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D Hermann vs Rezso Charousek
Casual game (1896), Kassa (now Kosice/Kaschau) AUH, Nov-04
Four Knights Game: Italian Variation (C46)  ·  0-1



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Given 22 times; par: 35 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Sep-05-03  Qian: a very interesting combo.
22. Kxh2 is no good because of the discovered queen attack 23. Qxf1 or Rxf1 is no good because of the mate at 23...Bh3+ 24. Kg2, Qh2# 24. Qxe2 is no good because of 24... Bh3+ 25. Kg1, Qh2+ 26. Kf1, Qh1#

I think that is it.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MichaelJHuman: Now I want to find a game with 4.d4. Be cool if you could search on specific moves such as that.
Sep-05-03  uponthehill: 21. ... Bf1 is not also the winning move?
Sep-05-03  Giuoco Piano Man: I had Bf1 as well and if...22Qxf1 then black plays Qh2# and if 22Kxf1 then Q-h1#? I am missing something?
Sep-05-03  rodolpheb: <Giuoco Piano Man> yes, you're missing 23.Rg1 21...Bf1 22.Kxf1 Qh1+ 23.Rg1
Sep-05-03  Hoozits: If white would have played 23. Qe1, Be2, would 24. Rg2 answer white's threats?
Sep-05-03  Fulkrum: If 23. Qxf1 Bg3+ 24. Kg1 or g2 and black checkmates on h2.
Sep-05-03  patzer2: <MichaelJHuman/Shadout Mapes> Tarrasch's view of 4. Ng5 was that it was a duffers move. While I don't fully agree with that assessment, and have played both moves, I prefer 4. d4. This is because 4. Ng5 allows black a lot of sharp counterplay and open lines, while 4. d4 restricts black's tactical opportunities a lot more and holds the white initiative longer. I think you will find white has a better winning percentage at the master level with 4. d4. In current practice, most modern GMs avoid the two knights altogether by playing 3. Bg5 entering the Ruy Lopez or 3. d4 going into the Scotch.

Try this search from for a list of games with 4. d4. I think you will find it has the position search feature you are looking for and it's free:

Note: You will need to make the initial opening moves on the Java chess board, then select the year (historical) range(games before or after 1991), and then click on "search games."

Sep-05-03  patzer2: <> Thanks for a very entertaining and instructive game for today's chess problem.

Although 21...Bh2+! initiates the winning combination, 23...Be2! is the subtlety that makes it work. Of course, one move earlier after 22...Bf1, white could not get away with 23. Qxf1 taking the bishop. For after 23...Bg3+ 24. Qh3 [24. Kg1 Qh2#] Qxh3+ 25. Kg1 Bh2+ 26. Kg1 Bf4+ white drops the queen and the exchange with no compensation.

So white might, as in the game, try to survive by playing 23. Qd1 or 23. Qe1, and hope for a blunder on black's part such as 23...Bg3+?? 24. Kg1 Qh2+ 25. Kxf1.

Of course after 23...Be2!, black wins in all variations:

If 24. Qxe2, then 24...Bg3+ 25. Kg1 Qh2+ 26. Kf1 Qh1# (notice how the unprotected bishop on g3 stops the white rook from interposing).

If 24. Qe1, then 24...Bg3+ 25.Kg1 Qh2#

Note that 23. Qe1, <Hoozits> suggestion, creates the most complications for black, but still wins. gives the following winning variations after 23. Qe1:

( 4.27 ) 23. ... Be2 24. Rg2 Bxf3 25. Qf1 Bf4+ 26. Kg1 Bxe4 27. dxe4 Bxd2 28. Rd1 Bf4 29. Qc4+ Rf7 30. Qxd4

( 4.13 ) 23. ... Be2 24. Rg2 Bxf3 25. Bg5 Qh3 26. Qf1 Bf4+ 27. Kg1 Bxg2 28. Qxg2

( 3.58 ) 23. ... Be2 24. Rg2 Bxf3 25. Bg5 Bxg2+ 26. Kxg2 Qh5 27. c3 dxc3 28. Qxc3

<Crafty> Do you see anything better for black after 23. Qe1?

