The 2nd Deutscher Schachkongress ("German chess congress") was organised by Hermann Zwanzig and Emil Schallopp, and took place in Berlin from August to September 1881. It included the 2nd Meisterturnier (master's tournament) organized by the Deutscher Schachbund (DSB) in the two years since Berthold Englisch won the first at Leipzig (1879). A large field of German masters shared the board with many of the best that Europe had to offer. The brightest lights among the German participants were Louis Paulsen and his brother Wilfried, and Johannes Minckwitz. Great Britain was represented by Joseph Henry Blackburne and James Mason. Mikhail Chigorin travelled over from Russia, and two great masters from Poland, Simon Winawer and Johannes Zukertort, also participated. The 18 collected masters was a field of strength that had not been seen since Baden-Baden (1870). The games were fiercely fought, as few draws were recorded, and a formula from this event would serve as a template for all future chess congresses in Germany before the Great War. |
Berlin, 29 August - 17 September 1881
The last round game Blackburne - Noa was not played (the latter was sick and forfeited the game). Pitschel played in the first three rounds and withdrew from the tournament. His games did not count in the official tournament record, but are included in this collection. This was the best tournament result of Blackburne's career. He dominated the field with an amazing final score of 14/16, losing only one game to his countryman Mason, and earning wins against some of the best chess masters of the day.
1st Blackburne 14 /16 * 1 1 1 0 ½ 1 1 ½ 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
2nd Zukertort 11 /16 0 * ½ 1 ½ 1 1 1 ½ 1 0 0 1 1 ½ 1 1
=3rd Winawer 10½/16 0 ½ * 0 1 0 1 ½ 1 1 1 0 1 1 ½ 1 1
=3rd Chigorin 10½/16 0 0 1 * 0 0 0 ½ 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
=5th Mason 9½/16 1 ½ 0 1 * ½ ½ 0 ½ 1 0 1 0 1 1 ½ 1
=5th Wittek 9½/16 ½ 0 1 1 ½ * ½ 1 ½ 0 1 0 ½ 1 0 1 1
=7th von Minckwitz 8½/16 0 0 0 1 ½ ½ * 1 ½ 0 0 1 ½ 1 1 1 ½
=7th Schwarz 8½/16 0 0 ½ ½ 1 0 0 * 1 1 ½ 1 0 ½ 1 ½ 1
=9th Berger 8 /16 ½ ½ 0 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 * 0 0 1 1 ½ 1 1 1
=9th Paulsen, L 8 /16 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 * ½ 1 ½ 1 ½ ½ 1
11th Paulsen, W 7½/16 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 ½ 1 ½ * 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ 1
12th Schallopp 7 /16 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 * 1 0 1 0 1
=13th Riemann 6½/16 0 0 0 0 1 ½ ½ 1 0 ½ ½ 0 * 0 1 ½ 1
=13th Wemmers 6½/16 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ 1 1 * 1 1 1
15th Noa 5½/16 0 ½ ½ 0 0 1 0 0 0 ½ 1 0 0 0 * 1 1
16th Schmid 3½/16 0 0 0 0 ½ 0 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ 1 ½ 0 0 * 0
17th von Schuetz 1½/16 0 0 0 0 0 0 ½ 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 *
Pitschel 0/3 - - 0 0 - - - - 0 - - - - - - - - (expunged)
The Berlin Hauptturnier (1881) was won by Curt von Bardeleben, qualifying him for DSB's 3rd Meisterturnier at Nuremberg (1883).
Der erste, zweite und dritte Kongress des Deutschen Schachbundes: Leipzig 1879 Berlin 1881 Nürnberg 1883 by Emil Schallopp. New ed. by Edition Olms, Zürich 1979. ISBN 3283000255.
