championship in 1994.

Darga, Klaus (1934- )

German Junior Chess Champion in 1951. In 1953 he tied with Oscar Panno in the 2nd World Junior Championship, held in Copenhagen. West German champion in 1955 and 1961. He became an International Master in 1957 and a Grandmaster in 1964. In the 1964 Amsterdam Interzonal, he took 11th place, beating Spassky. He works as a computer programmer.

Darin, Bobby (1936-1973)

Born Walden Waldo Cassotto, he was one of the most popular rock and roll American teen idols of the late 1950s. In late 1972, he planned the Bobby Darin International Chess Classic. It would have been the richest chess tournament ever, and he was putting up $25,000 of his own money, but he died before it could take place. Darin was a chess enthusiast. The Bobby Darin Show featured a weekly chess problem. He played chess his whole life, including the day before he died on the operating table during surgery to replace a heart valve. He taught his wife, Sandra Dee, to play chess. While he worked, she played chess with the cast or crew, and was very good, defeating most of her opponents.

Dautov, Rustem (1965- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2595. He married Petra Stadler, who once may have been involved with a relationship with Bobby Fischer.

Davies, Nigel (1960- )

English grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2521. He is a former British Open Quickplay champion. He has written at least 10 chess books.

Dawson, Thomas (1889-1951)

British problemist who composed over 6,000 chess problems. He specialized in fairy chess and invented the grasshopper (upside down queen) – it moves like a queen but must hop over a piece and land on the next square beyond. He was president of the British Chess Problem Society from 1931 to 1943.

Day, Lawrence (1949- )

Canadian International Master (1972). In 2004 he won the first Canadian Senior (over 50 years old) Chess Championship with a perfect 5-0.

Day – Grimshaw, Ontario 1965
1.Nf3 d5 2.e4 c6 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Ng5 Nf6 5.Bc4 e6 6.O-O Qd4 7.Qe2 Nbd7 8.d3 exd3 9.Bxd3 Ne5 10.Rd1 Nxd3 11.Be3 Nf4 12.Qf3 Nh3+ 13.gxh3 Qe5 14.Rd8+ Ke7 15.Rad1 1-0

de Firmian, Nicholas (Nick) (1957- )

American Grandmaster (1985). He was U.S. chess champion in 1987 (tied with Joel Benjamin), 1995, and 1998. He has a degree in physics and worked with the IBM Deep Blue team in 1997, preparing the computer’s openings for its winning efforts over world champion Garry Kasparov. The U.S. Chess Federation awarded him with “the 1999 Grandmaster of the Year” title.

De Firmian – Meyer, New York 1991
1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.f4 Bg7 5.Nf3 c5 6.Bb5+ Bd7 7.e5 Ng4 8.e6 fxe6 9.Ng5 Bxb5 10.Nxe6 Bxd4 11.Nxb5 Qa5+ 12.Qd2 Bf2+ 13.Kd1 Qa4 (13...Ne3+) 14.Qe2 Kf7 15.b3 Qa6 16.Ng5+ Kg7 17.Qxe7+ Kh6 18.Nf7+ (18...Kg7 19.Nxd6+ Kh6 20.Nf5+ gxf5 21.Qg5 mate) 1-0

de Groot, Adrian(1914- )

Dutch psychologist and chess master who did the first psychological enquiry into the minds of chess players. His 1965 book, Thought and Choice in Chess, showed the different abilities of masters and amateurs. He found that masters can recall 93% of all the pieces on a board of a chess position from a game (not random) after looking at it for 4 seconds. Experts remembered 72% and weaker chess players were able to recall only 51% of the pieces. When random positions were shown, all levels of players recalled the same percentage of pieces. This suggested that masters were able to use some form of chunking, or pattern-matching, that allowed them to recall the positions. He played on the Dutch Olympiad team in 1936, 1937, and 1939.

de Riviere, Jules (1830-1905)

Leading French master of his day. He was a frequent opponent of Morphy and they were good friends. Morphy pawned his watch that was given to him by the Brooklyn Chess Club to de Riviere, who loaned Morphy a large sum of money. Morphy never paid de Riviere back. Morphy and de Riviere set out to write a book on chess openings, but they never completed or published the book.

de Vere, Cecil (1845-1875)

Cecil Valentine Brown, later known as Cecil de Vere, was born in February 14 (Valentine’s Day), 1845. In 1857, at the age of 12, he was taught who to play chess by a strong London player, Francis Burden (1830-1882). In 1859, he joined the City of London Chess Club. In 1860, at the age of 15, he was a regular at Simpson’s Divan. In 1864, he played a number of games against Reverend George A. MacDonnell, winning the majority of them. In 1865, he won a match against Steinitz (+7-3=2), with Steinitz playing odds of a pawn and a move. In November, 1866, at the age of 21, he won the 1st British Chess Association Challenge Cup, held in London, becoming the first official British Chess Champion. He remained the youngest titleholder for over a century (until Nigel Short). In June 1867, he took 5th at Paris France, won by Kolisch. In September 1867, he took 3rd-4th at the 3rd Congress of the British Chess Association at Dundee, Scotland, won by Gustav Neumann. While he was in Dundee, he learned that he had tuberculosis (consumption). He worked at Lloyds Bank, but gave up his employment when he discovered he had tuberculosis. In 1868-69, he tied for 1st place at the 2nd British Chess Association Challenge Cup, held in London. He lost the play-off to Joseph Blackburne. In 1870, he took 6th-7th at Baden-Baden, Germany. In 1872, he took 3rd-5th at the 2nd British Chess Federation Congress in London. In 1872, he was the chess editor of the Field, but lost it after 18 months through inattention to work (he had become an alcoholic). In 1874, he lost a match against Zukertort in London. He died of tuberculosis and a penniless alcoholic at the age of 29 on February 9, 1875 at Torquay.

Burn – de Vere, London 1868
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.Bd3 Bd6 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.O-O Nf6 7.Re1+ Be6 8.Bf5 O-O 9.Bxe6 fxe6 10.Rxe6 Ne4 11.c4 Rxf3 12.gxf3 Qh4 13.Rxd6? (13.fxe4) 13...Qxf2+ 14.Kh1 Nxd6 15.cxd5 Re8 16.Bd2 Re2 0-1

Dean, George

Medical doctor. Founder and President Emeritus of Chess Collectors International. He is the owner of the largest collection of chess sets in the world. He owns the only Faberge chess set in existence, perhaps the most valuable chess set in the world. His chess sets were exhibited at the Karpov-Kasparov World Championship match at the Macklowe Hotel in New York.

Death Of Chess Players

Georgy Agzamov (1954-1986) died after falling down between two rocks at a beach. Alexander Alekhine (1892-1946) choked to death on a piece of meat. Curt Von Bardeleben (1861-1924) committed suicide by jumping out of an upper window of his boarding home. Efim Bogoljobov (1889-1952) died of a heart attack after a simultaneous exhibition. Paolo Boi (1528-1598) was poisoned. Jose Capablanca (1888-1942) died of a stroke after watching a skittles game at the Manhattan Chess Club. Edgar Colle (1897-1932) died after an operation for a gastric ulcer. Ed Edmondson (192001982) had a heart attack while playing chess on the beach. Janos Flesch died in a car wreck in 1983. Karen Grigorian jumped out a window. Nikolai Grigoriev (1895-1938) died after an operation for appendicitis. Alexander Ilyin-Genevsky (1894-1941) got hit by an artillery shell on a barge in Leningrad. Klaus Jung died at the front line in Germany. Salo Landau (1903-1944) died in a German concentration camp. Paul Leonhardt had a heart attack while playing chess at a chess club in 1934. George Mackenzie (1837-1891) died after an overdose of morphine. Frank Marshall (1877-1944) died of a heart attack after leaving a friend’s house in Jersey City. Vera Menchik (1906-1944) died in a V2 German bombing of London. Johannes Minckwitz (1843-1901) committed suicide by throwing himself in front of a train. Paul Morphy (1837-1884) died of a stroke while taking a cold bath. Lembit Oll jumped out of his 4th story apartment. Julius Perlis died in a mountain climb in the Alps in 1913. Vladimir Petrov died in a Russian prison camp in 1945. Harry Pillsbury (1872-1906) died of syphilis. David Przepiorka died in a mass execution outside Warsaw in 1940. Nicholas Rossolimo (1910-1975) died of head injuries after falling down a flight of stairs in Manhattan. Pierre Saint-Amant (1800-1872) died after falling from a horse and carriage. Carl Schlechter (1874-1918) died from pneumonia and starvation. Gideon Stahlberg died during the 1967 Leningrad International tournament. Howard Staunton (1810-1874) died of a heart attack while writing a chess book. Vladimir Simagin (1919-1968) died of a heart attack while playing in a chess tournament. Herman Steiner (1905-1955) died of a heart attack after a game from the California State Championship. Alexei Troitzky (1866-1942) died of starvation during the siege of Leningrad. Abe Turner (1924-1962) was stabbed 9 times in the back by a fellow employee. Alvis Vitolins died by jumping. Frederick Yates (1884-1932) died in his sleep from a leak in a faulty gas pipe connection. Alexander Zaitsev died of thrombosis after a minor operation to remedy a limp by having one leg lengthened. Johann Zukertort (1842-1888) died of a stroke while playing chess at a London coffee house.


IBM’s chess supercomputer that calculates over 200 million moves per second or 50 billion moves in 3 minutes. In May, 1997 it defeated World Champion Garry Kasparov with 2 wins, 1 loss, and 3 draws. Kasparov had defeated Deep Blue in February, 1996 with 3 wins, 1 loss, and 2 draws. Deep Blue has been IBM‘s chess project since 1989. The computer is now on display at the National Museum of American History (Smithsonian).


Strongest chess computer program in the world. In 2001 it won the World Micro Computer Chess Championship 2 points ahead of all its competition, with a score of 8 out of 9.. World Computer Chess Champion in 2002. It is the world’s first commercial chess program to run on machines with multi-processors. The program is based on Junior6, the 1997 Microcomputer World Champion. It played a match against Kasparov in January-February, 2003 in New York.


Once the strongest chess playing computer in the world. It searched approximately 2 million chess positions per second. Deep Thought became the first computer to defeat a grandmaster in tournament play by defeating Bent Larsen at the 1988 U.S. Open. Deep Thought tied for first place in the U.S. Open with Tony Miles. Deep Thought became the world computer champion in 1989 and defeated David Levy in a match later that year.

Del Rio Angelis, Salvador G. (1978- )

Grandmaster from Spain. His peak Elo rating was 2509.

Delmar, Eugene (1841-1909)

Born in New York City on September 12, 1841. In 1874, he won the Brookyn Chess Club championship. In 1876, he tied for 2nd place in the New York Clipper tournament, behind James Mason. In 1879, he defeated Sam Loyd in a match in New York (+5-1=2). In 1885, he won the 7th and 8th Manhattan Chess Club championship. In 1888, he defeated Samuel Lipschuetz in a match in New York (+5-3=0). In 1890, 1891, 1895, and 1897, he won the New York State Chess Association championship. In 1904, he took last place at Cambridge Springs (+3-9=3). For over 50 years, he was a leading chess player in America. He died on February 22, 1909 in New York City.

DeMaro, Barbara

Managing director of the United States Chess Trust, the charitable arm of the United States Chess Federation. She administers the Samford Fellowship (current US chess champion Hikaru Nakamura is the 2005 Samford Chess Fellow). She was the USCF Executive Assistant from 1995 to 2000 and worked for the USCF for over 20 years.

Demonstration Board

The first demonstration board was designed in 1857 by Lowenthal. The first use of a demonstration board in a World Championship match was for the Steinitz-Zukertort match in 1886.

Denker, Arnold Sheldon (1914-2005)

A onetime boxer and boxing manager (won three successive Golden Gloves bouts by knockouts). He won the New York State championship in 1938 and 1939. He won the Manhattan Chess Club Championship in 1939/40 and in 1943/44. He won the 1944 U.S. Chess Championship with 14 wins, a record. He also won it in 1946 when he defeated Herman Steiner in a match. In 1942 he beat Reshevsky on time in the U.S. Championship. While spectators watched, the tournament director (Walter Stephens) mistakenly declared that Denker's time had expired. He was looking at the clock backwards and refused to change is decision, which ultimately gave Reshevsky the title. Denker once appeared in an advertisement for Camel cigarettes. He set a world record of playing 100 opponents in 7.33 hours. He won the Manhattan Chess Club Championship six times. During World War II, he gave simultaneous chess exhibitions at military bases and on board aircraft carriers. Like Reuben Fine, he was invited by the US government to help crack enemy codes. He received an Honorary Grandmaster title in 1981 (he was awarded the International Master title in 1950). He authored The Bobby Fischer I Knew and Other Stories. He died of brain cancer at the age of 90. He was inducted in the US Chess Hall of Fame in 1992. In 2004 he was proclaimed Dean of American Chess, a title given earlier to Hermann Helms and George Koltanowski. In 1984 he sponsored the national championship of high school state chess champions, known as the Denker Championship.

Denker – MacMurray, New York 1932
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.Nc3 Nc6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 d5 6.Qa4 Qd7 7.cxd5 Nxd5 8.Nxd5 Qxd5 9.Nb5 Qd7 10.Bd2 e5 (10...a6) 11.O-O-O Bc5? (11...a6) 12.Bg5 Qf5 13.Nc7+ Kf8 14.Rd8+ Nxd8 15.Qe8 mate 1-0

Dervishi, Erald (1979- )

Albania’s first and only Grandmaster (1998). His FIDE rating is 2502. He has been Albanian chess champion.

Deschapelles, Alexandre Louis Honore Lebreton (1780-1847)

Probably the strongest player in the world from 1800 to 1824. He claimed to have mastered chess in four days of study. He lost his right arm fighting the Prussians in Napoleon’s army. He gave up chess and took up whist when he could no longer beat his opponents at odds. George Perigal, after interviewing him, wrote: "M. Deschapelles is the greatest chess player in France; M. Deschapelles is the greatest whist player in France; M. Deschapelles is the greatest billiards player in France; M. Deschapelles is the greatest pumpkin-grower in France; M. Deschapelles is the greatest liar in France." He gave up chess when he was defeated by La Bourdonnais, then became an expert at whist.

Deutsche Schachzeitung

Leading chess periodical in Germany. It is the oldest chess magazine still in existence. It was founded in 1846 by Ludwig Bledow and edited by Adolph Anderssen. The magazine was then called Schachzeitung der Berliner Schachgesellschaft. It changed its name upon the unification of Prussia with the other German states after the Franco-Prussian war. It was not published from 1945 to 1950. It started up again in October 1950.

DiCamillo, Attilio (1917-1962)

He played in three U.S. Chess Championships. He took 10th-11th place in 1944. He took 13th-16th place in 1946. He took 12th-13th place in 1957-58.

Diemer, Emil Josef (1908-1990)

German master who contributed to the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit, 1.d4 d5 2. e4 dxe4 3.f3 or 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.e4. In 1935/36 and 1936/37 he took first place in the Premier Reserves Major Tournament at Hastings. In 1965 he was committed to a psychiatric clinic and was told not to play chess. He returned to chess in the 1970s. He had been a member of the Nazi party and was a chess reporter in the 1930s and 1940s. He became preoccupied with Nostradamus, with interpreting the past and foretelling the future.

Diemer – NN, Germany 1948
1.d4 d5 2.a3 a6 3.Nc3 e6 4.e3 c5 5.dxc5 Bxc5 6.b4 Be7 7.Bb2 Bf6 8.Nf3 b5 9.e4 Qc7 10.e5 Bxe5 11.Nxb5 1-0

Diesen, Mark (1957- )

International Master (1976), U.S. Co-Junior Champion (with Michael Rohde) and World Junior Champion in 1976 (played in Groningen, Holland). He became the first U.S. player to win the World Junior Championship since Bill Lombardy did it in 1957. At 19, he was the youngest U.S. International Master since Fischer. In 1980 he played in the U.S. Championship, but fell and got hurt after 3 rounds, then withdrew. In 2003 he won the Texas State Championship.

Diez del Corral, Jesus (1933- )

Spanish Grandmaster (1974). He won the Spanish Chess Championship in 1955 and 1965. He is an accountant by profession.

Dilaram’s Mate

The most famous of the Shatranj compositions. In old Arabic manuscripts a nobleman was playing chess and staked his favorite wife, Dilaram (heart’s ease), on one of the games. Unfortunately, the game went badly for the nobleman, and defeat seemed unavoidable. Dilaram shouted to her nobleman how to avoid mate. She said “Sacrifice your two rooks, but not me!” That’s what he did and he won the game.

Dimitrov, Vladimir (1968- )

Grandmaster from Bulgaria. His FIDE rating is 2418.

Ditt, Egon (1931-2005)

FIDE Vice President from 1990 to 1994. FIDE Executive Council from 1994 to 1998. Honorary President of the German Chess Federation. He was treasurer of the European Chess Union.

Divinsky, Nathan (1925- )

Canadian mathematician, chess master, and author. In 1945, he was 3rd in the Canadian Championship. He played on the 1954 and 1966 Canadian Olympiad chess team. He was the editor of Canadian Chess Chat, Canada’s chess magazine, from 1959 to 1974. His wife, Kim Campbell, was the 19th Prime Minister of Canada. They were married from 1972 to 1983. He served as assistant dean of science at the University of British Columbia. He served as president of the Canadian Chess Federation.


In 1963 a wife of a chess player in Milan filed for divorce because he was so obsessed with chess that he refused to work and support their two children. The court ruled that Mrs. Edvige Ruinstein was entitled to a separation from her husband. When Capablanca divorced his first wife, Gloria, her family had him demoted from Cuban Ambassador to Commercial Attaché of the Cuban Foreign Office. Marcel Duchamp’s first wife, Lydie, divorced him after three months. Lydie cited addiction to chess in the divorce papers. When Boris Spassky divorced his first wife in 1961, he said, “we were like bishops of opposite colors.” Alekhine divorced three times. Divorced chess masters include Alekhine, Capablanca, Donaldson, Duchamp, Hartston, Karpov, Kasparov, Korchnoi, Miles (twice), Oll, Susan Polgar, Shirov, Spassky, Tal, Tarrasch, and Timman.

Dizdar, Goran (1958- )

Grandmaster from Croatia. His FIDE rating is 2518.

Dizdarevic, Emir (1958- )

Yugoslav (Bosnia and Herzegovina) Grandmaster (1988). He is rated around 2520.

Philippe – Dizdarevic, Arandelovac 1985
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.Bg5 c6 4.f3 Qb6 5.Na4 Qa5+ 6.c3 Nbd7 7.Nh3 e5 8.Bd2 b5 0-1

Djurhuus, Rune (1970- )

Grandmaster from Norway. His FIDE rating is 2461.

Djuric, Stefan (1955- )

Yugoslav (Serbia and Montenegro) Grandmaster (1982) from Belgrade. He won the 2001 Australian Open.

Djuric – Szabo, Oberwart 1979
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.Nc3 e6 4.g3 b6 5.e4 Bb7 6.d3 Be7 7.Bg2 O-O 8.O-O d6 9.b3 Nc6 10.d4 d5 11.exd5 exd5 12.cxd5 Nb4 13.dxc5 Nbxd5 14.Nxd5 Nxd5 15.Bb2 Bxc5 16.Ne5 f6 17.Nd3 Rf7 18.Nxc5 bxc5 19.Qh5 Nb4 20.Bxb7 Rxb7 21.Qxc5 Rc8 22.Rad1 Qe8 23.Qf5 Nxa2 24.Rfe1 Qc6 25.Rd6 1-0

Dlugy, Maxim (1966- )

Born in Moscow on January 29, 1966. He emigrated with his family to New York in 1979. He became a master in 1980, and International Master in 1982, and a Grandmaster in 1986. In 1984, he tied for 3rd at the U.S. chess championship. In April 1985, at the age of 19, he advanced to the interzonals (he played in the Tunis Interzonal), the youngest U.S. player since Fischer. He tied for 6th-8th place (won by Yusupov). In 1985, he won the World Junior Chess Championship. In 1985, he took 2nd in the New York Open. In 1986 he played first board on the U.S. Olympiad chess team in Dubai. In 1987, he won the National Open in Las Vegas. In 1987 he tied for 3rd in the U.S. Championship. In 1988, he won the $32,000 Samford Chess Fellowship. In 1988, he won the World Open in Philadelphia. In 1988 and 1990, he won the US Open blitz championship. From 1988 to 1993, Dlugy was ranked number 1 in the world in the World Blitz Chess Association. In 1989, he tied for 1st at the American Open. He was elected President of the USCF (the first Grandmaster to be elected President) in 1990 and was USCF president from 1990 to 1993. In 1991, he won the 2nd Harvard Cup man-machine tournament. In 1992, he was the 3rd highest rated player in the USA, behind Kamsky and Kaidanov. In the 1990s he worked for Bankers Trust on Wall Street as a securities trader. In 2002, he was the investment manager to Russian Growth Fund (based in the Virgin Islands), which invested in a magnesium plant in Solikamsk (Russia’s second biggest magnesium plant; the USA buys 60% of its production). Garry Kasparov once served as a senior advisor at the Russian Growth Fund. From June 2003 to August 2003 he was the plant’s chairman of the board. In April 2005, he was arrested in Moscow on fraud charges. He had been wanted since November, 2004. He was charged with attempting to defraud the company of $9 million worth of bonds. He was transferred to a prison in Perm, central Russia. He faces up to 10 years in a Russian prison.

Shamkovich – Dlugy, New York 1983
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.e3 e6 5.Bxc4 c5 6.O-O a6 7.Qe2 cxd4 8.exd4 Be7 9.Nc3 b5 10.Bb3 Bb7 11.Bg5 O-O 12.Rfe1 Nc6 13.Rad1 Nd5 14.Nxd5 Bxg5 15.Nb6? (15.Nc3) 15...Nxd4 16.Nxd4 Qxb6 17.Qg4 Bf6 18.Nxe6 Bc8 0-1

Dokhoian, Yuri (1964- )

Russian Grandmaster (1988). He took 1st at Plovdiv 1988, Wijk aan Zee 1989, and Lulin 1993. He served a a coach to Garry Kasparov.

Dokhoian – Taimanov, Belgrade 1988
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Bb4+ 4.Bd2 a5 5.g3 d5 6.Qc2 Nc6 7.a3 Bxd2+ 8.Nbxd2 dxc4 9.Qxc4 Qd5 10.Bg2 Ne4 11.Qd3 Nxd2 12.Qxd2 O-O 13.Rd1 Ra6 14.O-O Rb6 15.Qc1 Qb5 16.Rd2 f5 17.Rfd1 h6 18.Rc2 Kh7 19.e3 Rd8 20.Ne1 e5 21.d5 Na7 22.Rxc7 e4 23.Qc3 Qxb2 24.Rxg7+ Kh8 25.Qc7 1-0

Dolmatov, Sergei (1959- )

Russian Grandmaster (1982). In 1978 he won the World Junior Championship. He was a former student of Botvinnik. In 1989, he tied for 2nd place in the USSR Championship. He took 1st place at Hastings in 1989/1990. He has been Kasparov’s second.

Kasparov – Dolmatov, Moscow 1977
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.e3 Be7 5.Bd3 O-O 6.O-O dxc4 7.Bxc4 c5 8.Qe2 cxd4 9.exd4 Nc6 10.Rd1 b6 11.Nc3 Nb4 12.Bg5 Bb7 13.Ne5 Nfd5 14.Bxe7 Qxe7 15.a3 Nf4 16.Qg4 Nbd5 17.Nxd5 Nxd5 18.Re1 Rad8 19.Bd3 f5 20.Qg3 Nf6 21.Rac1 Rxd4 22.Nc6 Bxc6 23.Rxc6 Qd7 24.Bb5 Ne4 25.Qb3 a6 0-1

Donaldson, John Walter (1958- )

International Master (1983) and one of the nicest guys in chess. In 1983 he was the captain of the US team at the Greece Olympiad when he eloped with one of the top Russian lady players, Elena Akhmilovskaya. He is director of the San Francisco Mechanics Institute Chess Club. He has a BA in history from the University of Washington. He has been captain of the U.S. Chess Olympic team six times. He edited Northwest Chess from 1983 to 1984, The Players Chess News from 1984 to 1985. He was a staff member for Inside Chess for 11 years. He has written over 20 chess books.

Fricano – Donaldson, Milwaukee 2001
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.c4 Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Nc3 O-O 8.Be2 b6 9.O-O Bb7 10.f3 Nh5 11.f4 Nxf4 12.Rxf4 Nxd4 13.Bxd4 e5 14.Rf3 exd4 15.Nd5 Re8 16.Qf1 Bxd5 17.exd5 Qe7 18.Re1 Bh6 19.d6 Qxd6 20.c5 Qxc5 21.Bc4 d3+ 0-1

Donchev, Dimitar (1958- )

Grandmaster from Bulgaria. His FIDE rating is 2452. He was Bulgarian champion in 1983.

Donner, Johannes (Jan) Hein (1927-1988)

Dutch grandmaster (1959) who won the Dutch championship in 1954, 1957, and 1958. Donner was the first grandmaster that a Chinese player defeated. At the Chess Olympiad in Buenos Aries in 1978, Liu Wen Che defeated Donner in 20 moves, putting China on the chess map.

Enklaar – Donner, Netherlands 1976
1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.f4 Bg7 5.Nf3 O-O 6.Be3 Nbd7 7.e5 Ng4 8.Bd2 c5 9.exd6 cxd4 10.Nxd4 Nf2 11.Qe2 e5 12.Qxf2 exd4 13.Nd5 Nc5 14.Ne7+ Kh8 15.Nxc8 Rxc8 16.O-O-O Qb6 17.Re1? (17.Qf3) 17...d3 (18.Kd1 dxc2+ 19.Ke2 Qxd6) 0-1

Dorfman, Josif (Iosif ) (1952- )

Ukrainian trainer and Grandmaster (1978) who was Kasparov’s second for four World Championships. He tied for 1st place (with Gulko) in the USSR championship in 1977. He later moved to Cannes, France.

Dorfman – Santos, St. Barbara 1992
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 c6 4.Qc2 Nf6 5.g3 Nbd7 6.Bg2 Bd6 7.O-O O-O 8.Nbd2 b5 9.c5 Bc7 10.e4 e5 11.dxe5 Nxe5 12.Nxe5 Bxe5 13.Nf3 Qe7 (13...Re8) 14.exd5 Nxd5 15.Re1 f6 16.Bf4 Qc7 17.Bxe5 fxe5 18.Nxe5 Bf5 19.Qb3 Rad8 20.Rad1 Rfe8 21.Bxd5+ Rxd5 22.Rxd5 Be6 23.Nxc6 (23...Qxc6 24.Rxe6 Qxe6 25.Re5 Qxb3 26.Rxe8 Kf7 27.axb3 Kxe8 28.b4) 1-0

Down, Nick

A former British Junior Correspondence Champion. In the 1985-86 British Ladies Correspondence Chess Championship, Nick Down entered as Miss Leigh Strange and won the event. He was later caught and admitted his deception was a prank that got out of hand. He was later banned from the British Correspondence Chess Association.

Drasko, Milan (1962- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2516.


The first time a draw counted a half point was the Dundee International in 1867. Up until 1952, the USCF Laws of Chess stated that draws could not be accepted by mutual consent until 30 moves were made.

Drawing Master

Nickname of Carl Schlechter. He drew half of his games during his tournament career. However, the title should probably go to O'Kelly de Galway who drew all his nine games at Beverwijk in 1957, drew seven out of nine at Beverwijk in 1958, and drew all nine games at Beverwijk in 1959.

Drawn Games

Up to 1867 tournament games that were drawn had to be replayed. The 1929 International Rules of Chess and the 1939 USCF rules required players to play a minimum of 30 moves before agreeing to a draw.

Dreev, Alexei (1969- )

Russian Grandmaster (1990) who was World Under-16 champion (1983-84). He began to play and study chess at age 6. He was European Junior Champion in 1988. His peak Elo reating was 2705. In 2004, he finished 3rd in the Russian championship.

Dreev – Agnos, Arnhem 1989
1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.Bg5 Nbd7 5.f4 h6 6.Bh4 Nh5 7.f5 Bg7 8.Bc4 Nhf6 9.fxg6 fxg6 10.Nf3 g5 11.Bg3 Nh5? (11...Nb6) 12.Ne5 Nxg3 13.Nf7 Nxh1 14.Nxd6+ Kf8 15.Qh5 (threatening 16.Qf7 mate) 1-0


Host of the 1986 Chess Olympiad. Holland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and the U.S. Virgin Islands boycotted the Olympiad because Israel was excluded. A record 107 countries participated. The previous record was Lucerne 1982 which had 91 countries.

Dubeck, Leroy (1939- )

United States Chess Federation Secretary from 1966 to 1969, and President from 1969 to 1972. He has a Ph.D. in Physics. He was President, Vice-President or Secretary of the New Jersey State Chess Federation for over 20 years. He has been a physics professor at Temple University for over 30 years.

Dubois, Serafino (1817-1899)

Italy’s leadng player in the mid 19th century. In 1847, he edited the first chess column (L’Album) in Italy.

Duchamp, Marcel (1887-1968)

Renowned artist (one of the founders of Dadaism, surrealism, and cubism) and chess player who used chess themes in many of his paintings. He gave up work as an artist in 1923 to concentrate on chess. In 1927 his bride, Lydie, glued all his chess pieces to the board because he spent his honeymoon week studying chess. They were divorced four months later. He was a French chess master and played for France on four Olympiads. His three most famous chess paintings are: The Chessplayers (1910), Portrait of a Chessplayer (1911), and King and Queen Surrounded by Swift Nudes (1912). He died at the age of 81 near Paris.

Duchamp – E. Smith, Hyeres 1928
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 e6 4.Bc3 b6 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.Bd2 Ba6 7.Ne5 Nxc3 8.Bxc3 f6 9.e3 fxe5 10.Bxa6 Nxa6 11.Qa4+ Qd7 12.Qxa6 Be7 13.dxe5 O-O 14.O-O c5 15.Rad1 Qc7 16.Qc4 Qc6 17.a4 Rad8 18.f4 Rxd1 g6 (19...a5) 20.Rd6! Bxd6 21.Qxe6+ Rf7 22.exd6 Qd7 23.Qe5 (23...Rf8 24.Qh8+ Kf7 25.Qxh7+ Ke8 26.Qxg6+) 1-0

Dufresne, Jean (1829-1893)

German chess player and newspaper editor in Berlin. He wrote novels under the pseudonym E.S. Freund, an anagram of his real name. He was a pupil of Adolf Anderssen.

Dufresne – Von Der Lasa, Berlin 1850
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Bc4 Nc6 4.Ng5 d5 5.exd5 Na5 6.Bb5+ c6 7.dxc6 bxc6 8.Ba4 h6 9.Nf3 e4 10.Qe2 Be6 11.Ne5 Qd4 12.Bxc6+ Nxc6 13.Qb5 Bc5 14.Qxc6+ Ke7 15.Qb7+ Kd6 16.f4 Qf2+ 17.Kd1 Qxf4 18.Qc6+ Kxe5 19.d4 Bxd4 20.Qc7+ 1-0

Dunst, Theodore (1907-1985)

New York master who popularized the opening 1.Nc3, which is sometimes called the Dunst Opening.

Durao, Joaquim (1938- )

Portuguese chess player; awarded the International Master title in 1975. He has won the Portuguese championship 13 times. He served as Vice President of FIDE.

Durao – Horta, Lisbon 1954
1.e4 e6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Bg5 Be7 4.Bd3 O-O 5.Nc3 Nxe4? (5...Nc6) 6.Bxe7 Nxc3 7.Bxh7+ Kh8 8.Qh5 (8...Kg8 9.Bxd8) 1-0

Duras, Oldrich (1882-1957)

Czech champion (1905, 1907, and 1909) and grandmaster (1950) who was one of the world’s top 10 players from 1906 to 1914. During World War I he served in the Austrio-Hungarian army. He gave up chess in 1918 to pursue his career as a civil servant.

Duras – Jes, Pisek 1912
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 d5 4.exd5 Qxd5 5.Nc3 Qh5 6.d4 Bg4 7.Bxf4 Bxf3 8.Qxf3 Qxf3 9.gxf3 Nc6 10.Bxc7 Nxd4 11.O-O-O Ne6?? (11...Bc5) 12.Bb5+ Ke7 13.Nd5 mate 1-0

Dus-Chotimirsky, Fedor (1879-1965)

Russian International Master (1950). In 1909 he defeated the eventual winners Lasker and Rubinstein at St. Petersburg, but took 13th place. He claimed he was Alekhine’s first chess teacher, in 1900. He played in five Soviet Chess Championships. He once took a move back against David Bronstein in a tournament as spectators watched his game. In response to the crowd and the tournament director who tried to intervene, he shouted, “Hey, I just made a bad move and now I an changing it to a good one. To hell with the rules, this is chess.” The game continued as nothing happened. Dus-Chotimirisky may have been the person who coined the name “Dragon Variation” of the Sicilian Defense.

Dus-Chotimirsky – Sharov, Moscow 1901
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.O-O d6 5.d4 Nd7 6.Nc3 Be7 7.Be3 O-O 8.Qd2 Bf6 9.Ne2 Qe7 10.Ng3 exd4 11.Nxd4 Nxd4 12.Bxd4 Ne5 13.f4 Ng4 14.Be2 Bxd4+ 15.Qxd4 Nxh2 16.Nh5 f5 17.Kxh2 g6 18.Bc4+ 1-0

Dvoirys, Semen (1958- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating in 2589. He once threw his shoe through the tournament hall in Holland after a defeat. Another time, he beat his head on the floor after a loss.

Dyckhoff, Eduard (1880-1949)

German chess club activist and one of the most enthusiastic propagators of correspondence chess. In 1930, he won the Internationaler Fernschachbund (IFSB) world correspondence championship. He took second place in 1929, 1931 and 1936. In 1954, a giant Dychkhoff Memorial Correspondence Tournament was organized with 1,860 chess players from 33 countries. As many as 8,856 games were played in this event. The event was won by Lothar Schmid, who later became a grandmaster in correspondence and over-the-board play.

Dydyshko, Viacheslav (1949- )

Grandmaster from Belarus. His FIDE rating is 2551.

Dyner, Israel (1903-1979)

Belgian Chess Champion in 1932 and 1935.

Dzindzichashvili, Roman Yakovlevich (1944- )

Soviet-born (Tbilisi) player and Grandmaster (1977). He won the U.S. Championship in 1983 and 1989. He played in two USSR championships (1971 and 1972) before immigrating to Israel in 1976. He was Israeli Champion in 1977. He came to the United States in 1980. He won Lone Pine in 1980. He led the U.S. Olympiad team in 1984.

Grigorian – Dzindzichashvili, USSR 1969
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Bc5 4.c3 f5 5.d4 fxe4 6.Ng5 Bb6 7.d5 e3 8.dxc6 bxc6 9.h4 exf2+ 10.Kf1 cxb5 11.Qd5 Nh6 12.Qxa8 c6 13.Ne4 O-O 14.Bg5? (14.b4) 14...b4 (threatening 15...Ba6 and mate) 0-1

Eade, Jim (1957- )

Chess writer, editor, publisher, and organizer. Author of Chess for Dummies in 1996. He is a FIDE master (1993).

Eastman, George (1903-1975)

He won the Canadian Championship in 1925, 1926, 1927, 1929, 1930, and 1931. He won the Michigan State Championship in 1933, 1938, 1939, 1941, 1946, 1948, 1949, and 1952.

Eaton, Vincent (1915-1962)

Graduated from Harvard at the age of 18. He was considered one of America’s greatest chess composers. He worked as a scholar at the Library of Congress. From 1939 to 1941 he was the Problem Editor of Chess Review.

Edinburgh vs. London

The first well known correspondence match. In April, 1824, the Edinburgh Chess Club in Scotland (established in 1822) challenged the London Chess Club (established in 1807) in a match. The match lasted four years (1824 to 1828). Edinburgh won with 2 wins, 1 loss, and two draws. The match was scheduled to continue until three decisive games were completed. Draws did not count. The stakes were a silver cup and 25 guineas. Game one (which started on April 23, 1824) was a draw. Edinburgh won game two. London played what is known today as the Scotch Opening (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4). On the 28th move of game 2, the London Chess Club tried to take back a losing move. Edinburgh did not allow this, and they won in 52 moves. Game three was a draw. This time Edinburgh played the Scotch as White. Game four was won by London. Game five was won by Edinburgh (Edinburgh again adopted the Scotch Opening). The letters carrying the moves were sent by mail coach. The distance was 400 miles. It took three days to deliver a letter and a move. The Scotch Opening is named after the Scotch players of Edinburgh who played this opening, even though it was introduced by London. The London Chess Club was represented by William Lewis, Cochrane, Parkinson, Wood, Fraser, Brand, Mercier, Keen, Pratt, Samuda, Tomlin, and Willshire.. The Edinburgh Chess Club was represented by Donaldson, Aytoun, Liston, Stirling, Buchanan, Burnett, Crawford, Gregory, Mackersy, Meiklejohn, More, Pender, Rose, Wauchope, and Wylie. The London Chess Club folded in 1827 when Lewis, the owner of the club, went bankrupt from bad investments in the piano business.

Edmondson, Edmund (1920-1982)

Former president (1963-1966) and executive director (1966-1977) of the U.S. Chess Federation. In 1969, he arranged the merger of Chess Life and Chess Review magazines to form Chess Life & Review. He suffered a heart attack while playing chess on the beach at Waikiki. The Edmondson trophy goes to the winner of the National Open. He retired from the U.S. Air Force as a Lieutenant Colonel, serving as an aircraft navigator on tanker and bombers.

Edward I (1239-1307)

King of England. In 1270 he was playing chess against a soldier in a room with a tiled roof. He had just left his chair when suddenly an immense rock fell on the very spot where he had been sitting. His brother-in-law, Alphonso of Castile, commissioned one of the most important manuscripts on chess.

Efimov, Igor (1960- )

Grandmaster from Italy. His FIDE rating is 2401.

Ehlvest, Jaan (1962- )

Estonian Grandmaster (1987). In 1981, he took 2nd in the World Junior Chess Championship. He won the European Junior Championship in 1982/83. He won the New York Open in 1994 and the World Open in 2003. He was a Candidate in the World Chess Championship in 1988, but got knocked out by Yusupov. He was once banned from playing chess by the Estonian Sports Committee after a drinking incident in Tallinn. He studied psychology at Tartu State University.

Landenbergue – Ehlvest, New York 1993
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.f4 Be7 7.Bb5+ Bd7 8.e5 dxe5 9.fxe5 Nd5 10.Nxd5 exd5 11.e6 fxe6 12.Nxe6 Bb4+ 13.Bd2 (13.c3) 13...Qh4+ 14.g3 Qe4+ 15.Kf2 Rf8+ (16.Bf4 Qxe6) 0-1

Eichborn, Louis (1812-1882)

He was a fellow professor and collegue of Adof Anderssen. In 1851, Eichborn won 2 games against Anderssen. In 1852, he won 8 games and drew one game in a match against Adolf Anderssen in Breslau. In 1853, Eichborn won 9 games and lost one game against Anderssen. In 1854, Eichborn won 4 games against Anderssen. In 1855, Eichborn won 2 games and lost one game against Anderssen. In 1857, he won 4 games against Anderssen. In 1858, he won one game against Anderssen. In 1859, he won one game against Anderssen. From 1851 to 1859, Eichborn won 31 games, lost 2 games and drew one game against Anderssen. Eichborn died on May 9, 1882 in Breslau. His games were found among his papers after he died. He had kept his wins and some draws. He played 34 games that we know of against Adolf Anderssen. The games were published in Adolf Anderssen, der Altmeister Schachspielkunst, by Gottschall in 1912. About 15 other Eichborn’s games with other opponents were published by Deutsche Schachzeitung during his lifetime.

Eidelson, Rakhil (1958- )

Woman Grandmaster from Belarus. Her FIDE rating is 2165.

Eingorn, Vereslav (1956- )

Russian Grandmaster (1986). In 1986, he took 2nd in the 53rd USSR Chess Championsuip.

Einsiedeln Verses

The earliest known literary account of chess and the earliest reference to chess in a western document. It was written in the 10th century in the monastery at Einsiedeln, Switzerland. It is a 98-line poem describing chess.

Einstein, Albert (1879-1955)

Albert Einstein was a good friend of World Chess Champion Emanual Lasker and they shared an apartment together in Berlin in the 1930s. In an interview with the New York Times in 1936 Albert said, "I do not play any games. There is no time for it. When I get through work I don't want anything which requires the working of the mind." He did play chess with friends, however.

Eliskases, Erich (1913-1997)

Austrian champion (1929) and Grandmaster that remained in Argentina during a chess Olympiad after World War II broke out. For a time, he was considered a likely contender for the world title. He was given the title of GM in 1952. Eliskases has beaten Capablanca and Fischer. He played chess for three different countries in Olympiads: Austria, Germany, and Argentina. He could have played for Brazil as well, but turned it down.

Kozelen – Eliskases, Correspondence 1932
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d5 3.exd5 e4 4.Qe2 Nf6 5.Qb5+ c6 6.dxc6 bxc6 7.Qe5+ Be7 8.Ng5 Nbd7 9.Qf4 O-O 10.Nxe4 Nd5 11.Qf3 Re8 12.d3 Ne5 13.Qg3? (13.Qd1) 13...Bh4 14.Bg5 Bxg5 15.Qxg5 Qxg5 16.Nxg5 Nf3+ 17.Kd1 Re1 mate 0-1

Eljanov, Pavel (1983- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2639.

Elkies, Noam (1966- )

Chess master and mathematician. He is the youngest professor ever tenured at Harvard (age 26). In 1981 and 1982 he placed first in the USA Math Olympiad. He had a perfect score in 1981. He got his PhD from Harvard in mathematics at age 20. He won the world chess solving championship in 1996 and 2001.

Elo, Arpad (1903-1992)

Played in 37 consecutive state championships in Wisconsin, from 1933 to 1969, winning the title 8 times. He was a professor of physics for 37 years and president (1935-1937) of the American Chess Federation before it merged and came part of the U.S. Chess Federation (USCF) in 1939. He is considered the father of scientific chess ratings and his Elo rating system was adopted by the USCF in 1960 and by FIDE in 1970.

Emery, Thomas (1896-1975)

Principal benefactor of the American Chess Foundation. He sponsored the Armed Forces Championship (the Thomas Emery Trophy) beginning in 1960, which continues today. He donated over one million dollars to chess during his lifetime.

Emms, John (1967- )

Grandmaster from England. His FIDE rating is 2509. In 1997, he tied for 1st in the British Championship. He has written over a dozen chess books.

En passant

First used in the 15th century but not universally accepted until 1880. Outside Italy, up to the 18th century, the player had the option of taking a pawn in passing (en passant). In Italy, a pawn could not be taken in passing.

Endzelins, Lucius (1909-1981)

Correspondence Grandmaster (1959). He tied for 2nd place (with Lothar Schmid) in the 2nd World Correspondence Championship, held from 1956 to 1959. He won the Australian championship in 1961. He was born in Estonia.

English, Berthold (1851-1897)

Austrian chess master of grandmaster strength. He won the German championship in 1879. He was one of the early pioneers of the Orangutan Opening, 1.b4.

Englisch – Gifford, Paris 1878
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.d3 d6 6.Nc3 Bd7 7.O-O Ne7 8.Bb3 Ng6 9.Ng5 d5 10.Nxd5 Be6 11.Nxe6 fxe6 12.Nxf6+ Qxf6 13.Qg4 Kd7 14.Bg5 Qf7 15.d4 exd4 16.f4 Ne7 17.f5 1-0

Englund, Fritz (1871-1933)

Swedish player who analyzed and played the moves 1.d4 e5, known as the Englund Gambit.

Eon de Beaumont, Charles D' (1728-1810)

French chess player and male transvestite who was a diplomat for Louis XV. He once beat Philidor in one of Philidor’s blindfold exhibitions.


Epigrams are terse, witty sayings that sometimes have a meaning or moral. Chess has an abundance of epigrams from famous people and famous chess players. Here are a few examples of chess epigrams.

"Chess is a good mistress but a bad master." – Abrahams

"Chess will always be the master of us all." – Alexander Alekhine

"Of all the drugs in the world, chess must be the most permanently pleasurable." – Assaic

"To have a knight planted in your game at K6 is worse than a rusty nail in your knee." – Efim Bogolyubov

"The good player is always lucky." – Jose Capablanca

"Chess players are madmen of a certain quality, the way the artist is supposed to be, and isn't, in general." – Marcel Duchamp

"Chess holds its master in its own bonds, shackling the mind and brain so that the inner freedom of the very strongest must suffer." – Alburt Einstein

"A man that will take back a move at chess will pick a pocket." – Fenton

"You can only get good at chess if you love the game." – Bobby Fischer

"I like to make them squirm." – Bobby Fischer

"If I win, I'm a genius. If I don't, I'm not." – Bobby Fischer

"Life is a kind of chess, with struggle, competition, good and ill events." – Benjamin Franklin

"You cannot play chess if you are kind-hearted." – French proverb

"Chess is a sea in which a gnat may drink and an elephant may bathe." – Indian Proverb

"I often play a move I know how to refute." – Bent Larsen

"On the chessboard lies and hypocrisy do not survive long." – Emanuel Lasker

"It is impossible to win gracefully at chess." – Milne

"Help your pieces so they can help you." – Paul Morphy

"The isolated pawn casts gloom over the entire chessboard." – Aaron Nimzovich

"The pawn is the soul of chess." – Philidor

"Pawn endings are to chess what putting is to golf." – Cecil Purdy

"Chess is a foolish expedient for making idle people believe they are doing something very clever, when they are only wasting their time." - George Bernard Shaw

"Chess is ruthless: you've got to be prepared to kill people." – Nigel Short

"Chess is a cold bath for the mind." – Sir John Simon

"Between the opening and endgame the gods have placed the middlegame." – Siegbert Tarrasch

"Chess, like love, like music, has the powers to make men happy." – Tarrasch

"When you don't know what to do, wait for you opponent to get an idea; it is sure to be bad." – Tarrasch

"White lost because he failed to remember the right continuation and had to think up the moves himself." – Tarrasch

"All chessplayers should have a hobby." – S. Tartakower

"Tactics is knowing what to do when there is something to do; strategy is knowing what to do when there is nothing to do." – Tartakower

"The blunders are all there, waiting to be made." – Tartakower

"The winner of a game is the one who has made the next to last blunder." – Tartakower

"It is always better to sacrifice your opponent's men." – Tartakower

"There is no remorse like a remorse of chess. It is a curse upon man. There is no happiness in chess." – H.G. Wells

"Chess is like marriage. You cannot have a mate without a check. " – Brian Wood

Epishin, Vladimir (1965- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2614.

Epstein, Esther (1954- )

USSR Women’s Vice Champion in 1976 and US Women’s Champion in 1991 and 1997. In 1972, she was a Women’s International Master (WIM) in chess at 18. Her husband is Grandmaster Alexander Ivanov. She works as a Systems Manager for the Bio-Molecular Engineering Research Center at Boston University.

Erasmus Hall High School

Brooklyn high school (Flatbush Avenue, Church Avenue, Bedford Avenue, Snyder Avenue) that Bobby Fischer, Walter Browne, Raymond Weinstein and Barbra Streisand (graduated in 1959) attended. Barbra attended Erasmus at the same time as Bobby and once "had a crush" on him. Bobby dropped out at age 16 (1960) saying, "teachers are all jerks." Raymond became captain and first board and helped Erasmus win the Interscholastic Team Championship. Other notable alumni include Al Davis, Neil Diamond, Marty Ingels, Gabe Kaplan, Dorothy Kilgallen, Beverly Sills, Mickey Spillane, Barbara Stanwick. Erasmus Hall High School is the second oldest secondary school in the United States, established in 1787.

Ercole del Rio, Domenico (1718-1802)

Italian lawyer who, in 1750, wrote Sopra il giuoco degli scacchi osservazioni pratiche d’anonimo autore Modenese (Practical observations on the game of ches by an anonymous author of Modena).

Erenburg, Sergey (1983- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2595.

Ermenkov, Evgenij (1949- )

Bulgarian Grandmaster (1977). He won the Bulgarian Chess Championship in 1973, 1975, 1976, 1979, and 1984. He is now playing for the Palestine Federation.

Ermenkov – Miagmarsuren, Valetta 1980
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Nc3 a6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 e6 6.f4 Qc7 7.Be2 Nc6 8.Be3 Nf6 9.O-O Bd7 10.Qe1 Nxd4 11.Bxd4 Bc6 12.Bf3 Be7 13.Qg3 O-O 14.Rae1 Ne8 15.Kh1 Rc8 16.Qh3 b5 17.a3 a5 18.e5 b4 19.axb4 axb4 20.Ne4 d5 21.Nf6+ gxf6 22.Qh6 Bb5 23.exf6 Bc5 24.Be4 1-0

Ernst, Thomas (1960- )

Grandmaster from Sweden. His FIDE rating is 2549.

Eslon, Jaan (1952-2000)

Swedish master who was the first winner at Linares, Spain, in 1978.

Eslon – Clarke, Islington 1972
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 f6 4.d4 Nxd4 5.Nxd4 exd4 6.O-O a6 7.Bc4 b5 8.Bxg8 Rxg8 9.Qh5+ g6 10.Qd5 1-0

Espig, Lutz (1949- )

German Grandmaster (1983). He won the East German Chess Championship in 1969 and 1971.

Espig – Mohring, Potsdam 1974
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 d5 4.Bg2 Be7 5.O-O O-O 6.d4 Nbd7 7.Qc2 c5 8.cxd5 Nxd5 9.Nc3 Nb4 10.Qb3 cxd4 11.Nxd4 Qb6 12.Be3 Nc5 13.Qc4 Bd7 14.a3 Nc6 15.b4 Ne5 16.Qa2 Ng4 17.bxc5 Bxc5 18.Rab1 Qd8 19.Nc6 Bxc6 20.Bxc5 Bxg2 21.Kxg2 1-0

Estrin, Yakov (1923-1987)

7th Correspondence Chess World Champion (1972-1975).

Estrin – Okley, Correspondence 1966
1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.c4 Nb6 4.d4 d6 5.f4 dxe5 6.fxe5 Nc6 7.Be3 Bf5 8.Nc3 e6 9.Nf3 Qd7 10.Be2 Rd8 11.O-O bg4 12.Ng5 Nxc4 13.Bf2 Bxe2 14.Qxe2 Be7 15.Qh5 g6 16.Qh6 Nxd4 17.Qg7 Rf8 18.Nxh7 Qc6? (18...Nxb2) 19.Bxd4 Rxd4 20.Nxf8 (20...Nxe5 21.Nxg6 fxg6 22.Qxe5) 1-0

Euwe, Max (1901-1981)

Former FIDE President (1970-1978) who was twice world champion – 1935-37 and for 1 day in 1947. In 1947, the FIDE Congress voted for Euwe to be world champion since Alekhine died. However, the Soviet delegation, which joined FIDE in 1947, was late one day for this vote. They showed up the next day and had the title rescinded in favor of a match-tournament. He was once the former amateur heavyweight boxing champion of Europe. In the world championship match-tournament in 1948, Euwe wore gloves while playing his games. When he was asked why, he said the feeling of gloves on his hands psychologically induced in him a fighting spirit. He was a professor of mathematics (Ph.D. in mathematics in 1926) and mechanics. From 1930 to 1940 he was a schoolmaster at a girls’ school. Euwe learned chess from his mother, who once played in the Dutch Women’s Championship. In 1921 he won the Dutch championship for the first time. Euwe won the Dutch championship 12 times. In 1928 he won the Amateur World Championship. He could speak 5 languages. Max was involved in computer research in the late 1970s and was convinced that grandmasters would not have to worry about computers beating them for another 100 years.

Euwe – Abrahams, England 1939
1.d4 b5 2.e4 Bb7 3.f3 a6 4.c4 bxc4 5.Bxc4 e6 6.Nc3 d5 (6...Nf6) 7.Qb3 Nc6 8.exd5 Nxd4 9.Qxb7 Rb8 10.Qxa6 Ra8 11.Bb5+ Ke7 12.d6+ (12...cxd6 13.Bg5+ Nf6 14.Qb7+ Qd7 15.Qxd7 mate) 1-0

Evans, Larry (1932- )

American Grandmaster (1957). Best Blackjack player of any Grandmaster. He lives in Reno, Nevada. He has won the U.S. championship five times (1951, 1962, 1968, 1979, and 1980) and the U.S. Open four times. In 1947, at the age of 15, he was the Marshall Chess Club champion. In 1948, at the age of 16, he won the New York State Championship. In 1949 he was U.S. Junior Champion. In 1951, at age 19, he was the U.S. Open Champion, the U.S. Closed Champion, and the U.S. Speed Champion. In 1952 he played and won the last match for the U.S. Championship. He defeated Herman Steiner, 10-4. In 1956 the U.S. State Department appointed him as a “chess ambassador.” Evans once gave a simultaneous exhibition at an insane asylum, winning 39 and losing 1. When he went to congratulate the winner, the winner said, "You don't have to be crazy to play chess, but it sure helps!" He has written 25 chess books. He has written his national syndicated chess column, Evans on Chess, since 1971. He learned chess at the age of 12.

Evans – Bisquier, New York 1963
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Bg5 c5 5.cxd5 cxd4 6.Qxd4 Be7 7.e4 Nc6 8.Qe3 exd5 9.Bxf6 Bxf6 10.exd5+ Ne7 11.d6 Qxd6 12.Bb5+ Bd7 13.Rd1 Bxc3+ 14.bxc3 Qxd1+ 15.Kxd1 Bxb5 16.Nf3 O-O-O+ (16...Bc4) 17.Kc1 Nc6 18.Qc5 Bd3 19.Ne5 Rhe8 20.Nxf7 (20...Rd7 21.Nd6+, winning the exchange) 1-0

Evans, William Davies (1790-1872)

A captain in the mercantile marine and amateur chessplayer. He went to sea in 1804 at the age of 14, and later became a steamer ship captain in 1819. He discovered the Evans Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4) in 1824 while at sea. He first played it against Alexander McDonnell in 1826 and won. In 1845 Evans took part in the first chess game played by telegraph. He may have also founded the first chess club in Ireland. He was active in London chess events and Howard Staunton chose Evans to be his second at chess matches. Later, Harrwitz chose Evans to be his second. In 1871 he invented the system of white, green, and red lights signal lights at sea to prevent collisions. He died in 1872 and was buried in Ostend. His age is wrong on his grave.

Evergreen game

A name given by Stienitz to the Anderssen-Dufresne game, Berlin, 1852, because of its beauty.

Adolf Anderssen – Jean Dufresne, Berlin 1852, Evans Gambit
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Ba5 6.d4 exd4 7.O-O d3 8.Qb3 Qf6 9.e5 Qg6 10.Re1 Ne7 11.Ba3 b5 12.Qxb5 Rb8 13.Qa4 Bb6 14.Nbd2 Bb7 15.Ne4 Qf5 16.Bxd3 Qh5 17.Nf6+! gxf6 18.exf6 Rg8 19.Rd1! Qxf3 20.Rxe7! Nxe7 21.Qxd7+ Kxd7 22.Bf5+ Ke8 23.Bd7+ Kd8 24.Bxe7 mate

Exchequer, Chancellor of the

British finance minister. The title came from counting out money on a chequer-board used for chess. In 1080 the Normans named their financial departments of State l'excheiquier after the chessboard, which was used as a form of abacus.

Exclamation point

The first exclamation point (!) for a chess move appeared in game notes in Howard Staunton's Chess Player’s Chronicle in the 1840s, and it designated a bad move.

Ezra, Abraham ibn (1092-1167)

Spanish rabbi of Toledo who wrote the earliest Hebrew poem on chess. The Latin title of the poem is Carmina Rhythmica de Ludo Schahmat and is 76 lines long. It is the oldest source of chess rules.

Factor, Samuel (1892-1949)

Former Chicago and Illinois chess champion. He won the Western Championship (U.S. Open) in 1922 and 1930.

Fagan, Louisa Matilda (1850-1931)

Winner of a chess tournament in Bombay, India in which 12 men took part. She won all her games. She was disqualified because she was a woman playing in a club whose membership was confined to men. She appealed this decision in court and won. In 1897, she took 2nd place (behind Mary Rudge) in the Ladies’ International tournament in London. She became an emancipation activist.

Fahrni, Hans (1874-1939)

In 1892 he was joint Swiss chess champion (with Corrodi). He was the first master to play 100 opponents simultaneously. It took place in 1911 at Munich. His score was 55 wins, 39 draws, and 6 losses in seven and a half hours. In 1916, suffering from psychosis, he was hospitalized. He was released, but following a relapse, he was hospitalized again. In 1921 he was diagnosed with catatonic schizophrenia. He spent the rest of his life traveling between hospitals and chess tournaments. In 1922, he was the first to write a chess monograph on the opening 1.e4 Nf6, calling it Alekhine’s Defense.

Fahrni – Post, Barmen 1905
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 e6 4.Bf4 c5 5.Nc3 a6 6.cxd5 exd5 7.e3 Nc6 8.Bd3 Bg4 9.Be5 Nxe5 10.dxe5 Nd7 11.Be2 Bxf3 12.Bxf3 Nxe5 13.Bxd5 Qd7 14.O-O Be7 15.f4 Nc6 16.Bxf7+ Kd8 17.Qb3 Kc7 18.Nd5+ Kb8 19.Nb6 Qf5 20.Be6 1-0

Fairhurst, William Albert (1903-1982)

Editor of the Chess Amateur. Scottish Champion 11 times between 1932 and 1962. British Champion in 1937. Commonwealth Champion in 1951. He was awarded the International Master title in 1951. He moved to New Zealand in 1970. He played for Scotland and New Zealand in the chess Olympiads. He was an eminent civil engineer (PhD in Civil Engineering) and bridge designer.

Falkbeer, Ernst (1819-1885)

Austrian player who contributed to the King’s Gambit. In 1855 he gave the game between Anderssen and Kieseritzky played in 1851 its name of the Immortal Game. In 1856 he was one of the top five players in the world. From 1857 to 1859, he wrote a chess column for the London Sunday Times. From 1863 to 1867 he edited The Chess Player’s Magazine with Lowenthal. From 1877 to 1885, he wrote a chess column for the : Neue Illustrierte Zeitung.

Falkbeer – Zytogorski, London 1856
1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.Bc4 Qh4 4.Qe2 Bb4+ 5.c3 dxc3 6.bxc3 Bc5 7.Nf3 Qh5 8.g4 Qxg4? 9.Bxf7+ Kf8 10.Rg1 Qh3 11.Rg3 1-0

Farago, Ivan (1946- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1976). In 1981 he tied for 1st (with Portisch) in the Hungarian championship. In 1986 he won the Hungarian championship. He has a degree in economics.


British women’s chess champion in 1933. She was a servant of maharaja Sir Umar Hayat Khan. The British men’s champion was Mir Sultan Khan, also a servant of Sir Umar Khan.

Federov, Alexei (1972- )

Grandmaster from Belarus. His FIDE rating is 2611.

Fedorowicz, John (1958- )

American Grandmaster (1986) who was U.S. Junior co-champion in 1977 and champion in 1978. He won the U.S. Open in 1981 and the New York Open in 1989. He took 3rd in the 1984 and the 1987 US Championship. He is a four-time World Open champion. He is known as “the Fed.”

Fedorowicz – Gomez, Candas 1992
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Bb4+ 4.Bd2 c5 5.Bxb4 cxb4 6.g3 O-O 7.Bg2 d6 8.O-O Qe7 9.a3 bxa3 10.Rxa3 Nc6 11.Nc3 Nb4 12.Qd2 b6 13.Na4 Na6 14.Rfa1 Ne4 (14...d5) 15.Qe3 f5 16.Nc3 Nxc3 17.Qxc3 Nb8 (17...Nc7) 18.Ne1 (18...d5 19.cxd5 Bb7 20.Rxa7) 1-0

Fernandez Garcia, Jose (1954- )

Spanish Grandmaster (1986). His FIDE rating is 2456.

Fernandez Garcia – Torres, Seville 1994
1.e4 c5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Nf3 e6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 Be7 6.Bf4 a6 7.Nxc6 dxc6 8.Qxd8+ Bxd8 9.O-O-O Ne7 10.Bd6 O-O 11.Ba3 Re8 12.Rxd8 1-0

Ferrantes, Giovanni (1903-1995)

Editor of the Italian monthly chess magazine L’Italia Scacchistica for 46 years (1946 to 1992). He died in 1995.


The Federation Internationale des Eschecs (FIDE), or world chess federation, was founded in 1924 by Pierre Vincent of France. Dr. Alexander Rueb was the first FIDE president. The 15 founding countries were: Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Finland, France, Great Britain, Holland, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, Spain, Switzerland, and Yugoslavia. There are over 170 nations that are members, the 2nd largest organization in the world in terms of national membership (only soccer is larger). During World War II, FIDE headquarters was transferred to Argentina. During that time, President Augusto de Muro of the Argentine Chess Federation, became president of FIDE. The Soviet Union joined FIDE in 1947, but only after having Spain, a founder-member of FIDE, ejected from FIDE. FIDE once considered setting up a fund for retired and poor chess masters. The FIDE Presidents have been Alexander Rueb (1924-1949), Folke Rogard (1949-1970), Max Euwe (1970-1978), Fridrik Olafsson (1978-1982), Florencio Campomanes (1982-1995), and Kirsan Ilyumzhinov (1995-present). FIDE has around 59,000 active players. The average FIDE rating is 2160.

FIDE Categories (FIDE Category Tournaments)

Cat 01 2250-2275

Cat 02 2275-2300

Cat 03 2300-2325

Cat 04 2325-2350

Cat 05 2350-2375

Cat 06 2375-2400

Cat 07 2400-2425

Cat 08 2425-2450

Cat 09 2450-2475

Cat 10 2475-2500

Cat 11 2500-2525

Cat 12 2525-2550

Cat 13 2550-2575 – Wijk aan Zee 1988

Cat 14 2575-2600 – Bugojno 1978

Cat 15 2600-2625 – Belgrade 1989

Cat 16 2625-2650 – Johannesburg 1981

Cat 17 2650-2675 – Linares 1991

Cat 18 2675-2700 – Reggio Emilia 1991-92; 2004 Russian Ch; Dortmund 2003; Corus 2003

Cat 19 2700-2725 – Dos Hermanes 1997; Corus 2004 and 2005

Cat 20 2725-2750 – Linares 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005; Mtel Masters 2005; Sofia 2005

Cat 21 2750-2775 – Las Palmas 1996 (2756 average rating); Dortmund 2001 (2755 average rating)

FIDE Countries

There are 156 countries in FIDE. Countries not included are: Antigua, Benin, Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Cayman Islands, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Cook Islands, Djobouti, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Gabon, Gambia, Grenada, Guinea, Guyana, Kirbati, Lesotho, Liberia, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Micronesia, Nauru, Niger, North Korea, Oman, Palau, Saint Kitts, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent, Samoa, Sao Tome, Saudia Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Swaziland, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, and Vanuata. Germany has the most FIDE rated players, followed by Russia and Spain. Russia has the most International Masters and Grandmasters. Germany has the most masters.

FIDE Founders

On July 20, 1924, 15 delegates signed the proclomation act of the Federation Internationale des Echecs (FIDE). The 15 founders were Abonyi (Hungary), Grau (Argentina), Gudju (Romania), Marusi (Italy), Nicolet (Switzerland), Ovadija (Yugoslavia), Renalver y Zamora (Spain), Rawlins (Great Britain), Rueb (Netherlands), Skalicka (Czechoslovakia), Smith (Canada), Towbin (Poland), Tschepurnoff (Finland), Vincent (France), and Weltjens (Belgium).

Field, Ted (1953- )

Sponsor of the New York leg of the 1990 Kasparov-Karpov world championship match. He produced THREE MEN AND A BABY, COCKTAIL, OUTRAGEOUS FORTUNE, and CLASS ACTION. He bought Panavision for $52.5 million and sold it for $150 million. He is heir to the Marshall Field department store fortune and founder and chairman of Interscope Records. His worth is estimated to be over $600 million. In 1991 he won the Koltanowski medal.

Filip, Miroslav (1928- )

Czech grandmaster (1955). He won the championship of Czechoslovakia in 1950, 1952, and 1954. He was a Candidate in 1956 and 1962, the first Czech to make it to the Candidates. He played on 12 Czech Chess Olympiad teams. He is a lawyer with a doctor in jurisprudence.

Filippov, Valerij (1975- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating in 2621.


The first time chess appeared in film was from a scene in A Chess Dispute in 1903. The first film to deal exclusively with chess was Chess Fever, made in Moscow in 1925 and starring Capablanca. The James Bond film, From Russia with Love (1963), used a position from a Spassky-Bronstein game that was played in Leningrad in 1960.

Fine, Reuben (1914-1993)

US Grandmaster (1950) and one of the best chessplayers in the U.S. in the 1930s. He took first place in 23 of the 27 important events in his chess career. During World War II he was employed by the Navy to calculate where enemy submarines might surface based on positional probability. He was also a translator who could speak French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Yiddish, and German. He later did research on Japanese Kamikaze attacks. He gave up chess to become a psychoanalyst (PhD in psychology). In 1956 the National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis published his work, The Psychology of the Chess Player. The book is a Freudian account of the game of chess. The king is held to represent the father, while the queen is the mother. The other pieces are taken to be phallic symbols. Fine won 8 U.S. Opens but never the U.S. Closed Championship. He was the only player to have a total plus score in his games against world champions without being a world champion himself.

Buerger – Fine, Margate 1937
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 e6 3.c4 d5 4.Bg5 Bb4+ 5.Nc3 dxc4 6.Qa4+ Nc6 7.e4 Bd7 8.Qc2 h6 9.Bh4 g5 10.Bg3 g4 11.O-O-O? (11.Nd2) 11...gxf3 12.d5 exd5 13.exd5 Ne7 14.Bxc4 Bd6 15.Rhe1 fxg2 16.Rd3 Kf8 17.Rf3 Ng6 18.Rfe3 Kg7 19.f4 Bxf4 20.Qf2 Ng4 (and 21...Nxe3) 0-1

Finegold, Benjamin (1969- )

International Master from Michigan. In 2005, he tied for 1st at the National Open. He is a former U.S. Junior Champion. He is the highest rated IM in the United States and now has three GM norms. His USCF rating is 2649. Ben’s father played Bobby Fischer in 1963. His brother, Mark, is a USCF master. His wife, Kelly, qualified for the 2006 US Championship. Ben became a master at the age of 14,a Life Master at the age of 15, a Senior Master at 16, and an International Master at 20.

Finegold – Gelfand, Amsterdam 1989
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 c5 5.dxc5 Qc7 6.Nf3 Bxc5 7.Bg5 a6 8.e3 Be7 9.Be2 b6 10.O-O Bb7 11.Rfd1 d6 12.Rd2 Nbd7 13.Rad1 O-O-O 14.b4 h6 15.Bf4 e5 16.Bg3 g5 17.a4 Rdg8 18.a5 bxa5 19.c5 g4 20.cxd6 Bxd6 21.Rxd6 gxf3 22.Bxa6 Bxa6 23.Rxa6 axb4 24.Ra8+ Nb8 25.Qf5+ 1-0

Fink, Adolf Jay (1890-1956)

Chess problem composer and landmark figure in California chess. He became interested in chess after the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. He played chess while camping on the hills and seeking refuge from the earthquake and fires. He won the California State Championship in 1928, 1929, and 1945.

Finkel, Alexander (1975- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating in 2453. He is a leading chess author and a leading contirbuter to ChessBase magazine. He graduated from Tel-Aviv Univerisity law school in 2004.

Finkelstein, Milton (1920-2001)

Former President of the Marshall Chess Club.

Finn, Julius (1871-1931)

New York State chess champion in 1901 (first prize was $40), 1907, and 1908 (winning the Rice Trophy for winning the State Chess Championship three time). At one time, he was director of the Manhattan Chess Club. In 1921, he was the referee for the Lasker-Capablanca World Chess Championship in Havana. In 1924, he was one of the organizers of the New York International of 1924. In 1927 he was President of the 1927 New York International. He performed many blindfold exhibitions (as many as 12 boards) and demonstrations in the early 20th century.

Firdausi (934-1020)

One of Persia’s greatest poets. In 1011 he finished the great epic poem Shah -nameh (Book of Kings) which recounted the history of chess. In this poem, he tells of the arrival of envoys of an Indian rajah at the court of the Persian Shah Chosroes I bringing gifts which uncluded a gme depicting a battle of two armies. This massive poem took 35 years to write and has 60,000 verse-lines. It is the only pre-Islamic source which gives such details as the names of the chess pieces. The poem was presented to the Sultan of Iran, who rewarded Firdausi with a pitiful amount of money. Firdausi tossed the money to a bath attendant and left for Afghanistan.

Fischer, Robert (Bobby) (1943-2008)

11th world chess champion (1972-1975). The youngest national junior champion (13), the youngest American chess champion ever (14), the youngest grandmaster up to that time (15 years, 6 months, 1 day), and the youngest Candidate for the World Championship ever (15). Fischer once withdrew from a chess tournament because a woman was playing in the event (she was Lisa Lane and U.S. woman champion). His I.Q. has been recorded to be over 180. He received $3.65 million for defeating Spassky in the Fischer-Spassky II match in Yugoslavia in 1992. In 1962 he boasted, "Women are weakies. I can give Knight odds to any woman in the world!" In 1970 he won the Blitz Tournament of the Century in Herceg Novi, Yugoslavia by a score of 19 out of 22. After the tournament he called off from memory the moves of all his 22 games, involving more that 1,000 moves. In 1981 he was arrested in Pasadena under suspicion of a bank robber. He later wrote of this incident in a book entitled, I WAS TORTURED IN THE PASADENA JAILHOUSE. In 1956 13 year old Bobby Fischer beat Donald Byrne after a brilliant queen sacrifice. This game has been dubbed the “Game of the Century”. In 1996 Fischer launched a new game called “Fischerrandom Chess” in which the major pieces on the back rank are randomly shuffled behind their pawns. This would be a better test of a player’s skill rather than relying on opening theory and memorizing opening lines. In 1970-71 he won 20 straight games. At Palma de Mallorca in 1970 he won his last 7 games. He then defeated Taimanov 6-0. He then defeated Larsen 6-0. He then won his first game against Petrosian in the Candidates final. He lost his 2nd game match against Petrosian. He won the US chess championship eight times. When Fischer won his 8th title in 1966, his first place prize was $2,500. In 2005, he accepted the offer of citizenship from Iceland after being detained for nine months in Japan for trying to leave the country using an invalid U.S. passport.

Donald Byrne – Bobby Fischer, New York (Rosenwald), Rd 8, Oct 17, 1956 Gruenfeld
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.d4 O-O 5.Bf4 d5 6.Qb3 dxc4 7.Qxc4 c6 8.e4 Nbd7 9.Rd1 Nb6 10.Qc5 Bg4 11.Bg5 Na4 12.Qa3 [12.Nxa4 Nxe4] 12...Nxc3 13.bxc3 Nxe4! 14.Bxe7 Qb6 15.Bc4 Nxc3 16.Bc5 Rfe8+ 17.Kf1 Be6! 18.Bxb6 Bxc4+ 19.Kg1 Ne2+ 20.Kf1 Nxd4+ 21.Kg1 Ne2+ 22.Kf1 Nc3+ 23.Kg1 axb6 24.Qb4 Ra4 25.Qxb6 Nxd1 26.h3 Rxa2 27.Kh2 Nxf2 28.Re1 Rxe1 29.Qd8+ Bf8 30.Nxe1 Bd5 31.Nf3 Ne4 32.Qb8 b5 33.h4 h5 34.Ne5 Kg7 35.Kg1 Bc5+ 36.Kf1 [36.Kh1 Ra1+ 37.Kh2 Bg1+ 38.Kh3 Na7] 36...Ng3+ 37.Ke1 Bb4+ [or 37...Re2+ 38.Kd1 Bb3+ 39.Kc1 Ba3+ 40.Kb1 Re1 mate] 38.Kd1 Bb3+ 39.Kc1 Ne2+ 40.Kb1 Nc3+ 41.Kc1 Rc2 mate 0-1

Ghitescu-Fischer, Leipzig 1960
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 O-O 5.Bd3 d5 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.O-O dxc4 8.Bxc4 Bd6 9.Bb5 e5 10.Bxc6 exd4 11.exd4 bxc6 12.Bg5 Re8 13.Qd3 c5 14.dxc5? (14.Rfe1) 14...Bxh2+ (and 15...Qxd3) 0-1

Fischer Chess Clock

Aimed at eliminating time scrambles by allocating time at the beginning of a game and adding a minute increment after each move. The clock was patented (#4,884,255) by Fischer in 1989 and was used in the Fischer-Spassky II match in Yugoslavia. Prior to the match, a working model had never been constructed. A clock was made for the event in 5 days.

Fischerandom Chess

Bobby Fischer’s attempt to create a new chess variation. All the pawns are set up normally, but the White pieces are shuffled randomly along the first rank with the condition that the King must be between two rooks. The Black pieces are then placed as a mirror image of the White ones. Normal castling moves apply.

Fischer Pustan, Regina Wender (1913-1997)

Mother of Bobby Fischer who was born in Switzerland. She was a riveter and welder in a defense plant during World War II, became a grade school teacher, registered nurse, physician, translator, and political activist. From 1933 to 1938 she studied medicine at the First Moscow Medical Institute in the Soviet Union. Her medical degree was not valid in the United States. She chained herself to the White House gate in 1960 to protest the government's refusal to send a chess team to East Germany. In 1968, at the age of 55, she received a medical degree from the Friedrich Schiller University in East Germany and a Ph.D. in hematology. She spoke 8 languages.

Fishbein, Alexander (1968- )

Grandmaster from New Jersey. His FIDE rating is 2516.

Fiske, Daniel Willard (1831-1904)

Born in New York in 1831. From 1852 to 1859, he was the librarian to the Astor Library in Manhattan. In 1857, he was the champion of the New York Chess Club. He organized the First American Congress in 1857 and published the first American chess magazine Chess Monthly (co-edited by Paul Morphy). The magazine began in January, 1857, and ended in May, 1861. In 1861 he was appointed as an Attaché to the American Embassy in Vienna. In 1859, he was elected General Secretary of the American Geographical Society. He had a fascination with Iceland and donated his 1,200 chess books to the National Library of Reykjavik. He wrote The Book of the First American Chess Congress (1859) and Chess in Iceland (1905). In 1868, he became the first librarian of Cornell University and was also professor of North European Languages (he taught Old Icelandic, German, Swedish, and Danish). In 1880, he married Jennie McGraw, daughter of multi-millionaire John McGraw, lumber merchant. She died a year later from tuberculosis. In her will, she gave Daniel Fiske $300,000, her brother $550,000, and much of the rest of the money (several million dollars) to Cornell University. Due to University by-laws, Cornell could not accept the full amount of McGraw’s gift. When Fiske realized that the University had failed to inform him of this restriction, he launched a legal assault to reacqire the money, known as The Great Will Case. In 1883, he severed all connections with Cornell University and moved to Florence, Italy. He became a book collector and dealer. He first visited Iceland in 1885. In 1900, he founded the Reykjavik Chess Club. He was the editor of the first Icelandic chess magazine in 1901. It was published in Venice, Italy. On September 17, 1904, he died at Frankfort-on-theMain, Germany.

Flamberg, Alexander (1880-1926)

Polish master. In 1910 he won the Warsaw championship ahead of Rubinstein. He also defeated Bogoljubov in a match with 4 wins and 1 draw. In 1914 he was interned during the Mannheim tournament by Germany after the declaration of war against Russia. Flamberg was not Russian and was probably released in 1916.

Flamberg – Bogoljubov, Triberg 1915
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.f4 d5 4.fxe5 Nxe4 5.Nf3 Bb4 6.Be2 c6 7.O-O Qb6+ 8.d4 Nxc3 9.bxc3 Bxc3 10.Ba3 Bxa1 11.Qxa1 h6 12.Bd6 Na6 13.Nh4 Nc7 14.a4 Ne6 15.Nf5 Rg8 16.a5 Qd8 17.Qa3 Ng5 18.Bxe7 Qc7 19.Nd6+ Kxe7 20.Nb5+ 1-0

Flear, Glenn (1959- )

English Grandmaster (1987). He now lives in France.

Maclean – Flear, Oxford 1979
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O b5 6.Bb3 Bb7 7.d4 Nxd4 8.Nxe5 Nxb3 9.axb3 Nxe4 10.Re1 Bd6 11.Qd4 O-O 12.Nc3 Bc5 0-1

Fleischmann, Leo (1881-1930)

Hungarian chess master. When playing chess, he used his Hungarian surname Forgacs. He won the 1907 Hungarian Championship.

Forgacs – Leussen, Barmen 1905
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 Nd7 4.Bc4 c6 5.c3 Be7 6.Qb3 Ngf6 7.Bxf7+ Kf8 8.Ng5 Nb6 9.dxe5 Nfd5 10.Ne6+ Bxe6 11.Bxe6 Bg5 12.f4 Bxf4 13.O-O dxe5 14.g3 Qf6 15.gxf4 exf4 16.Na3 h5 17.Be3 f3 18.Bc5+ Ke8 19.Bf5 1-0

Flesch, Janos (1933-1983)

In 1960 he played 52 games simultaneously blindfolded in Budapest – a world record. He won 31 games, lost 18 games, and drew 3 games in 12 hours of play. He became an International Master in 1963 and an Honorary Grandmaster in 1980. While returning from the Kasparov-Korchnoi match in London to a chess tournament in Rams gate, he became involved in a car accident. He and his wife died in the crash.

Flesch – Humor, Budapest 1960
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.d4 g4 5.Bxf4 gxf3 6.Qxf3 Qf6 7.Nc3 Ne7 8.Nb5 Na6 9.Bxc7 Bg7 10.Nd6+ Kf8 11.Qxf6 Bxf6 12.Bxa6 bxa6 13.Rf1 Ng8 14.e5 1-0

Flohr, Saloman (1908-1983)

Czech/Soviet Grandmaster (1950). In 1937 Salo Flohr was nominated by FIDE to be the official candidate to play Alekhine for the World Championship. Arrangements were started for a match with Alekhine, but the plans were dropped when Flour’s adopted homeland of Czechoslovakia was annexed by Germany in 1938. Flohr became a refugee for a second time and went to Russia. He was orphaned in World War I and was taken as a child refugee to Bohemia. He won the Hungarian championship 9 times and played in 11 Olympiads for Hungary. He married a ballerina.

Flohr – Gig, Liberia 1934
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 d5 5.cxd5 Qxd5 6.e3 O-O 7.Nge2 c5 8.Bd2 Qd8 9.a3 cxd4 10.Nxd4 Ba5 11.Be2 Bb6 12.Nf3 Nc6 13.O-O Qe7 14.Rfe1 e5 15.Ng5 h6?? (15...Qd8) 16.Nd5! (16...Q any 17.Nxf6+ and 18.Qh7 mate) 1-0

Flores, Rodrigo (1913- )

Born in Santiago, Chile. At 12 he played in the Chilean Championship and finished fourth. He won the Chilean championship 3 times. He was the winner of the 1946-47 Marshall Chess Club championship.

Foleys, Jan (1908-1952)

Czech International Master (1950). He won the Czechoslovakian championship in 1940 and 1943. In 1951 he qualified for the interzonal tournament to be held at Saltsjobaden in 1952, but died of leukemia before it took place.

Fominyh, Alexander (1959- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2518.

Forbes, Duncan (1798-1868)

Scottish professor of Oriental languages and the author of various articles and books on chess history. He taught in Calcutta for several years before returning to England in 1826. From 1837 to 1861, he was Professor of Oriental Languages at King’s College in London. During this time, he also worked at the British Museum cataloging their collection of Persian mansuscripts. In 1860 he wrote A History of Chess (he dedicated his 400-page book to Howard Staunton). He advanced the theory that a four-handed dice-chess game was played in India as far back as 3000 BC. Today’s chess historians says that chess originated in India around 500AD, and that the four-handed dice-chess games was just an unsuccessful variant.

Forgacs, Leo

See Fleischmann

Forintos, Gyozo (1935- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1974). Forintos (pronounced Four’-in-tot) won the Hungarian championship in 1968-69. He is an economist. His daughter married English GM Tony Kosten.