Sep-05-03  myratingstinks: uponthehill what if 21 ... bf1 22. rg2 bxg2 23. kxg2 ... What is the black's reply?
Sep-05-03  patzer2: <myratingstinks/unonthehill> After 21...Bf1 22. Kxf1 Qh1+ [23...Qh3+ 24. Rg2 Qh1+ 25. Rg1 Qh3+ 26. Ke1 Qxf3 26. Qxf3 Rxf3 27. Nxd6 cxd6 28. Ke2 Raf8 29. Raf1 ] 23. Rh1 white is up a piece and has survived black's attack with a winning advantage.
Sep-05-03  patzer2: 4. Nc3?! is a dubious opening move, which black correctly punishes with 4...Nxe4! 5. Nxe4 d5. This game is worth saving as a sample of how to deal with this inferior white move when attempting to play the two knights with the black pieces. You might be surprised how many novices play 4. Nc3 and then appear shocked at the standard book reply 4...Nxe4! Of course 4. d4 or even 4. Ng5 were better alternatives.
Sep-05-03  mafergut: The winner didn't get the best of the position. After 22.Kh1, better than 22...Bf1 is 22...Bf4! and if 23.Bxf4, Bf1+ or if 23.Kg1, Bxg5 24.Bxg5, Qh5.

Back to the game, after 22...Bf1, white could have resisted a little better with 23.Rg4.

Sep-07-03  patzer2: <maferqut> If 23. Rg4, then 23...Qxg4, gaining the exchange, wins for black. However, as you suggest, 22...Bf4! also wins and appears to do so a bit more decisively than 22...Bf1.
Premium Chessgames Member
  waddayaplay: There is a game where Fischer himself played 4.Nc3, but he was only 12 at that time. I suppose after that he took up the ruy lopez. Fischer vs D Ames, 1955
Premium Chessgames Member
  waddayaplay: I see Fischer played 4.Bc4 in the three knights instead of 4.Nc3 in the two knights, but it transposes to the same position.
Jul-06-04  Reszoe: If 16.Qd1, Black wins so: 16...Qh6! (Tartakower, menacing 17...Bg4) 17.Kg1 (or 17.Ne4 Bg4! or 17.Nxe5 Bxh3! 18.gxh3 Qxh3+) Rf6 18.Ne4 Rg6 19.Ng3 Bxh3! 20.Nxe5 Bxe5 21.Rxe5 Bxg2! 22.Kxg2 f3+ 23.Qxf3 Nxf3 24.Bxh6 Nxe5, with pawn and exchange.
Aug-14-05  raydot: BTW, I noticed just today in reading up on a few games that feature this opening that <> has added a few interesting comments to the Opening Explorer.

See both Opening Explorer and
Opening Explorer

Of course, but the time you've seen this you've certainly seen that...but anyway, I'm still impressed. Way to go <!>

Great feature, and much appreciated!

Apr-23-07  Ruy Lopez: I saw this in a Chess Life magazine article on Charousek along with his KGD game against Laker- Impressive
Oct-04-08  Xeroxx: <Now I want to find a game with 4.d4. Be cool if you could search on specific moves such as that.>That would be awesome Ó__Ã’
Sep-28-10  theodor: 23. ..;Be2 is equaling the greatness of the Mona Lisa's smile!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Stonehenge: <Played recently in Kaschau (Košice)>

May-29-16  Calli: Fiala gives an ending against Hermann in 1893 played in "Kassa". Charousek moved to Budapest in 1895. So it could be just a bad date here and it was played in 1893 or it might be 1898 as per Haagsche Courant. You never know what "recently" means in these old publications.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Stonehenge: Kassa is Hungarian for Kaschau/Košice.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: The multiple threatened discovered checks is a nice theme of this game.
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