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One Hundred and One Great Endgames
Compiled by Nasruddin Hodja
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I have a particular liking for well-fought endgames. Here are a few "endgame immortals", which are undeservedly less well-known than the great brilliancies. Many of these games (from 1970 or earlier) appear in (a) Tartakower/DuMont's _500 Master Games of Chess, (b) Chernev's _The Most Instructive Games Ever Played_ and Shereshevsky's _Endgame Strategy_.


How to play against the Queen. R+B+N+2P vs. Q.
Jaenisch vs Staunton, 1851 
(C29) Vienna Gambit, 91 moves, 0-1

Even two queens may not be enough... 2R+B+N+P vs. 2Q.
R Franz vs Mayet, 1858 
(C42) Petrov Defense, 69 moves, 0-1

Morphy knew his endgames. R vs. R.
Harrwitz vs Morphy, 1858  
(A84) Dutch, 54 moves, 0-1

...and the importance of space in the endgame. R+B vs. R+B.
Harrwitz vs Morphy, 1858 
(A84) Dutch, 54 moves, 0-1

How to win when the exchange up. R vs. N.
Steinitz vs Anderssen, 1866 
(C30) King's Gambit Declined, 85 moves, 1-0

Too many pawns, too little time. 2R vs. R+6P.
Blackburne vs Steinitz, 1876 
(C45) Scotch Game, 66 moves, 0-1

Queen endgame simplification. Q vs. Q.
Blackburne vs Max Weiss, 1889 
(C65) Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense, 70 moves, 0-1

Bishop endgame payback. B vs. B (same color).
Max Weiss vs Blackburne, 1889 
(B01) Scandinavian, 57 moves, 0-1

Passed pawns must be pushed! R vs. R.
Tarrasch vs E Thorold, 1890 
(C07) French, Tarrasch, 56 moves, 1-0

The Breakthrough Specialist. N vs. N, then pawns.
Pillsbury vs Gunsberg, 1895 
(D10) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, 40 moves, 1-0

Hungarian Rhapsody. R vs. R.
Charousek vs Pillsbury, 1896 
(C29) Vienna Gambit, 66 moves, 1-0

Be patient, even with a piece up. R vs. R+B.
Pillsbury vs Tarrasch, 1903 
(C63) Ruy Lopez, Schliemann Defense, 83 moves, 0-1

Nimzomania--world's longest stalemate combination. 2R vs. 2R.
A E Post vs Nimzowitsch, 1905 
(D07) Queen's Gambit Declined, Chigorin Defense, 98 moves, 1/2-1/2

27 years of endgame superiority, embodied in one game. N vs B.
Marshall vs Lasker, 1907 
(C65) Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense, 50 moves, 0-1

The endgame player who could have been world champion. R vs. R.
Rubinstein vs Lasker, 1909  
(D30) Queen's Gambit Declined, 40 moves, 1-0

And again! R vs. R.
Spielmann vs Rubinstein, 1909  
(C88) Ruy Lopez, 75 moves, 0-1

Akiba pushes pawns. Pawn endgame.
E Cohn vs Rubinstein, 1909 
(D21) Queen's Gambit Accepted, 38 moves, 0-1

The Chess Machine. R vs. R+B.
Marshall vs Capablanca, 1909 
(D33) Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch, 49 moves, 0-1

Give up pawns, but activate your rook! R vs. R.
Schlechter vs Lasker, 1910  
(C66) Ruy Lopez, 69 moves, 1/2-1/2

How to transition into a pawn endgame. R vs. R, then pawns.
Alekhine vs Yates, 1910 
(D61) Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox, Rubinstein Attack, 46 moves, 1-0

One of Marshall's best endgames. B vs. B (same color).
Teichmann vs Marshall, 1911 
(C42) Petrov Defense, 76 moves, 0-1

Rook endings are drawn? Guess again! R vs. R.
Duras vs Capablanca, 1913 
(D37) Queen's Gambit Declined, 75 moves, 0-1

Opposites, shmopposites! B vs. B (opposite colors).
Nimzowitsch vs Capablanca, 1913 
(C50) Giuoco Piano, 64 moves, 0-1

And Lasker knew the art of payback... R vs. R.
Lasker vs Rubinstein, 1914 
(C82) Ruy Lopez, Open, 66 moves, 1-0