Forintos – Adorjan, Budapest 1968
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Nf3 Bg7 5.Qb3 dxc4 6.Qxc4 O-O 7.e4 Na6 8.Qa4 c5 9.d5 Qb6 10.Bxa6 bxa6 11.O-O e6 12.Bg5 Bd7 13.Qc2 Rab8 14.Rab1 exd5 15.Bxf6 Qxf6 16.Nxd5 Qd6 17.Rfd1 Rfe8 18.b3 a5 19.a4 Qc6 20.Qc4 Bc8 21.Nd4 1-0

Forsberg, Bruno Christian (1892-1961)

Marshall Chess Club Champion in 1920-21.

Foster, Ursula (1927-2004)

Very active correspondence and tournament chess player in northern California (I played her several times) and had been ranked among the top 50 female players in the country. She was a Jewish survivor of the Holocaust and was mentioned by name in Anne Frank’s Diary of a Young Girl. She had been a classmate of Anne Frank. Her older brother died in the gas chambers at Auschwitz.

Fox, Albert Whiting (1881-1964)

Former champion of the Manhattan Chess Club and the Brooklyn Chess Club. He took 10th-11th place at Cambridge Springs in 1904.

Fox, Maurice (1898-1988)

Ukrainian born chess player who moved to England, then Canada in 1923. In Canada he won the Canadian championship 8 times (1927, 1929, 1931, 1932, 1935, 1938, 1940, 1949).

Fraenkel, Henrich (1897-1986)

Chess author, who wrote under the pen name of Assaic (Caissa spelled backwards). He wrote a weekly chess column for the New Statesman.


The first French reference to chess is in a report of the siege of Antioch. During the First Crusade, Peter the Hermit found the Turkish general playing chess. In 110 King Louis VI of France was captured by an English knight, who shouts that the king has been captured. The King escaped yelling, "Ignorant and insolent knight. Not even in chess can a King be taken." In 1962 Bobby Dudley won the first USCF rated event in France.

Franco Ocampos, Zenon (1956- )

Grandmaster from Paraguay. His FIDE rating is 2526. He now lives in Spain.

Franklin, Benjamin (1706-1790)

Wrote the first chess article published in America, The Morals of Chess. Franklin wrote it in London in 1779 and reproduced in a refined version in the Columbian Magazine in Philadelphia in December 1786. In 1791 a translation from the French reprint was published in St. Petersburg. This was the first book on chess published in Russia. On one of his visits to France, he was playing a chess game with the Duchess of Bourbon. She made a king move next to Franklin’s king and Franklin mentioned that was an illegal move, She responded, “We do not take kings so.” Franklin responded, “We do in America.” Franklin played Thomas Jefferson a lot of chess with an even score. In Franklin’s autobiography, he described using chess as a way to learn foreign languages.

Fred, Autos (1917-2003)

Champion of Finland in 1946-47 and 1955. He represented Finland in several chess Olympiads.

Frederick the Great (1712-1786)

King of Prussia and an enthusiastic chess player who played a correspondence game with his early tutor, Voltaire, by royal courtier between Berlin and Paris. He may have also played The Turk chess automaton in 1785. Philidor gave chess exhibitions for Frederick the Great in 1750.

Fredkin Prize

A $100,000 prize created in 1980 by computer science professor Edward Fred kin, for the first computer to beat a reigning world chess champion. The prize was awarded to the inventors of the Deep Blue machine in 1997. Deep Blue beat world champion Gary Kasparov in the final game of a tied, 6-game match in May, 1997. The Deep Blue inventors were Fang Hsu, Murray Campbell, and Joseph Hone. In 1983 he gave a $5,000 prize to the programmers of the first chess program to attain a Master’s rating (Belle). In 1988 he gave a $10,000 prize to the programmers of the first program that achieved Grandmaster status (Deep Thought).

Frenklakh, Jennie (1980- )

USCF chess master at 16. In 1991 she won the California Elementary Scholastic Championship. In 1993, she won the U.S. Junior Championship for players under 13 and represented the United States in four World under-12, under-14, and under-20 championships. She has represented the U.S. six time at the World Junior Chess Championships, finishing 2nd in 1997.

Fressinet, Laurent (1981- )

Grandmaster from France. His FIDE rating is 2627.

Frey, Kenneth (1950- )

Born in Paris. Finnish citizen. Has lived in Mexico since 1959. International Master (1975). Mexico’s top chess player for the past 10 years. Represented Mexico six times in the Chess Olympiad.

Hernandez – Frey, Bled 2002
1.c4 e6 2.Nf3 d5 3.cxd5 exd5 4.d4 Nf6 5.Nc3 c6 6.e3 Bf5 7.Bd3 Bxd3 8.Qxd3 Bd6 9.O-O O-O 10.Bd2 Nbd7 11.h3 Qe7 12.Rfe1 Ne4 13.Rac1 f5 14.Na4 g5 15.Re2 g4 16.hxg4 fxg4 17.Ne5 Bxe5 18.dxe5 Nxe5 19.Qc2 Nf3+ 0-1

Freymann, Sergey von (1882-1946)

Four-time Uzbekistan champion. He finished 2nd in the 1929 USSR championship.

Friedel, Frederick

In 1987, he founded the software company ChessBase.

Friedman, Larry

Winner of the first Junior Chess Championship in the U.S. (Chicago, 1946). Hans Berliner and Philip Lucerne tied for 2nd place.

Friend, Bernard (1920- )

Chess player from New Jersey who first became a chess master at the age of 71, in 1991. He started playing chess in 1939.

Fries, Victor (1956-2005)

American International Master (1982) from New York, born in Chile. He was the chess coach of Patrick Wolff and Ilea Ureic, both becoming Grandmasters. He was unable to make a living as a chess player and supported himself by driving a taxi in New York and Los Angeles. He was a chess teacher in many Westchester schools.

From Russia With Love

Ian Fleming’s From Russia With Love, is a James Bond novel that became the second film in the James Bond series in 1963. The movie opens up with a chess tournament in which grandmaster Kristen, a secret agent of SMERSH, is playing a match. The position on a wallboard is taken from an actual game.

Boris Spassky – David Bronstein, Leningrad (USSR Championship) 1960, King’s Gambit
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 d5 4.exd5 Bd6 5.Nc3 Ne7 6.d4 O-O 7.Bd3 Nd7 8.O-O h6 9.Ne4 Nxd5 10.c4 Ne3 11.Bxe3 fxe3 12.c5 Be7 13.Bc2 Re8 14.Qd3 e2 15.Nd6 Nf8 16.Nxf7 exf1=Q+ 17.Rxf1 Bf5 [17...Kxf7 18.Ne5+ Kg8 19.Nf6 mate] 18.Qxf5 Qd7 19.Qf4 Bf6 20.N3e5 Qe7 21.Bb3 Bxe5 22.Nxe5 Kh7 23.Qe4 + [23...Kh8 24.Rxf8+ Rxf8 25.Ng6+ Kh7 26.Nxf8+ Kh8 27.Qh7 mate] 1-0

From, Martin (1828-1895)

Danish player who popularized 1.f4 e5, From’s Gambit. He was a prisoner inspector by profession.

Mollastrom – From, Copenhagen 1862
1.f4 e5 2.fxe5 d6 3.exd6 Bxd6 4.Nf3 Nh6 5.e4 Ng4 6.g3 Nxh2 7.Rxh2 Bxg3+ 8.Ke2 Bxh2 9.Nxh2 f5 10.Bg2 fxe4 11.Bxe4 Qh4 12.Qh1 O-O 13.Bd5+ Kh8 14.Qg1 Qh5+ 15.Bf3 Rxf3 16.Nxf3 Bg4 17.d3 Nc6 18.Bf4 Rf8 19.Bg3 Rxf3 20.Ke1 Qh6 21.Nc3 Nb4 0-1

Frydman, Achilles (1905-1940s)

Polish master from Lodi. He took 5th place in the 1935 Polish championship, behind Tartakower, Nadir, Pauline Frydman, and H. Friedman. He also played in the 1937 Poland chess championship in Curate. He had just been released from a mental asylum and had been warned not to play chess for awhile. In the 15th round of the 21 round event, he lost his game to Miguel Nadir and suffered a nervous breakdown. Frydman could not finish the tournament. Reuben Fine, in his book, The Psychology of the Chess Player, stated that Achilles Frydman had run through the hotel without any clothes, shouting “Fire!” George Koltanowski, in one of his columns, wrote that Frydman insisted in walking around in the lobby naked. A Polish newspaper column reported that A. Frydman had caused many difficulties for the tournament management and for the players. Gideon Stahlberg had the room next to Frydman and could not sleep because Frydman would yell “check” and “checkmate” all night long. Najdorf blamed two losses on Frydman’s interruptions (Frydman would run to the phone after every move and make a long distance phone call). Xavier Tartakower took first place in this event and Achilles Frydman finished in 20th place (out of 22) with 6.5 points. In 1938, during a tournament in Lodz, Achilles Frydman showed up naked to play Tartakower. A. Frydman was later put in a mental asylum in Kocborowo. Achilles Frydman died in the 1940s, probably a victim of the Holocaust.

Achilles Frydman – Schaechter, Jurata, Poland 1937
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 g6 5.d4 exd4 6.Bg5 f6 7.Bf4 Bb4+ 8.c3 dxc3 9.Nxc3 Bxc3+ 10.bxc3 d6 11.Rb1 Qe7 12.Qd5 Qd7 13.Bb3 Ne5 14.Bg3 Nh6 15.Rd1 Qe7 16.O-O Nhf7 17.Nxe5 Nxe5 18.f4 Nc6 19.e5 dxe5 20.fxe5 f5 21.Bh4 1-0

Frydman, Paulin(o) (1905-1982)

Polish International Master (1955) from Warsaw who played in seven Chess Olympiads for Poland (1928, 1930, 1931, 1935, 1937, 1939). After participating in the chess Olympics in Buenos Aires, he stayed in Argentina after the outbreak of World War II. In 1936, he took equal 6th at Bad Podebrady, Czechoslovakia, behind Flohr, Alekhine, Foltys, Pirc, and Stahlberg. He won the Warsaw championship in 1931, 1932, 1933, and 1936. He took 2nd place in the 1926 Polish championship (behind Przepiorka) and 2nd-4th (with Najdorf and H. Friedmann) in the 1935 Polish championship (won by Tartakower). Achilles Frydman took 5th place.

P. Frydman – Guimard, Buenos Aires 1941
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 dxe4 5.Nxe4 Nbd7 6.Nxf6+ gxf6 7.Bh4 c6 8.Qh5 Bb4+ 9.c3 Be7 10.Nf3 Nf8 11.Bc4 Ng6 12.Bg3 O-O 13.h4 Kh8 14.Ng5 1-0

P. Frydman – Vidmar, Ujpest 1934
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 c6 4.cxd5 cxd5 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Bf4 e6 7.e3 Be7 8.Bd3 O-O 9.O-O a6 10.Rc1 Bd7 11.Ne5 Rc8 12.a3 Na5 13.Qf3 b5 14.Qh3 Nc4 15.Nxd5 g6 16.Nxe7+ Qxe7 17.Bxc4 Rxc4 18.Rxc4 bxc4 19.Bg5 1-0

Ftacnik, Lubomir (1957- )

Slovak Grandmaster (1980). He has a degree in solid state physics. In 1976 he took 2nd place in the World Junior Championship. Czech champion in 1981, 1982, 1983, and 1985.

Hertweck – Ftacnik, Baden-Baden 1987
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.Bg5 Bg7 4.Nbd2 d5 5.e3 O-O 6.Be2 c5 7.c3 Qb6 8.Qb3 Nc6 9.Bxf6 Bxf6 10.Qxd5 Qxb2 11.O-O cxd4 12.cxd4 Be6 13.Qc5 Rac8 14.Qc1? (14.Qb5) 14...Nxd4 (15.Qd1 Qxa1 16.Qxa1 Nxe2+ 17.Kh1 Bxa1) 0-1

Furman, Semyen (1920-1978)

Soviet Grandmaster (1966) and coach who was Karpov’s chief trainer since 1969. He played in 13 USSR Championships. He was 3rd in 1948. He died three months before Karpov’s world championship match with Korchnoi in 1978. He was 57. He learned chess when he was 15.

Khalilbeili – Furman, Tbilisi 1956
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 c5 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.g3 c4 7.e4 dxe4 8.Ng5 Qxd4 9.Bf4 Bb4 10.Ngxe4?? (10.Qxd4) 10...Qxe4+ 0-1

Fuster, Geza (1910-1990?)

Hungarian chess champion in 1941 and International Master in 1969. He later moved to Canada and represented Canada in the interzonal at Portoroz in 1958. He took last place win 1 win, 2 draws, and 17 losses. He almost beat Fischer at Portoroz, but lost during time pressure. He played for Canada in two Chess Olympiads in 1958 and 1970. His highest rating was 2530, ranked #62 in the world in 1943.

Fuster – Negyesy, Budapest 1947
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 c6 4.cxd5 cxd5 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Bf4 e6 7.e3 Be7 8.Bd3 O-O 9.O-O Nh5 10.Be5 f6 11.Ng5 fxe5 12.Bxh7+ Kh8 13.Nf7+ 1-0

Gabriel, Christian (1975- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2531.

Gaige, Jeremy (1927- )

Newspaperman from Philadelphia, chess archivist and author of Chess Tournament Crosstables (four volumes), Chess Tournaments- A Checklist (two volumes), Chess Personalia A Biobibliography, and other books.

Galkin, Alexander (1979- )

Russian chess player and the 1999 World Junior Chess Champion. He won the 37th World Junior Championship in Yerevan, Armenia.

Gallagher, Joseph (1964- )

British-born Grandmaster from Switzerland. His FIDE rating is 2544. He won the British championship in 2001. He won the Swiss championship in 2005.


A wrestling term for tripping up the heels. It is derived from the Italian gamba (leg) and gambitare (set traps). Ruy Lopez was the first to use it as a chess term for traps in his book in 1561 to describe the Damiano Gambit, 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f6 3.Nxe5. Ruy Lopez learned the term from a visit to Rome, who used it as a slang term. Greco introduced the term into England and France in 1623 (Joachimo’s Gambettos).


The police raided a chess tournament in Cleveland in 1973, arrested the tournament director and confiscated the chess sets on charges of allowing gambling (cash prizes to winners) and possession of gambling devices (the chess sets). This incident was repeated in Los Angeles in 1989. L.A.P.D. vice officers raided a nightly chess tournament at Dad's Donuts. The cited three men for gambling after finding $1.50 on the table. The detectives staged the raid after one tried unsuccessfully to join a blitz game. The detective then pulled out his badge and said "you are under arrest," and the others swooped in. In 1988 undercover police arrested a chess player, Arkady Flom, in a park in New York City after he won a marked $5 bill against a cop posing as a construction worker during a blitz game. He was jailed for 3 days, his medication was confiscated and he had a heart attack. The arrest was tossed out by a judge who said chess isn’t gambling because it’s a game of skill, not chance. Five years later the city settled the wrongful arrest lawsuit out of court for $100,000.

Gaprindashvili, Nona (1941- )

The first woman to achieve the men's International Grandmaster title, in 1978. She became the first woman to win a "men's" chess tournament when she tied for first place at Lone Pine in 1977. She has had a perfume named after her in Russia. A Tbilisi perfume factory sold the perfume in a bottle shaped like a chess Queen. She maintained her maiden name after marrying her husband Chichikadze. She was the Women’s World Chess Champion for 16 years, from 1962 to 1978. In 1962 she won the title by defeating Elizaveta Bykova with a score of 9-2. In 1978 she lost to Maya Chiburdanidze, who as 17.

Mardle – Gaprindashvili, Hastings 1964
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 e6 5.Be3 Nf6 6.Nd2 e5 7.Nxc6 dxc6 8.f3 Be7 9.Bc4 O-O 10.O-O Nh5 11.Nb3 Bg5 12.Bc5 Qf6 13.Bxf8 Be3+ 14.Kh1?? (14.Rf2) 14...Ng3+ (15.hxg3 Qh6 mate) 0-1

Garcia, Gildardo (1954- )

Grandmaster from Columbia. His FIDE rating is 2453.

Garcia Gonzales, Guillermo (1953-1990)

Cuban Grandmaster (1976) and three-time Cuban champion (1974, 1976, 1983) who took 2nd place in the 1988 New York Open. His $10,000 prize was confiscated by the Department of Treasury, invoking the Trading With the Enemy Act of 1917, because he was Cuban. He died in an automobile accident near Havana.

Garcia Marinez , Silvino (1944- )

Cuba’s first FIDE grandmaster (1975). He was Cuban champion in 1968, 1970, 1973, and 1979-80.

Garcia Palermo, Carlos (1953- )

Argentine Grandmaster (1985). His highest rating was 2550.

Fischer – Garcia-Palermo, Buenos Aires Simul, 1971
1.e4 e5 2.f4 d5 3.exd5 e4 4.Bb5+ c6 5.dxc6 Nxc6 6.d3 Nf6 7.dxe4 Qa5+ 8.Nc3 Bg4 9.Qd4 Be7 10.Qa4 Qb6 11.h3 O-O-O 12.Bxc6 Nxe4 13.Bd7+ Rxd7 14.Qxd7+ Bxd7 15.Nxe4 Bc6 0-1

Gashimov, Vugar (1986- )

Grandmaster from Azerbaijan. His FIDE rating is 2594.

Gausel, Einar (1963- )

Grandmaster from Norway. His FIDE rating is 2522.

Gavrikov, Viktor (1957- )

Russian Grandmaster (1984). He took 4th-5th in the 1985 Tunis Interzonal. He took 1st in the 1985 USSR Championship. He took 2nd in the 1986 USSR Championship. His FIDE rating is 2565.

Gelfand, Boris (1968- )

Grandmaster (1989) from Belorussia who moved to Israel. In 1988 he tied for first in the World Junior Championship. In 1995 he lost to Karpov in the Candidates final match. He has won two Interzonals (1990 at Manila and 1993 at Biel).

Geller, Efim (1925-1998)

One of the top 10 players in the world for over 20 years. He was a six time Candidate between 1953 and 1971. He became a Grandmaster in 1952. He played in the USSR championship 23 times, from 1949 to 1985. He won the USSR championship in 1955. 24 years later he won it again in 1979 (47th USSR Championship) at the age of 54.

Geller – Hansen, 1978
1.c4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.d4 e6 5.d5 exd5 6.cxd5 Na5 7.e4 b6 8.e5 Ng8 9.d6 f6 (9...Bb7) 10.Nd5 Rb8?? (10...Bb7) 11.Nc7+ Kf7 12.Qd5+ Kg6 13.Nh4+ Kh5 14.Qf3+ (14...Kxh4 15.Qh3 mate) 1-0

Georgadze, Tamas (1947- )

Grandmaster (1977) from Soviet Georgia.

Gofstein – Georgadze, Rostov on Don 1976
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.Nc3 g6 4.g3 Bg7 5.Bg2 O-O 6.d4 cxd4 7.Nxd4 Nc6 8.O-O d6 9.Bxc6 bxc6 10.Nxc6 Qc7 11.Qa4 Bb7 12.Nd5 Rfe8 0-1

Georgia, Russia

From 1963 to 1969 Georgia had the distinction of being the birthplace of both World Chess Champions (Tigran Petrosian and Nona Gaprindashvili).

Georgiev, Kiril (1965- )

Bulgarian Grandmaster (1985). He won the Bulgarian championship in 1984, 1986, and 1989. In 1983 he was the World Junior Champion.

Georgiev, Krum (1958- )

Bulgarian Grandmaster (1988). His FIDE rating is 2468.

K. Georgiev – Velimirovic, Athens 2001
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Bd7 6.Bc4 e6 7.Bb3 Nc6 8.Ndb5 Qb8 9.Bf4 Ne5 10.Bg5 Nxe4 11.Nxe4 Bxb5 12.f4 Ng6 13.f5 d5 14.fxg6 hxg6 15.c4 dxe4 16.cxb5 Rxh2 17.Rxh2 Qxh2 18.Be3 Qxg2 19.Rc1 Bb4+ 0-1

Georgiev, Vladimir (1975- )

Grandmaster from Macedonia. His FIDE rating is 2532.

Geshev, Georgi

First Bulgarian chess champion (1933). He also won in 1934, 1935, and 1936.

Gheorghiu, Florin (1944- )

First Romanian Grandmaster (1965). He was world junior champion in 1963. He was won the Romanian championship 9 times. He won the US Open three times in a row (1979 to 1981). He is a lecturer in languages at Bucharest University and speaks 10 languages.

Ghitescu, Theodor (1934- )

Romanian International Master (1961) and honorary Grandmaster (1986). He was Romanian champion in 1963. In the 1960 Chess Olympiad in Leipzig, he lost to Bobby Fischer in 14 moves.

Gianutio, Horatio (1566-1610)

Author of the first chess pamphlet (57 pages) by a player from the Italian school. He had it published in Turin in 1597.

Gibaud – Lazard game

Considered one of the shortest games ever played in master chess, it is perhaps a hoax. The game between Amedee Gibaud (White) and Frederic Lazard (Black), from a Paris tournament in 1924 goes as follows. 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nd2 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.h3?? Ne3! and White resigned. It may have been first published in Tidskrift For Schack magazine in January, 1931. Irving Chernev published it in the February, 1933 issue of Chess Review magazine under “Curious Chess Facts.” He claimed it was the shortest tournament game ever played and it was for the championship of Paris. The game was later published in the British magazine Chess in 1937. When Amedee Gibaud (1885- ) saw this in Chess magazine, he wrote to the editor, saying he never played this game and had never lost in 4 moves. Gibaud was French chess champion 4 times. Frederic Lazard (1883-1949) was mainly known as a composer of chess endgames. Lazard wrote that this game was from a friendly game between an amateur (White) and himself (Black), played in Paris around 1922, and that the game went 1.d4 d5 2.b3 Nf6 3.Nd2 e5 4.dxe5 Ng4 5.h3 Ne3 and White resigns.

Gibson, William (1873-1932)

Nine times Scottish chess champion. He was a lawyer by profession. He first won the Scottish championship in 1907. He won the West of Scotland Championship 14 times. He won the Glasgow championship 15 times.

Gilberg, Charles Alexander (1835-1898)

Amateur chess player and managing partner of an importing firm (West India House). He was president of the Brookyn Chess Club, the Manhattan Chess Club, and the New York Chess Association. He helped organize the 5th American Chess Congress in New York in 1880. He owned a chess library of over 1,500 volumes, the second largest in the country after that of John G. White of Cleveland, Ohio. In 1868 he wrote American Chess Nuts. In 1881, he wrote The Book of the Fifth American Chess Congress.

Gilbert, Ellen E. (1837-1900)

American correspondence player from Connecticut, also known as Mrs. J. W. Gilbert. In 1879 she participated in a U.S. vs. British correspondence match (International Postal Card Chess Tournament) with one of the strongest correspondence players in the world, George Gossip, and announced mate in 21 moves and mate in 35 moves in their two games. Ellen Gilbert (born Ellen Strong) married John W. Gilbert. From 1875 to 1879, she was known as the Queen of Chess. She died at the age of 63.

Gilman, Arkady (1913- )

One of the strongest active chess players in the world over age 90. He has a FIDE rating of 2237. He still competes in Canadian chess tournaments.

Giorgadze, Giorgi (1964- )

Grandmaster from Georgia. His FIDE rating is 2601.

Giorgadze, Tzmaz (1947- )

Grandmaster from Georgia. His FIDE rating is 2504.

Gipslis, Aivars (1937-2000)

Latvian grandmaster (1967). He won the Latvian championship 8 times (1955, 1956, 1957, 1960, 1961, 1964, 1966). He took 3rd place in the USSR chess championship in 1966/67. At the Sousse Interzonal in 1967, Bobby Fischer asked for a free day to ease his tough chess schedule due to postponements. After his demand was not met, Fischer did not show up for his game against Gipslis, and was forfeited. Gipslis did not want to win on forfeit and wanted to play Fischer at Fischer’s convenience. But Soviet officials told Gipslis he was not to play Fischer and to take the win on forfeit. This caused Fischer to withdraw from the tournament. He was playing for a local Berlin chess club when he collapsed from a stroke during the chess game. He died in a German hospital after being in a coma for several weeks. He was 63. He held the grandmaster title in FIDE (over the board) and ICCF (correspondence). He had been editor of the chess magazine Sahs/Shakmaty. He was an economist.

Klasup – Gipslis, Riga 1953
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 c5 5.dxc5 O-O 6.Nf3 Na6 7.a3 Bxc3+ 8.Qxc3 Nxc5 9.e3 a5 10.Be2 a4 11.Nd2 b6 12.O-O Ba6 13.Rd1 Rc8 14.Qb4 Nd5 0-1

Giuoco Piano

First known chess opening, according to the Gottingen manuscript (1490). The opening is 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5, and was given its name by Lolli. The opening name is derived from Italian, meaning quiet game, in contrast to gambit openings. Salvio used the term Giuoco Piano for all games that were not gambits.

Gleizerov, Evgeny (1963- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2572.

Glek, Igor (1961- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2575.

Glennie, Alick E. (1926- )

First person to beat a computer program at chess. He defeated Alan Turing’s chess program, TurboChamp, in 1952 in Manchester, England. Glennie wrote the first real compiler (autocode) for a computer in 1952. It translated symbolic statements into machine language for the Manchester Mark I computer. Autocoding later came to be a generic term for assembly programming. Glennie did computational work for the British atomic bomb.

Gligoric, Svetozar (1923- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1951). In 1938, at the age of 15, he won the Belgrade Chess Club championship. At the age of 16, he was a master. During World War II he saw action as a partisan against the Nazis. In 1959 he became Yugoslavia's Sportsman of the Year, the first chess player in Yugoslavia to be so honored. He is also considered one of Yugoslavia's best war heroes and the best soccer-playing Grandmaster. He was once rated the strongest European chess player outside the Soviet Union. He was a candidate for the World Championship three times. He was won the Yugoslav championship 12 times. His nickname is Gliga.

Gligoric – Toran, Havana 1952
1.e4 c6 2.Nc3 d5 3.Nf3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.d4 Ndf6 6.Nc5 g6 7.Bc4 Nh6 8.Ne5 e6 9.Qf3 Nf5 10.c3 Bg7 (10...Bxc5) 11.Bg5 O-O 12.Ne4 h5 13.g4 c5 (13...hxg4 14.Nxg4) 14.gxf5 1-0


Grandmasters Association, founded in 1987 by Garry Kasparov and Bessel Kok to give a voice to grandmasters that were dissatisfied with FIDE. The GMA was succeeded in 1993 by the Professional Chessplayers Association (PCA). The PCA was succeeded in 2003 by the Association of Chess Professionals (ACP).

Godena, Michele (1967- )

Grandmaster from Italy. His FIDE rating is 2562. He was Italian champion in 1993, 1994, and 1995.

Goebbels, Paul Joseph (1897-1945)

In 1933 Dr. Goebbels, German Minister of Propaganda and Enlightenment, wanted an "All-German Chess League." He created the Grossdeutsch Schachband, a new German Federation and was its honorary president. In 1933, he barred all Jewish chess players from official tournaments of the German Chess League, and barred then from chess clubs and chess playing cafes. Goebbels sought out players who were of strong National Socialist persuasion. Otto Zander, President of the new league, said all Jews would be excluded unless they proved themselves at the front line of a war. In 1939 Goebbels barred the German women’s champion, Sonja Graf, from playing chess for Germany. During World War II, Dr. Goebbels included chess in its program called Truppenbetreuung (Pastimes for soldiers). German chess masters were to visit hospitals and barracks to play exhibition tournaments and give simultaneous displays.

Goering, Carl Theodor (1841-1879)

Born in Bruheim, Germany on April 28, 1841. In 1870, he took 3rd in the first Austrian Chess Federation Congress, held in Graz. In 1871, he won at Wiesbaden, Germany (+4-0=0). In 1872, he took 3rd in the 3rd North German Chess Congress in Altona, Germany. In 1876, he tied for 1st in the 2nd Middle German Chess Congress in Leipzig, Germany. The opening gambit 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.c3 is known as the Goering (Goring) Gambit. Goering played it against Louis Paulsen in 1877 at Leipzig and was the first to introduce it into master play. Goering was a professor in Germany. He died in Eisenach, Germany on April 2, 1879.

Gofshtein, Zvulon (1953- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2531.

Goichberg, William (Bill ) (1942- )

Chess organizer and Fide Master (1983). From 1964 to 1967, he was the USCF Rating Statistician. From 1966 to 1967, he was co-editor of Chess Life magazine. He founded the New York City Chess Association in 1964, which became the Continental Chess Association (CCA) in 1968. In 1966, he directed the first USCF rated scholastic tournament. In 1969, hed was the first to have rated chess quads. In 1969, he created the National High School Championship. In 1973, he organized the first World Open in New York. He was the first to ban smoking from chess tournaments (1973). He was appointed USCF Executive Director in 2004. He was elected President of the United States Chess Federation on August 14, 2005.

Goldberg, Grigory (1908-1976)

Soviet chess master who was Botvinnik’s second from 1950 to 1953. He founded the chess facility at the Moscow Sports Academy. He took last place in two USSR chess championships (1945 and 1949).

Golden Knights

U.S. Open Postal Chess Championship that began in 1943 (then called the Victory Tournament) by Kenneth Harkness in Chess Review. The first Golden Knights Championship was won by John Staffer, at the age of 74. He won again at the age of 83.

Goldin, Alexander (1965- )

USA Grandmaster (1989) who was born in Russia. His peak FIDE rating is 2630. He won the World Open in 1998.

Goldwater, Walter Delmar (1907-1985)

Former President of the Marshall Chess Club. He was a veteran antiquarian book dealer who owned and operated the University Place Bookshop in New York.

Goletiani, Rusudan (1980 – )

Winner of the World Chess Championship for Girls Under 14 (1994), Under 16 (1995), and Under 18 (1997). She was born in Soviet Georgia and won the Soviet Junior Championship for Girls Under 12 in 1990 at the age of 9. She was awarded the International Woman’s Grandmaster (WGM) title when she was 17. She immigrated to the United States in 2000. She won the US Women’s Championship in 2004 and $12,500 when she beat WFM Tatev Abrahamyan in their playoff. She was the winner of the 18th annual Frank P. Samford chess fellowship in 2004.

Golmayo De La Torriente, Manuel (1883-1973)

First Spanish chess champion. He was Spanish champion from 1902 to 1928. He was born in Havana.

Becker – Golmayo, The Hague 1928

1,d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 d5 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.e4 Nb6 7.Ne2 e5 8.d5 O-O 9.Nbc3 f5 10.Qb3 Kh8 11.h4 h6 12.f4 c6 13.fxe5 fxe4 14.Nf4 Qe8 15.h5 gxh5 16.Nxh5 e3 17.Nxg7 Qxe5 18.Ne2 Kxg7 19.Bxe3 Re8 20.Kd2 Qxe3+ 21.Qxe3 Nc4+ 0-1

Golombek, Harry (1911-1995)

Three times British Champion (1947, 1949, and 1955). Awarded the Order of the British Empire (O.B.E.) in 1966 for his services to the game of chess, the first one so honored. He was a pilot in the Royal Air Force during World War II. He represented England in 9 Olympiads. He officiated 6 World Championship matches. He was awarded the International Master title in 1951 and International Judge in 1954. He was made an honorary Grandmaster in 1985. He was the first British player to qualify for an Interzonal.

Golombek – Hallmark, England 1959
1.c4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.e3 e5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.Nf3 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bd6 7.d4 Nd7 8.e4 Qe7 9.Bd3 exd4 10.cxd4 c5 11.e5 cxd4 12.O-O Bb4 13.Bg5 Qc5 14.Rc1 Bc3 15.Bd2 h6 16.Nxd4 Qxd4 17.Bxc3 Qb6 18.e6 Nf6 19.Rb1 Qc7 20.Bb5+ Kf8 21.e7 1-0

Golod, Vitali (1971- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating in 2582.

Golubev, Mikhail (1970- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2517.

Gormally, Daniel (1976- )

Grandmaster from England. His FIDE rating is 2557.

Gossip, George Hatfeild Dingley (1841-1907)

Born in New York on December 6, 1841. He was winner of the Correspondence Tournament of the Chess Players Chronicle in 1873-1874. In 1874, he published The Chess-Players’ Manual, a 900 page opening book. In 1885, he took 2nd place in the 1st Australian championship. In 1887, he took 3rd place in the 2nd Australian championship. In 1889, he took last place in the 5th British Chess Federation championship. In 1889, he took last place in the 6th German Chess Federation championship. In 1890, he took last place in the 6th British Chess Federation Congress. In 1892, he took last place in the 7th British Chess Federation Congress. In October 1893, he took last place in New York. He died on May 11, 1907 in Liphook, England.

Gottingen Manuscript

One of the earliest known works entirely devoted to modern chess. The author is not named, but he is addressed as Dominatio vestra, Magfifice domine, Serenissime Princeps. It may have been written by Luis Lucena around 1500. It is a Latin text of 33 pages, now at the University of Gottingen. It describes 12 openings and 30 chess problems. It derives its name from a note in the inner cover which records its presentation to the University of Gottingen.

Gottschall, Hermann von (1862-1933)

German chess author and player of International Master strength. He took 2nd at Nuremberg in 1888.

Von Gottschall – Noa, Hamburg 1885
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bd3 Nc6 5.Nf3 Bb4 6.Bg5 h6 7.Bxf6 Qxf6 8.O-O Bxc3 9.bxc3 O-O 10.Nd2 dxe4 11.Nxe4 Qd8 12.f4 Ne7 13.Qh5 Qd5 14.Nf6+ gxf6 15.Qxh6 Nf5 16.Bxf5 1-0

Gracia, Delfin Burdio (1934-2005)

Spanish player. President of the International Braille Chess Association (IBCA) from 1992 to 2005. He became an International Arbiter in 1979.

Graf Nenashev, Alexander (1962- )

German Grandmaster. His peak FIDE rating is 2661 and current FIDE rating is 2605.

Graf Stevenson, Sonja (1914-1965)

Winner of four U.S. Women's Opens and two Closed Championships (1957 – tied with Gresser, 1964). She was woman champion of her native Germany until the outbreak of World War II. At the world women’s championship tournament in Buenos Aires in 1939, she was prevented from playing for Germany by a Nazi edict. She went on to play at large under the banner of "Liberty." She took 2nd place with a 16-3 score, behind Menchik (who had an 18-1 score). In the 1930s she was considered the second best woman chess player in the world, after Vera Menchik. Both Vera Menchik and Sonja Graf married a chess player named Stevenson. She learned the game at age four and was a pupil of Dr. Siegbert Tarrasch.

Granda-Zuniga, Julio Ernesto (1967- )

Grandmaster (1986) from Peru. In 1981, at the age of 13, he won the world Junior Chess Championship. In 1988, he was Latin America’s top chess player. In 1992 he won the New York Open. He retired from chess in 1998 to become a farmer. He announced he was retiring because “chess is an effrontery to the eyes of God. …One should live in accordance with divine law, which orders us to till the earth.” He returned to chess in 2002. He has won the championship of Peru several times. He learned chess at the age of 5 from his father, a schoolteacher.


First used in connection with chess as a player of highest class in 1838. The title of grandmaster was first used in 1907 at the Ostend tournament. In 1914, Nicholas II, the Czar of Russia, conferred the title 'Grandmaster of Chess' on Emanuel Lasker, Alekhine, Capablanca, Tarrasch, and Marshall after they took the top 5 places in the St. Petersburg tournament. These are the five original Grandmasters. In 1949 FIDE recognized the term Grand Master for 17 players: Fine, Reshevsky, Bronstein, Boleslavsky, Flohr, Keres, Kotov, Lilienthal, Smyslov, Botvinnik, Levenfish, Ragozin, Najdorf, Stahlberg, Szabo, Maroczy, and Euwe. In 1950 FIDE awarded 27 players the first official Grandmaster title. These players were: Bernstein, Boleslavsky, Bondarevsky, Botvinnik, Bronstein, Duras, Euwe, Fine, Flohr, Gruenfeld, Keres, Kostic, Kotov, Levenfish, Lilienthal, Maroczy, Mieses, Najdorf, Ragozin, Reshevsky, Rubinstein, Saemisch, Smyslov, Stahlberg, Szabo, Tartakower, and Vidmar. In the 1960s the United States had more Grandmasters than International Masters. Grandmaster titles awarded in 2004 include Rodrigo Vasquez, Zvonko Stanojoski, Alexey Kim, Alexander Potapov, Evgeny Shaposhnikov, and Robert Markus. The youngest GMs have been Sergey Karjakin (12 years, 7 months), Magnus Carlsen (13 years, 3 months), Bu Xiangzhi (13 years, 10 months), Teimour Radjabov and Ruslan Ponomariov (14 years old), Etienne Bacrot (14 years, 2 months), Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and Peter Leko (14 years, 4 months), Yuri Kuzubov (14 years, 7 months), Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son (14 years 10 months), Hikaru Nakamura (15 years, 2 months), Koneru Humpy and Judit Polgar (15 years, 4 months), and Bobby Fischer (15 years, 6 months).

Grau, Roberto (1900-1944)

Argentine chess champion in 1926, 1927, 1928, 1934, 1935, 1936, and 1939. He was South American Champion in 1921-22 and 1928.

Greco, Gioacchino (Joachino) (1600-1634)

Italian chess player and the best known of the wandering chessmen in the early 17th century. Greco learned chess from earlier books and kept a notebook of tactics, and short and clever games. He made a living selling chess manuscripts of openings and traps to wealthy patrons (also Cardinals and Archbishops), first in Italy (around 1619), then to France, then to England, then back to France. In 1622 he was robbed of all his money while on his way to London. In 1624 he lived in Paris and rearranged his chess manuscripts, eliminating the longer and less attractive games and adding new brilliancies. From 1624 to 1626 he sold his manuscripts to French patrons. In late 1624, he went to Madrid, Spain and defeated all other chess players at the court of King Philip IV. He was taken to the West Indies by a Spanish nobleman where he died, leaving his fortune to the Jesuits. He was born in Celico, Calabria and became known as the Calabrese (Il Calabrese) in later life. After his death, a game collection was published in 1656 by Henry Herrington containing over 150 games with his own annotations. This book, The Royall Game of Chess-Play, Sometimes The Recreation of the late King, with many of the Nobility. Illustrated with almost an hundred Gambetts. Being the study of Biochimo the famous Italian. This was the most important English-language chess book up to its day

Greenblatt, Richard D. (1945- )

Computer programmer. In late 1966, as an MIT undergraduate, he began to develop a computer chess program of his own. He had been challenged by Hubert Dreyfus, who criticized the usefulness of Artificial Intelligence and was an anti-computer opponent, that computers would not be able to play chess or be good enough to beat a ten-year-old. An early version was up and running by the end of 1966. MIT was using a computer time-sharing grand called Project MAC (Multiple Access Computing). Greenblatt’s program ran on a PDP 6. He called his creation MAC HACK 6 and programmed it in assembly language. His program was able to beat Greenblatt’s critic, Hubert Dreyfus, which checkmated him in the middle of the board. In 1967, It was the first computer chess program to play in chess tournaments with human players. Greenblatt was offered an MIT degree if he would write a thesis about his chess program, but he never got around to writing a thesis. Greenblatt was the main designer of the MIT Lisp machine. In 1980, Greenblatt founded LMI (Lisp Machines, Inc) to market Lisp machines.

Greenfeld, Alon (1964- )

Israeli Grandmaster (1989), born in New York. His FIDE rating is 2549.

Korchnoi – Greenfeld, Biel 1986
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 e6 5.Nb5 d5 6.cxd5 a6 7.N5c3 exd5 8.Be3 Nc6 9.Bd4 Nxd4 10.Qxd4 Qc7 11.e3 Bc5 12.Qa4+ b5 13.Bxb5+ axb5 14.Qxa8 O-O 15.b4 Bxb4 16.O-O Ng4 17.g3 Bb7 18.Nxb5 Qc6 19.Qa4 d4 20.f3 Qh6 21.Qc2 d3 22.Qg2 Nxe3 0-1


Probably the first chess tournament ever held in Greenland, the world’s largest island, occurred in 1965 at Thule Air Base (won by Tim Moore). The first international chess tournament was held in 2003.

Grefe, John (1947- )

International Master (1975) from Berkeley who tied for first (with Kavalek) in the 1973 U.S. Chess Championship in El Paso, Texas. He attributed his success by his complete devotion to the Guru Maharaj-Ji, a 15 year-old prophet from India. In 1974 he came equal second at Lone Pine. He tied for first at the 1980 American Open. He won the California State Championship in 1980, 1981, 1982, and 1995.

Grefe – Burger, San Francisco 1969
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d5 3.exd5 e4 4.Qe2 Nf6 5.Nc3 Be7 6.Nxe4 O-O 7.Nxf6+ Bxf6 8.Qd1 Re8+ 9.Be2 Qe7 10.d4 Bf5 11.a3 Be4 12.O-O Bxd5 13.Be3 Nc6 14.c3 h6 15.h3 Na5 16.Nd2 Bg5 17.Bxg5 Qxe2 18.Be3 Rxe3! (19.fxe3 Qxg2 mate) 0-1

Gresser, Gisela (1906-2000)

Winner of the U.S. Women's Championship 9 times (1944, 1948, 1955, 1957, 1962, 1965, 1966, 1967, and 1969). She won the 1969 U.S. Women's Championship at the age of 63. Second place went to 55 year-old Mona Karff (6 times former Champion). She was the first woman in the U.S. to achieve a master's rating. She learned how to play chess after she borrowed a chess book while on a cruise from France to New York in 1937. She became interested in chess tournaments as a spectator at the 1938 U.S. Women’s Championship at the Rockefeller Center in New York. She played in her first U.S. Women’s Championship in 1940. She was born Gisela Kahn. She was awarded the International Woman Master title in 1950.

Rather – Gresser, New York 1946
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 d5 5.exd5 Nxd5 6.Nxd5 Qxd5 7.d4 Be7 8.Bxf4 Qe4+ 9.Be2 Qxf4 10.O-O O-O 0-1

Gretarsson, Helgi Ass (1977- )

Icelandic grandmaster (1994) who won the 1994 World Under-20 Junior Chess Championship, held in Brazil. He won the Icelandic championship in 1999.

Griffith, Richard Clewin ( 1872-1955)

British chess champion in 1912. He was the co-author (along with J. H. White) of the early editions of Modern Chess Openings.

Grigoriev, Nikolai (1895-1938)

Soviet endgame analyst. In 1936 the French magazine, La Strategie, promoted an end-game competition. Of the 12 awards he shared 1st and 2nd prizes, won 3rd, 4th and 5th prizes; shared 1st and 2nd honorable mentions, and was awarded 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th honorable mentions. He died after an operation to remove his appendix.

Grivas, Efstratios (1966- )

Grandmaster from Greece. His FIDE rating is 2515.

Grimshaw, Walter

19th century chess problem composer. In 1854, he won the first chess problem competition, held in London.

Grischuk, Alexander (1983- )

Russian Grandmaster from Moscow. He reached the semifinals of the 2000 FIDE world championship at the age of 16. In 2002, he took 2nd at the Corus Chess Tournament. In 2004, he was 2nd in the 2004 Russian Championships, behind Kasparov. His FIDE rating is 2716.

Arizmendi – Grischuk, Reykjavik 2000
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.h4 g4 5.Ne5 Nf6 6.Bc4 d5 7.exd5 Bd6 8.d4 Nh5 9.Nc3 O-O 10.Nxg4 Ng3 11.Rh2 Qe7+ 12.Kd2 Re8 0-1

Grob, Henri (1904-1974)

Swiss International Master (1950). He was Swiss champion in 1939 and 1951. He pioneered eccentric chess openings, such as 1.g4, sometimes knows as Grob’s Attack. He was an artist and painter.

Grob – W. Fischer, Postal 1966
1.g4 d5 2.Bg2 e5 3.c4 c6 4.cxd5 cxd5 5.Qb3 Ne7 6.Nc3 e4 7.d3 exd3 8.Bf4 a6 9.Rd1 dxe2 10.Ngxe2 Nbc6 11.Bxd5 Nxd5 12.Nxd5 Na5 13.Qe3+ Be6 14.Nc7+ Qxc7 15.Bxc7 1-0

Groningen 1946

First international chess tournament after World War II. Botvinnik won, receiving 1,500 Dutch guilders and a silver cigarette box from the Queen. A tablecloth was given to the best non-prizewinner. A picture of the Martini Tower in Groningen in a silver frame was given to the last place finisher. 12,000 spectators paid for admission to the event. 21 invited players showed up but only 20 players were allowed to play. The tournament did not want to turn away any foreign player, so it was between Prins and Euwe to drop out. One of the Russian players promised to invite Prins to an international tournament if he dropped out. He agreed, but the promise was never met.

Grossman, Nat (1910- )

New York State Champion in 1932.

Groszpeter, Attila (1960- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1986). He took 2nd in the 1984 Hungarian championship. His FIDE rating is 2524.

Groszpeter – Burger, New York 1988
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Ba6 5.Nbd2 Bb7 6.Bg2 d5 7.O-O Be7 8.cxd5 exd5 9.Qc2 O-O 10.Ne5 c5 11.dxc5 bxc5 12.Ndc4 Nc6 13.Nxc6 Bxc6 14.Bg5 Nd7 15.Bxe7 Qxe7 16.Na5 Bb5 17.Bxd5 Rae8 18.Rfe1 Bxe2 19.Bc6 1-0

Gruenfeld, Ernst (1893-1962)

Austrian chess player and Grandmaster (1950). He was one of the top 10 players in the world in the 1920s. He lost a leg in early childhood. He was supposed to have one of the best memories for chess openings than any other player. He introduced the Gruenfeld Defense in 1922. He was German champion in 1923.

Grunfeld – Nagy, Debreczen 1924
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 d5 4.cxd5 Qxd5 5.Nf3 Bg7 6.Bg2 O-O 7.Nc3 Qh5 8.h3 Nc6 9.Ng5 Rd8 10.Bf3 Rxd4 11.Qb3 1-0

Gruenfeld, Yehuda (1956- )

Israeli grandmaster (1980), born in Poland. In 1982 he was the champion of Israel. He is a deaf mute.

Grumette, Lina (1908-1988)

Popular West Coast chess organizer who ran The Chess Set chess club in her Hollywood home. She competed in the US Women’s championship of the 1940s and was one of the strongest females in the United States. It may have been her influence that Bobby Fischer continued his world championship match in Iceland in 1972.

Grundy, James (1855-1919)

Responsible for the most infamous scandal in U.S. championship history. Grundy needed a win in the last round to tie for first place at the 5th American Chess Congress in New York in 1880. Grundy bribed his opponent, Preston Ware, $20 during the game to let Ware's advantage slip into a draw so that Grundy could make sure of second place. When Ware agreed and took the money, Grundy tricked him and played for a win which he did. Grundy tied for 1st place in the 5th American Chess Congress with George Mackenzie, but was subsequently disqualified.


In 1939, George Koltanowski was giving chess exhibitions in Guatemala when World War II broke out. He did not return to Belgium and later settled in the United States. In 1986 Guatemala was represented by four brothers named Juarez at the chess Olympiad in Dubai. Their women's team had a 10-year old, Heidi Cueller, as a member of their team. She was the youngest person to play in an Olympiad.

Gufeld, Eduard (1936-2002)

Ukrainian Grandmaster (1967), chess coach and trainer, who played in 8 USSR championships from 1959 to 1972. He moved to Hollywood in 1995 and opened up a chess club in 1998. He won the American Open in 1999. He guided Maya Chiburdanidze to the women’s world championship. He authored over 80 books on chess. In 1960 he won the championship of the USSR Armed Forces.

Gufeld – Klovans, Moscow 1956
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O d6 6.c3 Bd7 7.Re1 Be7 8.a3 O-O 9.h3 Qc8 10.d4 exd4 11.cxd4 d5 12.Nc3 dxe4 13.d5 Rd8 14.dxc6 Bxh3 15.cxb7 Qg4 16.Nh4 Qxh4 17.bxa8=Q Rxa8 18.g3 1-0

Guimard, Carlos (1913- )

Argentinian grandmaster (1960). He was chess champion of Argentina in 1936, 1937, and 1941, . He played in the 1955 Goteborg Interzonal and placed 12th-13th (with Najdorf) out of 21. He was still playing chess in his 80s.

Guliev, Sarhan (1968- )

Grandmaster from Azerbaijan. His FIDE rating is 2481.

Gulko, Boris (1947- )

Grandmaster (1976) and former Soviet champion (1977) who tried to emigrate from the Soviet Union for over 7 years and was finally allowed to do so in 1986. We went on a 40 day hunger strike. His wife is one of the strongest women chessplayers in the world, Anna Akhsumarova. She won the Soviet women's championship twice and was cheated out of a third victory in 1982 when the result of a game she won was reversed. Boris refused to sign a form letter denouncing the defection of Victor Korchnoi in 1979. He was arrested for demonstrating in front of the Moscow Interzonal in 1982 and beaten up by KGB agents. He was denied entrance to the tournament even as a spectator. In 1987 he won the World Open. In 1991 Gulko had to be smuggled into Yugoslavia to act as a second to Irina Levitina in the 1991 Women's Interzonal. He was unable to get a passport from the tournament delegation so they smuggled him in from Hungary. He tied for first with Judit Polgar in the 1998 US Open. He is the only person to win the USSR and US championship. He won the U.S. Championship in 1994 and 1999. He was born in Germany.

Colin – Gulko, St. Martin 1992
1.c4 e5 2.e4 Bc5 3.Nc3 d6 4.g3 Nc6 5.Bg2 f5 6.d3 Nf6 7.Nh3 O-O 8.O-O h6 9.Qd2 (9.Na4) 9...fxe4 10.Nxe4 Nxe4 11.dxe4 Be6 12.Kh1 Qd7 13.Ng1 Bxc4 (and 14...Rxf2) 0-1

Friedmann – Gulko, Philadelphia 1993
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.Bd2 Ne7 6.a3 Bxc3 7.Bxc3 b6 8.b4 Qc7 9.Nf3 cxb4 10.Bxb4 a5 11.Bd2 O-O 12.Bd3 Ba6 13.Bxh7+ Kxh7 14.Ng5+ Kg8 15.Qh5 Qxc2 16.g4 Qd3 0-1

Gumpel, Charles Godfrey (1835-1921)

Inventor of the chess automation Mephisto, in 1876, but first displayed in 1878. Gumpel was a manufacturer of artificial limbs.

Gunsberg, Isidor Arthur (1854-1930)

In 1890-1891, Gunsberg played Steinitz for the world’s championship and lost after 4 wins, 9 draws, and 6 losses. Gunsberg began his chess career as the player inside the chess automaton Mephisto. He started playing chess at the Café de la Regence at the age of 12. He took 3rd place at the 6th American Chess Congress. In 1916, he sued the Evening News (Alfred William Foster) for libel when they said that his chess column in the London Daily Telegraph contained blunders and unsound chess problems. He won the suit (and 250 pounds in dmages) after the British High Court accepted a submission that in chess matters, eight oversights did not make a blunder.

Bird – Gunsberg, Hastings 1897
1.f4 e5 2.fxe5 d6 3.exd6 Bxd6 4.Nf3 g5 5.c3 g4 6.Nd4 Nc6 7.Qa4 Qh4+ 8.Kd1 g3 9.b3 Qxh2 0-1

Gunsberg – Unknown, England 1900
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.h4 g4 5.Ng5 h6 6.Nxf7 Kxf7 7.d4 d5 8.Bxf4 Nf6 9.Nc3 Bb4 10.Be5 Nxe4 11.Bd3 Nxc3 12.O-O+ Kg8 13.Qe1 Ne4 14.Qxe4 dxe4 15.Bc4+ Kh7 16.Rf7+ Kg6 17.Rg7+ Kh5 18.Bf7+ Kxh4 19.Kh2 (threatening 20.g3 or 20.Bg3 and mate) 1-0

Gurevich, Dmitry (1956- )

Grandmaster (1983) who was born in Moscow and immigrated to the United States in 1980. He won the US Open in 1988 and 1994. In 2005, he won the National Open.

Gurevich, Ilya (1972- )

American Grandmaster. U.S. National Elementary Champion (1983), World Under-14 Champion (1985), U.S. Junior Champion (1990), and World Junior Champion (1990). He became a stock exchange options trader. He became a chess master at age 12 years, 3 months in 1984.

Gurevich, Mikhail (1959- )

Soviet grandmaster (1986). In 1985 he won the Soviet championship. In 1991 he immigrated to Belgium.

M. Gurevich – Geller, Moscow 1987
1.c4 e6 2.Nc3 d5 3.d4 Be7 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Bf4 c6 6.Qc2 g6 7.e3 Bf5 8.Qd2 Nf6 9.f3 h5 10.Bd3 Bxd3 11.Qxd3 Nbd7 12.Nge2 O-O 13.e4 dxe4 14.fxe4 Nc5 15.Qf3 Ne6 16.O-O-O Nxf4 17.Nxf4 Nh7 18.Kb1 Bb4 19.Nce2 Qe7 20.h4 Rae8 21.e5 Qd7 22.Ka1 Ba5 23.Qb3 Bb6 24.Nxg6 1-0

Gurgenidze, Bukhuti (1933- )

Soviet Grandmaster (1970) from Soviet Georgia. He was a trainer to several women grandmasters in the Soviet Union. He played in eight USSR chess championships. He may be the lowest rated Grandmaster, with a FIDE rating of 2225. He is a geologist by profession.

Gurgenidze – Dzindzichashvili, Tbilisi 1966
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Bg5 e6 7.Be2 Be7 8.Nb3 a6 9.Qd2 b5 10.a3 Bb7 11.Rd1 Na5 12.Nxa5 Qxa5 13.e5 b4 14.axb4 Qxe5 15.f4 Qf5 16.g4 Ne4 17.gxf5 Nxd2 18.Kxd2 Bxg5 19.fxg5 Bxh1 20.Rxh1 h6 21.g6 1-0

Guseinov, Aidyn

Grandmaster from Azerbaijan. His FIDE rating is 2489.

Guseinov, Gadir (1986- )

Grandmaster from Azerbaijan. His FIDE rating is 2585.

Gustafsson, Jan (1979- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2614.

Gutman, Lev (1945- )

Latvian-born Grandmaster (1986). He was Latvian champion in 1972. He moved to Israel, then to Germany. His FIDE rating is 2465.

Igor Ivanov – Gutman, Riga 1975
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Bf4 Bg7 5.e3 O-O 6.Be5 c6 7.Nf3 Bg4 8.Qb3 Nbd7 9.Bg3 dxc4 10.Qxb7 Bxf3 11.gxf3 c5 12.d5 Ne8 13.Bxc4 Nd6 14.Qa6 Rb8 15.Bb3 Rb4 16.O-O c4 17.Bxd6 exd6 18.Qxd6 Rb6 0-1

Gutmayer, Franz (1857-1937)

German chess player who wrote a chess book (Turnierpraxis, published in Leipzig) and a series of articles in 1921 on how to become a chess master, but he never became one himself. He never won a Hauptturnier first prize (but did take 2nd place ½ point behind the winner), which was required in Germany for the title of chess master. Richard Reti read the articles, became a master, and wrote Modern Ideas in Chess in 1922, showing the proper way to play chess and become a master. However, Gutmayer’s historical chess rating was over 2400 in 1885, ranking him in the top 25 players in the world. Gutmayer wrote over 20 popular chess books between 1898 and 1928.

Gyimesi, Zoltan (1977- )

Grandmaster from Hungary. His FIDE rating is 2628.

Hahn, Anna (1976- )

Women’s International Master (1995) and Women’s US Champion for 2003. She won a playoff between Irina Krush and Jennifer Shahade. She won the Latvian’s Women’s Championship in 1992. She tied for 2nd place in the World Girls’ Championship in 1993. She was born in Latvia and her hobbies include kick boxing.

Haifa, Israel

Site of the 22nd Chess Olympiad, held October 24 through November 11, 1976. Libya protested and had an Olympiad of their own at the same time. The USSR did not play and the United States team won (R. Byrne, Kavalek, Evans, Tarjan, Lombardy, Commons). This was the first time since 1937 that the USA team won in the chess Olympiad. There were 48 teams (there were 73 teams two years before at Nice, France). This was the first time an Olympiad was conducted as a Swiss system. Also, there were no medals for board prizes. Instead, there was a miscellany of prizes, only one per board. For example, the best sixth board went to Kim Commons who received a copy of Fischer's My 60 Memorable Games. USA took first, followed by Holland, then England. The Women’s Olympiad was won by Israel.


In the movie, 2001: A Space Odyssey, HAL the computer plays Frank Poole a game of chess. HAL says, “I’m sorry, Frank. I think you missed it. Queen to Bishop three, Bishop takes Queen. Knight takes Bishop, mate.” But, HAL has the Black pieces and should have said Queen to Bishop six. And White could have avoided mate after several other moves. The game in the screenplay is a real one played in Hamburg in 1910.

Roesch – Willi Schlage, Hamburg 1910, Ruy Lopez [C77]
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.Qe2 b5 6.Bb3 Be7 7.c3 O-O 8.O-O d5 9.exd5 Nxd5 10.Nxe5 Nf4 11.Qe4 Nxe5 12.Qxa8 [better may be 12.d4 Bb7 13.Qxb7 (or 13.Qxf4 Nd3 14.Qf5 Rxc1 15.Rxc1 and White is a pawn up) 13...Ne2+ 14.Kh1 Nxc1 15.Rxc1 Nd3 16.Rc2 and White is up a pawn] 12...Qd3 [threatening 13...Ne2+ 14.Kh1 Ng3+ 15.hxg3 Qxf1+ 16.Kh2 Ng4 17.Kh1 Qh1 mate] 13.Bd1?? [White must play 13.Re1 to survive] 13...Bh3! 14.Qxa6 Bxg2 [threatening 15...Qxf1 mate] 15.Re1 Qf3! Black resigns. HAL says if 16.Bxf3 Nxf3 mate, but White can delay the mate for several moves. White can play 16.h3 or 16.h4 and after 16...Nh3+ 17.Kh2 Ng4 mate. He can further avoid mate one more move with 16.Qe6 or 16.Qh6. After 16.Qh6 gxh6 17.h3 Nxh3+ 18.Kh2 Ne4 mate. Halkias, Stelios (1980- )

Grandmaster from Greece. His FIDE rating is 2548.

Hall of Fame, US

U.S. Chess Federation selection of American chess greats. Members include Lev Alburt, Hans Berliner, Pal Benko, Arthur Bisguier, Walter Browne, Donald Byrne, Robert Byrne, Jack Collins, Arnold Denker, Ed Edmondson, Arpad Elo, Larry Evans, Reuben Fine, Robert Fischer, Benjamin Franklin, Greta Gresser, Kenneth Harkness, Hermann Helms, I.A. Horowitz, Isaac Kashdan, Lubomir Kavalek, George Koltanowski, Sam Loyd, George Mackenzie, Frank Marshall, Edmar Mednis, Paul Morphy, Victor Palciauskas, Harry Pillsbury, Fred Reinfeld, Samuel Reshevsky, William Steinitz, and Milan Vukcevich. The US Hall of Fame is located in Miami, Florida.

Hall of Fame, World

World Chess Hall of Fame inductees include Mikhail Botvinnik, Jose Capablanca, Bobby Fischer, Emanuel Lasker, Paul Morphy, Tigran Petrosian, Vasily Smyslov, Boris Spassky, William Steinitz, and Mikhail Tal.

Hamdouchi, Hichem (1972- )

Grandmaster from Morocco. He was Africa’s 2nd grandmaster, after Bouaziz. His FIDE rating is 2567.

Hamilton-Russell Cup

Gold Cup or trophy to the top Men’s Olympiad team. It is the Davis Cup of chess. It was donated by Frederick G. Hamilton-Russell (1867-1941) in 1927 for the winner of the International Team tournament. He was President of the British Chess Federation.

Hanauer, Milton Loeb (1909-1988)

Vice President of the Marshall Chess Club where he had been a member for over 60 years. He was one of the top 25 chess players in America in the early 1950s. He authored Chess Made Easy. He graduated from college at 17 and was the youngest person to win the New York State Chess Championship (1926). He was the Marshall Chess Club Champion in 1950-51.

Handbuch des Schachspiels (Handbook of Chess)

Began by von Bilguer in 1840 and completed by von der Lasa in 1843, it was the first encyclopedic treatment of the chess openings on modern lines.

Handoko, Edhi (1960- )

Grandmaster from Indonesia. His FIDE rating is 2407.

Hanham, James Moore (1840-1923)

Born in Woodville, Mississippi on January 4, 1840. He fought on the side of the North during the Civil War and was promoted to major in the U.S. Army. He saw action at Fort Pickens and Baton Rouge. After the Civil War, he moved to Manhattan. In 1885, he took 2nd place at the 7th Manhattan Chess Club championship. In 1885, he took 2nd in the 8th Manhattan Chess Club championship. In 1888, he tied for 2nd-3rd in the 1st United States Chess Association tournament in Cincinnati, won by Showalter. In 1891, he won the New York State Chess Association championship. He died on December 30, 1923 in Manhattan. At his death at age 84, he was the oldest chessplayer of master rank in the United States.

Hansen, Curt (1964- )

Grandmaster (1985) and the strongest Danish player in the 1990s. He won the European Junior Championship in 1982 and the junior World Championship in 1984. He won the Nordic championship in 1983. He won the Danish championship in 1932, 1984, and 1985.

Hansen – Wicker, Esbjerg 1981
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nd2 c5 4.Ngf3 Nf6 5.exd5 Nxd5 6.c4 Nf6 7.dxc5 Bxc5 8.Be2 Nc6 9.O-O Qc7 10.a3 a5 11.b3 O-O 12.Bb2 e5 13.Qc2 Re8 14.Ne4 Nxe4 15.Qxe4 Bd4 16.Nxd4 1-0

Hansen, Lars Bo (1968- )

Grandmaster from Denmark. His FIDE rating is 2567.

Hansen, Sune Berg (1971- )

Grandmaster from Denmakr. His FIDE rating is 2568.

Hanstein, Wilhelm (1811-1850)

German chess player who was one of the Berlin Pleiades. He helped found Berliner Schachzeitung, later to become Deutsche Schachzeitung. He was a civil servant.

Hanstein – Jaenisch, Berlin 1842
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.Bc4 g4 5.O-O gxf3 6.Qxf3 Bh6 7.d4 d5 8.exd5 Qf6 9.c3 Ne7 10.Nd2 Bf5 11.d6 Nec6 12.dxc7 Nd7 13.Re1+ Kf8 14.b3 Rc8 15.Ne4 Bxe4 16.Rxe4 Re8 17.Rxe8+ Kxe8 18.c8=Q+ 1-0

Har-Zvi, Ronen (1976- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2515.

Harikrishna, Pentala (1986- )

In 1996, he was the World Under-10 chess champion. In 2004, he was the World Junior Chess Champion. His Internet Chess Club (ICC) handle is TomCruise. He became a Grandmaster in 2001, at the age of 15. He became India’s youngest Grandmaster (Anand was 18 when he became a GM).

Harkness, Kenneth (1898-1972)

First business manager of the US Chess Federation. He was a radio engineer. He helped standardize chess rules, the Swiss system, and the rating system. He was inducted in the US Chess Hall of Fame in 1997. He was born in Scotland. He died of a heart attack on a train in Yugoslavia, on his way to a FIDE meeting in Skopje, Yugoslavia. He was 74.

Harmonist, Max (1864-1907)

German chess master who earned his living as a ballet dancer for the Royal Ballet.

Harmonist – NN, Berlin 1897
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.f4 d5 4.fxe5 Nxe4 5.Nf3 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Be7 7.d4 Be6 8.Bd3 O-O 9.h4 f6 10.Ng5 fxg5 11.Bxh7+ Kxh7 12.hxg5+ Kg8 13.Qh5 Rf5 14.g4 Rxg5 15.Bxg5 Bxg4 16.Qxg4 Qd7 17.e6 Qd6 18.Qh3 1-0

Harrwitz, Daniel (1823-1884)

German master and world’s best active player in the mid 1850s. He played matches against Staunton, Anderssen, Lowenthal, and lost to Morphy. He became a professional chess player at the Cafe de la Regence in Paris. In 1852, his match with Lowenthal was the first chess match that introduced a time limit. The time limit was 20 minutes per move. In 1853-1854 he edited the British Chess Review. In 1862 he wrote Lehbuch des Schachspiels. He retired in the Austrian Alps (Tyrol), living off his inheritance.

Gocher – Harrwitz, France 1868
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.h4 g4 5.Ne5 Nf6 6.Nxg4 Nxe4 7.d3 Ng3 8.Bxf4 Qe7+ 9.Kf2 Nxh1+ 10.Kg1 Bg7 11.Nc3 h5 12.Nd5 hxg4 13.Nxe7 Bd4+ 14.Kxh1 Rxh4+ 15.Bh2 g3 (and 16...Rxh2 mate) 0-1

Hartston, William (1947- )

British International Master (1973) who won the British men's chess championship while his wife, Jana Malypetrova, won the British women's championship in 1974. He won or tied in the British championship in 1973, 1974, 1975, and 1980. At Hastings 1972-3, he turned down a draw offer against Uhlmann and lost the game. If he had accepted the draw, he would have become England’s first grandmaster. He has written many chess books.

Hartston – Basman, England 1968
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 Nd7 4.Bc4 c6 5.O-O h6 6.dxe5 dxe5 7.Bxf7+ Kxf7 8.Nxe5+ Kf6 9.Qd4 Ke6 10.Ng6 Rh7 11.Qc4+ Kf6 12.Nf4 g5? (12...Qe8) 13.Qxg8 gxf4 14.Qxh7 Bg7 15.Bxf4 Nf8 16.Be5+ Kxe5 17.Qxg7+ Qf6 18.f4+ Ke6 19.f5+ (19...Ke5 20.Qg3+ Kxe4 21.Nc3+ Kd4 22.Qf4+ Kc5 23.Ne4+ and 24.Nxf6) 1-0

Harvard Cup

The Harvard Cup, held at Harvard University in Boston, Massachusetts, was a tournament of humans vs. computers. The 1st Harvard Cup was held in 1989, won by Boris Gulko and Michael Rohde. The four humans (Gulko, Rohde, Dlugy, and Alburt) all scored better than the computers (Deep Thought, Hitech, Mephisto, and Chiptest). The 2nd Harvard Cup was held in 1991 and won by Maxim Dlugy. Again, the humans all scored better than the computers. The 3rd Harvard Cup, held in 1992, was won by Michael Rohde. The 4th Harvard Cup, held in 1993, was won by Joel Benjamin. The 5th Harvard Cup, held in 1994, was won by Joel Benjamin. The 6th Harvard Cup, held in 1995, was won by Joel Benjamin.


Town in Sussex, England that is home to the oldest and longest running tournament in the world. The first tournament was in June 1882. The most famous was held in 1895 (won by Pillsbury). The current series started in 1920. The Hastings 1895 tournament is considered by some as the greatest chess tournament ever held. The top 12 players in the world participated at Hastings in 1895. The 1945/46 Hastings tournament was eventful because a land mine washed up near the playing site.

Havana 1966

The 17th Chess Olympiad was held in Havana. Premier Castro was on the Organizing Committee and showed up for many of the rounds. He played games against Petrosian and Fischer among others. Each team had a driver and a car. There were 52 countries out of the 68 FIDE members that participated. Cuba paid for the air expenses of every team. The American chess team was the first American cultural team to visit Cuba since Castro took over in 1958. USSR took first place followed by the USA. There was a tie between Hungary and Yugoslavia. The referees decided to give the bronze medal to Hungary, but their tie-break calculations were faulty. Yugoslavia should have been awarded the bronze medal and this has never been corrected. At the end of the Olympiad, a simultaneous exhibition of 6,480 boards was given..

Hayes, Rea Bruce (1915-2001)

Winner of the first U.S. Senior Open (open to players age 50 and older), held in 1981 in Sun City, Arizona.. In 1998, at the age of 83, he was the oldest player to play in the event. He was born in Canada, then later moved to South Carolina. He won the South Carolina championship in 1953 and 1954. He later moved to Cincinnati, Ohio. He won the Ohio championship in 1963 and the Tennessee championship in 1992, at the age of 76.

Hazeltine, Miron James (1824-1907)

Newspaper chess columnist (New York Clipper) for more than 50 years (from 1856 to 1907) without missing a single issue until shortly before his death. He began his first chess column in the New York Saturday Courier on February 3, 1855. This was probably the first chess column in the United States. He was the first person to omit the "to" from recorded moves – making "P to K4" into "P-K4." He was a principal of a classical private school and a justice of the peace and notary public for the state of New Hampshire. At the time of his death, he had one of the largest collection of chess books in the country (over 600 volumes).

HB Global Chess Challenge

Tournament held in May, 2005 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It was the richest open tournament in the history of chess, with $500,000 prize fund. 1st place was $50,000, won by Grandmaster Zviad Izonia of Soviet Georgia, with the score of 7.5 out of 9. There were 1,514 players in the tournament.

Hebden, Mark (1958- )

Grandmaster from England. His FIDE rating is 2510.

Hecht, Hans-Joachim (1939- )

German grandmaster (1973). He was West German chess champion in 1970 and 1973. He was on the German team that won the gold medal in the 1st World Senior Team Chess Championship in 2004. Uhlmann played board 1 and Hecht played board 2.

Hecht – Velimirovic, Budapest 1973
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 b6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Bb7 5.Nc3 e6 6.Ndb5 d6 7.Bf4 e5 8.Nd5 Na6 9.Be3 Be7 10.Bc4 Nf6 11.Nxf6+ gxf6 12.Qh5 O-O 13.Nc3 Nc5 14.Bh6 Ne6 15.O-O-O Qc8 16.Bxe6 fxe6 17.Rd3 1-0

Hector, Jonny (1964- )

Grandmaster from Sweden. His FIDE rating is 2534. Hector is Swedish, but has lived in Denmark over 10 years after marrying a Danish woman.

Heidelberg, Germany

Site of the first known chess tournament in 1467. Dr. Ossip Bernstein obtained his doctorate in law at the University of Heidelberg. Aaron Nimzowitch also attended the University of Heidelberg. Emanuel Lasker began his doctorate program in mathematics at the University of Heidelberg. In 1923 Simon Alapin died in Heidelberg. The 1929 World Chess Championship between Alekhine and Bogoljubow was held in Heidelberg in the 9th-11th match games. Alekhine won one game there, and the other two were drawn.

Heidenfeld, Wolfgang (1911-1981)

German-born chess author who lived in South Africa and then settled in Ireland. He was South African Champion in 1939, 1945-46, 1947, 1949, 1951, 1955, 1957, and 1959. He was Irish Champion in 1958, 1963, 1964, 1967, 1968, and 1972. He died in Germany. In 1959, he was champion of Ireland and South Africa while living in Germany. FIDE awarded him the title of International Master, but he declined to accept the award from FIDE.

Heidenfeld – Driman, Johannesburg 1942
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.f4 d5 4.fxe5 Nxe4 5.Nf3 Bg4 6.Qe2 Bxf3 7.Qxf3 Nxc3 8.bxc3 c6 9.d4 Nd7 10.Bd3 Be7 11.O-O O-O 12.Qh3 g6 13.Bh6 Re8 14.Rxf7 Nxe5 15.Rg7+ Kh8 16.dxe5 1-0

Hellers, Ferdinand (1969- )

Swedish grandmaster (1989). He won the 1984-1985 European Junior Championship. His FIDE rating is 2605.

Hellsten, Johan (1975- )

Grandmaster from Sweden. His FIDE rating is 2582.

Helms, Hermann (1870-1963)

First dean of American chess. He wrote a chess column for 62 years, from 1893 to 1955 in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. This is the record for the longest-running uninterrupted chess column under the same authorship. He published the American Chess Bulletin from 1904 to 1963, a period of 59 years. He also wrote weekly chess columns in the New York World Telegram, the Sun, and the : New York Times. He died in Brooklyn, one day after he reached his 93rd birthday. He was instrumental in directing Bobby Fischer to the Brooklyn Chess Club. He won the New York State championship in 1906 and 1925. He was the first to broadcast chess games over the radio (WNYC).

Helms – Tenner, New York 1942
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bb6 5.a4 a6 6.a5 Ba7 7.b5 axb5 8.Bxb5 Nf6 9.Ba3 Nxe4 10.Qe2 Nxf2 11.Nxe5 Nd4 12.Nxd7+ Nxe2 13.Nf6 mate 1-0

Henley, Ron (1956- )

American Grandmaster (1982). He is the only American selected as a second to a Soviet player. He served as second to Anatoly Karpov in the 1990 World Championship match. He was Karpov’s chief trainer for 6 years. He has been a member of the American Stock Exchange since 1985. He won the Texas state championship in 1975 and 1976.

Henley – Gruenfeld, Lone Pine 1981
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 c5 4.d5 exd5 5.cxd5 d6 6.Nc3 g6 7.e4 Bg7 8.Be2 O-O 9.O-O Re8 10.Nd2 Nbd7 11.a4 Ne5 12.h3 g5 13.Nf3 Nxf3+ 14.Bxf3 Nd7 15.Bg4 Ne5 16.Bxc8 Rxc8 17.Qh5 Nd3 18.Bxg5 Qd7 19.Qf3 (threatening 20.Qxf6 and 20.Qxd3) 1-0

Henry I (1068-1135)

King of England who, in 1106, imprisoned his brother Richard, Duke of Normandy, in Cardiff Castle for 28 years. Richard's only activity was playing chess.

Hernandez, Gilberto

Grandmaster from Mexico. His FIDE rating is 2518. He is married to WGM Claudia Amura.

Hernandez, Roman (1949- )

Cuban Grandmaster (1978). He was Cuban Champion in 1981/2. His FIDE rating is 2373.

Tal – Hernandez, Las Palmas 1977
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.c4 Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Nc3 O-O 8.Be2 b6 9.O-O Bb7 10.Qd2 Nxd4 11.Bxd4 e5 12.Bxe5 Nxe4 13.Nxe4 Bxe5 14.Nc3 Re8 15.Rae1 Qf6 16.Qxd7 Re7 17.Qd2 Rae8 18.Nd5 Bxd5 19.cxd5 Qf4 20.Qxf4 Bxf4 21.d6 Rxe2 0-1

Hertneck, Gerald ( 1963- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2539.


Higher Intelligence Auto Response Chess System. HIARCS 8.0 is one of the world’s strongest microcomputer chess programs. In 1993 it won the microcomputer world chess championship. In April, 1997 it defeated FIDE International Master Deen Hegott 4:2 in a 6 game match. This was the first time in history a micro computer chess program defeated a titled FIDE IM in a match at tournament time controls. The program was written by Mark Uniacke of England.

Hickl, Joerg (1965- )

German Grandmaster (1988). His peak FIDE rating is 2605. In 1987, he took 16th out of 17 at the Zagreb Interzonal.

Hillarp Persson, Tiger (1970- )

Grandmaster from Sweden. His FIDE rating is 2511.

Hirschel, Moses (1754-1823)

Chess author from Breslau who wrote the first work in German on the chess writings of Greco and Stamma. His book was entitled Das Schach des Herrn Gioachino Greco Calabrois und.die Schachspiel-Geheimnisse des Arabers Philipp Stamma. In his 1784 edition, he introduced the modern form of algebraic notation, using the initial of the piece to designate it and small letters for the files. In his notation, the square of departure was given, as well as the square of arrival (1.Nf3 would be 1.Ng1-f3). He also introduce the symbols for castling, O-O and O-O-O. Prior to this, the notation for castling kingside was K. G. 1 and for castling queenside was K. C. 1. If no notation was used for castling, it was just spelled out, Castle.


1986 North American computer champion, programmed by Dr. Hans Berliner, formal world correspondence champion. Prior to winning the XVI North American Computer Championship, it won a Pittsburgh masters' tournament with a performance rating of over 2400. In 1988 Hitech won the Pennsylvania State Chess Championship outright after defeating International Master Ed Formanek (2485) in the last round. It was the first computer program to become a U.S. Chess Federation Senior Master and the first to beat a Grandmaster (defeated GM Arnold Denker). In 1990 Hitech won the AEGON-90 tournament in the Netherlands where it beat former World Title Challenger David Bronstein.

Hjartarson, Johann (1963- )

Icelandic grandmaster (1985). He was Icelandic champion in 1980 and 1984. In 1989 he lost to Anatoly Karpov (3 draws, 2 losses, no wins) in the World Quarterfinals Chess Championship match, held in Seattle.

Frois – Hjartarson, Groningen 1981
1.d4 Nf6 2.g3 e6 3.Nf3 c5 4.c4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 d5 6.Bg2 e5 7.Nf3 d4 8.O-O Nc6 9.e3 Bc5 10.exd4 exd4 11.Re1+ Be6 12.Ng5 O-O 13.Nxe6 fxe6 14.Rxe6 d3 15.Bxc6 bxc6 16.Be3 Bd4 17.Nc3 Qd7 18.Qxd3 Qxe6 19.Qxd4 Ng4 20.Re1 Ne5 0-1

HJR 545

House Joint Resolution from the 99th US Congress. On February 27, 1986, Representative Charles Pashayan, Republican Congressman from Fresno, California, introduced a resolution recognizing Bobby Fischer as the official World Chess Champion. It was passed by the House of Representatives by voice vote (unanimous consent) on March 14, 1986 and referred to a Senate committee. It was then referred to the Committee on Judiciary.

Hoang Thang Trang (1980- )

Woman Grandmaster from Vietnam who won the 1998 Women’s World Under-20 Championship, held in India.

Hodges, Albert Beauregard (1861-1944)

Former U.S. Champion. His first job was a hidden operator of Ajeeb, the chess automaton, at the Eden Musee in New York.. He played chess and checkers. He won the US championship in 1894 after defeating Jackson Showalter (5 wins, 3 losses, 1 draw). He never defended his title due to business pressures (he was an accountant). Pillsbury challenged him in 1895 but Hodges declined for business reasons and announced his retirement from the title in 1896. He was the only American master to play against 5 world chess champions over a period of 60 years. He played Zukertort, Steinitz, Lasker, Capablanca, and Alekhine. He won the Manhattan Chess Club Championship and the New York championship (1892, 1893, 1894). He played in all 13 Anglo-American cable matches without losing a game. He founded the Staten Island Chess Club and was its president for 12 years. From 1893 to 1913, he was secretary of the Sailors Snug Harbor. He died of a heart attack.

Michelsen – Hodges, New York 1915
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.d3 Be7 5.O-O d6 6.c3 O-O 7.Bb3 Qe8 8.h3 Be6 9.Bxe6 fxe6 10.Qb3 Nd8 11.Ng5 d5 12.f4 exf4 13.Bxf4 Nh5 14.Be3 Rxf1+ 15.Kxf1 Bxg5 16.Bxg5 Qg6 17.Be3 Qg3 18.Qa4 Nc6 19.Bc5 Nf4 20.Qd1 Qxg2+ 21.Ke1 Ne5 0-1

Hodgson, Julian (1963- )

British Grandmaster (1989). Winner of the 1992 British Championship with an all-time record of 10 out of 11 points. He was the winner of the 1991 British Championship as well. He won the British championship again in 2000. In 1995 and 1998 he won the National Open in Las Vegas.

Hugne – Hodgson, London 1987
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.Nf3 cxd4 4.Nxd4 e5 5.Nb5 d5 6.cxd5 Bc5 7.d6 Ne4 8.Nc7+? (8.Be3) 8...Qxc7 9.Qa4+ Qc6 0-1

Hoesslinger, Anton (1875-1959)

Born in Ingolstadt, Bavaria, he introduced the first modern grading system. In 1948, he published his grading list (the Ingo system) based on collected tournament results in the periodical Bayerische Schacht. He worked as a postal supervisor.

Hoffer, Leopold (1842-1913)

Hungarian-born English chess journalist. He founded (along with Zukertort) and edited the Chess Monthly from September 1879 to 1896. He wrote for the Standard and the Westminster Gazette. In 1882, he took over Steinitz’s chess column in The Field when Steinitz moved to America. He founded the British Chess Club in 1895.

Holland, Kirk

Chicago chess player who is perhaps the oldest active chess player in the United States. He is still playing in rated tournaments at age 94. He chaired the meeting that merged the American Chess Federation (Holland was President) with the National Chess Federation to form the United States Chess Federation in 1939.

Hong Kong

The Hong Kong Chess Federation formed in 1961. The Hong Kong team in the 1974 Students' Chess Olympiad consisted of five brothers aged 8 to 18. In 1990 the Hong Kong Olympiad team consisted of four players from four different countries.

Hooper, David (1915-1998)

British correspondence chess champion in 1944 and London champion in 1948. Author of 10 chess books. He played in the British Championship 5 times, taking 3rd place in 1954. He was an architect by profession.

Hope, Bob (1903-2003 )

Got World Chess Champion Bobby Fischer to appear on one of his television specials in 1972. Bob Hope stated that Fischer was the worst guest he ever had to deal with when he (Fischer) appeared on his special. Hope did a skit where he was an annoying kibitzer while Fischer was playing chess.

