Checkmate: In chess and in the life.

Antonio Ventura Gude

Artículo escrito por: Antonio Ventura Gude , publicado: Friday, July 15th, 2016
Categorias: Gude's Corner

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Checkmate: Sam Loyd the magician…

One of the problems of help that ends in a checkmate, is one in which the side that is destined to become a victim collaborates with its executioner. It’s needed to make the best moves to be punished, in an exercise of masochism.

This example, from the initial position, is a creation of the unrivalled Samuel Loyd. An unbeatable master in problems of fantasy.

In this familiar position the blacks have to do a checkmate in four moves. The added condition (or challenge) is that all black moves must be made by pawns.

tablero inicial

(SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM OF SAM LOYD: 1.f3 e5 2.Kf2 h5 3 Kg3 h4+ 4.Kg4 d6++ checkmate)

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Red Wolf plays…

Karl Marx (1818-1883), the prominent inventor of scientific socialism, was a great chess amateur and it seems like he had dedicated long evenings for its practice. According to Liebknecht, Marx didn’t like to lose and would become furious when he was beaten. During the exile, he was known as the ‘red wolf’.

In one of his trips to Berlin, Marx contacted Neumann, co-publisher with Anderssen of ‘Neue Berliner Schachzeitung’, where apparently both played some friendly games together. The diagram shows the finishing of one of the games, in which Marx had the winning black pieces as: 1…Qf2+! 2.Rxf2 gxf2+ and checkmate to the next in g3. However, it is unlikely that a chess player with the skills of Neumann could reach such a position before a relatively weak amateur. Some sources pointed out that he would be someone called “G.R. Neumann”, namely another man, and if so, the mystery would have been resolved.

Karl Marx

A doubtful sense of humor…

The grandmaster Efim Bogoljubov, who had disputed two matches for the world title with Alekhine, had among his colleagues the reputation of having the questionable gift of inappropriateness, being also an addict to bad humor. As described by the great Viennese commentator, Hans Kmoch, “Bogoljubov is like a bear. If he wants to shoo a fly, he kills in a single hit – both the fly and the tamer.”

In a famous anecdote of his game against Tarrasch, being the last one for him before he died a few days later. Without thinking twice, when relating about his victory against Tarrasch, Bogoljubov titled it “The game that killed Dr. Tarrasch (checkmate)”


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Checkmate: In chess and in the life.
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Acerca del autor: Antonio Ventura Gude

Antonio Ventura GudeEducator, translater and writer of a huge number of books and prestigious chess magazines.


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