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John M Bruehl vs François André Philidor
Blindfold simul (1783), London, England, May-26
Bishop's Opening: General (C23)  ·  0-1


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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-12-03  Rookpawn: Philidor played this game blindfold. He supposedly could play up to three games simultaneously without looking at the board in any of them!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: 47.h6 was a blunder. After 47.Rd7+ Ke6 48.Rd8 I don't see any clear winning continuation for black. Nevertheless Philidor played the game excellently. If you know, that he was able to play such a game in a simul blindfolded, you can imagine slightly his real strenght.
Premium Chessgames Member
  lostemperor: This is a bishop <C23/24> opening from white's point of view but a real Philidor defense <C41> from black's. There is another beautiful game from Philidor vs Count Bruhl, where Philidor gave his queenknight for pawn and move (If you don't have it can send it
Premium Chessgames Member
  lostemperor: As if simultaneously and blindfold is not enough, Philidor also took the black pieces. Maybe he should also stand on his head while playing this simul. So as to give his opponents a slightly better chance.
Dec-19-03  Hidden Skillz: "47.h6 was a blunder. After 47.Rd7+ Ke6 48.Rd8 I don't see any clear winning continuation for black." well maybe u dun see but Rd1 is mate..
Jun-16-04  Jesuitic Calvinist: I really like this game. On top of the fact that he was playing three games simultaneously blindfold, he was also 57 years old and presumably well past his best by this time. The game also illustrates Philidor's understanding of various principles, for example the use of a minor piece (the bishop on a3) to help in the contest for the open file. In general, it is a pleasure to see Philidor gradually outplay his opponent in a "semi-ending" from around move 25.
Premium Chessgames Member
  who: <Hidden Skillz> without f3 Rd1 isn't mate, and if in Honza's line f3 is played white will play Rf8+ and then take the f3 pawn.
Sep-05-04  Knight13: Good enough for white.
Dec-21-04  fgh: Wow! Philidor's play in this game reminds me Nimzowitsch! Just look at his center or at the f5 bishop: Blockade!
Mar-03-05  Jaymthegenius: I say 4...f5?! is unsound, I dont care what anyone says. And 5...f4! and black has secured a nice space advantage, though I must admit the defensive technique back then was horrible ("defense was little understood before the 20th century, even by the best of players, as evidenced by the Kings Gambits success-DeFirmian) of course this was no KG game, but his quote applies here, nontheless. But how does Philidor know of the advantage of knight superior in closed possitions to bishop? This confuses me, as no endgame books were around then.
Mar-04-05  RisingChamp: That is hilarious evidence,because even in the 1960s Spassky and Bronstein had great success with the Kings Gambit.And Nigel Short Alexei Fedorov and others regularly beat people rated higher than DeFirmian with the Kings Gambit.Of course it is true that defense wasnt very well understood,but the Kings Gambit isnt about having some defensive technique and then you win.Well <Jaymthegenius> being a genius as u are you should have been able to work out that if the books exist now someone must have written them,and whoever wrote them must have actually figured out the information first.This is exactly what Philidor did.
Mar-04-05  Jaymthegenius: But in the kings gambit the white's pawnstructure tends to be weak and often neglected, and a space advantage doesnt seem feasable, though a3 followed by b4 with Bb2 could be playable after Nf3 to avoid the queen check, but blacks hold on the center and development after this (plus intact pawn structure) are huge advantages for black.
Premium Chessgames Member
  InspiredByMorphy: <Jaym> You provide no move numbers as usual. You simply continue to leave opinions instead of analysis.
Mar-05-05  RisingChamp: If the Kings Gambit were as simple as you suggest,there is no way world class players like Karpov,Anand,Bronstien,Tal and Fischr could lose against this,so I have no option but to regard your view as highly oversimplistic.In general terms,it is hard to defend the logic of the kings gambit because it just gives away a pawn and weakens the kingside,but in practice backed up by 6 centuries of theory,white does just fine.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ckr: Nice game by an old master demonstrating a very percise execution of advancing two connected center pawns for a win. I fine ending anyone today would be proud to have played. To all those that think these old timers knew nothing <Stick to checkers>
Sep-19-06  Philid0r: that was SO AWESOME. Is it me or has the pawn lost a lot of importance to the eyes of more recent masters? i always read "no more than 2 pawn moves in the opening"... philidor's main weapon is his pawn army, and indeed he was a genius to be able to invade the board like that... Is there any great player from Steinitz to today who uses pawns like that?
Premium Chessgames Member
  CapablancaFan: Didn't Philidor coin the phrase "pawns are the soul of chess" or something like that?
Premium Chessgames Member
  refutor: i like philidor's line v. the bishop's opening 1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 c6
Premium Chessgames Member
  gambitfan: After |1 e4 e5, 2 Bc4?!} is in my opinion a weak move which should be adequately punished...

2... ♘f6?! (see W So vs Fouad El Taher, 2006) is not an adequate "punishment" since it allows 3 ♘f3 and we reach by interversion of moves the classical Italian Opening...

Philidor's answer is definitely the best answer: 2... c6! (with the idea of the "liberating" move 3... d5!)

Best answer of White is 3 ♕e2 and then 3... d6 followed by ... f5!

Premium Chessgames Member
  gambitfan: pawns are the soul of chess!
Oct-12-07  wolfmaster: So was what Philidor believed.
Nov-30-07  nimh: Rybka 2.4 mp, AMD X2 2.01GHz, 10 min per move, threshold 0.33.

Bruehl 10 mistakes:
4.c3 0.03 (4.Nf3 0.40)
11.h3 -0.98 (11.f3 -0.34)
13.f4 -1.32 (13.Qd1 -0.87)
14.c4 -1.10 (14.Qf2 -0.76)
15.cxd5 -1.31 (15.Qf2 -0.79)
20.Rac1 -0.87 (20.Nxf5 -0.15)
22.Qg3+ -0.80 (22.Nxc4 -0.26)
23.Qxg7+ -1.63 (23.Qf2 -0.78)
25.g3 -1.36 (25.b3 -0.36)
47.h6 #10 (47.Rd7+ 0.00)

Philidor 9 mistakes:
10...Nbd7 -0.34 (10...0-0 -0.73)
13...h5 -0.76 (13...exf3 -1.32)
15...cxd5 -0.68 (15...Nxd5 -1.31)
19...g6 -0.15 (19...Bd7 -0.84)
20...Nc4 -0.35 (20...Bd7 -0.87)
24...bxc4 -0.36 (24...dxc4 -1.75)
25...Rab8 -0.72 (25...Rac8 -1.36)
26...Ba3 -0.35 (26...h4 -0.72)
30...Bb4 -0.17 (30...Rc1+ -0.82)

Jan-08-08  Kaspy2: Philodor's book "analysis of the chess game" is available as a reprint as of 2007. It contains many annotated games just as a modern book. I am still looking for the page with the statement about pawns & soul, which is always quoted by modern writers on pawn play (Kmoch, Baburin, Marovic, Orban, Nicolayczuk etc.).
Jan-29-08  wolfmaster: Bruehl was cramped throughout the game, and Philidor won the easy ending.
Premium Chessgames Member
  chessamateur: <Kaspy2> I don't think those were his exact words.

In his book he made the observation that 'Les pions sont l'ame du jeu' (the pawns are the life of the game). Over time this phrase has become known as "the pawns are the soul of chess." which were not his exact words.

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