Horowitz, Israel Albert (1907-1973)

Chess publisher, author, promoter and International Master (1950). He won or tied three U.S. Open titles (1936, 1938, 1943). He was one of the founders of Chess Review magazine in 1932 and the author of more than 20 chess books. In 1940 he survived a car crash that killed his chess partner, Harold Morton (1906-1940). The two had been giving simultaneous chess exhibitions throughout the country. On February 17, 1940, a truck collided with the car in which Morton was driving near Carroll, Iowa. Morton, New England chess champion since 1929, was killed instantly and Horowitz had a brain concussion and other injuries. In 1944, Horowitz made a spectacular move in a tournament in Kansas City. His opponent literally dropped dead of a heart attack. Horowitz was inducted in the US Chess Hall of Fame in 1989.

Horowitz – Unknown, Los Angeles 1940
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Qg4 Qf6 5.Nd5 Qxf2+ 6.Kd1 Kf8 7.Nh3 Qd4 8.d3 Bb6 9.Rf1 Nf6 10.Rxf6 d6 11.Qxg7+ Kxg7 12.Bh6+ Kg8 13.Rg6+ hxg6 14.Nf6 mate 1-0

Hort, Vlastimil (1944- )

Czech grandmaster (1965) and former world championship candidate who immigrated to Germany in 1985. In the mid-1970s he was ranked no.4 in the world. In April 1977 he played 550 opponents, 201 simultaneously, and lost only 10 games after 30 hours of play in Iceland. In 1984 he played 663 games in a simultaneous exhibition in 32 and a half hours at Porz, West Germany. He worked for a general-interest magazine as a translator.

Damjanovic – Hort, Sarajevo 1964
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Be2 O-O 6.Nf3 e5 7.d5 Nbd7 8.Bg5 h6 9.Bh4 g5 10.Bg3 Nh5 11.h4 Nxg3 0-1

Hort – Shelandinov, Havana 1967
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Bxc6 dxc6 5.O-O f6 6.d4 exd4 7.Nxd4 c5 8.Nb3 Qxd1 9.Rxd1 Bd6 10.Na5 Bg4 11.f3 O-O-O? 12.e5 1-0

Horvath, Adam (1981- )

Grandmaster from Hungary. His FIDE rating is 2545.

Horvath, Csaba (1968- )

Grandmaster from Hungary. His FIDE rating is 2542.

Horvath, Jozsef (1964- )

Grandmaster from Hungary. His FIDE rating is 2512.

Horwitz, Bernard (1807-1885)

German born painter and chess study composer. He won the first study-composing chess tournament, held in 1862. Along with Josef Kling, he wrote Chess Studies and End-Games in 1851, reprinted in 1884 with 208 endgame studies. He was one of the Berlin Pleiades. He lent his name to the Horwitz Bishops, which are two bishops working in tandem on adjacent diagonals.

Schulten – Horwitz, London 1846
1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 Nf6 3.Nc3 b5 4.Bxb5 Bc5 5.d3 c6 6.Bc4 Qb6 7.Qe2 d5 8.exd5 O-O 9.Ne4 Nxe4 10.dxe4 Bxf2+ 11.Qxf2 Qb4+ 12.Bd2 Qxc4 13.Qf3 f5 14.exf5 Bxf5 15.Qb3 Qf1+ 16.Kxf1 Bd3+ 17.Ke1 Rf1 mate 0-1

Howard, Kenneth Samuel (1882-1972)

Chess problem composer. He won the New York State Championship in 1918.

Howell, James (1967- )

Grandmaster from England. His FIDE rating is 2495.

Hracek, Zbynek (1970- )

Grandmaster from the Czech Republic. His FIDE rating is 2591.

Hromadka, Karel (1887-1956)

Czech chess champion in 1913 and 1921. He was one of the chief pioneers of the Modern Benoni. His lifetime Elo rating was about 2440.

Abonyi – Hromadka, Prague 1908
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bb5 Nd4 5.Ba4 c6 6.O-O Bc5 7.Nxe5 d6 8.Nd3 Bg4 9.Qe1 Nf3+ 10.gxf3 Bxf3 11.e5 O-O 12.exd6 Ng4 13.Qe7 Bxd6 0-1

Huebner, Robert (1948- )

German Grandmaster (1971) and strongest German player since World War II. In 1967 he won the German championship. In 1971 he was playing in a candidates match with Petrosian when he made a mistake in his 7th game. He overlooked a winning move, became demoralized after he saw the mistake, resigned, burst into tears, and withdrew from the match. He said he was bothered by street noises. Petrosian merely turned his hearing aid down. In 1982 he tied in a match with Smyslov in a Candidates match. To break the tie, both players agreed to use a roulette wheel to select a winner. Huebner’s color was black and Smyslov’s color was red. The wheel was spun and it came up green (0). A second spin came up red (3) in Smyslov’s favor. Huebner is a papyrologist and has a PhD. He is also a world-class player in Chinese chess (Xiangqi). He learned how to play chess from his father at the age of 5.

Huebner – Siaperas, Athens 1969
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Bxc6 bxc6 5.O-O d6 6.c3 e5 7.cxd4 Qc7 8.Na3 Ne7 9.Nc4 Ng6 10.Nc4 Ng6 11.Bd2 a5 12.Qa4 Ba6 (12...Bg4) 13.Rfc1 Bb5 14.Qc2 Be7 15.Nxa5 Rxa5 16.Bxa5 Qxa5 17.a4 Ba6 18.Qxc6+ (18...Kd8 19.b4 Qxb4 20.Rab1) 1-0

Hug, Werner (1952- )

Swiss International Master (1971). He won the 11th World Junior Champion in 1971 (played in Athens) and was Swiss champion in 1975. In 1979 he set a world record, playing 560 simultaneous games, winning 365, drawing 126, and losing 49. He was the first Swiss player to hold a world title.

Hulak, Krunoslav (1951- )

Croatian Grandmaster (1976). He was Yugoslav chess champion in 1976.

Hulak – Tratar, Pula 2001
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 d6 3.Nf3 g6 4.g3 Bg7 5.Bg2 O-O 6.O-O Nbd7 7.Nc3 e5 8.e4 a6 9.d5 Qe7 10.Bd2 Kh8 11.Ne1 Ng8 12.Nd3 f5 13.Qc2 Ngf6 14.Rae1 Qf7 15.f4 fxe4 16.Nxe4 Nxe4 17.Bxe4 Qg8 18.Bc3 exf4 19.Nxf4 Ne5 20.Bxg6 1-0

Humpy, Koneru (1987- )

In 2002, she won the girls’ world junior chess championship and was the British Ladies Champion.. In 1997, she was the girls’ World Under-10 chess champion. In 1998, she was the girls’ World Under-12 chess champion. In 1999, she was Asia’s youngest International Women Master. In 2000, she won the British Ladies Championship, becoming the youngest winner of the British Ladies title. In 2001, she was the girls’ World Under-14 champion. At age 14, she became Asia’s youngest Woman Grandmaster. She was India’s second Woman Grandmaster (the first was Subbaramen Vijayalakshmi). In 2002, she became the first woman chess player from India to receive the Men’s Grandmaster title, at the age of 15 years, 1 month, and 27 days. This is three months less than Judit Polgar’s previous record. She is the youngest female grandmaster and the world’s youngest Grandmaster.

Hund, Barbara (1959- )

West Germany's first woman Grandmaster (1982). She was born 13 days after her mother, Juliane, played in the German Women's Chess Championship. She won the German Women’s Championship in 1978. She now lives in Switzerland.

Hund – Vuji, Leon 2001
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.f4 Qc7 7.Bd3 g6 8.Nf3 Nc6 9.O-O Bg7 10.Qe1 b5 11.Qh4 b4 12.Nd1 Qb6+ 13.Be3 Qc7 14.Kh1 Ng4 15.f5 gxf5 16.exf5 h5 17.Bg5 Bf6 18.Bxf6 Nxf6 19.a3 Rb8 20.Ne3 Rg8 21.Rae1 Kd8 22.Bc4 Rg7 23.Nd5 Nxd5 24.Bxd5 Bb7 25.f6 1-0

Huon of Bordeaux

A romance written around 1200 describing a servant who plays chess against a princess for her hand in marriage. If he loses the game, he loses his head. She finally lets him win.

Huzman, Alexander (1962- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2577.

Hyde, Thomas (1634-1703)

Author of De Ludis Orientalibus (the Book of Oriental Games) in 1694. This book documented correspondence games between Venetian and Croation merchants as early as 1650. He also wrote Mandragoria,s seu, Historia Shahiludi: vis ejusdem origo, antiquitas, ususque per totum Orientem cereberrimusi (The Mandragoriad or History of the Chess game: that is to say its origin, age and use, most famous throughout the whole orient) in 1694, the first scientific contribution to the history of chess. He was the first person to establish beyond doubt that chess originated in India. He was one of the first Oriental scholars of his age. He was a professor of Hebrew and Arabic at Oxford University and librarian-in-chief of the Bodleian Library. He was Eastern interpreter under Charles II, James II, and William III. He mastered the Turkish, Arabic, Syriac, Persian, Hebrew, Malay, and Chinese languages.

Ibragimov, Alibek

Grandmaster from Kazakhstan. His FIDE rating is 2509.

Ibragimov, Iidar (1967- )

Grandmaster now living in the United States. His FIDE rating is 2605.


International Computer Chess Association. Founded in 1977 to represent computer chess through computer science organizations. It is now known as the ICGA (International Computer Games Association).


Has the highest per capita chess population in the world. A government-run lottery helps finance chess and handball tournaments. Iceland had 9 Grandmasters, 7 International Masters, and 16 FIDE masters in a country of only 250,000 inhabitants. It is the only country that has more grandmasters than international masters. Professional chess players receive a government state pension to support their chess playing. In 1997, Iceland staged the first national Internet championship in the world.

Ilincic, Zlatko (1968- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2470.

Ilivitsky, Georgy (1921-1989)

Russian International Master (1955). He took 3rd in the 1955 USSR Championship. He committed suicide in 1989.

Iljumzhinov, Kirsan (1962- )

Elected President of the International Chess Federation (FIDE) in 1995. He is also the President of the Russian Republic of Kalmykia, the youngest president of a sovereign country. He was elected President of his country at the age of 30 in 1993. He made chess a compulsory subject in school.

Illescas Cordoba, Miguel (1965- )

Spanish Grandmaster (1988). His FIDE rating is 2624. In 2004, he was the Spanish Champion.

Ilyin-Genevsky, Alexander (1894-1941)

The Russian master who had to learn the game twice. He was gassed, then shell-shocked in World War I, which took away his memory. Irving Chernev wrote that a bullet entered Ilyin-Genevsky’s brain, which caused the memory loss. He had previously been champion of Geneva where he added the city's name to his own . He had to learn the game all over again, starting from how each piece moved. He was a member of an underground Bolshevik organization in high school, which led to his expulsion. Forbidden to re-enter any Russian school, he went to Geneva where he performed party work for Lenin. During the October Revolution and Russian Civil War he was the head of the Moscow Reservists. Alexander held the post of Chief Government Commissar for General Military Education. He actively encouraged and organized chess activities as part of the campaign to promote education and culture in the Red Army. His older brother was Fyodor Raskolnikov who was involved in a naval uprising at Kronstadt. Alexander started and edited a chess column in the Red Army magazine K Novai Armii. He organized the first USSR chess championship in 1920. He later became the editor of Shakhmatny Listok. He was Leningrad chess champion in 1925, 1926, and 1929. He won the first Trade Unions Championship of the USSR in 1927. In 1941, while trying to escape from Leningrad on a barge with dozens of other passengers, the Germans bombed the barge. Alexander was the only one killed.

Rauzer – Ilyin-Genevsky , Tbilisi 1937
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 exd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.f3 d5 6.e5 Nfd7 7.f3 Nc6 8.Nxc6 bxc6 9.Bd3 Qh4+ 10.g3 Qh3 11.Qf3 Bc5 12.Be3 O-O 13.Nd2 f6 14.exf6 Re8 15.Nf1 Nxf6 16.Kd2 Bg4 17.Qf2 d4 18.Bxd4 Re2+ 19.Bxe2 Ne4+ 0-1

Immortal Game

A name given by Falkbeer to the Anderssen-Kieseritzky game, London, 1851.

Adolf Anderssen – Lionel Kieseritzky, London 1851, King’s Gambit Accepted.
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Bc4 Qh4+ 4.Kf1 b5 5.Bxb5 Nf6 6.Nf3 Qh6 7.d3 Nh5 8.Nh4 Qg5 9.Nf5 c6 10.g4 Nf6 11.Rg1 cxb5 12.h4 Qg6 13.h5 Qg5 14 Qf3 Ng8 15.Bxf4 Qf6 16.Nc3 Bc5 17.Nd5! Qxb2 18.Bd6! Bxg1 19.e5 Qxa1+ 20.Ke2 Na6 21.Nxg7+ Kd8 22.Qf6+! Nxf6 23.Be7 mate 1-0

Ingo system

The first chess rating system. It was introduced by Anton Hoesslinger in 1948 and named after his birthplace of Inglostadt, Bavaria. It was first described in Bayerische Schacht chess magazine. In this system, the lower ratings represent greater playing strength.

Inkiov, Ventzislav (1956- )

Bulgarian Grandmaster (1982). He won the Bulgarian championship in 1982. His FIDE rating is 2472. In 1987, he took 13th in the Zagreb Interzonal.

International Woman Grandmaster

Title created by FIDE in 1976. The first women to receive this title were Nana Alexandria, Nona Gaprindashvili, Alla Kushnir, Irena Levitina, and Milunka Lazarevic.

Ionov, Sergey (1962- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2522.

Ioseliani, Nana (1961- )

Former World Women’s Championship challenger. She is a woman’s international grandmaster (1980) from the Republic of Georgia and was once ranked no. 2 in the world for women chess players. She was USSR Women’s Champion in 1981 and 1982.

Nemet – Ioseliani, Biel 1989
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 e6 4.Nc3 Be7 5.cxd5 exd5 6.Bg5 c6 7.e3 Bf5 8.Bd3 Bxd3 9.Qxd3 Nbd7 10.O-O O-O 11.Rab1 Ne4 12.Bf4 g5 13.Bg3 f5 14.Ne5 f4 15.exf4 gxf4 16.Bxf4 Rxf4 17.Nxe4 Nxe5 (18.dxe5 dxe4) 0-1

Ippolito, Dean (1979- )

International Master (1999). In 1988, he was the U.S. Junior Open Under-13 Champion (the youngest ever). In 1992, he was the U.S. Amateur Champion. In 1994, he was the U.S. Cadet Champion. In 1996, he was the National High School Champion. In 1997, he was the Marshall Chess Club Champion. He was the New Jersey Open Champion in 2001 and 2002.

Irzhanov, Ruslan (1976- )

Grandmaster from Kazakhstan. His FIDE rating is 2494.


In 1982 the Israel Chess Championship was stopped as several of its participants were called up for Army service in Lebanon. The entire 1996 Israeli Olympiad team was born in Russia.

Istratescu, Andrei (1975- )

Grandmaster from Romania. His FIDE rating is 2624.


Italian chess players dominated the game during the first two centuries of the modern game. The players included Pedro Damiano (1500?-1544), Paolo Boi (1528-1598), Giulio Polerio (1550-1610), Leonardo da Cutro (1552-1597), Alessandro Salvio (1570-1640), Pietro Carrera (1573-1647), Gioacchino Greco (1600-1634), Giovan Lolli (1698-1769), Domenico Ponziani (1719-1796), and Ercole Del Rio (1720-1800). Correspondence chess may have started in Italy when Venetian and Croatian merchants played chess by dispatches around the mid-17th century. In 1836, correspondence games were published for the first time in Italy by Giuseppe Gasbarri of Florence. The first postal game played in Italy on record was held in 1875-76 between the chess clubs of Ferrara and Livorno. The first chess game by telephone in Italy was played in 1880 in Livorno. The first telegraphic chess match in Italy was held in 1897 between the Milan Chess Club and the Chess Club of Palermo. The first Italian chess correspondence tournament began in 1895 and ended in 1899. The winner was Francesco Abbadess from Palermo. In 1898, the first Italian chess federation, the Unione Scacchistica Italiana, was formed. It was disbanded in 1914. In 1982 the Italian Chess Federation refused to allow one of its best players, Stefano Tatai, to play on the Italian Olympiad team. Tatai was 44 and seven time national champion. The Italian Chess Federation only wanted members that were age 30 or younger to represent Italy. The result was a very poor showing at the Olympiad. The 1980 Italian championship was delayed until 1981 because of an earthquake.

Iturralde, Maria Teresa Mora (1907- )

Women’s World Championship Challenger in 1939 and 1949. She was awarded the Women’s International Master title in 1950. She was born in Cuba.

Iuldachev, Saidali (1968- )

Grandmaster from Uzbekistan. His FIDE rating is 2541.

Ivan IV Vasilyevich “the Terrible” (1530-1584)

Tsar of Russia and keen chess player. In 1547 he was the first formally proclaimed tsar (from the Roman imperial title Caesar) of Russia. In 1551, Ivan IV banned chess and labeled it a pastime of Hellenic deviltry, even though he played chess himself. On March 18, 1584, he died, probably of a heart attack, while preparing for a game of chess against his advisor, Boris Godunov (1551-1605). A Soviet forensic examination of his remains revealed that he had taken mercury as medicine, but no signs that he had been poisoned.

Ivanchuk, Vasily (1969- )

Grandmaster (1988) from the Ukraine. Winner of the 1988 New York Open. He has been one of the top players in the world. He played in the finals of the men’s FIDE world chess championship in 2002, but lost to Ruslan Ponomariov in the championship match.

Ivanchuk – S. Polgar, Roquebrune 1992
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 c5 3.c4 dxc4 4.d5 e6 5.Nc3 Nf6 6.e4 exd5 7.e5 Nfd7 8.Bg5 f6 9.exf6 gxf6 10.Qe2+ Kf7 11.Nxd5 Bg7 12.Be3 b5 13.O-O-O Qa5 (13...Bb7) 14.Bd2 Qd8 15.Ng5+ fxg5 16.Qh5+ Ke6 17.Bxg5 Qa5 18.Nf4+ (18...Kf5 19.g4+ Ke4 20.Bg2+ Ke5 21.Rd5 mate) 1-0

Ivanisevic, Ivan (1977- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2577.

Ivanov, Alexander (1956- )

Grandmaster (1991) born in Omsk in the former USSR. He arrived in the United States in 1988. He is married to Esther Epstein, a top woman chess player. He shared the US championship in 1995 with Patrick Wolff and Nick deFirmian.

Seltzer – A. Ivanov, Philadelphia 1993
1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.Nf3 d6 4.c4 Bg4 5.Be2 Nc6 6.Be3 e5 7.Nxe5 dxe5 8.Bxg4 exd4 9.Bf4 h5 10.Be2 d3 0-1

Ivanov, Igor Vasilievich (1947-2005)

Grandmaster (2004) who defected from the Soviet Union to Canada in 1980. He had been part of a Soviet team which went to Cuba to play in the Capablanca Memoria. On the way back to Russia, during a refueling stop in Gander, Newfoundland, he left the aircraft (and KGB officers) and defected. His first game in the West was drawn after 14 moves, thinking his opponent was a strong master. His opponent's rating was later found out to be 1651. In 1982, while representing Canada in the Toluca Interzonal, Ivanov missed the Grandmaster title and qualifying for the Candidates by a half-point. He tied for 1st place at the American Open in 1984, 1985, 1990, 1995, and 1997. He was won the U.S. Grand Prix championship 9 times and has won the Canadian nationals championship 5 times. He learned English by watching television (his favorite show was the Untouchables). He died of cancer of the esophagus on November 17, 2005, in St, George, Utah. He was born in Leningrad on January 8, 1947. He was an accomplished musician on the piano and cello.

Vorotnikov – I. Ivanov, Vilnius 1977
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.g3 Bb4 4.Bg2 O-O 5.Nge2 c6 6.O-O d5 7.d4 exd4 8.Qxd4 c5 9.Qd1 dxe4 10.Nxe4 Nxe4 11.Bxe4 Qe7 12.Qd3 Re8 13.Bxh7+ Kh8 14.c3 c4 15.Qc2 Qxe2 16.cxb4 Qxf1+ (17.Kxf1 Bh3+ 18.Kg1 Re1 mate) 0-1

Ivanov, Mikhail (1969- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2462.

Ivanov, Sergey (1961- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2538.

Ivanovic, Bozidar (1946- )

Yugoslav (Serbia and Montenegro) Grandmaster (1977). He was Yugoslav champion in 1973, 1981 and 1983.

Ivins, Walter (1870-1968)

Chess master Emeritus from Tucson, Arizona. He started playing chess at 10. In the 1890s he won the championship of Philadelphia. He won the championship of Tucson several times. He died at the age of 98. He played chess for 85 years, perhaps a record.

Ivkov, Borislav (1933- )

Yugoslav (Serbia and Montenegro) Grandmaster (1955). Winner of the first World Junior Championship, held in England, in 1951. In 1965 he lost to Bent Larsen in the Candidates match quarterfinals. He is married to a former "Miss Argentina."

Raditsch – Ivkov, Yugoslavia 1948
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 d5 3.c4 dxc4 4.a4 c5 5.Nc3 cxd4 6.Qxd4 Bd7 7.Qxc4 Nc6 8.Bf4 Rc8 9.Rd1 e5 10.Bg3 Nb4 11.Qb3 Qb6 12.Kd2 Be6 13.Qa3 Rxc3 (14.bxc3 Ne4+ 15.Kc1 Na2+; 14.Qxc3 Ne4+; 14.Kxc3 Ne4 mate) 0-1

Izeta Txabarri, Felix (1961- )

Grandmaster from Spain. His FIDE rating is 2459.

Izmailov, Pyotr (1906-1937)

In 1928, he was the first champion of the Russian Republic. In 1929, he tied for 1st place (defeating Botvinnik) in the 1st semi-final of the 6th USSR championship in Odessa, but could not play in the finals (won by Verlinksy) because he was taking final exams at school. He became a geophysicist and led major geological expeditions. In 1936, he was arrested and sentenced to death, accused of plotting to kill Stalin. In was executed in April, 1937. He wife was sentenced to eight years at Lolyma (the Arctic Death Camp) simply because she was a member of the family of a traitor.

Izmukhambetov, Salauat

Grandmaster from Kazakhstan. His FIDE rating is 2431.

Jacimovic, Dragoljub (1964- )

Grandmaster from Macedonia. His FIDE rating is 2438.

Jackson, E. Schuyler (1897-1987)

His chess career spanned over 70 years. He played in his first chess tournament in 1913. He won the U.S. Amateur championship in 1942 and 1944. He was a Wall Street broker.

Jackson, Sheila (1957- )

She finished 1st in the British Women’s Champion in 1975, 1977 (lost the play-off), 1978, 1980, and 1981.

Jaenisch, Karl (Carl) Friedrich von (1813-1872)

Russian chess player and analyst. In 1842 he gave the name to the French Defense (1.e4 e6) and the Center Game (1.e4 e5 2.d4) in his book Analyse Nouvelle des ouvertures du jeu des Echecs. He was a major in the Russian army, but resigned his commission to devote himself to chess.

Janjgava, Lasha (1970- )

Grandmaster from Georgia. His FIDE rating is 2472.

Janosevic, Dragoljub (1923- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1965). He is only one of three players (the other two are Tal and Geller) who as a plus record against Fischer. He has one win, two draws, and no losses against Fischer.

Tagirov – Janosevic, Belgrade 1953
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.f4 d5 4.fxe5 Nxe4 5.Nxe4 dxe4 6.d4 exd3 7.Bxd3 Nc6 8.Nf3 Bc5 9.Bf4 Bg4 10.Qe2 Nd4 11.Qf1 Qd5 12.Nd2 O-O-O 13.Be4 Qxe4+ 14.Nxe4 Nxc2 mate 0-1

Janovsky, Sergey (1960- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2496.

Janowski, Dawid Markyelovich (1868-1927)

Polish chess player of Grandmaster strength and addicted gambler. In 1901 he won an international tournament at Monte Carlo and lost all his first place money in the casino the same evening the tournament ended. The casino management had to buy his ticket home. In another event he handed his money to a friend and made him promise not to return it until after the chess tournament. However, the lure of gambling proved too strong and he begged for the return of his money. His friend refused. Janowski was so infuriated that he sued his friend. Janowski had a chess patron, the Dutch painter Leo Nardus who, for many years, supported him in chess. He lost his support when Janowski called Nardus a chess idiot when Nardus suggested an alternate move during an analysis of one of Janowski's games. Janowski was famous for his complaints which served as alibis when he lost. At one tournament every one of his requests was granted and for the first he had nothing to complain about. When he lost the tournament he said, "You have deprived me of any alibi. How did you expect me to play good chess?" He died of tuberculosis, the night before he was to start play in a small chess tournament in Hyeres, France. A subscription was raised to prevent his being buried in a pauper's grave.

Ettlinger – Janowski, New York 1898
1.e4 e5 2.f4 Bc5 3.Nf3 d5 4.Nxe5 dxe4 5.Nc3 Nf6 6.Qe2 Nc6 7.Nxf7 Qe7 8.Nxh8 Nd4 9.Qd1 Nf3+ 10.Ke2 Bg4 11.h3 Nd4+ 12.Ke1 Bxd1 0-1

Jansa, Vlastimil (1942- )

Czech Grandmaster (1974) and Czech champion in 1964, 1974, and 1984. He has also played in the Czech national junior soccer team.

Jansa – Ziegler, Gausdal 1990
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.Nc3 a6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 d6 6.Be2 Nf6 7.O-O Be7 8.a4 O-O 9.Be3 b6 10.Bf3 Bb7 11.e5 Bxf3 12.Qxf3 dxe5 13.Nxe6 (13...fxe6 14.Qxa8) 1-0


The Japanese confiscated chess books during World War II, thinking they were military codes. Japan did not have an organized chess federation until 1968. Their first national chess tournament took

place in 1969. Shogi is a variant of chess that is more popular in Japan.

Jarecki, Carol

One of the most active international chess arbiters in the world. She is a former anesthesiologist and avid pilot. She is the mother of John Jarecki. She was the first woman to serve as chief arbiter for any world-championship-cycle match (Karpov-Hjartarson, Seattle 1989).

Jarecki, John (1969- )

The first person to win the National Elementary and National Junior High Chess Championship in the same year (1980). He won the National Elementary championship in Minneapolis with a perfect 8-0 score. A week later, he won the National Junior High Championship in Philadelphia with a perfect 8-0. In 1980, at the age of 11, he played on Board 2 for the British Virgin Islands, perhaps the youngest player to play in a chess olympiad. In 1981 he repeated as the National Junior High champion. In 1981, he became a chess master at age 12 years, 6 months. At the time, he became the youngest master ever in the United States.

Jefferson, Thomas (1743-1826)

Avid chess player and collector. He collected dozens of chess sets when he visited Europe or had them sent to his home in Monticello. He also gave away chess sets as presents. His favorite book was Philidor’s treatise on chess. He played any visitor who knew how to play chess at his home in Monticello. Jefferson played Franklin a lot and said he was equal to him at the game in his memoirs. Another one of his opponents was James Madison. Jefferson once visited a Paris chess club and lost all his games very quickly. He said there was no use playing chess with players who spend several hours every evening in a chess club playing chess. Jefferson taught and played chess with his grandchildren in the West Lawn of Monticello. His nickname was “The King Chess Player.”

Jenni, Florian (1980- )

Grandmaster from Switzerland. His FIDE rating is 2494.


Site of the 1967 World Junior Championship, won by Julio Kaplan of Puerto Rico. Raymond Keene took 2nd, Jan Timman took 3rd, and Robert Huebner took 4th. All the Communist-bloc countries, except Romania, boycotted the event following the Israeli-Arab war.

Jobava, Baadur (1983- )

Grandmaster from Georgia. His FIDE rating is 2621.


The first chess club in Johannesburg was set up in 1891. Lord Randolph Churchill was the first president of the Johannesburg Chess Club. In 1981, the first Category 16 tournament, the strongest ever held up to that date, was held in Johannesburg. It was won by Ulf Andersson.

Johannessen, Leif Erlend (1980- )

Grandmaster from Norway. His FIDE rating is 2543.

Johansen, Darryl (1959- )

One of two Australian grandmasters (the other is Ian Rogers). He has won the Australian championship 5 times (1984, 1988, 1990, 2000, 2002).

Farrand – Johansen, Hastings 1980
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4 exf4 4.Nf3 g5 5.Bc4 g4 6.O-O gxf3 7.Qxf3 Qg5 8.Nd5 Nd4 9.Qd1 Nf6 10.Nxc7+ Kd8 11.d3 Rg8 12.g3 Nh5 13.Bxf7 Nxg3 14.Bxg8 Nxf1+ 15.Kxf1 d5 16.Kf2 Bc5 17.c3 Bg4 18.cxd4 Qh4+ 0-1

Johner, Hans (1889-1975)

Swiss International Master (1950) who won the Swiss championship 12 times from 1908 to 1950. His brother, Paul, won it 6 times. Hans Johner was once a director of the Zurich Philharmonic Orchestra. He was still playing chess in international tournaments in his 70s.

Jolson, Al (1886-1950)

Al Jolson formed a chess club called the Knight Riders of the Air, consisting of radio stars. Al Jolson was the first movie actor to star in the first, full-length, talking picture, The Jazz Singer, in 1927.

Jones, Ernest (1879-1958)

Psychoanalyst who wrote, The Problem of Paul Morphy, the most famous example of a single case study in the psychoanalytic discipline. It was delivered to the British Psychoanalytical Society in 1930, dealing with the unconscious motives of chess players. His conclusion was that the game of chess was a disguised method of gratifying hostile impulses.

Jones, William (1746-1794)

Judge and linguist who composed the poem Caissa in 1763 and published in 1772. Jones based his poem on Hieronymus Vida’s Scacchia ludus, published in 1527. In the poem Caissa, Mars becomes infatuated with a nymph called Caissa. He gives her a board and chess set, and they play chess together. Jones translated the first Sanskrit reference to chess. In 1790 he wrote On the Indian Game of Chess.

Judd, Max (Maximilian Judkiewich) (1851-1906)

Max Judd (Maximlian Judkiewich) was born in Cracow on December 27, 1851 and emigrated to America in 1862. He was an American cloak manufacturer, consul-general in Vienna, and chess master. In 1881, he lost a chess match with George Mackenzie for the US chess championship (+5-7=3), held in St. Louis. In 1887 Judd defeated Albert Hodges (+5-2=2) in a non-title match, held in St, Louis. In 1888, Judd took last place in the 1st Unites States Chess Association tournament, held in Cincinnati (won by Jackson Showalter). In 1890, Judd defeated US chess champion Showalter in a match in St. Louis (+7-3=0), but did not claim the title. In 1892, Judd lost to Showalter in a match in St, Louis (+4-7=3). In 1899, he lost a match against Harry Pillsbury in St. Louis (+1-4=0). In 1903 he won the Western Chess Congress (US Open) in Chicago. At one time he was offered to play in Ajeeb, the Automaton in New York, but he did not want to leave St. Louis. The job was then offered to Albert Hodges. He had the habit of sucking on a lemon when it was his opponent’s move. He was founder and president of the St. Louis Chess Club. He was appointed by President Cleveland as the U.S. Consul General to Austria. He played in six American Chess Congress tournaments. He took 4th place in the 2nd American Chess Congress in Cleveland in 1871. He took 3rd place in the 3rd American Chess Congress in Chicago in 1874. He took 2nd place in the 4th American Chess Congress in Philadelphia in 1876. He took 5th place in the 5th American Chess Congress in New York in 1880. He took 8th place in the 6th American Chess Congress in New York in 1889. He took 2nd place in the 7th American Chess Congress in St, Louis in 1904. In 1904, Judd tried to arrange the Seventh American Chess Congress in St. Louis, with the stipulation that the US title be awarded to the winner. Pillsbury objected to Judd’s plans, so the stipulation was not accepted. Frank Marsahll won the 7th American Congress in St. Louis in 1904.

Junge, Klaus (1824-1945)

German player who was born in Chile and moved to Germany in the 1930s. In 1941, at the age of 17, he tied for first place in the German championship. In Prague 1942, he tied for first with Alekhine. In Salzburg 1942 he tied for 3rd place, behind Alekhine and Keres. He was Lieutenant in the German army (12th SS-battalion) and was shot and killed on April 17, 1945 (one day before World II ended in Europe) trying to defend Hamburg, Germany. He was given a chance to surrender, but came charging out shouting, “Sieg Heil!” and was shot. He was 21. George Koltanowski claimed that Junge was stabbed to death in a chess club fight, which is wrong.

Kaenel, Hans (1952- )

Swiss player who set the world blitz (5-minute game) continuous play record in 1981 after playing 60 hours and 39 minutes. He played 420 games and made 17,286 moves. We won 320 games, lost 79, and drew 31. The average rating of his opponents was 2222. He had played an average of 7.1 games per hour. The most prominent opponent was Victor Kortchnoi whom he won 1, drew 1, and lost 4 games.

Kaidanov, Gregory (1959- )

Grandmaster (1988) who was Russian Boys under-14 champion in 1972. He won the New York Open in 1990. In 1992 he won the World Open, the US Open, the National Open, and the Novag Grand Prix. He now lives in Kentucky. His first experiences in the United States were not good. In the first week, as a tourist in New York city, all his and his wife’s luggage were stolen from the trunk of a car while he was having dinner at a restaurant. The next day, he was attacked by a gang, and robbed of all his money and airline tickets. To make money from his losses, he began to give simuls and play in chess tournaments. He was invited to Louisville, Kentucky to teach chess and made the decision to emigrate and live there.

Klotz – Kaidanov, 1992
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.e3 Nf6 4.Nc3 c5 5.Nf3 a6 6.a4 Nc6 7.Rb1 Be7 8.Na2 cxd4 9.Nxd4 O-O 10.Nc3 e5 11.Nf3 d4 12.exd4 exd4 13.Nd5 Nxd5 14.cxd5 Bb4+ 15.Bd2 Re8+ 16.Be2 d3 17.dxc6 Bxd2+ 18.Nxd2 Rxe2+ 19.Kf1 Qd4 (threatening 20...Qxf2 mate) 0-1


In 1974, winner of the first World Computer Chess Championship, held in Stockholm. The program was written at the Institute of Control Science in Moscow. It scored 100% ahead of 11 other entries. In 1975, the KAISSA programmers wrote a program to analyze Queen and Pawn endings. Grandmaster David Bronstein had one of these endings in a tournament game in Vilnius in 1975. When he adjourned his game, he telephoned KAISSA’s programmers to ask them to look up their program’s library and find the best possible continuation for him. He played according to the program’s library and won. Bronstein said that the solution was so beautiful, that he would have never thought of it himself.

Kalish, John (1937- )

International Master postal player. Kalish has won the championship of Okinawa 25 consecutive times (from 1959 to 1984). In 1976 he tied for first with Victor Palciauskas in the 2nd North American Invitational Correspondence Chess Championship. He took last place in the 10th World Chess Correspondence Championship (1978-1984). The event was won by Palciuskas. He learned chess at the age of 16.

Kalish – Dunphy, Okinawa 1966
1.e4 e5 2.f4 Bc5 3.Nf3 d6 4.Nc3 Nf6 5.Bc4 Nc6 6.d3 O-O 7.f5 Na5 8.Bg5 Nxc4 9.dxc4 c6 10.Qd3 Qc7 11.Bxf6 gxf6 12.O-O-O Rb8 13.h4 b5 14.cxb5 cxb5 15.Nd5 Qd8 16.Qd2 Bb7 17.Qh6 Bxd5 18.Ng5 Be3+ 19.Kb1 1-0

Kallai, Gabor (1959- )

Grandmaster from Hungary. His FIDE rating is 2504.

Kalme, Charles (1939-2002)

U.S. Junior Champion in 1954 and 1955. In 1957 he was the U.S. Intercollegiate Chess Champion. In 1960 he was on the winning U.S. Student Olympiad team (Lombardy, Kalme, R Weinstein, Mednis, Saidy, and Hearst). He won a gold medal as a team member and a gold medal for his individual result on board two. He was a chess master at age 15. He later gave up chess and got a Ph.D. in Mathematics. He was associate editor of Mathematical Reviews. He was a professor of mathematics at the University of California at Berkeley.

Kaminski, Marcen (1977- )

Grandmaster from Poland. His FIDE rating is 2449.

Kamsky, Gata (1974- )

Grandmaster (1990) who was born in Siberia, Gata Kamsky won the USSR Junior Championship (under 18) at the age of 12. Gata and father Rustam defected from the Soviet Union after playing in the 1989 New York International. He became a grandmaster at 16. He won the U.S. Championship in 1991 at age 17. He was one of the top 6 players in the world in the 1990s. In 1996 he was a finalist in the FIDE world chess championship after defeating Anand, Salov, Short, and Kramnik. In 1997 he lost to Karpov for the FIDE world chess championship. He entered medical school but quit and entered law school. He is awaiting his bar tests and has resumed playing chess after a layoff of 8 years when he was one of the top 10 in the world (2717 FIDE rating). In the 2005 US Chess Championship in San Diego, Kamsky was rated the highest at 2777, but ended in 9th-17th place. He won 2 games , lost none, and drew 7 games. His highest USCF rating was 2762. In 2005, he won the 127th New York State Chess Championship. In 2006, he won the World Open on tie-breaks.

D. Gurevich – Kamsky, Chicago 1989
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 d5 4.d4 e6 5.Qb3 Nbd7 6.g3 Qb6 7.Bg2 Be7 8.O-O O-O 9.Re1 Ne4 10.Nxe4 dxe4 11.Ng5? Qa5 0-1

Kamsky – Zarnicki, Buenos Aires 1993
1.c4 e6 2.Nc3 Bb4 3.e4 c5 4.f4 d6 5.Nf3 Nf6 6.Bd3 O-O 7.O-O Nc6 8.b3 Bxc3 9.dxc3 Ne8 10.f5 exf5 11.exf5 Ne5 12.Bc2 f6 13.Be4 Nc7 14.Nxe5 fxe5 15.Qh5 Qe8 16.Qh4 Qf7 17.Bg5 d5 18.cxd5 Nxd5 19.f6 g6 20.Bxd5 Qxd5 21.f7+ Rxf7 22.Rfd1 Qc6 23.Rd8+ Rf8 24.Bh6 (24...Rxd8 25.Qxd8+ Kf7 26.Rf1 Ke6?? 27.Rf6 mate) 1-0

Karaklajic, Nikola (1926- )

Serbian International Master (1955), chess trainer and journalist. He was Yugoslav champion in 1955. He was a disc jockey for Belgrade radio.

Karaklajic – Fuderer, Belgrade 1955
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 Nd7 4.Bc4 Be7 5.dxe5 Nxe5 6.Nxe5 dxe5 7.Qh5 1-0

Karff, Mona May Ratner (1914-1998)

Played in 18 U.S. Women’s championships, winning 7 times , from 1938 to 1974. She spoke 8 languages fluently and became a millionaire playing the stock market. She married her cousin, but later divorced and was romantically linked with Dr. Edward Lasker. In 1937 she played in the women’s world chess championship in Stockholm representing Palestine. She took 6th place. In the 1939 women’s world championship in Buenos Aires, she represented the United States and took 5th place.

Karff – Lugatsch, Berlin 1937
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 c5 4.Qg4 cxd4 5.Nf3 f5 6.Qg3 Nc6 7.Be2 Bd7 8.Nxd4 Nxd4 9.Bh5+ Ke7 10.Qa3 mate 1-0

Karjakin, Sergey (1990- )

Ukrainian Grandmaster. At the age of 12 years and 7 months, he was the youngest grandmaster in history. He was the world champion under 12. In 2002 he served as one of Ruslan Ponomariov’s seconds during his world championship match with Ivanchuk His name is pronounced car-yack-kin. In 2005, he won the Geller Memorial in Odessa. His FIDE rating is 2645.

Sinzhuk – Karjakin, Alushta 2000
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Nf3 c5 8.Rb1 O-O 9.Be2 Qa5 10.Bd2 Qxa2 11.O-O Qe6 12.Qc2 b6 13.d5 Qd6 14.c4 e5 15.dxe6 Bxe6 16.e5 Qc7 17.Bf4 Nc6 18.Rbd1 Rad8 19.Rd6 Nxe5 20.Nxe5 Rxd6 21.Bd3 Rd4 0-1

Karlsson, Lars (1955- )

Swedish Grandmaster (1982). His FIDE rating is 2472. In 1982, he took 11th-13th at the Las Palmas Interzonal.

Karpov, Anatoly (1951- )

The 12th World Chess Champion (1975-1985). The first world champion to win the title without playing a chess match. He got the title in 1975 when Fischer refused to defend his title. Anatoly became a Candidate Master at the age of 11, a Master at 15, an International Grandmaster at 19, and world champion at 23. In 1978 he was named Soviet Union Sportsman of the Year and was personally decorated by President Brezhnev. Karpov became World Champion before he became USSR Champion. He never scored worse than 4th place while world champion. No Soviet opponent has ever beat him outside the Soviet Union. He became the first millionaire playing chess. He is a member of the Supreme Soviet Commission for Foreign Affairs and the President of the Soviet Peace Fund. He is the first world champion to be born in Asia. He has the most complete collection of postage stamps on the topic of chess and specializes in stamps with reproductions of paintings. In 1989 a poll in the British Chess Magazine showed the Karpov was the world's most boring player, followed by Sammy Reshevsky. Karpov's diploma thesis at the Leningrad State University was entitled: "Spare time and its economic significance under Socialism." There is no mention of chess. He was FIDE champion from 1993 to 1999. He has won more chess tournaments (over 160) than anyone in the history of the game. He won the World Junior Championship in 1969. The tournament was held in an ancient debtor’s prison in Stockholm. He has opened over 50 Karpov schools of chess around the world. Karpov lost 23 games while world champion.

Hostalet – Karpov, Groningen 1968
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 O-O 5.Qc2 c5 6.a3 Bxc3+ 7.Qxc3 Nc6 8.Bd3 cxd4 9.exd4 d5 10.Ne2 dxc4 11.Bxc4 e5 12.Be3 Ne4 13.Qb3 Qa5+ 14.Kf1 Nxd4 15.Nxd4 exd4 16.f3 dxe3 17.fxe4 Qd2 (threatening 18...Qf2 mate) 0-1

Kashdan, Isaac (1905-1985)

Grandmaster (1954) who founded Chess Review in 1933. He once appeared on Groucho Marx's "You Bet Your Life" and Groucho called him "Mr. Ash Can" throughout the show. Isaac Kashdan's wife was asked to join a harem for 150 English pounds by Umar Khan at an Olympiad. He edited a chess column in the Los Angeles Times from 1955 to 1982. At the 1928 Hague Olympiad, he took the gold medal for the best score on board 1. He won the New York State championship in 1936. He won the US Open in 1947. His nickname in the 1930s was “the little Capablanca.” He worked as an insurance agent for Prudential. In the 1960s, he was the President of the California State Chess Federation. He played on five US Olympiad teams between 1928 and 1937. In 1942, he tied for 1st in the US Championship, but lost the playoff to Reshevsky. He directed the two Piatigorsky tournaments (1963 and 1968).

Kashdan – Polland, New York, 1938
1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 dxc4 4.e4 e5 5.Nf3 exd4 6.Bxc4 Bc5 7.Ne5 Qf6 8.Nxf7 dxc3 9.O-O Be6 10.Bg5 Qxg5 11.Nxg5 Bxc4 12.Qh5+ g6 13.Qh3 cxb2 14.Rad1 Nf6 15.Qc3 1-0

Kasimdzhanov, Rustam (1979- )

World FIDE champion from Uzbekistan who won the FIDE knockout in Tripoli in 2004. His FIDE rating is 2670. He has been rated as high as 2706. He won the Asian Championship in 1998. He took 2nd place in the World Junior Championship in 1999. He currently resides in Germany.

Belkin – Kasimdzhanov, Uzbekistan 1993
1.c4 e6 2.Nc3 d5 3.d4 c6 4.Nf3 Nf6 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bxf6 Qxf6 7.e3 Nd7 8.Qc2 Qd8 9.cxd5 cxd5 10.Bd3 Be7 11.O-O O-O 12.Rac1 a6 13.Rfd1 b5 14.e4 Bb7 15.exd5 b4 16.dxe6 bxc3 17.exd7 cxb2 18.Qxb2 Bxf3 19.gxf3 Bd6 20.Qb7 Qh4 21.Qxa8 Qxh2+ 22.Kf1 Qh3+ 23.Ke2 Rxa8 0-1

Kasparian, Genrikh (1910-1995)

International Grandmaster for Chess Compositions (1972). He was considered the world’s leading expert at endgame studies. He won the first Amenian championship in 1934. He won the Armenian chess championship 11 times (1934, 1938, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950, 1951, 1953, 1954, 1955, 1956) and participated in a few USSR chess championships. He took last place (18 players) in the 7th USSR Championship in 1931. In 1974 he wrote Domination in 2545 Endgame Studies.

Kasparov, Garry (1963- )

Originally named Weinstein. In 1976, he was the strongest player in the world under age 13. He became a grandmaster at 17, the youngest Soviet champion at 18 and the youngest world champion at 22 years, 210 days. In his first international tournament, Baku 1979, he exceeded the Grandmaster norm and took first place as an unrated player. His first FIDE rating was 2500. He became the World Junior Champion in 1980 and co-champion of the USSR in 1981. In 1987 he wrote his autobiography, Child of Change. In 1993 he founded the Professional Chess Association (PCA), which he said later was his biggest mistake. He was the first Soviet to do a Western commercial. In May, 1997 he lost a match with the chess computer. DEEP BLUE. In 1993 he broke away from FIDE and defeated Nigel Short for the PCA World Championship. In 2000 he lost his title to Vladimir Kramnik in the Braingames World Chess Championship, but continues to be the highest rated chess player in the world. His FIDE rating has been as high as 2849. He has been the world’s #1 rated player since 1984. In 1989 he was the first person to top 2800. From 1981 to 1991 he did not lose a single chess event. He successfully defended his world chess championship title more times than any champion. His Pepsi ad, shown in the 2002 Superbowl, was nominated for an Oscar. From 1981 to 1990, Kasparov won 15 straight tournaments in a row. After winning Linares (but losing his last game to Topalov) in 2005, he announced his retirement from chess on March 10, 2005.

Kasparov – West, Telex 1977
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nc3 e6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 Bb4 6.e5 Nd5 7.Bd2 Nxc3 8.bxc3 Bf8 9.Bd3 d6 10.Qe2 Nd7 11.Nxe6 Qb6 12.Nc7+ 1-0

Magerramov – Kasparov, Baku 1979

1,d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 c5 4.g3 cxd4 5.Nxd4 d5 6.Bg2 e5 7.Nf3 e4 8.Nd4 dxc4 9.Nc3 Bc5 10.Qa4+ Bd7 11.Qxc4 Qb6 12.Be3 Nc6 13.Nc2 Bxe3 14.Nxe3 Na5 0-1

Kass, Carmen (1978- )

In 2004 she was elected President of the Estonian Chess Federation. She happens to be a super-model. She is one of the top ten earning super-models in the world. She has been on the cover of dozens of fashion magazines in the world.

Kaufman, Larry (1947- )

International Master (1980). Winner of the American Open in 1966. He has won state championships in Virginia, Florida, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Southern California. He is the strongest Shogi player in the United States. He graduated from M.I.T. with a degree in Economics and became a successful stock broker and trader. He is the author of Chess Advantage in Black and White.

McCormick-Kaufman, Nebraska 1975
1.e4 c5 2.c3 Nf6 3.e3 Nd5 4.d4 cxd4 5.Qxd4 e6 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.Qe4 d6 8.Nbd2 Bd7 9.Bd3 dxe5 10.Bb1 f5 11.Qe2 e4 12.Nd4 Nxd4 13.cxd4 Nf4 14.Qf1 Rc8 15.Nb3 Rxc1+ 16.Nxc1 Bb4+ 17.Kd1 Ba4+ 18.b3 Qxd4+ 0-1

Kavalek, Lubomir (1943- )

Winner of an international tournament (Caracas) representing the United States without ever setting foot in the U.S. at the time. Grandmaster (1965) who won the Czech championship in 1962 at the age of 19, and won it again in 1968. He earned the International Master in early 1965 and then the Grandmaster title 7 months later. He won or tied in the US Championship in 1972, 1973, and 1978. In 1979 he dislocated his knee while playing tennis and had to withdraw from the Interzonal. He speaks 7 languages. He writes a chess column for the Washington Post. Kavalek left Czechoslovakia after the Soviet invasion ion 1968. He settled in the United States in 1970. He was inducted in the US Chess Hall of Fame in 2001.

Kavalek – Bilek, Europe 1966
1.e4 d6 2.d4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.Be3 Nd7 5.Nf3 c6 6.a4 Ngf6 7.b3 e5 8.dxe5 dxe5 9.Nd2 O-O 10.Nc4 Ne8? 11.Bc5 1-0

Keene, Raymond (1948- )

British Grandmaster (1976), author of over 100 chess books, and organizer of many international chess matches. He received the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his chess services in 1985. He was British Champion in 1971. He was the first British player to achieve a FIDE Grandmaster norm (but the second to become a British Gradmaster, after Tony Miles). He has organized three World Chess Championships. He may have written more chess books than any other chess author.

Keene – Fries Nelson, Berlin 1980
1.d4 g6 2.c4 Nf6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Nf3 Bg7 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.e4 Nb6 7.h3 O-O 8.Be3 Nc6 9.Bb5 Na5 10.Qe2 a6 11.Bd3 Nc6 12.d5 Nb4 13.Bb1 f5 14.Bxb6 cxb6 15.a3 fxe4 16.Bxe4 Bxc3+ 17.bxc3 Nxd5 18.Rd1 e6 19.c4 (19...Nf4 20.Rxd8 Nxe2 21.Rxf8+ Kxf8 22.Kxe2) 1-0

Kempelen, Farkas (1734-1804)

Inventor of the first automation, The Chess Playing Turk, in 1769. He built it for the sole purpose of entertaining and mystifying the Empress Maria Theresa of Austria. It was not a true machine but was the first “cabinet illusion.” For years he labored to improve the science of hydraulics, designing fire engines and hydraulic pumps. But nobody was interested in those. They were all interested in the Turk. Eventually, he became so annoyed by the continuous stream of visitors that he dismantled the Turk, announcing that it had been damaged and could no longer be exhibited. In 1783 Emperor Joseph II commanded him to display the Turk once again. In 1790 he built the world’s first “talking machine” (he called it a voice imitator).

Kempinski, Robert (1977- )

Grandmaster from Poland. His FIDE rating is 2619. He is the highest rated Polish player.

Kengis, Edvins (1959- )

Grandmaster from Latvia. His FIDE rating is 2534.

Kennedy, Hugh Alexander (1809-1878)

Former British army captain and leading London chess player. In 1843 he founded the Brighton Chess Club, which attracted Howard Staunton and Henry Buckle. In April 1845, he teamed up with Howard Staunton and played two telegraph games against Walker, Evans, Perigal, and Tuckett in London while they were in Portsmouth. In 1846, he lost a match to Elijah Williams (+2-4). In 1849, he lost a match to Eduard Loewe (+6-7=1). He played in the great International Tournament in London in 1851. He knocked out Carl Mayet in round 1 with two wins. In round two, he lost to Marmaduke Wyvill (+3-4=1). In round 3, he defeated James Mucklow with 4 wins. He then lost to Jozsef Szen with 1 draw and 4 losses. He finished in 6th place at the 1851 London tournament. In 1862, he lost perhaps the first international telegraphic game, against Serafino Dubois.

Loewe – Kennedy, London 1849
1.e4 c5 2.Bc4 e6 3.Nc3 Nc6 4.f4 a6 5.a4 Nge7 6.Nf3 d5 7.Ba2 b5 8.axb5 axb5 9.Nxb5 Nb4 10.Na3 dxe4 11.Ng5 Nf5 12.Qe2 Rxa3 13.bxa3 Nxc2+ 14.Kd1 Nfe3+ 15.Qxe3 Nxe3+ 16.Ke2 Qd3+ 17.Kf2 Ng4+ 18.Kg1 Ba6 0-1

Keres, Paul (1916-1975)

Estonian Grandmaster (1950). He was Estonian chess champion in 1935. In the 1930s he played in the tennis championship of Estonia. In 1938 he tied for 1st (with Fine) in the famous AVRO tournament, which earned him the right to challenge Alexander Alekhine for the world championship. He participated in German tournaments during World War II. When the Red Army liberated the country, Soviet authorities planned initially to execute Keres. Botvinnik interceded by talking to Stalin and Keres was spared. In 1953 Paul Keres became the first sportsman of the year in chess in the Soviet Union. He was Estonian Sportsman of the Year in 1959 and 1962. He never became world champion but defeated nine world champions in his career. When asked why he never became world champion, he replied: "I was unlucky, like my country." He had over 100,000 people at his funeral in Tallinn, Estonia. The National Bank of Estonia issued a 5 krooni (5 crowns) note with a portrait of Paul Keres. He is the only chess player whose portrait is on a banknote. Newly opened KGB files show that the Soviets made him throw games. It also shows that the KGB wanted to execute Keres for treason after the Soviet Union acquired Estonia. The 1948 Hague-Moscow tournament-match for the world championship had Keres losing the first 4 games to Botvinnik. Many think that Keres was forced to throw these games to save himself and his family. At one time he was professor of mathematics in Tallinn, Estonia. His nickname in chess was “great stone face.” He won over 30 major tournaments in his life.

Keres – Arlamowski, Szawno Zdroj 1950
1.e4 c6 2.Nc3 d5 3.Nf3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Qe2 Nbd7?? 6.Nd6 mate 1-0

Dvorzynski – Keres, Moscow 1956
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 d6 5.d4 b5 6.Bb3 Nxd4 7.Nxd4 exd4 8.Qxd4 c5 9.Qd5 Be6 10.Qc6+ Bd7 11.Qd5 c4 0-1

Kevitz, Alexander (1902-1981)

Manhattan Chess Club Champion in 1927, 1928-29, and 1935-36.

Keyser, Charles ( -1970)

Former Treasurer and President of the New Jersey Chess Association who suffered a heart attack and died while playing chess at the Montclair Chess Club in New Jersey.

Khachiyan, Melikset (1970- )

International Master (1995) and Southern California Champion who made his third and final GM norm in Los Angeles in 2005. He is a former member of the Armenian national chess team (1996, 1997). He came to the United States in 2001. He won the American Open in 2001. He started playing chess at the age of eight. At the age of 10 he was the Baku Junior Champion. He was a master at the age of 12. He was coached by former world champion Tigran Petrosian. He has coached three Junior World Champions: Almira Skripchenko (1992), Elina Danielian (1992 and 1993), and Levon Aronian (1994-1996).

Khalifman, Alexander (1966- )

Russian Grandmaster (1990) who became the 1999 FIDE World Champion. In 1999 he defeated Vladimir Akopian in Las Vegas for the title. Both players reached the finals after all other of the 100 players were eliminated in the knockout event. Khalifman became the 14th world chess champion and held it for one year. His check for the world championship bounced when he tried to cash it. In 2000, Anand won the FIDE world championship. In 1982 he was the USSR youth champion. In 1984 he won the USSR championship. In 1990 he won the New York Open. In 1996, he won the Russian championship. He runs the St. Petersburg Chess School.

Khalifman – Wahls, Groningen 1990
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.e5 d5 6.Bb5 Ne4 7.Nxd4 Bc5 8.O-O O-O 9.Bxc6 bxc6 10.Nxc6 Qh4 11.Be3 Bxe3 12.fxe3 Qg5 13.Rf4 Bb7 14.Qxd5 Rad8 15.Qxe4 Rd1+ 16.Kf2 Bxc6 17.Qxc6 Qxe5 18.Qc3 Qb5 19.Na3 1-0

Kharitonov, Andrei (1959- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2578. He won the championship of Moscow in 2002.

Kharlov, Andrei (1968- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His peak Elo rating is 2637. He tied for 1st place in the 1990 Russian championship. He has been a Grandmaster since 1992.

Khasin, Abram (1923- )

During World War II, Khasin lost both legs fighting in the Battle of Stalingrad. He played in five USSR Championships from 1956 to 1965. He became an IM in 1964 and Grandmaster of Correspondence Chess in 1973.

Khasin, Alexander (1951- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2516.

Khenkin, Igor (1968- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2610.

Kholmov, Ratmir (1925- )

Soviet Grandmaster (1960) and Lithuanian champion 10 times. He was once suspended for a year from tournament play because of conduct unbecoming a chess master (excessive drinking). His nickname by Soviet players was Central Defender. He tied for 1st place (with Spassky and Stein) in the 1963 USSR Chess Championship. He was never allowed to play in Western Europe, the USA, or Canada for political reasons.

Pedersen – Kholmov, Katowice 1993
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Nxd4 Bc5 5.Be3 Qf6 6.c3 Nge7 7.Bc4 b6 8.O-O Bb7 9.b4 Nxd4 10.cxd4 Bxb4 11.Qb3 Ba5 12.f3 O-O 13.a4 d5 14.Bd3 c5 15.e5 Qe6 16.dxc5 Qxe5 17.Bc1 bxc5 18.Qxb7 Qd4+ (19.Kh1 Qxd3 20.Rg1 Ng6 or 20...Rfe8) 0-1

Kieseritzky, Lionel (1806-1853)

Former mathematics teacher in Estonia who became a chess regular at the Cafe de la Regence in Paris and was of International Master strength. He gave chess lessons at the Cafe for 5 francs an hour. He was not well liked. He died penniless at a charity hospital for the insane and was buried in a pauper’s grave. Only one person came to his funeral – a waiter at the Cafe.

Schulten – Kieseritzky, Paris 1847
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Bc4 Qh4+ 4.Kf1 b5 5.Bxb5 Nf6 6.Nc3 Ng4 7.Nh3 Nc6 8.Nd5 Nd4 9.Nxc7+ Kd8 10.Nxa8 f3 11.d3 f6 12.Bc4 d5 13.Bxd5 Bd6 14.Qe1 fxg2+ 15.Kxg2 Qxh3+ 16.Kxh3 Ne3+ 17.Kh4 Nf3+ 18.Kh5 Bg4 mate 0-1

Kindermann, Stefan (1959- )

Grandmaster (1988) from Germany who now lives in Austria. His FIDE rating is 2546.

King's leap

In the 15th century the King was allowed to leap to any 3rd square on its first move, provided it did not leap out of or over check. The King's leap survived until the 17th century in England and France. It survived in Spain and Portugal up to 1750. It survived until the 19th century in Iceland. From this move, castling developed.

King, Daniel (1963- )

English Grandmaster (1989). His FIDE rating is 2526.

Kirov Ivanov, Nino (1945- )

Bulgarian Grandmaster (1975). He was Bulgarian champion in 1973 and 1978.

Kishnev, Sergey (1956- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2485.

Klaric, Zlatko (1956- )

Grandmaster (1983) from Croatia. His FIDE rating is 2418.

Klinger, Josef (1967- )

Austrian Grandmaster (1988). In 1985, he won the Austrian championship. In 1985, he took 3rd in the World Junior Championship. His FIDE rating is 2440. He has become a professional poker player.

Kmoch, Hans (1894-1973)

Chess author and International Master (1950) and International Judge (1951). He was the referee in the Alekhine-Euwe World Championship match in 1935. Euwe chose him as his second in the 1937 rematch. He authored Pawn Power in Chess and about a dozen other chess books. He was the one that coined the D. Byrne-Fischer game in 1956 “the game of the century”. He was a Latin scholar and editor of a literary magazine. He died at the age of 76.

Kmoch – NN, Vienna 1934
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nge7 4.O-O g6 5.d4 Bg7 6.dxe5 Nxe5 7.Nxe5 Bxe5 8.Bh6 Bxb2 9.Nd2 c6 10.Rb1 Bd4 11.Nc4 Bc5 12.Qd4 1-0

Knaak, Rainer (1953- )

German Grandmaster (1975) who was East German champion in 1973, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1983, and 1984.

Knaak – Shiroki, Czechoslovakia 1972
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Nf3 Bg7 5.Bg5 Ne4 6.cxd5 Nxg5 7.Nxg5 e6 8.Qa4+ Bd7 9.Qb3 Qxg5 10.Qxb7 O-O 11.Qxa8 Nc6 12.h4 Qg4 13.Qb7 Rb8 14.dxc6 (14...Rxv7 15.cxb7 and 16.b8=Q) 1-0

Knezevic, Milorad (1936- )

Serbia/Montenegro Grandmaster (1976).

Knight’s tour

The “Knight’s Tour” is an ancient chess puzzle in which the object is to move a knight, starting from any square on a chess board, to every other square, landing on each square only once. The Knight’s Tour problem fascinated the mathematician Leonhard Euler, who solved it mathematically in 1759. He was the first to write a mathematical paper on the knight’s tour. In 1817 Charles Babbage wrote about the knight’s tour in the Journal of Science and the Arts in London. The number of possibilities of a knight's tour is over 122 million.

Knoppert, Erik (1959- )

On September 13-16, 1985, Erkc Knoppert, a FIDE chess master from the Netherlands, played 500 games of 10-minute chess in 68 hours. He score 82.6% against an average 2000 rating of his opponents.

Kobalija, Mikhail

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2573.

Kochyev, Alexander (1956- )

Russian Grandmaster (1977). He was European Junior Champion in 1975/76. His FIDE rating is 2417.

Kogan, Boris (1940-1993)

International Master (1981). Soviet Junior Champion in 1956 and 1957. He was a full time chess teacher in the Soviet Union before emigrating and coming to the United States in 1981. He played in the U.S. Championship three times. He was Georgia, USA champion seven years in a row (1980-1986) and won it 8 times.

Kolev, Atanas (1967- )

Grandmaster from Bulgaria. His FIDE rating is 2523.

Kolisch, Ignatz (1837-1889)

In his early years he was the private secretary of the Russian Prince Urusov. He later became a wandering chess professional and was one of the top 4 chess players in the world in the 1860s. In 1867, he won at Paris, ahead of Steinitz. He moved to Vienna and met Albert Rothschild in 1868. He became involved in banking and became a millionaire and chess patron, organizing and sponsoring many chess tournaments in the 1870s and 1880s. In 1881 he was made a baron of the Austrian Empire. He died at the age of 52.

Geake – Kolisch, Cambridge 1860
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Nc3 Bc5 5.O-O d6 6.d3 Bg4 7.Bxf7+? (7.Na4) 7...Kxf7 8.Ng5+ Ke8 10.Nf3 Nd4 11.Bg5 Qd7 12.Nd5 Nxd5 13.exd5 Bxf3 14.gxf3 Qh3 (threatening 15...Nxf3+) 0-1

Koltanowski, George (1903-2000)

Chess editor for the San Francisco Chronicle for 52 years and author of over 19,000 chess columns. He moved to San Francisco after World War II. In 1949 he helped in the formation of the California State Chess Federation. He was an International Master (1950), honorary International Grandmaster (1988), International Arbiter (1960), and past President of the United States Chess Federation (1975-1978). In 1937 he played 34 opponents simultaneously, blindfolded, winning 24 games and drawing 10. In 1949 he played 271 simultaneous games in an exhibition. In 1960 he played 56 consecutive blindfold games in a row, winning 50 and drawing 6 during an event held in San Francisco, He was well known for his blindfold knight’s tour. He won the Belgian Championship 4 times (1923, 1927, 1930, and 1936) and was a founding member of FIDE in 1924. He directed the U.S. Open 16 times. He was considered the greatest chess showman and promoter that chess has ever known. He introduced the Swiss System of pairings to national events when he directed the 1947 US Open in Corpus Christi, Texas using the Swiss System instead of a round robin. Many of Koltanowski’s relatives died in the Holocaust, but he was in Guatemala promoting chess when World War II broke out. The United States Consul in Cuba saw Koltanowski giving a chess exhibition in Havana in 1940 and granted him a US visa. He authored over 20 chess books in four languages. He directed the US Open 20 times. He died at the age of 96. He learned chess at the age of 14.

Koltanowski –Vogel, San Mateo 1968
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 Bg4 4.dxe5 Bxf3 5.Qxf3 dxe5 6.Bc4 Nf6 7.Qb3 b6 8.Bxf7+ Kd7 9.Qe6 mate 1-0

Koltanowski – Dunkelblum,Antwerp 1923
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Bf5 5.Bd3 Qxd4 6.Nf3 Qd8 7.Qe2 Nf6 8.Nxf6+ gxf6 9.Bxf5 Qa5+ 10.Bd2 Qxf5 11.O-O-O Qe6 12.Qd3 Qxa2 13.Qd8+ Kxd8 14.Ba5+ Kc8 15.Rd8 mate 1-0

Komarov, Dimitri (1968- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2521.

Komliakov, Victor (1960- )

Grandmaster from Moldova. His FIDE rating is 2445.

Konig, Imre (1901-1992)

International Master (1951). He was born in Hungary and represented Yugoslavia in the Chess Olympiads in 1931, 1935, and 1936. He later lived in France, England, and the United States. He wrote Chess from Morphy to Botvinnik in 1950.

Konstantinopolsky, Alexander (1910-1990)

Soviet International Master (1950) and Honorary Grandmaster (1983) and winner of the first USSR Correspondence Championship (1951). He was one of the leading trainers in the USSR during the 1950s and 1960s. He played in the Soviet championship 6 times and took 2nd place in 1937.

Kopec, Danny (1954- )

American International Master (1985) and one of the world’s foremost authorities on artificial intelligence and its application to chess. He holds a Ph.D. in Machine Intelligence and is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer and Information Systems at Brooklyn College. He was Scottish Champion in 1980-81.

Kopec – Winston, Columbus 1972
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 f5 4.Nc3 Nf6 5.d4 exd4 6.Nxd4 fxe4 7.O-O Bb4 8.Nd5 O-O 9.Bg5 Be7 10.Nf5 Kh8 11.Bxc6 Nxd5 12.Nxe7 Nxe7 13.Bxe4 Qe8 14.Re1 c6? (14...h6) 15.Bd3 Rf7 16.Qh5 (16...g6 17.Bxg6; 16...h6 17.Bg6; 16...Qg8 17.Bxe7) 1-0

Korchnoi, Viktor (1931- )

Grandmaster (1956) and four times Soviet champion (1960, 1962, 1964, 1970). He was the Dutch champion in 1977 and the Swiss champion in 1982, 1984, and 1985. He played on six of the USSR's Olympic teams. In the 1970 Chess Olympiad in Skopje, Yugoslavia, Victor overslept and missed his round against Spain lost be default. The round started at 3 pm. He defected to the West in July 1976, after a tie for 1st place (with Tony Miles) at a tournament in Amsterdam (IBM 1976). Victor Korchnoi's son, Igor, was sent to a Siberian labor camp for 30 months for refusing military service. In 1987 he won the Zabreb Interzonal Tournament (11/16). In 1991 Korchnoi was granted Swiss citizenship after 14 years of residency. He has appeared in eight Candidates Matches. During his world championship match with Karpov, he claimed that he was “hypnotized” by KGB agents to play badly. In 1999, at the age of 68, he took first place at an international tournament in St. Petersburg. After his defection in 1976, it wasn’t until 1984 that a Soviet player was allowed to play a games against Korchnoi. The first Soviet player to play Korchnoi in a tournament was Alexander Beliavasky, at Wijk aan Zee in 1984.

Korchnoi – Mestrovic, Sarajevo 1969
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e4 e5 4.Nf3 exd4 5.Bxc4 Bb4+ 6.Nbd2 Nc6 7.O-O Nh6 8.Nb3 Bg4 9.Bd5 Ne5 10.Qxd4 Nxf3+ 11.gxf3 Bxf3 12.Bxh6 Qd7 13.Qe5+ (13...Qe7 14.Bxf7+ Kxf7 15.Qxg7+ Ke6 16.Nd4+ Kd7 17.Qxe7+ and 18.Nxf3) 1-0

Korn, Walter (1908-1997)

Editor of Modern Chess Openings and chess contributor to chess publications for 50 years. He was the first FIDE International Judge for Chess Endgame Compositions in North America. He fled Czechoslovakia during World War II. After the war he directed the U.N. Relief and Rehabilitation Administration, helping to relocate concentration camp survivors. He later immigrated to the United States in 1950.

Korneev, Oleg (1969- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2594.

Kosashvili, Yona (1970- )

Grandmaster from Israel and medical doctor. In 1997, he won the 12th AEGON human vs. computer tournament in the Netherlands. In 1999, he married to Sofia Polgar.

Koshnitsky, Grigory (Garry) (1907-1999)

Born in Russia and moved to Australia in 1926. He was Australian champion from 1932 to 1934 and from 1939 to 1945. During World War II, he was an anti-tank gunner. He died at the age of 91. In 1966 he won the championship of South Australia. His wife Evelyn took the women’s title.

Kosic, Dragan (1970- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2489.

Kosten, Anthony (1958- )

Grandmaster now living in France. His FIDE rating is 2522.

Kosteniuk, Alexandra (1984- )

She became a Woman Grandmaster at age 14 and International Master at age 16. She became an International Grandmaster (WGM) for women in 1998. She is a former world women’s vice-champion.

Kostic, Borislav (1887-1963)

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1950). He won the Baltic Championship in 1913. He won the US (Western) Championship in 1916. He won the Romanian Championship in 1934. He won the Yugoslav championship in 1935 (with Pirc) and 1938. In 1916, he played 30 games blindfolded simultaneously.

Kotov, Alexander (1913-1981)

Russian Grandmaster (1950) who was awarded the Order of Lenin for an important invention relating to mortar during World War II. He was Moscow champion in 1941. He was joint USSR champion (with Bronstein) in 1948. He was a Candidate in 1950 and 1953. He played in 9 USSR Championships. He wrote Think Like a Grandmaster in 1971.

Kotov – Kalmanok, Moscow 1936
1.d4 e6 2.e4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 dxe4 5.Nxe4 Be7 6.Bxf6 gxf6 7.Nf3 Nd7 8.Bc4 c6 9.Qd2 b6 10.Qh6 Bf8 11.Qf4 Bb7 12.O-O-O h5 13.Kb1 Be7 14.Qg3 Nf8 15.Rhe1 f5 16.d5 cxd5 17.Bb5+ Nd7 18.Ne5 Qc7 19.Bxd7+ Kd8 20.Qg7 Rf8 21.Ng5 Qb8 22.Bxe6 1-0

B. Gurgenidze – Kotov, USSR 1954
1.e4 c5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Nfe2 Nf6 4.g3 d5 5.exd5 Nd4 6.Bg2 Bg4 7.d3 Nxd5 8.Bxd5? (8.Qd2) 8...Qxd5 9.f3 Qxf3 10.Rf1 Qg2 11.Bd2 Nf3+ 12.Rxf3 Qxf3 13.Ne4 Qh1+ (14.Kf2 Qxh2+ 15.Ke1 f5 wins) 0-1

Kotronias, Vasilios (1964- )

Grandmaster from Greece. His FIDE rating is 2587.

Kouatly, Bachar (1958- )

French Grandmaster (1989). He is the first native Frenchman to be awarded the GM title. He was joint French Champion in 1979. He took last place at the 1982 Toluca Interzonal with 2 wins, 1 draw, and 10 losses. His FIDE rating is 2475.

Kovacevic, Vlatko (1942- )

Croatian GM (1976) and mathematics teacher. His FIDE rating is 2512.

Fischer – Kovacevic, Rovinj-Zagreb 1970
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.a3 Bxc3+ 5.bxc3 dxe4 6.Qg4 Nf6 7.Qxg7 Rg8 8.Qh6 Nbd7 9.Ne2 b6 10.Bg5 Qe7 11.Qh4 Bb7 12.Ng3 h6 13.Bd2 O-O-O 14.Be2 Nf8 15.O-O Ng6 16.Qxh6 Rh8 17.Qg5 Rdg8 18.f3 e3 19.Bxe3 Nf8 20.Qb5 Nd5 21.Kf2 a6 22.Qd3 Rxh2 23.Rh1 Qh4 24.Rxh2 Qxh2 25.Nf1 Rxg2+ 26.Ke1 Qh4+ 27.Kd2 Ng6 28.Re1 Nfg4 29.Bxf4 Nxf4 30.Qe3 Rf2 0-1

Kovalev, Andrei (1961- )

Grandmaster from Belarus. His FIDE rating is 2548.

Kozul, Zdenko (1966- )

Croatian Grandmaster (1989). His FIDE rating is 2585. In 1982, he became world under-16 champion. In 1989 and 1990 he won the championship of Yugoslavia. He has led the Croatina team on five Olympiads.

Kraidman, Yair (1932- )

Israeli Grandmaster (1976). He works in the ministry of finance as an accountant. His FIDE rating is 2320.

Kramer, George (1929- )

U.S. Senior Master. In 1945, he won the New York State Chess Championship. In 1949, he won the U.S. Speed Championship.

Kramnik, Vladimir (1975- )

Russian Grandmaster (1992) and world champion who defeated Garry Kasparov in 2000 in the Brain Games World Championship in London. This was the 14th World Chess Championship. This was the first occasion in world championship history that the defending champion was not able to win a single game. Kramnik won 2 games and drew 10. He was world youth champion under 18 in 1991. He was the winner of the first “Intel Speed Chess Grand Prix” in 1994. He won the Chess Oscar in 2000. He drew a chess match in 2002 with the Deep Fritz chess program in Bahrain and collected $800,000 for his efforts.

Timman – Kramnik, Hoogovens 1999
1.Nf3 d5 2.g3 Bg4 3.Bg2 Nd7 4.c4 e6 5.b3 Ngf6 6.Bb2 c6 7.O-O Bd6 8.d4 O-O 9.Nbd2 a5 10.Ne5 Bh5 11.Re1 a4 12.bxa4 Qa5 13.Qb3 Qxd2 14.Bc3 Qh6 15.Qxb7 Rab8 16.Qxc6 Rb6 17.cxd5 exd5 (18.Qxd7 Nxd7 19.Nxd7 Rc6 20.Nxf8 Rxc3) 0-1

Krasenkow, Michal (1963- )

Polish Grandmaster (1989). His peak FIDE rating is 2702, number 10 in the world.

Kreiman, Boris (1976- )

A refugee from Russia who gained a green card based on his chess accomplishments by the U.S. government in 1991. US Junior champion (1993) and former recipient of the Samford Scholarship, awarded to the best young player in the United States.. Tied for 3rd place in the 2002 US Championship and gaining his last norm for Grandmaster.

Krejcik, Josef (1885-1957)

Viennese chess author, player, and journalist. In 1910, he game a 25-game simultaneous display at Linz and lost every game.

Kritz, Leonid (1984- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2544.

Krogius, Nikolai (1930- )

Russian Grandmaster (1964) and a sports psychologist. He served as a second to Boris Spassky. He was president of the USSR Chess Federation. His FIDE rating is 2485. He captained the Soviet tem in the 1970 USSR vs Rest of the World match. In 1976, he wrote Psychology in Chess.

Kruppa, Yuri (1964- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2525.

Krupski, Jan (1799-1856)

Author of, Chess Strategy, the first Polish textbook on chess.

Krush, Irina (1983- )

Participated in the 1995 U.S. Women’s Championship at age 11. This is the youngest player ever to compete in a non-age restricted national chess championship. At the age of 9, she beat a master, the youngest ever to beat a master in rated play. She took the bronze medal in the 1998 World Girls’ Championship, held in India. She won the U.S. Women’s Championship in 1998 at the age of 14. She was the Gold Medallist in the 1998 Pan-American Youth Championships in Brazil with a perfect 7-0 score. She tied for top woman in the 2003 U.S. Chess Championship, but lost in the playoff to Anna Hahn.

Krylenko, Nikolai (1885-1938)

Chess enthusiast responsible for persuading the Soviet government o support chess. He was Commissar for War in the first Bolshevik government, then Commander-in-Chief of the Russian armed forces, chief prosecutor for the revolutionary tribunals, and later Commissar for Justice for the USSR. His chess title was Chairman of the Chess Section of the Supreme Council for Physical Culture of the Russian Federal Republic, and later, Secretary of the Soviet Chess Federation. In 1937 he was arrested and charged with retarding the development of chess, cutting it off from the social and political life of the Soviet Union. He was ordered executed by Stalin as an enemy of the people.

Kubbel, Avrid (1889-1938)

Chess composer and player. He sent some of his chess compositions to the foreign press outside of the USSR in 1938. He was arrested by the secret police because they thought he was sending out cryptic state secrets. He later died of nephritis (inflammation of the kidney).

Kubbel, Leonid (1891-1942)

One of the greatest Russian chess composers. He composed over 300 endgame studies and 2,784 chess studies and problems overall. He died during the siege of Leningrad.

Kubbel, Yevgeny (1893-1942)

Chess composer and youngest brother of Avrid and Karl Kubbel. He died during the siege of Leningrad.

Kuczynski, Robert (1966- )

Grandmaster from Poland. His FIDE rating is 2485.

Kudrin, Sergey (1959- )

Grandmaster (1984) who has won the National Open 7 times, the New York Open twice, and the North American Open twice. He has a B.A. in computer science and an M.B.A. in finance. Kudrin grew up in Siberia.

Kudrin – Jukic, Graz 1987
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 5.Bd3 Nf6 6.O-O Qc7 7.Qe2 d6 8.Nc3 Be7 9.Kh1 O-O 10.f4 b5 11.e5 Ne8 12.Bd2 Nd7 13.Qe4 g6 14.Qxa8 Bb7 15.Ncxb5 axb5 16.Qa5 1-0

Kulaots, Kaido (1976- )

Grandmaster from Estonia. His FIDE rating is 2570.

Kuligowski, Adam (1955- )

Polish Grandmaster (1980). His FIDE rating is 2430. He was Polish champion in 1978.

Kunte, Abhijit (1977- )

In 2000, he won the championship of India. In 2003, he won the Smith & Williamson British Championship.

Kupchik, Abraham (1892-1970)

Former U.S. Open champion (1925), New York State champion twice (1915, 1919), and winner of the Manhattan Chess Club at least 15 times. In 1923, he tied with Frank Marshall in the 9th American Chess Congress, held in Lake Hopatcong, New York. He played in the U.S. chess championship in 1936, 1938, and 1940.

J. Corzo – Kupchik, Havana 1913
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.c3 d5 4.Qa4 Qd6 5.Bb5 Bd7 6.exd5 Qxd5 7.O-O O-O-O 8.Bc4 Qd6 9.Ng5 Nh6 10.d3 Qg6 11.Be3 Be7 12.Ne4 f5 13.Nc5 f4 14.Nxd7 Rxd7 15.Bd2 f3 16.g3 Qg4 17.Qd1 Rf8 18.Be6 Qxe6 0-1

Kupreichik, Viktor (1949- )

Belorussian Grandmaster (1980) from Minsk. He took last place in the 1969, 1974, and 1976 USSR championships.

Razuvev – Kupreichik, Erevan 1970
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Nf3 f5 4.d4 e4 5.Bg5 Nf6 6.d5 exf3 7.dxc6 fxg2 8.cxd7+ Nxd7 9.Bxd8 gxh1=Q 0-1

Kurajica, Bojan (1947- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1974). Winner of the 1965 World Junior Championship. The title is an automatic award to the International Master title, yet he was not even a master. He thus became an International Master without ever being a master.

Kurajica – Nikolic, Yugoslavia 1984
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e3 e5 4.Bxc4 exd4 5.exd4 Nf6 6.Nc3 Be7 7.Nf3 O-O 8.O-O Nc6 9.h3 Na5 10.Bd3 Be6 11.Re1 Bc4 12.Bxc4 Nxc4 13.Qe2 1-0

Kushnir, Alla (1941- )

One of the top women’s chess players in the 1960s and 1970s. At one time she was the second-best woman in the world (behind Gprindashvili). She left the Soviet Union and settle in Israel in 1973. She was awarded the Women’s Grandmaster title in 1976. She was Women’s World Championship Challenger in 1965, 1969, and 1972. She was USSR Women’s Champion in 1970.

Kutirov, Rolando (1962- )

Grandmaster from Macedonia. His FIDE rating is 2375.

Kuzmin, Alexei (1963- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2539.

Kuzmin, Gennady (1946- )

Russian Grandmaster (1973). He played in 9 USSR championships. He took 2nd place in 1973.