Original collection: Game Collection: Berlin 1881 by User: suenteus po 147.
| page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 138
| page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 138
< Earlier Kibitzing · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·
|Nov-02-12|| ||Shams: Does anyone know why 1879 winner Berthold Englisch did not participate?|
|Nov-02-12|| ||waustad: <ws>I've been in Berlin, but dialect there is a stretch. I remember how hard it was to try to cut through the Viennese dialect pieces in Kurier (http://kurier.at/) and I even lived there for a while. There is no guarantee that they still have those little dialect poems. The media is probably evening out dialects now like everywhere. We don't talk the same but we all pretty much understand a TV standard.|
|Nov-02-12|| ||MountainMatt: And where was Steinitz???|
|Nov-03-12|| ||Shams: Are there not complete game scores for this tournament? The winner has only 15 games out of 16, while runners-up Winawer and Chigorin have apparently 17 out of 16 games each (?).|
|Nov-03-12|| ||Benzol: <Shams> Chigorin, Winawer and Berger were the only ones who played Pitschel.|
|Nov-03-12|| ||Shams: <Benzol> I see, thank you. But where is Blackburne's missing game? From the crosstable, he played 16 games, and there's no mention of a forfeit in the tournament summary.|
|Nov-03-12|| ||Shams: 365chess.com has a link to the missing game Blackburne - Noa, but the PGN is empty.|
|Nov-03-12|| ||Phony Benoni: <Shams> The empty PGN indicates the score is not available. It's just 365's way of filling out the tournament table.|
|Nov-03-12|| ||twinlark: Shame about the missing game scores, but it's amazing so many actually survived through to the present day.|
|Nov-03-12|| ||twinlark: Not literally, but long enough to be recorded for posterity.|
Having been involved in the transcription of tournament scores for online publication, I know what an incredibly tedious job it to decipher hundreds of score sheets.
|Nov-03-12|| ||Calli: <twinlark> added a footnote to explain the missing game. I did the Rd/Dates for this one and dimly recalled something about. Editor Hermann Zwanzig wrote "Die Partie Blackburne - Dr Noa wurde nicht gespielt, the letzterer sich unwohl fühlte und deshalb auf das Spiel verzichtete."|
|Nov-04-12|| ||Benzol: <waustad> <Thanks cg!> Whilst I want to thank <chessgames> too, I also want to thank <suenteus po 147> for creating the collection in the first place and <Calli> for the work he put in to make it possible for this "live" page to become a reality.|
|Feb-10-13|| ||optimal play: Amazing to compare Blackburne’s superb performance at this tournament with his relatively poor showing just a month or so earlier in his match with Zukertort in London. In that match, Blackburne was roundly beaten by Zukertort by 7 wins to 2, yet in this tournament he scored 12 wins out of 15 (including Zukertort) only losing the one game (against Mason) and finishing a clear 1st.|
Interesting to consider Wilhelm Steinitz’s assessment of Blackburne’s playing style and how it was more suitable to tournaments rather than a one-on-one match: <<Mr Blackburne’s anti-drawing inclination makes him one of the most dangerous rivals in tournaments where the draws count half ; but the same characteristic places him at great disadvantage in a single-handed match, more especially when he stands already behind in the score. In such a case it is most dangerous policy to try to force a win at some hazard, for this amounts actually to giving the large odds of the draw, which, in the opinion of some authorities, is equivalent to pawn and move, while it is clearly the wiser plan for the party who stands at a disadvantage in the score to take such odds for himself by keeping on the defensive, and watching for more positive opportunities of increasing his score.>
The Field, London, 1881.07.16>
Steinitz wrote that comment during Blackburne’s match with Zukertort and before the Berlin tournament, so his rivals should have been well aware not to underestimate him.