The Zugzwang symphony. R vs. R.
Capablanca vs B Kostic, 1919 
(C42) Petrov Defense, 86 moves, 1-0

"A splendid example of Reti's careful defense." R vs. R.
Alekhine vs Reti, 1922 
(C77) Ruy Lopez, 59 moves, 1/2-1/2

An "only" move to win. R vs. B.
Alekhine vs Tartakower, 1922 
(C11) French, 46 moves, 1-0

How to defend when the exchange down. N draws against R + P!
Lasker vs Ed. Lasker, 1924 
(C99) Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin, 12...cd, 103 moves, 1/2-1/2

World-famous rook ending. R vs. R.
Capablanca vs Tartakower, 1924  
(A80) Dutch, 52 moves, 1-0

Don't mess with Sir George! R vs. R, then Q+R vs. Q+R.
G A Thomas vs Reti, 1925 
(A52) Budapest Gambit, 73 moves, 1-0

The enemy pawn as a shield. R vs. R.
W Schlage vs Reti, 1928 
(B29) Sicilian, Nimzovich-Rubinstein, 47 moves, 0-1

How does he do it?! R vs. R.
H K Mattison vs Rubinstein, 1929 
(C68) Ruy Lopez, Exchange, 38 moves, 0-1

Tactical ambush = winning endgame. R+N vs. R+N.
Alekhine vs Tartakower, 1930 
(A90) Dutch, 50 moves, 1-0

"He now treats us all like patzers!" 2R vs. R+N.
Alekhine vs Vidmar, 1931 
(D43) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 66 moves, 1-0

The Sultan's Rook Ending. 2R vs. 2R.
Sultan Khan vs Flohr, 1932 
(B13) Caro-Kann, Exchange, 70 moves, 1-0

The Plan is the Endgame I. R+B vs. R+B.
Znosko-Borovsky vs Alekhine, 1933 
(C79) Ruy Lopez, Steinitz Defense Deferred, 55 moves, 0-1

Flohr at his best. 2B vs. 2N duel.
Flohr vs Botvinnik, 1933 
(E38) Nimzo-Indian, Classical, 4...c5, 69 moves, 1-0

Nimzo's Swan Song. N vs. N.
Lasker vs Nimzowitsch, 1934 
(C17) French, Winawer, Advance, 65 moves, 0-1

One weak pawn = loss against Don Jose. 2R vs. 2R.
Kan vs Capablanca, 1936 
(C25) Vienna, 56 moves, 0-1

The Plan is the Endgame II. R+N vs. R+B.
Capablanca vs Ragozin, 1936 
(E22) Nimzo-Indian, Spielmann Variation, 63 moves, 1-0

"In endgames, Efim, I win because I'm Sammy!" B+N vs. 2N.
Bogoljubov vs Reshevsky, 1936 
(E49) Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3, Botvinnik System, 72 moves, 0-1

Samuel, endgame prophet. R vs. R.
Tartakower vs Reshevsky, 1937 
(C22) Center Game, 63 moves, 0-1

The Soviet vs. The Russian. R+N vs. R+N.
Botvinnik vs Alekhine, 1938 
(D41) Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch, 51 moves, 1-0

Keres' finest hour. R vs. B.
Fine vs Keres, 1938 
(C86) Ruy Lopez, Worrall Attack, 57 moves, 0-1

Alekhine's sparring partners. B vs. B (opposite colors).
Bogoljubov vs Euwe, 1941 
(B11) Caro-Kann, Two Knights, 3...Bg4, 81 moves, 0-1

Rook ending main course, Lucena solution for dessert. R vs. R.
Botvinnik vs Boleslavsky, 1941 
(C07) French, Tarrasch, 65 moves, 1-0

How to use the queen against minor pieces. Q vs. R+N.
Smyslov vs Keres, 1941 
(C99) Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin, 12...cd, 72 moves, 1-0

2 passed pawns beat the exchange. A Fine endgame. B vs. R.
Fine vs Reshevsky, 1942 
(D82) Grunfeld, 4.Bf4, 74 moves, 1-0

Not bad for an opera singer. R vs. R.
Smyslov vs Reshevsky, 1948 
(C75) Ruy Lopez, Modern Steinitz Defense, 52 moves, 1-0

Chernev's "Symphony of Heavenly Length". R vs. R.
Larry Evans vs H Opsahl, 1950 
(D51) Queen's Gambit Declined, 81 moves, 1-0