Skatchkov – Kuzmin, Pardubice 1995
1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Nf3 c6 5.Qxd4 d5 6.exd5 cxd5 7.Bb5+ Nc6 8.Bg5 Be7 9.O-O O-O 10.Qh4 h6 11.Bd3 hxg5 12.Nxg5 g6 13.Qh6 Ne5 14.Nc3 Neg4 15.Qh4 Nh5 16.f4 Kg7 17.h3 Bc5+ 18.Kh1 Rh8 19.f5 Qxg5! (20.Qxg5 Ng3 mate) 0-1

Kveinys, Aloyzas (1962- )

Grandmaster from Lithuania. His FIDE rating is 2510.

Lalic, Bogdan (1964- )

Croatian Grandmaster (1988). He is now playing in England and married to Susan Arkell Lalic.

Landa, Konstantin (1972- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2609.

Lane Hickey, Lisa (1938- )

Born in Philadelphia. Former U.S. women's champion (1959-62, 1966). In 1960 she appeared on "What's My Line" and was featured in : Look magazine. In 1961, she was on the cover of Sports Illustrated. In 1961, she took 12th-14th place at the Women’s Candidates Tournament in Vrnjacka Banja. She played four games in the Hastings Reserve tournament in 1961-62, then withdrew after one draw, two losses, and an adjourned game. She said she could not concentrate because she was "homesick and in love." In 1963 she opened up her own chess club, Queen’s Pawn Chess Emporium, in New York. In 1964, she took 12th place at the Women’s Candidates Tournament in Sukhumi. In 1966, she tied for 1st place with Gisela Gresser in the U.S. Women’s Chess Championship. She married Neil Hickey, editor-at-large of the Columbia Journalism Review, who was a friend of Bobby Fischer and assisted Bobby Fischer in some chess articles. Lisa owns a natural food business, Amber Waves of Grain, in New York.

Lange, Max (1832-1899)

German chess player and inventor of the helpmate in 1865 and the Max Lange Attack (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.d4 exd4 4.O-O Bc5 5.e5) in 1854. From 1858 to 1864, he was the editor of Deutsche Schachzeitung, the oldest chess magazine still around.

Lange – Mayet, Berlin 1853
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.O-O d6 5.b4 Nxb4 6.c3 Nc6 7.d4 exd4 8.cxd4 Bb6 9.h3 Na5 10.Bd3 d5 11.exd5 Qxd5 12.Nc3 Qh5 13.Re1+ Kd8 14.Ng5! Qxd1 15.Nxf7+ Kd7 16.Bf5+ Kc6 17.Nd8+ Kd6 18.Bf4 mate 1-0

Lanka, Zigurds (1960- )

Grandmaster from Latvia. His FIDE rating is 2531.

Larsen, Bent (1935- )

Danish Grandmaster (1956) who now lives in Buenos Aires with his Argentinean wife. In 1954 at the age of 19, he won the Danish championship and became an International Master. Larsen won the Danish championship every time he entered for the next 10 years. In 1956 he played first board of the Danish team at the chess Olympiad in Moscow and got the Gold medal for his +11 =6 –1 on board one. In 1966 when Larsen beat Geller in a match, it was the first time in a match that a Soviet Grandmaster had ever lost to a foreigner. Bent Larsen was the first GM to lose to a computer in a tournament competition, 1988. To supplement his income, he translates detective stories into Danish. In 1953 Larsen labored all night on an adjourned game to find a winning line. Then he tried to get a few hours sleep. He lost the game because he had overslept and failed to appear on time. He has won the Interzonal 3 times (1964 in Amsterdam, 1967 in Sousse, and 1976 in Biel) and is the only player to do this. In 1967 he was awarded the Chess Oscar as player of the year. In 1988 Larsen lost a game to Deep Thought, becoming the first Grandmaster to be defeated by a computer in tournament play. The opening 1.b3 is sometimes called Larsen’s Opening. His nickname is “The Great Dane.” He won the Canadian Open and the U.S. Open in 1968 and 1970. He won the second Annual World Open in 1974.

Sursock – Larsen, Siegen 1970
1.d4 e6 2.e4 c5 3.Nf3 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Bc4 Nf6 7.Bg5 Qb6 8.Bxf6 gxf6 9.Ndb5 Ne5 10.Bb3 Rg8 11.O-O a6 12.Nd4? Qxd4! (13.Qxd4 Nf3+ and 14...Nxd4) 0-1

Las Palmas 1996

Strongest chess tournament ever held. This was a category 21 event with an average rating of 2756.

The event included the top 6 players in the world: Garry Kasparov (2785), Anatoly Karpov (2775), Vladimir Kramnik (2765), Veselin Topalov (2750), Viswanathan Anand (2735), and Vassily Ivanchuk (2730). The SuperTorneo was held in Las Palmas in the Gran Canary Islands of Spain in December, 1996. The event was won by Kasparov with 3 wins and 7 draws. Anand took 2nd place. Karpov tied for last place with Ivanchuk. Four of the six players have been world champions.

Lasa, Tassilo von Heydebrand und der (1818-1899)

Prussian diplomat (part of the Diplomatic Service until 1864), baron, and ambassador who never played in a tournament or match. Yet, in offhand games he beat some of the world’s best players, including Staunton, Anderssen, and Lowenthal. He may have been the second strongest chess player in the world from 1845 to 1855. In 1843 he completed the Handbuch des Schachspiels, the first complete review of openings in any language. This book was begun by Bilguer. He helped begin the German chess magazine Deutsche Schachzeitung. In the 1850s he proposed that each player’s time should be limited by way of separate clocks. He had one of the largest chess libraries in the world. His chess library is now housed in Kornik Caslte, near Poznan, Romania.

Von der Lasa – Bledow, 1839
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.Bc4 Bg7 5.d4 Qe7 6.O-O h6 7.Nc3 c6 8.e5 Qb4 9.Ne4 Bf8 10.Qe2 g4 11.Nd6+ Bxd6 12.exd6 Kd8 13.Ne5 Rh7 14.c3 f3 15.Qe4 Nf6 16.Qxh7 Nxh7 17.Nxf7+ 1-0

Lasker, Berthold (1860-1928)

Older brother of Emanuel Lasker who taught Emanuel how to play when Emanuel was 11 years old. He was known as a chess hustler in Berlin in the early 1880s. As a medical doctor who lived in Berlin, he saved Emanuel Lasker’s life in 1894 when Emanuel Lasker had gastric fever and a broken blood vessel while living in England. Berthold married Else Schuler (1869-1945), a famous poet, writer, and artist, in 1894. She later divorced him in 1903. In 1902 he won the New York State chess championship.

Lasker, Edward (1885-1981)

Became an International Master at the age of 75. He was an International Master in 1913, a title given to him by the German Chess Federation. Edward Lasker won the championship of Paris in 1912, the London championship in 1914, the New York City championship in 1915, and the championship of Chicago in 1916. He won the U.S. Open five times (1916, 1917, 1919, 1920, 1921). In 1923 he played a match (and lost by one point) with Frank Marshall for the U.S. Championship. During that match, one of the spectators had a heart attack and died. In the 1940s he founded and became president of the Association of American Chess Masters (AACM). His mother and brother died in Nazi Germany. Edward Lasker had degrees (but no Ph.D.) in mechanical and electrical engineering. He invented and patented a breast pump to secure mother's milk. He was a safety engineer for Sears Roebuck. At the age of 90 he played in a telex match between New York and London. He was a seventh cousin to Emanuel Lasker (some sources say they were not related). He learned chess at the age of six from his father. He was a Go player and founded the American Go Association in 1915. He died at the age of 95.

Ed Lasker – George Thomas, London 1912
1.d4 f5 2.e4 fxe4 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 e6 5.Nxe4 Be7 6.Bxf6 Bxf6 7.Nf3 b6 8.Ne5 O-O 9.Bd3 Bb7 10.Qh5 Qe7 11.Qxh7+ Kxh7 12.Nxf6+ Kh6 13.Neg4+ Kg5 14.h4+ Kf4 15.g3+ Kf3 16.Be2+ Kg2 17.Rh2+ Kg1 18.Kd2 mate 1-0

Lasker, Emanuel (1868-1941)

Second world chess champion, from 1894 to 1921, who played in 8 world championship matches. Emanuel Lasker took first place at Breslau in 1889 by accident. Another competitor, needing a draw or win for first place, had a won adjourned game. After adjournment he lost. It was later discovered that one of his pawns was knocked off the board between sealing and resumption of the game, which would have given him the winning advantage. As a result Lasker, who was considering giving up chess, won the event and the title of national master. Five years later he was world champion. He once tried to breed pigeons for poultry shows. He tried for many months and failed. He learned later that all the pigeons were male. Between 1901 and 1914 he played in only three tournaments. He published Lasker’s Chess Magazine from 1904 to 1906. In 1908 he married at the age of 48 and became husband, father, and grandfather all at once. His wife, a few years older than he, was already a grandmother. He tried to have the tournament rules changes for the older player at the international level. He proposed that play should be stopped after 2 hours for a half hour adjournment. His theory was that gentle exercises or turning to other thoughts for awhile would reinvigorate the older brain. During World War I he invested his life savings in German war bonds and lost it all. He wrote a book declaring that Germany had to win World War I if civilization was to be saved. His Ph.D. dissertation of 1902 on ideal numbers became a cornerstone of 20th century algebra. He believed that one of his opponents, Tarrasch, had hypnotic powers and wanted to play him in a separate room. In 1933 the Hitler regime confiscated his Berlin apartment, his farm at Thyrow, and all of his savings. Destitute, he moved to England and took up chess again to earn a living. He was invited to Moscow for an international tournament (he took 6th place at the age of 68) and was encouraged to stay on Moscow after the event. He was invited to become a member of the Moscow Academy of Science, which he accepted, and took permanent residence in Moscow. In October, 1937 he moved to Manhattan, New York.

Burn – Emanuel Lasker, Hastings 1895
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 c5 5.e3 Nc6 6.cxd5 exd5 7.Bd3 a6 8.dxc5 Bxc5 9.O-O O-O 10.Bd2 Re8 11.Rc1 Ba7 12.Ne2 Bg4 13.Bc3 Ne4 14.Ng3 Nxf2 15.Rxf2 Rxe3 16.Nf5 Rxf3 17.gxf3 Bxf5 18.Bxf5 Qg5+ 19.Bg4 h5 20.Qd2 Be3 0-1

Last Place

In 1851, at the first International Chess Tournament, Eduard Loewe, M. Brodie, E.S. Kennedy, Samuel Newham, and Carl Mayet all got knocked out without a single win in 2 games. In 1857, at the 1st American Chess Congress, James Thompson and Samuel Calthrop got knocked out without a single win in 3 games. In 1862, at the 1st British Chess Federation Congress, James Robey took last place (+2-11=0). In 1867, at the Dundee International, Walter Spens took last place (+0-8=1). In 1868, at the 4th Counties Chess Association in York, W. Ball took last place (+0-9=0). In 1869, at the 2nd British Chess Association, Cuthbertson took last place (+0-10=0). In 1871, at the 2nd American Chess Congress in Cleveland, William Houghton took last place (+0-14=0). In 1873, at the 1st Netherlands Chess Federation, L. Simons took last place (+0-13=0). In 1876, at the 4th American Chess Congress in Philadelphia, L. Barbour took last place (+0-10=4). In 1876, at the New York Clipper Tournament, Marr took last place (+1-19=0). In 1878, at the Paris International, Karl Pitschel took last place (+1-18=3). In 1879, at the 6th Canadian championship in Montreal, Nelson Loverin took last place (+0-12=0). In 1880, at the 5th American Chess Congress in New York, Albert Cohnfeld took last place (+2-15=1). In 1883, at the Vizayanagaram tournament in London, F. Dudley took last place (+1-24=0). In 1885, at the 1st British Chess Federation championship in London, William Mackeson took last place (+0-14=1). In 1886, at the 1st British Amateur championship, J. Kirke took last place (+0-18=0). In 1887, at the 3rd British Chess Federation Congress in London, James Mortimer took last place (+0-9=0). In 1888, at the 3rd Australian championship in Melbourne, David Hay took last place (+0-7=0). In 1889, at the 5th British Chess Federation in London, George Gossip took last place (+0-7=3). In 1889, at the 6th American Chess Congress in New York, Nicholas MacLeod took last place (+6-31=1). In 1890, at the 5th British Amateur championship in Manchester, Bardgett took last place (+0-11=0). In 1893, at the Franklin Chess Club championship in Philadelphia, Hoban took last place (+0-18=0). In 1897, at the end of the 1st Hungarian Correspondence Chess Tourney, Fellner took last place (+0-18=0). In 1895, at the Hastings International Tournament, Beniamino Vergani took last place (+2-17=2). In 1901, at the Monte Carlo tournament, Colonel Moreau took last place (+0-26=0). In 1945, at the US Amateur Championship, Walter Stephens took last place (+0-11=0). In 1947, at the Euroean Zonal at Hilversum, O’Sullivan took last place (+0-12=1). In 1951, at the British Championship, Mrs. H. Cobbold took last place (+0-8=0).

Lau, Rolf (1959- )

German Grandmaster (1986).

Laucks, E. Forry (1897-1965)

Founder (1934) and patron of the Log Cabin Chess Club, based in West Orange, New Jersey. He collapsed and died after the 6th round of the 66th U.S. Open in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Lautier, Joel (1973- )

Canadian-born French Grandmaster (1990) who was the youngest ever World Junior Champion in 1988. His father is French and his mother is Japanese. He is President of the Association of Chess Professionals (ACP). He is the highest rated player in France.

Lautier – Sokolov, Correze 1992
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.d4 exd4 5.Nxd4 Bb4 6.Nxc6 bxc6 7.Bd3 d5 8.exd5 cxd5 9.O-O O-O 10.Bg5 c6 11.Na4 h6 12.Bh4 Be7 13.Re1 Be6 14.c3 Re8 15.Bc2 Rb8 16.Qd4 a5 17.Re3 Qc7 18.Rae1 c5 19.Qd3 g5 20.Rxe6! (20...fxe6 21.Qg6+; 20...gxh4 21.Rxf6 Bxf6 22.Qh7+) 1-0

Lazic, Miroljub (1966- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2485.

Leary, Timothy (1920-1996)

Used chess sets as visual props for preparing classes at Harvard to receive the impact of LSD. He said, "Life is a chess game of experiences we play."


Chess, or a variant, was played in Lebanon during the Omeyyad period. The first unofficial Lebanese Chess Championship was in 1943. It was won by Charles Salameh. The first Lebanese Championship took place in 1953 and won by Charles Salameh. Lebanon joined FIDE in 1957. It was the first Arab country to join FIDE. In 1958, Lebanon played in its first chess Olympiad (Munich). In 1965, the Lebanese Chess Federation (Federation Libanaise des Echecs) was founded. Mohammed Sucar was its president from 1965 to 1997. Lebanon was a founding member of the Arab chess Federation in 1975. Lebanon was a founding member of the Mediterranean Sea Nations Federation in 1987. The first Lebanese Women’s Championship took place in 1994. The first Lebanese Blitz Championship took place in 1995.

Lechtynsky, Jiri (1947- )

Czech Grandmaster (1982). His FIDE rating is 2442.

Legall, M. de Kermur, Sire de (1702-1792)

French champion in the 18th century. He was the teacher of Philidor.

Legky, Nikolay (1955- )

Grandmaster from the Ujkraine. His FIDE rating is 2453.

Lehmann, Heinz (1921- )

Honorary grandmaster from Germany.

Lein, Anatoly (1931- )

Russian Grandmaster (1968) who moved to the United States in 1976. He was a mathematician. He played in 6 USSR Championships. He was Moscow champion in 1981. He won the US Open in 1976.

Leko, Peter (1979- )

Hungarian player who became the youngest International Master in the world at age 12. At 14 years and 4 months, he became the youngest grandmaster in history. In 1994 he became the World Junior Champion. In 2001, he was ranked as the 5th strongest chess player in the world. He also became the first Random Chess World Champion when he defeated Michael Adams in a match. In 2004 he drew with Kramnik in the Classical World Chess Championship in Brissago, Switzerland. In 2005 he won the 67th Corus Chess Tournament in Wijk aan Zee. It was a Category 19 event with average rating of 2721.

Leko – Dovramadjiev, 1991
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Nxc6 bxc6 7.e5 Ng8 8.Bc4 d5 9.exd6 exd6 10.O-O d5 11.Nxd5 cxd5 12.Bxd5 Rb8 13.Bxf7+ Kxf7 14.Qc7 Ra8 15.Re1 1-0

Lemachko, Tatjana (1948- )

Female chess master who defected from the Bulgarian team on the eve of the last round of the Lucerne Chess Olympiad in 1982 and moved to Switzerland. She tied for first place (with Akhmilovskaya) at the 1979 Alicante Women’s Interzonal Tournament. She was one of the eight finalists for the women's world championship for 1983.

Lenderman, Alex (1989- )

Brooklyn player who was the winner of the 2005 Boys Under-16 title at the World Youth Chess Championship in Belfort, France.

Lendl, Ivan (1960- )

Czech tennis champion and chess player. His father, Dr. Jiri Lendl, was a Czech junior chess champion who later became a strong tennis player and president of the Czechoslovakian Tennis Federation. In 2001, Jiri Lendl played Kasparov in a charity simultaneous exhibition in the Czech Republic.

Lengyel, Levente (1933- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1964). In 1962, he tied for 1st in the Hungarian Championship, but lost to Portisch in the play-off.

Lenin, Vladimir (1870-1924)

An avid chess player who used "Karpov" as one of his pseudonyms during his exile. He had a chess table made that had a secret compartment for the preservation of illegal Party documents and letters. Lenin later preferred Chekas to chess.

Leonardo da Cutri, Giovanni (1542-1587)

One of the leading 16th century Italian players. He moved to Rome to study law. In 1560, he was defeated by the visiting Spanish cleric, Ruy Lopez. In 1574, he defeated Ruy Lopez in a match played in the presence of Philip II. He may have been poisoned in 1587.

Leonhardt, Paul (1877-1934)

Polish-born German player of Grandmaster strength. He was Nordic Champion in 1907.

Lerner, Konstantin (1950- )

Russian Grandmaster (1986). He took 2nd in the 1984 and 1986 USSR Championships.

Lev, Ronen (1968- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2425.

Levenfish, Grigory (1889-1961)

Russian Grandmaster (1950) who was an engineer in the glass industry. He was USSR champion in 1934 (with Rabinovich) and 1937. He worked with Smyslov to write Rook Endings. He played in 12 USSR Championships.

Rabinovich – Levenfish, Moscow 1927
1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.Nf3 d6 4.Be2 Nf4 5.Bf1 dxe5 6.Nxe5 Qd5 7.Nf3 Qe4+ 8.Be2 Nxg2+ 9.Kf1 Bh3 10.d3 Nh4+ 11.Ke1 Nxf3 mate 0-1

Levitina, Irina (1954- )

She was the 4-time USSR Women's Champion who was not allowed to play in the 1979 Women's Interzonal in Buenos Aires and for the World Women's Championship because her brother immigrated (legally) to Israel. She is also a world class bridge player and now a professional bridge player. She has played on 3 chess Olympiads and 1 bridge Olympiad. She became a Woman Grandmaster in 1976. In 1984, she was the challenger and lost to Chiburdanidze with 2 wins, 7 draws, and 5 losses in the Women’s World Championship.

Levitina – Jovanovic, Menorca 1973
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 h6 8.Bh4 Be7 9.Qf3 Nbd7 10.O-O-O Qc7 11.g4 Rb8 12.Bg3 g5 13.e5 Ng8 14.exd6 Bxd6 15.fxg5 hxg5 16.Nxe6 (16...fxe6 17.Bxd6) 1-0

Levitt, Jonathan (1963- )

Grandmaster from England. His FIDE rating is 2441.

Levy, David (1945- )

Scottish International Master (1969) who, in 1968, made a $3,000 wager that no chess computer could beat him in ten years. He won his bet from Don Michie, John McCarthy, Seymour Pappert, and Ed Kozdrowicki. He has authored over 50 chess books. He is president of the International Computer Games Association (ICGA). In 1978 he won his wager by defeating Chess 4.7 with 3 wins and 1 draw. He was the first International Master to give up a draw to a computer program. He could have made the bet that no chess computer could beat him in 20 years. It was in 1989 that he finally lost to a computer when Deep Thought defeated Levy by the score of 4 wins and no losses or draws. In 1973, Levy said, “I am tempted to speculate that a computer program will not gain the International Master title before the turn of the century and that the idea of an electronic World Champion belongs only in the pages of a science fiction book.” Computers were IM strength in 1985 (rated over 2400) and world championship strength in 1997, when DEEP BLUE defeated Kasparov in a match.

Maeder – Levy, Haifa 1970
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Be3 Bg7 7.f3 Nc6 8.Qd2 O-O 9.O-O-O d5 10.exd5 Nb4 11.Bc4 Nxd5 12.Nb3 Nxc3 13.bxc3 Nxa2+ 14.Kb2 Nxc3 15.Qxd8 Nxd1+ 0-1

Lewis chessmen

Oldest known chess pieces in existence, carved from walrus tusk and whale teeth. 93 pieces were found in a stone chamber in a sand bank on the west coast of the Isle of Lewis in 1831 in the Western Isles off the coast of Scotland. They date back to 1150-1170. The pieces form parts of 5 sets, two complete. The pieces were discovered by a peasant who found a mysterious stone building buried under several feet of sand. It is believed the pieces were crafted in Norway. The pieces reside in the British Museum and the National Museum in Edinburgh.

Lewis, Lennox (1965- )

WBC Heavyweight Boxing Champion who plays chess every day while in training. Another boxer, Dr. Vladimir Klitschko, the WBO Heavyweight World Champion, also plays chess., along with his other boxing brother, Vitali.

Lewis, William (1787-1870)

Born in Birmingham, England on October 9, 1787. He was a chess player, author and organizer. In 1817 he wrote Oriental Chess. He took a job as the operator of the Turk chess automaton in 1818 to 1819. In April,1821, Lewis went to Paris to play a match against Alexandre Deschapelles. Three games were played, in which Deschapelles gave Lewis the odds of a pawn and move. Lewis won one game and drew two games. In 1822, he wrote : Elements. In 1823, he lost a match against La Bourdonnais, with one win and four losses. He headed the London Chess Club team in their correspondence match with Edinburgh in 1824. In 1827, his chess room folded when Lewis went bankrupt after investing in the piano business. He authored several chess books. In 1827 he wrote Chess Problems. Prior to this, chess problems were called chess positions or chess situations. He called himself the ‘Teacher of Chess.’ Alexander McDonnell became a pupil of Lewis in 1825. In 1831 and 1832, he wrote Progessive Lessons. In 1832, he wrote : Fifty Games. In 1835, he wrote A Selection of Games and Chess for Beginners. In 1838, he wrote : Chess Board Companion. It ran for nine editions. In 1838 an article in Bell’s Life by George Walker referred to William Lewis as ‘our past grandmaster.’ It was the first time the term grandmaster was used to indicate a top chess player. In 1844, he wrote : Treatise. He died on October 22, 1870 in England.

Liberzon, Vladimir (1937-1996)

Soviet Grandmaster (1965) who immigrated to Israel in 1973 and won the Israel championship in 1974. He was the first Soviet Grandmaster to immigrate to Israel. He was not a full-time professional chess player and was trained as an electrical engineer who worked for the National Electrical Company. He was the champion of Moscow in 1963 and 1964.

Liberzon – A. Geller, Leningrad 1960
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 f5 4.Nc3 fxe4 5.Nxe4 d5 6.Nxe5 dxe4 7.Nxc6 bxc6 8.Bxc6+ Bd7 9.Qh5+ Ke7 10.Qe5+ Be6 11.f4 Nh6 12.f5 Nxf5 13.Rf1 Nd4 14.Qc5+ Qd6 15.Qg5 mate 1-0


The largest public library for chess is the J. G. White Collection at the Cleveland Public Library. It was founded in 1928. The best European library is the van der Linde/Niemeijer Collection at the Royal Library in The Hague. Lothar Schmid has the largest private collection.


Site of the unofficial chess Olympics in October, 1976 in protest to the main chess Olympiad in Haifa, Israel. There were 37 countries that played in this Olympiad in Tripoli. It was won by El Salvador. Each team had its own car and driver and each team member received $8 a day. Forty-eight nations sent their team to Haifa. Italy had a team in both Olympics. Their FIDE delegate proposed that the U.S. be barred from holding FIDE events and participating in FIDE meetings because the U.S. failed to grant a visa for a Libyan delegate.

Lie, Kjetil A. (1980- )

Grandmaster from Norway. His FIDE rating is 2472.

Lilienthal, Andor (1911- )

International Grandmaster (1950) and the oldest grandmaster in the world. In 1935 he emigrated from Hungary to the Soviet Union, becoming a Soviet citizen in 1939. He tied for 1st place (with Boleslavsky) in the 1939-40 USSR Chess Championship. He took 8th-10th in the 1950 Budapest Candidates Tournament. From 1951 to 1960, he was the trainer to Tigran Petrosian. He served as Smyslov’s second during his world championship matches. In 1976 he returned to Hungary. He has played against 10 world champions (beating Lasker, Capablanca, Alekhine, Botvinnik, and Smyslov). He has also beaten Tartakower, Najdorf, Bronstein, and Taimanov.

Boros – Lilienthal, Budapest 1933
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.f4 d5 4.fxe5 Nxe4 5.Qf3 Nc6 6.Nxe4 Nd4 7.Qf4 dxe4 8.Bc4 Bf5 9.c3 g5 10.Bxf7+ Kxf7 11.Qf2 e3 12.Qf1 exd2+ 13.Kd1 dxc1=Q+ 14.Kxc1 g4 15.b4 Qg5+ 16.Kd1 Rd8 0-1


City in southern Spain and the site of the premier super tournament of chess. The first Torneo Ciudad de Linares was held in 1978 and won by Swedish master Jann Eslon. The change from a master event to a small grandmaster tournament took place in Linares in 1979. It was won by Larry Christiansen. The main organizer was Luis Rentero. From 1978 to 2005, there have been 22 Linares tournaments. Kasparov has won the most (10) and has participated more than anyone else (14). In 1991, it was the first category 17 tournament ever, with an average rating of 2658. That year, it was won by Vasily Ivanchuk. The 1991 event was also the first tournament since 1981 that Kasparov failed to at least tie for 1st place. In 1998, it was a category 21 tournament, with the average rating of 2752. Anand won that event.

Lipke, Paul (1870-1955)

German lawyer and player of Grandmaster strength. He was the foremost blindfold player of his day.

Lipschuetz, Solomon (Samuel or Simon) (1863-1905)

American chess master and first officially recognized American chess champion. He was born in Hungary and came to America in 1880. He lost a match against George Mackenzie in late 1886 for the U.S. Championship. In 1888 he added a 122-page addendum to Gossip’s Chessplayer’s Manual. In 1889 he was the top American finisher at the 6th American Chess Congress in New York and considered the U.S. chess champion. The organizers of this event had announced that the top American in this tournament could bear the title. In 1890 he played a match against Jackson Showalter in Louisville, Kentucky and lost. Showalter then claimed the title of U.S. chess champion. In 1892 Lipschuetz defeated Jackson Showalter in a match (he won with a 7-1 score) in New York to claim the title, but then retired from chess for health reasons. The title reverted back to Showalter. In 1895, Lipschuetz returned, claiming that he never relinquished the title. Showalter then beat him in a match in New York in 1895. He was New York state chess champion in 1889 and 1889. In 1905 he died of lung disease.

Delmar – Lipschuetz, New York 1888
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nxc6 bxc6 6.Bd3 d5 7.e5 Ng4 8.O-O Bc5 9.h3 Nxe5 10.Re1 Qf6 11.Qe2 O-O 12.Qxe5 Qxf2+ 13.Kh1 Bxh3 14.gxh3 Qf3+ 15.Kh2 Bd6 16.Qxd6 Qf2+ 0-1

Liss, Eran (1975- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2487.

Litinskaya-Shul, Marta (1949- )

Russian Woman Grandmaster (1976). She was USSR Woman Champion in 1972. She was born Marta Shul.

Liu Wenzhe (1940- )

First Chinese chess master and China’s first chess player to defeat a grandmaster. At the 1978 Olympiad in Buenos Aires, he defeated Dutch Grandmaster Jan Donner. Since 1986 he has been the head coach of the Chinese national chess team.

Liverpool Mercury

The first English newspaper to publish a chess column. The column first appeared on July 9, 1813 and ended on August 20, 1814.

Ljubojevic, Ljubomir (1950- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1971). He won the Yugoslav Championship in 1977 and 1982. In 1983, he was ranked 3rd in the world.

Lobron, Eric (1960- )

US-born (in Philadelphia) German Grandmaster (1982). He won the German Championship in 1980.

Loginov, Valery (1955- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2527.

Lombardy, William (Bill) (1937- )

American Grandmaster (1960) and the first American to win an official world chess championship when he won the World Junior Championship in 1957 with a perfect 11-0

score at Toronto. He was ordained a priest in 1967 by Cardinal Spellman. Lombardy was Fischer’s second in Reykjavik when Fischer played Spassky for the world championship title. He had played in 7 chess Olympiads for the United States. He won the US Open in 1963 and 1965. He learned the game at age 9 from a neighbor. In 1954 he won the New York State Championship. He won the Canadian Open in 1956 (with Larry Evans). In 1978 he was attacked in New York City by a mugger who had a knife. Tendons in two fingers were severed and he underwent a long operation to repair the severed tendons. He is no longer a priest and is now married.

Gerusel – Lombardy, Toronto 1957
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 Nc6 5.Nf3 d5 6.a3 Bxc3 7.Qxc3 Ne4 8.Qc2 e5 9.dxe5 Bf5 10.Qa4 O-O 11.Be3 d4 12.Rd1 dxe3 13.Rxd8 exf2+ 14.Kd1 Rfxd8+ 15.Kc1 a6 16.Qb3 Nc5 17.Qc3 Na5 18.e4 Nab3+ (19.Kb1 Rd1+ 20.Ka2 Ra1 mate) 0-1

London 1851

First international chess tournament ever held, which started on May 26, 1851. The tournament was held in conjunction with the Great Exhibition of Art and Industry of 1851. Howard Staunton and the St. George's Club (Polytechnic Building, Cavendish Square) were the organizers. Anderssen won a silver cup and 183 British pounds. He owed 1/3 of his winnings to Szen after a private agreement that if either were to gain first prize, he would share it with the other. 2nd place went to Wyvill. Some games were played with colors reversed, where Black moves first.

London 1862

First major tournament where every competitor plays against every other one (round robin). Adolf Anderssen won this 14-player event, winning 12 out of 13 (he won 12 games and lost one game, to Paulsen). Paulsen took 2nd place, followed by Owen. Drawn games were replayed until a decision was reached. Anderssen only had one drawn game (against Mongredien) that he had to replay.

London Rules

In 1922, Capablanca proposed a set of rules for any future world championship matches. The became known as the London rules. The rules included the following: The first player to win 6 games would win the match. Playing sessions would be limited to 5 hours duration. Time control would be 40 moves in 2.5 hours. The champion must defend his title within one year of receiving a challenge. The champions would decide the date of the match. The purse would be at least $10,000. The highest purse must be accepted. The London rules were signed by Alekhine, Bogoljubow, Maroczy, Reti, Rubinstein, Tartakower, and Vidmar.

Lone Pine

Town in California where Louis Statham financed a series of chess tournaments from 1971 to 1981.

Longest Games

The longest chess game is 269 moves (Ivan Nikolic – Goran Arsovic, Belgrade 1989) which ended in a draw after 20 hours of play. Two other games have gone to 200 or more moves. The longest won game for White is 193 moves (Stepak – Mashian, Israeli Championship 1980). That involved a Queen and Pawns vs. Queen endgame. The longest won game for Black is 161 moves (Duras – Janowski, San Sebastian 1911). Almost all of the longest games have been a Rook and Bishop vs. Rook endgame, including the longest game.

Lopez de Segura (Sigura), Ruy (1530-1580)

Spanish priest and one of the leading players of his day. In 1559-60 he went to Rome to attend an ecclesiastical conference. It was there that he defeated all the best players in Rome, including Leonardo. In 1561 he proposed the 50-move rule to claim a draw and introduced the word gambit (specifically, the Damiano Gambit 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f6 3.Nxe5). In 1561 he wrote Libro de la Invencion Liberal y Arte del Juego del Axedrez, muy vtil y prouechosa. It was the first major chess book since 1512 (almost 50 years), when Damiano wrote his chess book. In 1572 he returned to Rome and again, defeated the top Italian players. In 1574-75 he was in the court of King Philip II of Spain and lost a match with Leonardo. Ruy Lopez did play a blindfold simultaneous exhibition, which impressed the king. Ruy Lopez received a solid gold rook and chain from King Philip, along with ownership to one of the richest parishes in the land. In his writings, Ruy Lopez claimed that 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 (Philidor’s Defense), was better than 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6.

Loranth, Alice (?-1998)

Long-time head of the Fine Arts and Special Collections Department of the Cleveland Public Library. She presided over one of the largest chess collections in the world, the John G. White Collection, for 30 years.

Louis IX (1214-1270)

The only French king to be made a saint. Upon the death of his father in 1226, he became king of France at the age of 12. He led the 7th Crusade in 1248. He was captured by the Egyptians in 1250. He negotiated his freedom for a costly ransom, then stayed in the Holy Land. He stayed there for four years and only returned to France when his mother died in 1254. When he returned, he outlawed prostitution and chess. In 1269, he led the 8th Crusade and decided to attack Tunisia in Africa. But his forces were struck by plague and he died of bubonic plague in 1270. It is said that he received a fine chess set as a gift from Aladdin.

Lovegrove, Walter (1869-1956)

Master emeritus of the US Chess Federation and one of San Francisco’s leading chess players. He was a national correspondence champion and claimed the Championship of the Pacific Coast, California Championship, and the Mechanics Institute Championship.

Lowenthal, Johann (1810-1876)

Hungarian player and one of the top 10 players of the 1850s. In 1848 he came to the United States to escape the Hungarian Revolution of 1848. When the regime was overthrown in 1849, he fled to New York. In 1850 he moved to Cincinnati where he established a cigar divan and gave chess lessons. His customers paid his fare to the London International Tournament in 1851, but he got knocked out in the first round. Because of his early loss, he felt too embarrassed to return to the United States. Staunton found him a job as secretary to the St. George’s Chess Club in London. He invented the demonstration chess board in 1857. He organized the second international tournament ever held, London 1862. He was considered the best opening theorist of his day.

Anderssen – Lowenthal, London 1851
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Bc4 Bc5 5.O-O d6 6.c3 d3 7.b4 Bb6 8.a4 a5 9.b5 Ne5 10.Nxe5 dxe5 11.Qh5 Qf6 12.Ba3 Ne7 13.Nd2 Be6 14.Bxd3 O-O-O 15.Qe2 Ng6 16.g3 Bh3 17.c4 Nf4 0-1

Loyd, Sam (1841-1911)

The most famous American chess composer. As a 16 year old, he served with Paul Morphy as a contributor to Chess Monthly. He modified an Eastern board game and popularized it as Parcheesi. He was known as "The Puzzle King." He served as president of the New York Chess Club and organized the first international tournament on American soil. He composed about 3,000 chess problems. He owned a chain of music stores and was also a magician and ventriloquist. He produced over 10,000 puzzles in his lifetime.

Lputian, Smbat (1958- )

Armenian Grandmaster (1984). His FIDE rating is 2629.

Lucena, Luis Ramirez (1475-1530)

Author of the oldest existing printed book (incunabulim) on chess (modern chess), Repeticion: de Amores; E Arte. De Axedres con cl. Juegos de partido. The book was published in Salamanca in 1497 where Lucena was a university student. Only 20 copies are known to exist. Lucena may have written the Gottingen manuscript in 1500 since his book and the Gottingen manuscript are similar. The book was dedicated to Prince Don Johan the Third (1478-1497), the only male child of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain. The book may have been a plagiarized book written by Francesch Vicent in 1495. No known copies of Vicent’s book, entitled Libre dels Jochs Partits dels Schacs en Nombre de 100, are in existence. Vicent’s book contained 100 chess problems. Lucena’s book contains 150 chess problems (75 problems with the new rules of chess and 75 problems from the Arabic medieval chess)..


Sight of the 1982 chess Olympiad in Switzerland. The Ugandan team went by mistake to Lugano, Switzerland (home of the 1968 Olympiad). Tatjana Lemachko defected from the Bulgarian women’s chess team just before the last round of this event. The 1993 World Team Championship was held in Lucerne.

Lukacs, Peter (1950- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1986). In 1980, he won the Hungarian Championship.

Lukov, Valentin (1955- )

Bulgarian Grandmaster (1988). His FIDE rating is 2439.

Lundin, Erik (1904- )

Swedish International Master (1950) and honorary Grandmaster (1983). He was Swedish champion 10 times and played on 9 Swedish Olympiad teams.

Lupu, Mircea-Sergiu (1962- )

Grandmaster from France. His FIDE rating is 2457.

Luther, Thomas (1969- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2540.

Lutikov, Anatoly (1933-1989)

Russian Grandmaster (1974). He played in 6 USSR Championships, taking 3rd place in 1968/69.

Lutz, Christopher (1971- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2616.

MacAdam, Daniel A. (1885-1985)

Chess player who lived to age 100. He was the founder of Canadian Chess Chat in 1947. It was originally called Maritime Chess News Bulletin. He was the editor from 1947 to 1956. From 1967 to 1975, he was the Chairman of the Chess Foundation of Cananda.

MacDonnell, George (1830-1899)

Irish chess player of International Master strength. He was a reverend. He wrote a chess column for the Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News.

Macek Kalchbrenner, Vlasta (1952- )

She took 1st place in the Yugoslav Women’s Champion in 1973 and 1980 (but lost on tie-break). Women’s International Master (1974).

MacHack VI

First computer to play in a chess tournament. It played in all 5 rounds of the Massachusetts Amateur Championship in 1967. The chess program was written by Richard Greenblatt of MIT’s Project Mac for the Dec PDP-6 (1200 KHz) computer. It lost 4 games and drew one game (to Conroy). Its first rating was 1269 and first published rating in 1967 was 1493. In the 1967 Boston Amateur, it became the first computer to defeat a human, who was rated 1510. In that tournament, MacHack VI won two games and drew two games. By the end of 1968, MacHack VI’s rating was 1529.

Machulsky, Anatoly (1956- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2505.

Mackenzie, Arthur (1861-1905)

Chessplayer who composed chess problems when he was blind. He was responsible for the popularity of the two-mover in the early 20th century. By coincidence, a problem submitted to a composing

tournament was almost identical to another problem submitted by H. Lane. They both featured the same key move. By a greater coincidence, H. Lane was also blind.

Mackenzie, George Henry (1837-1891)

Born on March 24, 1834 in North Kessock, Scotland. In 1856, at the age of 19, he purchased a commission in the 60th Rifles (the King’s Royal Rifle Corps). He served as a Lieutenant in the British army, primarily in Ireland, but went to India in 1857 during the Sepoy Rebellion. He resigned his army commission in 1861 to become a professional chess player. In 1862, he won a handicap tournament in London, defeating Adolf Anderssen and Frederick Deacon. In 1862, he defeated Reverend George MacDonnell in a match in Dublin, Ireland (+6-3=1). In 1863 he emigrated to the United States and enlisted in the Union Army. After 15 weeks as a private, he earned the rank of Captain in charge of a Black regiment. Mackenzie later deserted and was discharged from the Union Army. In 1864 he rejoined the Army and fought with distinction in three battles. However, he was arrested again on the previous desertion charges and imprisoned. He was released in May, 1865 where he moved to New York and started playing chess. In 1866, he won a tournament in New York. In March 1866, Mackenzie defeated Gustave Reichelm in New York in a match (+5-0=2). In 1867, Mackenzie defeated Reichhelm in Philadelphia (+7-0=2) for the title of U.S. Chess Champion. In 1869 at New York he won 82 games and lost 8 in the longest master tournament ever held (48 players and double round robin), winning the event. In 1871, he won the 2nd American Chess Congress, held in Cleveland, Ohio, scoring 14 points (drawn games, which did not count, were replayed) and earning $100 for 1st prize. In 1874, he won the 3rd American Chess Congress, held in Chicago (+8-1=1). In August 1876, he won the Café International Tournament in New York (+23-5=2). In 1878, he took 4th place at the Paris International Tournament. In 1880, he took 1st place at the 5th American Chess Congress in New York (+11-2=5). In 1881, he defeated Max Judd in a match in Saint Louis (+7-5=1). In 1882, he took 4th-5th at Vienna. At Vienna, he drew with Steinitz, breaking Steinitz’s 25 game winning streak. In 1882, he lost a match against James Mason in London (+0-1

=2), then won a match against Joseph Blackburne (+2-1=0). In 1883, he took 3rd in the 5th Manhattan Chess Club Championship, won by Gustave Simonson. In 1883, he took 5th-7th at London. In 1883, he lost a match to Steinitz in New York (+1-3=2). In 1885, he took 4th in the 20th British Counties Chess Association Congress in Hereford, England. In 1885, he took 7th in the 4th German Chess Federation Championship in Hamburg. In 1885, he took 4th in the 7th Manhattan Chess Club Championship. In 1886, he defeated Samuel Lipschuetz in a match in New York (+5-3=5). In 1886, he tied for 2nd-3rd in the 9th Manhattan Chess Club Championship. In 1886, he drew a match with Burn (+4-4=2). In 1887 he won the 5th German Chess Championship in Frankfurt (+13-3=4). He, thus, became the first American chess player to win an international event. In 1888 he won the 5th Scottish Chess Championship in Glasgow (+4-0=2). In 1888, he took 2nd in the 4th British Chess Federation Championship, held in Bradford, England. The event was won by Isidor Gunsberg. In 1888, he defeated Celso Golmayo Zupide in a match in Havana. In 1890, he took 3rd-4th in the 6th British Chess Federation Congress, held in Manchester England. He died of tuberculosis in a New York hotel on April 14, 1891 at the age of 54. Steinitz reported that his death was from an intentional overdose of morphine. This rumor was started by a doctor who refused to sign a certificate for an insurance policy because he had not been paid a fee. Mackenzie won the 1st place prize of every American tournament he entered (13 tournaments and 7 matches). He was inducted in the U.S. Hall of Fame in 1992.

D. Thompson – Mackenzie, London 1868
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.d4 g4 5.Ne5 Qh4+ 6.Kd2 Qf2+ 7.Kc3 Nc6 8.a3 d6 9.Nxc6 bxc6 10.Bd3 Rb8 11.Rf1 Qxd4+ 12.Kxd4 Bg7+ 13.e5 Bxe5+ 14.Ke4 Nf6 mate 0-1

Macleod, Nicholas (1870-1965)

Canadian Champion in 1886 and 1888.

Maelzel, Johann (1772-1838)

Mechanical engineer who bought the Turk from Wolfgang von Kempelen's son. Inventor of the metronome in 1816 and was a good friend of Beethoven. Prince Eugene de Beauharnais bought the Turk from Maelzel in 1811 for 30,000 francs and Maelzel gave part of the money to Beethoven. In 1817 he bought the Turk back from the Prince for the same sum. No cash was handed over to the Prince, but Maelzel was to pay from any profit he might make. The Prince died but his heirs sued Maelzel for the balance. Maelzel fled to America with the Turk to escape the debts and lawsuits. Maelzel was buried at sea in 1838 after dying on a ship bound from Cuba to America.

Magazines, Chess

The first magazine devoted entirely to chess was Le Palamede, founded by La Bourdonnais in 1836. The first English chess magazine, The Philidorian, was edited by George Walker in 1838. The oldest existing chess magazine in the world is Deutsche Schachzeitung, founded in 1846. The first U.S. chess magazine may have been the American Chess Magazine, edited by Charles Stanley in 1846. At the same time, another American chess magazine appeared, The Chess Palladium and Mathematical Sphinx. The longest surviving English magazine, the British Chess Magazine, was started in 1881. The first Russian magazine, Shakhmatnyi listok, was published by Chigorin in 1876.

Magem Badals, Jordi (1967- )

Grandmaster from Spain. His FIDE rating is 2486.

Magerramov, Elmar (1958- )

Granmaster from Azerbaijan. His FIDE rating is 2527.

Mainka, Romauld (1963- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2446.

Makarichev, Sergey (1953- )

Russian Grandmaster (1976). He won the European Junior Championship in 1973/74. He won the Moscow Championship in 1976 and 1983.

Makarov, Marat (1963- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2514.

Makogonov, Vladimir (1904-1993)

Russian International Master (1950) and honorary Grandmaster (1987). He was a mathematics teacher. He played in 8 USSR Championships. He won the championship of Azerbaijan several times.

Makovetz, Gyula (1860-1903)

Editor of Hungary's first chess magazine, Budapesti Sukkezende, from 1889 to 1894. In 1890 he had a peak rating around 2500 and probably one of the top 10 players in the world. In 1890 he won a tournament at Graz, defeating Emanuel Lasker. In 1892 he took 2nd place (with Porges) at Dresden, behind Tarrasch. In 1893 he defeated Charousek in a match (2 wins, 3 draws, 1 loss).

Maksimenko, Andrei (1969- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2505.

Malaniuk, Vladimir (1957- )

Russian Grandmaster (1987). He was 2nd in the 1986 USSR Championship, but last in 1988.

Malich, Burkhard (1936- )

German Grandmaster (1975). He was East German Champion in 1957 and 1973.

Malisauskas, Vidmantas (1963- )

Grandmaster from Lithuania. His FIDE rating is 2514.


The first recorded chess game in Malta was in 1880. Leone Benjacar wrote chess articles for the Daily Malta Chronicle in 1880 and created the Malta Chess Club. The Maltese Chess Association was formed in 1923. The first official chess championship occurred in Malta in 1925, won by Oscar Serracino-Inglott. Malta joined FIDE in 1959 and played in the Chess Olympiad in 1960.

Malypetrova, Jana (1947- )

One of the strongest female chess players in the 1970s. She was born in Prague and won the Czech Ladies Championship in 1966 and 1968. She won the British Ladies Championship eight times from 1970 to 1974, and in 1976, 1977, 1979. She married British International Master William Hartston in 1970. She later divorce him and married Grandmaster Tony Miles. She later divorced him and married International Master Robert Bellin. She was British Ladies Champion in 1973 when her husband William Hartston was Men’s Champion. She was British Ladies Champion in 1979 when her husband Robert Bellin was Men’s Champion. She is a medical doctor specializing in anesthesiology. She earned the title of Woman Grandmaster in 1982.

Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar (1985- )

Azerbaijan chess player and the 2003 and 2005 World Junior Chess Champion. In the 2003 World Under-18 championship, he won with a score of 10 out of 11. His FIDE rating is 2646.

Mamedyarov – Guliev, Turkey 2002
1.Nf3 d5 2.c4 c6 3.e3 Nf6 4.b3 g6 5.Bb2 Bg7 6.d4 O-O 7.Nbd2 Ne4 8.Bd3 Bf5 9.Bxe4 dxe4 10.Nh4 c5 11.Nxf5 gxf5 12.Qh5 cxd4 13.O-O-O e6 14.g4 f4 15.Nxe4 Nc6 16.exd4 Qa5 17.d5 1-0

Manchester Chess Club

Oldest chess club in Britain, which began on September 3, 1817 in the Albion Hotel in Manchester. Henry Blackburne was champion of the Manchester Chess Club in the 1860s.

Manhattan Chess Club

Founded on November 24, 1877 at the Café Logeling in New York City. Dues were $4 a year. On December 7, 1877 the members voted for the name of the chess club to be the Manhattan Chess Club (the other choices were Morphy Chess Club and Metropolitan Chess Club). Its first tournament was held on January 7, 1878. In 1882, world champion (1866-1894) William Steinitz joined the Manhattan Chess Club. The Manhattan Chess Club hosted the world championship in 1886 (Steinitz-Zukertort) and 1889 (Steinitz-Gunsberg). In 1894 the club hosted the first 8 games of the Lasker-Steinitz World Championship Match. After the match, Lasker joined the Manhattan Chess Club. In 1901 Frank Marshall won the Manhattan Chess Club Championship. In 1909 Jose Capablanca joined the Manhattan Chess Club. Women were not allowed to join the club until 1938. In 1942, Capablanca fell from a stroke while watching a game at the Club and died the next day. In 1955 Bobby Fischer joined the Manhattan Chess Club. In 1973 there were over 400 members in the Manhattan Chess Club. From 1877 to 2002, it was the oldest chess club in America in continuous existence. It was once located at Carnegie Hall. The Manhattan Chess Club was evicted from a building owned by the American Chess Foundation. The club closed in January, 2002. Winners have included Benjamin (the youngest at 14), Benko, Bisguier, Bonin, Denker, Hanham, Hodges, Janowski, Kashdan, Kastner, Kevitz (7 times), Kupchik, Maroczy, Marshall, McKelvie, Phillips, Reinfeld, Sherwin, Zaltsman, and Zuckerman

Mannheim Congress 1914

A series of chess tournaments in Germany when World War I broke out. The 19th congress of the German Chess Federation began on July 20 and stopped August 1. First place was 2000 marks ($500). Players included Alekhine, Marshall, Reti, Janowski, Spielmann, Tarrasch, Mieses, Duras, Tartakover, Bogoljubov, and Vidmar. Alekhine won (9.5-1.5), followed by Vidmar and Spielmann. Only 11 of the scheduled 17 rounds were played. Frank Marshall escaped to Amsterdam. His baggage showed up in New York five years later with all of the contents still intact. The Russian chess masters find themselves all under arrest and the prize fund is cut in half. Alekhine was held in a German police station then a military prison. He was certified as medically unfit for military service and released after 6 weeks. Tarrasch learned that his son was already killed in action.

Manor, Ilan (1969- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2490.

Mansfield, Comins (1896-1984)

Grandmaster of chess composition (1972). In 1963, he was President of the FIDE’s Commission for Chess Composition. He was perhaps the best two-move problem composer who ever lived. He began composing chess problems in 1913. He composed chess problems for 72 years. He was President of the British Chess Problem Society. He died at the age of 87.

Marache, Naploeon (1815-1875)

Born in France on June 15, 1815 and came to the USA when he was 13. In 1845, he began composing chess problems. In October 1845, he published The Chess Palladium and Mathematical Sphynx; devoted to the Curiosities of Chess and the Ingenuities of Arithetic. This was the first American chess periodical (it lasted for only three issues). In 1856, he won the championship cup of the New York Chess Club. In 1857 he participated in the First American Chess Congress. In the first round, he defeated Daniel Fiske (+3-2). In round 2, he lost to Dr. Benjamin Raphael (+2-3=2). In 1865, he wrote the chess section for a new edition of Hoyle. In 1866 he wrote Marache’s Manual of Chess. He was the chess editor of the Wilkes’ Spirit of the Times. His pseudonym was N.O.K. He died on May 11, 1875.

Marathon chess

The first marathon chess record was set by R.H. Jones and Stewart Walker who played chess 52 hours non stop at St. Lukes College in 1962. It appeared in the 1962 Guinness Book or Records. In 1983 two bus drivers from Bristol, England played chess non-stop for 200 hours. Roger Long and Graham Croft played 189 games with Long winning 96 to 93.

Marco, Georg (1863-1923)

Romanian-born Austrian of Grandmaster strength. He was a very large and powerful man. He was referred to as the “strongest” chess player in the world because of his physical strength. He was primarily known as a chess analyst for Wiener Schachzeitung in Vienna from 1898 to 1916. He began as a medical student but gave it up for chess. He was secretary of the Viennese Chess Association.

Marco – Maroczy, Ostende 1905
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 5.Be3 Nf6 6.Nd2 d5 7.e5 Nfd7 8.f4 Nc6 9.c3 g5 10.Nxe6 fxe6 11.Qh5+ Ke7 12.f5 Nf6 13.Bc5+ (13...Kd7 14.Qf7+) 1-0

Margolis, Albert (1908-1951)

Western Chess Association Champion (U.S. Open) in 1927. Chicago Champion in 1933 and 1945.

Maric, Alisa (1970- )

Twin sister of Mirjana Maric. She is a women’s grandmaster (1988). Alisa and Mirjana are the only twin grandmasters in history. At age 12, she was Belgrade women’s champion. In 1985, she was the World’s under-16 Women’s Champion. In 1986, she was Yugoslavia Women’s Champion. In 1991, she was the world women’s championship challenger, but lost to Xie Jun.

Maric, Mirjana (1970- )

Twin sister of Alisa Maric. She is a women’s grandmaster and former Cadet World Champion (1985). Mirjana and Alisa are the only twin grandmasters in history.

Marie de France (1130-1190)

Earliest known French female writer and the first woman writer to allude to chess. In her romance work Eliduc, she wrote: “The King, rising from high table, went to his daughter’s chambers to play at his beloved chess with an invited foreign guest. His daughter, sitting next to him, was eager to learn chess. When Eliduc came in, the King stopped play.”

Marin, Mihai (1965- )

Grandmaster from Romania. His FIDE rating is 2537.

Mariotti, Sergio (1946- )

First and only Italian Grandmaster (1974). In 1966 he won the Italian Junior Championship. He was Italian champion in 1969.

Menal – Mariotti, Correspondence 1984
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 O-O 8.a4 Bb7 9.c3 Na5 10.Bc2 d5 11.exd5 e4 12.Nd4 Qxd5 13.f3 Bc5 14.fxe4 Bxd4+ 15.Kh1 Qg5 16.cxd4 Ng4 17.Kg1 Qf4 18.Qf3 Qxh2+ 19.Kf1 Qh4 0-1

Marjanovic, Slavoljub (1955- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1978). He won the 1985 Yugoslav Championship.

Markovic, Gordana Jovanovic (1951- )

Women’s International Master (1979). Yugoslav Women’s Champion in 1974, 1977, and 1981.

Markowski, Tomasz (1975- )

Grandmaster from Poland. His FIDE rating is 2564.

Markus, Robert (1983- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE ratings is 2591.

Maroczy, Geza (1870-1951)

Hungarian grandmaster (1950). He was a waterworks engineer and math teacher who was one of the most successful players from 1899 to 1908. Supposedly his ghost returned in 1985 and has been playing Korchnoi thru a Swiss medium. After World War I, he moved to Hastings. He was the coach and trainer of world women’s champion Vera Menchik. He also coached future world champion Max Euwe.

Maroczy – Moreau, Monte Carlo 1903
1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.Qxd4 Nc6 4.Qe3 Be7 5.Nc3 d6 6.Bd2 Be6 7.O-O-O Bf6 8.f4 Qc8 9.Nf3 Nh6 10.h3 Bxc3 11.Bxc3 O-O 12.f5 Bd7 13.f6 Ne5 14.Nxe5 gxf6 15.Qg3+ Kh8 16.Nxd7 (16...Qxd7 17.Bxf6 mate) 1-0

Marovic, Drazen (1938- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1975). He is the author of Dynamic Pawn Play in Chess.

Marshall, Frank (1877-1944)

The first American to defeat a Soviet player in an international tournament (New York, 1924). He reigned as U.S. Champion for 29 years, but only defended his title once when he defeated Ed Lasker (5-4) in 1923. He was the first master to play more than 100 games simultaneously. In 1916 he played 105 players at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. He won 82 games, lost 8, and drew 15. In 1922 he played 155 games simultaneously in Montreal. He scored 126 wins, 21 draws, and 8 losses after 7 hours of play. A week later he was able to replay 153 of the games from memory. What bothered him was forgetting the other two games. He thought he was losing his memory. He started the Marshall Chess Club in 1922 to rival the Manhattan Chess Club. He claimed he played at least one game of chess every day for 57 years. In 1904 he was proclaimed U.S. Chess Champion when Pillsbury declined a match with him because of illness. Pillsbury died in 1906. Marshall did not officially accept the title until 1909, when he won a match with Jackson Showalter, the champion before Pillsbury. He announced his retirement in 1936 as U.S. Chess Champion. He won 7 international tournaments without losing a game. Marshall died returning home from a night of bingo.

Marshall – Dus Chotimirsky, Carlsbad 1911
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 dxc4 4.e3 a6 5.Ne5 Nd7 6.Nxd7 Bxd7 7.Bxc4 Bc6 8.O-O Bd6 9.Nc3 Qh4 10.f4 Nf6 11.Bd2 Ng4 12.h3 Qg3?? 13.Qxg4 1-0

Stepan Levitsky – Frank Marshall, Breslau 1912
1.d4 e6 2.e4 d5 3.Nc3 c5 4.Nf3 Nc6 5.exd5 exd5 6.Be2 Nf6 7.O-O Be7 8.Bg5 O-O 9.dxc5 Be6 10.Nd4 Bxc5 11.Nxe6 fxe6 12.Bg4 Qd6 13.Bh3 Rae8 14.Qd2 Bb4 15.Bxf6 Rxf6 16.Rad1 Qc5 17.Qe2 Bxc3 18.bxc3 Qxc3 19.Rxd5 Nd4 20.Qh5 Ref8 21.Re5 Rh6 22.Qg5 Rxh3 23.Rc5 Qg3!! [24.hxg3 Ne2 mate; 24.fxg3 Ne2+ 25.Kh1 Rxf1 mate; 24. Qxg3 Ne2+ 25.Kh1 Nxg3+ 26.Kg1 (26.fxg3 Rxf1 mate) 26...Nxf1 27.gxh3 Nd2 wins] 0-1

Marshall Chess Club

Founded by Frank Marshall in 1915. It started in the back room of a Manhattan restaurant. The Marshall Chess Club is the longest existing chess club in its very own building.

Martin, Andrew (1957- )

International chess master (1984) who claimed a new world record of playing 321 chess players all at the same time, on February 21, 2004 at Wellington College in Crowthorne, England. He won 294 games, drew 26, and only lost one game.

Martinovic, Slobodan (1945- )

Grandmaster (1979) from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2448.

Martner, Rene (1915- )

Chilean Champion in 1957, 1959, 1960, 1964, and 1973.

Martz, William (1945-1983)

Wisconsin International Master (1975) who set the USCF record of 104 consecutive tournament games without a loss. He held degrees in mathematics and law but never practiced. He was a car salesman. In 1965 he won the US Junior Chess Championship in Boston. In 1982 he tied for 1st place at the U.S. Open. He died of cancer at the age of 37.

Martz – P. Webster, Wisconsin 1974

1c4 e5 2.Nc3 d6 3.d4 Nc6 4.Nf3 Bg4 5.d5 Nce7 6.e4 g6 7.Be2 Bg7 8.Be3 c5 9.Nxe5 Bxe2 10.Qa4+ Kf8 11.Nd7+ Ke8 12.Nxc5+ Nc6 13.Nxb7 Qc7 14.Nb5 1-0

Marx, Karl (1818-1883)

Amateur chess player who was a very poor loser at chess. When he lost, he got angry and flew in a rage. He loved to play chess all night long and his usual chess partner was Wilhelm Liebknecht.

Mason, James (1849-1905)

James Mason (born Patrick Dwyer?) was born in Kilkenny, Ireland on November 19, 1849. The family moved to New Orleans in 1861, then to New York. At the age of 11, his name was changed to avoid prevalent anti-Irish prejudice in America. In New York, he became a newsboy and started frequenting the chess cafes in the area. In 1870, he became champion of the New York Chess Club, and represented New York in matches against Philadelphia. In 1874, he defeated Eugene Delmar in a match in New York, and Aristides Martinez in Philadelphia. In August 1876, he won the 4th American Chess Congress (the Grand International Centennial Chess Congress) in Philadelphia (+8-1=5), winning $300. He then took 4th in the Café International Tournament in New York, won by George Mackenzie. In October 1876, he won the New York Clipper Centennial Tournament. In 1876, he defeated Henry Bird in New York (+11-4=4). In 1877, he edited the American Chess Journal. In 1878, a subscription was raised by American chess players to send Mason to compete in the Paris 1878 tournament. He failed to reach the prize list and was embarrassed to return to the United States. He then settled in London. In 1879, he defeated William Potter and Joseph Blackburne in matches in London. In the 1880s, he was one of the top 10 players in the world. In 1882, he took 3rd, behind Steinitz and Winawer, in Vienna. He was the first person to lose a game of chess on time (Vienna, 1882). In 1883, he took 3rd, behind Winawer and Blackburne, in the 3rd German Chess Federation tournament in Nurenberg. In 1885, he tied for 2nd-6th at the 4th German Chess Federation tournament. That event was won by Isidor Gunsberg. In 1888, he tied for 3rd-4th in the 4th British Chess Federation championship in Bradford, England, behind Gunsberg and Mackenzie. In 1889, he tied for 3rd-5th in the 5th British Chess Federation championship, held in London. In 1889, he took 3rd in the 3rd Irish Chess Association tournament in Dublin. In 1892, he tied for 1st with Blackburne in the North of Ireland Congress in Belfast. In 1892, he took 2nd, behind Emanuel Lasker, in the 7th British Chess Federation Congress. In 1895, he took 12th-14th at Hastings. In 1900, he took 2nd-3rd in the London City Club Invitation tourney, behind Teichmann. He was the author of The Principles of Chess (1894), The Art of Chess (1895), Chess Openings (1897), and Social Chess (1900). He was also the chief annotator of the British Chess Magazine. He died in Essex on January 15, 1905 at the age of 55.


The youngest player to gain a master rating (2200) is Hikaru Nakamura in 1998 at age 10 years and 79 days. In 2001 he became America’s youngest International Master at age 13. Other young masters include Vinay Bhat (10 years, 176 days), Jordy Mont-Reynaud (10 years, 209 days), Stewart Rachels (11 years, 10 months), Ilya Gurevich (12 years, 3 months), John Jarecki (12 years, 6 months), and Jon Litvinchuk (12 years, 7 months). The oldest player to become a master was Oscar Shapiro, at age 74.

Mastrovasilis, Athanasios (1979- )

Grandmaster from Greece. His FIDE rating is 2495.

Mastrovasilis, Dimitrios (1983- )

Grandmaster from Greece. His FIDE rating is 2563.

Matanovic, Aleksandar (1930- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1955) and chief editor of Chess Informant since 1966. He has won the Yugoslav championship 3 times (1962, 1969, 1978). He played in 16 Yugoslav championships. From 1990 to 1994 he was FIDE Executive Deputy President.

Vaitonis – Matanovic, Munich 1958
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f3 O-O 6.Be3 e5 7.Nge2 c6 8.Qb3 Nbd7 9.O-O-O Qa5 10.g4 Rb8 11.h3 b5 12.cxb5 cxb5 13.Kb1 b4 14.Na4 exd4 15.Nxd4 Ne5 16.f4 Bd7 17.fxe5 Nxe4 18.Nb5 Rxb5 19.Bxb5 Bxb5 0-1


There are 8 different ways to mate in two moves and 355 different ways to mate in three moves.

Matera, Salvatore (1951- )

Winner of the 1967 U.S. Junior Invitational. Winner of the Marshall Chess Club Championship several times. He took 8th-9th in the 1977 U.S. Championship.

Mathematicians and Chess

Mathematicians and chess players include C.H.O’D. Alexander, Adolf Anderssen, Magdy Assem, Christoph Bandelow, John Beasley, Otto Blathy, Hans Boumeester, Nathan Divinksy, Noam Elkies, Arpad Elo, Max Euwe, Ed Formanek, William Hartston, Paul Keres, Vladimir Kovacevic, Martin Kreuzer, Emanuel Lasker, Lev Loshinski, Vania Mascioni, J. Mauldon, Jonathan Mestel, Walter Morris, John Nunn, Nick Patterson, Miodrag Petkovic, Ken Regan, Hans-Peter Rehm, Ken Rogoff, Duncan Suttles.

Mathematics and Chess

The number of distinct chess positions after White’s first move is 20 (16 pawn moves and 4 knight moves). There are 400 distinct chess positions after two moves (first move for White, followed by first move for Black). There are 5,362 distinct chess positions or 8,902 total positions after three moves (White’s second move). There are 71,852 distinct chess positions or 197,742 total positions after four moves (two moves for White and two moves for Black). There are 809,896 distinct positions or 4, 897,256 total positions after 5 moves. There are 9,132,484 distinct positions or 120,921,506 total positions after 6 moves (three moves for White and three moves for Black). The total number of chess positions after 7 moves is 3,284,294,545. The total number of chess positions is about 2x10 to the 46 power.

Mattison, Herman (1894-1932)

Latvian player of International Master strength. In 1924, he won the Latvian Championship and the World Amateur Championship, held in Paris. He led the Latvian team at the 1931 Olympiad, where he beat Alekhine.

Matulovic, Milan (1935- )

Grandmaster (1965) from Yugoslavia. In 1967 he took a losing move back from Bilek at the Sousse Interzonal, denying he had touched another piece and moving it. In 1970 he “lost” to Taimanov in the last round of the Palma de Mallorca Interzonal for a bribe of $300. Thus, Taimanov qualified for the Candidates’ Matches and played (and lost 6-0) Fischer. In 1971 he was sentenced to 9 months imprisonment for killing a woman by dangerous driving. His nickname was J’adoubovic.

Matulovic – Vincent, Yugoslavia 1954
1.e4 c5 2.d4 cxd4 3.c3 dxc3 4.Nxc3 Nc6 5.Nf3 d6 6.Bc4 Nf6 7.e5 dxe5 8.Qxd8+ Kxd8 9.Ng5 Kc7 10.Nxf7 Rg8 11.Nb5+ Kb8 12.Nxe5 Nxe5 12.Bf4 1-0

Maurian, Charles Amedee (1838-1912)

Born on May 21, 1838. He was the closest and life-long friend of Paul Morphy. They attended Spring Hill College in Mobile, Alabama together where Morphy taught Maurian how to play chess in 1853-54. In 1854, he defeated Paul Morphy in a match in New Orleans (+6-5=1), but at various piece odds. In 1858, he lost a match to Paul Morphy (+1-2=0). From 1858 to 1860, Maurian edited the chess column in the New Orleans Delta. In October, 1862, Maurian and Morphy sailed to Cuba on a Spanish steamboat, with the ultimate destination of Paris in 1863. In 1869, he lost a match to Paul Morphy (+2-6=0) at knight odds. All together, there are 75 known games between Maurian and Paul Morphy. From 1883 to 1890, he co-edited the chess column in the Times-Democrat. He moved to Paris in 1890. He died on December 2, 1912.

Mayet, Karl (1810-1868)

Born on August 11, 1810, lived in Berlin, and was the most original of the Berlin Pleiades. He was a barrister and a judge. In 1839, he defeated Jozsef Szen in a match with (+3-2=1). In 1845, he drew a match with Augustus Mongredien with (+3-3). In 1847, he defeated A. von der Goltz in a match (+14-9=1), but then lost a match with Wilhelm Hanstein (+5-12=1). In 1848, he lost a match to Daniel Harrwitz (+2-5=2). In the 1851 London International, he was knocked out in round 1 when he lost to Hugh Kennedy with two losses. In 1851, he lost a match to Adolf Anderssen in Berlin with 4 losses. In 1852, he lost a match to F. Deacon (2-5). In 1853, he took 3rd place in the first Berlin championship, behind Jean Dufresne and Max Lange. In 1853, he lost a match to Jean Dufresne (+5-7). In 1855, he lost to Anderssen (+6-14=1). In 1856, he lost to T. Wiegelmann (2-4) in the 1856 Berlin Knockout Tournament. In 1859, he lost a match to Anderssen (+1-7). In 1865, he lost a match to Anderssen (+2-5=1). In 1866, he lost a match to Gustav Neumann (-6=1).

McClain, L. Guthrie

Editor of the California Chess Reportre, the magaine for the California State Chess Federation for 25 years, from 1952 to 1977. It ended in 1977 when the California State Chess Federation was broken up into the Northern California Chess Federation and the Southern California Chess Federation.

McCormick, Edgar T. (1914-1991)

Participant of more U.S. Open chess tournaments than any other person (37 times). In World War II he was a cryptographer. He won the U.S. Amateur Championship in 1961, and again in 1990, at the age of 75. He won the Virginia state championship in 1941. He won the New Jersey championship twice.

McCormick – Moose, Chicago 1973
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.f4 d5 5.exd5 e4 6.d4 Bb6 7.Nge2 c6 8.dxc6 Nxc6 9.Be3 Ng4 10.Qd2 Nxe3 11.Qxe3 Nxd4 12.Qxe4+ Qe7 13.Qxe7+ Kxe7 14.Nd5+ Kd8 15.Nxb6 Nxc2+ 16.Kd2 Nxa1 17.Nxa8 Bf5 18.Rxa1 1-0

McDonnell (MacDonnell), Alexander (1798-1835)

England’s best chess player in the early 19th century, but born in Ireland. In 1825, he took lessons from William Lewis and joined the Westminster chess Club in London. From June through October 1834 he played a series of six matches with Louis-Charles de La Bourdonnais, but lost the match (he won 27 games, drew 13, and lost 37). He died of Bright’s disease at the age of 37. He was buried at Kensal Green cemetery in London. His tombstone has his name wrong. His last name on his tombstone is spelled MacDonnell, not McDonnell.

A. McDonnell – NN, England 1835
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Nc3 d6 5.d4 g5 6.h4 gxh4 7.Bxf4 Bg4 8.Nf3 Be7 9.Qd2 h3 10.Ng5 d5 11.Nxd5 Bh5 12.Nxc7+ Kf8 13.Nxf7 Bxf7 14.Bh6+ Kg8 15.Qg5 mate 1-0

Mchedishvili, Mikhail (1979- )

Grandmaster from Georgia. His FIDE rating is 2549.

McKay, Roderick (1952- )

Scottish Champion in 1971, 1974, 1976, 1979, and 1982.

McKelvie, Neil (1930- )

Played chess on 1st board at Cambridge. Winner of the Connecticut State Championship in 1962. Winner of the Manhattan Chess Club Championship in 1975. He has a Ph.D. in Chemistry.

McKenna, Patrick

Currently on death row at the Ely State Prison in Nevada for the 1979 strangulation of his Clark County jail cellmate, Jack Nobles, after an argument over a chess game. His lawyer was his brother, Ken McKenna.

McNab, Colin (1961- )

Grandmaster from Scotland. His FIDE rating is 2451. He won the Scottish Championship in 1983.

McShane, Luke (1984- )

At 13-years and two months, became the youngest Briton to achieve the title of International Master in

March, 1997. In 2000, at the age of 16, he became the youngest-ever Grandmaster from the UK. His FIDE rating is 2625.

McShane – Peter Nielsen, Hastings 2002
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.O-O Nxe4 5.Re1 Nd6 6.Nxe5 Be7 7.Bd3 O-O 8.Nc3 Nxe5 9.Rxe5 Bf6 10.Re3 Re8 11.Nd5 Bg5 12.f4 Bh6 13.Rh3 c6 14.Ne3 Ne4 15.Bxe4 Rxe4 16.Nf5 Qb6+ 17.d4 Bxf4 18.Qh5 h6 19.Bxf4 Rxf4 20.Re1 1-0

Mechanics Institute

Oldest chess meeting place in the United States, founded on December 11, 1854. Formerly the Mercantile Library in San Francisco, it was not incorporated as a chess club in its own right. In 1906 the great San Francisco earthquake destroyed the building. The new Mechanics Institute building was not built until 1909. During the intervening years, the chess club was not in existence. For that reason, the Manhattan Chess Club in New York City, which was established in 1882, claims to be “the oldest chess club in America in continuous existence.

Mecking, Henrique (1952- )

Brazilian grandmaster (1972). He was champion of Brazil in 1965 (age 13) and 1967, and won the South American Zonal at 14. During his candidates' match with Petrosian, he made a formal protest. He accused the formal world champion of kicking the table, shaking the chessboard, stirring the coffee too loudly, and rolling a coin on the table. He went to the referee twice to complain that Petrosian was breathing too loudly. Mecking kicked back at the table and made noises of his own. Petrosian responded by turning his hearing aid off. He won the Interzonals in 1972 and 1976. He retired from chess in 1978 when he contracted myasthenia gravis, a debilitating muscle disease. He returned to chess in 1991. He learned chess at the age of 6.

K. Smith – Mecking, San Antonio 1972
1.e4 c5 2.d4 cxd4 3.c3 dxc3 4.Nxc3 Nc6 5.Nf3 d6 6.Bc4 a6 7.O-O Nf6 8.a3 e6 9.Qe2 h6 10.Rd1 e5 11.Nd5 Be7 12.Be3 Nxd5 13.exd5 Nb8 14.Bd5 O-O 15.Bxc6 Bg5 0-1

Medina-Garcia, Antonio Angel (1919-2003)

Spanish International Master (1950). He was Spanish Champion in 1944, 1945, 1947, 1949, 1952, 1963, and 1964. He tied for last place at the 1955 Goteborg Interzonal.

Medina – Saemisch, Madrid 1943
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 d4 4.Nf3 Nc6 5.Nbd2 Be6 6.g3 Qd7 7.Bg2 Nge7 8.O-O Ng6 9.a3 Be7 10.b4 O-O-O 11.Bb2 Bh3 12.b5 Ncxe5 13.Qa4 Bxg2 14.Kxg2 Nxf3 15.exf3 Bc5 16.Rad1 Qf5 17.Nb3 Rd6 18.Nd2 Nf4+ 19.gxf4 Rh6 0-1

Medley, George Webb (1826-1898)

English player from London. In 1847, he lost a match with Daniel Harrwitz (+7-11=0). In 1848, he lost a match with Howard Staunton (+1-6=3). In 1849, he defeated Henry Bird in a match (+4-2=0). In 1849, he took 2nd place at the Ries’ Divan knockout tournament in London. He had to beat his brother, John R, Medley, in the play-off for 2nd place. The winner was Henry Buckle. In 1850, he defeated Augustus Mongredien in a match (+3-2=0). In 1858, he lost a match to Paul Morphy in London (+2-3=0). In 1860, he lost a match to Ignatz Kolisch (+0-2-2). Against Medley, Kolisch sometimes took two hours for three moves. After this match, there was a push to have a time limit in chess, which led to the introduction of sand glasses and clocks in chess.

Mednis, Edmar (1937-2002)

Latvian-born American grandmaster (1980) who took 2nd place in the 1955 World Junior Championship, behind Boris Spassky. He wrote 26 chess books and hundreds of chess articles. He was trained as a chemical engineer, then became a stock broker. He was the first player to beat Bobby Fischer in a U.S. Championship. It wasn’t the United States Chess Federation, it was Puerto Rican Chess Federation that formerly proposed him for the Grandmaster title.

Mednis – Hanauer, New York 1974
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.Nf3 Nge7 6.O-O d5 7.cxd5 Nxd5 8.Nxe5 Nxc3 9.Nxc6 Nxd1 10.Nxd8 Nxb2 11.Nxb7 Rb8 12.Bxb2 Bxb2 13.Rab1 Bf6 14.Nd6+ (14...cxd6 15.Rxb8) 1-0

Meduna, Eduard (1950- )

Czech Grandmaster (1987).

Menchik-Stevenson, Vera (1906-1944)

World Woman Champion (1927-1944) Vera Menchik defended her title six times, scoring 78 wins, 4 draws, and only 1 loss. In 1927 she won the first Women's World Chess Championship with 10 1/2 out of 11. She played in her first world championship as a Russian, the next five as a Czech, and the last one as a Briton. She died in Kent in June 1944 after a German V-1 rocket hit her home (the bomb shelter in the garden remained intact), killing her mother and her sister, Mrs. Olga Menchik Rubery (world challenger in 1935 and 1937). Vera's husband, R.H.S. Stevenson, was the secretary of the British Chess Federation who died in 1943. At the time of her death, Vera was serving on the editorial staff of Chess as games editor. When she died, there was not another world’s women champion until 1950.

Janecek – Menchik, Buenos Aires 1939
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 c6 4.Nc3 e6 5.Bg5 Nd7 6.e3 Qa5 7.Nd2 Bb4 8.Qc1 Ne4 9.Nxe4 dxe4 10.a3 Bxd2+ 11.Qxd2 Qxg5 0-1

Mengarini, Ariel (1919-1998)

American chess master, author, and medical doctor (psychiatrist for the Veterans Administration). In 1940 he won the championship of Washington D.C. In 1943 he won the U.S. Amateur chess championship with a perfect 11-0

score. He played in several US chess championships. He took last place in the 1954 US Championship (2 wins, 1 draw, 10 losses). He popularized the opening 1.e4 e5 2.a3, sometimes known as Mengarini’s opening.


The best of the automations. It was operated from another room by electro-mechanical means. It entered the County Chess Association held in England in 1878 and won. Isidor Gunsberg (1854-1930) was the operator. He operated it from the cellar of the tournament hall. Mephisto was built by Charles Godfrey Gumpel. Mephisto was shown for 12 months only and then broken up. When playing with ladies it would obtain a winning position and then lose the game, offering to shake hands afterwards. Mephisto was first exhibited at the Westminster Aquarium in London in 1876.

Mestel, Andrew Jonathan (1957- )

English Grndmaster (1982). In 1974, he won the World Cadet (under 18) Championship. He won the British Championship in 1976, 1983, and 1988. He is also a Grandmaster in Problem-Solving.


In the 1930s the Mexican government offered all foreign chess masters appointments as chess instructors in the Army. Kostic was made a Colonel. Alekhine and Capablanca did not accept their rank. Reuben Fine and Kashdan were made Lieutenants.

Michell, Reginald (1873-1938)

British Amateur Champion in 1902. He worked in the Admiralty. His wife, Edith, was British Women’s Champion in 1931, 1932, and 1935.

Mieses, Jacques (1865-1954)

Born Jakob Mieses in Leipzig but he changed his name to sound more elegant. He fled Germany just before World War II, after living in Germany for 73 years. He became a naturalized British citizen in the 1940s. He was the first British player to receive the Grandmaster title (1950). When he was in his 84, Jacques played a game against the Dutch master, Van Forrest, who was 86. It was a clock game between two players whose combined ages were 170 years. After he had won, Mieses rose from the board and said, "Youth has been victorious." He was still giving simultaneous displays in his mid 80s.

Mieses – Oehquist, Nuremberg 1895
1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qd8 4.d4 Nc6 5.Nf3 Bg4 6.d5 Ne5? (6...Nb8) 7.Nxe5 Bxd1 8.Bb5+ c6 9.dxc6 (threatening 9...c7 Qd7 10.Bxd7 mate) 1-0

Mieses, Samuel (1841-1884)

Uncle of Jacques Mieses. He was a player of master class. He studied medicine at the University of Breslau (now Wroclaw, Poland). He was a chess pupil of Adolf Anderssen. In 1867, he lost a match with Anderssen in Breslau (+0-3=1). In 1871, he won a tournament at Bad Ems, Germany (+4-0=0) and he tied for 1st with Adolf Anderssen at the first Middle German Chess Congres in Leipzig (4 wins and 1 draw). In 1872, he lost a match with Hans Von Minckwitz in Leipzig (+1-3=5).

Mikenas, Vladas (1910- )

Estonian-born Lithuanian International Master (1950) and honorary Grandmaster (1987). He played on five Lithunain Olympiad teams from 1931 to 1939. He was the champion of the Baltic Republics in 1965.

Mikhalchishin, Adrian (1954- )

Russian Grandmaster (1978) now living in Slovenia. His FIDE rating is 2526.

Mikhalevski, Victor (1972- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2572.

Miladinovic, Igor (1974- )

Yugoslav chess player and 1993 World Junior Chess Champion. He later moved to Greece.

Psakhis – Miladinovic, Moscow 1994
1.c4 e6 2.Nf3 d5 3.d4 Nf6 4.g3 Be7 5.Bg2 O-O 6.O-O c6 7.Nc3 Nbd7 8.Qd3 b6 9.e4 Ba6 10.b3 dxc4 11.bxc4 e5 12.Rd1 Qc7 13.dxe5 Nxe5 14.Nxe5 Qxe5 14.Bb2 Qe6 16.e5 Ng4 17.Re1 Rad8 18.Qe4 Bc5 0-1

Miles, Anthony (Tony) John (1955-2001)

The first English-born player to become a grandmaster for over-the-board play, in 1976 (Jacques Mieses of England was awarded the GM title in 1950, but he was a naturalized citizen). He was born on April 23, 1955 in Birmingham, England. . He won the British Under-14 title in 1968 and the British Under-21 title in 1971. In 1973, he finished 2nd in the World Junior Championship in Teesside, behind Alexander Beliavsky, who he beat. He won the World Junior Championship (World Under-20 Championship) at Manila in 1974 and became an International Master. He entered the University of Sheffield to study mathematics, but dropped out to concentrate on chess. In 1975 he agreed to a draw against Stewart Reuben without making a move. This was the first time a game was agreed drawn in International competition without making a single move, thus making it the shortest game ever played. In 1976, the Britiish Chess federation, who asked Miles to send a cable if he became a grandmaster, received a telegram with the words” :A cable. Tony Miles.” At the 1980 European Team Championships, he defeated world champion Anatoly Karpov as Black with 1...a6 and called it the Birmingham Defense after his home town and St. George’s Defense in honor of his birthday on April 23 (St George Day). In 1982, he won the British championship. In 1987 he moved to the United States. In 1988 he played in the US Championship. But took last place. In 1990, he moved to Australia and played in the 1991 Australian Championship. He later moved back to England. In the 1990s, he won the Capablanca Memorial in Havana three times. He played in the 1979, 1985, 1987, and 1990 Interzonals. He once defeated the World Othello Champion at his own game. He received an Honorary Master of Arts Degree for chess from Sheffield University. He died on November 11 or 12, 2001 at the age of 46. He died of heart failure caused by diabetes. His body was found at his home in Harborne, Birmingham after a friend called on him to take him to a bridge club. Miles played in 8 Olympiads for England. He was divorced twice and had no children.