|Mar-28-13|| ||suenteus po 147: Wow, just...wow. A guy disappears on walkabout for roughly a year and suddenly he comes back to find the whole world has gone crazy! When did this happen? And why are people reading my terrible tournament introductions???|
|Mar-28-13|| ||Jim Bartle: He's like Moses returning from the Mountain.|
|Mar-28-13|| ||suenteus po 147: <Jim Bartle> I do feel like I have horns growing out of my forehead.|
|Mar-28-13|| ||Shams: <suenteus po 147> Welcome back! Any shamanic visions to share with us?|
|Mar-28-13|| ||suenteus po 147: <Shams> Yes! Stop taking out student loans, don't go for that extra graduate degree! Work hard, but live well. Doing for others is doing for yourself. Etc.|
|Mar-28-13|| ||Shams: I was hoping for mystical fireworks, but ça marche.|
|Apr-04-16|| ||zanzibar: At the time of the tournament Zukertort was viewed as representing Britain, and not Poland:|
<Thankful as we are to Dr. Zukertort for the able manner in which he has represented this country as a naturalised Englishman in several tourneys, we cannot of course disguise our satisfaction that an Englishman by birth has succeeded in wresting the first prize at Berlin from so many other doughty champions.>
BCM v1 (Oct 1882) p317/326
And it should be mentioned that Winawer's Poland was part of the Russian Empire at the time, and so he was often referred to as representing Russia in the press.
|Apr-04-16|| ||zanzibar: Some important parameters of the tournament found here:|
<BCM v1 (Aug/Sep 1881) p292/301
Germany. We have received a copy of the Programme of the Second
Congress of the German Chess Association, which will commence at the
Germania Restaurant, 34, Taubenstrasse, Berlin, on the 29th
inst. These will be, as usual, a Masters' Tourney, and three other
game tourneys, besides the Tombola and Problem tourneys. Also the
proceedings are intended to include blindfold play, consultation
games, and a solution tourney, and they will be diversified with a
banquet and two excursions. For the Masters' tourney the entrance fee
is 30 marks, and there will be four prizes of 1200, 600, 400, and 300
marks respectively. The time limit is 15 moves an hour. Some admirable
rules, which we cannot notice in detail, with regard to "private
agreements," "interruptions," and the appointment of a "Decision
Court" for cases not contemplated by the rules, conclude the programme
of this tourney. In the chief of the inferior tourneys, the entrance
fee is 10 marks, and the play will be in groups, the winners of each
group afterwards contending for the prizes, of which there will be
four, valued at 200, 120, 80, and 50 marks. In this, as well as the
two other minor tourneys, the time limit is 20 moves an hour. All
entries must be sent in by Aug. 20th to Herr E. Schallopp, Berlin W.,
Important notes: time control = 20 moves/hr
Prizes: 1200, 600, 400, and 300 ℳ
(Note later notice discusses tiebreak for 5th/6th where Wittek resigned contest to Mason without any games being played. Also, with the approval of the committee Winawer and Chigorin shared 3rd/4th prize).
|Apr-04-16|| ||zanzibar: <For the third and fourth prizes there was a tie between
Messrs. Tschigorin and Winawer, who scored 10½ games each, and for the
fifth and sixth prizes, which were additionally presented by the
Committee, there were also equal scores of 9½ games each made by
Messrs. Mason and Wittek.>
BCM v1 (Oct 1882) p317/326
|Apr-04-16|| ||zanzibar: Does anyone know what this statement is about:
<a formula from this event would serve as a template for all future chess congresses in Germany before the Great War>
at the end of the intro?
|Apr-04-16|| ||zanzibar: Can somebody please supply me with a quotable ref for the Blackburne--Noa forfeit?|
I.e. a ref from one of the contemporaneous periodicals, or the tb.
|Apr-04-16|| ||zanzibar: An exact ref for Calli's post is what I had in mind:|
Berlin (1881) (kibitz #20)
<The game Blackburne - Dr Noa was not played, the latter felt uneasy and therefore renounced the game>
<Die Partie Blackburne - Dr Noa wurde nicht gespielt, the letzterer sich unwohl fühlte und deshalb auf das Spiel verzichtete>
< Earlier Kibitzing · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·
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