Open main menu

New York Ledger/Chess Department/Problem III

Problem III

by Johan G. Schultz of Upsal, Sweden


a8 b8 c8 d8 e8 f8 g8 h8
a7 b7 c7 d7 e7 f7 g7 h7
a6 b6 c6 d6 e6 f6 g6 h6
a5 b5 c5 d5 e5 f5 g5 h5
a4 b4 c4 d4 e4 f4 g4 h4
a3 b3 c3 d3 e3 f3 g3 h3
a2 b2 c2 d2 e2 f2 g2 h2
a1 b1 c1 d1 e1 f1 g1 h1


White to play and mate in three moves.


Solution to Problem III

1 Nf5+ Kd2 (1...Ke4 2 Bd3+ K-any 3

Q-mates) 2 Bb5+ K-any 3 Q-mates


Game Third

Between Labourdonnais and McDonnell

(Scotch Game)

1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 d4 exd4 4 Bc4 Qf6 5 O-O d6 6 c3 d3 7 Qxd3 Qg6 8 Bf4 Be7 9 Nbd2 Nh6

The position previous to Black's ninth move is the same as in the preceding contest: in commenting on that game we indicated the line of play here adopted by McDonnell as the best at his command.

10 Rae1 O-O 11 Nd4 Ne5 12 Bxe5 dxe5 13 N4f3 Bd6 14 h3

The advance of this pawn was intended by White to answer the two-fold purpose of guarding the g4-square and placing at the command of the king an additional square which it might, be desirable to occupy at a later stage of the game. The move was evidently made in the belief that Black could not capture the pawn without submitting to the loss of a piece.


With the intention of throwing forward his f-pawn. Curiously enough, the apparently fatal step of 14 Bxh3 was the correct play at this juncture, and would have resulted in a decided advantage to Black. Suppose 14...Bxh3 15 Nh4 Qg5 16 Ndf3. If White takes the bishop with queen, Black would capture the queen's knight and remain with a clear pawn. 16...Qg4 17 Kh2 (17 Kh1 Be7 [Black might first play with still greater advantage 17...Rad8. Whatever course now White chooses to adopt, Black must remain with a pawn more: if 18 Nxe5 Bxg2+ 19 Nxg2 Qh5+ 20 Kg1 Qxe5 and Black ought to win. The first volume of the Chess Player's Chronicle gives the following variations, which are also correct: 14...Bxh3 15 Nh4 Qg5 16 Ndf3 Qg4 17 Kh2 {17 Kh1 g5 18 Nxg5 Bxg2+ 19 Nxg2 Qxg5 with the advantage of a pawn} 17...Nf5 and Black must preserve the pawn gained.] 17...Be718 gxh3 (18 Nxe5 Qxh4 19 gxh3 [19 Qxh3 Qf4+ 20 Qg3 Qxe5 21 Qxe5 Ng4+ 22 K-moves, Nxe5 winning easily] 19...Bd6 20 f4 Bxe5 21 fxe5 Ng4+ 22 Kg1 Nxe5 and Black must win.) 17...Be7 18 gxh3 Qf4+ 19 K-moves, Bxh4 with the advantage of a pawn.

15 Nh4 Qh5 16 Qg3 f5 17 Nxf5 Nxf5 18 exf5 Bxf5 19 Ne4 Bxe4 20 Rxe4 Rf6 21 Rh4 Qf5 22 Qe3 Qd7 23 Bd3 g6 24 Be4 Raf8 25 Qg3 Qg7 26 b4

White's efforts, for the next four or five moves, are directed to prevent Black from occupying with his bishop the diagonal of the White f- pawn, while Black is equally earnest in his endeavors to obtain possession of it.

26...a5 27 a3 axb4 28 axb4 c5 29 Rb1 cxb4 30 cxb4 Bc7 31 Kh1 Rb6

31...Rxf2 looks promising, but we doubt whether Black by that mode of play could obtain more than drawn game. 32 Qxg6 (Best; the move 32 Bxg6 would evidently be bad, as Black would check with the rook and then advance the e-pawn.) 32...Rf1+ 33 Rxf1 Rxf1+ 34 Kh2 Qxg6 35 Bxg6 e4+ 36 g3 and Black draws, but we can discover no course leading to a more favorable result. We think, therefore, that McDonnell, having rather the better game, acted wisely in rejecting the move 31...Rxf2. The play selected instead is the commencement of a highly ingenious combination, by which he gained a fine attack.

32 b5 Bd8 33 Rg4 g5 34 Bf3 h5 35 Re4 g4 36 hxg4

It would surely have been more prudent to retreat the bishop to e2. By taking the pawn he opened his king to an attack which ought to have legitimately resulted in a victory for Black.

36...hxg4 37 Qxg4 Rh6+ 38 Kg1 Qh7 39 g3 Rg8 40 Qc8 Bb6 41 Qc3 Rxg3+ 42 Kf1 Bd4 43 Qc8+ Rg8 44 Qc4 Rh1+

As previous commentators have truly remarked, Black might now have easily won by 44...Rh2.

45 Ke2 Rxb1 46 Rxd4 Rb2+

It is quite evident that if 46...exd4, White could have drawn by perpetual check.

47 Rd2 Rxd2+ 48 Kxd2 Rd8+ 49 Ke2 Qh6 50 Qc3 Qg7 51 Be4 Kg8 52 Qb3+ Kf8 53 Qf3+ Qf7 54 Bxb7 Qxf3+ 55 Kxf3

Drawn Game

This work was published before January 1, 1924, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.