Gallagher – Miles, USA 1990
1.e4 Nc6 2.Nc3 e5 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.d3 Na5 5.f4 Nxc4 6.dxc4 Bb4 7.Nf3 Nxe4 8.fxe5 Nxc3 9.Qd2 Nxa2 10.c3 Nxc1 11.cxb4 Nb3 0-1

Miles-Keene Incident

In 1987, Tony Miles made accusations to the British Chess Federation (BCF) about Raymond Keene over payments made by the BCF to Keene for acting as Miles’s second (assistant) at the Turin Interzonal in 1985. Miles said that Keene had not assisted him. It took a long time to investigate this and Miles became increasingly obsessive about it. On September 28, 1987, Miles decided that the only solution was to talk to British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher about the incident. In a very agitated state, he was arrested after midnight in Downing Street and eventually hospitalized for two months from a mental breakdown.

Milev, Zdravko (1929- )

Bulgarian International Master (1952). He was Bulgarian Champion in 1952, 1960, and 1961.

Milic, Borislav (1925-1986)

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1977). He played in 15 Yugoslav championships.

Milner-Barry, Sir Philip Stuart (1906-1995)

English player of International Master strength who was one of the British code-breakers during World War II along with Alan Turing and Hugh Alexander. He later became Under-Secretary of the Treasury in England.

Milner-Barry – Wade, England 1946
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.Nf3 Ngf6 6.Bd3 b6 7.Nxf6+ Nxf6 8.Qe2 Bb7 9.Bg5 Be7 10.O-O-O O-O 11.h4 c5 12.Kb1 Qc7 13.Rh3 Rfd8 14.dxc5 Qxc5 15.Re1 Rac8 16.Ne5 h6 17.g4 Nd5 18.Nxf7 Kxf7 19.Qxe6+ Kf8 20.Bh7 (threatening 21.Qg8 mate) 1-0

Milos, Gilberto (1963- )

Brazilian Grandmaster (1988). He was Brazilian Champion in 1984 and 1985.

Milov, Vadim (1972- )

Grandmaster from Switzerland. His FIDE rating is 2645.


First known U.S. city to conduct chess classes on its playgrounds, with instructors moving from playground to playground, teaching chess (1938). The Milwaukee Chess Club was organized in 1857. The first city championship was held in 1922, won by Arpad Elo.

Minasian, Artashes (1967- )

Armenian grandmaster and winner of the 58th and last USSR Championship, held in Moscow in 1991. His prize was a gold medal and a new car fresh from the "Lada" factory. The USSR championship was an 11-round Swiss. Twenty-seven Grandmasters and 29 International Masters participated, won by an untitled player. He won the 1998 New York Open.

Minckwitz, Johannes (1843-1901)

German chess master who wrote several chess columns, magazines, and books. He threw himself under an electric train which cut off both his arms. He died five days later.

Steinitz – Minckwitz, Baden-Baden 1870
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4 exf4 4.d4 Qh4+ 5.Ke2 b6 6.Nb5 Ba6 7.a4 Qh5+ 8.Nf3 Bxb5+ 9.axb5 Qxb5+ 10.Kf2 Qh5 11.Bxf4 Nf6 12.e5 Nd5 13.Bg3 Qh6 14.Qe2 Be7 15.Qe4 Qe6 16.Bc4 Nf6 17.Qe2 Ng4+ 18.Kf1 Qxc4 (19.Qxc4 Ne3+ and 20...Nxc4) 0-1

Minev, Nokalay (1931- )

International Master (1960). He was Bulgarian Champion in 1953, 1965, and 1966. He now lives in Seattle.

Minic, Dragoljub (1937- )

Yugoslav International Master (1964). Yugoslav Champion in 1962.

Mitkov, Nikola (1971- )

Macedonia’s first Grandmaster (1992).

Miton, Kamil (1984- )

Grandmaster (2002) from Poland. In 1996, he won the World Under-12 Championship. He was 2nd in the World Under-14 Championship in 1997 and 2nd in the World Under-20 Championship in 2000. He is a three-time Polish Junior Champion. He won the World Open in 2002 and 2005. He tied for 1st in the 2005 North American Open.

Mohr, Stefan (1967- )

German Grandmaster (1989).

Moiseenko, Alexander (1980- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2664.

Moiseev, Oleg (1925- )

Russian International Master (1970). He was Moscow champion in 1967.

Mokry, Karel (1959- )

Czech Grandmaster (1984). He won the Czech Championship in 1995.

Mont-Reynaud, Jordy (1983- )

In 1992, Jordy was the National Primary School Scholastic Champion. In 1993, 10-year-old Jordy Mont-Reynaud took 2nd place in the World Youth Championship in Slovakia (behind Bacrot). On April 13, 1994 he became America’s youngest master at the age of 10 years, 7 months. In 1999 he won the US Junior Open. He also took the silver medal in the 1999 Mind Sports Olympiad Junior Championship.

Vinay Bhat – Jordy Mont-Reynaud, Cupertino 1991
1.e4 c5 2.d4 cxd4 3.c3 dxc3 4.Nxc3 Nc6 5.Nf3 d6 6.Bc4 e6 7.Be3 a6 8.a4 Be7 9.O-O Nf6 10.Re1 Ng4 11.Qc2 Nge5 12.Bd3 Nb4 13.Qe2 Nbxd3 0-1

Monticelli, Mario (1902- )

Italian International Master (1950) and honorary Grandmaster (1985). He won the Italian Championship in 1929, 1934, and 1939.


Third James Bond novel by Ian Fleming (1908-1964), published in 1955, which contains references to Paul Morphy. The movie was released in 1979.

Moore, Jared (1893-1995)

Oldest chess player to play postal chess. He was active in postal chess until he was 100 years old. He died at the age of 101. He was also an active certified braillist until the last year of his life. He produced more than 15,000 pages of Braille for libraries, including the Library of Congress. He started playing postal chess in 1960, at the age of 67, and continued until 1994, at the age of 100.

Morgado, Juan (1947- )

Correspondence Grandmaster (1983). He finished 2nd (behind Palciauskas) in the 10th World Correspondence Championship of 1978-1984.

Vicondo – Morgado, Correspondence 1967
1.e4 e5 2.f4 Bc5 3.Nf3 d6 4.c3 Nf6 5.d4 exd4 6.e5 dxe5 7.fxe5 Nd5 8.cxd4 Bb4+ 9.Bd2 Ne3 10.Qa4+ Nc6 11.Bxb4 Bd7 12.Kf2 Nxd4 13.Qa3 Nd1+ 14.Kg1 Bc6 15.Nbd2 Bxf3 16.Nxf3 Nxf3+ 17.gxf3 Qd4+ 18.Kg2 Ne3+ 0-1

Morovic Fernandez, Ivan (1963- )

Chilean Grandmaster (1986). He won the Clilean Championship in 1981.

Morozevich, Alexander (1977- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2707.

Morrison, Martin (1947- )

First president of the U.S. Chess Journalists (AUSCJ), in 1972. He was the first technical director of the U.S. Chess Federation (1973). He was named Executive Director in 1977 when Ed Edmondson retired. He never played a rated game of chess. He was the author of The Official Rules of Chess and chairman of the FIDE rules commission.

Morphy, Paul (1837-1884)

The Pride and Sorrow of Chess. He won the First American Chess Congress in 1857. He imagined himself persecuted by his relatives and went into a state of seclusion. He thought his food was poisoned or that someone was out to kill him. He once attacked a person in the street and challenges him to a duel to the death to settle an imagined wrong. He had a fetish with women's shoes. Morphy had hats and cigars named after him. He was the first sports figure to issue a commercial endorsement when he declared of a watch, "I have examined the contents of this watch and find it to be made of 100 percent genuine machinery." When he arrived in Paris to play Anderssen, he was suffering from the flu. His medical treatment consisted of being leeched. He lost four pints of blood and was too weak to leave his hotel bed. So, he played Anderssen from his hotel room and won 7-2. When he returned to New York, he was greeted by Longfellow, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Samuel Morse, and John van Buren, the former President's son. Van Buren toasted Morphy as 'The Chess Champion of the World.' It was the first time that expression had been used. His most famous game was played at an opera house with a duke and a count.

Morphy – Duke of Brunswick and Count Isouard, Paris, 1858 Philidor’s Defense
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 Bg4 4.dxe5 Bxf3 5.Qxf3 dxe5 6.Bc4 Nf6 7.Qb3 Qe7 8.Nc3 [8.Bxf7+ Qxf7 9.Qxb7 is simpler] 8...c6 9.Bg5 b5 10.Nxb5 cxb5 11.Bxb5+ Nbd7 12.O-O-O Rd8 13.Rxd7! Rxd7 14.Rd1 Qe6 15.Bxd7+ Nxd7 16.Qb8+!! Nxb8 17.Rd8 mate 1-0

Morphy – Bottin, Paris 1858
1.e5 e5 2.c3 Nf6 3.d4 Nxe4 4.dxe5 Bc5 5.Qg4 Nxf2 6.Qxg7 Rf8 7.Bg5 f6 8.exf6 Rxf6 9.Bxf6 Be7 10.Qg8+ 1-0

Mortimer, James (1833-1911)

American player, journalist and dramatist. For a time, he worked in the US diplomatic service. While reporting on the Sebastian Chess Tournament in 1991, he died in Spain. He was once arrested for refusing to reveal the author of an allegedly libelous article. Once inside prison, he taught his fellow inmates how to play chess.

Morton, Harold (1906-1940)

Former champion of New England, who lived in Rhode Island. He played in the 1936 Us Chess Championship, but did poorly. In 1940 he died in a car crash in Iowa when he hit a truck. His passenger, by chess master I.A. Horowitz, survived. The two were giving simultaneous chess exhibitions throughout the country.

Moscowitz, Jakob (1912- )

In 1939, he won the Manhattan Chess Club Championship.

Moskalenko, Viktor (1960- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2534.

Motwani, Paul (1962- )

Grandmaster from Scotland. His FIDE rating is 2503.

Motylev, Alexander (1979- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2675.

Mouret, Jacques-Francois (1787-1837)

Operator of The Turk from 1819 to 1824. He was one of 15 chess players who occupied the cramped innards of the machine over 85 years. He sold the secret of how The Turk operated to the Magazin Pittoresque in 1834. He was an alcoholic chess master who sold it to the Parisian tabloid for the price of a drink. This was the first authentic revelation of the Automaton's secret. In 1836, the magazine Palamede re-published Mouret's disclosures. He was a nephew of Philidor. He was a chess tutor to King Louis Philippe, who was king of France from 1830 to 1848.

Movsziszian, Karen (1963- )

Grandmaster from Armenia. His FIDE rating is 2439.

Muir, Walter (1905-1999)

Chess master and correspondence chess champion. In 1997 he wrote his autobiography, My 75 Year Chess Career. He died at the age of 95. He was considered the Dean of American Correspondence Chess. In 1925 he began to play correspondence chess and was an active player all his life. In 1971 he was awarded the International Correspondence Chess Master (ICCM) title. He was the first American correspondence player to defeat a Soviet correspondence player in international competition.

Munich 1936

Considered the extra Chess Olympiad. The German Chess Federation wanted to organize an Olympiad as a counterpart to the Olympic Games at Berlin. Munich was chosen since its local chess club was celebrating its centenary. But since the German Chess Federation was not part of FIDE, the event was not recognized as belonging to the official series of Olympiads. Twenty-two countries and 208 participants entered. A total of 1680 games were played in this event of teams with eight players and two reserves. Hungary won the gold medal without conceding a single drawn match. Poland took the silver medal and Germany took the bronze medal.

Murder and chess

In 1960 a sailor got in a fight with a spectator in a Greenwich Village bar when the spectator criticized the sailor's chess game. The sailor struck the spectator with a broken beer bottle and struck a jugular vein. The sailor was eventually acquitted of murder and charged with accidental death instead. In 1962 Abe Turner, a chess master, was stabbed to death by Theodore Smith at the office of Chess Review magazine. In 1964 Raymond Weinstein, a chess master, killed an 83-year old man in a nursing home. He was judged mentally ill and is confined to Ward’s Island for the mentally ill. In 1989 a Soviet scientist killed another Soviet scientist in Antarctica after a chess game argument. In 1991 Patrick McKenna was sentenced to die in Nevada for killing a jail cellmate after an argument over a chess game. In 2000 in Puoghkeepsie, New York, Laurence Douglas stabbed Craig Williams to death over a chess game. Williams beat Douglas in a chess game that had a $5 wager. Williams took a $5 bill from Douglas after the game and Douglas stabbed Williams 16 times.

Murey, Yacov (1941- )

Moscow-born Israeli Grandmaster (1987). He later settled in France.

Murray, Harold (1868-1955)

Chess historian. In 1913, he wrote A History of Chess. His father was the first editor of the Oxford English Dictionary.

Murshed, Niaz (1957- )

Won the Bangladesh championship at age 12 years and 309 days, becoming the youngest winner of a national federation. He won the Bangladesh championship at age 13, 14, and 15 as well. In 1987, he became the first grandmaster from Bangladesh at the age of 20. He is now a businessman and no longer active in chess.

Muzio Gambit

A gambit in the King’s Gambit where the knight is sacrificed. The moves are 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.Bc4 g4 5.O-O. The opening received the name Muzio Gambit from a book by Jacob Sarratt, who blundered in the translation of the observer who first saw the move, when Saratt translated the works of Damiano and Salvio in 1813. The move was observed by Mutio (not Muzio), a third class player in the Naples Academy in the 1600s, who says he saw the move played between Girolamo (Geronimo) Cascio, a priest from Piazza, and another player.


Bobby Fischer's modern classic which almost never got published. In 1964 Bobby withdrew his manuscript before it went to press. He had to buy his way out of the contract with Simon & Schuster. He was concerned about revealing his opening strategy. Five years later, in 1969, he updated his original work of 52 games to My 60 Memorable Games and had Larry Evans collaborate on the book. Fischer's original title was My Life in Chess, then My Memorable Games – 60 Tournament Struggles. In 1992 Bobby Fischer accused the Soviets of keeping his royalties from his book, and said he would not play Kasparov unless the royalties were paid.

Nabokov, Vladimir (1899-1977)

Russian-born American novelist. In 1930, he wrote Zashchita Luzhina (Luzhin’s Defense), under the pseudonym V. Sirin. It was about a ches master, Aleksandr Luzhin, who became obsessed with the game and loses his mind. The book appeared in English in 1964. Nabokov used chess as a theme in many of his novels. Nabokov had a great interest in chess and composed several chess problems. In 1955, he wrote : Lolita, his most famous novel.

Naiditsch, Arkadi (1985- )

Grandmaster from Germany. In 2004 he was accused of using a computer in an Internet tournament and was disqualified. He won the 2005 Super-GM tournament at Dortmund. He was the bottom seed and finished ahead of Topalov, Bacrot, Svidler, Van Wely, Kramnik, Adams, Leko, Sutovsky, and Nielsen.

Naiditsch – Djukic, Spain 2001
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Qc7 5.Nb5 Qb8 6.Bd3 Nf6 7.f4 e5 8.O-O a6 9.N5c3 exf4 10.Nd5 Nxd5 11.exd5 Bc5+ 12.Kh1 Ne7 13.Bxf4 d6 14.Qe2 b5 15.Nd2 Qb7 16.Ne4 Qxd5 17.Rad1 Qe6 18.Bxd6 Bb6 19.Bxe7 Kxe7 20.Rxf7+ 1-0

Najdorf, Miguel (1910-1997)

Polish-born player who stayed in Argentina after the outbreak of World War II and became a naturalized citizen of Argentina five years later. Najdorf escaped the Holocaust, but he lost his wife, child, parents and four brothers who died on concentration camps. He changed his first name from Mieczyslaw to Mendel to Miguel. In 1943 he played 40 games blindfolded. He then played 222 opponents simultaneously, over-the board, winning 202, drew 12 and lost 8 games. In January, 1947 he played 45 opponents simultaneously blindfolded in Sao Paulo,Brazil. After 23 hours and 30 minutes of play, he won 39 games, drew 4, and lost 2. He put on this world record exhibition in hopes it would be reported in Europe and that some of his family might read about it and get in touch with him, None did so. He became an Argentine citizen in 1944. He won the Argentine championship 8 times. His nickname was El Grande.

Najdorf – Piazzi, Argentina 1951
1.d4 d5 2.c4 c5 3.cxd5 Qxd5 4.Nf3 cxd4 5.Nc3 Qd8 6.Qxd4 Qxd4 7.Nxd4 e5 8.Ndb5 Kd8 9.Be3 Nc6 10.O-O-O+ Bd7 11.g3 Nf6 12.Bh3 Be7 13.Rxd7+ Nxd7 14.Rd1 Ncb8 15.Nd5 g6 16.Nbc7 Bd6 17.Nxa8 b6 18.Bg5+ 1-0

Nakamura, Hikaru (1987- )

Youngest chess master, at age 10 years and 79 days. He achieved this record on February 26, 1997 at the Marshall Chess Club. The previous record for youngest master was Vinay Bhat and Jordy Mont-Reynaud. Nakamura was also the youngest player to beat an International Master, defeating IM Jay Bonin in 1997 at the age of 9. In 2001 he became the U.S. Junior Champion. In 2004, at the age of 16, he won the 2005 US Chess Championship in San Diego. He is the 2nd youngest to win it (Fischer won at 14). In 2005, he was selected as the 19th Frank P. Samford Chess Fellow.

Richardson – Nakamura, Bermuda 2002
1.e4 c5 2.d4 cxd4 3.Qxd4 Nc6 4.Qd1 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Be3 Bg7 7.Bc4 O-O 8.h4 h5 9.Qd2 Ne5 10.Bb3 d6 11.Nf3 Neg4 12.Bg5 b5 13.Nh2 b4 14.Nd5 Nxh2 15.Rxh2 Nxd5 16.Qxd5 Bxb2 17.Rd1 Bc3+ 18.Kf1 Qc7 19.Qd3 a5 20.f4 Ba6 0-1

Napier, William (1881-1952)

English-born player. He family moved to Brooklyn, New York when he was 5. In 1896, at the age of 15, he won the Brooklyn Chess Club Championship. He won the first British Chess Federation chess championship in 1904. He became a U.S. citizen in 1908. He married Harry Pillsbury’s niece. He gave up chess to become an insurance executive and was vice-president of the Scranton Life Insurance Company.

Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821)

Played the Turk Automaton in 1809 at the Schoenbrunn Castle in Austria. He may have played the Turk (Allgaier) at least three times, losing every time. When he lost, he knocked all the pieces from the board and yelled, "Bagatelle," then stormed out of the room. When Napoleon died, he willed that his heart be cut out and be placed inside a chess table.

National Chess Centre

Largest chess club in London, with over 700 members, until it was bombed by the Germans in September, 1940. The club manager was Sonja Graf. When the club was bombed, there was little chess activity in London until after the war.

National Chess Federation of the U.S.A (NCFUSA)

Formed in the United States in 1926. About the only thing it did was organize the American Olympiad team every two years. It merged with the American Chess Federation in 1939 to form the United States Chess Federation.

National Scholastics

The first National High School Championship began in 1969. The first National Junior High began in 1973. The first National Elementary began in 1976.

Naumkin, Igor (1965- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2444.

Navara, David (1985- )

Grandmaster from the Czech Republic. His FIDE rating is 2663.

Neale, Joseph (1950- )

Postal worker who was dismissed from a part-time city job coaching chess at a community center in Riverside, California in 1994. He took his grudge to City Hall where he shot the mayor, three members of the Council, and two policemen in 1998. Eleven other people sustained minor injuries from flying glass. None of the shots were fatal.

Neckham, Alexander (1157-1217)

Author of the earliest British reference to chess. He wrote a description of the game in a chapter of his book De Naturis Rerum (On the Nature of Things) in 1180. He may have been introduced to chess while visiting Arab centers of culture in Spain and Mesopotamia. Neckham was a foster-brother of King Richard I and a church abbot. He condemned the game as a waste of time.

Nedev, Trajce (1973- )

Grandmaster from Macedonia. His FIDE rating is 2530.

Negi, Parimarjan (1993- )

Parimarjan Negi was born on Feb 9, 1993 in India. At Hasting is 2005/2006 he had a performace rating of 2568 and achieved a Grandmaster norm at the age of 12. In July 2005, he became the world’s youngest International Master. He made his final GM norm at the age of 13 years, 3 months, and 22 days. He became India’s youngest Grandmaster. He became the 2nd youngest GM in history. Sergey Karjakin became a GM at the age of 12 years and 7 months.

Negyesy, Gyorgy (1893-1992)

Hungarian master who died just short of his 99th birthday. He was the longest-lived master chess player.

Nei, Iivo (1931- )

Estonian International Master. He has won the Estonian championship 8 times (1951, 1952, 1956, 1960, 1961, 1971, 1974). He won the championship of the Baltic Republics in 1961, 1963, and 1964.

Nei – Ippolito, France 1994
1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5 g6 3.Nd2 Bg7 4.e3 d6 5.Bd3 c5 6.c3 O-O 7.h3 Nc6 8.Ne2 e5 9.dxc5 dxc5 10.Ne4 Qe7 11.N2g3 b6 12.Qf3 1-0

Nemet, Ivan (1943- )

Swiss Grandmaster (1978). He was born in Yugoslavia. He was Yugoslav champion in 1979. His FIDE rating is 2353.

Nevednichy, Vladislav (1969- )

Grandmaster from Romania. His FIDE rating is 2583.

Neverov, Valery (1964- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2572.

New York 1857

Also known as the First American Chess Congress, it was the first American chess tournament to determine the national champion. It was won by Paul Morphy with 14 wins, 1 loss, and 3 draws.

New York State Championship

America's longest running state championship which began in 1878 (won by James R. Cox). In 1944 the New York State Championship was called off because IBM, who was to be the hosts, was requested by the U.S. government to cancel all conventions to reduce the burden of manning facilities for the war. Gata Kamsky won the 127th championship in 2005.

New Zealand

The first chess club in New Zealand was the Dunedin Chess Club, which was formed in 1863. The New Zealand Chess Association came into being in the 1870s.

Newnes, George (1851-1910)

Newspaper and magazine publisher (Tit-Bits, Review of Reviews, and Country Life). In 1892 he published The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle. He helped finance the early days of motion pictures. He was a member of the British Parliament. He sponsored a series (13) of Anglo_American cable chess matches from 1895 to 1911. The winner won the Newnes Trophy cup. Great Britain won the trophy permanently in 1911 when it won the match for the 3rd time in a row. He was President of the British Chess Club.


The oldest newspaper chess column still in existence runs in The Illustrated London News, which first appeared in 1842. The first newspaper chess column appeared in the Liverpool Mercury in 1813 and continued until 1819.

Nezhmetdinov, Rashid (1912-1974)

First USSR master in chess and checkers. In 1949 he won the Russian chess championship and immediately after, took 2nd in the Russian checkers championship. He wrote the first chess book in the Tatar language. He won the Russian chess championship 5 times. He was Tal’s trainer during Tal’s world championship matches.

Nickoloff, Bryon (1956-2004)

Canadian International Master (1978). In 1999 he was told that he had terminal cancer (Hodgkin’s Disease) and less than six months to live. He survived five years, playing chess to the very end. He won the Canadian Open in 1992 and 1995 and the Canadian Championship in 1995. He played six times on the Canadian Olympiad chess teams (1978, 1986, 1988, 1990, 1994, 1998). He was Pan-Am Open Champion in 1999.

Nickoloff – Morin, Vancouver BC 1974
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 e6 5.e3 c5 6.Bxc4 Be7 7.O-O O-O 8.Qe2 a6 9.dxc5 Bxc5 10.e4 h6 11.e5 Ne8 12.Bd3 f5 13.exf6 Nxf6 14.Ne4 Bb6 15.Ne5 Nbd7 16.Ng6 Nxe4 17.Nxf8 Qxf8 18.Bxe4 Qe7 19.Bf4 e5 20.Rae1 1-0

Nielsen, Peter Heine (1974- )

Grandmaster (1994) and Denmark’s highest rated chess player. He won the Danish Championship in 1996, 199, and 2001. In 2002/2003 he won the traditional Hastings tournament. He won the 2nd European Internet Championship in 2004. His FIDE rating is 2668.

Nielsen – Karjakin, Hastings 2002
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e4 c5 4.d5 Nf6 5.Nc3 b5 6.Bf4 Ba6 7.Nf3 b4 8.Bxb8 bxc3 9.Qa4+ Qd7 10.Qxa6 cxb2 11.Rb1 Rxb8 12.Bxc4 Rb6 13.Qa3 Nxe4 14.Rxb2 Qb7 15.Rxb6 Qxb6 16.O-O f6 17.Qa4+ Kd8 18.d6 e5 19.Be6 Qb7 20.Qa5+ 1-0

Niemeijer, Meindert (1902-1987)

Dutch lawyer, banker, managing director of an insurance company, chess historian and International Master for Chess Composition. He collected over 7,000 chess books for the Royal Hague Library for over 40 years. The chess collection is now known as the Van der Linde-Niemeijer Chess Collection at The Hague. He published 30 books on chess problems and authored over 600 chess problems. He started the Netherlands Problems Archives in 1925, which has over 50,000 problems today.

Nijboer, Friso (1965- )

Grandmaster from the Netherlands. His FIDE rating is 2529.

Nikolac, Juraj (1932- )

Grandmaster (1979) from Croatia. His FIDE rating is 2411.

Nikolaidis, Ioannis (1971- )

Grandmaster from Greece. His FIDE rating is 2522. He won the Greece championship in 2004.

Nikolic, Predrag (1960- )

Grandmaster (1983) from Bosnia and Herzegovina. He won the Yugoslav championship in 1980 and 1984. His FIDE rating is 2591.

Nikolic, Stanimir (1935- )

Grandmaster (1978) from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2284.

Nimzovich, Aron (1886-1935)

Founder of the hypermodern movement in chess and author of My System. He would stand

on his head during chess events and did exercises in the tournament room. After losing a game against Saemisch in Berlin, he jumped up on the table and yelled, "Why must I lost to this idiot?" He had business cards printed which read, 'A. Nimzovich: Candidate for the World Championship of Chess and Crown Prince of the Chess World." He once broke a leg while playing chess. He twisted his leg around the leg of his chair and then, having made his move, leaped up, only to crash to the floor in pain with a broken leg. In 1927, Nimzovich complained to tournament director Maroczy that Vidmar (Nimzovich’s best friend) had just pulled out some cigars and put it on the chess table. Maroczy asked why Nimzovich was so upset, since Vidmar had not started smoking anything. Nimzovich replied, “Yes, but the threat is more important than the execution.” He died of cancer at the age of 49. Some sources say that he died of syphilis, like Pillsbury. He was Russian champion in 1914 and Nordic champion in 1924 and 1934. In 1917, he was in the Baltic war zone and escaped force service by complaining that a fly was on his head. He then made his way to Berlin and changed his first name to Arnold as a precaution against anti-Semitism.

Nimzovich – Alapin, St Louis 1913
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.exd5 Nxd5 5.Nf3 c5 6.Nxd5 Qxd5 7.Be3 cxd4 8.Nxd4 a6 9.Be2 Qxg2 10.Bf3 Qg6 11.Qd2 e5 12.O-O-O exd4 13.Bxd4 Nc6 14.Bf6 Qxf6 15.Rhe1+ Be7 16.Bxc6+ Kf8 17.Qd8+ Bxd8 18.Re8 mate 1-0

Nisipeanu, Liviu-Dieter (1976- )

Grandmaster from Romania. His peak Elo rating is 2692. In 2005, he won the 6th European Individual Chess Championship.


Nescio Nomen, a Latin phrase meaning name unknown. It has been customary to use N.N. for the given name of an unknown person.

Nobel Prize winners and chessplayers

Samuel Becket (1969-Literature), Menachem Begin (1978-Peace), Willy Brandt (1971-Peace), Elias Canetti (1981-Literature), Winston Churchill (1953-Literature), John Cornforth (1975-Chemistry), Gerard Debreu (1983-Economics), Albert Einstein (1921-Physics), Richard Feynman (1965-Physics). William Golding (1983-Literature), John Harsanyi (1994-Economics), Henry Kissinger (1973-Peace), Sinclair Lewis (1930-Literature), Gabriel Garcia Marquez (1982-Literature), John Nash (1994-Economics), Boris Pasternak (1958-Literature), Sir Robert Robinson (1947-Chemistry), Bertrand Russell (1950-Literature), Anwar Sadat (1978-Peace), George Bernard Shaw (1925-Literature), Henryk Sienkiewicz (1905-Literature), Herbert Simon (1978-Economics), Isaac Singer (1978-Literature), Sir Frederick Soddy (1921-Chemistry), William Butler Yeats (1923-Literature), Woodrow Wilson (1919-Peace)

Nogueiras Santiago, Jesus (1959- )

Cuban Grandmaster (1979) who has won the Cuban championship 3 times (1978, 1984, 1991). He took 2nd place in the 1985 Taxco Interzonal Tournament, behind Timman and ahead of Tal. He took 15th (out of 16) in the 1985 Montpellier Candidates Tournament.

Non-stop chess

Roger Ling and Graham Croft set the non-stop playing world record of 200 hours in 1982.

Norwood, David (1968- )

Grandmaster from England. His FIDE rating is 2503.

Noteboom, Daniel (1910-1932)

Dutch player who scored well in the 1930 Hamburg Olympiad (11.5 out of 15) and the 1931-32 Hastings tournament (3rd place). His name is associated with the variation: 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 e6 4.Nf3 dxc4 5.a4 Bb4 6.e3 b5 7.Bd2 a5 (Voisin-Noteboom, Hamburg 1930). He was the first to introduce it into master play. This is also known as the Abrahams variation. He died of pneumonia at the age of 21.

Noteboom – Van Doesburgh, Netherlands 1931
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Nbd7 5.e3 c6 6.a3 Be7 7.Qc2 O-O 8.Nf3 a6 9.Rd1 Re8 10.Bd3 dxc4 11.Bxc4 b5 12.Bd3 h6 13.Bxf6 Nxf6 14.O-O Bb7 15.Ne4 Nxe4 16.Bxe4 f5 17.Bd3 Qb6 18.Rc1 Rac8 19.b4 Qd8 20.Ne5 a5 21.Qb3 Bd6 22.Bxf5 Qf6 23.Bb1 Bxe5 24.dxe5 Qxe5 25.Rc5 a4 26.Qa2 Qd6 27.Qc2 Rcd8 28.Qh7+ Kf8 29.Bg6 1-0

Nottingham 1936

The strongest tournament ever held on British soil. The tournament attracted world champion Max Euwe, former world champions Lasker, Capablanca, and Alekhine. And future world champion Botvinnik, It also had Reshevsky, Fine, Flohr, Bogoljubov, Vidmar, Tartakower. Botvinnik and Capablanca tied for first place. Euwe, Reshevsky, and Fine tied for 3rd place. 6th place went to Alekhine. 7th-8th place went to Lasker and Flohr. Vidmar took 9th place. After that were Tartakower, Bogoljubov, Tyler, Alexander, Thomas, and Winter. It was the first time that the Soviets achieved a major international success in chess. It was Lasker’s last tournament. The event took place in August, 1936.

Novikov, Igor (1962)

Grandmaster now living in the USA. He was born in the Ukraine. His peak FIDE rating is 2614.

Novikov, Stanislav (1985)

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2534.

Novotelnov, Nikolai (1911- )

Soviet International Master (1950). In 1942 he won the Leningrad championship. In 1947 he won the Russian Federation Republic Championship.

Nunn, John (1955- )

British Grandmaster (1978) who went to Oxford at age 15, graduated at 18, and got his doctorate in mathematics at 23 (dissertation on Algebraic Topology). In the 1984 Thessaloniki Olympiad, he received 3 gold medals: best score on board 2, best performance rating in the Olympiad, and winner of the problem-solving contest. His FIDE rating is 2617.

Nunn – Geogiev, Linares 1988
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nd3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.Ng5 h6 6.Ne6 Qa5+ 7.Bd2 Qb6 8.Bd3 fxe6 9.Qh5+ Kd8 10.Ba5 1-0

Nyback, Tomi (1985- )

Grandmaster from Finland. His FIDE rating is 2571.

O'Kelly de Galway, Alberic (1911-1980)

Belgium grandmaster (1956). In 1962 he became the first grandmaster of over-the-board and correspondence chess. He was winner of the 3rd World Correspondence Championship (1962-1965). He won the Belgium championship 12 times. He was chief arbiter in four world championship matches. In Belgium he was honored with the Golden Palm of the Order of the Crown. He could speak seven different languages. He was not a Count like some sources say. He died at the age of 70.

O’Kelly de Galway – Ramirez, Malaga 1963
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f3 O-O 6.Be3 Nc6 7.Qd2 a6 8.O-O-O Bd7 9.Bh6 Qb8 10.h4 b5 11.h5 Rd8 12.hxg6 fxg6 13.Bxg7 Kxg7 14.Qh6+ Kf7 15.e5 dxe5 16.Ne4 Nxd4 17.Ng5+ Ke8 18.Qxg6+ (18...hxg6 19.Rh8+) 1-0

Occupations of Chessplayers

Alexander code breaker

Berliner computer scientist

Bernstein lawyer

Bird accountant

Botvinnik electrical engineer

Burger, Karl M.D.

Byrne, D literature professor

Castaldi dentist

Commons real estate

Euwe math professor

Evans, William sea captain

Fine psychoanalyst

Formanek math professor

Grob portrait painter

Gulko psychologist

Harmonist ballet dancer

Hjartarson patent lawyer

Huebner papyrologist

Kevitz pharmacist and chemist

Kotov mechanical engineer

Lasker, Ed mechanical engineer

Lombardy priest

Maroczy math teacher

Mednis chemical engineer

Morphy lawyer

Najdorf insurance salesman and porcelain importer

Nunn math professor

Olafsson lawyer

Pfleger M.D.

Philidor musician

Reshevsky accountant

Rogoff Federal Reserve Board

Ruy Lopez priest

Schallopp stenographer

Soltis news reporter

Staunton Shakespeare scholar

Stoltz car mechanic

Taimanov concert pianist

Tarrasch M.D.

Tartakower lawyer

Tisdall chef

Troitsky forester

Znosko-Borovsky music critic

Ohman, Howard Elmer (1899-1968)

Winner of the Nebraska State Championship 25 times, from 1917 to 1940, 1942, and 1946. He was once ranked at the 7th highest rated player in the U.S.

Ohrid 1971

First Women’s Interzonal Tournament. It was won by Tatiana Zatulovskaya.

Olafsson, Fridrik (1935- )

Iceland's first Grandmaster (1958) and former FIDE president (1978-82). He is the Secretary General of the Icelandic Parliament. In 1955 he arrived late to participate in the annual Hastings tournament in

England. No rooms could be found for him so he spent his first night in a cell at the Hastings police station as a guest to the local police. His FIDE rating is 2452.

Bordversson – F. Olafsson, Iceland 1947
1.f4 e5 2.fxe5 d6 3.exd6 Bxd6 4.Nf3 Nc6 5.h3?? Bg3 mate 0-1

Olafsson, Helgi (1956- )

Grandmaster from Iceland. His FIDE rating is 2521.

Oldest Recorded Game

The oldest recorded game in existence comes from a 10th century manuscript. The oldest game recorded in the modern style is between Francisco de Castelliz and Narcisi Vinoles in the 15th century.

Oll, Lembit (1966-1999)

Estonian Grandmaster. He was Estonian champion in 1982. He committed suicide by jumping from his 4th story apartment in Tallinn on May 17, 1999. He was 33 years old.


The first unofficial chess Olympiad took place in Paris in 1924 at the same time as the 8th Sports Olympics. Czechoslovakia won that event. The first official Olympiad began in London in 1927 (won by Hungary). Prior to that, an Olympiad was held in Budapest in 1926 with the rules that only amateurs could participate. Only four teams showed up: Hungary, Yugoslavia, Romania, and Germany. The first Women's Olympiad was held in 1957. The first U.S. win over the USSR was in 1984 at Thessaloniki, Greece. At the 1976 Olympiad in Buenos Aires, a member of a Middle East team tried to buy one of the girls working at the site for $1 million. The offer was not take up. The oldest player to participate in an Olympiad is Gudju, at age 90 at the 1984 Olympiad in Thessaloniki. He is the sole survivor of the group that formed FIDE and played in the 1924 Paris Olympiad. The youngest participant of the Olympiad was 10 year-old Heidi Cueller of Guatemala, who played on their women's team in 1986 in Dubai. 11 year-old Schermann of the Virgin Islands played at Siegen in 1970. In 1982 12 year-old Kien Tjing-Joe played for Surinam. The US is the only country to defeat the USSR twice in the Chess Olympiad. In 1992 when the Soviet Union broke up, instead of one team, 12 of the 102 teams were from the previous Soviet Union. None of these countries finished with a minus score and three of the countries from the former Soviet Union took the Gold, Silver, and Bronze. The first woman to play on a man's team was Mary Gilchrist who played for Scotland in the 1937 Olympiad. In 1950 Madame Chade de Silans played for France. In 1994 the chess Olympiad was held in Moscow where crime was so bad that the captain of the Macedonian chess team was robbed of $7,000 inside a bank that was across the street from the playing center. The 35th Chess Olympiad in Bled in 2002 had 136 men’s teams and 92 women’s teams, the largest Olympiad ever.

Onischuk, Alexander (1975- )

Grandmaster, now living in the United States (immigrated to the US in 2001). In 1991, he took 2nd place in the World Youth under-16 championship. In 1995, he took 2nd place in the World Junior championship. He was the chess Olympiad silver medallist in 1996 and the bronze medallist in 1998. In 2000, he won the Ukrainian Zonal. He tied for 1st in the 2001 World Open. He is currently the highest rated chess player in the United States. In 2004, he played board 1 for the USA Olympiad team, placing fourth in the overall games.

Onischuk – Kovacevic, Leningrad 1991
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Nf3 g6 4.d4 exd4 5.Nd5 h6 6.Nxd4 Bg7 7.Nb5 Kf8 8.Nbxc7 Rb8 9.Nb5 a6 10.Nbc3 Nf6 11.Bf4 Ra8 12.Bc7 1-0

Openings, Number of Possible

There are 400 different possible positions after one move each. There are 71,852 different possible positions after two moves each. There are over 9 million different possible positions after three moves each. There are over 288 billion different possible positions after four moves each. The number of distinct 40-move games is far greater than the number of electrons in the observable universe.

Opocensky, Karel (1892-1975)

Four-time Czech champion.

Orangutan Opening

This opening (1.b4), also known as Sokolsky's Opening or Polish Opening, got its name during the New York 1924 tournament, when grandmaster Tartakower visited the Bronx Zoo, encountering Suzan the orangutan. The next day, in the 4th round, Tartakower played 1.b4 against Maroczy.

Orlov, Georgi (1965?- )

International Master who emigrated from Moldavia to the United States in 1991. He won the championship of Moldavia three times. In 1994, he won the 95th U.S. Open, held near Chicago, Illinois, on tiebreak over Dmitry Gurevich, Ben Finegold, Smbat Lputian, Leo Kaushansky, and Albert Chow. In 1999 he tied for 1st place in the Canadian Open. He played in two U.S. Championships. He has won the Washington State Championship 5 times.

Haubrich – Orlov, Chicago 1991
1.e4 e6 2.d3 d5 3.Nd2 Nf6 4.g3 dxe4 5.dxe4 Bc5 6.Ngf3 Ng4 0-1

Oscar, Chess

Prize for the best chess player of the year. Voting comes from chess journalists. The “Oscar” is a small statuette of silver representing Sancho Pancha, the creation of Cervantes. The winners have been as follows: 1968-Spassky, 1969-Spassky, 1970-Fischer, 1971-Fischer, 1972-Fischer, 1973-Karpov, 1974-Karpov, 1975-Karpov, 1976-Karpov, 1977-Karpov, 1978-Korchnoi, 1979-Karpov, 1980-Karpov, 1981-Karpov, 1982-Kasparov, 1983-Kasparov, 1984-Karpov, 1985-Kasparov, 1986-Kasparov, 1987-Kasparov, 1988-Kasparov, 1995-Kasparov, 1996-Kasparov, 1997-Anand, 1998-Anand, 1999-Kasparov, 2000-Kramnik, 2001-Kasparov, 2002-Kasparov, 2003-Anand, 2004-Anand.

Ostojic, Predrag (1938-1996)

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1975). He won the Yugoslav championship in 1968 and 1971.

Oswald, Lee Harvey (1939-1963)

Presumed assassin of President John F. Kennedy. He was an avid chess player. While in the Marines, he would play over 4 hours a day and taught dozens of other Marines how to play chess. The Warren Commission stated that he was not a good chess player.

Owen, John (1827-1901)

Born in Staffordshire on July 1, 1827. In 1851, he was ordained and became a vicar of Hooten, Chesire from 1862 to 1900. He was a member of George’s Chess Club and was recognized as one of London’s strongest amateurs. He played chess and wrote under the pseudonym ‘Alter’. He popularized the move 1.e4 b6, Owen’s Defense. In 1857, he won the minor section of the first British Chess Association Congress in Manchester. The major section was won by Janos Loewenthal. In 1858, he tied for 3rd-4th in the 2nd British Chess Association Congress in Birmingham. In 1858, he lost a match to Samuel Boden in London (+2-7=2). In 1860, he tied a match with Ignatz Kolisch in Manchester (+4-4=0). In 1862, He took 3rd place in the 1st British Chess Federation Congress in London (the first round-robin event), behind Anderssen and Paulsen. In 1868-1869, he took 3rd-4th in the 2nd British Chess Association Challenge Cup in London. In 1870, he took 3rd in the 3rd British Chess Association Congress in London. In 1874, he tied a match with Amos Burn in Liverpool (+4-4=0). In 1875, he lost a match with Burn in London (+11-6=3). In 1876, he tied for 2nd-4th in the 12 British Counties Chess Association Congress in Chelenham. In 1878, he lost a match with Zukertort (+0-8=3). In 1881, he took 2nd in the 16th British Counties Chess Association Congress. In 1888, he defeated Amos Burn in a match in Liverpool (+5-3=0). In 1890, he tied for 3rd-4th in the 23rd British Counties Chess Association Congress. In 1894-1895, he took 2nd-3rd in the 3rd Craigside Tournament in Llandudno, England. He died on November 24, 1901.

Owen – Burn, London 1887
1.Nf3 d5 2.d4 Bf5 3.e3 e6 4.Nc3 Nf6 5.a3 c5 6.Bb5+ Nbd7 7.Ne5 Bd6 8.g4 Bxe5 9.gxf5 Bd6 10.dxc5 Bxc5 11.b4 Bd6 12.Bb2 Rc8 13.Qd4 O-O 14.Bxd7 Qxd7 15.Nxd5 Ne8 16.Nf6+ gxf6 17.Rg1+ Kh8 18.Qxf6+ Nxf6 19.Bxf6+ 1-0


Oxford was the first university to have a chess club, in 1845. The Oxford University Chess Club was formally founded in 1869. In 1873 Oxford challenged Cambridge University. They play a chess match every year and it is the longest running annual match in chess. In 2004 they were playing their 122th varsity match. Cambridge leads 63 to 59. Grandmaster John Nunn graduated from Oxford at age 18. International Master Ken Regan graduated from Oxford. Lord Randolph Churchill played for Oxford.

Ozols, Karlis (1912-2001)

Latvian chess master who won the Riga championship in 1944. He immigrated to Australia in 1949. He was accused of taking part in war atrocities during World War II and being a Nazi war criminal. He won the Australian championship in 1956. In 1977 he was awarded the Correspondence International Master title.

Pachman, Ludek (1924-2004)

Grandmaster (1954) who was imprisoned twice in Czechoslovakia after openly protesting the Soviet occupation of his land in 1968. He had been editor of one of the daily newspapers published illegally in Prague. He was beaten and suffered a broken skull and backbone. He won the Czech championship 7 times. He moved to Germany in 1972 and changed his last name from Pachman to Pachmann. In 1975 he wrote Checkmate in Prague.

Pachman – Al Awadi, Baden-Baden 1987
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Bg5 Be7 6.e3 Nbd7 7.Bd3 O-O 8.Qc2 h6 9.Bh4 Re8 10.Nge2 c6 11.O-O b5 12.Rab1 a5 13.Bg3 a4 14.Nxb5 Qb6 15.Nc7 1-0

Padevsky, Nikola (1933- )

Bulgarian Grandmaster (1964). He won the Bulgarian Championship five times (1954, 1955, 1962, 1964, 1974).

Paehtz, Elisabeth

International Master from Germany. World Junior Champion for Girls in 2005.

Paehtz, Thomas (1956- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2412.

Paine, Thomas (1737-1809)

American Revolutionist saved by a game of chess. Paine was arrested for favoring the exile, rather than the execution, of King Louis XVI and about to be guillotined in Paris in 1794. His wife went to a cafe frequented by Robespiere and defeated him in a game of chess. Robespiere challenged her

again and promised to grant any wish she made if she defeated him again. She again won and got her husband's life spared. Tom Paine wrote The Rights of Man and Common Sense.


The first painting with a chess theme can be found in Sicily. The painting is kept at the Cappella Palatina in Palermo, Sicily. It is a painting of two Arabs seated on the ground under a tent playing a game of chess. The painting was made in the 12th century. In 1490 a Venetian artist painted The Chess Players.

Palac, Mladen (1971- )

Grandmaster from Croatia. His FIDE rating is 2566.

Palace of Young Pioneers

Soviet children's sports school which has a chess club, found in every Soviet city. Tigran Petrosian got his early training at the Tbilisi Palace, Smyslov at the Moscow Palace, Polugaevsky at the Kuibyshev Palace, Karpov at the Zlatoust Palace, Spassky at the Leningrad Palace, and Kasparov at the Baku Palace. Over 5 million children take part in these Pioneer Chess Clubs.

Palamede (Le Palamede, Revue Mensuelle des Echecs)

The first magazine devoted entirely to chess, founded by La Bourdonnais in 1836 and published in Paris. The periodical was named after Palamades, an ancient Greek inventor, who is one of the many fabled creators of chess. The magazine was abandoned in 1839, then appeared again from 1842 to 1847.

Palatnik, Semon (Sam) (1950- )

Grandmaster (1978) now living in Tennessee. His FIDE rating is 2478.

Palciauskas, Victor (Vytas) (1941- )

Winner of the 10th World Correspondence Championship in 1984. He has a PhD in Theoretical Physics in 1969. He became an International Correspondence Chess Federation (ICCF) grandmaster in 1983.

Pan-Am Intercollegiate

America's oldest team-on-team competition, begun in 1946 (won by City College of New York). It is the largest and most prestigious collegiate chess tournament in the Western Hemisphere.

Panchenko, Alexander (1953- )

Grandmaster (1980) from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2339.

Panno, Oscar (1935- )

Argentine Grandmaster (1955). In 1953 he won the World Junior Chess Championship and the Argentina chess championship. At the 1970 Interzonal in Buenos Aires, he was to play Bobby Fischer but protested because he did not like that fact that Fischer was playing his last round games at a different time than all the other players due to Fischer’s religious beliefs. Fischer played 1.c4 for the first time in his life and waited for Panno to make his move. Panno was out of the tournament room but returned 52 minutes before returning to the game and resigned the game, making it the shortest game ever played.

Panno – Paglilla, Buenos Aires 1990
1.d4 e6 2.c4 Bb4+ 3.Nd2 Nf6 4.Ngf3 d5 5.a3 Be7 6.e3 O-O 7.b3 c5 8.Bb2 cxd4 9.exd4 Ne4 10.Bd3 f5 11.O-O Nc6 12.b4 a6 13.Nb3 dxc4 14.Bxc4 b5 15.Bd3 Bb7 16.Re1 Qd5 17.Bb1 Ng5 18.Nxg5 Nxd4 19.Nf3 Nxb3 20.Ba2 1-0

Paoli, Enrico (1908-2005)

Born in Trieste on January 13, 1908. He learned chess at the age of nine. In 1938, he won the Italian championship. He won it again in 1957, and in 1968, at the age of 60. He became an International Master in 1951. He became an honorary Grandmaster in 1996. He was the strongest active nonagenarian in the world, and still playing chess at the age of 97. He died on December 15, 2005. He died less than a month before his 98th birthday.

Papaioannou, Ioannis (1976- )

Grandmaster from Greece. His FIDE rating is 2578.

Paris 1878 (Paris International Chess Congress)

A super chess tournament took place in Paris in June-July in 1878 during a world exhibition. It was the first intercontinental tournament in Europe (Mackenzie and Mason from the USA participated). It was a 11 round double-round robin. The event was won by Zukertort, followed by Winawer. Zukertort won 1,000 francs and two rare Sevres vases (worth 5,800 francs each). 3rd place went to Blackburne. The idea of adjournment (sealed move) was first used at Paris in 1878. The event was organized by M. Camille Morel and members of the Paris Cercle des Echecs.

Paris 1924

First world team competition, held in conjunction of the Olympic games. Fifty-four participants came from all over the world representing 18 teams. The individual winner was Mattison of Latvia. The team winner was Czechoslovakia, followed by Hungary and Switzerland. The two representatives from Russia were refugees living in Paris. Canada and Ireland were each represented by one player only.

Parligras, Mircea (1980- )

Grandmaster from Romania. His FIDE rating is 2571.

Parma, Bruno (1941- )

World Junior Champion in 1961 and Yugoslav Grandmaster (1963).

Canal – Parma, Reggio Emilia 1965
1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.Bg5 c6 5.Qe2 h6 6.Bh4 Qa5 7.O-O-O Bg7 8.e5 dxe5 9.dxe5 Nh5 10.Re1 Be6 11.Nh3 Nd7 12.g4 Bxe5 13.gxh5 Bxc3 14.bxc3 Qa3+ 15.Kd2 O-O-O 16.Ke3 Qxc3+ (17.Kf4 g5+; 17.Qd3 Qxe1+; 17.Ke4 Bd5+) 0-1

Parsloe’s Hotel

The first gathering in England to be known as a chess club, which formed in 1770. It was on St. James Place in London. It was limited to 100 members at a three-guinea subscription. The money was used to pay Andre Philidor to spend his time and give lessons and blindfold exhibitions there. Philidor visited the club as a resident master for 20 years. He gave chess lessons there for a crown each. It closed in 1825.


Weak chess player. From the German verb patzen, to make a mess of.

Paulsen, Louis (1833-1891)

Second prize winner (after Paul Morphy) in the first American Chess Congress in 1857. He was born in Germany but immigrated to America in 1854 with his family and established a distillery and a tobacco trade in Dubuque, Iowa. he was probably the number two chess player in the world from 1858 to 1873. The Paulsen variation of the Sicilian Defense is 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6. Paulsen’s sister, Amalie, was the first woman to beat a master. His father taught chess to Louis, his two older brothers, and his two sisters. Louis was able to play 15 games simultaneously blindfolded.

Paulsen – Kistner, Hameln 1861
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Qf6 3.Bc4 c6 4.O-O Bc5 5.d4 exd4 6.e5 Qd8 7.c3 d5 8.exd6 dxc3 9.Nxc3 Bf5 10.Qb3 Qd7 11.Ne5 Qc8 12.Bxf7+ Kf8 13.Bxg8 Qe8 14.Bg5 Bxd6 15.Bxf7+ Kf8 16.Bxg8 Qe8 17.Nxd6 g6 18.Bh6+ Rg7 19.Qxb7 Qxb7 20.Re8 mate 1-0

Pauly, Wolfgang (1876-1934)

Greatest chess problemist of Romaina. He was also an amateur astronomer who discovered a comet, now named the Pauly comet. In 2001, Marian Stere wrote Wolfgang Pauly: Challenge of a Legacy. The book is 736 pages with 1,350 diagrams. The current Romanian parliament was built over Pauly’s old house.

Pavasovic, Dusko (1976- )

Grandmaster from Slovenia. His FIDE rating is 2566.

Pavey, Max (1918-1957)

While a student in Scotland, he won the Scottisch Champion in 1939. He was U.S. Ligntnng Champion in 1947. He was New York State Champion in 1949. In 1950, his U.S. Chess Federation rating was 2442 (#15 in the U.S.). In 1951, Pavey was the first master that Bobby Fischer played. It was a simultaneous exhibition that Pavey was giving, and Fischer lost. He died of leukemia and radium poisoning.

Pavlovic, Milos (1964- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2471.


The new pawn move, advancing two squares on its first move instead of one, was first introduced in Spain in 1280. Starting a game by making two pawn moves before the opponent moved was common in Germany and Holland up to the 16th century, and still common in Germany in the late 19th century. In parts of Asia, pawns have started on the 3rd rank instead of the 2nd. Pawns capture straight ahead in Chinese and Japanese chess. Up until 1890 a pawn, upon reaching the 8th rank, may remain a pawn. A related law stated that promotion could only be a piece that had been captured. If no piece had been captured, the pawn remained a pawn until a capture was made. Steinitz was the leading advocate of this dummy pawn law.

Pawn Promotion

In the 15th century, promotion to allow more than one queen was considered improper because it symbolized adultery. In Spain and Italy in the 17th century, the Pawn could only be promoted to the rank of Queen. In France and Germany, promotion was limited to any piece which had been lost. In some countries a player could promote a pawn to an enemy piece so as to force stalemate. The current law in pawn promotion was established in 1851 at the first international tournament in 1851. As late as the 1870's you could promote a pawn and declare it a "dummy" with no powers.


The most popular PBS TV show aired was the 1972 Fischer-Spassky chess match. Shelby Lyman and Edmar Mednis were the guest commentators.

Pelletier, Yannick (1976- )

Swiss Grandmaster (2000). He won the Swiss championship in 1995, 2000, and 2002. He is the highest rated native Swiss player.

Pelletier – Carlsen, Biel 2005
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 d5 5.cxd5 c5 6.dxc5 Nxd5 7.Bd2 Bxc5 8.Nxd5 Qxd5 9.e4 Qd4 10.O-O-O Nd7 11.Bb5 O-O 12.Bc3 Qxf2 13.Qxf2 Bxf2 14.Bxd7 Be3+ 15.Kc2 Rb8 1-0

Peng, Xiaomin (1973- )

Grandmaster from China. His FIDE rating is 2590.

Peng, Zhaogin (1968- )

Awarded the Men’s Grandmaster title. She now lives in the Netherlands. Her FIDE rating is 2405.

Penquite, John (1935- )

Highest rated USCF correspondence player with a rating of 2933. He won 49 straight correspondence games in the top section of the USCF postal tournament. In the 1990 Golden Knights Championship he finished with a perfect 18-0 score. He won the Iowa State Championship in 1951, 1952, 1953, 1959, 1961, 1971, 1972, and 1973.

Penrose, Jonathan (1933- )

English International Master (1961) who has won the British chess championship a record 10 times (1958-63 and 1966-69). He is one of the top correspondence chess players in the world. He has a doctorate in psychology and his father, Lionel, was a distinguished geneticist and chess problem composer. His mother was a medical doctor. In 1970 he collapsed at the Siegen Olympiad from nervous tension. He turned to correspondence chess after that and became a Correspondence Chess Grandmaster in 1983. He won the British Junior Championship and London Championship in 1949 at age 15. His brother Roger (born in 1931) was knighted in 1994 for services to mathematics and science. He was later awared an emeritus grandmaster title. He was runner-up in the 13th World Correspondence Chess Championship, won by M. Umansky of Russia.

Veitch – Penrose, Buxton 1950
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 d5 4.g3 dxc4 5.Nbd2 c5 6.dxc5 Bxc5 7.Bg2 Bxf2+ 8.Kxf2 Bg4+ 9.Ke1 Ne3 10.Qa4+ Bd7 0-1

Penrose, Lionel (1898-1972)

British medical doctor, psychiatrist, geneticist, mathematician, chess theorist, and chess problem composer. He carried out pioneering work in inherited mental illness. He was a professor of Eugenics. He is the father of mathematician Oliver Penrose, scientist Roger Penrose, and Grandmaster Master Jonathan Penrose.

Peralta, Carlos

First official champion of Chile, in 1920.

Perlis, Julius (1880-1913)

Polish-born Austrian lawyer and player of Grandmaster strength. He died of exposure (froze to death) in an Alpine mountaineering accident. He was 33.

Maroczy – Perlis, Vienna 1904
1.e4 e5 2.f4 Bc5 3.Nf3 d6 4.Bc4 Be6 5.Be2 Nf6 6.c3 Bb6 7.fxe5 Ng4 8.d4 dxe5 9.Ng5 Nh6 10.O-O Qd6 11.Kh1 O-O 12.Na3 exd4 13.Nb5 Qd7 14.Nxd4 Bg4 15.Bxg4 Nxg4 16.h3 c5 17.Rf5 Qxf5 18.Nxf5 Nf2+ 19.Kh2 Nxd1 20.Bf4 Nxb2 0-1

Persinger, Louis (1887-1966)

One of the greatest violinists who ever lived. He taught Yehudi Menuhin (1916-1999). He was passionately devoted to chess. In 1941 he won the first US Chess Federation open postal chess tournament. In 1944 he played in the US Chess Championship, but only scored ½ point out of 17 games and took last place. When he was a judge at violin contests, he would usually pull out his pocket chess set and study chess or find some other judge, such as David Oistrakh, to play chess.

Pert, Nicholas (1981- )

Grandmaster from England. His FIDE rating is 2493.


In 1997, the Japanese ambassador’s mansion in Lima was taken over by a terrorist group (Tupac Amaru rebels), where 72 hostages were held. A chess set was delivered during the hostage crises. Embedded in the chess pieces were tiny microphones. This gave the Peruvian Commandos intimate knowledge of the hostage-takers’ daily routine. The information allowed an assault by the commandos to free 71 hostages. One hostage, supreme court judge Carlos Acuna, died from a heart attack. All 14 terrorists were killed.

Perunovic, Milos (1984- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2559.

Peters, John (Jack) (1951- )

Champion of New England in 1971, 1974, and 1975. Massachusetts State Champion in 1974 and 1975. Winner of the American Open in 1977. In 1978 he was President of the Professional Chess Association (PCA). International Master in 1979.

Petkevich, Jusefs (1940- )

Grandmaster from Latvia. Winner of the 12th World Open Senior Championship in 2002. His FIDE rating is 2433.

Petroff, Alexander (1794-1867)

The first strong player Russia produced. He was Russia's first master, theoretician, chess writer and chess composer. Petroff’s Defense (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6) is named after him.

Petroff-Schimanski, Warsaw 1847
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.c4 Bb4+ 5.Nc3 Ne7 6.Nf3 Bg4 7.Be2 dxc4 8.O-O Bxf3 9.Bxf3 c6 10.Qe2 Qxd4 11.Rd1 Qf6 12.Ne4 Qe6 13.a3 Ba5 14.Bg4 Qg6 15.Bf5 Nxf5 16.Nf6+ (16...Kf8 17.Qe8 mate) 1-0

Petrosian, Arshak (1953- )

Grandmaster from Armenia. His FIDE rating is 2470.

Petrosian, Tigran Vartanovich (1929-1984)

USSR Grandmaster (1952) and 9th world chess champion. (1963-1969). Between 1968 and 1975 he never lost more than a single game in any tournament. He drew more than half his total games of chess, a higher fraction than any other World Champion. He received less than $2,000 for winning the world chess championship in 1966 against Spassky. When Petrosian defeated Spassky in 1966, it was the first time a World Champion defeated his challenger in 32 years (Alekhine defeated Bogoljubov in 1934). In 1972 at the Skopje Olympiad he lost a game on time to Hubner, his first loss on time in his whole career. When he was later told that the incident had been shown on TV, he said, "If I had known that, I would definitely have smashed the clock." His first official match that he played was for the World Championship, which he won when he defeated Botvinnik in 1963. When he lost his match with Fischer in 1971, Petrosian's wife, Rona, put the blame on his trainer, Alexey Suetin, and slapped him. Petrosian was unbeaten in 6 USSR championships. He only lost one game out of 129 in chess Olympiad play. Before Rona married Petrosian, she was flirting and dating both Efim Geller and Tigran Petrosian. In 1952, when both players went to Sweden for the Interzonal, she said she would marry whoever performed better in the Interzonal. Petrosian finished ½ point better than Geller, and Petrosian and Rona Avinezer were later married. In 1964, he won the championship of the Trade Unions in Moscow.

T. Petrosian – Necsesov, Tbilisi 1944
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.Qe2 Qe7 6.d3 Nf6 7.Bg5 Qxe2+ 8.Bxe2 Be7 9.Nc3 c6 10.O-O-O O-O 11.Rhe1 Bf5 12.Nd4 Bg6 13.Bg4 Bd8 14.Bc8 Bb6 15.Bxb7 Bxd4 16.Bxa8 1-0

Petrosian, Tigran L (1984- )

Grandmaster from Armenia. His FIDE rating is 2581.

Petrovs, Vladimir (1907-1945)

Three-time Latvian champion (1930, 1934, 1937). He took 2nd place in the 1942 USSR chess championship. He died in a Soviet forced-labor camp in the Gulag mining town of Vorkuta, Russia, above the Arctic Circle.

Page – V. Petrov, Folkestone 1933
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nbd2 c5 4.e3 Nc6 5.c3 e6 6.Bd3 Bd6 7.Qe2 O-O 8.O-O e5 9.dxe5 Nxe5 10.Nxe5 Bxe5 11.Nf3 Bc7 12.b4 c4 13.Bc2 Bg4 14.h3 Bh5 15.g4 Nxg4 16.hxg4 Bxg4 17.Kg2 Bxf3+ 18.Kxf3 Qf6+ 19.Kg4 Qe6+ 20.Bf5 h5+ 21.Kxh5 Qxf5+ 22.Kh4 g5+ 23.Kh5 Kg7 (threatening 24...Rh8 mate) 0-1

Petursson, Margeir (1960- )

Grandmaster (1986) from Iceland. He won the Icelandic championship in 1986. His FIDE rating is 2540. His occupation is a lawyer.

Pfefferkorn, Lawrence (1904-1980)

Chess patron who sponsored the Lawrence Pfefferkorn Open (LPO) in North Carolina. The LPOs were always the largest tournaments in North Carolina, attracting over 200 players from over 20 states. Pfefferkorn wrote a chess column for the Atlanta Journal in the 1920s. He was chairman of a mortgage banking and insurance business. There have been 31 annual LPO tournaments since 1974. Pfefferkorn, with the help of Dr. Alan Lipkin and Bill Wall, organized and directed the early LPOs.

Pfleger, Helmut (1943- )

German Grandmaster (1975). He was born in Czechoslovakia. He was West German champion in 1965. His FIDE rating is 2477. His occupation is a medical doctor.


In December, 1826 Maelzel brought the Turk to Philadelphia. The excitement generated by the mysterious Turk was responsible for the formation of the first chess club in Philadelphia. Over 100 members enrolled themselves in the chess club in the first week. The club dissolved and it wasn’t until after a visit by Paul Morphy to Philadelphia in 1859 that another chess club in Philadelphia formed.


The first philatelic item, a chess cancellation, appeared on a German envelope in 1923. The first postage stamp depicting a chess motif was issued in Bulgaria in 1947 on the occasion of the Balkan games. Over 140 countries have issued postage stamps related to chess. The United States has never issued a postage chess with any chess theme.

Philidor, Francois-Andre Danican(1726-1795)

Best chess player of the 18th century. His father, Andre (1647-1730), was the royal music librarian who had 20 children, partly by marrying a third wife over 50 years younger than him. Andre was a child of that third marriage when his father was 79. In 1744, at the age of 18, Philidor was able to play two players blindfolded. In 1748 Philidor introduced the modern rule of numbering each moves and its reply with the same number. In 1749, at the age of 23, he published L’Analyse du Jeu Des Eschecs (Chess Analysed). The book formed the basis of the first Russian work on chess. Philidor was the first writer to explain the reasons for particular moves. In 1750 he was giving chess exhibitions for Frederick the Great was able to play 3 games blindfolded. Philidor wrote that pawns were the soul of chess. He wrote 23 operas.

Sheldon – Philidor, London 1790
1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 c6 3.Nf3 d5 4.exd5 cxd5 5.Bb3 Nc6 6.d4 e4 7.Ne5 Be6 8.O-O f6 9.Nxc6 bxc6 10.f3 f5 11.Be3 Nf6 12.Nd2 Bd6 13.c4 O-O 14.Ba4 Qc7 15.f4 Ng4 16.Qe2 Nxe3 17.Qxe3 c5 18.Nb3 dxc4 19.Nxc5 Bxc5 20.dxc5 Rac8 21.c6 Rfd8 22.Rfd1 Rd3 23.Rxd3 cxd3 24.Bb3 Bxb3 25.axb3 Qb6 26.Kf2 Qxe3+ 27.Kxe3 Rxc6 28.Rxa7 Rd6 29.Kd2 e3+ 30.Kxe3 d2 31.Ra1 d1=Q 0-1

Philidor’s Legacy

A common smothered mating pattern of sacrificing the queen and mating with the knight The position has been known since the 1400s. The name derives from An Introduction to the History and Study of Chess by Thomas Pruen in 1804. The book includes some text by Philidor and “A clever legacy” position. It became known as Philidor’s Legacy in Hoyle’s Treatise on Chess in 1808.

Philip (Phillip) II (1527-1598)

King of Spain (Hapsburg Dynasty and infamous Spanish Armada) and patron of chess. Around 1574 and 1575, the top chess players in Spain and Italy played in King Philip’s court. Players included the Spanish players Ruy Lopez de Segura and Alfonso Ceron (Zerone or Girone) of Granada, and the Italian players Leonardo di Cutri, Paoli Boi, and Giulio Polerio. These were the first recorded matches and tournaments in the world. Leonardo defeated Ruy Lopez in a match in August 1575 win 3 wins and 2 losses. King Philip rewarded Leonardo very handsomely.


The first national chess championship of the Philippines was held in 1947 and won by Horacio Tagle. The Philippine Chess Federation has a dress code for chessplayers. They have outlawed slippers, T-shirts, and vests in their chess events. The Philippine government was willing to pay $5 million for a Fischer-Karpov match, the second biggest purse in sports history, and the largest one that had ever been turned down. They were the only nation to send a team to the 1976 Olympiad in Haifa and the "Against Israel Olympiad" in Tripoli, Libya.

Phillips, Harold (1874-1967)

Lawyer and President of the United States Chess Federation (USCF) from 1950-54, President of the Marshall Chess Club, former New York State Champion and Manhattan Chess Club Champion. He was the organizer and director of the great New York 1924 International Tournament. He played in chess tournaments for over 70 years. In his earlier years, he was known as “Der Kleine Morphy.”


The first known photograph of chess players was taken by William Henry Fox Talbot, father of the calotype process, in 1843.

Piatigorsky, Gregor (1903-1976)

World famous cellist and chess patron. In 1920 he defected to Poland from Russia. He became a U.S. citizen in 1942. In 1963 he sponsored the first Piatigorsky Cup in Los Angeles, won by Petrosian and Keres. In 1966 he sponsored the 2nd Piatigorsky Cup in Santa Monica, won by Spassky. Fischer took 2nd and Larsen took 3rd. When Spassky played Fischer, there were over 900 spectators, and many others were turned away. This was the largest audience ever to witness a chess tournament in the United States.

Piatigorsky, Jacqueline (1911- )

Married to Gregor Piatigorsky and woman chess player and patron. She played in several U.S. Women’s Championships. In 1961 she sponsored a chess match between Fischer and Reshevsky. She asked Fischer to rearrange his schedule and play his match game earlier so she could attend the match and her husband’s concert later that evening. Fischer refused to play earlier and was forfeited.

Pigusov, Evgeny (1961- )

Russian Grandmaster (1987). His FIDE rating is 2556.

Piket, Jeroen (1969- )

Grandmaster (1989) from the Netherlands. His FIDE rating is 2624. He retired from chess and is now the personal secretary of billionaire Joop Van Oosterom.

Pillsbury, Harry Nelson (1872-1906)

One of the top four chess players in the world from 1895 to 1903. He learned chess in 1888, at the age of 15. In 1895 he played in his first major tournament in Hastings and won it (winning 150 pounds or about $1,200). Up to that time, no other player had ever won his first major tournament that he participated in. After his win in Hastings, several newspapers in Boston and New York added chess columns on page one. He never won another tournament outright. Pillsbury (now known as “hero of Hastings”) would give simultaneous exhibitions playing 10 chess players and 10 checker players, while playing whist. His feat of 22 simultaneous blindfolded games was, in his time, judged to be unbeatable. He was given a list to memorize: Antiphlogistine, periosteum, takadiastase, plasmon, ambrosia, Threlkeld, strepococcus, straphylococcus, micrococcus, plasmodium, Mississippi, Freiheit, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, athletics, no war, Etchenberg, American, Russian, philosophy, Piet Potgelter's Rost, Salamagundi, Oomisellecootsi, Bangmanvate, Schlechter's Nek, Manzinyama, theosophy, catechism, and Madjesoomalops. After a few minutes he was able to recite the list forward and backward. He was able to recall the list the following day. In 1900 he went on a seven month nation-wide tour in which he gave over 150 exhibitions and traveled 40,000 miles. From 1890 to 1900 Pillsbury worked the automaton Ajeeb in New York. In 1905, he tried to commit suicide in a hospital in Philadelphia. Pillsbury died of syphilis in 1906 at the age of 33, probably caught in Russia. He was considered one of the top 10 checker players in the country.

Pillsbury – Fernandez, Hanover 1900
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4 d6 4.Nf3 a6 5.Bc4 Bg4 6.fxe5 Nxe5 7.Nxe5 Bxd1 8.Bxf7+ Ke7 9.Nd5 mate 1-0

Pilnick, Carl (1923-

Participated in the 1942 and 1954 US Championship. Winner of the Marshall Chess Club Championship in 1966. Winner on tie-break of the 7th Annual American Open in 1972.

Pilnik, Herman (1914-1981)

Argentine Grandmaster (1952). He was born in Germany. He won the Argentinian championship in 1942, 1945, and 1958. In 1950 he played one of the longest chess games on record. He played a 191-move draw against Czerniak in Mar del Plata, Argentina. In 1973 he few to Philadelphia from Argentina for an international chess tournament. While driving to the playing site, the car was struck and overturned with part of it hanging over the edge of a steep embankment. Two other occupants of the car were hospitalized with broken bones, but Pilnik made it to the tournament, won his first round game (against Soltis) and tied for 1st place in the tournament. He later moved to Venezuela and taught chess at the Caracas Military Academy.

Pilnik – Sanguineti, Mad del Plata 1947
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Nxf6+ gxf6 6.Bc4 Bf5 7.Ne2 e6 8.Ng3 Bg6 9.c3 Bd6 10.Qe2 Qc7 11.Nh5 Bxh5 12.Qxh5 Qe7 13.Bd2 Nd7 14.O-O-O O-O-O 15.Rhe1 Rdg8 16.g3 f5 17.Qe2 Nf6 18.Bd3 Qc7 19.c4 Rg6 20.Kb1 Kb8 21.c5 1-0

Pinkus, Albert (1903-1984)

Champion of both the Manhattan (1941, 1945) and Marshall Chess Clubs. He played in the U.S. Championship five times. He became a stock broker in 1939.

Pinter, Jozsef (1953- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1982). He was Hungarian Champion in 1978 and 1979. His FIDE rating is 2526.

Piskov, Yury (1961- )

Russian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2452.

Plachetka, Jan (1945- )

Grandmaster (1978) from Slovakia. His FIDE rating is 2459.

Planinc (Planinec), Albin (1944- )

Grandmaster (1972) from Slovenia. His FIDE rating is 2415.

Plaskett, James (1960- )

Grandmaster from England (1985) He was the 1990 British Champion. His FIDE rating is 2490.


In 1624 a play called A Game at Chess by Thomas Middleton (1580-1627) appeared in England at the Globe theater. The play presented eminent political persons in the guise of chessmen. It also satirized Prince Charles's Spanish wedding. It played to packed houses for 9 days running. The play was stopped at the protest of the Spanish ambassador, whose predecessor was portrayed on stage as a Black Knight. The authorities prosecuted and fined the actors and Middleton went to prison. The play was suppressed by King James I.


Group of seven Berlin chess players who met between 1837 and 1839 to further advance chess. The seven players were Paul Rudolph von Bilguer, Dr. Ludwig E. Bledow (the leader), Wilhelm Hanstein, Bernhard Horwitz, Tassilo von Heydebrand und der Lasa, Karl Mayet, and Karl Schorn. They were known as the Seven Stars of Berlin, or the Pleiades. Von der Lasa objected to the name Pleiades because the group of stars shine faintly.


Pocket Chess Set

The first pocket chess set was devised by Dr. Peter Mark Roget (1779-1869) in 1845. Roget is best known as the author of Roget’s Thesaurus.


Chess players who are/were strong poker players include Walter Browne, Josef Klinger, Ken Smith

Polerio, Giulio Cesare (1548-1608)

Chess author. In 1574 he recorded the important opening variations of his time. He was the first to mention the King’s Gambit, the Sicilian, the Two Knights Defense, and the Dutch. In 1584 he wrote about the exploits of Ruy Lopez, Paoli Boi, and Leonardo di Cutri in Madrid. He was a servant of Leonardo. He was called l’Apruzzese. Polerio was later employed by Giacomo Boncompagni, Duke of Sora, and the illegitimate some of Pope Gregory XIII. The duke was a patron of chess during the Renaissance.

Polgar, Judit (1976- )

Considered the greatest woman chess player ever. She was the second youngest grandmaster at age 15 years, 4 months, and 27 days (Fischer was a grandmaster at age 15 years, 6 months, and 1 day after the Portoroz Interzonal in 1958). She made her third and final GM norm by winning the Hungarian Championship in 1991 at the age of 15. In 1986 at the age of 9 she won the unrated section of the New York Open, winning 7 games and drawing one game. At age 11 she was rated 2350. At age 12 years and one month she earned an International Master title – younger than Fischer or Kasparov. At age 13 she was the World Under 14 Champion for boys and FIDE's highest rated woman. She ranks one of the top 10 chess players in the world (male or female). She won the US Open in 1998, the only woman to ever win it. She is the only woman to ever be a FIDE World Champion quarterfinalist, which she did in 1999.

Judit Polgar – Rivas, Dos Hermanas 1993
1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 Nbd7 4.f4 e5 5.Nf3 exd4 6.Qxd4 c6 7.Be3 d5 8.exd5 Bc5 9.Qd3 Qe7 10.Nd4 Nb6 11.dxc6 O-O 12.O-O-O bxc6 13.Bg1 Qc7 14.g3 Rd8 15.Ndb5 1-0

Polgar, Zsofia (Sofia) (1974- )

Once achieved the highest performance rating ever, when she scored 8.5 out of 9 in Rome, 1989 and won the event. She won 8 straight games and took a draw in the final round at a point where she had a favorable position and could have won. Her performance rating was over 2900. She was a two-time Gold medallist with the Hungarian national women’s team in 1988 and 1990.

Sofia Polgar – Selles, San Sebastian 1991
1.e4 e5 2.f4 Nf6 3.fxe5 Nxe4 4.Nf3 d5 5.d3 Nc5 6.d4 Ne4 7.Bd3 Bg4 8.O-O c5 9.h3 Bh5 10.Bb5+ Nc6 11.Kh2 cxd4 12.g4 Bg6 13.Nxd4 Rc8 14.c4 Be7 15.Nf5 dxc4 16.Nxg7+! (16...Kf8 17.Ne6+ and 18.Nxd8) 1-0

Polgar, Szuzsa (Susan) (1969- )

Winner of the first Girl’s Cadet (under age 16) Championship in 1981(Sussex, England) at the age of 12. She won the Budapest Under-11 Championship at age four and a half with a perfect 10 out of 10 score. She obtained her Hungarian master’s title at the age of 10. At age 12 she was rated over 2300 in Hungary and 2245 FIDE rating. In 1986, at the age of 17, she became the first woman ever to qualify for the Men’s World Championship. In 1987 FIDE gave 100 free rating points to every woman except Susan on the world ranking list. This topped Susan from the top spot to second behind the Soviet women's titleholder. In 1991, she became the world first female grandmaster. She won the Women’s World Championship in February, 1996 by defeating Xie Jun. She has won the Women’s World Chess Championship 4 times. In 2003, she won the U.S. Open Blitz Championship. OnAugust 1-2, 2005, she played a marathon chess event at Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. She played chess for 16-and-a-half hours (for 10:30 am to 3:00 am). She played 326 simultaneous games, winning 309, drawing 14, and losing only 3 games, for a 96.93% winnng percentage. She played 1,131 consecutive games against 554 opponents, winning 1,112 games, drawing 16 games, and losing only 3 games. She is founder of the Susan Polgar Foundation, a non-profit organization that promotes chess to young people.

De Los – Susan Polgar, Novi Sad 1990
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 Nc6 6.Be3 Nf6 7.f3 O-O 8.Bc4 Qb6 9.Qd2 Nxe4 10.fxe4 Bxd4 11.Bh6 Qxb2 (threatening 12...Bxc3) 0-1

Pollock, William (1859-1896)

Winner of the 1885 Irish Chess Championship. At the time, he was not a resident of Ireland. He had been a member of the Dublin Chess Club from 1880 to 1882 during his stay at as medical student. He then moved back to England and became a surgeon. In 1885 he took 4th place in the first British Chess Association Congress. In 1889 he made the voyage to New York to participate in the New York international tournament. He later moved to Baltimore as the resident chess professional. He soon was writing a chess column for the Baltimore Sunday News, as well as reports on American chess for the British Chess Magazine. In 1890, he took 2nd place at the S. Louis Chess Congress, behind Showalter. In 1892, he was William Steinitz’s secretary. He played in Hastings 1895 and defeated Steinitz and Tarrasch but took 19th place. He died in England in 1896 at the age of 37.

Pollock – Hall, England 1890
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.O-O d6 6.Nd5 Bg4 7.c3 Bc5 8.d3 Ne7 9.Nxe5 Bxd1 10.Nxf6+ gxf6 11.Bxf7+ Kf8 12.Bh6 mate 1-0

Polugaevsky, Lev (1934-1995)

Soviet International Grandmaster (1962) and one of the top 10 players in the 1970s. He won the USSR championship in 1967, 1968, and 1969. He played in 20 Soviet chess championships, and finished with a winning score in every one of them. He died in Paris and is in the same cemetery (Montparnasse) as the grave of Alekhine.

Polugaevsky – Franco, Havana 1966
1.d4 f5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bg5 Ne4 4.Nxe4 fxe4 5.f3 d5 6.e3 Bf5 7.fxe4 Bxe4 8.Ne2 h6 9.Bf4 Nc6 10.Nc3 Bg6 11.Bd3 Bf7 12.O-O e5 13.dxe5 Qd7 14.e6 Qxe6 15.Nb5 1-0

Poluljahov, Aleksandr (1965- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE ratingis 2511.

Pomar Salamanca, Arturo (1931- )

Chess prodigy and first grandmaster (1962) from Spain. He was born in Palma de Mallorca. His chess teacher was Antonio Perella. He won the Spanish chess championship 7 times, beginning in 1946 when he was 14. He was the champion of the Balearic Islands at age 11. He tied for first place at the US Open in 1954 (with Larry Evans).

Pomar – Gallegos, Gijon 1944
1.d4 e6 2.c4 f5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Bd2 Nf6 5.Nf3 b6 6.a3 Bxc3 7.Bxc3 Bb7 8.e3 O-O 9.Bd3 d6 10.d5 exd5 11.Bxf5 Qe7 12.Ng5 h6 13.Be6+ Kh8 14.h4 Ne4 15.Qh5 Nd7 16.Qxh6 mate 1-0

Ponomariov, Ruslan (1983- )

Became the world’s youngest grandmaster at age 14 (later beaten by Sergey Karjakin). At the age of 10, he won the World Under-12 Championship. At the age of 12, he had his first FIDE rating published at 2550. At age 13, he won the World Under-18 Championship. In 2002, he defeated Vassily Ivanchuk to become the youngest FIDE champion ever at the age of 18.

