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Karl Behting vs Aron Nimzowitsch
Corr Match Behting - Nimzowitsch (1911) (correspondence), corr, rd 1
Philidor Defense: Nimzowitsch. Klein Variation (C41)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: A very pretty final combination by Behting, whose knight at e3 goes on to do great things. Perhaps this inspired Nimzowitsch to try Ne3 in this game, featured in <My System>: Nimzowitsch vs K Behting, 1919.
Feb-01-12  RookFile: Well, I'm "betting" that with 6.... c6, Nimzo might have put up tougher resistance.
Feb-01-12  sneaky pete:

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You lose your bet. 6... c6 is a complete waste of time. After 7.Re1 .. (with in most cases Rxe4 .. next) white gets a fierce attack.

Schlechter recommends 6... Nf6 when after 7.Re1 Be7 8.Bd3 O-O black's game may be uncomfortable, but should be tenable.

Feb-01-12  RookFile: Hi Sneaky, I'm sure you must be right, but what happens after 6...c6 7. Re1 Qh4?

Maybe this is an omen not to bet on Super Bowl Sunday.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Stunning. This reminds me of a game I played once (and loss).
Feb-01-12  rannewman: RookFile, your attack is lacking any real threat, and you try to launch it with all your pieces undeveloped and your king in the middle. 6...C6 7.Re1 Qh4 8.f3 and white should win easly.
Feb-01-12  RookFile: The first point is that I'm not using a computer. My chess skills are rusty, and I'm trying to do analysis the old fashioned way.

Qh4 is really a defensive move. We need to understand what Sneaky Pete was saying. He was saying that after 6....c6 7. Re1, if black plays something like 7.... Be6, then 8. Rxe4 dxe4 9. Bxe6 fxe6 10. Qh5+ is a problem.

So, in playing ...Qh4 first, Black seeks to remove the possibility of white playing the important Qh5 move.

rannewman, returning to your variation, after 6....c6 7. Re1 Qh4 8. f3, play might continue 8....Be6 9. fxe4 dxc4, and I'm afraid I don't see white's winning continuation. It appears that black has two bishops to compensate for white's better pawns, and a possibility of ....Bd6 applying pressure to h2. Can you please show me?

click for larger view

Feb-02-12  sneaky pete: After 6... c6 7.Re1 Qh4 8.g3 .. and if the queen retreats to f6 or e7 then 9.Rxe4 dxe4 10.Nxf7 Rg8 11.Bg5 .. next.
Feb-02-12  RookFile: Yes, I suspect that this is white's best play. Is your intention 6....c6 7. Re1 Qh4 8. g3 Qe7 9. Rxe4 Be6 10. Re1 dxc4 11. Nxc4. White wins a pawn, black has the two bishops.

It seems white wins with best play, the position somewhat resembles a Ruy Lopez Marshall Gambit, but black doesn't have nearly the same pressure here that he does in Marshall's line.

Is there better for white?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Marcelo Bruno: About the game, I have the comments from the Rigaer Tageblatt translated to French in Henri Delaire's L'échecs modernes.
Premium Chessgames Member

<Riga 1911> Correspondence Match Behting v Nimzowitsch. Behting won the match +1-0=1

Dec-04-19  sneaky pete: <Riga 1911>

Schlechter in the Deutsche Schachzeitung, April 1913: "First game from a correspondence match. Played from April to December 1912."

Schlechter gives the <Rigaer Tageblatt> as his source for score and year.

Premium Chessgames Member

<sneaky pete>

My source for the dating is Skjoldager and Nielsens' <"Aron Nimzowitsch On the Road to Chess Mastery 1886-1924"> pp.143-145

It's possible that Skjoldager and Nielsen may have transcribed the date inaccurately from <Deutsche Schachzeitung, April 1913>, since they list the same issue for this game- adding "page 10" to the listing.

They would have had to make two mistakes though- They list <Tidskrift For Schack 1913 no. 5-6 pp.83-85> for the second game in this match: Nimzowitsch vs K Behting, 1911

I'm looking at page 83 of that issue of the <Tidskrift> right now: This is what it says about the second game in this match:

"Andra partiet fran Korrespondensmatchen. Speladt fran april 1911 till januari 1913"

(Second game from the correspondence match. Played from April 1911 to January 1913)

I wonder if Skjoldager and Nielsen noticed the discrepancy, and made an editorial decision on which year the match started? Either that or they made a mistake transcribing the date from the <Deutsche Schachzeitung, April 1913>.

Might you provide a link to the <Deutsche Schachzeitung, April 1913>? I would like to look at that as well.

Premium Chessgames Member

<sneaky pete> this is not exactly on topic, though it's a coincidence that bears somewhat on the topic in this thread.

I was just now fact checking this game Allies vs Nimzowitsch, 1921 and I noticed that Skjoldager and Nielsen appear to have made an error.

They list "Uppsala" as the site, but the issue and page number of the <Tidskrift> they cite actually says "Orebro" is the site. Allies vs Nimzowitsch, 1921 (kibitz #8)

Anyways. Anyone may make an error(s) and it is our job to find out what actually happened, if that's possible.

Dec-04-19  sneaky pete: <jfq> I can't give a link to that DSZ issue, I only have an old fashioned papery thing. The game is on pages 110 and 111. The heading reads:

8456. Französisches Springerspiel.

(1. Partie eines Korrespondenzwettkampfes. Gespielt von April bis Dezember 1912.)


Looking at the dates given by S. & N. and considering that the other game lasted 65 moves, it's likely that both games started simultaneously April 1911. The "first" game may have been finished in December 1911 and the other one in January 1913, and the games were only published after both were completed. Schlechter was probably confused about the dates, but our Scandinavian friends were not, and everyone lived happily ever after.

Premium Chessgames Member

<sneaky pete>

Thanks for going the extra mile!

I have an old fashioned papery copy of our Scandinavian friends' book and I can attest it "feels good." The only downside I can think of is "papery cuts" but in my entire life I have never gotten one of those. Secretly, I believe they may be an urban legend...

I hope they are still planning to complete the second volume of their wonderful biography on Nimzowitsch.

Feb-05-20  Granny O Doul: At the climax you can see the hand of the master, Behting.

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