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Paul Morphy vs Louis Paulsen
1st American Chess Congress, New York (1857), New York, NY USA, rd 4, Nov-02
Sicilian Defense: Paulsen-Basman Defense (B40)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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May-24-08  addiction to chess: Morphy was truly Great.
Sep-22-08  The Chess Express: He’s my favorite early chess player.
Dec-13-08  Bear With Me: It is easy to overlook that Morphy had a good understanding of endgames, as well as being noted for his tactical play. In this respect I think he is similar to Tal, who as we all know was a tactical genius, but has many fine endgame wins to his credit where he shows excellent technique, but is never really given proper recognition, in same way as it wass for Morphy:
Jun-02-09  David2009: There is a very interesting variation proposed by <Calli> in Morphy-Paulsen 5th match game 1857. After the moves 47...Re5! (in place of 47...Ke5) 48.Ra6 Re3+! 49.Kf2! Rc3 50.Rxb6+ Ke5 51.a5 Rxc2+ 52.Kf3 Rc3+ 53.Ke2 d4, one reaches with White to play

click for larger view

This gives Black better practical chances than in the game but still seems to be a win for White. I can see no defence to 54 a6, e.g. 54.. Ke4 55 Rb5 Rc2+ 56 Kd1 Kd3 57 a7 and Black has insufficient counter-play. Comments welcome.

Jun-18-11  fionas88888: Beautiful game, I love the purity and clarity of Morphy's play.
Aug-21-12  pericles of athens: 61. Rxd4+! I love it!
Premium Chessgames Member
  LIFE Master AJ: A monster game of chess, esp. for the time period. Morphy triumphs, perhaps from sheer talent and force of will, in nothing else. (His opening looked somewhat questionable.)
Premium Chessgames Member
  LIFE Master AJ: Perhaps better was 6.Na3!
Nov-19-12  schnarre: ...Morphy was definitely sharper in tactics here, but this was one of Paulson's better games against him: Black had satisfactory play for quite some time. A great Morphy game from both sides!
Nov-09-14  joddon: a futuristic game of capablanca almost.endgame pawn complications must have begun now!!
Nov-19-14  Ke2: i love how theatrical even the rook endgame is
Apr-21-16  Bobinator: I can understand why Paulsen resigned. And we could all win in the position of a queen a pawn and a king vs a king. Still i feel if allowed Morphy would have closed out the game creatively in one or two moves.
Jan-18-21  bkpov: 42...Ne4+ for black. Any thing wrong with this move?
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <Louis Paulsen was one of the best players in the world, and easily second best in America at the time.>

But Paulsen was more of an unknown before this event than Morphy.

Jan-18-21  realdumptrump: Gack, <Missy>, you're replying to a post from 2003 on page 1 (out of 3), without noting either the author or link?

Points off just for sheer laziness.

How hard is it to copy-and-paste the perma-link?

Morphy vs Paulsen, 1857 (kibitz #4)


PS- I'm lazy too, i.e. too lazy to switch into my Z4all superhero uniform for this post.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Renette's book on Paulsen indicates that he'd never had a game published before the start of the event. That he was even there suggests the tom-toms between Dubuque and New York were in operation, but he must have arrived in town as an absolute stranger.
Jan-18-21  realdumptrump: An absolute stranger given the honor of sitting with Morphy for the tournament group photo?


Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: But when was the photo taken?
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: This video catches the drama of Paulsen's arrival:

Jan-18-21  realdumptrump: I have that info somewhere (i.e. Brady's photo date), but whenever, Paulsen is clearly featured.

I'm looking forward to your video... don't disappoint me now!

Jan-18-21  realdumptrump: Yeah, good one.

(Please excuse me, I have to go change into my cape)

Premium Chessgames Member
  fredthebear: Batgirl contributed this article on The First American Chess Congress of 1857: (By comparison, The Lincoln-Douglas Debates occurred in Illinois in 1858. The War Between the States, The American Civil War was fought from 1861-1865.)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Messiah: Excellent game! How did it miss being a GOTD so far, is completely beyond my comprehension. Let's call it <A Pin, But Not A Safety Pin>, to live up to CG standards.
Jan-02-23  paulmorphy1969: Monday afternoon 2 November 1857 (5th game) Game started and adjourned at 17:00. Resumes on Tuesday 3 November. Morphy wins his second game. Game published in Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, 3 Apr 1858 with a duration of 10 hours 7 minutes. Link:
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Could that have been the earliest publication of the game?
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