Ponomarev – Grishchuk, Szeged 1994
1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.Nc3 d6 4.f4 Nf6 5.Nf3 O-O 6.Be2 c5 7.dxc5 Qa5 8.O-O Qxc5 9.Kh1 Nc6 10.Bd3 e5 11.Qe1 exf4 12.Bxf4 Ne5 13.Nxe5 dxe5 14.Bg5 Ne8 15.Nd5 f6 16.Be3 Qd6 17.b4 b6 18.c4 Rf7 19.c5 bxc5 20.Bxc5 Qb8 21.Ne7 Kh8 22.Bc4 Rf8 23.Nxg6 1-0

Ponziani, Domenico Lorenzo (1719-1792)

Chess author, law lecturer, and priest. From 1742 to 1772, he was professor of Civil Law in the University of Modena. In 1766 he was Canon of the Cathedral. In 1785 he was Capitular Vicar. In 1769 he published one of the first practical chess guides to chess, Il Guico Incomparibile Degli Scacci Sviluppato con Nuovo Metodo, Opera d;Autore Modenese. This book dealt with chess openings and endings. A second and improved edition was published in 1782. The Ponziani opening is 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.c3.

Popovic, Petar (1959- )

Grandmaster (1981) from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2509.

Porath, Joseph (1909-1996)

International Master (1952) who was born in Germany and represented Germany in the 1928 Olympiad. He moved to Palestine in 1934 and won the Palestine chess championship 6 times.

Porath – Kraidman, Netanya 1961
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 d5 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.Nf3 O-O 7.O-O Nb6 8.Nc3 Nc6 9.d5 Nb4 10.e4 e6 11.Bg5 f6 12.Be3 Qe7 13.Qb3 Kh8 14.Rfd1 exd5 15.exd5 Rd8 16.Rac1 c6 17.d6 Rxd6 18.Bc5 N4d5 19.Re1 Be6 20.Nxd5 cxd5 21.Qb4 Rad8 22.Nd4 Bf8 23.Nxe6 1-0

Portisch, Ferenc (1939- )

International master from Hungary. He is the brother of Lajos Portisch.

Portisch, Lajos (1937- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1961) and one of the top chess players in the world in the 1970s. He has won the Hungarian championship 10 times. It is said that he studies chess 12 hours a day. He has played in more chess Olympiads (20) than any other person. His FIDE rating is 2536.

Naranja – L. Portisch, Siegen 1970
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Bc4 c5 8.Ne2 Nc6 9.Be3 O-O 10.h4 cxd4 11.cxd4 Qd6 12.Rc1 Rd8 13.d5 Ne5 14.Qb3 Bd7 15.f3 b5 16.Bd3 Qb4+ (17.Qxb4 Nxd3+ and 18...Nxb4) 0-1

Postal rates

In 1947 the U.S. Chess Federation urged all chessplayers to write to their Congressmen to protest a bill to increase postal card rates from one cent to two cents. USCF felt that the rates would increase the cost of postal chess so much as to discourage the practice of correspondence chess.

POWs and Chess

In almost every war with Prisoners of War (POW), POWs have credited chess literally with saving their lives. Any many POW camps, chess playing was the main diversion. During World War II, POWs played chess with their German guards to distract the guards from escape attempts by other POWs. The Red Cross shipped thousands of chess sets to POWs during World War II. Many American POWs during the Korean War from 1951 to 1953 played chess, which kept their mind sharp and focused. Chess pieces were made out of any material the POWs could get their hands on, such as cork, wood, or soap. Chess pieces during the war sent to POWs and were used to hide currency and compasses inside the chess pieces. Maps were inserted between chess boards. During the Vietnam war, many American POWs spent the majority of their time playing chess.

Price, Edith Charlotte (1872-1956)

Five-time British Ladies Champion (1922, 1923, 1924, 1928, 1948). She first played in the British Ladies Championship in 1912, finishing 2nd. She won it in 1948 at the age of 76, the oldest player ever to win a national championship. She was the woman's world chess championship challenger in 1927 and 1933. She founded the Gambit Chess Rooms in Budge Row for men only (except for waitresses), which was still active until 1958. This chess club was opened every day of its existence but for two days. It was closed for two days in September 1940 because it was bombed during a Nazi raid.

Prie, Eric (1962- )

Grandmaster from France. His FIDE rating is 2464.

Prins, Lodewijk (1913- )

Awarded the International Master title in 1950 and the Emeritus Grandmaster title in 1982. He was Netherlands Champion in 1965.

Prinz, Dietrich (1903- ?)

Ph.D. in Philosophy whose teachers included Einstein and Planck. He was the author of the first chess playing program for a general purpose computer (the Manchester Ferranti). The program first ran in November , 1951. The limitations of the first computers did not allow for a whole game of chess to be programmed. Prinz could only program mate-in-two positions. Prinz also wrote the first Artificial Intelligence (AI) program. The first full-fledged chess program was written in 1957 for an IBM 704.

Prisoner, The

Television series in the 1960s (1967-1968), starring Patrick McGoohan. In episode 11, entitled Checkmate, the Village courtyard is converted into a gigantic chess board with the Villagers themselves as the chess pieces. Number 6 (McGoohan) takes his position as the Queen’s Pawn, and plans for his escape. With humans as the pieces, they are moved by two Villagers using megaphones.

Prisons and chess

In 1960 Bobby Fischer gave a simultaneous exhibition at Rikers Island prison. He defeated all 20 prisoners while 2,400 inmates watched the exhibition and the prison band played. In 1971 a prisoner failed to return to Western Penitentiary from a chess match at Carnegie-Mellon University. A week later a second prisoner escaped after a chess tournament. The warden remarked, "I'm afraid we won't be invited back to the university if this keeps up." In 1972 Claude Bloodgood escaped from prison after being escorted to a chess tournament. He was captured a few weeks later.

Pritchard, Elaine Saunders (1926- )

British Ladies Champion (1939, 1946, 1956, 1965) and World under-21 Ladies Champion at age 13. She was the youngest person to win the British Ladies’ Championship until 2000, when Humpy Koneru won it at the age of 13 years and 4 months.


The $300 first place money for the first American Chess Congress was refused by Morphy. Instead, he accepted a silver pitcher, four goblets, and a silver tray. He defeated Stanley in a match, giving odds of pawn and move. Morphy gave the $100 prize money to Stanley's wife and children. As a mark of gratitude, she named her next daughter Pauline. At Paris, 1867, 1st prize was a vase worth 5,000 francs and presented to the winner by the Emperor Napoleon III. It wasn't until the 1890 Steinitz-Gunsberg world championship match that the loser took a share of the prize money. The first place prize for the winner of the Tarrasch-Mieses match in 1916 was a half-pound of butter. At the same time in a metropolitan event in New York, the winner was given a keg of schmaltz herring. When Fischer won the world championship, he got $250,000. This amount exceeded the sum total of awards presented for all previous 27 title matches held since 1886. When Spassky won the world championship three years earlier, he only got $1,400. That was less than the first official world championship match between Steinitz and Tchigorin, with Steinitz receiving $2,000. The largest tournament prize fund was $150,200 for the 1985 World Open. In a tournament in Ohio in 1983, the profit of the event went to the Ohio Nuclear Weapons Freeze campaign. In 1845 the first place prize for the U.S. Championship was $1,000. Hundred and fifteen years later in 1960 the first place prize for the U.S. Championship was still $1,000. In a blitz tournament with Nimzovich and Hans Kmoch playing, first place was three shirts. Hans Kmoch won them.

Problems, Chess

The first composed chess problem was by the caliph Mutasim Billah of Baghdad around 840 A.D. The earliest known European collections of chess problems were copied at the English monasteries of Abbotsbury and Cerne Abbey in Dorset around 1250. In 1295 Nicholas de St. Nicholai wrote the Bonus Socius, the first great compilation of chess problems. The first problem-solving chess contest was held in London in 1854. It was won by Walter Grimshaw. The tournament was sponsored by the Chess Player’s Chronicle and limited to British composers only. The first study-composing tournament was held in 1862 and won by Bernhard Horwitz. The longest solution to a composed problem requires 292 moves.


The first child prodigy of chess was Paul Morphy. He learned the moves at 8 and beat the strongest players in New Orleans at 11. Reshevsky was taught the moves at 4 and was able to play a blindfold game at age 8. Max Euwe learned the game at 4 and won a tournament at 10 with a 100% score. Arturo Pomar was the champion of the Balearic Islands at 11. Neaz Murshid won the National Championship of Bangladesh at 11. Capablanca beat the Cuban champion in a match at 12 and was giving simultaneous exhibitions at that age. Kasparov won the USSR junior championship at 12. Henrique Mecking was the Champion of Brazil at 13 and tied for first place in the South American championship at 14. FIDE master Michael Adams of England had a rating of 2405 in 1986, highest ever by a 13-year-old.

Prokofiev, Sergei (1891-1953)

Russian music composer who probably was the most devoted music composer to chess. He was strong enough to be a professional chess player. He may be best remembered for his symphonic fairy tale Peter and the Wolf and his piano concertos. He also played chess throughout his entire life. He learned chess at the age of 7, and took chess lessons from his cousin, a student at Moscow University. He was a good friend with Capablanca and defeated him in a simultaneous exhibition (St. Petersburg, 1914). He also drew with Lasker (St. Petersburg, 1914) and lost a game to him (Paris, 1933), and lost to Botvinnik (1940 and 1951). He died on March 5, 1953, the same day as Stalin. Because of this, his death went unreported for a whole week.

Pronunciation of Chess Players and Terms

Adorjan (A-door-yan), Andras – Hungarian Grandmaster

Alekhine (Al-YECK-in), Alexander – former world champion

Barcza (BAR-tza), Gedeon – Hungarian Grandmaster

Bernstein (BERN-shtyne), Ossip – Russian Grandmaster

Bisguier (BIS-gire), Arthur – American Grandmaster

Bogojubow (Bo-go-LYU-bov), Efim – German Grandmaster

Book (Bek), Eero – Finnish Grandmaster

Botvinnik (bot-VIN-ik), Mikhail – former world champion

Caissa (Ki-E-sa) – goddess of chess

Caro Kann (KAH-ro KAHN) – opening named after Horatio Caro and Marcus Kann

Chajes (KHAH-yes) – strong master

Charousek (Kha-ROO-sek), Rudolf – Hungarian master

Chiburdanidze (Tchee-boor-dah-NID-zay), Maya – former women's world champion

Colle (KAW-lee), Edgard – Belgium champion

Csom (Chom), Istvan – Hungarian Grandmaster

En passant (ahn pah-SAHNT) – special method of capturing

En prise (ahn preez) – piece hanging

Euwe (UHR-vuh), Max – former world champion

Fedorowicz (Fe-do-RO-vich), John – American Grandmaster

Fianchetto (fee-an-KET-toe) – development of the bishop on b2, g2, b7, or g7

Gligoric (Glee-GO-rich), Svetozar – Yugoslav Grandmaster

Grunfeld (GREWN-feld), Ernst – Austrian Grandmaster

Giuoco Piano (JOKE-o Pee-AH-no) – Italian Opening

Ivanchuk, (Ee-VAHN-chook) Vassily (vass-silly) – Russian Grandmaster

J'adoube (Zha-DOOB) – I adjust

Jaenisch (YAY-nish), Carl – Russian player and author

Janowsky (Yan-OF-sky), Dawid – Polish master

Kasparov (Kahs-SPAHR-off), Garry – PCA world champion

Kavalek (kuh-VAHL-ek), Lubomir – American grandmaster

Keres (KEHR-uhs), Paul – Soviet Grandmaster

Kmoch (k-MOTCH), Hans – chess master and writer

Kortchnoi (KORCH-noy), Viktor – Swiss Grandmaster

Labourdonnais (lah-boor-do-NAY), Louis – 19th century player

Lange (LAHN-guh), Max – German player and author

Lein (Lane), Anatoly – American Grandmaster

Ljubojevic (Luh-BOY-yuh-vitch), Ljubomir – Yugoslav Grandmaster

Lucena (Lou-CHAYN-uh), Luis – 15th century chess author

Maroczy (muh-ROT-see), Geza – Hungarian Grandmaster

Najdorf (NIGH-dorf), Miguel – Argentine Grandmaster

Petroff (PEHT-roff), Alexander – Russian master

Pirc (Peerts), Vasja – Yugoslav Grandmaster

Planinc (PLAN-ints), Albin – Yugoslav Grandmaster

Ponomariov (Ponn-no-MAH-rre-ov), Ruslan (Roos-lanh) – Russian Grandmaster

Przepiorka (Pshe-purer-ka), David – Polish master

Reti (RAY-tee), Richard – Hungarian master

Robatsch (RO-bahtsch), Karl – Austrian Grandmaster

Ruy Lopez (Rue-y Lopeth) – 16th century Spanish priest and player

Saemisch (SAME-ish), Friedrich – German Grandmaster

Schevenigen (sheh-VEN-i-gen) – pairing system and Sicilian Defense variation

Schliemann (SHLEE-mon), Adolf – German player and opening analyst

Spassky (SPAHS-kee), Boris – former world chess champion

Stean (Steen), Michael – British Grandmaster

Stein (Shtayne), Leonid – Soviet Grandmaster

Steinitz (Styne-itz), William – former world champion

Tal (Tahl), Mikhail – former world champion

Tarrasch (tuh-ROSH), Siegbert – German master

Timman (TEE-mahn), Jan – Dutch Grandmaster

Winawer (WIN-ah-wer), Szymon – Polish master

Xie Jun (She-a June) – former world women’s champion

Zugzwang (TSOOKS-vahng), position in which the move makes a worse result

Zukertort (SOOK-er-tort), Johann – German master

Zvjiginsev (Zvya-GIN-tsev), Vdim – Russian grandmaster

Zwischenzug (TSVEYE-shun-tsook) – in-between move

Przepiorka, David (1880-1940)

Polish chess master who was the first Polish chess champion (1926). He played in two chess Olympiads for Poland (1930 and 1931). He was editor of the Polish chess magazine Swiat Szachowy and one of the richest men in Warsaw. In 1940 he was arrested by the Germans at a Warsaw chess club and was killed in a mass execution at a concentration camp outside Warsaw.

Psakhis, Lev (1958- )

Grandmaster (1982) now living in Israel. His FIDE rating is 2542. He was USSR champion in 1980 and 1981.

Purdy, Cecil (1906-1979)

Grandmaster of Correspondence Chess (1953) and winner of the first world correspondence chess championship (1950-1953). In 1923, at the age of 17, he won the New Zealand Championship. In 1929 he founded the Australasian Chess Review (later named Check!, then Chess World). He was the editor for nearly 40 years. He won the Australian Correspondence Championship in 1937 and 1945. He was the champion of Australia in 1935, 1937, 1949, and 1951. He earned the International Master title in 1951. His son was the junior champion of Australia. He won the Australian championship four times and held the Australian Correspondence Championship for 16 years in a row. Both Purdy's father-in-law Spencer Crakenthorp (champion from 1926 to 1929), and his son John (champion in 1962) have been champions of Australia. He died of a heart attack while playing a game of chess during the Sydney Championships. His last words were, "I have a win, but it will take some time." His opponent was Ian Parsonage. He was born in Egypt. He learned to play chess from an encyclopedia at age 15. He played only 46 correspondence games in his entire life (won 34, drew 10, lost 2).


Originally called mantri (a minister or counselor), it could only move to one adjacent diagonal square. When chess came to Europe, the Queen could leap three squares. By 1475 the Queen obtained its present power of moving along the ranks and files or diagonals. Early rules in some countries did not allow a promotion of a pawn to a second queen on the board because that was thought of as promoting bigamy or adultery, and not allowed.

Queen's Gambit

In the 1927 World Championship Match, the Queen's Gambit Declined was played in 32 out of 34 games.

Quevedo, Leonardo Torres y (1852-1936)

Spanish engineer and mathematician who built the first true automaton, El Ajedristica, in 1910. It automatically played the endgame of King and Rook against King from any position without any human intervention. He demonstrated his chess playing machine at the Paris World Fair in 1914. In 1894 he build an algebraic equation solver. In 1903, he built the world’s first apparatus controlled by radio control. He later demonstrated this by guding a boat from the shore. In 1905 he built Spain’s first dirigible. In 1910 he became President of the Royal Academy of Exact Sciences in Madrid. In 1916 he built a cable car across the Niagra Falls, which is still in use today.

Quinteros, Miguel (1947- )

Argentine Grandmaster (1973) who won the Argentina championship at age 18. In 1987, was barred from playing in FIDE events for three years because he played in South Africa, a FIDE-forbidden country. Quinteros was the first grandmaster to visit South Africa since 1981. He gave simultaneous exhibitions in Cape Town, Sun City and Johannesburg. He is married to a former model from the Philippines that he met at the 1973 Manila International. In 1979 he missed round 1 of the Atlantic Open in Washington D.C. because he thought the tournament was in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Quinteros-Szmetan, Buenos Aires 1979
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 e6 3.c4 b6 4.g3 Ba6 5.Qc2 c5 6.Bg2 Bb7 7.O-O cxd4 8.Nxd4 Bxg2 9.Kxg2 Qc8 10.e4 Nc6 11.Nf3 Qb7 12.Qe2 d6 13.Rd1 Be7 14.Bf4 Rd8 15.Nc3 O-O 16.Rd2 a6 17.Rad1 Qb8 18.h3 Ne5 19.c5 Nxf3 20.cxd6 Bxd6 21.Bxd6 1-0

Rabar, Braslav (1919-1973)

Yugoslav International Master (1950). In 1950, he won the gold medal in the Dubrovnik Chess Olympiad. He was Yugoslav champion in 1951 and 1953. He played in 13 Yugoslav championships. He took 14th-15th in the 1955 Goteborg Interzonal. He designed the Encyclopedia of Chess Openings (ECO) opening classification system used in Chess Informant.

Rabinovich, Abram (1878-1943)

Moscow champion in 1926. He was the brother of Ilya Rabinovich.

Rabinovich, Ilya ( 1891-1942)

First Soviet master to be allowed to a major international chess tournament outside the USSR. He played at Baden-Baden, Germany in 1925. This tournament was won by Alekhine. Rabinovich took 7th place. In 1927 he wrote the first Russian chess book on endgames. In 1934, he shared 1st place with Levenfish in the USSR Championship. He was Leningrad champion in 1920, 1925, 1928, and 1940. Rabinovich died of malnutrition during the siege of Leningrad. He had been Leningrad champion 11 times. He was Jewish.

Rabinovich – Vainstein, Triberg 1914
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Bc4 d5 4.Bxd5 Qh4+ 5.Kf1 Ne7 6.Nf3 Qh5 7.Nc3 g5 8.h4 h6 9.Bxf7+ Qxf7 10.Ne5 Qf6 11.Qh5+ Kd8 12.Nf7+ Kd7 13.Nxh8 Bg7 14.Nf7 Ng6 15.Nxh6 Nxh4 16.Qf7+ Kd8 17.Nd5 1-0

Rachels, Stuart (1970- )

In 1981 Stuart Rachels, from Birmingham, Alabama, became the youngest master in U.S. history at the age of 11 years, 10 months. He became the first chessplayer in the United States to become a master before the age of 12. He learned the game a few weeks prior to his 9th birthday, taught by his older brother. He won the 1982 $1,000 Aspis Prize after winning the U.S. Junior High School Championship and the U.S. Junior Open Championship. He has participated in a record seven U.S. Junior Championships. He tied for first place in the 1989 U.S. Championship (with Dzindzihashvili and Seirawan), despite being the lowest rated player. He retired from active play in 1993 with a USCF rating of 2605. He is a professor at the University of Alabama.

Radio Match

The 1945 USA-USSR Radio Chess Match was the first international sports event since the outbreak of World War II. It was also the first international chess match played by radio. It marked the debut of the USSR in international sport. Never before had a team representing the USSR played another country in any form of sport. Mayor LaGuardia made the opening move for the U.S. Ambassador Averill Harriman officiated the match in Moscow. The first shortwave radio match in the US occurred between Ed Lasker in Chicago and Norman Whitaker in Washington, D.C. in 1920.

Radjabov, Teimour (1987- )

Grandmaster from Azerbaijan. In 1999, he won the European Under-18 championship. In 2002, at the age of 14 years and 14 days, he became the youngest Grandmaster in history. In 2003, he became the youngest player ever to defeat Garry Kasparov. His current rating is 2682, the highest in Azerbaijan.

Radulov, Ivan (1939- )

Grandmaster (1972) from Bulgaria. He was the Bulgarian Champion in 1971, 1974, 1977, and 1980. His FIDE rating is 2539.

Raging Rooks

Chess team at Adam Clayton Powell Junior High School in Harlem. The chess team grew out of an initiative to teach the game in one of the most troubled neighborhoods in New York. They tied for first place at the US Junior High School Chess Championship in Dearborn, Michigan in 1991 (coached by Maurice Ashley). When they returned to New York, Bob Guccione, publisher of Penthouse, threw a party for them in his Upper East Side townhouse.

Ragozin, Viacheslav (1908-1962)

Soviet grandmaster (1950). In 1944 Ragozin trained with Botvinnik for the USSR Championship. They trained with a radio going full blast in the room to get accustom to a possibly noisy tournament hall. Ragozin ended up in 14th place out of 17 and blamed his results on the unusual quietness of the tournament hall! Ragozin was Botvinnik’s second in the 1948 world championship tournament and in the 1951 world championship match. He was also a correspondence chess grandmaster, winning the 2nd world correspondence chess championship (1956-1959). Professionally, he was a building engineer. The Ragozin variation is 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 Bb4.

Ragozin – Boleslavsky, Sverdlovsk 1942
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Nxf6+ exf6 6.Bc4 Bd6 7.Qe2+ Be7 8.Nf3 O-O 9.O-O Bd6 10.Re1 Bg4 11.Qe4 Bh5 12.Nh4 Nd7 13.Qf5 Nb6 14.Qxh5 Nxc4 15.Bh6 Qd7 16.Bxg7 Kxg7 17.Nf5+ Kh8 18.Re4 Bxh2+ 19.Kh1 1-0

Rahl (Rall), Johan Gottlieb (1720-1776)

British commander (Colonel) of the Hessians (mercenary troops from Germany employed by the British) in Trenton, New Jersey when George Washington crossed the Delaware river with his army and attacked on December 26, 1776. Col Rahl (or Rall) had 1,500 soldiers and Washington had over 2,400 men. Rahl and 40 others in his army were killed during the battle The Americans had two killed, two wounded (one of them was James Monroe) and three that were frozen to death. Washington’s army at Trenton included James Madison, James Monroe, John Marshall, Aaron Burr, and Alexander Hamilton. Earlier, an outlaw named Moses Doan observed Washington’s army was on the move and surmised that their intention was to surprise the British and Hessians at Trenton. He delivered a note (“Washington is coming on you down the river. He will be here afore long …Doan”) informing Col Rahl that Washington was about to cross the Delaware. Col Rahl received the note, but was annoyed at being interrupted from his chess game, and put the note in his vest pocket. The unread note was found on Rahl’s body the next day. This story has been repeated in various sources. Governor Rodman Price (1916-1894), who was governor of New Jersey from 1854 to 1857, repeated this story in his speeches while governor. Emanual Lasker wrote an article of Colonel Rahl and the chess theme in his Lasker’s Chess Magazine Volume 7 (Nov 1907-April 1908). Gerald Abrahams mentioned this story in his book Not Only Chess, published in 1974. The story has been repeated, except that Col Rahl was at a card party, not playing chess. Moses Doan was later shot while robbing a house.

Raicevic, Vladimir (1949- )

Grandmaster (1976) from Serbia and Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2453.

Rajcsanyi, Zita (1973- )

Hungarian chess player who was a former girl friend to Bobby Fischer in the 1990s. She accompanied Fischer during his stay in Yugoslavia in 1992.

Rajkovic, Dusan (1942- )

Grandmaster (1977) from Serbia and Montenegro. He was Yugoslav Champion in 1983. His FIDE rating is 2461.

Ranken, Charles Edward (1828-1905)

Born in Brislington, near Bristol, on January 5, 1828. He learned chess as a schoolboy and became a strong player while attending Wadham College, Oxford. He graduated from Oxford in 1850. He took 2nd place at the 1851 London Provincial Tournament, losing to Samuel Boden. In 1867, he became Vicar at Sandford-on-Thames near Oxford. In April, 1869, he founded the Oxford University Chess Club with Lord Randolph Churchill (Winston Churchill’s father), and became its first president. In 1869, he tied for 2nd-3rd at the 5th British Counties Chess Association Congress in York, England. The event was won by reverend Arthur Skipworth. The Counties Chess Association was organized for amateur players outside London. In 1871, he moved to Malvern, England and stayed there the rest of his life. In 1872, he won the 8th British Counties Chess Association Congress in Malvern. Ranken participated in several correspondence matches and took 1st place in the British Chess Association’s 1872 competition. From 1877 to September 1880, Ranken was the editor of the : Chess Player’s Chronicle. In 1878, he took 2nd at the 14th British Counties Chess Association Congress in London. The event was won by Edmund Thorold. In 1881, he won the 16th British Counties Chess Association Congress in Leamington, England. In 1883, he took 5th-6th place at the Vizayanagaram tournament in London. The event was won by Von Bardeleben. In 1889, he published, in collaboration with E. Freeborough, Chess Openings Ancient and Modern. This was the predecessor of Modern Chess Openings.

Rantanen, Yrjo (1950- )

Grandmaster (1981) from Finland. He won the Finnish Championship in 1976 and 1978. His FIDE rating is 2349.

Rashkovsky, Nukhim (1946- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2524.


The first organization to adopt a numerical rating system was the Correspondence Chess League of America in 1933. The first USCF rating list appeared in the November 20, 1950 issue of Chess Life. Ken Harkness rated 2,306 players from events from 1921 to 1950. The highest rated players were Fine (2817), Reshevsky (2770), Kevitz (2610), Dake (2598), Simonson (2596), Reinfeld (2593), Denker (2575), Kashdan (2574), and Horowitz (2558). Masters were anyone over 2300, experts anyone over 2100. The first British Grading List was published in 1954 and had 49 players listed. The first international Elo rating list appeared in 1969. The highest rated players were Fischer (2720), Spassky (2690), Korchnoi (2680), Botvinnik (2660), Petrosian (2650), Larsen (2630), Smyslov, Portisch, and Geller (2620). The first official FIDE rating list was published on July 1, 1971. Fischer’s rating was 2760. There were 83 grandmasters on the first official FIDE rating list.

Rausis, Igors (1961- )

Grandmaster from Bangladesh. His FIDE rating is 2498.

Rauzer, Vsevolod (1908-1941)

Soviet chess master and theorist. He shared first place in the Ukraine championship in 1933. He took 2nd place in the 1936 Leningrad Championship. He played several times in the Soviet championship. He died during the siege of Leningrad. He is credited for inventing the Rauzer Attack, 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Bg5.

Freyman – Rauzer, Leningrad 1934
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Be7 5.e3 O-O 6.Nf3 Nbd7 7.Rc1 a6 8.cxd5 exd5 9.Bd3 c6 10.O-O Re8 11.Rc2 Nf8 12.Ne5 Be6 13.f4 N6d7 14.Bxe7 Rxe7 15.Ng4 Bxg4 16.Qxg4 Rxe3 17.Rd2 Nf6 18.Qh4 Ng6 19.Bxg6 hxg6 20.f5 gxf5 21.Rxf5 Ne4 22.Qxd8+ Rxd8 23.Re5 Re1 mate 0-1

Razuvaev, Yuri (1945- )

Grandmaster from Russia (1976). He tied for 1st in the USSR Young Masters championship. His FIDE rating is 2540.

Rechlis, Gad (1967- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2511.

Ree, Hans (1944- )

Dutch grandmaster (1980). He was twice Junior champion of Amsterdam. He was a student of mathematics and philosophy at Amsterdam University, but gave it up to be a full time chess professional. He was Netherlands Champion in 1967, 1969, 1971, and 1982. He is a chess journalist and commentator.

Regan, Kenneth (1959- )

Chess prodigy and International Master (1980) who was a master at age 12. In 1973, he was the first player to break Bobby Fischer’s record of America’s youngest master. In 1977 he tied for 1st place in the U.S. Junior Invitational. He won a Marshall scholarship and earned his Ph.D. in mathematics at Oxford. He is now an associate professor at the University of Buffalo, Department of Computer Science, working in complexity theory.

Reggio Emilia

In 1991-92 the first Category 18 tournament and the strongest ever held (average rating was 2676) up to that time occurred in Reggio Emilia, Italy. It was won by Viswanathan Anand, ahead of Kasparov and Karpov. As of 2005, there have been 47 Reggio Emilia tournaments.

Reilly, Brian (1901-1991)

Irish master. He won the Irish championship in 1959 and 1960.He was the editor of the British Chess Magazine from 1949 to 1981.

Reinfeld, Fred (1910-1964)

Author of 260 books on chess, checkers, coins, geology, history, and astronomy. He wrote at least 102 books on chess alone. He also wrote chess books under the name of Robert Masters and Edward Young. He was a master chess player who won the U.S. Intercollegiate Chess Championship, the New York State Championship (twice), the Marshall Chess Club Championship, and the Manhattan Chess Club Championship. He was invited to play in the U.S. Championship but declined. He was one of the top 10 players in the US in the late 1940s and early 1950s. He taught chess at Columbia University and New York University. His chess books include:

100 Instructive Games of Alekhine; The Unknown Alekhine; Botvinnik’s Best Games; The Immortal Games of Capablanca; The Fireside Book of Chess; Winning Chess; Chess Strategy and Tactics; Colle’s Chess Masterpieces; 51 Brilliant Chess Masterpieces; M. Euwe: From My Games, 1920-1937; Alekhine vs. Bogoljubuw: World Chess Championship 1934; Flohr vs Botvinnik 1933; Chess Traps, Pitfalls, and Swindles; First Book of Chess; How to Improve Your Chess; The Macmillan Handbook of Chess; Hastings 1936-37; Margate, 1935; Warsaw International Chess Team Tournament, 1935; Kemeri Tournament 1937; Semmering-Baden 1937; Keres’ Best Games of Chess, 1931-1948; Dr. Lasker’s Chess Career; The Art of Chess; The Principles of Chess in Theory and Practice; 35 Nimzovich Games; United States Chess Championship 1948; Two Weeks to Winning Chess; 100 Instructive Games of Alekhine; 1001 Brilliant Ways to Checkmate; 1001 Chess Sacrifices and Combinations; 1001 Ways to Checkmate; 101 Chess Problems for Beginners; Attack and Counterattack in Chess; Beginner’s Guide to Winning Chess; Cambridge Springs 1904; Botvinnik, The Invincible; British Chess Masters: Past and Present; Challenge To Chessplayers, A Chess Manual; Chess: Win in 20 Moves or Less; Chess At A Glance; Chess By Yourself; Chess For Amateurs; Chess For Children; Chess For Young People; Chess in a Nutshell; Chess is an Easy Game; The Chess Masters On Winning Chess; Chess Mastery By Question and Answer; A Chess Primer; Chess Quiz; Chess Secrets Revealed; Chess Victory: Move By Move; Complet Book of Chess Openings; Complet Book of Chess Stratagems; Complete Book of Chess Tactics; The Complete Chess Course; The Complete Chess Player; Creative Chess; E.S. Lowe’s Chess in 30 Minutes; The Easiest Way to Learn Chess; Eighth Book of Chess: How to Play the Queen Pawn Openings; The Elements of Combination play in Chess; An Expert’s Guide to Chess Strategy; Fifth Book of Chess: How to Win When You’re Ahead; Fourth Book of Chess: How to Play the Black Pieces; Great Brilliancy Prize Games of the Chess Masters; The Great Chess Masters and Their Games; Great Games by Chess Prodigies; Great Moments in Chess; Great Short Games of the Chess Masters; How Do You Play Chess?; How to be a Winner at Chess; How to Beat Your Opponent Quickly; How to Force Checkmate; Challenge to Chess Players; How to Get More Out of Chess; How to Play Better Chess; How to Play Chess Like A Champion; How to Play Winning Chess; How to Win Chess Games Quickly; The Human Side of Chess; Hypermodern Chess; Improving Your Chess; Second Book of Chess:The Nine Bad Moves, and How to Avoid Them; Instructive and Practical Endings from Master Chess; The Joys of Chess; Lasker’s Greatest Chess Games, 1910-1964; Learn Chess From the Masters’ Modern Fundamentals of Chess; Morphy Chess Masterpieces; A New Approach to Chess Mastery; Nimzovich: The Hypermodern; Practical Endgame Play; Reinfeld Explains Chess; Reinfeld on the Endgame in Chess; Relax With Chess; The Secret of Tactical Chess; Seventh Book of Chess: How to Play the King Pawn Openings; Sixth Book of Chess: How to Fight Back; Third Book of Chess: How to Play the White Pieces; A Treasury of British Chess Masterpieces; The Treasury of Chess Lore; The Way to Better Chess; Why You Lose At Chess; Win At Chess; Winning Chess For Beginners; Winning Chess Openings; Championship Chess; Tarrasch’s Best Games of Chess; Ventnor City Tournament, 1939.

Religion and chess

Chess was condemned and forbidden by the Eastern Orthodox Church in 1093. The Church stamped out chess in Russia as a relic of heathenism. In 1125 John Zonares, a former captain of the Byzantine imperial guard, became a monk and issued a directive banning chess as a kind of debauchery. In 1128 Saint Bernard of Clairvaux forbade the Order of the Knights Templars of playing chess. In 1195 the rabbi Maimonides included chess among the forbidden games. He declared chessplayers to be unworthy of credence in the courts of law. In 1208 Odo Sully, Bishop of Paris, decreed that chess be banned from the clergy. In 1240 chess was forbidden to the clergy and monastic orders by the Worcester Synod of England. In 1254 King Louis IX, under influence of the Church, issued an edict forbidding chess as a useless and boring game. In 1260 King Henry III instructed the clergy to leave chess alone "on pain of durance vile." In 1291 John Peckman, Archbishop of Cantebury, threatened to put the prior and canons of Norfolk on a diet of bread and water unless they desisted from playing chess. In 1299 the Clemintine Kormch was written containing a series of directions and advice on conduct of priests at ordination. It included forbidding chess play. In 1310 chess was forbidden to the clergy in Germany in the decree from the Council of Trier. In 1322 the Jewish rabbi Kalonymos ben Kalonymos condemned chess in his Eben Bohan. In 1329 chess was banned by the clergy in the Synod of Wurzburg in Germany. In 1375 King Charles V (Charles the Wise) of France prohibited chess in France. In 1380 William of Wykeham, founder of Oxford and Winchester College, included chess among the noxious, inordinate, and unhonest games forbidden to scholars. In 1390 John I of Aragon forbade chess. In 1392 Charles VI (Charles the Well-Beloved) decreed that chess be banned. Soon after, he became insane. In 1405 Johann Huss, famed Bohemian religious reformer, sought repentance for loss of self-control at the chess table. In 1416 the Jews of Forli bound themselves not to play any game of chance for 10 years. Exceptions were made for chess. In 1420 Werner von Orseln, the Grand Master of the Teutonic Order, abandoned the prohibition of chess on the grounds that chess was a proper amusement for a knight. In 1467 Charles the Bold forbade dice or cards but allowed chess to be played on suitable occasions. In 1495 Pedro Arbues, Dominican member of the Inquisition, ordered victims of persecutions to stand in as figures in a game of living chess. The game was played by two blind monks. Each time the captured piece was taken, the person representing that piece was put to death. By 1500 chess became a recognized pastime for Jews on the Sabbath and other festivals. In 1549 the Protohierarch Sylvester wrote his Domostroi (Houshold Government). In his chapter on evil living, he stated that those who play chess shall all dwell in hell together, and shall be accursed on earth. In 1551 Ivan IV of Russia banned chess and labeled it a pastime of Hellenic devilry. In Moscow the leading clerics compiled the Stoglav Collection which included the prohibition of chess. In the mid 15th century Saint Teresa, a Spanish conventical reformer, mentioned chess in her religious writings. She used chess to illustrate her meditations about ethics and faith. The Church authorities in Spain proclaimed her patron of chessplayers. In 1570 a church manuscript dealt with the ecclesiastical punishment imposed on chessplayers. The punishment was as follows: "If any of the clergy play chess, he shall be dismissed from his office. If a clerk or layman play, he shall do public penance for two years, and make 200 obediances each day, because the game is derived from the lawless Chaldeans, the priests of idols. It is a temptation of Satan. After the plague of Cremona in 1575, all games were considered primary evils and the cause of all troubles. All games, except chess, were prohibited for a year. In the late 16th century a Russian book on regulations was published forbidding chess. Clergymen associated the game with witchcraft and heresy. In 1649 the Czar Alexei found some players playing the forbidden game of chess. He had them whipped and imprisoned. The Puritans greatly disliked the game and discouraged chess play.

Renet, Olivier (1964- )

Grandmaster from France. His FIDE rating is 2497.

Reshevsky, Samuel (1911-1992)

Born Schmul Rzeszewski in Ozerkov, Poland, Sammy came to the USA in 1920. He learned chess at 4 and was giving exhibitions at 8. As a 9-year old, his first American simultaneous exhibition was with 20 officers and cadets at the Military Academy at West Point. He won 19 games and drew one. He toured the country and played over 1,500 games as a 9-year old in simultaneous exhibitions and only lost 8 games. In his early years he did not go to school and his parents ended up in Manhattan Children's Court on charges of improper guardianship. His benefactor was Julius Rosenwald, founder of Sears & Roebuck. He abandoned chess for 10 years to pursue a vocation as an accountant, receiving an accounting degree from the University of Chicago in 1933. He won the US Open in 1944. He won the U.S. Championship seven times. His first U.S. Championship win was in 1936. His last U.S. Championship win was 1971. Between 1936 and 1942, he had a streak of 75 games without a loss in U.S. Championship competition. In 1981, at the age of 70, he tied for 3rd place in the U.S. Championship. In 1984, at the age of 72, he took first place in a grandmaster tournament in Reykjavik, Iceland. When he died in 1992 of a heart attack he had played 11of the 13 world champions. He played in 21 U.S. Championships, from 1936 to 1981.

Reshevsky – Salgado, Long Beach 1988
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.c4 Bg7 4.Nc3 O-O 5.e4 d6 6.Be2 c5 7.O-O cxd4 8.Nxd4 Nc6 9.Be3 Bd7 10.Qd2 a6 11.f3 Qa5 12.Nb3 Qb4 13.Qd1 Na5 14.e5 1-0

Reshevsky – Denker, Syracuse 1934
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.e4 d6 5.Be2 Nxe5 6.f4 Ng4 7.Nf3 Nc6 8.O-O Bd7 9.Nc3 Be7 10.h3 Nf6 11.e5 dxe5 12.fxe5 Ng8 13.Be3 f6 14.Bd3 fxe5 15.Ng5 Nf6 16.Rxf6 Bxf6 17.Qh5+ g6 18.Bxg6+ hxg6 19.Qxg6+ (19...Ke7 20.Bc5 mate) 1-0

Reti, Richard (1889-1929)

One of the founders of the hypermodern school of chess, along with Nimzovich, Tartakower, and Breyer. He was born in Hungary and went ti Vienna to study mathematics, but gave that up for chess. Richard Reti played in both the Hungarian and Czechoslovakian national championship in the same year. In 1924, Reti defeated Capablanca in the great 1924 New York tournament. It was Capablanca’s first defeat in 10 years. In 1925 he went to South America and played 29 games simultaneously, blindfolded. It was a record at the time. He was hit by a street car and taken to a hospital to heal in Prague. While in the hospital he contracted scarlet fever, which killed him. He was 40 years old. He was the author of the classic Modern Ideas in Chess.

Reti – N.N., Vienna 1913
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Bc5 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.Nxe5 Nxe5 5.d4 Bxd4 6.Qxd4 Qf6 7.Nb5 Kd8 8.Qc5 (threatening 9.Qf8 mate and 9.Qxc7+) 1-0

Revolutionary War

On Christmas night, 1776, George Washington crossed the Delaware River at Trenton, capturing 1,000 Hessian mercenaries under the command of Colonel Rahl. This surprise plan might have backfired, had it not been for chess. A loyalist near the American camp knew of the plan and sent his son with a

note to warn Colonel Rahl earlier that day. However, the colonel was so engrossed in a game of chess (although some sources say cards), that he simply put the note into his pocket unread. After the battle, the note was discovered, still unread, in the mortally wounded colonel's pocket.

Ribli, Zoltan (1951- )

Grandmaster (1973) from Hungary. He was European Junior Champion in 1968-69 and 1970-71. He was Hungarian Champion in 1973, 1974, and 1977. His FIDE rating is 2591.

Rice, Isaac (1850-1915)

Inventor of the unsound Rice Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.h4 g4 5.Ne5 Nf6 6.Bc4 d5 7.exd5 Bd6 8.O-O). He spent $50,000 subsidizing Rice Gambit events. He was a millionaire, president of the first company to make rubber tires, organized the first taxi service in New York, and one of the earliest developers of the submarine. He was a lecturer at Columbia University, then began the practice of railroad law. He was the founder of General Dynamics (Electric Boat Company) and sold the British Royal Navy its first submarine in 1901. He built the U.S. Navy’s first submarine. He was a chess patron and sponsored many chess tournaments and players in the early 20th century. The Rice Mansion was designed in 1900 and complete in 1903. Isaac Rice called it Villa Julia, after his wife (a physician). He had a fully equipped chess room made out of solid rock. Rice lived at Villa Julia from 1903 to 1907. The mansion was later an Orthodox Jewish school. The mansion is at the corner of Riverside Drive and West 89th Street in New York. He was born in Bavaria.

Richardson, Keith (1942- )

Awarded the title of International Grandmaster of Correspondence Chess in 1975, becoming the first British player to be awarded the title of Grandmaster for chess playing. He took 3rd place in the 7th and 10th World and 13th World Correspondence Championship Final.

Richter, Kurt (1900-1969)

German international master. He won the German championship in 1935. His nickname was the Scharfrichter (executioner) of Berlin.

Ries’s Divan 1849

The first modern chess tournament, held in London. It was a knockout event held at Samuel Ries’s cigar and drawing room adjoining the Divan in the Strand. In the first round, Elijah Williams beat Edward Flower, George Medley beat Henry Bird, John Medley beat James Finch, Edward Loewe beat Arthur Simons, Henry Buckle beat CF Smith, and William Tuckett beat JR Wise. In the 2nd round, Buckle beat Williams, G Medley beat Loewe, and J Medley beat Tucket. Followint that, Buckle defeated G Medley and J Medley to win the event. G. Medley beat J. Medley for 2nd place.

Riumin, Nikolai (1908-1942)

Soviet master and champion of Moscow in 1931, 1933, and 1935. He took 2nd, behind Botvinnik, in the 1931 USSR championship.

Rivas-Pastor, Manuel (1960- )

Spanish Grandmaster (1987). He was Spanish Champion in 1978, 1979, and 1981. His FIDE rating is 2445.

Riviere, Jules (1830-1906)

One of the leading French players of the 19th century.

Robatsch, Karl (1928-2000)

Austrian Grandmaster (1961). He was Austrian Champion in 1960 and won the gold medal for the best first-board result at the Leipzig Olympiad. He died of throat cancer.

Robertie, Bill

Chess master and former winner of the U.S. chess speed championship. He is considered the world’s best backgammon player and has won the world backgammon championship twice (1983 and 1987). He is the author of at least a dozen books on chess and backgammon. He graduated from Harvard and is a systems analyst.

Robinson, Sir Robert (1886-1975)

Won the 1947 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his investigations on plant products of biological importance. Served as the President of the Royal Society and President of the British Chess Federation from 1950 to 1953. He wrote The Art and Science of chess: A Step-by-Step Approach.

Rodriguez-Cespedes, Amador (1956- )

Grandmaster (1977) now living in Spain. He was born in Cuba. He was Cuban Champion in 1984. His FIDE rating in 2457.

Rodriguez, Andres (1973- )

Grandmaster (1997) from Uruguary. At 17, he won the Pan American championship under 20 and became the first International Master of Uruguay.His FIDE rating is 2523. He now lives in Argentina.

Rodriguez, Orestes (1943- )

Spanish Grandmaster (1978) who was born in Peru. His FIDE rating is 2448.

Rogard, Folke (1899-1973)

Second president of FIDE (after Dr. Alexander Rueb). He was FIDE president from 1949 to 1970. He was the Swedish Chess Federation President between 1939 and 1949. He was a lawyer in Stockholm by profession and could speak 5 languages. From 1944 to 1948 he was married to Swedish model and actress Viveca Lindfors. She co-starred with Ronald Reagan in Night Unto Night (1949).

Rogelio Antonio, Jr (1962- )

Grandmaster (1990) from the Philippines.

Rogers, Ian (1960- )

Grandmaster (1985) from Australia. He was Australian Champion in 1979 and 1985. He was joint Commonwealth Champion in 1983. His FIDE rating is 2569.

Roget, Peter Mark (1779-1869)

Author of Roget’s Thesaurus and devised the first pocket chess set in 1845. He was addicted to the game of chess. He contributed the first chess problems for the Illustrated London News. He was also a medical doctor, philologist, and inventor. He invented the slide rule and created the London sewage system.

Rogoff, Ken (1953- )

Chess grandmaster (1978) who gave up chess to become the chief economist at the World Bank and was a professor at Princeton and Harvard. He was a chess master and winner of the New York State Open at 14. He won the U.S. Junior Championship three times (1969, 1970, 1971). He was the first Junior Champion to successfully defend his title. In 1970 he played Board 1 on the U.S. student team that captured 1st place in the 17thAnnual World Student Team Championship. He took 3rd place (behind Hug and Ribli) in the 1971 World Junior Championship in Athens. He took 2nd place in the 1975 US Championship. He has a PhD from MIT in Economics. He had gone to Yale and MIT, and dropped out of MIT to play chess. In 1978 he quit chess and earned his Ph.D. in Economics in 1980.

Rogozenko, Dorin (1973- )

Romanian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2517.

Rohde, Michael (1959- )

Grandmaster (1988) and winner of the first National Scholastic Junior High Chess Championship, in 1973. He was a chess master at the age of 13. He was the first American since Fischer to achieve a 2300 rating at age 14. He won the 1991 US Open. He is a former National Junior High (1973), National High School (1974 – while still in Junior High) and US Junior Champion (1976). In 1974, at the age of 14, he became the youngest player ever to win the National High School Chess Championship. In 1976, at the age of 16, he was the youngest American since Fischer to gain an IM norm.

Wilder – Rohde, Colorado 1987
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 d5 4.Nc3 Be7 5.Bg5 O-O 6.e3 Nbd7 7.Qc2 c5 8.O-O-O dxc4 9.Bxc4 Qa5 10.h4 cxd4 11.Rxd4 Bb4 12.Ne4 Nxe4 13.Qxe4 Nc5 14.Qf4 f6 15.Bh6 b5 16.Qg3 Rf7 17.Rhd1 Bb7 18.Bxg7 Rxg7 19.Rg4 Rxg4 20.Qxg4+ Kh8 21.Bxe6 Be4 0-1


In 1986 Rolling Stone Magazine included a section titled Glamour Couples of the Year. The top choices were 'Fergie and Andy, John and Tatum, Daniloff and Zakharov, Gorby and Raisa, and Karpov and Kasparov.'


The Romanian Chess Federation was founded in 1925. The first Romanian champion was A. Tyroler, who won it in 1926. He was the winner in 1927 and 1928 as well. Chess came under state sponsorship in 1946.

Romanishin, Oleg (1952- )

Soviet grandmaster (1976). In 1973 he won the European Junior championship.

Romanovsky, Peter (1892-1964)

International Master (1950) and Soviet champion in 1923 (2nd USSR Ch) and 1927 (with Bohatirchuk). He tied for first in the 1925 Leningrad championship. In 1935, he was the first Soviet chess player to be awarded Honored Master of Sport. During the terrible winter of 1941-42, a rescue party reached his home in Leningrad. They found Romanovsky half-conscious from starvation and cold. The rest of his family had frozen to death. All the furniture in the house had been used for firewood. In 1954, the Soviets withdrew their application for Romanovsky to receive the Grandmaster title. They based his GM title on his 1st place in the 1927 USSR championship. But because Fedor Bohatirchuk also took 1st place in 1927, and he was no longer recognized in the USSR (having defected), the USSR Chess Federation did not want to give the GM title to Bohatirchuk, so they withdrew the application for Romanovsky.

Romanovsky – Ilyin-Zhenevsky, Leningrad 1938
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 d5 4.Nc3 c5 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.e3 Nc6 7.Bd3 Be7 8.O-O O-O 9.a3 f5 10.Qe2 Kh8 11.Nxd5 Qxd5 12.dxc5 Bxc5 13.b4 Be7 14.Bb2 Bf6 15.Rfd1 Qb3 16.Bxf6 gxf6 17.Bc4 Qa4 18.Bb5 Qb3 19.Rd3 1-0

Romero Holmes, Alfonso (1965- )

Spanish grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2503.

Roosevelt, George Emlen (1887-1963)

Banker and cousin of both Frankin and Theodore Roosevelt. He was a chess patron and committee member to the US Chess Championship Committee in the 1930s. In the 1930s, he was President of the Marshall Chess Club.

Rosenfeld, Christine

First U.S. correspondence international woman master (1990). She is a medical doctor.

Roshal, Alexander

Editor-in-chief of 64-Chess Review who revitalized the Chess Oscar in the early 1990s. He was Karpov’s press agent.

Rossetto, Hector (1922- )

Argentine grandmaster (1960). He won the Argentinian championship in 1942, 1944, 1945, 1947, 1962, and 1972.

Rossolimo, Nicolas (1910-1975)

International Grandmaster (1953). Born in Kiev of Greek parents who moved to France, winning the Paris championship ten times. He won the French championship in 1948. In 1948/49 he was 1st at Hastings. He took 2nd at Hastings in 1949/50. He later moved to the U.S. in 1953. His first job was a bellhop at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York. He won the U.S. Open in Long Beach in 1955 (winning a new Buick). He made a record of Russian folk songs, earned a brown belt in judo, and was a taxi driver in Paris and New York City. He played on three U.S. Olympic teams (1958, 1960, 1966) and was on the French Olympic team in 1972. He operated a chess studio in Greenwich Village on Thompson Street. His son earned a Ph.D. at Harvard. He played in five U.S. Championships. He died in Greenwich village after falling down two flight of stairs after giving chess lessons late at night. He was found the next morning unconscious and died a few days later. A few weeks earlier he had taken 3rd place at the World Open. He learned chess at the age of 7 from his mother.

Rossolimo – Golombek, Venisce 1949
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 c5 5.a3 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 O-O 7.Bd3 d6 8.Ne2 Nc6 9.O-O e5 10.e4 Nh5 11.Be3 b6 12.f4 exf4 13.Nxf4 Nxf4 14.Rxf4 Qe7 15.Qh5 g6 16.Qf3 Bb7 17.Rf6 Nd8 18.d5 Qe5 19.Rf1 Bc8 20.Bh6 Bf5 21.Rxf5 gxf5 22.exf5 1-0

Rothschild, Baron Albert (1844-1911)

Richest person in the Austro-Hungarian empire who was also a chess patron. He was member and president of the Vienna Chess Society (Wiener Schachgesellschaft), founded in 1857. The baron financed the Vienna international tournaments from 1873 to 1903. He was a patron to Ignaz Kolisch, whom he had met in 1868. Rothschild also donated money for brilliancy prizes, such as 500 francs ($100) to the brilliancy prize at Cambridge Springs, Pennsylania in 1904.

Rotlewi, G. (1889-1920)

Polish master. In 1909, he came in 2nd, after Alekhine, in the All-Russian tournament in St. Petersburg.

Rotstein, Arkadij (1961- )

German grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2520.

Rou, Lewis

Perhaps the first known American chess author (1734), according to Daniel Fiske in his book, The Lost Manuscript of the Rev. Lewis Rou’s ‘Critical Remarks upon the letter to the Craftsman,’ published in Florence in 1902. Rou was a pastor of the Huguenot Protestant Church in New York City who wrote a tract relating to chess. This manuscript has not been found and may be a hoax.

Round Robin

The first round robin chess tournament in which a player played every other player was the London International in 1862. In this event, drawn games had to be replayed until there was a winner.

Rousseau, Eugene (1810-1870)

Born in France in 1810 and was a distant relative to Jean Jacques Rousseau. In 1839, he lost a 100-game match to Kieseritzky at the Café de la Regeance. Rousseau came to the United States in 1841, settling in New Orleans. In 1841, he lost to John Schulten in their first match in New Orleans (+10-11=0). In their second match in 1841, Rousseau defeated Schulten (+7-4=0). In 1842, he drew a match with B. Oliver (5.5-5.5). In 1843, Rousseau defeated Schulten in a match in New York (+13-8=0). In December 1845, Rousseau played Charles Henry Stanley at the Sazerac Coffee House in New Orleans for a stake of $1,000, winner-take-all. It was the first organized chess event in the United States and the first chess event held for the purpose of recognizing the best player in the United States. The term “US Champion” did not exist at the time. The match was to be won by the first player to win 15 games, draws not counting. There was no time limit to the games. Rousseau lost the match (+8-15=8). Rousseau’s second was Eugene Morphy, Paul Morphy’s uncle. Paul Morphy attended the match at the age of 8 and became interested in chess. In 1850, he lost a match with J. Lowenthal (+0-5). In 1867, Rousseau played in an international tournament in Paris with 12 other players. He took last place with 4 points out of 23. The tournament was won by Ignatz Kolisch. Rousseau died in 1870.

Royal Dutch Chess Society (Discendo Discimus)

Founded in 1852 in the Hague. It is the oldest chess club in the Netherlands.

Royal Game

The first reference to chess as the "Royal Game" appeared in the Reson and Sensuallyte by John Lydgate in 1425.

Roycroft, John (1929- )

English chess player and founder of the endgames magazine, EG ,which he started in 1965. He is the author of Test Tube Chess. He was a systems engineer for IBM for 26 years. He is chairman of the FIDE Studies Subcomittee.

Rozentalis, Eduardas (1963- )

Lithuanian grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2567.

Ruban, Vadim (1964- )

Russian grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2545.

Rubinstein, Akiba (1882-1961)

Chess master who claimed he studied chess six hours a day, 300 days a year. Another 60 days he spent playing in chess tournaments. The remaining five days he rested. He never ate in public and would not shake hands for fear of germs. He was so paranoid that if a stranger came to his door, he would exit out the window. He suffered from a nervous disorder known as anthrophobia (fear of people and society). In 1912 he won five consecutive strong tournaments in one year (Vilna, San Sebastian, Breslau, Pistyan, and Warsaw), a record which has never been surpassed. During World War I, Like Lasker, he invested all his money in German War bonds. He beat Capablanca, Alekhine, and Emanuel Lasker the first time he played them in tournament play. In 1911 at San Sebastian he complained of a fly which kept settling on his forehead and breaking his concentration. After he won the tournament, the tournament director, Jacques Mieses, took him to a leading psycho-neurologist at Munich. The doctor examined Rubinstein and said, "My friend, you are mad. But what does it matter? You are a chess master!" Rubinstein imagined noises in the night: knockings on the walls. Had not World War I intervened, Rubinstein would have played Lasker for the world championship title in 1914 or 1915. The contract had already been signed. He once burst in the room next door and tried to strangle Richard Reti, believing he was the source of these strange noises. After 1932, he never competed in chess tournaments again. He spent four years hiding in a sanatorium in Belgium during the Nazi occupation. He defeated Alekhine, Lasker, and Capablanca the first time he ever played them. He was the youngest of 12 children. He learned chess at the late age of 19.

Mieses – Rubinstein, Prague 1908
1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.c3 d5 4.e5 dxc3 5.Nf3 cxb2 6.Bxb2 Nh6 7.Nc3 Be6 8.Bd3 Be7 9.Qc2 Nc6 10.a3 Qd7 11.Bc1 Nf5 12.Qa4 O-O 13.Qf4 f6 14.g4 fxe5 15.Nxe5 Nxe5 16.Qxe5 Bf6 0-1

Rublevsky, Sergei (1974- )

Russian grandmaster. He won the 58th Russian Championship in 2005, winning $40,000. In 2004, he won the Aeroflot Open. He played for Russia in five chess Olympiads and won a gold medal four times.

Rubtsova, Olga (1909-1994)

Born on August 20, 1909 in Moscow. She became an International woman grandmaster in 1976. She was the first USSR Women’s champion when she won the event in 1931. She also won the event in 1937 and 1949. She took 2nd place in the 1950 Women’s World Championship, a point behind Ludmila Rudenko. She won the 4th Women’s World Championship in 1956. She lost the title in 1958 to Elizaveta Bykova. She was the first Women’s World Correspondence Champion in 1971 and took 2nd in 1977, losing on tie-break to Lora Jakovleva. She died on December 13, 1994. She is the only person to become World Champion in both over-the-board and correspondence chess.

Huguet – Rubtsova, Plovdiv 1959
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.c3 Qe7 5.O-O d6 6.a4 a6 7.Na3 Nf6 8.d3 Be6 9.Nc2 O-O 10.Ne3 Bxe3 11.Bxe6 Bxc1 12.Bxf7+ Rxf7 13.Rxc1 Nd7 14.h4 h6 15.g4 Raf8 0-1

Ruck, Robert (1977- )

Grandmaster from Hungary. His FIDE rating is 2546.

Rudenko, Ludmilla Vladmirovna (1904-1986)

International woman grandmaster (1976) fromLeningrad. First Soviet woman to capture the World Women’s Championship. She won the title in the 1949-1950 World Championship Tournament (+9-1=5). In 1928, she became women’s champion of Moscow. She was USSR Women’s champion in 1952. She lost the World Women’s Championship in 1953 to Elizaveta Bykova (+4-7=2). Her occupation was an economic planner.

Rudge, Mary (1842-1919)

Winner of the first Women’s International tournament, held at the Ladies’ Club in London in 1897. She was 55 and the oldest of the 20 players. She won the event with 18 wins and 1 draw (she won 60 pounds). She was the first woman member of the Bristol Chess Club, which did not allow women to be members of the club until she joined in 1872. In 1889, she became the first woman in the world to give simultaneous chess exhibitions. By the end if 1889, she was being hailed as the leading lady chess player in the world. In 1898, she played against world champion Emanuel Lasker in a simultaneous display in London. Lasker was unable to finish the game with her in the time available, and conceded defeat because he would be lost with best play.

Rueb, Alexander (1882-1959)

Dutch lawyer and diplomat who became the first President of FIDE (1924-1949). He owned one of the largest chess libraries in the world until destroyed by aerial bombs in 1945. He wrote several books on endgames.


In 1290 Lombard lawyers formulated a rule to govern chess play when players from different countries met. The rule stated: "The game of chess ought to observe the custom of the place in which it is played." Prior to 1853 the rules were to draw for color as well as the first move at the start of the game. Thereafter, the players had the same color pieces throughout the session. One could have the Black pieces and move first. Black was considered to be the lucky chess color. In 1853 George Walker suggested that the players who draw White should have the first move in order to compensate. The first international codification of rules occurred in 1929.


A Latin poem written by the monk Froumund vonn Tegernsee in 1030 is the first written reference of chess in German literature. It was the first Medieval epic of chivalry from 11th century Germany.

Russ, William Henry (1833-1866)

Leading American compiler of chess problems in the 19th century who wrote under the name W. R. Henry. He was the first person to collect all chess problems published in America and compiled a manuscript collection. He adopted an 11-year old girl and proposed to her in Brooklyn when she turned 21. When he rejected him, he shot her four times in the head. He left her for dead (she survived), then tried to commit suicide by jumping into the river to drown himself. Unfortunately, the tide was out and not deep enough. He climbed out of the river and shot himself twice in the head. He died 10 days later in a hospital, lacking the will to win. His chess book, published posthumously, was entitled American Chess Nuts, published in 1868.


Chess was first introduced in Russia in 820 A.D. Some scholars believe chess originated in Russia. Ivory pieces that may have been used as chess pieces were discovered in Southern Uzbekistan and dated to the 2nd Century A.D. . The first Russian championship took place in Moscow in 1899, won by Chigorin. Several players used pseudonyms because they did not want their employers to know they were spending their free time playing chess. The first All-Russian Chess Federation was formed in 1914 with 65 members

Ruth, William (1886-1975)

Chess master from Philadelphia. He took last place in the 1945 US Championship (+1-7=2). The opening 1.d4 Nf6 2.Ng5 is sometimes known as the Ruth Opening, but more commonly named the Trompowsky Opening.

Ruzele, Darius (1968- )

Grandmaster from Lithuania. His FIDE rating is 2531.

Rynd, Porterfield (1847-1917)

First Irish chess champion. He won the Irish championship in 1865 (16 out of 17) and 1892 to 1913. He was a barrister. He helped form the Irish Chess Association in 1885.

Rytov, Boris (1937- )

Winner of the Championship of the Baltics and Belarus in 1969. Estonian Champion in 1975.

Sadler, Matthew (1974- )

Grandmaster from England. He won the British championship in 1995. He retired from competitive chess in 1999. His FIDE rating is 2617.

Illescas – Sadler, Linares 1995
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e4 Nc6 4.Be3 Nf6 5.Nc3 e5 6.d5 na5 7.Nf3 Bd6 8.Qa4+ Bd7 9.Qxa5 a6 10.Nb1 Nxe4 11.Kd3 c3 0-1

Sadvakasov, Darmen (1979- )

Grandmaster from Kazakhstan. Winner of the 37th World Junior Championship, held in India in 1998. He has been rated as high as 2651, ranked 49th in the world in 2004.

Yulianti – Sadvakasov, Bali 2000
1.f4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.e4 e6 4.g3 d5 5.e5 Nh6 6.Bg2 Nf5 7.Nc3 Be7 8.O-O h5 9.d3 Qb6 10.Kh1 Bd7 11.Bd2 O-O-O 12.Re1 Kb8 13.Rb1 c4 14.dxc4 h4 15.cxd5 Nxg3+ 16.hxg3 hxg3+ 17.Bh3 Qf2 0-1

Saemisch, Friedrich (1896-1975)

International Grandmaster (1950) from Germany. Loser of more games of chess on time than any other master. In one tournament he lost all 13 games on time. He once spent 45 minutes before making his first move, got in time trouble and lost. In another event he lost a game on time in 13 moves. The time control was 45 minutes in 2 1/2 hours. He was imprisoned for awhile by the Nazis

Saemisch – Rathai, Berlin 1941
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 d4 4.Nf3 Nc6 5.Nbd2 Qe7 6.g3 Bg4 7.Bg2 O-O-O 8.O-O d3 9.exd3 Nxe5 10.Qa4 a6 11.Nxe5 Qxe5 12.c5 Rd4 13.Nc4 Qf6 14.Be3 Rxd3 15.Qe8+ (15...Rd8 16.Qe4) 1-0

Sagalchik, Gennady (1969- )

Grandmaster now living in the United States. His FIDE rating is 2472.

Sahovic, Dragutin (1940-2005)

Serbia/Montenegro grandmaster (1978). He was born in Kraljevo on August 8, 1940. He took 1st place at Lone Pine in 1977. He died on November 12, 2005, in Belgrade.

Saidy, Anthony (1937- )

International Master (1969). He competed in several U.S. championships. In 1961 he won the Canadian Open. In 1967 he won the American Open in Santa Monica. In 1992 he shared 1st place in the US Open. He is a medical doctor specializing in tuberculosis and was a doctor with the Jamaican Peace Corps. He sometimes wrote chess articles under the name Antonio Fortuna.

Huguet – Saidy, Las Palmas 1973
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Bg5 e6 7.Qd2 a6 8.O-O-O Bd7 9.f4 Be7 10.f5 Ne5 11.fxe6 fxe6 12.Nf3 Qc7 13.Be2 Rd8 14.Bxf6 Bxf6 15.Qxd6 Qa5 16.Rd5 exd5 17.Nxe5 Bg4 18.Qa3 Qxa3 19.bxa3 Bxe5 20.Bxg4 Bxc3 0-1

Saint-Amant, Pierre (1800-1872)

Leading French player after the death of Bourdonnais. He was secretary to the Governor of French Guiana but was dismissed after he protested abouth the slave trade. In 1823, he entered the wholesale wine trade and prospered from it. In 1841 he revised the chess magazine, Le Palamede, which ran until the end of 1847. In early 1843 he defeated Staunton in London in a match (3 wins, 1 draw, 2 losses), but lost the re-match at the end of the year in Paris (6 wins, 4 draws, 11 losses). He retired to Algeria in 1861. He died in 1872 after a fall from his carriage.

Schulten – Saint-Amant, Paris 1842
1.e4 c5 2.c3 e5 3.f4 d6 4.Nf3 exf4 5.d4 Nf6 6.Bd3 Be7 7.Bxf4 O-O 8.Nbd2 Nc6 9.O-O Bg4 10.e5 dxe5 11.dxe5 Nh5 12.Bxh7+ Kxh7 13.Ng5+ Bxg5 14.Qxg4 Nxf4 15.Ne4 Ne6 16.Qh5+ Kg8 17.Rad1 Qe7 18.Rd7 Qxd7 19.Nf6+ gxf6 20.Rxf6 Bxf6 0-1

Sajtar, Jaroslav (1921- )

Czech international master (1950), Honorary Grandmaster (1985), and FIDE judge. He was in the diplomatic service.

Sakaev, Konstantin (1974- )

Russian Grandmaster (1992). In 1990, he won the Russian Youth Championship. He won the World Youth Championship in 1990, 1991, and 1992. In 1999, he won the Russian Championship. His FIDE rating is 2669.

Sakaev – Kramnik, Russia 1989
1.d4 f5 2.c4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.f3 d6 5.e4 Bg7 6.e5 Nh5 7.g4 dxe5 8.gxh5 exd4 9.Nd5 e5 10.h4 h6 11.Qe2 O-O 12.Qg2 c6 13.Bxh6 Bxh6 14.Qxg6+ Bg7 15.h6 Rf7 16.Nh3 cxd5 17.Ng5 Re7 18.Rg1 Nc6 19.cxd5 Qa5+ 20.Kd1 Qxd5 21.hxg7 1-0

Salov, Valery (1964- )

Russian grandmaster (1986) from Leningrad.. He was the World Under-16 champion in 1980. He was the European Junior Champion in 1983-84. He tied for 1st in the 1987 USSR Championship, but lost the play-off to Beliavsky. He now lives in Madrid.

Saltaev, Mihail (1962- )

Grandmaster from Uzbekistan. His FIDE rating is 2498.

Saltsjobaden, Sweden 1948

First Interzonal tournament, organized by the Swedish Chess Federation and FIDE, and won by David Bronstein who survived an assassination attempt on his life in the last round. A Lithuanian had a grudge against the Soviet Union and attacked Bronstein with a knife. The U.S. was not represented. The two candidates, Isaac Kashdan and Arnold Denker, declined. The USCF raised $1,000 for Kashdan to play, but he felt that would not cover his expenses. Denker would have had to finance the entire journey himself. Seven players represented the USSR in the twenty man field and five of them finished in the top six places. First place was only $550. Saltsjobaden is a seaside resort near Stockholm. The tournament was held from July 15 to August 15, 1948.

Salvio, Alessandro (1570-1640)

Chess author from Naples, doctor, and best chess analyst of his time. He defeated Paolo Boi in 1598 (who died three days later) and Geronimo Cascio in 1606. He was unofficial world chess champion around 1600. In 1604 in Naples, he published the first comprehensive chess book, called Trattato dell’inventione et arte liberale del gioco degli scacci. It contained 31 chapters with chess openings. In 1634 he started a chess academy in Naples. In 1612 he authored a tragic poem about chess, La Scaccaide. It contained some historical information about Italian players. No copies are known to exist. In 1634 he wrote Il Puttino, altramente detto, il Cavaliere Errante del Salvio, Sopra il gioco de’ Scacchi con la sua Apologia contra il Carrera, an account of Leonardo da Cutri. The famous Lucena position (Rook and Pawn vs Rook) first appeared in Il Puttino in 1634.

Salwe, Georg (1862-1920)

Polish master from Warsaw. He learned chess at the age of 20. His first major tournament was Kiev 1903, when he was 42. He took 1st at the 1906 All-Russia Championship.

Samford Chess Fellowship

A fellowship worth over $32,000 to the most promising junior player in the U.S. Past winners have been Joel Benjamin (1987), Maxim Dlugy (1988), Patrick Wolff (1989), Alex Fishbein (1990), Ilya Gurevich (1991), Alex Sherzer (1992), Ben Finegold (1993), Gata Kamsky (1994), Josh Waitzkin (1995), Tal Shakad (1996), Boris Kreiman (1997), Dean Ippolito (1998), Greg Shahade (1999), Michael Mulyar (2000), Eugene Perelshteyn (2001), Varuzhan Akobian (2002), Dimitry Schneider (2003), Rusudan Goletiani (2004), and Kikaru Nakamura (2005). It is named after Frank P. Samford Jr, who was a very big chess enthusiast. he left funds in his will for young chess players to develop their skills. Frank P. Samford, Jr (1921-1986) was the great grandson of a Governor of Alabama, the grandson of an Alabama Court of Appeals judge, and the son of the founder of Liberty National Life Insurance Company (now Torchmark).

San Antonio 1972

First international tournament in the USA since the Piatigorsky Cup in 1966. It was won by Karpov, Petrosian, and Portisch., followed by Gligoric and Keres.

San Luis

City in Argentina that will host the 2005 World Chess Championship Tournament. The participants will be Kasimdzhanov, Anand, Topalov, Leko, Adams, Morozevichm Svidler, and Judith Polgar.

San Segundo Carrillo, Pablo (1970- )

Grandmaster from Spain. His FIDE rating is 2528.

Sanakoev, Gregory (1936- )

Correspondence Grandmaster (1984) from Russia. He was the 12th Correspondence Chess Champion of the World (1984-1990). He took 5th place in the 6th world correspondence championship finals and 4th in the 10th world correspondence championship finals.

Sandrin, Albert (1923-2004)

Winner of the 50th US Open in Omaha in 1949. He vision was damaged because, as a kid, he stared at the sun too much. In 1952 he enrolled in the Marshall School for the Blind. In 1968 he was totally blind and was the #1 player on the US Braille Chess team.

Sanguineti, Raul (1916- )

Argentinian international master (1957) and Honorary GM (1982). He won the championship of Argentina in 1956, 1957, 1962, 1965, 1969, 1973, and 1974.

Santasiere, Anthony (1904-1977)

American chess master. The opening 1.Nf3 c5 2.b4 is known as Santasiere’s Folly, but was played by Alekhine in 1923. He won the 46th US Open in 1945. He won the New York State championship (1928, 1930, 1946, 1956) and the Marshall Chess Club (he was 17 when he won in 1922) six times. He plated in four U.S. championships. He was school teacher in Manhattan’s public schools for 35 years, as well as an art and music critic. He wrote books on chess, poetry, and a children’s novel. He died at the age of 72.

Santasiere – R. Byrne, New York 1946
1.Nf3 g6 2.e4 Bg7 3.d4 d6 4.Bc4 Nd7 5.Bxf7+ Kf8 6.Ng5 Nb6 7.Qf3 Nf6 8.e5 dxe5 9.dxe5 Bg4 10.exf6 Bxf3 11.fxg7+ Kxg7 12.Ne6+ 1-0

Santo-Roman, Marc (1960- )

Grandmaster from France. His FIDE rating is 2395.

Sarapu, Ortwin (1924-1999)

New Zealand international master (1966). He was born in Estonia. In 1940, he won the Estonian Junior Championship. In 1945, he won the Copenhagen Championship. He moved to West Germany after World War II. In 1950, he emigrated to Australia. He won the Australian championship in 1957-59. He won the New Zealand championship 20 times.

Saren, Ilkka (1940- )

Finnish champion in 1971.


Winner of the First Microcomputer Chess Tournament, held in San Jose in 1978. There were 10 other microcomputers in the tournament. SARGON was a program written in Z-80 assembly language and programmed by Dan and Kathe Spracklen. SARGON won with a 5-0 score. SARGON became one of the most popular chess playing programs for home computers.

Sarratt, Jacob Henry (1772-1821)

Chess player and author. He was a London schoolmaster and the first professional to teach in England. He was the house professional at the Salopian coffee house in London who played for a guinea per game. Sarratt called himself the ‘Professor of Chess.’ One of his students was William Lewis. In 1803 he published Treatise on the Game of Chess. In 1813 he published the works of Damiano, Ruy Lopez, and Salvio. In 1817, he published the works of Gianutio and Gustavus Selenius. Sarratt persuaded chess players in England to accept a stalemate as a draw. In some areas, stalemate was a lost game for the stalemating player. He died destitute. After his death, Lewis published New Treatise on the Game of Chess in 1821.

Sarratt – NN, London 1818
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e3 b5 4.a4 Bd7 5.axb5 Bxb5 6.Nc3 Ba6 7.Qf3 c6 8.Rxa6 Nxa6 9.Qxc6+ Qd7 10.Qxa8+ Qd8 11.Qc6+ Qd7 12.Qxa6 1-0

Sasikiran, Krishnan (1981- )

Grandmaster from India. He is rated over 2640. In 2005, he tied for 1st place (with Jan Timman), at the Sigeman Chess Tournament in Denmark. In 2002, he became the first Indian play in over a decade to defeat Viswanathan Anand. In 2002, he won the Asian Championship.

Saunders, Elaine (1926- )

Won the British girls’ under 21 title at age 10. She won the British women’s championship in 1939 at the age of 13 (undefeated), a record until 2000 when Humpy Koneru won it at 13. She won again in 1940 and 1946. She married David Brine Pritchard.

Savchenko, Stanislav (1967- )

Ukrainian grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2506.

Savereide, Diane (1954- )

International Woman Master (1975) and six-time winner of the US Women’s Chess Championship. She won in 1975 and 1976. In 1977 and 1978 she shared the championship with Rachel Crotto. She won it again in 1981 and 1984. In 1982 she was ranked number 10 on the list of the world’s top women. She lost the title in 1986 to Inna Izrailov. She was the top woman player in the 1976 US Open. She works as a software developer in Los Angeles. She began playing chess at 17.

Savon, Vladimir (1940-2005)

Ukrainian Grandmaster (1973). He played in 10 USSR championships and won the 39th USSR Championship in 1971. He was not even an International Master when he won the USSR championship. He won it 1 ½ points ahead of Tal and Smyslov. He took 8th place in the 1973 Petropolis Interzonal tournament. He died at the age of 65.

Feldman – Savon, Kiev 1959
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.b3 Bg7 4.Bb2 O-O 5.g3 d6 6.d4 d5 7.Bg2 c5 8.cxd5 Nxd5 9.Ne5 Nb4 10.Na3 N8c6 11.e3 Nxe5 12.dxe5 Nd3+ 13.Ke2 Nxb2 14.Qxd8 Rxd8 15.f4 Bg4+ 0-1

Sax, Gyula (1951- )

Hungarian grandmaster (1974). He was European Junior champion in 1971-72. He won the Hungarian championship in 1976 and 1977.

Schandorff, Lars (1965- )

Grandmaster from Denmark. His FIDE rating is 2519.

Schaufelberger, Heinz (1947- )

Swiss champion in 1971 and 1972.

Schiffers, Emanuel (1850-1906)

Russian master. From 1870 to 1880, he was considered the Russian champion, until Chigorin defeated him. He finshed 2nd, behind Chigorin, in the first and second All-Russian tournaments in 1899 and 1900.

Schiller, Eric (1955- )

USCF National Master and FIDE international arbiter. Author of over 100 chess books, perhaps more than any other chess writer. He has a PhD (1991) in linguistics.

Schlechter, Carl (1874-1918)

Viennese player who was ranked in the top 5 in the world. The most quiet of all grandmasters. Known as the "Drawing Master" as he drew half of his 700 tournament and match games. In 1910, he drew a match with Emanuel Lasker. All he needed to do was draw his last game, but he lost it and the match. Some view this match as a world championship match. He may have starved to death in Budapest during the war-imposed famine in Central Europe, never mentioning to any of his acquaintances that he needed money or food. He was found in a room without any money, heat or food and died at age 44 of pneumonia.

Schlechter – H. Wolf, Berlin 1894
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Be7 5.Bxf6 Bxf6 6.Nf3 O-O 7.e5 Be7 8.Bd3 Bd7 9.h4 f6? 10.Ng5 fxg5 11.Bxh7+ Kxh7 12.hxg5+ Kg8 13.Rh8+! Kf7 14.Qh5+ g6 15.Qh7+ Ke8 16.Qxg6 mate 1-0

Schlosser, Philipp (1968- )

German grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2554.

Schlumberger, William (1800-1837)

Strongest player in America from 1826 to 1837. He supported himself by giving chess lessons at the Cafe de la Regence in Paris, earning 4 francs a day. He taught chess to Pierre Saint Amant. When Johann Maelzel brought his automaton, the Turk, to the U.S, he could find no strong player for it. He wrote to the Cafe de la Regence asking for a chess expert and Schlumberger accepted. He was he last operator of the Turk. He died of yellow fever while sailing to Cuba with Maelzel and the Turk. Maelzel died on the trip back from Cuba.

Scholar's Mate
1.e4 e5 2.Qh5 Nc6 3.Bc4 d6 4.Qxf7 mate. In France it is called the Shepherd's mate. It was first described as Scholar’s mate in a chess book by Barbier in 1640.

Schmid, Lothar (1928- )

German grandmaster (1959) and correspondence grandmaster (1959). He was the German Correspondence Champion in 1952. He has the largest private chess library in the world, with over 20,000 chess books. He has served as chief arbiter for Fischer-Spassky 1972, Karpov-Korchnoi 1978, Kasparov-Karpov 1986, and Fischer-Spassky 1992. His collection is housed in 7 rooms on the top 2 floors of his house in Bamberg, Germany. The ground floor is taken by his publishing business, Karl May-Verlag. He took 2nd in the World Correspondence Championship in 1955-1958.

L. Schmid – Sahlmann, Essen 1948
1.e4 c5 2.Ne2 Nc6 3.c4 Nf6 4.Nbc3 g6 5.d4 cxd4 6.Nxd4 d6 7.f3 Qb6 8.Be3 Qxb2 9.Na4 Qa3 10.Bc1 1-0

Schmidt, Wlodzimierz (1943- )

Polish grandmaster (1976). He is Poland’s first native born grandmaster. He won the Polish championship in 1971, 1974, 1975, 1981, and 1988.

Schmittdiel, Echkard (1960- )

German grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2417.

Schneider, Lars-ke (1955- )

Swedish International Master (1976). Swedish champion in 1979, 1982, and 1983.

Schneider, Attila (1955- )

Hungarian International Master (1984). Hungarian champion in 1982.

Schonberg, Harold (1915-2003)

Pulitzer Prize winner and chess journalist. He was senior music critic for the New York Times. He wrote The Grandmasters of Chess. He covered the Fischer-Spassky match in Reykjavik for the New York Times.

Schussler, Harry (1957- )

Swedish Grandmaster (1988). Swedish champion in 1976 and 1978.

Schwartzman, Gabriel (1976- )

Became one of the youngest grandmasters in the world. He played in his first chess tournament at the age of 4. He was a master at the age of 12. He was an International Master at 15. He became a Grandmaster at age 17. He was originally from Bucharest, Romania and moved to Florida. In 1988 he took 2nd in the world Under 12 championship. Judit Polgar took 1st place. He won the 1996 US Open at the age of 19 (youngest since Bobby Fischer) and was the winner of the Internet World Student Championship. He started the world’s first interactive chess school in 1996, the Internet Chess Academy.

Schwartzman – Asanov, Metz 1994
1.c4 g6 2.Nc3 Bg7 3.Nf3 d6 4.g3 Nc6 5.d4 e5 6.dxe5 Nxe5 7.Nxe5 Bxe5 8.Bg2 Ne7 9.O-O h5 10.h4 Nf5 11.e4 Ne7 12.Bg5 c6 13.Qd2 Bg4 14.f3 Be6 15.f4 Bg7 16.f5 f6 17.fxe6 fxg5 18.Rf7 Bf8 19.Qxg5 Qb6+ 20.Kh2 Qd4 21.Nb5 1-0

Scotch Game

An opening name derived from an 1824 correspondence game between the English in London and the Scots in Edinburgh, Scotland. However, it was the English who played the Scotch opening.

Scott, Roland (1888-1953)

British champion in 1920.

