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Napoleans chess match

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912623.  Tue May 29, 2012 7:45 pm Reply with quote

According to Stephen Napolean lost to the Turk in 19 moves but according to reliable sources this is the game :
1. e4 e5 2. Qf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. Ne2 Bc5 5. a3 d6 6. O-O
Bg4 7. Qd3 Nh5 8. h3 Bxe2 9. Qxe2 Nf4 10. Qe1 Nd4 11. Bb3
Nxh3+ 12. Kh2 Qh4 13. g3 Nf3+ 14. Kg2 Nxe1+ 15. Rxe1 Qg4
16. d3 Bxf2 17. Rh1 Qxg3+ 18. Kf1 Bd4 19. Ke2 Qg2+ 20. Kd1
Qxh1+ 21. Kd2 Qg2+ 22. Ke1 Ng1 23. Nc3 Bxc3+ 24. bxc3 Qe2# 0-1
so we can clearly see the game lasted 24 moves , this is fun isn't it , oh by the way just a sidenote during this game, the Turk was operated by Johann
Allgaier , a German-Austrian chess master and theoretician .

912632.  Tue May 29, 2012 8:08 pm Reply with quote

Well I started this but now I might have to retract it because reliable sources (Chessgames) may be wrong and unreliable sources (Wikipedophile) may be right according to them Napolean tipped his king over after 19 moves , wish I'd kept my mouth shut now instead of blurting something out from that I'd remembered (not the whole PGN obviously) but the "fact" it was more than 20something moves , damn you Chessgames .

912641.  Tue May 29, 2012 9:46 pm Reply with quote

To be fair, there are a few versions of the story, and it's difficult to know which is the correct one.

As I understand it, one of the first mentions of the match seems to come from 90 years after the match, in The American Chess Magazine in 1899. There were other claims that the match was against Catherine the Great, not Napoleon.

Various versions seem to appeaar in books and articles, but the accepted version these days is from Bradley Ewart's book.

912711.  Wed May 30, 2012 5:52 am Reply with quote


912860.  Wed May 30, 2012 4:51 pm Reply with quote

Stop going ON about it :)

913086.  Thu May 31, 2012 8:23 pm Reply with quote

19 moves, or 24?
Could they have played two (or more) games? If Napoleon lost he might have demanded another go (and regretted it).
Does any-one know any original sources?
Also re "claims that the match was against Catherine the Great, not Napoleon." I thought The Turk toured Europe to amaze various heads of state and other rich and famous people. If so both are probably true. Again contemporary accounts would be useful, but I don't know of any.

913090.  Thu May 31, 2012 9:51 pm Reply with quote

Well, I was wrong about first mention, because when reading the entry in the 1899 magazine, it actually refers to an earlier periodical called The Chess Monthly, which was a short lived magazine in New York, and it seems two articles were written in 1857 and 1858 referring to the Turk.

I can't find a free online image of the relevant articles, but have found a wonderful blog with thetranscript of the article:

I'm not sure where the info on the moves came from, but in the 1899 article they already show it:


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