Da Bot Keeps Da Title. 2B vs. 2N.
Botvinnik vs Bronstein, 1951 
(E60) King's Indian Defense, 57 moves, 1-0

Young Viktor the Terrible at work: 48. ... Ke7! R vs. R.
Smyslov vs Korchnoi, 1952 
(A31) English, Symmetrical, Benoni Formation, 51 moves, 0-1

Polygamy! B vs. B (same color), then Q vs Q.
Smyslov vs Keres, 1953 
(A21) English, 92 moves, 1-0

An amazing breakthrough. B vs. B (opposite colors).
Kotov vs Botvinnik, 1955 
(D46) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 65 moves, 0-1

Zugswang and Outflanking. N vs. B.
Botvinnik vs Smyslov, 1957 
(A15) English, 69 moves, 0-1

Little Bobby was an endgame terror. N vs. B.
Fischer vs Mednis, 1957 
(A07) King's Indian Attack, 50 moves, 1-0

He's baaack... R+B vs. R+B, then R vs. R.
Botvinnik vs Smyslov, 1958 
(A16) English, 74 moves, 1-0

Spassky's best endgame? Q vs. R+B.
Korchnoi vs Spassky, 1959 
(B11) Caro-Kann, Two Knights, 3...Bg4, 98 moves, 0-1

Combination Man vs. Endgame Man. N vs. N, then N vs. 3P.
Nezhmetdinov vs Averbakh, 1959 
(B60) Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer, 63 moves, 0-1

Never give up. Botvinnik's coffee thermos swindle. R vs. R.
Tal vs Botvinnik, 1961 
(B12) Caro-Kann Defense, 121 moves, 1/2-1/2

The Principle of Two Weaknesses strikes again. N vs. B.
Keres vs Reshevsky, 1963 
(C87) Ruy Lopez, 73 moves, 0-1

Before Tiger Woods, there was _Tigran_. B+N vs. B+N.
Petrosian vs Botvinnik, 1963 
(E19) Queen's Indian, Old Main line, 9.Qxc3, 66 moves, 1-0

Tal was no slouch at the endgame either. N vs. B.
Smyslov vs Tal, 1964 
(A36) English, 72 moves, 0-1

Eleven and Zilch! B vs. N.
Saidy vs Fischer, 1964 
(A33) English, Symmetrical, 56 moves, 0-1

Petrosian demonstrates "Do Not Hurry". R+B vs. R+N.
Petrosian vs Najdorf, 1966 
(A05) Reti Opening, 86 moves, 1-0

An epic battle. 2N vs. B+N.
Keres vs Portisch, 1967 
(C93) Ruy Lopez, Closed, Smyslov Defense, 90 moves, 0-1

Vasily rides again. R vs. R.
Smyslov vs Korchnoi, 1967 
(E10) Queen's Pawn Game, 74 moves, 1-0

Grand Larseny (har har!). B vs. B (same color).
Larsen vs Stein, 1970 
(E67) King's Indian, Fianchetto, 81 moves, 1-0

A good endgame even on Board 2. B vs. N.
Petrosian vs Fischer, 1970 
(A37) English, Symmetrical, 66 moves, 0-1

Taimanov's nightmare. B vs. N.
Fischer vs Taimanov, 1971 
(B47) Sicilian, Taimanov (Bastrikov) Variation, 71 moves, 1-0

End of an era. R+B vs. R+3P.
Spassky vs Fischer, 1972 
(B04) Alekhine's Defense, Modern, 74 moves, 0-1

Time pressure marathon. R+N vs. R+N.
Petrosian vs Keene, 1973 
(A50) Queen's Pawn Game, 96 moves, 1-0

Locked pawns, bad enemy bishop = win. R+B vs. R+B.
Karpov vs Ribli, 1973 
(B52) Sicilian, Canal-Sokolsky (Rossolimo) Attack, 71 moves, 1-0

The Anti-Fischer. R+B vs. R+N.
Spassky vs Karpov, 1974 
(B18) Caro-Kann, Classical, 56 moves, 0-1

Beating Karpov at his own game. R+B vs. R+ B, then R+P vs. 2P.
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1974 
(A45) Queen's Pawn Game, 79 moves, 1-0