Scrivener, Robert (1881-1969)

In 1913, Schrivener placed 4th in the US Open. In 1920, he placed 5th in the US Open. He was President many times of the Western Chess Association. He won the state chess championships of Alabama, Louisiana, Florida, and Mississippi. In 1957, at the age of 76, he won the Southern Open. In 1961, at the age of 80, he won the Mississippi State Chess Championship. This may be the oldest state champion in the United States. He won the St. Louis District Chess Championship in 1936, 1937, and 1940. In 1963, the US Chess Federation recognized his achievements by awarding him the title of master emeritus. His nickname was “Uncle Bob.” He died at the age of 87. He was inducted in the Tennessee Chess Hall of Fame In 1990.


A player's attendant. The first seconds were for the Lasker-Tarrasch match in 1908. They were allowed to help in preparation of the openings. The first seconds that assisted during adjournments were in the Alekhine-Euwe championship match in 1935.

Seirawan, Yassar (1960- )

First American to beat a reigning world champion in the modern era. He defeated Karpov at the Phillips and Drew International in London in 1982. He was once featured in Cosmopolitan magazine as Bachelor of the Month in September 1983. He has since married to another chess player. He was born in Damascus, moved to England, then immigrated to the United States in 1967. He has won the U.S. Chess Championship 4 times (1981, 1986, 1989, 2000). He won the U.S. Junior championship in 1978 and 1979. He won the U.S. Open championship in 1985 and 1990. In 1979 he won the World Junior Championship in Skein, Norway. He became a grandmaster at age 19. He was the editor of Inside Chess. He now lives in Amsterdam.

Seirawan – Yermolinsky, Key West 1994
1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 e6 4.e3 f5 5.g4 fxg4 6.Qxg4 Nf6 7.Qg2 c5 8.Nf3 Nc6 9.Bd2 a6 10.O-O-O Qc7 11.dxc5 Bxc5 12.Rg1 O-O 13.Ng5 Kh8 14.Kb1 Ne5 15.Na4 Ba7 16.Bb4 Rg8 17.Qg3 (threatening 18.Qxe5 Qxe5 19.Nf7 mate) 1-0

Selenus, Gustavus (1579-1666)

Author of Das Schach-oder Konig-Spiel (Chess or King-play), the earliest detailed account of living chess and the earliest German chess book, in 1616. Gustavus Selenius was the pseudonym for August (Augustus) the Younger, the duke of Brunswick-Luneberg-Dannenberg. He also wrote nine books on cryptography. His use of chess notation in 64 numbers made his chess books too hard to study. Between 1590 and 1610, he had 70 sorcerers and witches burned. Duke Charles of Brunswick (Karl von Braunschweig), who played Paul Morphy in 1858, was a descendent of August the Younger.

Sergeant, Edward (1881-1961)

British master. He was a civil servant by profession. In 1907, he tied for 2nd in the British championship, behind Atkins.

Sergeant, Philip (1871-1952)

A professional writer on chess.

Sergeyev, Alexander (1897- )

Moscow champion in 1925. He participated in the USSR championship in 1924, 1925, and 1927.

Sermek, Drazen (1969- )

Grandmaster from Slovenia. His FIDE rating is 2532.

Serper, Grigory (1969- )

Grandmaster now living in the United States. His FIDE rating is 2546.

Sevastianov, Vitaly (1935- )

President of the USSR Chess Federation (1977-1986) and the first person to play chess in space during the Soyuz IX mission in June, 1970. He stayed in space for 18 days and used one of the days to play chess with the ground controllers (Gorbaty and Kamanin). The game was drawn after 35 moves. He was selected as a cosmonaut in 1967 and trained to be one of the first Soviet cosmonauts for a trip to the moon. In 1975 he flew on Soyuz 18 and stayed in space for 63 days. He helped design the Mir spacecraft. He invented the Soyuz-Apollo cocktail (25% vodka, 25% gin, 50% brandy). It was designed to put you in orbit. In 1985 he became and International Arbiter and was awarded honorary member for life in the World Chess Federation (FIDE). In 1986 he was replaced by Alexander Chikuaidze, a career diplomat.

Shabalov, Alexander (1967- )

Grandmaster now living in the USA. His FIDE rating is 2593.

Shahade, Greg (1978- )

Winner of the 1993 National Junior High School Co-Champion and 1996 National High School Co-Champion. In 1999 he was the recipient of the Samford Fellowship.

Shahade, Jennifer (1980- )

First female to win the US Junior Open (1998). In 2002 she won the US Women’s Chess Championship without playing a single game against another woman. She won the tournament by playing male masters and grandmasters.

Shahiludo, de

A Latin poem written by a Winchester monk in 1180. It is the first British reference to chess.

Shaked, Tal (1978- )

America’s youngest Grandmaster in 1997 and highest rated Junior (2500). He won the US Junior Championship and the 1997 World Junior Championship in Poland. He was a grandmaster at the age of 19. He won the Samford Chess Fellowship in 1996.


The Russian word for chess. It was first used by a Serbian nomocanon translated from a Greek source in 1262.

Shamkovich, Leonid (1923-2005)

Russian born Grandmaster (1965) who moved to Israel in 1974, then the United States in 1976 (the first Soviet émigré Grandmaster). He tied for 1st in the Moscow championship in 1961, but lost the play-off to Bronstein. He won the US Open in 1976 and 1977. In 1975, at the Los Angles airport security check, his suitcase was taken to go through the x-ray machine. Thinking that this was part of the check-in, he boarded the airplane to Cleveland for a chess tournament. It took four days to track down and recover his missing luggage. He won the New York State Championship in 1976. His highest rating was 2675, ranked #19 in the world.

Shamkovich – Shaposhnikov, Rostov on Don 1954
1.c4 e6 2.Nf3 d5 3.d4 Nf6 4.Nc3 Be7 5.Qc2 O-O 6.Bg5 Ne4 7.Bxe7 Qxe7 8.Rc1 Nxc3 9.Qxc3 c6 10.g3 Nd7 11.Bg2 dxc4 12.O-O b5 13.b3 cxb3 14.Qxc6 Rb8 15.axb3 Qb4 16.Qc7 Rb6 17.Ne5 Nxe5 18.dxe5 g6 19.Qxa7 Ra6 20.Qb8 1-0

Shannon, Claude (1916-2001)

English mathematician who was the first person to describe how a computer might be programmed to play chess, in 1948. In 1950 he wrote “Programming a Computer for Playing Chess,” which was published in Philosophical Magazine. He is considered the father of information theory.

Shaposhnikov, Evgeny (1981- )

International Master who, in 2003, was disqualified from the first European Internet championships qualifier because he supposedly used a computer program (Fritz). He has won the St. Petersburg championship several times.

Sharavdorj, Dashzeveg (1974- )

Grandmaster from Mongolia. He tied for 1st place at the 2005 National Open.

Sharavdorj – Bin Hashim, Manila 2001
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 c6 4.Nc3 e6 5.e3 Nbd7 6.Bd3 dxc4 7.Bxc4 Be7 8.O-O O-O 9.e4 b5 10.Bd3 b4 11.Na4 c5 12.e5 Nd5 13.dxc5 Qa5 14.c6 Nc5 15.Nxc5 Qxc5 16.Nd4 a5 17.Re1 Qb6 18.Re4 Ba6 19.Bc2 Rfe8 20.Qg4 Bf8 21.Bg5 Bb5 22.Qh3 Ne7 23.Nxb5 Qxb5 24.Rxb4 1-0

Shaw, George Bernard (1856-1950)

British playwright who was openly hostile to chess. He and his wife, Charlotte, did play chess. In his play, The Admirable Bashville (1901), he wrote: “The world’s a chessboard, and we are mortal pawns in the fist of fate.” His other quote is: “Chess is a foolish expedient for making idle people believe they are doing something very clever, when they are only wasting their time.”

Shaw, Peter (1920-2003)

Past President of the British Chess Federation, from 1982 to 1985. He was also a past President of the Surrey County Chess Association.

Shcekachev, Andrei (1972- )

Russian grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2570.

Sher, Miron (1952- )

Grandmaster now living in the USA. His FIDE rating is 2420.

Sherbakov, Rusian (1969- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2526.

Sherwin, James (1933- )

International Master (1958) and Executive Vice President of GAF Corporation who was the American Chess Foundation (ACF) President from 1979 to 1990. He took 5th place in the 1953 World Junior Championship. He finished in 3rd place twice in US chess championships (1957-58 and 1958-59). He was involved in some Wall Street scandals in 1988 and was replaced as President of the ACF by Fan Adams, a retired Mobil Corporation executive. Sherwin was tried 3 times for stock manipulation charges. In 1986 he tried to lift the price of Union Carbide stock shortly before selling a large block of shares. Government prosecutors finally dropped the charges after the appeals court overturned the verdict in 1991. His arrest made the front page of the New York Times and all the financial publications. Sherwin lost his job and moved to Switzerland and England. The United States Attorney who prosecuted Sherwin was Rudi Giuliani. They spent over a million dollars in prosecuting the case. GAF and Sherwin spent over a million dollars defending the case.

Sherzer, Alex (1971- )

Grandmaster from the USA. His FIDE rating is 2504.

Shinkman, William Anthony (1847-1933)

Known as the Wizard of Grand Rapids. He composed chess problems for over 60 years and next to Sam Loyd, was America’s greatest chess composer. He published over 3,500 problems in his lifetime.

Shipley, Walter (1860-1942)

US chess patron. He was the referee for the Marshall-Capablanca and the Lasker-Capablanca matches. He was the key organizer of Cambridge Springs 1904 and New York 1924. He was a prominent Philadelpha lawyer. He edited a chess column in the Philadelphia : Inquirer for over 30 years.

Shipov, Sergei (1966- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2582.

Ships and chess

In 1902 the first chess match between players on different ships at sea was played by passengers on the American liner Philadelphia and the Cunard liner Campania 70 miles away. The moves were broadcast by wireless operators aboard the ships. The match was not concluded since the radio was required for navigational use. In 1962 the first USCF rated event ever held shipboard was won by John Mauer (USS Intrepid Open).

Shirov, Alexei (1972- )

Grandmaster (1992) from Latvia, who later moved to Spain, then to Lithuania. In 1988, he won the World Championship for Under 16. In 1990, he took 2nd in the World Championship, under 20. He is married to Lituanian GM Victoria Cmilyte.

Shneider, Alexandr (1962- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2529.

Short, Nigel (1965- )

The youngest player ever to qualify to play in the British Championship, age 11. He won the British speed championship at age 13 and tied for first in the British Championship at 14. He became an International Master at 14 after placing 2nd in the World Junior Championship and a Grandmaster at 19. In 1993 he played Garry Kasparov for the world championship title, but lost. He won the British Championship in 1998.

Short – Bischoff, Dortmund 1983
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 d6 3.Nc3 Nbd7 4.g3 e5 5.Nf3 g6 6.Bg2 Bg7 7.O-O O-O 8.b3 Re8 9.dxe5 dxe5 10.Bb2 c6 11.Ng5 e4 12.Qc2 e3 13.f4 Nc5 14.Rad1 Qa5 15.f5 Ncd7 16.fxg6 Qxg5 17.gxf7+ Kxf7 18.Ne4 Rxe4 19.Qxe4 Nf8 20.Rd8 Ne6 21.Qxh7 Nxd8 22.Bxf6 1-0

Showalter, Jackson Whipps (1860-1935)

In 1890 he won the United States Chess Association’s 3rd Annual Congress Championship tournament in St. Louis. Shortly after this tournament in 1890, he lost a match to Max Judd by a score of 7-3. In 1892 he defeated Judd by the score of 7-4. In 1894 he defeated Albert Hodges by the score of 8-6. Later in 1894 Showalter lost to Hodges in a return match with a score of 5-3. In 1895 Showalter defeated Simon Lipschuetz, Emil Kemeny, John Barry, and Adolf Albin in matches. In 1897 Showalter lost to Harry Pillsbury by the score of 9.5-11.5. In 1898, Showalter lost a return match with Pillsbury by the score of 4-8. In 1909 Showalter lost to Frank Marshall by a score of 3.5-18.5. He was an accomplished baseball pitcher and is considered the inventor of the curve ball. His nickname was the Kentucky Lion.

Showalter – Burille, New York 1889
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Ba5 6.O-O Nf6 7.d4 O-O 8.Nxe5 Nxe4 9.Qh5 Nxe5 10.dxe5 c6 11.Nd2 Nxd2 12.Bxd2 Bb6 13.Bg5 Qe8 14.Rae1 Bd8 15.Bf6 d5 16.Qg5 1-0


Chess program written by Stefan Meyer-Kahlen. It has won the world computer chess championship four times and is the number one ranked computer on the computer ranking charts.

Shulman, Yuri (1975- )

Grandmaster now living in the USA. His FIDE rating is 2550.


Siblings who play chess and have been masters include Georgi, Valery, and Vychacheslav Agzamov; Alexander and Alexei Alekhine; Leslie and Robin Ault; Jacobo and Julio Bolbochan; Donald and Robert Byrne; Richard and Thomas Costigan; Dan and Pia Cramling; Bogden and Miroslaw Grabarczyk; Barbara and Isabel Hund; Hans and Paul Johner; Lee and Nancy Jones (Australian Junior champions); Avrid, Karl, and Yevgeny Kubbel; Berthold and Emanuel Lasker; Sam and Tom Loyd; Alisa and Mirjana Maric; Olga and Vera Menchik; Eugene and John Meyer; Edward and Paul Morphy; Saeed-Ahmed and Nasser Saeed; Amalie, Louis, and Wilfried Paulsen; Judit, Sofia, and Susan Polgar; Ferenc and Lajos Portisch; Abram and Ilya Rabinovich; Albert and Angelo Sandrin; Greg and Jennifer Shahade; Meenakshi and Vijayalakshmi Subbaraman; Endre and Lajos Steiner; Lian Ann Tan, Lian Quee Tan, and Lian Seng Tan (Singapore champions); Karel and Frantisek Treybal; Jay and Paul Whitehead; and Eugene and Serge Znosko-Borovsky.

Sicilian Defense

The opening 1.e4 c5. At the end of the 18th century, this opening was known as the Mortemar. The opening was called the Sicilian Game in the earlier Greco manuscript.

Sigurjonsson, Gudmundur (1947- )

Icelandic grandmaster. He was Iceland’s second grandmaster after Olafsson. He won the Icelandic championship in 1965, 1968, and 1972.

Silans, Chaude de (1919- )

First lady to play in the Men's Olympiad (Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia) in 1950. She played first board reserve for France, winning one game, drawing one game, and losing four games. She once said that women could not play chess because they had to keep quiet for five hours.

Silman, Jeremy (1954- )

International Master. Author of over 30 chess books, including How to Reassess Your Chess and The Amateur Mind. In 2001, he was the chess consultant for “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” and created the moves for the chess battle. He has won the American Open, the National Open, and the US Open (1981).

Tim Taylor-Silman, Lone Pine 1976
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.c4 Nf6 6.Nc3 d6 7.Nc2 Bg7 8.Be2 Nd7 9.h4 Nc5 10.h5 f5 11.hxg6 hxg6 12.Rxh8+ Bxh8 13.exf5 Bxf5 14.Ne3 Qd7 15.Nxf5 Qxf5 16.Be3 Nb4 17.Qd2 Nc2+ 18.Kd1 Nxa1 19.g4 Bxc3 20.Qxc3 Qb1+ 21.Qc1 Qxa2 0-1

Simagin, Vladimir (1919-1968)

Russian gradmaster (1962). He won the Moscow championship in 1947 and 1959. He died while participating in the Kislovodsk 1968 tournament.

Simic, Radoslav (1948- )

Grandmaster from Serbia/Montenegor. His FIDE rating is 2412.

Simpson’s Divan

Early chess club and café-restaurant at 100 The Strand in London. In 1828 the first floor was used as a home for chess, opened by Samuel Reiss. It was a place to play chess, drink coffee, smoke cigars, and read newspapers. In 1848 Reiss was joined by John Simpson. They enlarged the building and called in Simpson’s Divan and Tavern. The building was torn down in 1900 when they widened the Strand. It was re-built in 1904, but the majority of chess players were driven out.

Simultaneous play

Karl Podzielny played 575 games simultaneously in 1978. In 30 1/2 hours he won 533 , drew 27, and lost 15. Vlastimil Hort played 550 opponents, 201 simultaneously, and lost only 10 games in 1977. The best record for simultaneous play was achieved by Capablanca who played 103 opponents, drew 1 game and won all the rest in Cleveland in 1922. George Koltanowski played 56 consecutive (not simultaneous) blindfold games and won 50, drew 6 in San Francisco in 1960. Janos Flesch played 52 strong players blindfold, taking 12 hours. He won 31, drew 18 and lost 3 games. The first satellite simultaneous exhibition was between Kasparov against players in London and New York in 1984. In 1988 he played 10 opponents in Australia, Belgium, Canada, England, Italy, Japan, Senegal, Switzerland, USA, and USSR, winning 8, drawing 1, and losing 1. The best simultaneous record is Jude Acers winning all 114 games at a simultaneous exhibition at the 1966 Louisiana State Fair. The worst performance in a simultaneous exhibition is a New Jersey player who invited 180 opponents to play him in 1977. Only 20 showed up and 18 won. Of the two losses, one was to the exhibiter's mother. In 1910 the Austrian master, Josef Krejcik, gave a simultaneous display at Linz on 25 boards and lost every single game. In 1966 at the Havana Olympiad, 380 of Cuba's strongest players played 18 opponents each, a total of 6840 individual boards. In 1984 Kasparov conducted the first satellite simultaneous exhibition, playing chessplayers in London and New York. In 1988 Kasparov played 10 opponents in Australia, Belgium, Canada, England, Italy, Japan, Senegal, Switzerland, USA, and USSR, winning 8, drawing 1, and losing 1. In June, 1997, 1,194 players competed against 40 top players, including Women’s World Champion Susan Polgar, in New York City. In 2002, Havana had a total of 11,320 chess players in a simultaneous exhibition. In June, 2005, Pachuca, Mexico had a total of 12,388 chess competitors in a simultaneous exhibition. In 2005, Susan Polgar played 326 simultaneous games and 1,131 consecutive games, both a new world record.

Simutowe, Amon (1982- )

International master (1998) from Zambia. He has 2 GM norms. He is the strongest player south of the African Sahara and the 3rd highest rated from Africa. He won the championship of Zambia at the age of 14. He finished 2nd in the 2000 World Junior Championships. His FIDE rating is 2435.

Sisniega, Marcel (1959- )

Grandmaster from Mexico. His FIDE rating is 2435.

Skembris, Spyridon (1958- )

Grandmaster from Greece. His FIDE rating is 2436.

Skipworth, Arthur Bolland (1830-1898)

Born in 1830 and became a reverend. He was secretary of the British Counties’ Chess Assocation and editor of the : Chess Players’ Chronicle. In September 1865, he won the first British Counties’ Chess Association, held in Redcar. In 1869, he won the 5th British Counties Chess Association Congress at York, England. In 1871, he won the 3rd British Chess Association Challenge Cub (7th Counties Chess Association) at Malvern. In 1873, he won the 9th British Counties Chess Association Congress at Bristol. In 1880, he tied for 1st at the 15th British Counties Chess Association Congress, held in Boston, England. In 1883, he took last place at the 1883 London International with 3 out of 26. The event was won by Zuckertort. In 1884, he took 2nd in the 19th British Counties Chess Association Congress at Bath, England. In 1885, he lost a match to Henry Bird (+2-5=0). In 1886, he participated in the Nottingham International, but withdrew after he lost the first two games. In 1891, he tied for 1st in the 24th British Counties Chess Association Congress, held at Oxford, but lost the play-off to Joseph Blake. In 1892, he lost all 8 games to take last place in the 25th British Counties Chess Association Congress, held in Brighton, England. In 1893, he took 2nd in the 26th British Counties Chess Assoication Congress at Woodhall Spa, England. Skipworth had the habit of falling ill early in a tournament , especially when things were not going his way. He died in 1898. When he died, the British Counties’ Chess Association ceased to exist.

Slater, James (1929- )

English financier and chess patron.

Sliwa, Bogdan (1922- )

Polish International Master (1953). He won the Polish championship 6 times (1946, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1960).

Slobodjan, Roman (1975- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2529.

Sloth, Jorn (1944- )

European Junior Champion in 1964 and the 8th World Correspondence Champion in 1980 (on tiebreak over Vladimir Zagorovsky). He is Denmark’s first world champion. In 1978 he became a grandmaster in correspondence chess.

Slowest Move

In 1980 Francisco Trois took 2 hours and 20 minutes to make one move against Luis Santos in Vigo, Spain. That’s the slowest single move on record. He only had two possible moves to consider!

Smagin, Sergey (1958- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2565.

Smejkal, Jan (1946- )

Grandmaster from the Czech Republic. His FIDE rating is 2504.

Smirin, Ilia (1968- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2652.

Smith, Ken (1930-1999)

Texas master who founded Chess Digest in 1962. In 1954 he won the British Open and the British Blitz Championship while stationed in England as an Air Force enlisted man. He was not given a prize because he was not British. In 1983 while playing in the National Open in Las Vegas, Ken Smith won $140,000 at a poker tournament. He once took 2nd place in the World Championship of Poker. He had won the Texas Championship 8 times, the Southwest Championship 7 times, the Southern Open 4 times, the Mexican Championship once, and the British Open once. He had written nine books and 49 articles on the Smith-Morra Gambit, 1.e4 c5 2.d4 cxd4 3.c3 (including Smith-Morra Accepted and Smith Morra Declined by Ken Smith and Bill Wall).

Smyslov, Vassily (1921- )

Soviet Grandmaster (1950). He was world champion in 1957-58. He took 1st in the 1938 Moscow championship. He became a candidate for the world championship by taking 2nd place at the 1982 Las Palmas interzonal at the age of 61, the oldest candidate ever. In his candidates match with Huebner in Velden, Austria, the match was tied 7-7. To break the tie, both players agreed to use a roulette wheel to select the winner. Huebner's color was black and Smyslov's color was red. The wheel was spun at it came up 0. The second spin saw the ball land in "Red 3" and Smyslov won. He won the first World Seniors Championship in 1991 at the age of 70. He won the Staunton memorial at Groningen at the age of 75. He played in 19 USSR chess championships. Smyslov's father once beat Alekhine in a chess tournament in 1912. Smyslov has been the oldest player to play in a Soviet championship. He was 67 when he played in the 55th USSR Championship in Moscow in 1988.

Smyslov – Prins, Helsinki 1952
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 d5 4.Bg2 c5 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.O-O Be7 8.e4 Nf6 9.e5 Nd7 10.dxc5 Bxc5 11.Bf4 h6 12.Nc3 g5 13.Be3 Bxe3 14.fxe3 Ndxe5 15.Nxe5 Qxd1 16.Bxc6+ 1-0

Sneaky Pete

First computer to play in a U.S. Open (Columbus, Ohio in 1977).

Socko, Bartosz (1978- )

Polish grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2615.

Socko, Monika (1978- )

Polish woman grandmaster. Her FIDE rating is 2465.

Soffer, Ram (1965- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2453.

Sokolov, Andrei (1963- )

Russian grandmaster (1984) born inside the Arctic Circle. He was joint Moscow Champion in 1981. He was World Junior Champion in 1982. He won the 51st USSR championship in 1984. He was a Candidate in 1985, defeating Vaganian and Yusupov, but lost to Karpov in 1986. At one time he was ranked #3 in the world. He has since moved to France.

Sokolov, Ivan (1968- )

Bosnian grandmaster (1987). Yugoslav champion in 1988.

Vescovi – I. Sokolov, Malme 1995
1.e4 e5 2.Bb5 c6 3.Ba4 Nf6 4.Qe2 Bc5 5.Nf3 d5 6.exd5 O-O 7.Nxe5 Re8 8.c3 Bxf2+ 9.Kf1 Bg4 10.Qxf2 Rxe5 11.Kg1 Qe7 0-1

Sokolsky, Alexei (1908-1970)

Soviet chess player who was awarded the title USSR Master of Sport in 1938. He popularized the opening 1.b4, which is sometimes called the Sokolsky opening. He played in four USSR chess championships and six USSR Correspondence Chess Championships. He was twice champion of the Ukraine.

Solak, Dragan (1980- )

Grandmaster from Serbia and Montenegor. His FIDE rating is 2557.

Solozhenkin, Evgeniy (1966- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2488.

Soltis, Andrew (1947- )

One of the most prolific chess authors in history. He is the author of dozens of popular chess books. In 1964, he won the New York City Junior championship. In 1969, he won the US Intercollegiae championship. He won the Marshall Chess Club Championship several times (1967, 1969-71, and 1974). He became a Grandmaster in 1980. He is a journalist for the New York Post. He learned chess at the age of 9.

Sonnenborn-Berger (SB) System

Tie-breaking method. One adds up the total scores of the player one beats and half the scores of the players with who one draws and compares the total with the total of the player with who one ties. The SB system was invented by Oscar Gelbfuhs in 1873 and used in the 1873 Vienna tournament. It derives its name from English player William Sonnenborn and Austrian endgame expert Johann Berger, who advocated this tie-break system.

Sorin, Ariel (1967- )

Grandmaster from Argentina. His FIDE rating is 2496.

Sorokin, Maxim (1968- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2567.

Sosonko, Gennadi (1943- )

Dutch grandmaster (1976). He was born is Siberia, but moved to the Netherlands in 1972. He won the Dutch championship in 1973.

Soultanbeieff, Victor (1895-1972)

Russian player who moved to Belgium after the Russian Revolution. He was champion of the Belgium Chess Federation in 1934, 1943, 1957, and 1961.

South Africa

The Cape Town Chess Club in South Africa was founded in 1885. Competitive chess began in 1891. The first South African championship was held in 1892 and won by E. Roberts and A. Rivett. South Africa was banned from FIDE from 1977 to 1992 because of its apartheid practices. Players participating in South African events have also been banned from FIDE events. Players banned have included Miguel Quinteros, Ludek Pachman, Karl Robatsch, and H. Kestler. Individual sports players from South Africa were always allowed to compete around the world in any sporting event except chess. Chess was the only activity in which even chess players from South Africa were not allowed to compete outside their own country.

Soviet Championship

The first Soviet Championship was in 1920, won by Alekhine. It was called the Russian Chess Olympiad at the time. It was held in Moscow. The chief complaint at the first Soviet Championship was the food. The food consisted of Red Army rations and herring soup. The next Soviet Championship was in 1923, won by Peter Roamnovsky. The last Soviet Championship was in 1991, won by Artashes Minasian. Botvinnik and Tal have won the Soviet Championship more than anyone else, 6 times.

Soviet Defectors and Emigres

Chess masters who left the Soviet Union include Anna Ahsarumova (Gulko’s wife), Elena Akhmilovskaya, Lev Alburt, Irene Aronoff, Leonid Bass, Roman Dzindzihasvili, Boris Gulko, Dmitry Gurevich, Igor Ivanov, Oleg Kaminsky, Gata Kamsky, Boris Kogan, Alla Kushnir, Viktor Korchnoi, Sergey Kudrin, Anatoly Lein, Vladimir Liberzon, John Litvinchuk, Georgi Orlov, Radashkovich, Leonid Shamkovich, Gennadi Sosonko, Boris Spassky, Jacob Yuchtman, Vitaly Zaltsman, and Mikhail Zlotnikov.

Sozin, Benjamin (1896-1956)

Soviet master.

Spangenberg, Hugo (1975- )

Grandmaster from Argentina. His FIDE rating is 2487.

Spasov, Vasil (1971- )

Bulgarian chess player who won the 1989 World Junior Chess Championship. His highest rating has been 2633, ranked #72 in the world. His FIDE rating is 2551.

Spassky, Boris (1937- )

Soviet Grandmaster (1955) now living in France. He was born in Leningrad. He was World Junior Champion in 1955 and World Champion from 1969 to 1972, in which he lost to Bobby Fischer. He was the first Soviet to compete in a Swiss System tournament, the Canadian Open in 1971. His sister Irena has been the USSR women's champion at checkers several times. His ending against Bronstein in the 1960 USSR Championship was used in the opening sequence of the James Bond film "From Russia With Love". In 1992 he lost a rematch with Fischer in Sveti Stefan and Belgrade with 5 wins, 15 draws, and 10 losses.

Hunerkopf – Spassky, France 1984
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.e5 d5 6.Bb5 Ne4 7.Nxd4 Bc5 8.Be3 Bxd4 9.Qxd4 O-O 10.Bxc6 bxc6 11.f3 c5 12.Qa4 Bd7 13.Qa3 Qh4+ 14.g3 Nxg3 15.Bf2 Qh6 0-1

Spassov, Liuben (1943- )

Bulgarian grandmaster (1976).

Speelman, Jonathan (1956- )

British champion in 1978, 1985, and 1986. He became a grandmaster in 1980. He played in the 1988-90 World Championship Candidates matches and lost to Jan Timman.

Harandi – Speelman, London 1989
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Bg5 e6 7.Qd2 Be7 8.O-O-O O-O 9.Ndb5 Qa5 10.Bxf6 Bxf6 11.Nxd6 Rd8 12.Nc4 Rxd2 (13.Nxa5 Rxd1+ and 14...Nxa5) 0-1

Spielmann, Rudolf (1883-1942)

Viennese professional chess player. His nickname was "The Last Knight of the King's Gambit" because he played this opening so much. In a tournament a spectator carelessly flicked an ash on Spielmann's pants, which caught on fire. He was so absorbed with the game that he failed to notice he was on fire and had to be rescued by onlookers. He was a true professional chess player who had no work outside chess. He played in over 120 tournaments and over 50 matches in his career.

Reti – Spielmann, Dortmund 1928
1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 Nf6 3.d3 Nc6 4.Nc3 Bb4 5.Nge2 d5 6.exd5 Nxd5 7.Bxd5 Qxd5 8.O-O Qa5 9.a3 O-O 10.Be3 Bxc3 11.Nxc3 Nd4 12.b4 Qa6 13.f4 Qc6 14.Qd2 Qxc3! (15.Qxc3 Ne2+ and 16...Nxc3) 0-1

Spiridonov, Nikolai (1938- )

Bulgarian grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2381.

Spraggett, Kevin (1954- )

Canadian grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2592.


GM Mohamad Al-Modiahki of Qatar is married to former world champion Zhu Chen. GM Keith Arkell was once married to WIM Susan Walker. She later married GM Bogdon Lalic.Grandmaster Juan Bellon of Spain is married to Grandmaster Pia Cramling of Sweden. International Master John Donaldson was once married to Woman Grandmaster Elena Akhmilovskaya. They eloped during the 1988 Chess Olympiad in Greece. GM Boris Gulko is married to Woman GM Ann Akhsharumova . Jana Malypetrova, one of the top female British players, married Bill Hartston, then Tony Miles, and is now married to Robert Bellin. Istvan Bilek is married to one of the top female Hungarian chess players. Both were champions of their country at the same time. Grandmaster Peter Biyiasas is married to International Master Ruth Haring. Grandmaster David Bronstein married Grandmaster Isaac Boleslavksy’s daughter. Grandmaster Gilberto Hernandez is married to WGM Claudia Amura. Grandmaster Alexander Ivanov is married to International Master Esther Epstein. Boris Ivkov is married to a former Miss Argentina. Grandmaster Yona Kosashvili of Israel is married to Woman Grandmaster Sofia Polgar. GM Bogdan Lalic is married to WIM Susan Walker Arkell. Reginald Price Mitchell, former British Amateur championship, was married to Edith Michell, who won the British Women’s Championship several times. Miguel Quinteros is married to a former top model from the Philippines. Grandmaster Alexey Shirov is married to Lithuanian GM Victoria Cmilyte.

Stadler, Petra

In 1988, Petra Stadler, who lived in Darmstadt, Germany, wrote a letter to Bobby Fischer. A friendship developed and she went to Los Angeles to visit him. Two years later, he traveled to Germany to visit her. In 1992, she married Russian Grandmaster Rustem Dautov. In 1995, she wrote, Bobby Fischer – wie er wirklich ist – Ein Jaher mit den Schachgenie (Bobby Fischer – As He Really Is). In her book, she says that during the Gulf War in 1991, Fischer tried to telegram Saddam Hussein, congratulating him for invading Kuwait. However, the German Post Office refused to send the message.

Stahlberg, Gideon (1908-1967)

Leading Swedish chess player from 1929 (when he won the championship of the northern countries) to 1967. In 1941 Swedish Grandmaster (1950) Gideon Stahlberg played 400 games on 20 boards (each loser being replaced by a new player) at Buenos Aires. After 36 hours his score was 364 wins, 14 draws, and 22 losses. He played on 13 Swedish Olympic teams. He was the judge or arbiter of five world championships. He was fluent in six languages. At bridge, he was of international master class. He was about to play the first round in the 1967 Leningrad International Tournament (won by Korchnoi) when he became ill and died of an unspecified liver ailment a few days later. He was 59.

Stahlberg – Dahlin, Gothenborg 1927
1.f4 d5 2.e3 c5 3.Nf3 e6 4.b3 Bd6 5.Bb2 f6 6.Bd3 Nh6 7.Ng5 g6 8.Nxh7 Rxh7 9.Bxg6+ Rf7 10.Qh5 Bf8 11.g4 Qe7 12.g5 Nf5 13.Bxf6 Qd7 14.Be5 Nc6 15.Bxf7+ Qxf7 16.g6 Qg8 17.g7+ Kd8 18.Qh8 1-0

Stangl, Markus (1969- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2469.


The rule regarding stalemate first appeared in Europe in A. Saul's Famous Game of Chesse-Play, published in 1614. In England, the player who gave stalemate lost the game. In Italy and France stalemate counted as a draw. In Spain and Portugal it counted as an inferior win (a half-win). Some countries didn't even allow it. Finally, in 1808, the London Chess Club laws gave stalemate as a draw and it has remained so ever since. The shortest stalemate is this pre-arranged game: 1.c4 h5 2.h4 a5 3.Qa4 Ra6 4.Qxa5 Rah6 5.Qxc7 f6 6.Qxd7+ Kf7 7.Qxb7 Qd3 8.Qxb8 Qh7 9.Qxc8 Kg6 10.Qe6 stalemate. The game was played in the Swedish Junior Championship in 1995.

Stamma, Philip (1705-1770?)

Chess player and author from Aleppo (Haleb), Syria. He was an interpreter of Oriental languages to the British government. In 1737 he published Essai sur le Jeu d-Echecs. The book was a collection of 100 endgames. It was the first chess book to use algebraic notation (a=QR, b=QN, c=QB, etc). In 1745 he published The Noble Game of Chess. It was a collection of 100 endgames with 74 openings added to it. In London, he was one of the strongest chess players at Slaughter’s Coffeehouse. In 1747 he lost to Philidor in a match played at Slaughters.

Stamps, Chess

Over 300 postage stamps from more than 60 countries have been issued with a chess theme. The U.S. has yet to do so. The first stamp (in a set of five issued) with a chess theme was issued in 1947 in Bulgaria commemorating the Balkan Games. Chess was one of the sports. The other four stamps showed bicycle racing, basketball, soccer, and the flags of the 4 participating nations. The next stamp with a chess theme was issued by the USSR in 1948 to commemorate the World Chess Championship match-tournament. The first chess stamp which portrayed a chess master was issued by Cuba in 1951 when a portrait of Capablanca appeared on several of their stamps. France issued its first chess stamp in 1966 to commemorate the International Chess Festival in Le Havre (won by Larsen).

Stanley, Charles Henry (1819-1901)

Born in Brigton, England in September, 1819. In 1839, he defeated Howard Staunton (+3-2=1), but Stanton was giving odds of a pawn and move. Stanley emigrated to New York in 1842 and worked at the British Consulate. He was regarded as the best chess player in New York from 1842 to 1857. In 1844, he defeated John Schulten in two matches in New York. He was considered to be America's first chess champion until he lost a match with Paul Morphy in 1857. He started America's first chess column in the Spirit of the Times on March 1, 1845, which contained the first chess problem published in America. The chess column ran until October, 1848. In 1845, he, again, defeated John Schulten in a match in New York. In December, 1845, he defeated Eugene Rousseau at the New Orleans Chess Club (Sazerac Coffee House) in the first unofficial US Championship (15 wins, 8 losses, 8 draws). This was the first organized chess event in the United States. The stakes for the event was $1,000. Rousseau’s second was Eugene Morphy, Paul Morphy’s uncle. Paul Morphy attended the match at the age of 8 and became interested in chess. In 1846 Stanley defeated Charles Vezan in New York and George Hammond in Chicago. In October 1846, he started the American Chess Magazine: a periodical Organ of Communication for American Chess-Players, which folded in September 1847. In 1846 he published the first book in America on a chess match, : 31 Games of Chess. From 1848 to 1856, he edited a chess column in The Albion. In February, 1850 he defeated John Turner of Louisville, Kentucky in Washington, DC and drew a match against Janos Loewenthal (+3-3=0) in New York. In 1852 he suggested the holding of an international chess tournament at the Great Exhibition in New York in 1853, but nothing came of it. In 1852, he drew a match with Pierre St. Amant in New York (+4-4=0). In 1855 he organized the first World Chess Problem tournament. In 1857 he was knocked out in the first round of the 1st American Chess Congress by Theodore Lichtenhein, winning 2 games and losing 3 games. In December, 1857, Stanley’s daughter, Pauline, was born. She was named after Paul Morphy. In 1859, he published Morphy’s Match Games and The Chess Player’s Instructor. In 1860 he returned to England and took 2nd in the 3rd British Chess Association Congress in Cambridge, England, losing to Ignatz Kolisch. From 1860 to 1862, he edited a chess column in the Manchester: Express and Guardian. In 1861, he won a tournament in Leeds, England. In 1868, he lost a match to George Mackenzie in New York. He was an alcoholic who spent his last 20 years in institutions on Ward’s Island and in the Bronx.

Star Trek

Kirk and Spock have played chess (3-D chess) three times on STAR TREK. Kirk won every game. When Spock played 3-D chess against the computer and won, he was convinced that the ship’s computers had been tampered with.

Statham, Louis (1907-1983)

Physicist, inventor, philanthropist and American chess patron. He owned the Playboy mansion in Los Angeles before selling it to Hugh Hefner and moving to Lone Pine. His Lone Pine tournaments (1971-1980) became one of the premier events in the US. His interests also included yacht racing, opera singing, and ham radio. At 60 he took up correspondence chess, playing over 40 games at once. He had a doctorate in mathematics and pioneered the use of shock waves in oil exploration. He also contributed to the development of the artificial heart. He built the $300,000 Lone Pine Town Hall for his chess tournaments and donated it to the city.

Staunton chessmen

The only type of chess set allowed in FIDE events. In the 1978 World Championship match in Baguio, none of the chess sets shown to Karpov and Korchnoi just before the match were of the Staunton pattern. Someone had to drive to Manila to find a Staunton chess set, which arrived just 15 minutes before the clocks were due to be started. The Staunton knight pattern was modeled after the Greek horse of the Eglin Marbles in the British Museum. The name of the standard pattern of chessmen in England before the Staunton pattern was the St. George design. The pattern was designed by Nathaniel Cook in 1835. The original Staunton chess pattern was first made by John Jacques and Son of London in 1849.

Staunton, Howard (1810-1874)

World’s leading chess player in the 1840s. He is reputed to have been the illegitimate some of Frederick Howard, fifth Earl of Carlisle. He organized the world's first international tournament, held in London in 1851. He founded the Chess Player's Chronicle, the first chess magazine in the English language in 1840. He edited this magazine until 1854. He was a Shakespearean scholar and wrote a 517-page book on the history of English public schools. He wrote a chess column for the Illustrated London News and produced over 1,400 weekly reports on chess. He wrote the Chess-Player’s Handbook in 1847. From 1847 to 1935 it was republished 21 times. He died of a heart attack, sitting in his library chair.

Cochrane – Staunton, London 1842
1.e4 c5 2.Bc4 e6 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.e5 Nge7 5.Nc3 Ng6 6.Qe2 Nf4 7.Qe4 g5 8.g3 d5 9.exd6 f5 (10.Qe2 Ng2+ wins the Queen) 0-1

Stean, Michael (1953- )

English grandmaster. In 1974, he tied for 1st in the British championship.

Stefanova, Antoaneta (1979- )

Bulgarian grandmaster (2003). Current women’s world champion (10th women’s world champion). She won the title in 2004 in a 64-player knockout tournament held in Elista, Kalmykia.

Luks – Stefanova, European Youth Chess Championship 1992
1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qa5 4.d4 Nf6 5.Bd3 Nc6 6.Ne2 Bg4 7.f3 Bh5 8.Bd2 a6 9.O-O O-O-O 10.a3 Qb6 11.Na4 Qa7 12.Be3 e5 13.Bf2 exd4 14.c3 b5 15.Nxd4 Nxd4 16.Bxd4 c5 17.Bf2 Bg6 0-1

Stefansson, Hannes (1972- )

Grandmaster from Israel. His FIDE rating is 2579.

Stein, Leonid (1934-1973)

Soviet Grandmaster (1962) from the Ukraine and three-time Soviet champion (1963, 1965, 1966). In 1958 he became a master at the late age of 24. He won the Ukrainian Championship in 1960. In 1961 he took 3rd place in the USSR Championship and qualified for the 1962 Staockholm Interzonal. There he won a playoff match but was still excluded from the Candidates’ Tournament because of limitation on the number of players from the USSR. In 1967 he was, again, involved in a three-an playoff, He would have made the Candidates’ Tournament there had he accepted Hort’s offer of a draw. Stein refused and lost the game and his chance to play in the Candidates’ Tournament. Stein (pronounced “Shtane”) was heading with the Soviet team for the European Team Championship in Bath in 1973 when he was found dead of a heart attack (flagrante delicto) in the Rossiya Hotel in Moscow at the age of 38. He was also due to play in the Brazil Interzonal. He learned chess at the late age of 13.

Stein – Portisch, Stockholm 1962
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 5.Bd3 Nf6 6.O-O Qc7 7.Nd2 Nc6 8.Nxc6 bxc6 9.f4 Bc5+ 10.Kh1 d6 11.Nf3 e5 12.fxe5 dxe5 13.Nh4 O-O 14.Nf5 Be6 15.Qe2 a5 16.Bc4 Kh8 17.Bg5 Nd7 18.Rad1 Nb6 19.Nxg7 Bxc4 20.Bf6 Be7 21.Qf3 1-0

Steiner, Herman (1905-1955)

New York champion in 1929, US Open champion in 1942 and 1946, and US Champion in 1948. He was born in Hungary and emigrated to the United States in 1921. He died on November 25, 1955 while playing in the California State Championship. He had just played a 62 move draw against William Addison and died two hours later. The State Tournament was cancelled by the wish of the other players as a gesture of sorrow. Steiner edited the chess column of the Los Angeles Times from 1945 until his death in 1955.

Steiner, Lajos (1903-1975)

Hungarian champion in 1936 and International Master (1950). He emigrated to Australia in 1939 and won the Australian championship many times.

Steinitz, William (Wilhelm) (1836-1900)

Official world champion from 1866 to 1894. Steinitz took 6th place in the London 1851 tournament. After the tournament, he challenged the 5th place finisher to a match. Steinitz won. It would be another 31 years and 25 matches before anyone could defeat him. He won prize money in every tournament he ever played in except his last tournament, London 1899. The first recognized world champion who won the first official world championship match against Zuckertort in 1886. Steinitz started badly, being 1-4 down, but finally won with a 12.5 – 7.5 score. His daughter sold programs and photographs to spectators during the New York phase of the world championship match to earn a few extra dollars for the family. They couldn't afford a winter coat for her as she stood shivering in the vestibule in the cold January weather. He held the world chess championship for 27 years (from age 31 to age 58). After he lost his title, he showed signs of mental illness. He challenged God to a match and occasionally beat Him at chess with pawn odds. He believed he could move chess pieces through mental telepathy. He imagined he could draw energy from the earth and emit electrical currents. He was once held against his will in an insane asylum in Moscow in 1897. He had the delusion that he was phoning somebody in New York. He was sent to the asylum protesting violently. However, he enjoyed the food and played chess with other inmates. He stayed a week. He died in the East River mental asylum on New York's Ward Island, penniless, in 1900. When he died he left a wife and two small children destitute. He once spit on Blackburne and Blackburne hit him. From 1873 to 1882, Steinitz won 25 games in a row. He won 16 straight games at Vienna in 1873, 7 straight games from Blackburne in a match in London in 1876, then the first 2 games at Vienna in 1882 before drawing to Mackenzie in round 3. He moved to the United States in 1883 and became a naturalized citizen in 1884. In 1896, Steinitz had to convince the Russian government that he was not telegraphing State secrets when he was telegraphing chess moves back to New York while he played in a chess tournament in St. Petersburg. Irving Chernev, in a 1935 issue of Chess Review, states that Steinitz was arrested as a spy for telegraphing chess moves. Steinitz claimed he was the 13th of 13 children, which may not be true. He is buried at Evergreens Cemetery in Brooklyn, bethel slope plot, lot 5896, grave number 5893. His grave says that he was born May 14, 1837, but other sources say he was born May 17, 1836.

Steinitz – Unknown, New York 1890
1.e4 e5 2.c3 d6 3.d4 Bd7 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.Qb3 Qe7 6.Qxb7 Bc6 7.Qc8+ Qd8 8.Bxf7+ Ke7 9.Qe6 mate 1-0

Steinitz – Zukertort Match, 1886

The first official world championship match. They played an earlier match in 1872, won by Steinitz with 7 wins, 1 loss, and 4 draws. The 1886 event was the first in which most everyone acknowledged that the winner would be the “official” world champion. The winner would be the one who first won 10 games, draws not counting. The winner would get $2,000. Steinitz had his daughter Flora sell photographs of him to spectators for 50 cents apiece. Fewer than 50 people paid the 50-cent admission for the first game, played at the Manhattan Chess Club in New York on January 11, 1886. The time control was 30 moves in two hours. Zukertort lost the first game, then won the next four games. After two weeks off, the match moved to the St. Louis Chess, Checker and Whist Club (Harmonie Club). There were 50 spectators at the first match in St. Louis. Steinitz evened the score with 3 wins and 1 draw. In late February, the match moved to New Orleans for the last 11 games. In New Orleans, Steinitz won 6 games, lost one game, and drew 4 games. The final score was Steinitz winning 10 games, Zukertort winning 5 games, and 5 games drawn. Steinitz became the first official world champion on March 29, 1886. The match was the first time a large demonstration board was used to replay the moves to the spectators. Moves were cabled to Europe, where most Europeans were supporting Zukertort. Zukertort returned to England in bad health, and died two years later at the age of 46.


Vera Menchik, world woman's champion, married Rufus Henry Streatfeild Stevenson (1878-1943) and became Mrs. Stevenson. His first wife, Agnes Lawson, was four-time British Ladies’ Champion. On the way to play in the Women’s World Championship in 1935 , Mrs. Agnes Stevenson left the aircraft to complete a passport check, then returned to the aircraft from the front and ran into the propeller and was killed. Sonja Graf, U.S. woman's champion, married and became Mrs. Stevenson.

Stevic, Hrvoje (1980- )

Grandmaster from Croatia. His FIDE rating is 2528.

Stocek, Jiri (1977- )

Grandmaster from the Czech Republic. His FIDE rating is 2592.

Stohl, Igor (1964- )

Slovak grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2528.

Stolen car

A chess set was instrumental in a man retrieving his stolen car. In 1990 Bogdan Szetela noticed a car drive by that looked like his that had been stolen 11 days earlier. But this car had a taxi light on top and "Crescent Cab Co." painted on the side. Spotting a police officer, he told the cop that the cab was his stolen car. Police weren't convinced until he told them that he left a chess set in the trunk before it was stolen. The police popped the trunk and found the chess set. In the 1940s the tournament director of the US Championship had his car stolen during the event after he left his car keys in the car. The car was recovered a day later.

Stoltz, Gosta (1904-1963)

Swedish grandmaster. He worked as a car mechanic, but eventually became a full time chess professional,

Stolzenberg, Leon (1895-1974)

Winner of the US Open in 1926 and 1928. He won the Michigan State Championship 13 times. He won the US Open Postal Chess Championship (Golden Knights) three times.

Strauss, David (1946- )

First International Master to lose to a computer. In 1986 an experimental Fidelity machine defeated Strauss at the 1986 U.S. Open in Somerset, New Jersey. He was won the American Open 7 times (Walter Browne has won it 8 times).

Strazdins, Arkadijs

Chess expert won the New Britain, Connecticut chess club championship for 23 years in a row, from 1952 to 1975. He has also been President of the chess club for over 25 years. He has won the club championship 30 times, from 1952 to 1994.

Streisand, Barbra (1942- )

Fellow student of Bobby Fischer at Erasmus High School in Brooklyn (Flatbush) who used to swap MAD comics with Fischer. In adolescence, she had a crush on Bobby Fischer, who was already an internationally ranked and famous chess player. Bobby Fischer later dropped out of school and did not like Barbra.


The first chess strike occurred at the 1st All-Russian Chess Olympiad held in Moscow, 1920. The competitors stopped playing halfway through the event and refused to play unless they were given more rations and prize money. Their demands were finally met.

Strikovic, Aleksa (1961- )

Grandmaster from Serbia/Montenegro. His FIDE rating is 2498.


Village in the Harz Mountains, near Halberstadt in eastern Germany. Legend has it that in 1011 A.D., Henry II of Germany decreed that the Wendish Count of Gungelin be delivered to the Bishop of Stroebeck, to be kept in solitary confinement. The captive spent his long hours playing chess by himself, using a chalked-out board on the dungeon floor and chessmen carved from wood. He won his freedom by teaching his guards how to play chess and the game was passed on to their friends and relatives. During World War I, the city printed a bill showing Bismarck as the world chess master. Every year the town of 2,000 has a chess festival with parades, banners, and a living chess game.

Sturgis, George (1891-1944)

First President of the USCF, elected in 1939. He died while in office after returning from his honeymoon.

Sturua, Zurab (1959- )

Grandmaster from Georgia. His FIDE rating is 2511.

Suba, Mihai (1947- )

Romanian Grandmaster (1978) who defected to the West during an international tournament in London in 1988.

Suba – Sax, Hastings 1983
1.c4 c5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nb4 6.Bc4 Nd3+ 7.Ke2 Nf4+ 8.Kf1 Ne6 9.Ne5 Qd6 10.f4 Nc6 11.Qa4 Ned8 12.d4 cxd4 13.Nb5 Qb8 14.Nxd4 f6 15.Ndxc6 bxc6 16.Bf7+ 1-0


Author of the Sanskrit romance Vasavadatta, which contains the first written reference to chess.

Suetin, Alexei (1926-2001)

Russian Grandmaster (1965) and author. He played in 10 USSR championships, placing 4th in 1963 and 1965. He won the World Senior Championship in 1996. He died of a heart attack after returning home from the Russian Seniors Championship.

Zilber – Suetin, Leningrad 1957
1.c4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.e4 d6 4.f4 c5 5.dxc5 Qa5+ 6.Nc3 Bxc3+ 7.bxc3 Nf6 8.cxd6 Nxe4 9.Qd4 O-O 10.dxe7 Re8 11.Qe5 Nc5 12.Be3 Nc6 13.Qxc5 Qxc3+ 14.Kf2 Qxa1 15.Nf3 Nxe7 16.Be2 Qxh1 17.Qe5 Bh3 0-1


Chess players that have committed suicide include Curt von Bardeleben, Karen Grigorian, Georgy Ilivitsky, George Mackenzie, Johannes Minckwitz, Lembat Oll, Rudolf Swiderski, Istvan Szechenyi, Siegbert Tarrasch’s second son, Allan Turing, Alvis Vitolinsh, Frederick Yates, and Stefan Zweig. Chess players that tried to commit suicide include Alexander Alekhine, Harry Pillsbury, William Henry Russ.


Last writer on the Muslim game of chess. In 1579 he wrote "The fragrance of the Rose: on the Superiority of Chess over Nard (backgammon)."

Sulskis, Sarunas (1972- )

Grandmaster from Lithuania. His FIDE rating is 2535.

Sultan Khan, Mir (1905-1966)

Winner of the All-Indian championship and in five years he was the winner of the Championship of the British Empire three times and played on top board for England in three Olympiads. He was born in Mittha (Pinjab). He was illiterate and had to learn the rules of chess in Europe, which were different than Eastern chess (pawns could only move one square at a time, for example). He couldn't speak English and had to have an attendant write down his score. He was a servant in the household of Colonel Umar Hayat Khan Tiwano, an army officer in charge of the horses for King George V. He defeated Capablanca, Nimzovich, Rubinstein and other top players. He returned to India with his master, living the rest of his life as a farmer. He died of tuberculosis in Pakistan. In 1933 the U.S. chess team from the Olympiad was invited to the home of Sultan Khan's master in London. Sultan Khan was required to wait on everyone as a servant the entire evening. Sultan Khan was invited to play at Moscow 1936, but was too poor to attend.

Sunnucks, Patricia Anne (1927- )

International Woman Master. British Women’s champion in 1957, 1958, and 1964. She was an officer in the British Army.

Sunye Neto, Jaime (1957- )

Grandmaster from Brazil. His FIDE rating is 2530.

Suradiradja, Herman (1947- )

Grandmaster from Indonesia. His FIDE rating is 2247.

Sutovsky, Emil (1977- )

Israeli Grandmaster and 1996 World Junior Chess Champion. He was born in Baku but immigrated to Israel in 1991. He is rated around 2675.

Suttles, Duncan (1945- )

Canadian Grandmaster who became Canada's second Grandmaster in 1973 and first correspondence GM in 1982. He was born in San Francisco and moved to Vancouver, British Columbia in 1951. He was Canadian Champion in 1969. He tied for 1st at the US Open in 1973. He retired from chess and became involved in stocks and computer programming.

Garcia – Suttles, Nice 1974
1.e4 g6 2.d4 d6 3.Nf3 Bg7 4.Be2 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.O-O b5 7.e5 Nfd7 8.Qd3 Nb6 9.Bf4 Nc6 10.Qe4 Na5 11.Bd3 b4 12.Nd1 Bd7 13.Qe2 O-O 14.Ng5 Nc6 15.Qe4 Qc8 16.e6 Nxd4 17.exf7 Rxf7 18.Qe3 Nd5 0-1

Sutton, Willie (1901-1980)

Famous bank robber. When he was arrested by the FBI in 1952, he had in his possession was How to Think Ahead in Chess by Horowitz. When asked why he robbed banks, he said, “Because that’s where the money is.”

Sveshnikov, Evgeny (1950- )

Latvian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2507.

Svidler, Peter (1976- )

Grandmaster (1994) from Russia. In 2001, he reached the semi-finals of the FIDE world chess championship. He won the Russian Championship in 1994, 1995, 1997, and 2003. In 2004, he won the World Chess960 (random chess) chess championship.

Swiderski, Rudolf (1878-1909)

German master who committed suicide in 1909 at the age of 31. He took poison, then shot himself in Leipzig. In 1904 he tied for 1st place with Frank Marshall at the Rice Gambit tournament in Monte Carlo. He also tied for 1st place at Coburg, 1904, with Schlechter and von Bardeleben. Marshall described him as the weirdest chess player he ever met. Swiderski was the first to play the Maroczy Bind. And he played it against Maroczy. Maroczy then started playing it with good results, so the opening is named after him.

Swiderski – Schwan, Amsterdam 1899
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O Nxe4 6.d4 b5 7.Nxe5 Nf6 8.Bb3 Nxe5 9.dxe5 c5 10.exf6 c4 11.Re1+ 1-0

Swiss System

Pairing system invented by Dr. J. Muller of Brugg, Switzerland, and first used in a chess tournament at Zurich in 1895. George Koltanowski introduced the Swiss System in the United States. The first use of the Swiss system in the United States was the Texas Championship in 1942. The first national event to use the Swiss system was the 1945 U.S. Intercollegiate Championship followed by the 1947 U.S. Open in Corpus Christi. Since 1947 every U.S. Open has been conducted under the Swiss System. The first Swiss System Olympiad was Buenos Aires in 1978.

Szabo, Laszlo (1917-1998)

Hungarian Grandmaster (1950) and former Candidate for the World Chess Championship. He was born in Budapest, Hungary on March 19, 1917. Szabo was a National Master by the time he was 17. He won the Hungarian championship eight times (1935, 1937, 1946, 1950, 1952, 1954, 1959, 1967), and tied for first, but lost the play-off on two other occasions. In 1938-39, he won at Hastings. Before World War II, he worked in the foreign exchange department of a Budapest bank. During World War II, he was in a Hungarian Forced Labor unit where he was captured by the Russian army. He was a prisoner of war until after the end of World War II. After the war, he was editor of the Hungarian national chess magazine. Szabo was the leading Hungarian chess player from 1945 to 1960, when Portisch became Hungary’s leading player. In 1945, he took 2nd place in a tournament in Kecskemet and won 10 kilograms of lard. In 1946, he tied for 4th, with Najdorf, at Groningen. In 1947-48, he won at Hastings. In 1948, he won an international tournament in Budapest, ahead of Gligoric, Foltys, Pachman, and Tartakower. In 1949-50, he won at Hastings. He became an International Arbiter in 1954. He played on 11 Hungarian Chess Olympiad teams from 1935 to 1968. He participated in three Interzonals (1948, 1952, 1955), taking 2nd in 1948. He participated in three Candidates’ tournaments (1950, 1953, 1956), finishing joint third in 1956. In 1979, he retired from active chess play. In 1981, he wrote 100 ,000 Moves in 50 Years. In 1986, he wrote, : My Best Games. He died on August 8, 1998. (Thanks to Gabor Szabo, son of Laszlo Szabo, for some of this information).

Zakar – Szabo, Hungary 1933
1.e4 c5 2.c3 d5 3.e5 Nc6 4.d4 cxd4 5.cxd4 Qb6 6.Ne2 Bf5 7.Nbc3 Nb4 8.f3 Bc2 9.Qd2 Nd3+ 0-1

Szechenyi, Count Istvan (1791-1860)

Hungarian military leader, reformer, and writer who helped form the first ministry in Hungary. As a rich landowner, he helped establish the Hungarian (Magyar) Academy of Sciences in 1825. During the Hungarian Civil War of 1848-49, Szechenyi suffered a nervous breakdown and withdrew to a private hospital in Vienna. It is said that he recovered from his mental illness by playing chess in the hospital 12 hours a day. He wrote reform articles under the alias name Ignotus, He was harassed by the Viennese police and threatened with prosecution for sedition which drove him to suicide. He shot himself in 1860. He is known as the greatest Hungarian.

Szekely, Peter (1955-2003)

Hungarian grandmaster.

Szen, Joseph (1800-1857)

Hungarian master born in Pesth in 1800. He learned chess from his uncle. He was an archivist for the city of Pesth. He was given the nickname of the Hungarian Philidor. In 1836, Szen beat La Bourdonnais with 13 wins and 12 losses, no draws in Paris. La Bourdonnais gave odds of pawn and two moves. In 1839, he founded the Budapest Chess Club. In Berlin in 1839, Szen lost a match to Mayet with 2 wins, 3 losses, and 1 draw. Between 1842 and 1846, he headed a team of correspondence players that beat a Paris team with 2 wons and no losses. The Hungarian team introduced the Hungarian Defense, 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Be7. In the 1851 London International tournament, Szen defeated W. Newham with two wins in the first round. In the 2nd round, he and Adolf Anderssen agreed that the winner of the match between the two, if he eventually won first place, give 1/3 of his winnings to the loser. Anderssen beat Szen in the second round with 4 wins and 2 losses. In the 3rd round, Szen defeated Horwitz with 4 wins. Anderssen took first place and paid Szen 1/3 of his winnings. In the 4th round, Szen defeated Kennedy with 4 wins and 1 draw. Szen took 5th place (behind Anderssen, Wyvill, Williams and Staunton). In London in 1853, he lost a match with Daniel Harrwitz with 1 win, 3 losses, and 1 draw. He died in Hungary on January 13, 1857.

Taimanov, Mark (1926- )

Soviet Grandmaster (1952). Bought a point from Matulovic for $400 at the Palma de Mallorca Interzonal in 1970. When he lost to Fischer 6-0 in Vancouver, British Columbia, he returned to the USSR in disgrace. Normally grandmasters are not searched when crossing the border to the Soviet Union, but Taimanov was asked to open his luggage for examination. They found one of Solzhenitsyn’s banned books which Taimanov brought from Canada. He was stripped of his title 'Honored Master of Sport' and deprived of his monthly earnings for holding the grandmaster title. Both were returned to him when Fischer also beat Larsen 6-0. In 1993 he won the World Veterans’ Championship. In 1957, Taimanov said he would give up chess if Tal could win the USSR chess championship twice in a row. Tal did win in twice in a row, in 1957 and 1958, but Taimanov continued to play chess. Taimanov played more games than any other in the Soviet championships. He played 436 games from 1948 to 1976.

Stjerbakov – Taimanov, Leningrad 1954
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Bg5 e6 7.Qd3 a6 8.O-O-O Bd7 9.f4 h6 10.Bh4 g5 11.fxg5 Ng4 12.Qg3 hxg5 13.Nf3 gxh4 14.Qxg4 e5 0-1

Takacs, Sandor (1893-1932)

Hungarian master. He tied for 1st at Hastings in 1928/29.

Tal, Mikhail (1936-1992)

Grandmaster (1957) without being an International Master first. Tal was not an IM when he won the 24th USSR championship in Moscow in 1957. FIDE made an exception to the regulations and awarded him the Grandmaster title without having been an IM first. He was the 8th World chess champion in 1960-61. At a tournament in Poland in 1974, Tal was playing White against Adamski with both players in time trouble. Adamski's flag fell but Tal lost a piece and resigned. At that moment, Tal's wife said, "Black has not yet made 40 moves." A referee intervened and awarded the win to Tal since the flag falling happened before Tal resigned. Adamski appealed but his protest was rejected. Tal won the tournament. Tal's parents were cousins. In 1966 Tal was hit in the head with a bottle in a bar during the 1966 Olympiad in Havana and beaten up. He had been flirting with a woman in the bar and her jealous boyfriend got in a fight with Tal. He missed the first five rounds of the Olympics because of his injuries. He won the World Blitz Championship in 1988. In 1972-73 Tal played 86 games without a loss in international competition, winning 47 and drawing 39. In 1973-74, he played 93 games without a loss in international competition. He died of kidney failure in Moscow at the age of 55.

Tal – Vaganian, Dubna 1973
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nd2 Nc6 4.Ngf3 Nf6 5.e5 Nd7 6.Nb3 f6 7.Bb5 fxe5 8.dxe5 Nc5 9.Ng5 Bd7 10.Bxc6 bxc6 11.Qh5+ g6 12.Qf3 1-0

Talbot, Wiliam Henry Fox (1800-1877)

One of the greatest figures of the 19th century. He was a mathematician, physicist, classicist, philologist, transcriber of cuneiform texts, and chess player. In 1840, he invented the positive/negative process in film and is known as The Father of Modern Photography. He may have ben the first person to take a picture of chess players playing chess. Talbot made photographic experiments before Louis Daguerre (1787-1851) exhibited his pictures taken by the sun. Talbot made a daguerreotype (no negative as the image is exposed directly onto a mirror-polished surface of silver) of two chess players playing chess in England in the early 1840s. Talbot took photographs of Antoine Claudet (1797-1867), one of the first commercial photographers, playing chess with another player (available on eBay for $5,400).

Tamerlane (1336-1405)

The Mongol ruler and conqueror of the 14th century. He considered hunting and chess as the two pastimes worthy of a warrior. He named his son Shahrukh (chess rook).

Tarjan, James (1952- )

American Grandmaster who got his title in 1976. In 1966, he won the California Junior championship at the age of 14. It was the first GM title for the U.S. in 12 years. From 1974 to 1982 he represented the United States in 5 chess Olympiads. He won the American Open in 1973. He gave up chess to become a librarian in California.

Tarrasch, Siegbert (1862-1934)

German player who was one of the top 4 players in the world for 20 years. He had the lamest excuse in history for losing a world championship match. After losing to Lasker, he blamed his loss on the influence of sea-air. The match began at Düsseldorf, 100 miles from the coast. In 1918 he won a chess match in which the prize was a kilogram of butter. Tarrasch was a medical doctor specializing in hypnosis. Tarrasch lost two sons in the early days of World War I.

Tarrasch – Schroeder, Nuremberg 1890
1.e4 e5 2.f4 d6 3.d3 f5 4.Nc3 fxe4 5.dxe4 a6 6.fxe5 dxe5 7.Nf3 Bb4 8.Bg5 Qd6 9.Rc1 Qg6 10.Qd8+ Kf7 11.Bc4+ Be6 12.Nxe5 mate 1-0

Tartakower, Saviely (1887-1956)

Grandmaster from France (1950) who played for Poland in six consecutive Olympiads although he never lived there nor could speak the language (he could speak Russian, German, French, and English, and knew Latin and Greek). He once lost five games in a row and was asked why. He replied, "I had a toothache during the first game. In the second game I had a headache. In the third game it was an attack of rheumatism. In the fourth game, I wasn't feeling well. And in the fifth game? Well, must one have to win every game?" He received a Doctor of Law degree in 1909. During World War I he was a Lieutenant in the Austrian army and was shot in the stomach. During World War II he changed his name and was a Lieutenant (Lt. Georges Cartier) in the Free French Army, serving under de Gaulle. In 1929 he gave the first simultaneous chess exhibition on an airplane.

Perlis – Tartakower, Ostende 1907
1.e4 c5 2.c3 d5 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.d4 cxd4 5.cxd4 Nc6 6.Nf3 Bg4 7.Be2 e6 8.Nc3 Qa5 9.O-O Nf6 10.Ne5 Bxe2 11.Nxc6 Qxc3 0-1

Tatai, Stefano (1938- )

Italian International Master (1966). Winner of the Italian championship 9 times (1962, 1965, 1967, 1970, 1971, 1974, 1977, 1979, and 1983).

Tate, Emory (1958- )

5-time Armed Forces Champion while serving in the US Air Force. He is a FIDE master.

Tattersall, Creassey (1877-1957)

English chess composer and compiler of the first major anthology of endgames, A Thousand End-Games, in 1910.

Taubenhaus, Jean (1850-1919)

Born in Warsaw, but spent most of his life in Paris. At the London tournament of 1886, he placed third, behind Blackburne and Burn. In 1889 he operated the Mephisto automaton during its visit to Paris. In 1910 he wrote : Traite du Jeu d’Echecs.

Taubenhaus – Locock, Manchester 1890
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.f4 d5 4.fxe5 Nxe4 5.Qf3 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Be7 7.d4 O-O 8.Bd3 f6 9.Qh5 g6 10.Bxg6 hxg6 11.Qxg6+ Kh8 12.Qh5+ Kg8 13.Bh6 Qe8 14.Qf3 Rf7 15.Qh5 fxe5 16.Qg6+ Kh8 17.Bg7+ Kg8 18.Bf6+ 1-0

Taulbut, Shaun (1958- )

English International Master (1977). He won the European Junior Championship in 1977-78.

Teichmann, Richard (1868-1925)

German player and one of the top players in the world at the beginning of the 20th century. He was blind in one eye and wore an eye patch when playing in chess tournaments. He is sometimes known as “Richard the Fifth” because he took 5th place in at least 10 major tournaments. He is often quoted as saying “Chess is 99% tactics.” He was a language teacher.

Teichmann – NN, Berlin 1914
1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qd8 4.Nf3 Bg4 5.Bc4 e6 6.h3 Bxf3 7.Qxf3 c6 8.d3 Qf6 9.Qg3 Nh6 10.Bg5 Qg6 11.Nb5 cxb5?? 12.Qxb8+! Rxb8 13.Bxb5 mate 1-0

Tel Aviv 1964

Site of the 16th Olympiad, which was the first ever held in Asia, and the first time players from all five continents were able to take part in a world gathering.


The first telegraph match was played between Washington, D.C. and Baltimore in 1844, linked by the first American telegraph. In 1845 Staunton and Hugh Kennedy, playing from Gosport, Portsmouth Harbor, played two telegraph games against Evans, Perigal, Tucket, and Walker in London. The first international telegraph chess game was played in 1862 between Hugh Kennedy and Serafino Dubois. During the London international tournament, a telegraphic match between London and Paris had been planned. Due to disagreements with the French government, the telegraphic match did not take place. Thus, the organizing committee of the London tournament arranged a telegraphic match between the St. James Hall Chess Club and the London Chess Club.


The first telephone chess game was played in 1878 by two players in Derbyshire, England. The first telephone chess match was between the chess clubs of Cardiff and Swansea in 1884. The first tournament contested by telephone was that between London and Liverpool in 1891.


The first time a tournament game was played by teletype was on Aug 25, 1965 when Bobby Fischer played in the Capablanca Memorial tournament. He played his games by teletype from New York to his opponents in Havana, Cuba.

Temirbaev, Serik

Grandmaster from Kazakhstan. His FIDE rating is 2490.


Chess masters who also play or have played tennis include Elena Akhmilovskaya, Viswanathan Anand, Calvin Blocker, Walter Browne, Robert Byrne, Jose Capablanca, Bobby Fischer, Vlastimil Hort, Anatoly Karpov, Lubomir Kavalek, Paul Keres, Iivo Nei, Lajos Portisch, Yasser Seirawan, Boris Spassky, and George Thomas. Tennis players who also play or have played chess include Boris Becker, Bob and Mike Bryan, Michael Chang, Jennifer Capriati, Elena Dementieva, Roger Federer, Anna Kournikova, Ivan Lendl, and Max Mirnyi.

Teschner, Rudolf (1922- )

German International Master (1957). East German champion in 1948 and West German champion in 1951. For over 30 years, he was editor of the Deutsche Schachzeitung chess magazine.

Teske, Henrik (1968- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2494.

Theresa of Avila, Saint (1515-1582)

Spanish nun who wrote a devotional work, The Way of Perfection, using chess in allegory. She played chess with her father, relatives, and brothers. In her religious writings, she often used chess to illustrate her meditations about ethics and faith. In 1944, the Church authorities in Spain proclaimed her the patron saint of chess players.

Thipsay, Praveen (1959- )

Indian Grandmaster. Commonwealth Champion in 1985. His FIDE rating is 2488.

Thomas, George Alan (1881-1972)

British chess champion in 1923 and 1934, 7-time British badminton champion (he won 21 British badminton titles between 1903 and 1928), and quarter-finalist tennis player at Wimbledon (1922). He was born in Constantinople. His mother, Lady Edith Thomas, who taught him chess, was the winner of the first British women's chess championship at Hastings in 1895. He was on the winning tennis doubles team championship at Wimbledon in 1919. In 1946 he won the London chess championship at the age of 65. He won the London championship 16 times. He was also an internationally ranked hockey, squash and table-tennis player. He finished tied for first at Hastings, ahead of Capablanca, Botvinnik, and Lilienthal, all three of whom he defeated. He was the founder of the International Badminton Federation and its president for 21 years. He became “Sir George” when he succeeded his father, Sir George Sidney Meade Thomas, as the 7th Baronet in 1918. In 1950, he was awarded the International Master title. In 1952, he was awarded the International Judge title.

Tylor – Thomas, Margate 1937
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 c6 3.c4 Nf6 4.e3 Bf5 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.Bc4 e6 7.O-O Nd7 8.Re1 N5b6 9.Bb3 Be7 10.e4 Bg6 11.Nc3 O-O 12.Bf4 c5 13.d5 c4 14.dxe6 fxe6 15.Nd4 Nc5 16.Bxc4 Nxc4 0-1

Thompson, Theophilus (1855-1910?)

First African-American chess player and perhaps the first Black chess master. He contributed several chess problems to the Dubuque Chess Journal. In 1873 he wrote Chess Problems: Either to Play and Mate.

Thorbergsson, Freysteinn (1931- )

Icelandic champion in 1960 and Nordic champion in 1965.


The first tie breaking system used was the Sonnenborn-Berger (SB) system at Vienna in 1873. The SB system is the sum of the total scores of the players that the opponent beat, plus half the scores of the players that the opponent drew. The Buchholtz system is the sum of the opponent’s scores.

Tiller, Bjorn (1959- )

Norwegian International Master (1982). Norwegian champion in 1983.

Time limit

The Anderssen-Kolisch match in 1861 was the first time a time-limit was used. An hour-glass gave each player 2 hours to make 24 moves. Tumbling clocks were introduced at London in 1883. The modern chess clock was introduced in 1900 by Veenhoff and Groningen.

Timman, Jan (1951- )

Dutch Grandmaster (1974) and author. He has won the Dutch championship 9 times. He was the third Dutch player to become a GM, after Euwe and Donner. In 1993 he lost to Karpov in the FIDE world championship (2 wins, 6 losses, and 13 draws).

Timman – Cosulich, Venedig 1974
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 b6 5.Nge2 Ba6 6.Ng3 d5?? 7.Qa4+ 1-0

Timofeev, Artyom (1985- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2661.

Timoshchenko, Gennadi (1949- )

Grandmaster (1980) from the Ukraine who now lives in Slovakia.

Tischbierek, Raj (1962- )

Grandmaster from Germany. His FIDE rating is 2466.

Tisdall, Jonathan (1958)

Grandmaster now living in Norway. His FIDE rating is 2442.

Tiviakov, Sergei (1973- )

Grandmaster from the Netherlands. His FIDE rating is 2678.

Tkachiev, Vladislav (2625)

Grandmaster now living in France. His FIDE rating in 2625.

Todorcevic, Miodrag (1940- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1989). He won the French championship in 1975.

Tolnai, Tibor (1964- )

Grandmaster from Hungry. His FIDE rating is 2459.

Tolush, Alexander (1910-1969)

Russian Grandmaster (1953). Leningrad champion in 1937, 1938, 1946, and 1947. He took 2nd in the 1950 USSR championship, behind Keres. He was an early trainer for Boris Spassky and he was a chess journalist. He was a tank officer during the siege of Leningrad.


The death date on Alekhine's tombstone in Paris, March 25th, is wrong. He died on the night of March 23rd/24th. His birth date is also wrong. The tombstone says he was born 1st November, 1892. He was born on October 31, 1892. The tombstone for Howard Staunton has a large knight on the headstone.

Topalov, Veselin (1975- )

Bulgarian Grandmaster (1992). He was a chess master by the age of 12. In 1989 he won the World Under-14 championship. In 1990, he took 2nd in the World Under-16 Championship. At age 17 he was a grandmaster. In October, 2005, he won the FIDE World Championship tournament, held in San Luis, Argentina.

Pons – Topolov, Palma de Mallorca 1992
1.Nf3 f5 2.e4 fxe4 3.Ng5 d5 4.d3 Qd6 5.dxe4 h6 6.Qh5+ g6 7.Qh4 Bg7 8.Nf3 g5 9.Qh5+ Kf8 10.e5 Bxe5 11.Bd3 Nc6 12.O-O Nf6 13.Qg6 Bg4 14.Bxg5 hxg5 15.Nxg5 Bxh2+ 16.Kh1 Bf4+ (17.Kg1 Bxg5 18.Qxg5 Qh2 mate) 0-1

Toran Albero, Roman (1931- )

Spanish International Master (1954). He was Spanish champion in 1951 and 1953.

Torre-Repetto, Carlos (1905-1978)

Mexico's first grandmaster (1977). He was born in Merida, Yucatan. He won the Louisiana state championship in 1923. He won the New York state chess championship in 1924. He quit serious chess in 1926, at the age of 22, after playing only two years professionally. He was once found running down Fifth Avenue in New York completely nude. He had suffered a nervous breakdown from the stress of chess and the social gathering invitations. While competing in Chicago in 1926, he received two letters from Mexico. The first letter reneged on a teaching offer at the University of Mexico because Torre did not have any academic credentials. The second letter was from his French-American fiancée who decided to marry another man. He never married. He was addicted to pineapple sundaes and consumed about 15 a day, according to Reuben Fine. He played against three world champions and had a plus score. He defeated Lasker, and drew with Capablanca and Alekhine.

Unknown – C. Torre, Mexico 1928
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Ng3 h5 6.Bxf6 hxg3 7.Be5 Rxh2 8.Be5 Rxh2 9.Rxh2 Qa5+ 10.c3 Qxe5+ 11.dxe5 gxh2 0-1

Torre, Eugenio (1951- )

Philippine grandmaster (1974) and Asia's first grandmaster. He was once voted one of the ten sexiest sportsmen in the Philippines and was featured in a movie. He is president of the National Chess Federation of the Philippines. Torre served as Fischer’s second during the 1992 Fischer-Spassky return match. He was the first player to both finish first ahead of World Champion Karpov in a tournament and the first to defeat him in an individual encounter (Manila, 1976).

Toth, Bela (1943- )

International Master (1974). He was born in Hungary and is now a citizen of Italy. He won the Italian Championship in 1975, 1976, 1981, 1982, and 1984.


The world's first chess tournament was held at the Royal Court in Madrid in 1575. Polerio and Leonardo defeated Ruy Lopez and Ceron in a series of matches arranged by King Phillip II. The first national tournament held in the U.S. was the American Chess Congress, held in New York in 1857 and won by Paul Morphy. First prize was a silver service valued at $300. The most grueling international tournament ever held was at Jurata, Poland in 1937. The 22 masters had to play 21 games in 14 days with no adjournments. In 1985, 1,251 players entered the World Open in Philadelphia, the most players ever to compete in one tournament at the master level. In 2004, the UK Challenge Tournament had over 71,000 chessplayers, the largest tournament in the world Over 2,000 schools participated.

Trade Unions

In 1927, Alexander Ilyan-Genevsky won the first USSR Trade Unions Chess Championship. By the 1930s, every labor union had a team with at least 28 registered players. The Moscow Motor Works trade union had 26 different sports clubs, but the chess club was the largest. The largest tournament ever held was the 1935-36 USSR Trade Unions Chess championship. There were 700,000 entrants to this chess tournament in the Soviet Union. It was finally won by Lilienthal.

Trading with the Enemy Act

Charge in which the U.S. State Department charged Bobby Fischer for violating because he played chess against Boris Spassky in Yugoslavia in 1992, giving Yugoslavia positive exposure. For that reason, Bobby Fischer has not returned to the United States for fear of arrest. It has a $250,000 fine and a 10 year jail sentence as punishment. Fischer signed the contract to play chess in April 1991. The trade embargo against Yugoslavia was imposed in March 1992. An exception was for sports events. The U.S. did not interpret chess as a sport. In June 1992, the U.S. Treasury Department sent a letter to Fischer warning him that he would be in violation for “trading with the enemy.” The match was played in August 1992. A warrant for the arrest of Bobby Fischer was made after the start of the Fischer-Spassky match.

Tranmer, Eileen B. (1910-1983)

British chess player who won the British Ladies’ Championship with a perfect 11-0

in 1949. She won the British Ladies’ Championship four times (1947, 1949, 1953, 1961). She took 5th-7th place in the World Championship for Women in 1949-1950. She took 7th place at the 1952 Women’s Candidates Tournament. She was awarded the International Woman Master title in 1950. She was a musician by profession until deafness compelled her to retire. She then took up chess.

Tregubov, Pavel (1971- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2607.

Treybal, Karel (1885-1941)

One of the strongest Czech chess players of his period. He was a lawyer and district judge. He was Czech Champion in 1907 and 1921. During the Nazi occupation of Prague in 1941, he was charged with illegal possession of a firearm and condemned to death. He was executed by the Nazis (Reinhard Heydrich) in Prague the same day, October 2, 1941.

Treybal – Rejfir, Prague 1933
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Bb4 6.Bd3 d5 7.e5 Nfd7 8.Qg4 Bf8 9.Nxe6 Qa5 10.Nxg7+ Kd8 11.Bg5+ 1-0

Trifunovic, Petar (1910-1980)

Croation Grandmaster (1953). Yugoslav Champion in 1945, 1946, 1947, 1952, and 1961.

Tringov, Georgi (1937- )

Bulgarian Grandmaster (1963). Bulgarian Champion in 1963, 1981, and 1985.

Troianescu, Octavio (1916-1980)

Romanian International Master (1950). Romanian Champion in 1946, 1954, 1956, 1957, and 1968.

Troitzky, Alexy (1866-1942)

Founder of the modern endgame study composition (along with Henri Rinck). In 1928 he was named an Honored Art Worker by the Russian government, recognizing chess composition as an art form. He died of starvation at the siege of Leningrad. He composed over a thousand chess problems and is regarded as the greatest chess composer of endgame studies. He was a forest engineer in remote parts of Russia.

Trotsky, Leon (1877-1940)

Bolshevik leader. His real name was Lev Davidovich Bronstein and his father was named David Bronstein. Trotsky was an avid chess player. He spent much of his time during World War I playing chess in Vienna. He died from a skull fracture with a pick axe when he was attacked by a French Jew at his home in Mexico City.

Tseitlin, Mark (1943- )

Russian International Master (1978). Leningrad champion in 1975, 1976, and 1978.

