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Nicolas Rossolimo vs Efim Bogoljubov
Oldenburg (1949), Oldenburg GER, rd 13, Jun-28
French Defense: Tarrasch Variation. Modern System (C03)  ·  1-0


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sac: 33.Nxh5+ PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-28-04  lao tzu: i worked for Rossolimo and his wife in their chess shop (in greenwich village) in the 1970s. he used to have large diagrams of critical positions from his best games all around the shop...along with warnings about playing blitz and 2 very vicious dogs! wish i could say the position after 32...Nc4 was one of the posted diagrams but my memory is not that good - still, im sure Nicolas was proud of this one- and with good reason- 33.Nxh5+! i dont have fritz up and running but would like to hear what the silicon monster says about this shot- anyone? thx
Aug-28-04  Lawrence: <lao tzu>, one thing I love about <chessgames> is when people like you can give us these personal anecdotes. Thanks.

33.Nxh5+ was a jolly old error according to Junior 8, eval -1.91, the best move was 33.Rab1, eval -0.91. (7 min. search)

Aug-28-04  ughaibu: In shogi they call such a move a shoubute, a fighting move, in a bad position one tries to make difficulties for one's opponent, after all a game can only be lost 0-1.
Aug-28-04  Lawrence: <lao tzu>, the story we all heard is that Rossolimo fell down a flight of stairs and bashed his head and died. Can you throw any further light on this? Had he been drinking? Did he have a bad leg? Suicide? Really bad eyesight? Was he pushed? etc.

After 22 min. Junior now makes it -1.94 and -0.94, not much change from earlier.

Premium Chessgames Member
  crafty: 33. ♘xh5+ gxh5 34. ♘f5+ ♔f8 35. b3 ♘b2 36. ♕h4 ♖e6   (eval -2.99; depth 16 ply; 1500M nodes)
Aug-28-04  lao tzu: <lawrence>
i was surfing around looking for a pic of rossolimo today- and in my futile attempt saw at this:Nicolas Rossolimo, American grandmaster, fell down a flight of stairs at his chess club in New York and died of head injuries in 1975 at the age of 65. i emailed them with what i'd heard from him wife at the time- that Nicolas had just finished giving a lesson at a nyc apartment (the chess shop was on a ground floor) and hm...drunk as usual, fell down the students stairwell and died. i loved this old coot and hesitate to even repeat this ... but this is what she told me- did she lie? not impossible given their strained relationship.
Aug-29-04  yukhtman: <lao tzu>, I walked into the shop (Bleekerstreet?)in september 1970, and remember that a French lady told me that the grandmaster was working as a taxi-driver. Is this a true or a false memory of mine?
Aug-29-04  Lawrence: Hi <yukhtman>, welcome to the amazing <> from all of us. <lao tzu> will confirm, but I think it's well known that Rossolimo drove a taxi. Today a person of his talent would be able to make a decent living as a chess player, but that wasn't the case when he was alive.
Premium Chessgames Member
  IMlday: It's all relative eh.. I'd rather fall down drunk and die suddenly than go through some debilitating disease for monthes. Rossolimo was just true to his French surrealist roots, but he might have enjoyed living to see how popular his 3.Bb5 anti-Sicilian variation became.. I only visited his Greenwich Village chess cafe once, circa 1964, hoping to glimpse painter Marcel Duchamp, but mid-afternoon the place was almost deserted.
Aug-29-04  lao tzu: Rossolimo was born in Kiev of Greek parents who moved to France, winning the Paris championship ten times, then to the U.S. where he won the U.S. Open in 1955 (a new Buick). He made a record of Russian folk songs, earned a brown belt in judo, and was a *taxi driver in Paris and New York City. He played on three U.S. Olympic teams and was on the French Olympic team in 1972.
Aug-29-04  SBC: <lao tzu>

<i was surfing around looking for a pic of rossolimo today>

A couple of photos here:

Aug-29-04  Lawrence: <Sarah>, you continue to amaze us all.
Aug-29-04  lao tzu: <Sarah>
many heartfelt
(btw, i put ur site in my favorites)
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Morning: I also added Sarah's page to my Bookmarks. Nice work!

As for the game itself, I can't blame Rossolimo for being so proud of this one. Finding the initial sac isn't so tough, but finding the "quiet" manouvers which follow is. How could he have foreseen his 41st move, forcing Black to exchange the Re3, the only piece holding the defense together? As great as some of his mating combinations were, such speculative sacrifices are even more impressive.

Oct-30-05  Bishoprick: Besides being a talented chessplayer, linguiest and musician, Nicolas was a thoroughly decent human being. He was never above playing anyone, and although I lost many, many informal games to him, one of my fondest chess memories is getting a draw against him in an Italian Game. Drunk or sober, he was one of the true gentlemen of chess.
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