Space! Compare to Harrwitz vs. Morphy. R+B vs. R+B.
Kasparov vs J O Fries Nielsen, 1977 
(C69) Ruy Lopez, Exchange, Gligoric Variation, 53 moves, 1-0

With queens, shelter your king. Ulf knows. Q vs. Q.
Ulf Andersson vs C Garcia Palermo, 1978
(E17) Queen's Indian, 73 moves, 1-0

The Exchange wins again. R+R vs. R+B.
Karpov vs Ulf Andersson, 1980 
(E14) Queen's Indian, 81 moves, 1-0

Problem win of the exchange, then what an endgame! R vs. B.
Speelman vs Kasparov, 1981 
(A30) English, Symmetrical, 70 moves, 0-1

The more exposed king loses in queen endgames. R+B vs. R+N.
Kasparov vs Beliavsky, 1981 
(D19) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Dutch, 66 moves, 1-0

Looks like a bear, plays like a bear in endgames. R+B+N vs. Q+B
Balashov vs Yusupov, 1982 
(C42) Petrov Defense, 90 moves, 0-1

Sudden-death ambush in the endgame. 2R vs. 2R.
Keene vs E Mortensen, 1983 
(A05) Reti Opening, 47 moves, 1-0

Karpov gets a new challenger. R vs. R.
Korchnoi vs Kasparov, 1983 
(D30) Queen's Gambit Declined, 77 moves, 0-1

Karpov as endgame machine. N vs. B.
Karpov vs Kasparov, 1984 
(D34) Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch, 70 moves, 1-0

Even the Petrov doesn't stop Kasparov. R vs. R.
Kasparov vs Karpov, 1985 
(C42) Petrov Defense, 67 moves, 1-0

At his best, Yaz can beat anyone. R vs. R.
Seirawan vs Kasparov, 1986 
(D91) Grunfeld, 5.Bg5, 62 moves, 1-0

The patience of a Dutchman. Q vs. Q.
G Ligterink vs Timman, 1987
(B08) Pirc, Classical, 109 moves, 0-1

Sevillana dolorosa. Q+B vs. Q+N.
Kasparov vs Karpov, 1987  
(A13) English, 64 moves, 1-0

The feud continues. R vs. R.
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1988 
(A33) English, Symmetrical, 60 moves, 1-0

Two "defective" Soviet citizens. R vs. B+P.
Korchnoi vs Spassky, 1989 
(D50) Queen's Gambit Declined, 62 moves, 1-0

A good Scotch, well-aged. R+B vs. B+N.
Kasparov vs Karpov, 1990 
(C45) Scotch Game, 102 moves, 1-0

Judit demonstrates B+N mate. Blindfolded. What a gal...
Ljubojevic vs Judit Polgar, 1994 
(B22) Sicilian, Alapin, 106 moves, 0-1

Astounding piece sac in the endgame. B vs. B (opp. colors).
Topalov vs Shirov, 1998 
(D85) Grunfeld, 53 moves, 0-1

New generation vs. old, plus 2N vs. 1P checkmate. 2N vs. 2N.
Topalov vs Karpov, 2000 
(D37) Queen's Gambit Declined, 74 moves, 1-0

Pawn endings against world champions? Get real! 5P vs. 5P.
Kasparov vs Bareev, 2001 
(C09) French, Tarrasch, Open Variation, Main line, 44 moves, 1-0

Stripunsky demonstrates pawnless Q vs. R ending.
Dreev vs Stripunsky, 2001 
(D12) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, 108 moves, 0-1

Experience trumps youth, R. vs. R, then pawn endgame.
F Vallejo Pons vs Korchnoi, 2002 
(C11) French, 63 moves, 0-1

Karpov never simplifies to lost or drawn pawn endings. 5Pvs.5P
Van Wely vs Karpov, 2003 
(E15) Queen's Indian, 54 moves, 0-1

Vlad the Inexorable. Q vs. 2R extravaganza.
Leko vs Kramnik, 2004  
(C42) Petrov Defense, 65 moves, 0-1

Numero Uno, for now. B vs. B (opposite colors).
Anand vs Carlsen, 2005 
(C42) Petrov Defense, 71 moves, 1-0

The future world champ? Stay tuned. B vs. B (opposite colors)
Carlsen vs Morozevich, 2007 
(E66) King's Indian, Fianchetto, Yugoslav Panno, 68 moves, 1-0

101 games

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