Tseitlin, Mihail (1947- )

Russian Grandmaster (1987). Moscow champion in 1976 and 1977.

Tseshkovsky, Vitaly (1944- )

Russian grandmaster (1975). In 1978 he tied for first place with Tal in the 46th USSR championship. In 1979 he took last place. In 1986 he won the 53rd USSR championship. In 1987 he took last place.

Tsvetkov, Alexander (1914- )

Bulgarian International Master (1950). Bulgarian champion in 1938, 1940, 1945, 1948, 1950, and 1951.

Tuggle, Jesse (1928-1991)

Most active USCF player from 1985 to 1990. In 1988 he played a record 771 rated games, mostly in Houston, Texas. From 1985 to February, 1991 he played over 3,400 tournament rated games. He said he wanted to get through the opening so that he could win in the Middlegame or the Endgame, whichever came first.

Tukmakov, Vladimir (1946- )

Ukrainian Grandmaster (1972). He came in 2nd in the 1970 and 1984 USSR Championship.

Doroshkievich-Tukmakov, Riga 1970
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Nf3 f5 4.d4 e4 5.Bg5 Nf6 6.d5 exf3 7.dxc6 fxg2 8.cxd7 Nxd7 0-1

Turk, The

Nickname of the first automation. Made by Wolfgang von Kempelen in 1789. Operators included Allgaier in 1809, Weyle in 1818, Boncourt in 1818, William Lewis in 1818 to 1819, Mouret in 1820, and Schlumberger (1826 to 1838). It was later bought by Napoleon's stepson, Eugene de Beauharnais, for the sum of 30,000 francs, simply in order to learn the secret of its operation. A former operator, Mouret, sold the secret of its operation to a French magazine, Magasin Pittoresque in 1834. J.N. Maelzel bought the Turk from von Kempelen and took it around various cities in the United States in 1826. The Turk created the first U.S. chess craze. At its first appearance in Baltimore, two boys hiding on the roof overlooking the Turk discovered a man getting in and out of the machine. Articles appeared immediately in the Baltimore Gazette, exposing Maelzel’s trickery. Edgar Allan Poe analyzed how the “machine” worked in April, 1836 and wrote an article exposing the machine in Southern Literary Messenger. The Turk was destroyed by the great fire Philadelphia in 1856, where the Turk was stored in the Chinese Museum.

Napoleon – The Turk (Allgaier), Schoenbrunn 1809
1.e4 e5 2.Qf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Ne2 Bc5 5.a3 d6 6.O-O Bg4 7.Qd3 Nh5 8.h3 Bxe2 9.Qxe2 Nf4 10.Qe1 Nd4 11.Bb3 Nxh3+ 12.Kh2 Qh4 13.g3 Nf3+ 14.Kg2 Nxe1+ 15.Rxe1 Qg4 16.d3 Bxf2 17.Rh1 Qxg3+ 18.Kf1 Bd4 19.Ke2 Qg2+ 20.Kd1 Qxh1+ 21.Kd2 Qg2+ 22.Ke1 Ng1 23.Nc3 Bxc3+ 24.bxc3 Qe2 mate 0-1

Turner, Abe (1924-1962)

Chess master who was killed after being stabbed nine times in the back and stuffed in a safe by a fellow employee, Theodore Smith, at Chess Review Magazine. Abe had been working there for about three weeks. Smith had been recently released from an asylum and claimed that Abe Turner was a Communist spy and had to be killed on orders from the Secret Service. His body was stuffed in a large wall safe in a basement on 72nd Street in New York. The offices of Chess Review were on the 3rd floor. Turner weighed 280 pounds and was dragged 40 feet along the basement corridor and shoved into the safe. The body was found by Miguel Vasquez, the building superintendent.

Turover, Isador S. (1892-1978)

Chess master and champion of Baltimore from 1918 to 1921. In 1923 he founded a lumber and millwork company. He became a chess patron and philanthropist who offered cash prizes for brilliancy prizes. He was director of the American Chess Foundation. He died at the age of 86.

Turtel, Evan (1972- )

At age 9 he became the youngest player to beat a master when he defeated Alan Williams (2322) at a chess tournament in New York City. Turtel's rating at the time was 1605. In 1984 he won the National Elementary School Chess Championship in Syracuse, New York with a perfect 8-0 score. He received a B.S. in Computer Science at Cornell University.

Tylor, Theodore Henry (1900-1968)

British Correspondence Champion from 1932 to 1935. For nearly 40 years, he was a Fellow and tutor in jurisprudence at Oxford. He was 2nd in the 1933 British championship, behind Sultan Khan.

Ubilava, Elizbar (1950- )

Grandmaster (1988) from Tbilisi, now living in Spain. His FIDE rating is 2519.

Udovcic, Mijo (1920- )

Yugoslav Grandmaster (1952). Yugoslav champion in 1963. He is a lawyer by profession.


The Uganda Chess Association formed in 1972 after the Fischer-Spassky match. They joined FIDE in 1976. In 1976 their team played in the counter-Olympiad team in Tripoli. In 1982 the Ugandan chess team showed up at Lugano, Switzerland instead of Lucerne, Switzerland for the 1982 chess Olympiad. The Olympiad was held in Lugano in 1968.

Uhlmann, Wolfgang (1935- )

German grandmaster (1959). He won the East German championship eleven times. In 1971 he became a World Championship Candidate, but was eliminated by Bent Larsen in the quarter finals.

Uhlmann – Ljubojevic, Niksic 1978
1.c4 c5 2.Nf3 g6 3.d4 Bg7 4.e4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 Nc6 6.Be3 d6 7.Nc3 e6 8.Be2 e6 9.Qd2 Ne5 10.Rd1 Qc7 11.Ndb5 axb5 12.Nxb5 Qc6 13.Nxd6+ Ke7 14.Qb4 Kf6 15.f4 g5 16.fxe5+ Kg6 17.Nxf7 1-0

Uitumen, Tudev (1939- )

First player from Mongolia to gain the title of international master (1965).

Ujtekly, Maxilian (1915- )

Czech International Master (1961). He is a direct descendant of Franz Liszt.

Ulibin, Mikhail (1971- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2529.

Umansky, Mikhail (1952- )

USSR Correspondence Champion in 1978. He won the 13th World Correspondence Championsip (1989-1998).

Univac computer

In 1948 the Univac (universal automatic computer) was advertised as the strongest computer in the world. So strong, that it could play chess and gin rummy so perfectly, that no human opponent could

beat it.


The first university to offer a course on chess was Moscow University in 1965. 2,000 students signed up for the course.

Unzicker, Wolfgang (1925- )

German grandmaster (1954). West German champion in 1948, 1950, 1952, 1959, 1963, and 1965. He was East and West German Champion in 1953. He was the strongest West German player from 1945 to about 1970. From 1950 to 1978 he competed in 12 chess Olympiads for West Germany. His FIDE rating is 2433. He is a judge of an administrative court.

Urday, Henry (1967- )

Grandmaster from Peru. His FIDE rating is 2482. He is president of the Chess Federation of Peru.

Uregel, Count

His will, written in 1008, bequeathing his chessmen to a church, is the first reference to chess in Europe.


First country in South America to have a chess magazine. In 1881, the Revista de ajedrez was published in Uruguay. Uruguay became a member of FIDE in 1937.

Urzica, Aurel (1952- )

Romanian International Master (1980). In 1969 he tied for 2nd place (with Adorjan) in the World Junior Championship, behind Karpov. He was the Romanian Champion in 1974.

USA-USSR Radio Match

The first meeting between teams representing the USA and the USSR was a match by radio that took place on September 3-5, 1945. It was a double round, 10 board a side match. The Soviet team won by the score of 15 ½ -4 ½. Only Herman Steiner, on board 6 for the USA, managed a plus score (1 win and 1 draw against Bondarevsky).

U. S. Championship – Men

The 2005 U.S. championship was the 49th since 1936. 25 players have won the title at least once. Bobby Fischer has won it 8 times. Walter Browne and Sammy Reshevsky have won it 6 times. Of Browne’s titles, 3 were shared.

1840-1845 Rousseau

1845-1857 Stanley

1857-1871 Morphy

1871-1876 Mackenzie

1876 Mason

1877-1887 Mackenzie

1888 Showalter Cincinnati, OH

1890 Showalter St Louis, MO

1891 Lipschutz Lexington, KY

1892-1894 Showalter

1894-1895 Hodges

1895-1897 Showalter

1897-1906 Pillsbury

1909-1936 Marshall

1. 1936 Reshevsky New York, NY

2. 1938 Reshevsky New York, NY

3. 1940 Reshevsky New York, NY

4. 1942 Reshevsky, Kashdan New York, NY

5. 1944 Denker New York, NY

6. 1946 Reshevsky New York, NY

7. 1948 Steiner South Fallsburg, NY

8. 1951 Evans, Steiner New York, NY

9. 1954 Bisguier New York, NY

10. 1957/58 Fischer (age 14) New York, NY

11. 1958/59 Fischer New York, NY

12. 1959/60 Fischer New York, NY

13. 1960/61 Fischer New York, NY

14. 1961/62 Evans New York, NY

15. 1962/63 Fischer New York, NY

16. 1963/64 Fischer New York, NY

17. 1965 Fischer New York, NY

18. 1966/67 Fischer New York, NY

19. 1968 Evans New York, NY

20. 1969 Reshevsky New York, NY

21. 1972 Byrne, Kavalek, Reshevsky New York, NY

22. 1973 Kavalek, Grefe El Paso, TX

23. 1974 Browne Chicago, IL

24. 1975 Browne Oberlin, OH

25. 1977 Browne Mentor, OH

26. 1978 Kavalek Pasadena, CA

27. 1980 Browne, Christiansen, Evans Greenville, PA

28. 1981 Browne, Seirawan South Bend, IN

29. 1983 Christiansen, Dzindziashvili, Browne Greenville, PA

30. 1984 Alburt Berkeley, CA

31. 1985 Alburt Estes Park, CO

32. 1986 Seirawan Estes Park, CO

33. 1987 Benjamin, deFirmian Estes Park, CO

34. 1988 Michael Wilder Cambridge Springs, PA

35. 1989 Seirawan, Dzindzihashvili, Rachels Long Beach, CA

36. 1990 Lev Alburt Jacksonville, FL

37. 1991 Kata Kamsky (age 17) Los Angeles, CA

38. 1992 Patrick Wolff Durango, CO

39. 1993 Shabalov and Yermolinsky Long Beach, CA

40. 1994 Boris Gulko Key West, FL

41. 1995 Patrick Wolff (tb), N. deFirmian, A. Ivanov Modesto, CA

42. 1996 Yermolinsky Parsippany, NJ

43. 1997 Benjamin Chandler

44. 1998 deFirmian Denver, CO

45. 1999 Gulko Seattle, WA

46. 2000 Benjamin, Shabalov, Seirawan Seattle, WA

47. 2002 Christiansen Seattle, WA

48. 2003 Shabalov Seattle, WA

49. 2004 Nakamura (age 16) San Diego, CA

U.S. Chess Federation (USCF)

Formed in September, 1939 after the American Chess Federation (ACF) merged with the National Chess Federation (NCF). George Sturgis was the first USCF President. He had been president of the ACF. The president of the NCF, Maurice Kuhns, became the President Emeritus. L. Walter Stephens became the Vice President. Dues were $1 a year. The original name was United States of America Chess Federation. The first USCF rating list appeared in Chess Life on November 20, 1950. There were 2,400 players on that list.

U.S. Chess Hall of Fame

The U. S. Chess Hall of Fame members include Paul Morphy, Robert Fischer, Reuben Fine, Frank Marshall, Isaac Kashdan, George Koltanowski, Harry Pillsbury, Sammy Reshevsky, Sam Loyd, William Steinitz, Arpad Elo, Hermann Helms, I.A. Horowitz, Hans Berliner, John Collins, Arthur Dake, Arnold Denker, Gisela Gresser, George Mackenzie, Pal Benko, Victor Palciauskas, Arthur Bisguier, Larry Evans, Robert Byrne, Ed Edmondson, Fred Reinfeld, Kenneth Harkness, Milan Vukcevich, Benjamin Franklin, Edmar Mednis, Lubomir Kavalek, and Walter Browne.

U.S. Junior Championship

Walter Browne won the first invitational U.S. Junior Chess Championship in 1966.

U.S. Open

The first U.S. Open chess championship was held in Minnesota in 1900. In 1955 the first place prize at the U.S. Open in Long Beach was a new Buick. It was won by Nicolas Rossolimo. The 2005 US Open, held in Phoenix, was won by Vadim Milov and Joel Benjamin.

USSR Chess Championship

Also see Soviet Championship. The winners of the USSR Chess Championship were:

01. 1920 Moscow Alekhine

02. 1923 Petrograd Romanovsky

03. 1924 Moscow Bogoljubow

04. 1925 Leningrad Bogoljubow

05. 1927 Moscow Bohatirchuk, Romanovsky

06. 1929 Odessa Verlinksy

07. 1931 Moscow Botvinnik

08 1933 Leningrad Botvinnik

09. 1934 Leningrad Levenfish, Rabinovich

10. 1937 Tbilisi Levenfish

11. 1939 Leningrad Botvinnik

12. 1940 Moscow Lilienthal, Bondarevsky

13. 1944 Moscow Botvinnik

14. 1945 Moscow Botvinnik

15. 1947 Leningrad Keres

16. 1948 Moscow Bronstein, Kotov

17. 1949 Moscow Bronstein, Smyslov

18. 1950 Moscow Keres

19. 1951 Moscow Keres

20. 1952 Moscow Botvinnik

21. 1953 Kiev Averbakh

22. 1955 Moscow Geller

23. 1956 Leningrad Taimanov

24. 1957 Moscow Tal

25. 1958 Riga Tal

26. 1959 Tbilisi Petrosian

27. 1960 Leningrad Korchnoi

28. 1961 Moscow Petrosian

29. 1961 Baku Spassky

30. 1962 Erevan Korchnoi

31. 1963 Leningrad Stein

32. 1964 Kiev Korchnoi

33. 1965 Tallinn Stein

34. 1966 Tbilisi Stein

35. 1967 Kharkov Polugaevsky, Tal

36. 1968 Alma Ata Polugaevsky

37. 1969 Moscow Petrosian

38. 1970 Riga Korchnoi

39. 1971 Leningrad Savon

40. 1972 Baku Tal

41. 1973 Moscow Spassky

42. 1974 Leningrad Beliavsky, Tal

43. 1975 Erevan Petrosian

44. 1976 Moscow Karpov

45. 1977 Leningrad Gulko, Dorfman

46. 1978 Tbilisi Tal, Czeshkovsky

47. 1979 Minsk Geller

48. 1980 Vilnius Psakhis, Beliavsky

49. 1981 Frunz Kasparov, Psakhis

50. 1983 Moscow Karpov

51. 1984 Lvov Sokolov

52. 1985 Riga Gavrikov, M. Gurevich, Chernin

53. 1986 Kiev Czeshkovsky

54. 1987 Minsk Beliavsky

55. 1988 Moscow Karpov, Kasparov

56. 1989 Odessa Vaganian

60. 1990 Leningrad Beliavsky, Yudasen, Bareev, Vyzmanavin

61. 1991 Moscow Minasian

Uusi, Gunnar (1931-1981)

Estonian champion in 1958, 1959, 1963, 1966, and 1979.

Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime (1990-)

Born on Oct 21, 1990 in France. In 2002, he was 2nd in the World Under-14 Championship. In 2005, he became a Grandmaster at the age of 14 years, 4 months.

Vadasz, Laszlo (1948- )

Hungarian Grandmaster (1976). He took 3rd in the 1976 Hungarian championship.

Vaganian, Rafael (1951- )

Armenian Grandmaster (1971). He won the USSR championship in 1989. His peak FIDE rating was 2667.

Vainstein, Boris

Former President of the Soviet Chess Federation. He was also a Colonel in the KGB. He later became a chess author and assisted David Bronstein in writing Zurich International Chess Tournament, 1953. In 1945, as President of the Soviet Chess Federation, he objected to a world championship match between Botvinnik and Alekhine, declaring Alekhine a traitor.

Vaisser, Anatoly (1949- )

Grandmastr now living in France. His FIDE rating is 2576.

Vaitonis, Paul (1911-1983)

International Master (1952). He was born in Lithuania and emigrated to Canada in 1948. He was Lithuanian Champion in 1934, 1937, 1938, 1942, 1943, and 1944. He was Canadian Champion in 1951 and 1957.

Vajda, Arpad (1896-1967)

Champion of Hungary in 1928 and International Master (1950). He died as a result of a gas leak in a faulty oven. He had a PhD degree.

Valdiviesco, Don Antonio de (?-1550)

Bishop of Nicaragua who was assassinated while playing chess in his church at Leon.

Valvo, Mike (1942-2004)

International Master (1980). He spent much of his life working with computers. He was a commentator for the Kasparov vs. Deep Blue matches in 1996 and 1997.

Van Den Berg, Carel (1924-1971)

Dutch International Master (1963). He took a degree in law and philosophy, but became a full time chess professional.

Van Den Doel, Erik (1979- )

Grandmaster from the Netherlands. His FIDE rting is 2587.

Van Der Linde, Antonius (1833-1897)

Dutch chess historian and chess book collector. In 1876 he sold his library of 750 volumes to the Dutch Royal Library after being appointed librarian in Wiesbaden by the German emperor. In 1897 he wrote Researches in the History and Literature of Chess.

Van Der Sterren, Paul (1956- )

Grandmaster from the Netherlands. His FIDE rating is 2535.

Van Der Wiel, John (1959- )

Dutch grandmaster (1982). He was European Junior Champion in 1978-79 and Netherlands champion in 1984.

Van Geet, Dirk (1932- )

Dutch International Master (1965). His FIDE rating is 2288. He is a correspondence chess grandmaster. 1.Nc3 is sometimes known as the Van Geet opening.

Van Oosterom, Joop (1937- )

Correspondence Grandmaster (1993) from the Netherlands and 18th World Correspondence Champion (2003-2005). He finished 2nd-4th in the 15th World Correspondence Chess championship (1996-2002). He is a Dutch billionaire and chess patron that sponsors the Melody Amber (his daughter) chess events in Monte Carlo. He made his fortune as the founder of the Volmac Software Group.

Sinke – Van Oosterom, Correspondence 1981
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Nc3 c6 5.d4 Bb4 6.e5 Ne4 7.Kf1 Nxc3 8.bxc3 Bxc3 9.Ba3 b5 10.Qg4 g6 11.Qxf4 d5 12.Qh6 Be6 0-1

Van Scheltinga, Tjeerd (1914-1994)

Dutch International Master (1965). His occupation was a carpenter. In 1947, he tied for 1st in the Dutch championship, but lost the play-off to Euwe.

Reid – Van Scheltinga, Stockholm 1937
1.e4 e5 2.f4 Bc5 3.Nf3 d6 4.Bc4 Nc6 5.c3 Bg4 6.d4 exd4 7.O-O Nf6 8.e5 dxe5 9.fxe5 dxc3+ 10.Kh1 Qxd1 11.Rxd1 Ne4 12.Rf1 Nf2+ 13.Kg1 Nd1+ 0-1

Van Wely, Loek (1972- )

Grandmaster from the Netherlands. In 2002, he drew a match with REBEL with 2 wins and 2 losses. He won the Dutch championship in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005. His peak FIDE rating is 2714.

Van Wely – Dalderop, Europe 1987
1.d4 g6 2.e4 Bg7 3.Nc3 d6 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.Qe2 e5 6.dxe5 dxe5 7.Nf3 Nbd7 8.Bg5 c6 9.O-O-O Qa5 10.Rd6 O-O 11.Rhd1 h6 12.Bh4 b5 13.Bb3 b4 14.Na4 Ba6 15.Qe3 Bb5 16.Bxf6 Nxf6 17.Nc5 Ng4 18.Qd2 Bc4 19.Bxc4 Qxc5 20.Rxg6 Qxc4 21.Rxg4 f5 22.b3 Qa6 23.Rxg7+ Kxg7 24.Qxb4 1-0

Van’t Kruijs (Kruys) (1811-1885)

Dutch player who won the 6th Dutch championship in 1878. In the 1860s, he popularized the opening 1.e3, now known as Van’t Kruys opening.

Varavin, Viktor (1967- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2439.

Varga, Zoltan (1970- )

Grandmaster from Hungary. His FIDE rating is 2497.

Varzhapetian, M.

Chess player from Russia. He had the worst performance in any Soviet chess championship, both in terms of overall percentage and lowest finish. In 1967, at the 35th USSR Championship in Kharkov, he scored 1½ – 11½ and ended up in 126th place.


A Sanskrit romance written by Subandhu in 590. It is the first written evidence of a form of chess.

Vasiliev, Viktor (1916-1950)

One of the strongest Leningrad masters in the 1930s and 1940s. He was seriously wounded in the siege of Leningrad.

Vasiukov, Evgeny (1933- )

Soviet Grandmaster (1961). Bobby Fischer played him several blitz games in 1956 in Moscow. When Vasiukov again met Fischer in 1971, Fischer was able to recite back all the moves they played in 1956. In 1967, he took 3rd place in the USSR championship. He was Moscow champion in 1955, 1958, 1960, 1962, 1972, and 1978. In 1998 he was the chess trainer of the Turkish National Chess Team. His FIDE rating is 2495.

Vasiukov – A. Zaitzev, Berlin 1968
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.c4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Nf3 Bg4 7.cxd5 Nxd5 8.Qb3 Bxf3 9.gxf3 e6 10.Qxb7 Nxd4 11.Bb5+ Nxb5 12.Qc6+ Ke7 13.Nxb5 a6 14.Nd4 Nb4 15.Bg5+ 1-0

Vaughan, Stan (1956- )

Chess master and record-holder for the most simultaneous correspondence chess games. In 1988 he was playing 1,124 postal games. He is now involved with politics in Nevada.

Vaulin, Alexander (1957- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2515.

Vaux Middle School

A junior high school in North Philadelphia that won the Junior High School Championship seven years in a row, from 1977 to 1983. They won again in 1997. Their chess team name was the Bad Bishops (now the Mighty Bishops). The chess club was originally started as an activity for disruptive or underachieving students.

Velikov, Petar (1951- )

Grandmaster from Bulgaria. His FIDE rating is 2422.

Velimirovic, Dragoljub (1942- )

Grandmaster (1973) from Serbia and Montenegro. Nicknamed the Yugoslavian Tal. In 1986 he was rated 2575 and one of the top 15 players in the world. He has been Yugoslav champion twice (1970 and 1975). His mother, Jovanka Velimirovic, was Yugoslavia’s first women’s champion. His FIDE rating is 2472.

Velimirovic – Donner, Denmark 1962
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.c3 d3 5.Bxd3 d6 6.h3 Nf6 7.O-O Be7 8.Nd4 O-O 9.Nd2 Re8 10.f4 Bf8 11.Qc2 g6 12.N2f3 Nd7 13.Bc4 Nb6 14.Bd3 Nb8 15.f5 N8d7 16.fxg6 fxg6 17.Bg5 Nf6 18.Qb3+ 1-0

Vera Gonzalez, Reynaldo (1961- )

Grandmaster from Cuba. His FIDE rating is 2490.

Vera Menchik Club

Players who lost to Vera Menchik. Before the start of the Carlsbad International Tournament in 1929, Albert Becker said if man should lose to this woman, he would be a member of the Vera Menchik Club. His was the first member. Other members included Max Euwe, Sammy Reshevsky, Mir Sultan Khan, Sir George Thomas, C. H. O'D. Alexander, Edgar Colle, Frederick Yates, William Winter, Lajos Steiner, Frederich Saemisch, Milner-Barry, Harry Golombek, Karel Opocensky, and Jacques Mieses (who lost to her four times in a match).

Veresov, Gavriil (1912-1979)

International master (1950). Champion of Belorussia who was Captain of the Guards and wounded several times during World War II. He arrived from the front lines to play in the 1944 USSR National Championship in Moscow.

Litvinov – Veresov, Minsk 1958
1.c4 f5 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 e6 4.Nf3 Bb4 5.Qc2 O-O 6.e3 b6 7.Be2 Bb7 8.O-O Bxc3 9.Qxc3 Ne4 10.Qc2 Rf6 11.Nd2 Rh6 12.g3 Qh4 13.Nf3 Ng5 0-1

Vergani, Beniamino (1863-1927)

Champion of Italy who played in Hastings, 1895. He ended up in last place and only scored 3 points out of 21. He was so thoroughly disgusted with his game that he never played in a masters' tournament again. He wrote a chess column for the Illustrated Sport of Milan from 1890 to 1897.

Verlinsky, Boris (1888-1950)

International master (1950). USSR Champion in 1929 (6th USSR Championship in Odessa). He won the championship of Moscow in 1928. He was the first Soviet to be given the title Grandmaster of the USSR (1929). The title was abolished in 1931. He was partially deaf.

Rusakov – Verlinsky, Moscow 1947
1.e4 e5 2.c3 Nc6 3.d4 Nf6 4.Bg5 h6 5.Bh4 g5 6.Bg3 exd4 7.e5 dxc3 8.exf6 cxb2 9.Qe2+ Qe7! 10.fxe7 Bg7 0-1

Vetula, The

A 13th century Latin poem in which the invention of chess is attributed to Ulysses at the siege of Troy.

Vicent, Francesch (1450-1512)

Author of the oldest book on chess openings, published in Spain in 1495.

Vida, Marcus (Marco) Hieronymus (1489-1566)

Bishop of Alba, Italy and chess poet. In 1510 he wrote Scacchia Ludus (The Game of Chess), a chess poem. It was published in 1527. The aim of the poem was to describe in Latin a game of chess played between Apollo and Mercury in the presence of other Gods. The poem has 658 verses.

Video Cassette

The first video chess cassette starred Orson Welles, Yasser Seirawan, and Larry Christiansen, in 1983. Welles was the narrator of the two-hour cassette.

Vidmar, Milan (1885-1962)

Yugoslavia’s first Grandmaster (1950). He was Nordic champion in 1909. He was Yugoslav champion in 1939. He was an electrical engineer (PhD). He was a specialist in power transformers. He was also the Chancellor of the University of Ljubljana.

Norman-Hansen – Vidmar, Harsting 1926
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.e4 Nxe5 5.f4 Nec6 6.Be3 Bb4+ 7.Nd2 Qe7 8.Qf3 d6 9.Bd3 Nd7 10.Ne2 Nde5 11.fxe5 Nxe5 12.Qg3 Nxd3+ 0-1

Vidmar – Goldsand, Vienna 1902
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.h4 g4 5.Ng5 h6 6.Nxf7 Kxf7 7.d4 d5 8.Bxf4 Nf6 9.Nc3 Bb4 10.Bd3 Bxc3+ 11.bxc3 Nxe4 12.O-O Kg6 13.Qe2 Bf5 14.Be5 Rf8 15.Rxf5 Rxf5 16.Qxg4+ Kf7 17.Qxf5+ Nf6 18.Qg6+ 1-0

Vidmar, Milan Jr (1909-1980)

Yugoslav international master (1950). He was an electronics engineer by profession.

Vienna 1882

One of the strongest chess tournaments of all time. It was called the Second International Chess Tournament and was the strongest chess tournament up to that time. The top 9 players in the world participated. It was won by Steinitz and Winawer, each with a score of 24 out of 34, followed by Mason, Mackenzie, and Zukertort. Henry Mackenzie drew with Steinitz in the 3rd round. This ended the longest winning streak in the history of chess at the time. Steinitz had not drawn or lost a game since 1873, and won the last 25 games in a row from match and tournament play. The tournament was an 18-player double round robin. The tournament was held on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Vienna Chess Society (formed in October 1857), and sponsored my millionaire Ignaz von Kolisch and Baron Albert Rothschild. The patron was the emperor Franz-Joseph, who donated a special prize.

Virgin Islands

The British Virgin Islands first joined FIDE in 1934. The US Virgin Islands joined FIDE in 1966. The Virgin Islanders made their first appearance in a chess Olympiad in 1968. As one team, they played in the 1968, 1970, and 1972 chess Olympiad. In 1974, the islanders were represented at the chess Olympiad by two teams, the British Virgin Islands and the US Virgin Islands. In 2002, the U.S. Virgin Islands took last place (134th) at the chess Olympiad at Bled, Slovenia (but they had more fun than anyone else).

Vitolinsh, Alvis (1946-1977)

International Master (1984). He was Latvian champion in 1973, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1982, 1983, and 1985. He won the championship of the Baltic Republics in 1968. He committed suicide in 1997 by jumping into the frozen ice of the Guaja river from a railway bridge in 1997.

Vladimirov, Boris (1929- )

Russian international master (1964). He was Leningrad champion in 1963.

Vladimirov, Evgeny (1957- )

Grandmaster (1989) from Kazakhstan. In 1986, he was one of Kasparov;s seconds. During the world championship match with Karpov, Kasparov accused Vladimirov of passing information to Karpov’s camp. His FIDE rating is 2616.

Voellmy, Erwin (1886-1951)

Swiss champion in 1911, 1920, and 1922. He was a mathematics teacher at Basle Gymnasium and had a PhD in mathematics. He edited the chess column in the Basler Nachrichten for 40 years. He was the Swiss representative at the first meeting of FIDE in 1924. He represented Switzerland in the 1928 chess Olympiad

Vogt, Lothar (1952- )

German grandmaster (1976). East German champion in 1977 and 1979. His FIDE rating is 2484.

Vogt – Bricard, Wildbad 1990
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Qe7 4.O-O Nd8 5.d4 f6 6.Nc3 Nf7 7.Be3 g6 8.dxe5 fxe5 9.Nd5 Qd8 10.Ng5 Ngh6 11.Ne6 1-0

Volokitin, Andrei (1986- )

Ukrainian under-12 champion in 1997 and 1998. In 1998 he tied for 1st place (with T. Radjabov) in the world under-12 championship. Tied for 1st place in the world under-14 championship. In 2000, at the age of 14, he became an International Master. In 2001, at the age of 15, he became a Grandmaster. In 2004, he won the 73rd Ukrainian Championship. In 2005, he won the Lausanne Young Masters Internationa Chess tournament in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Volovich, Anatoly (1936- )

Moscow champion in 1967.

Volpert, Larissa (1926- )

Awarded the International Woman Master (1954) title and the Women’s Grandmaster (1977) title.. Three times Soviet Women’s champion (1954, 1958, 1959). She finished 2nd in the 1955 Women’s Candidates tournament (behind Rubtsova) and 3rd in the 1959 Candidates tournament (behind Zvorikina and Nedeljkovic).

Voltaire (1694-1778)

French philosopher and writer who was an enthusiastic chess player. He played a correspondence game with Frederick the Great of Prussia. He has been quoted as saying, “Chess is the game which reflects most honor or human wit.”

Von Balla, Zoltan (1883-1945)

See Balla

Votava, Jan (1974- )

Grandmaster from the Czech Republic. His FIDE rating is 2542.

Vukcevich, Milan (1937-2003)

International Master (1958) nominated for the Nobel prize in chemistry. He immigrated to Ohio from Yugoslavia in 1963. He tied for 1st place at the 1969 U.S. Open with Benko and Bisguier. He took third place in the U.S. Championship 1975 (behind Browne and Rogoff). He was a professor of metallurgy (Ph.D. from MIT) and Chief Scientist at General Electric. He was the first Grandmaster of Chess Composition (1988) from the United States. He won the 1955 Yugoslav Junior Championship. He was inducted in the US Chess Hall of Fame in 1998. In 1981 he wrote Chess by Milan.

Vukic, Milan (1942- )

Yugoslav grandmaster (1975). He won the Yugoslav championship in 1970, 1971, and 1974.

Vukovic, Vladimir (1898-1975)

Yugoslav International Master (1951) and chess writer. He was the editor of the chess magazine : Sahovski Glasnik.

Vyzmanavin, Alexey (1960-2000)

Russian Grandmaster (1989). USSR champion in 1990. He died of a heart attack a few days after his 40th birthday.

Wade, Robert (1921- )

International master (1950) who played a simultaneous exhibition against 30 Moscow schoolchildren in 1951 and didn't win a single game. He lost 20 games and drew 10 after 7 hours of play. He has won the New Zealand championship three times (1943, 1944, 1947) and the British championship twice (1952 and 1970). He was awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his services to chess in 1979.

Wade – Kinzel, Varna 1962
1.d4 d5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bg5 c6 4.Bxf6 gxf6 5.e3 e5 6.Qh5 e4 7.f3 f5 8.fxe4 fxe4?? 9.Qe5+ 1-0

Wade – Radiocic, Bognor Regis 1956
1.e4 e5 2.f4 d5 3.exd5 e4 4.d3 Nf6 5.Nd2 Bf5 6.dxe4 Nxe4 7.Qe2 Qe7 8.Ngf3 Nxd2 9.Bxd2 Bxc2 10.Ne5 Nd7 11.Rc1 Nxe5 12.Qxe5 Qxe5+ 13.fxe5 Be4 14.Rxc7 Bxd5 15.Bb5+ Bc6 16.Rxc6 1-0

Wagner, Elbert (1904-1970)

Chicago lawyer and second president of the United States Chess Federation (1945-1949). He was also a former editor of Chess Life magazine.

Wagner, Heinrich (1888-1959)

German international master. He represented Germany in the chess Olympiad in 1927, 1928, 1930, and 1931 (board 3).

Wahls, Matthias (1968- )

German Grandmaster (1989). His peak FIDE rating is 2580.

Wahls – Rajkovic, Germany 1991
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 e6 4.O-O Nge7 5.c3 a6 6.Ba4 d5 7.exd5 Qxd5 8.d4 b5 9.c4 Qd6 10.cxb5 Nxd4 11.bxa6+ Nec6 12.Bf4 Qd5 13.Nxd4 cxd4 14.Nc3 1-0

Waitzkin, Josh (1976- )

International Master. He is an 8-time National Chess Champion. In 1986, he won the National Primary Championship. In 1988, he won the National Junior High Championship. In 1989, he won the National Elementary Championship. He was a National Master at age 13. In 1991, he won the Senior High Championship in Atlanta, as well as the U.S. Cadet Championship (under 16). At 16, he became an International Master. In 1993, he was the U.S. Junior Co-Champion (with Kreiman). In 1994, he won the U.S. Junior Championship, held in Bloomington, Illinois. Waitkkin was the subject in the book and movie, Searching for Bobby Fischer.

Walker, George (1803-1879)

Writer of the first chess column to appear in a magazine, the Lancet, in 1823. The column lasted less than a year. In 1831 he formed the Westminster Chess Club, which was the leading club in England. In 1834 he arranged the match between La Bourdonnais and McDonnell. In 1835 he wrote a chess column in Bells Life in London. He wrote this chess column for 38 years, ending in 1873. In 1837 he was the editor of England's first chess magazine, The Philidorian. It existed for one year. In 1843 he founded the St. George’s Chess Club. He established the custom of recording games and using the players’ names. He was a book publisher and stock broker.

Walker – Popert, London 1841
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Bc4 Bb4+ 5.c3 dxc3 6.bxc3 Ba5 7.e5 d6 8.O-O dxe5 9.Bxf7+ Kxf7 10.Nxe5+ Ke8 11.Qh5+ g6 12.Nxg6 Nf6 13.Re1+ Be6 14.Rxe6+ Kf7 15.Nxh8+ Kxe6 16.Qh3+ Kd5 17.Qf5+ Kc4 18.Na3+ Kxc3 19.Qc5+ Kd3 20.Qc4+ 1-0

Wall, William (Bill)(1951- )

Chess author, player, and organizer. Past President of the North Carolina Chess Association and the Ohio Chess Association. Former president of the Dayton Chess Club and the Palo Alto Chess Club. Author of 29 chess books, including the 500 Miniature series. Retired Air Force major (USAF from 1970 to 1995). Biographer for http://www.chessgames.com/ . Contributer for http://www.chessville.com/. Chief computer security engineer for Harris Corporation.

Wang, Yue (1987- )

Chinese grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2576.

Wang, Zili (1968- )

Chinese grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2501.

Watkinson, John (1833-1923)

First editor of the British Chess Magazine, the oldest chess magazine in continuous publication. He was editor from 1881 to 1887.

Watson, Charles Gilbert (1879-1961)

Australian champion in 1922 and 1930-31.

Watson, John (1951- )

International master who was winner of the first National Scholastic High School Championship, held in New York City in 1969. He was written over 21 chess books. He was a BS in electrical engineering.

Watson, William (1962- )

Grandmaster from England. His FIDE rating is 2498. He was born in Baghdad, Iraq. He won the British championship in 1994. He is a lawyer.


Polish coat of arms used by several families of the noble class. Its earliest mention in 1368. It consists of a chessboard on a shield and a crowned Morrish woman on top of the shield bearing a smaller chessboard. The design was based on a Polish legend. A Slovak named Holub visited a royal Moorish court in his travels. The king’s daughter challenged him to a game of chess. The winner would hit the loser on the head with the chessboard. He did win, and hit her gently over the head with the chessboard. The Moorish king approved of the wager, and placed both the board and the princess on Holub’s crest.

Webb, Simon (1949-2005)

International Master (1977) and Correspondence Grandmaster (1983). In 1966 he won the British Under-18 championship. In 1969 he tied for 1st place (with Richard Eales) in the British Universities’ Championship. In 1978 he wrote Chess for Tigers. At one time, he was ranked 7th in the world in correspondence chess. He worked as a quality manager in Sweden. He also represented England at bridge, partnering with his younger brother. He was stabbed at least 20 times and murdered by his 25-year-old son (a convicted drug dealer) in his fifth floor Stockholm apartment. Simon had just returned from a chess tournament (Swedish Chess League finals) late at night. After the attack, his son tried to commit suicide by driving a car at high speed into a bus stop. Simon learned chess at the age of 7.

Wedberg, Tom (1953- )

Grandmaster from Sweden. His FIDE rating is 2501.

Weenink, Henri (1892-1931)

Dutch master and famous problem composer. He won at Amsterdam in 1930, ahead of Euwe and Spielmann. He died of tuberculosis. He played on the Netherlands chess Olympiad team in 1927, 1928, 1930, and 1931 (board 1).

Weinstein, Norman Stephen (1950- )

Winner of the 1968 US Junior Open (with Greg DeFotis), the 1972 Atlantic Open, the 1972 Massachusetts State Championship, and the 1973 US Open (on tiebreak over Browne, Suttles, DeFotis, and Rodriquez) in Chicago. He tied for 2nd (behind Walter Browne) in the 1972 US Open in Atlantic City, New Jersey. He became an International Master in 1975. He won the Canadian Open in 1976. He is now a very successful currency trader (Banker’s Trust).

Weinstein, Raymond Allen (1941- )

Winner of the 1958 U.S. Junior Championship. He played on two U.S. Olympiad teams and became an International Master (1962). He won the 1959 New Jersey Open and the 1960 Western Open. He won the Marshall Chess Club championship three times (1960-1962). He took 3rd in the 1960/61 US Championship. In 1964 he killed an 83-year old man in a nursing home with a razor – the first murder by a chess master. He was judged mentally ill and is confined to Ward’s Island for the Mentally Ill. His cousin is Grandmaster Arthur Bisguier.

Weiss, Max (1857-1927)

Austrian master. He tied for 1st with Chigorin at New York 1889 (both won $875). He was offered a world championship match with Steinitz after his victory in New York, but declined. He quit chess for a banking career (Rothschild Bank).

Wells, Peter (1965- )

Grandmaster from England. His FIDE rating is 2529.

Wenman, Francis (1891-1972)

Scottish champion in 1920. Author of several chess books.

Westerinen, Heikki (1944- )

Champion of Finland four times (1965, 1966, 1968, 1970) and first Grandmaster (1975) of Finland. His FIDE rating is 2388.

Western Chess Association

Founded in 1900 by a group of chess enthusiasts who met each summer at Excelsior, Minnesota. Its scope, at first, was limited to the promotion of chess in the Western and Central states. In 1934 it changed its name to the American Chess Federation. In 1939 the American Chess Federation merged with the National Chess Federation to form the United States Chess Federation.

Westminster Chess Club

Leading chess club in England in the 19th century. It was established in 1831 by George Walker. It was a room on the first floor of a coffee house in Bedford Street, Covent-garden. In 1834 this club accepted a challenge from the Paris chess club to a correspondence match of two games. Both games were won by the Paris players. In the game opened by Westminster, the Paris Chess Club played the French Defense (1.e4 e6), then known as the King’s Pawn One Defense. At the time, 1.e4 e6 was the most popular opening in France. Also in 1834, the club hosted the match between Louis-Charles de La Bourdonnais and Alexander McDonnell. William Greenwood Walker was the secretary of the Westminster Chess Club and recorded all the games between the two. After the match, the club had over 300 members. Howard Staunton was the club’s most celebrated member. The Westminster Chess Club came to an end in 1843, and its place as the leading chess club was taken by the St. George’s Club.

Wexler, Bernardo (1925- )

International Master from Argentina (1959). He was the Argentine champion in 1959. He played for Argentina in the chess Olympiad in 1956, 1960, and 1964.

Wheatcroft, George (1905-1987)

British Correspondence Champion in 1935. He was President of the British Chess Federation from 1953 to 1956. He was Professor of English Law.

Whitaker, Norman Tweed (1890-1975)

Lawyer with three law degrees and International Master (1965). He was Intercollegiate Champion of the U.S. From 1915 to 1931 he was quite active (President and Champion) in the Western Chess Association. In 1920 he played the first shortwave radio match in the U.S. in a match against Ed Lasker. In 1921, he was the top American in the 8th American Chess Congress. He tied for the U.S. Open Championship in 1923 and 1930. In 1927 he won the first National Chess Federation Championship. In 1928 he was on his way to the World Amateur Championship in The Hague to play the champions of 15 other nations (won by Euwe). He was also on his honeymoon. He was involved in a train wreck that killed 9 persons in his car and his wife’s skull was fractured. Whitaker still played, and took 4th place. In 1950 he won the Southern Championship. He received $100,000 from Charles Lindbergh on a promise to return the Lindbergh baby. It was a scam in which he went to prison for five years. The money was never found. He served several other prison sentences for other scams. He spent 18 months in Alcatraz. As soon as he got out, he traveled to Corpus Christ, Texas to participate in the US Open Chess Championship, which he almost won. He learned chess at the age of 14 from his father. He was a member of the Log Cabin Chess Club, playing Board 1 (Bobby Fischer played Board 2). He won over 200 tournaments in his lifetime and very seldom did he accept any cash prizes.

Edwards – Whitaker, Pennsylvania 1921
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 d4 4.e3 Bb4+ 5.Bd2 dxe3 6.Qa4+ Nc6 7.Bxb4 exf2+ 8.Kxf2 Qh4+ 9.g3 Qd4+ 10.Kg2 Qxb2+ 0-1

White, John G. (1845-1928)

Founder and donor of the world's largest chess library located in Cleveland, Ohio. There are over 100,000 volumes of chess books and magazines in the collection. He collected chess books for over 60 years and gave his collection of over 12,000 books on chess and checkers to the Cleveland Library.

Whitehead, Jay (1961- )

International Master (1986). In 1977 he placed second at the World Under-17 Championship (formerly the Cadet Championship), ahead of Garry Kasparov.

Fedorowicz – J. Whitehead, Lone Pine 1977
1.Nf3 d6 2.c4 c5 3.b3 Nf6 4.g3 g6 5.Bb2 Bg7 6.Bg2 Nc6 7.O-O O-O 8.e3 Bf5 9.d3 Qd7 10.Re1 Rab8 11.Nc3 a6 12.d4 cxd4 13.exd4 Nb4 14.Re2 Rab8 15.Ba3 b5 16.Nh4 b4 17.Nxf5 Qxf5 18.Ne4 Nxe4 19.Qxd3 Nc3 0-1

Whitehead, Paul (1960- )

Co-winner (with David Strauss) of the 1978 American Open.

Whiteley, Andrew (1947- )

British master. He was European Junior Champion in 1965-66.

Whiteley – Dunn, London 1989
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ne4 4.a3 Qh4 5.Be3 Bc5 6.Qd3?? Nxf2 0-1

Whiteman, Paul (1891-1967)

Known as the King of Jazz and leader of dance and concert orchestras. He was the creator of "symphonic jazz" for popular audiences. He was a fanatic chess player along with the rest of his orchestra who played during intermissions.

Wibe, Terje (1947- )

Norwegian International Master (1977). Correspondence International Master (1982). He was Norwegian Champion in 1971. He played on the Norwegian chess Olympiad team in 1966, 1968, 1970, 1972, and 1978 (board 1).

Wilder, Michael (1962- )

Chess master at 13 years and 6 months (Bobby Fischer was a U.S. master at 13 years and 5 months), after tying for 1st place in the Greater New York Open on Feb 29, 1976. He learned chess from his father at the age of 6. He won the U. S. Championship in 1988.

Williams, Arthur Howard (1950- )

Winner of the Welsh championship 17 times. He finished 1st in the 1974 British Championship, but lost the play-off.

Williams, Elijah (1810-1854)

English chess master who came in 3rd at the London International in 1851. In 1852 he published Horae Divanianae (Hours of the Divan), a book of 150 chess games played at Simpson’ Divan. It included the “Immortal Game” between Anderssen and Kieseritzky. He was President of the Bristol Chess Club and conducted a chess column in the Bath and Cheltenham Gazette and the Field. His occupation was an apothecary (druggist), but he gave this career up for chess. He died in the London cholera epidemic of 1854 at the age of 44.

Wilson, Thomas Bright (1843-1915)

Inventor of the chess clock (stop clock), with the advice of Henry Blackburne. He lived in Manchester England and was secretary of the Manchester Chess Club. The first major tournament to use the chess clock was London, 1883 (won by Zukertort). It consisted of two balanced clocks on a seesaw beam so that when one was tilted, it stopped and the other started.

Winants, Luc (1963- )

Grandmaster from Belgium. His FIDE rating is 2535. He played board 1 for Belgium in the 2004 Chess Olympiad in Calvia.

Winawer, Simon (1838-1920)

Polish master from Warsaw. He finished 2nd at Paris 1867, behind Kolisch. He took 1st at Paris 1878, Vienna 1882, and Nuremberg 1883. He was German champion in 1883. The variation 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 is the Winawer variation in the French Defense.

Winter, Edward

Chess archivist, historian and author. Author of Chess Notes and several chess books. John Donaldson considers him the world’s leading chess historian. He lives in Geneva.

Winter, William (1898-1955)

International master (1950). He was a nephew of Sir James Barrie who wrote Peter Pan and two-time British champion (1935 and 1936). He had been an active Communist Party organizer and was once sentenced to 6 months in jail for sedition. Winter became a chess player after his doctor told him to give up politics. In 1919, he was champion at Cambridge University. He was London Champion in 1926, 1928-29, 1932, 1939, and 1947. He probably played the only game in master chess that it would have been more profitable to draw or lose than to win. A draw or loss would have qualified him for special awards to non-prizewinners in the London 1927 tournament, which was in excess of 7 English pounds, more than his 6th place prize. He played in 4 Olympiads for England. He was a chess journalist for the Manchester Guardian and the Daily Worker.

G. Thomas – W. Winter, London 1927
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 c5 5.dxc5 Na6 6.a3 Bxc3+ 7.Qxc3 Nxc5 8.b4 Nce4 9.Qd3 d5 10.cxd5 Nxf2 11.Kxf2 Ng4+ 12.Kg3 Qf6 13.Nf3 Qxa1 14.Bd2 Nf6 15.e4 exd5 16.exd5 O-O 17.Bc3 Qxc3 0-1

Wirthensohn, Heinz (1951- )

Swiss International Master (1977). Swiss champion in 1979 and 1981.

Wisker, John (1846-1884)

British Champion in 1870 (after beating Burn in a play-off) and 1872 (after a play-off with De Vere). From 1872 to 1877, he was the Secretary to the British Chess Association. For awhile, he was editor of the Chess Player’s Chronicle. In 1877 he was told he had tuberculosis (consumption), and he moved to Australia. He died in Melbourne, Austalia in 1884.

Witkowski, Stefan (1931- )

Polish International Master (1977). Polish Champion in 1959. His FIDE rating is 2178.

Wockenfuss, Klaus (1951- )

International master from Germany. He was West German champion in 1976. His FIDE ratingis 2308.

Wojtaszek, Radoslaw (1987- )

Polish grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2591.

Wojtkiewicz, Aleksander (1963-2006)

American Grandmaster. He was Polish-born player.

Wolf, Heinrich (1875-1943)

Austrian master. He was 1st at Vienna 1902, 2nd at Vienna 1905, and 3rd at Vienna 1922 (behind Rubinstein and Tartakower). He retired from active play in 1923. He was killed by the Nazis during World War II.

Wolf, Siegfried (1867-1951)

Austrian champion in 1925. He played on the Austrian chess Olympiad team in 1927, 1928, and 1930.

Wolff, Patrick (1968- )

American Grandmaster (1990) and the 1992 US Chess Champion and the 1995 US Chess Co-Champion. He is a former National High School (1987) champion and US Junior champion (1984).

Wolff – Glliamova, Adelaide 1988
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Bc4 e6 7.Be3 Be7 8.Qe2 a6 9.O-O-O Qc7 10.Bb3 O-O 11.Rhg1 b5 12.g4 Rb8 13.g5 Nd7 14.Qh5 Nxd4 15.Bxd4 b4 16.g6 hxg6 17.Rxg6 Nf6 18.Rxg7+ 1-0

Wood, Baruch Harold (1909-1989)

Owner and editor of the monthly chess magazine Chess, which was founded in 1935. He was the editor for 52 years, after which failing health forced him to sell it to Pergamon Press in 1988. He was a correspondent for the Daily Telegraph and Illustrated London News. He wrote Easy Guide to Chess. He played on the English chess Olympiad team at Buenos Aires in 1939. During World War II, he continued to publish : Chess while serving as director of a chemical research laboratory. In 1945, he was the British Correspondence Champion. In 1948, he took 2nd in the British Championship.

B. Wood – Stokes, England 1964
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 Be7 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nxe4 6.Bxf7+ Kxf7 7.Ne5+ Ke6 8.Nxe4 d5 9.Qg4+ Kxe5 10.d4+ Kxd4 11.c3+ Kc4 12.Qe2 mate 1-0

B. Wood – Znosko-Borovsky, Netherlands 1947
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Nf3 Bg7 5.Qb3 c6 6.cxd5 Nxd5 7.e4 Nb6 8.Be3 O-O 9.Rd1 Be6 10.Qc2 Bc4 11.h4 Bxf1 12.Kxf1 N8d7 13.h5 Nc4 14.Bc1 e5 15.hxg6 hxg6 16.Qd3 Ncb6 17.Nxe5 Nxe5 18.Qh3 f5 19.dxe5 Qc8 20.Qh7+ Kf7 21.Rd6 Rg8 22.Bh6 Nd7 23.e6+ Ke7 24.Rxd7+ Kxe6 25.Rxg7 1-0

Wood, Gabriel (1903-1983)

London champion in 1945. British Correspondence Champion in 1946 and 1948.

Women and chess

The first mention of a woman chess player comes from an Islamic correspondence between Harun ar Rashid and Nicephorus in 802 A.D. Harun wrote that he purchased a slave girl noted for her skill at

chess. The first women's tournament was organized by the Sussex Chess Association in 1884. A chess club for lady players lasted in New York from 1894 to 1949. The First American Women’s Chess Congress was held in New York in 1906.

Women with the Men’s Grandmaster Title

The women with the men’s GM title include Nona Gaprindashvili, Maia Chiburdanidze, Judit Polgar, Xie Jun, Zsuzsa Polgar, Pia Cramling, Zhy Chen, Antoaneta Stefanova, Humpy Koneru, Alexandra Kosteniuk, and Zhaoqin Peng.

World Chess Champions


Jubair, Sa'id bin 0700-0714

al-Kufi, Jabir 0818

Khata'i, Rabrab 0818

Na'am, Abu'n 0818

ar-Rumi, al-Aldi 0835-0848

al-Razi 0848

al-Mawardi 0900-0905

as-Suli, Abu Bakr 0905-940

al-Lajal, Abu'l-Faraj 0940-0970

Ahmad, Abu-l-Fath 1100

at-Tabrizi, Ala'Addin 1390


Lopez, Ruy 1560-1575

Cutri, Giovanni Leonardo 1575-1587

Boi, Paolo 1587-1598

Salvio, Alessandro 1598-1621

Greco, Gioacchino 1621-1634

Selenus, Gustavus 1634-1666

de Kermeur, Legall 1730-1747

Philidor, Francois 1747-1795

Deschapelles, Alexandre 1798-1824

Bourdonnais, Louis de la 1824-1840

Staunton, Howard 1843-1851

Anderssen, Adolf 1851-1858

Morphy, Paul 1858-1859

Anderssen, Adolf 1859-1866

Steinitz, William 1866-1886 beat Anderssen, Zukertort


Steinitz, William 1886-1894 beat Zukertort, Tchigorin, Ginsberg

Lasker, Emanuel 1894-1921 beat Steinitz, Marshall, Tarrasch, Janowski, Schlechter

Capablanca, Jose 1921-1927 beat Lasker

Alekhine, Alexander 1927-1935 beat Capablanca, Bogoljubov

Euwe, Max 1935-1937 beat Alekhine

Alekhine, Alexander 1937-1946 beat Euwe


Botvinnik, Mikhail 1948-1957 beat Bronstein, Smyslov

Smyslov, Vassily 1957-1958 beat Botvinnik

Botvinnik, Mikhail 1958-1960 beat Smyslov

Tal, Mikhail 1960-1961 beat Botvinnik

Botvinnik, Mikhail 1961-1963 beat Tal

Petrosian, Tigran 1963-1969 beat Botvinnik

Spassky, Boris 1969-1972 beat Petrosian

Fischer, Bobby 1972-1975 beat Spassky; forfeited title in 1975

Karpov, Anatoly 1975-1985 beat Korchnoi, Kasparov

Kasparov, Garry 1985-1993 beat Karpov; split to PCA in 1993

Karpov, Anatoly 1993-1998 beat Timman (1993) , Kamsky (1996), Anand (1998)

Khalifman, Alexander 1999-2000 won the FIDE tournament in Las Vegas, defeating Akopian

Anand, Vishy 2000-2002 won the knockout match, defeating Shirov, Adams, Khalifman

Ponomariov, R. 2002-2004 won the knockout match, defeating Ivanchuk, Svidler, Bareev

Kasimdzhanov 2004 won the knockout match over Adams, Topalov, Grischuk

Topalov 2004 win 8-player tournament is San Luis, Argentina


Vera Menchik 1923-1944

Ludmila Rudenko 1949-1953

Elisaveta Bikova 1953-1956

Olga Rubstova 1956-1958

Elisaveta Bikova 1958-1962

Nona Gaprindashvili 1962-1978

Maya Chiburdanidze 1978-1991

Xie Jun 1991-1996

Zsuzsa Polgar 1996-1999

Xie Jun 1999-2001

Zhu Chen 2001-2004

Antoaneta Stefanova 2004-


Kasparov, Garry 1993-2000 beat Anand (1995)


Kramnik 2000 beat Kasparov


Kramnik 2004 beat Leko

World Championship Matches Champion Challenger + = – Date
1. Steinitz Zukertort 10 05 05 1886 NY, St Louis, New Orleans

2. Steinitz Tchigorin 10 01 06 1889 Havana

3. Steinitz Gunsberg 06 09 04 1890/1 New York

4. Steinitz Tchigorin 10 05 08 1892 Havana

5. Steinitz Lasker 05 04 10 1894 NY, Philadelphia, Montreal

6. Lasker Steinitz 10 05 02 1896/7 Moscow

7. Lasker Marshall 08 07 00 1907 NY, Philadelphia, Memphis,

Chicago, Baltimore

8. Lasker Tarrasch 08 05 03 1908 Dusseldorf, Munich

9. Lasker Schlechter 01 08 01 1910 Vienna, Berlin

10. Lasker Janowski 08 03 00 1910 Berlin

11. Lasker Capablanca 00 10 04 1921 Havana

12. Capablanca Alekhine 03 25 06 1927 Buenos Aires

13. Alekhine Bogoljubov 11 09 05 1929 Germany, Holland

14. Alekhine Bogoljubov 08 15 03 1934 Germany

15. Alekhine Euwe 08 13 09 1935 Holland

16. Euwe Alekhine 04 11 10 1937 Holland

MATCH-TOURNAMENT BOTVINNIK 10 8 2 1948 The Hague, Moscow

17. Botvinnik Bronstein 05 14 05 1951 Moscow

18. Botvinnik Smyslov 07 10 07 1954 Moscow

19. Botvinnik Smyslov 03 13 06 1957 Moscow

20. Smyslov Botvinnik 05 11 07 1958 Moscow

21. Botvinnik Tal 02 13 06 1960 Moscow

22. Tal Botvinnik 05 06 10 1961 Moscow

23. Botvinnik Petrosian 02 15 05 1963 Moscow

24. Petrosian Spassky 04 17 03 1966 Moscow

25. Petrosian Spassky 04 13 06 1969 Moscow

26. Spassky Fischer 03 11 07 1972 Reykjavik


27. Karpov Kortchnoi 06 21 05 1978 Baguio City

28. Karpov Kortchnoi 06 10 02 1981 Merano

29. Karpov Kasparov 05 40 03 1984/5 Moscow

30. Karpov Kasparov 03 16 05 1985 Moscow

31. Kasparov Karpov 05 15 04 1986 London, Leningrad

32. Kasparov Karpov 04 16 04 1987 Seville

33. Kasparov Karpov 04 17 03 1990 New York, Lyon


34. Karpov Kamsky 06 09 03 1996 Elista, Russia

35. Karpov Anand 04 02 02 1998 Lausanne, Switzerland

36. Khalifman Akopian 02 03 01 1999 Las Vegas knockout

37. Anand Shirov 03 01 00 2000 Tehran knockout

38. Ponomariov Ivanchuk 02 05 00 2002 Moscow knockout

39. Kasimdzhanov Adams 03 03 01 2004 Tripoli knockout

World Championship Records

Fewest draws – 1 (Steinitz-Chigorin, 1889, last game).

Greatest comeback – Steinitz overcame a 1-4 deficit against Zukertort to win in 1886.

Last to end in checkmate – 1886.

Last to have a game lost on time – 1958.

Last to end in stalemate – 1978.

Longest game – 124 moves (Korchnoi-Karpov, 1978).

Longest match – 48 games (Karpov-Kasparov, 1984-85).

Most draws in one match – 40 (Karpov-Kasparov).

Most career games – 157 (Botvinnik, who won 36, lost 39, drew 82).

Most money – $500,000 (Korchnoi-Karpov, Buganio).

Most number of matches – 8 (Lasker in eight matches).

Most wins in one match – 11 (Alekhine-Bogojubov, 1929).

Most career wins – 52 (Lasker).

Shortest win – 19 moves (Steinitz-Zukertort, 1872).

Most consecutive draws – 17 (Karpov-Kasparov).

Most number of moves – 1647 (Karpov-Kasparov).

Most days – 159 (Karpov-Kasparov).

The largest age discrepancy of any world championship play is 32 years when Emanuel Lasker, 26, played Steinitz, 58.

The youngest world champion – Gary Kasparov at 22.

Oldest – Wilhelm Steintiz who defeated Chigorin at 56.

Most active – Karpov, who played in 32 individual tournaments and 8 team tournaments. We won or tied for first in 26 of those tournaments. That is twice as many as the second most active player, Alekhine, who played in 16 tournaments during his world championship reign.

Most tournament games while titleholder – Karpov, with 454 games. That compares to second place Petrosian's 265 games.

World Open

The 1983 World Open in New York saw a 5-way tie: Spraggett, Quinteros, Shirazi, Bass, and Zaltsman. Not one was a single U.S. born winner. The first World Open was at the McAlpin hotel in New York in 1973 and won by Walter Browne. The 2005 World Open was won by Kamil Magesh.

World War II

Prominent chess players lost in World War II include Isaak Appel, Zoltan Balla, Ilyin Belavenets (three-time Moscow champion), Alexander Chistyakov, H. Friedman, Achilles Frydman, Ilyin-Genevsky, Kornel Havasi, Klaus Junge, J. Kolski, Kremer, Evgeni Kubbel, Leonid Kubbel, Lowek, Olga Menchik, Vera Menchik, Vladimir Petrov , Przepiorka, Rabinovich , Vsevolod Rauzer, Regedzinski, Nikolai Riumin (three-time Moscow champion), Leon Szwarcman (died in Auschwitz), A. Steiner, Szpiro, Karel Treybal, Troitzky , Votruba, S. Weinstein (President of the Leningrad chess club and a trainer of Botvinnik), Henrich Wolf (Austrian master), and Zalkand.

World Youth Team Championship

The first official FIDE world championship event ever held in the United States was the World Youth Team Championship held in Chicago in 1983.

Wyller, Robert

In 1948 Robert Wyller of Glendale, California was playing 1001 correspondence games at once.

Wyvill, Marmaduke (1814-1896)

Strong English player of the 19th century. He took 2nd place at the London 1851 knockout tournament, behind Adolf Anderssen (2 wins, 4 losses, 1 draw). He was elected member of Parliament for Richmond, North Yorkshire in 1847. He remained a member of Parliament until 1868. He was the first English opening specialist, almost always playing 1.c4 on his first move.

Xie Jun (1970- )

Chinese grandmaster player (born in Beijing) who defeated Maya Chiburdanidze (Women’s World chess champion since 1978) for the Women's World Championship title in 1991 after a 15 game match in Manila. She became the 7th Women's World Champion and the first from Asi She was the first player outside the Soviet Union to become world women’s champion. She defended her title in 1993 against Nana Ioseliani. She lost her title to Zsuzsa Polgar in 1996. She became Women’s World Chess Champion again from 1999 to 2000 when she defeated Alisa Galliamova in 1999 and Qin Kanying in 2000. Her name is pronounced ‘Chay Yoon.’ She is pursuing her doctorate in psychology.

Xie Xiaxun (1888-1987)

Winner of the first Chinese chess tournament in 1918. He credited his longevity to Chinese chess (xiangqi). He was vice chairman of the Shanghai Chess Association and is credited for bringing western chess to China.

Xu Jun (1962- )

Chinese grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2582.

Yagupov, Igor (1965- )

Russian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2512.

Yakovich, Yuri (1962- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2560. He is the trainer for Alexandra Kosteniuk.

Yandemirov, Valeri (1963- )

Russian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2515.

Yanofsky, Daniel Abraham (1925-2000)

Polish born Canadian lawyer and Grandmaster (1964) who was the first Grandmaster in the British Commonwealth. He learned to play chess at 8 years old. He came to Canada in 1926. In 1939 he was selected to play for Canada as 2nd board at the Buenos Aires Olympiad when only 14 years old. He won the Canadian championship 8 times (from 1941 to 1965), won the US Open in 1942, and the British Championship in 1953. He took 1st at Hastings in 1953. He had been the mayor of a suburb of Winnipeg. He edited Canadian Chess Chat for several years.

Yanofsky – Therein, Quebec 1947
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.Nf3 Ngf6 6.Nxf6+ Nxf6 7.Bd3 Be7 8.O-O O-O 9.Ne5 c5 10.dxc5 Bxc5 11.Qe2 b6 12.Bg5 Bb7 13.Rad1 Qe7 14.Nd7 Rfd8 15.Bxf6 gxf6 16.Qg4+ Kh8 17.Qh4 f5 18.Nf6 Kg7 19.Qg5+ 1-0

Yates, Frederick (1884-1932)

Six-time British champion (1913, 1914, 1921, 1926, 1928, and 1931). In 1911, he tied for 1st in the British championship, but lost the play-off to Atkins. He took 1st place at Hastings in 1920/21. He was trained as an accountant, but abandoned this career in favor of chess and journalism. He was the chess correspondent of the Manchester Guardian. A leak from a faulty gas pipe killed him while he was asleep. He had just finished a 16 game simultaneous exhibition in London.

Yates – Marin, Hamburg 1930
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Be7 5.e5 Ne4 6.Bxe7 Qxe7 7.Bd3 Nxc3 8.bxc3 c5 9.Qg4 O-O 10.Nf3 c4 11.Bxh7+ 1-0

Yates – Rubinstein, Budapest 1926
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.Qe2 b5 6.Bb3 Bc5 7.c3 O-O 8.O-O d6 9.Rd1 Qe7 10.d4 Bb6 11.Bg5 Nd8 12.Nh4 Ne6?! (12…exd4) 13.Nf5 Qe8? (13…Qd8) 14.Bxf6 gxf6 15.Bxe6 (15…fxe6 16.Qg4+ Qg6 17.Ne7+) 1-0

Marotti – Yates, London 1922
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.f4 d5 4.fxe5 Nxe4 5.Nf3 Be7 6.Qe2 Nc5 7.d3 O-O 8.Bd2 Nc6 9.O-O-O Bg4 10.h3 Bh5 11.g4 Bg6 12.Qh2 d4 13.Nb1 Qd5 14.c4 Qxf3 15.Bf4 Nb4 16.Bd2 Ncxd3+ 17.Bxd3 Nxd3+ 0-1

Ye, Jiangchuan (1960- )

Grandmaster from China. His FIDE rating is 2648.

Ye, Rongguang (1963- )

Grandmaster from China. His FIDE rating is 2472.

Yegiazarian, Arsen (1970- )

Grandmaster from Armenia. His FIDE rating is 2537. He played on the Armenian chess Olympiad team in 1994 and 1996 (board 1).

Yeltsin, Boris (1931- )

Former Russian President who founded the Sverdlovsk Chess Club in the 1950s.

Yemelin, Vasilij (1976- )

Grandmaster from Russia. His FIDE rating is 2530.

Yermolinsky, Alex (1958- )

US Grandmaster (1992). US Champion in 1993 and 1996. He won the U.S. Open in 1995 (Concord, CA) and 1997 (Orlando). He has represented the USA in four chess Olympiads.

Moskalenko – Yermolinsky, Odessa 1981
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.c4 Bg7 4.Nc3 d5 5.Qb3 dxc4 6.Qxc4 O-O 7.e4 a6 8.h4 b5 9.Qb3 c5 10.e5 Ng4 11.Qd5 cxd4 12.Qxa8 dxc3 13.Qxb8 cxb2 14.Bxb2 Qa5+ 15.Nd2 Nxf2 0-1


A yogurt brought to Karpov during the world championship match with Korchnoi brought a protest. A suitable choice of color or flavor could have conveyed advice.

Young, Franklin (1857-1931)

The most prolific American chess writer of the 19th century.

Youngest Grandmasters

Sergey Karjakin – 12 years, 7 months, 0 days

Magnus Carlsen – 13 years, 3 months, 27 days

Bu Xiangzhi – 13 years, 10 months, 13 days

Teimour Radjabov – 14 years, 14 days

Ruslan Ponomariov – 14 years, 17 days

Etienne Bacrot – 14 years, 2 months

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave – 14 years, 4 months

Peter Leko – 14 years, 4 months, 22 days

Yuri Kuzubov – 14 years, 7 months, 12 days

Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son – 14 years, 10 months

Hikaru Nakamura – 15 years, 2 months, 19 dyas

Koneru Humpy – 15 years, 4 months, 28 days

Judit Polgar – 15 years, 4 months, 28 days

Bobby Fischer – 15 years, 6 months, 1 day

Youngest USCF Masters

Nakamura, Hikaru (1987- ) – 10 years, 79 days

Vinay Bhat (1984- ) – 10 years, 5 months

Jordy Mont-Reynaud (1983- ) – 10 years, 6 months

Sturt Rachels (1969- ) – 11 years, 10 months

Ilya Gurevich (1972- ) – 12 years, 3 months

John Jarecki (1969- ) – 12 years, 6 months

Jon Litvinchuk (1967- ) – 12 years, 7 months

John Viloria (1978- ) – 12 years, 12 months

Gata Kamsky (1974- ) – 13 years, 2 months

Joel Benjamin (1964- ) – 13 years, 3 months

Bobby Fischer (1943- ) – 13 years, 5 months

Yrjola, Jouni (1959- )

Grandmaster from Finland. His FIDE rating is 2399.

Yudasin, Leonid (1959- )

Grandmaster now living in Israel. His FIDE rating is 2540.

Yudovich, Mikhail (1911-1987)

Soviet International Master (1950) and Correspondence Grandmaster (1972). He took 3rd place in the 1931 USSR championship. He was USSR Correspondence Champion in 1966.

Fine – Yudovich, Moscow 1937
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 c5 5.Bg5 cxd4 6.Nxd4 e5 7.Ndb5 a6 8.Nxd5 axb5 9.Nxf6+ Qxf6 10.Bxf6 Bb4+ 11.Qd2 Bxd2+ 12.Kxd2 gxf6 0-1

Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro)

In 1271 Svetoslav Surinj beat the Venetian Doge, Peter II, in a chess match and won the right to rule the Dalmatian towns of Yugoslavia. A chessboard appears in the Croation coat of arms. The first Yugoslav championship was held in 1945, and won by Peter Trifunovic. In 1950, Yugoslavia issued its first chess stamp.

Yukhtman, Jacob (1935-1985)

Strong Russian chess player. In 1959, he took 14th place in the USSR championship, defeating Tal ank Kholmov. His games were suppressed in the Soviet Union because he was not a communist.

Yukhtman – Gorodezky, Tiumen 1959
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 c5 4.Qg4 cxd4 5.Nf3 f5 6.Qg3 Nc6 7.Bd3 Nge7 8.O-O Ng6 9.h4 Qc7 10.Re1 Bc5 11.h5 Nf8 12.c3 dxc3 13.Nxc3 h6 14.Bf4 a6 15.Bxf5 d4 16.Ne4 Bb4 17.Nd6+ Kd8 18.Be4 Bxe1 19.Rxe1 Qe7 20.Rc1 Nb4 21.Ng5 Rg8 22.Qa3 1-0

Yusupov, Artur (1960- )

Russian Grandmaster (1980) and trainer who later moved to Germany. In 1990, Yusupov was shot in the stomach and seriously injured by a robber in a burglary attempt in Moscow. He reached the semi-final World Chess Championship in 1986, 1989, and 1992.

Yusupov – Timman, Tilburg 1986
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Bc4 b6 8.Qf3 O-O 9.e5 Ba6 10.Bd5 c6 11.Bb3 Qc7 12.h4 c5 13.h5 cxd4 14.cxd4 gxh5 15.Rxh5 Bb7 16.Qd3 Rd8 17.Qxh7+ Kf8 18.Ne2 Rxd4 19.Bh6 1-0

Zagorovsky, Vladimir (1925- )

Russian Correspondence Grandmaster (1966) and the 4th Correspondence World Chess Champion (1962-1965). In the 5th World Correspondence Championship, he finished in 4th place. In the 6th World Correspondence Championship, he finished 2nd. In the 7th World Correspondence Championship, he finished 3rd. In the 8th World Correspondence Championship, he tied for 1st place with Sloth from Denmark. In the 11th World Correspondence Championship, he finished 5th. He holds the record for the most appearances (6) in World Correspondence Chess Championships. He was Moscow champion in 1952.

Zagorovsky – Nielsen, Correspondence 1965
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Bc5 4.c3 f5 5.exf5 e4 6.d4 exf3 7.dxc5 Qe7+ 8.Be3 fxg2 9.Rg1 Nf6 10.Qf3 d5 11.cxd6 Qxd6 12.Nd2 Bd7 13.Qxg2 Qe5 14.Bxc6 bxc6 15.Qxg7 O-O-O 16.O-O-O Bxf5 17.Bd4 Qd5 18.Qxf6 Rhf8 19.Qe7 Rf7 20.Qa3 h6 21.Qa6+ 1-0

Zagrebelny, Sergey

Grandmaster from Uzbekistan. His FIDE rating is 2510.

Zaiatz (nee Zayac), Elena (1969- )

Woman Grandmaster from Russia. Her FIDE rating is 2422.

Zaichik, Gennadi (1957- )

Grandmaster (1984) from Soiviet Georgia now living in the United States. His FIDE rating is 2504. He played for Georgia in the chess Olympiad in 1992, 1994, and 1996.

Zaitsev, Alexander (1935-1971)

Soviet Grandmaster (1967) who died at the age of 36 of a blood clot after having a leg lengthened. He won the 36th USSR Championship in 1969. The Ziatsev variation of the Ruy Lopez (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 O-O 9.h3 Bb7) is named after him.

Gaiduk – A. Zaitsev, Vladivostok 1958
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Nf3 c5 5.cxd5 cxd4 6.Qa4+ Nbd7 7.Qxd4 Bc5 8.Qd1 exd5 9.Nxd5 Nxd5 10.Qxd5 Qa5+ 11.Kd1 Nf6 12.Qe5+ Be6 13.e3 Ng4 14.Qxg7 O-O-O+ 15.Bd2 Bb4 16.Rc1+ Kb8 17.Rc2 Rhg8 0-1

Zaitsev, Igor (1938- )

Russian grandmaster (1976). In 1969 he won the Moscow championship. His FIDE rating is 2419.

Apartsev – I. Zaitsev, Moscow 1963
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Ng5 Bc5 5.Nxf7 Bxf2+ 6.Kf1 Qe7 7.Nxh8 d5 8.Qf3 Bh4 9.Nxd5 Nd4 10.Qa3 Nxd5 11.Qxe7+ Kxe7 12.exd5 Bh3 13.Nc3 Rf8+ 14.Kg1 Rf2 15.d3 Rxg2+ 16.Kf1 Rg1+ 17.Kxg1 Nf3 mate 0-1

Zaitseva, Ludmila (1956- )

Russian Woman Grandmaster. Her FIDE rating is 2352.

Zaja, Ivan (1965- )

Croatian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2496.

Zak, Vladimir (1913-1994)

Principal chess trainer of Leningrad (St. Petersburg) players since 1958. He was the first chess trainer of Boris Spassky (beginning in 1946) and Korchnoi.

Zakharevich, Igor (1963- )

Russian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2499.

Zaltsman, Vitaly (1941- )

American International Master. His FIDE rating is 2445. In 1980, he tied for 6th-7th in the US Championship. In 1983, he tied for 1st in the World Open in Philadelphia. In 1991, he tied for 1st in the Manhattan Chess Club Championship.

Zambrana, Oswaldo (1981- )

Bolivian International Master (2004). His FIDE rating is 2421. He is Bolivia’s best chess player. He played on the Bolivian chess Olympiad team in 1998, 2000, 2002, and 2004.

Zapata, Alonso (1958- )

Columbia's first grandmaster (1984). His FIDE rating is 2509. He now resides in Puerto Rico. He played on the Columbian chess Olympiad team 11 times.

Zapata – Anand, Biel 1988
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.Nc3 Bf5 6.Qe2 1-0

Zarnicki, Pablo (1972- )

Grandmaster (1994) from Argentina who won the 1992 World Junior Chess Championship. In 2004 he was disqualified from a Dos Hermanas Internet Chess Club (ICC) tournament, accused of cheating by using a computer, which he denied.

Zatonskih, Anna(1978-)

Woman grandmaster (1999). In 2001 and 2002, she was Women’s Champion of the Ukraine. In 2006, she became U.S. Women’s Champion.

Zatulovskaya, Tatiana (1935- )

International Woman Master in 1961 and woman Grandmaster in 1976. She was USSR women’s champion in 1960, 1962, and 1963. In 1967, she took 2nd in the Women’s Candidates tournament. In 1971, she won the first Women’s Interzonal tournament, held in Ohrid.

Zelcic, Robert (1965- )

Grandmaster from Croatia. His FIDE rating is 1965.

Zhao, Xue (1985- )

Woman Grandmaster. In 2002, she won the World Junior Championship for Girls, held in Goa, India. Her FIDE rating is 2470.

Zita, Frantisek (1909-1977)

Czech International Master (1950). Czech champion in 1943. He played on the Czechoslovakia chess Olympiad team in 1937, 1939, 1952, and 1954.

Zlochevsky, Alexander

Russian grandmaster.

Znosko-Borovsky, Eugene (1884-1954)

Russian player of International Master strength and chess author. He fought and was wounded in both the 1905 Russo-Japanese war and World War I. He also fought for the White forces during the Russian revolution and was evacuated to France. In 1908, he took 3rd place in the All-Russia tournament if Lodz. He was the first to write about the middle-game in chess. His occupation was a music and drama critic, and he was an expert on Russian theater.

Mansfield – Znosko-Borovsky, Tenby 1928
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O Bc5 6.c3 Ba7 7.d4 Nxe4 8.d5 Ne7 9.Nxe5 O-O 10.Bc2 d6 11.Nxf7 Nxf2 12.Bxh7+ Kxh7 13.Qh5+ Kg8 0-1

Zubarev, Alexander (1979- )

Grandmaster from the Ukraine. His FIDE rating is 2521.

Zubarev, Nikolai (1894-1951)

Russian International Master (1950) and International Judge (1951). Moscow champion in 1920, 1927, and 1930.

Zuckerman, Bernard (1943- )

International Master who was playing in the 1975 Cleveland International when a spectator became loud. Zuckerman (Zook the Book) told him to shut up. When that didn't work, he hurled a captured bishop at the spectator. Zuckerman was reprimanded for his "unsportsmanlike" conduct. He and Bobby Fischer have been good friends. In 1964 he competed in the 11th Student Olympiad in Cracow Poland (with Bill Lombardy, Raymond Weinstein, Charles Kalme, Mike Valvo, and Mitchell Sweig). The Americans finished in 4th place. He took 4th place in the 1965/66 US Championship. His FIDE rating is 2455.


A German word meaning obligation to move. The term is used for a position in which whoever has the move would obtain a worse result than if it were the opponent’s turn to play. The term was first used in a German chess magazine in 1858.

Zuidema, Coenraad (1942- )

Dutch International Master (1964). He took 1st in the Dutch championship in 1965 (lost the play-off to Prins), 1970 (lost the play-off to Scholl), 1972, and 1973 (lost the play-off to Sosonko). He won the first Junior European Champion in 1962-63. He played in four Olympiad tournaments (1964, 1966, 1970, 1972) for the Netherlands. His FIDE rating is 2450.

Zukertort, Johannes (1842-1888)

Chess master, physician, pianist, magazine editor, music critic, linguist, swordsman and marksman. He was fluent in English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Russian, Sanskrit, Arabic, Turkish, Danish, and Polish. He was decorated for gallantry 9 times in three Prussian wars with Denmark, Austria, and France and was once left for dead. He could play 16 chess games blindfolded. He edited a political magazine and several chess magazines. He was one of the best dominoes and whist players in the world. He was a leading spokesman for prison reform. He studied chemistry, physiology, philology, and theology with distinction. In 1878 he won a major tournament in Paris. The first place prize consisted of a Sevres vase, worth over 5,000 francs, and was given to him by the President of France. He sold it three days later in a pawn shop for about half the value. He had a stroke at Simpson's chess club while playing in a chess tournament (he was in 1st place) and died the next day, at the age of 46. He was to play Blackburne and Bird in the final rounds for the championship.

Kornfeld – Zukertort, Posen 1865
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Bc4 d5 4.Bxd5 Nf6 5.Nc3 Bb4 6.Nge2 c6 7.Bb3 Bg4 8.d3 Nxe4 9.dxe4 Qh4+ 10.Kf1 f3 11.gxf3 Bh3+ 12.Kg1 Bc5+ 13.Nd4 Bxd4+ 14.Qxd4 Qe1 mate 0-1

Zurich Chess Club

Oldest chess club in Europe, founded in 1809.

Zvjaginsev, Vadim (1976- )

Russian Grandmaster. His FIDE rating is 2659.

Zvorykina, Kira (1919- )

Woman grandmaster (1977) from Russia who moved to Bulgaria. She took 1st in 5 Soviet Women championships in 1951, 1953, 1956, 1957 (lost the play-off to Borisenko), and 1958 (lost the play-off to Volpert). She lived in Minsk where she was an engineer and taught chess. In 1959, she won the Women’s Candidates tournament and played for the world women’s championship. In 1959 she lost to Bykova for the title in Moscow, winning 2, losing 6, and drawing 5. Her current FIDE rating is 2079.

Zwaig, Arne (1947- )

Norwegian International Master (1975). He won the Norwegian Championship in 1964 and 1969. He played on the Norwegian chess Olypiad team in 1962, 1964, 1966, 1968, 1972, and 1974. His FIDE rating is 2439.

Zweig, Stefan (1881-1942)

Austrian biographer and novelist. He committed suicide in Brazil in 1942 out of a sense of loneliness. His last novel, The Royal Game, was published posthumously in the March 1944 issue of Woman’s Home Companion. Yugoslav idiot-savant (Mirko Czentovic) who becomes chess champion of the world. He plays a Dr. B (Viennese lawyer) who recently escaped from a prison hospital after being tortured by the Nazis. Dr. B studied chess in prison to prevent going insane.