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|Mar-04-13|| ||FSR: Crazy Curt. According to Chessmetrics, he was ranked as high as #4 in the world. http://www.chessmetrics.com/cm/CM2/... But he's famous today for stalking out of his game against Steinitz at Hastings 1895 (Steinitz's last great game) and defenestrating himself to death. He was the inspiration for Nabokov's novel <The Defense>. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curt_v...|
|Mar-04-13|| ||Abdel Irada: <defenestrating himself to death>|
That sounds rather an awkward way to go, as if he'd been unsuccessful in his first attempt and had to go on repeating it until he died.
|Mar-04-13|| ||FSR: <Abdel Irada> AFAIK, he succeeded on his first try.|
|Mar-04-13|| ||Abdel Irada: One would hope so.|
|Mar-04-13|| ||JimNorCal: <waddayaplay> "Prior to that, von Bardleben had lived well off a substantial inheritance."|
Ed Lasker's book "Chess Secrets" gives a conflicting portrait. He says that when von Bardeleben had any money at all, you would see him sipping good wine. But that implies he sometimes was not in funds. Also, Lasker heard rumors (he does not confirm or deny them) that vB would marry then quickly divorce ladies for sums of cash. This was because the ladies wanted to have an aristocratic surname ("von").
Perhaps at a later time, vB came into an inheritance--I'm just posting what's in the Chess Secrets book, not disputing what you say (of which I know nothing).
|Mar-04-13|| ||JimNorCal: Winter quotes a section from the Ed Lasker book.
Scroll down to item 5999.
From pages 20-21 of Chess Secrets I Learned from the Masters by Edward Lasker (New York, 1951), in the section on Curt von Bardeleben:
‘He always wore a black cut-away suit of dubious vintage. Apparently he could never spare enough money to buy a new suit, although I learned one day that at fairly regular intervals he received comparatively large sums – from one to several thousand marks – through the simple expedient of marrying, and shortly after divorcing, some lady who craved the distinction of his noble name and was willing to pay for it. Unfortunately, when he received his reward, it was usually far exceeded by the amount of the debts he had accumulated since his last divorce. Evil tongues had it that the number of the ladies involved in these brief marital interludes had grown so alarmingly that they could easily have made up a Sultan’s harem.’
|Mar-04-13|| ||waustad: Ah yes, "defenestration." As usual in English the high falutin' term is latinate, unlike the Norse "window."|
|Mar-04-13|| ||Caissanist: Of course the reason for Winter's posting of the story is because he is looking for "independent corroboration". There are a <lot> of stories in Chess Secrets for which there is no independent corroboration--Winter should do a page just of those.|
|Mar-04-13|| ||Phony Benoni: So if I trade in my Microsoft operating system for Apple, is that defenestration?|
|Mar-04-13|| ||waustad: <phony>No, but for me it was a good idea. Now that I'm retired Windoze might work, but their interaction with the UNIX environment in which I worked was horrible. I confess that when I use Linux I'm just as irritated as I am using the WinDOS products, when dealing with word processing and such. They seem to be into keeping up with the most irritating features. I'm also often angry with Apple, but nowhere near as much as the other operating systems I've used. That said, they do charge more for hardware and they do orphan one way too quickly.|
|Mar-04-13|| ||waustad: <PB>BTW, It was a good joke!|
|Mar-04-13|| ||Abdel Irada: <waustad>: Interesting. I'd assumed "window" would be of Saxon origin, but you're right: It's from the Old Norse "vindauga" (/vindr/ [wind] + /auga/ [eye]).|
Thank you for the etymology lesson. :-)
|Jan-31-16|| ||TheFocus: Rest in peace, Curt von Bardeleben!!|
|Jan-31-16|| ||john barleycorn: <TheFocus> are you sure that he has not left the venue?|
|Mar-04-16|| ||steinitzfan: I think we all fear to -- like von Bardeleben -- achieve immortality for a game that we lost. However, he won games from the best. And he must have been pretty smart to know he was lost in that Steinitz Immortal game.|
|Mar-04-16|| ||Sally Simpson: Hi steinitzfan,
Would you really mind losing to a wonderful combination that you know is going to make the 'play and win' combo books.
Yes losing is always bitter but if the opponent excelled themselves by playing brilliantly just to beat you then there is no reason to live in fear.
I'd rather lose such a way than have a totally won game and blow it by blundering. I've lost on both sides of this situation, the lose by blundering is far worse. You cannot forget them. They jerk you out of your sleep that night.
|Mar-04-16|| ||keypusher: <Sally Simpson: Hi steinitzfan,
Would you really mind losing to a wonderful combination that you know is going to make the 'play and win' combo books.>|
On that point, Kieseritzsky had a great deal to do with immortalizing the Immortal Game.
<A man of "livid complexion, with melancholic and afflicted appearance," he was nevertheless a cultured chess writer, as his brief period of Editorship of "La Regence" shows, and it is to his lasting credit that he (the loser) saved the Immortal Game for posterity by publishing it in the July 1851 number.>
Lionel Adalbert Bagration Felix Kieseritsky
|Mar-04-16|| ||dark.horse: The film https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_L... was based on Nabokov's book The Defense, based on the life of von Bardeleben.|
|Mar-05-16|| ||Sally Simpson: ...and Dark Horse is a film based on the life of Maori speed-chess coach and player Genesis Potini.|
Here is a trailor of the film.
Not to be confused...as my family were when selecting my 2015 Christmas present....with Dark Horse the film all about a horse called Dream Alliance.
Both films are not too bad, enjoyed them both.
|Mar-04-17|| ||TheFocus: Happy birthday, Curt von Bardeleben.|
|Mar-04-17|| ||Petrosianic: And many more.|
|Apr-17-17|| ||hudapri: Hilarious @PhonyBenoni|
|Jul-08-17|| ||Chessical: Herr Bardeleben smiled softly, and pensively stroked his silken beard. I have the greatest respect for Mr. Blackburne's opinion, but I do not think with him in this," he said. “Chess is very much a matter of idiosyncrasy. A patient, cautious man will play a slow, cautious game, while an impulsive, eager man will play impulsively and eagerly. We have both kinds of players in Germany, just as you have them here. The brilliant player, whose game is replete with strategy and far-sighted combination, is sought for and admired in Germany quite as much as anywhere else. But, after all, a wise caution is the very essential of chess that is, if you are playing scientific chess, and not merely a skittle game. If you are incautious, you certainly lose if you are cautious, and, at the same time, can play, you stand a chance of winning. I do not see how you can divorce the quality of caution from an intellectual struggle such as the game of chess really is." |
"You regard chess as an intellectual contest that is, when the players are well-matched?"
“Oh, certainly a keenly intellectual struggle."
“Well, now, what is your attitude towards chess as an intellectual discipline I know many people who hold that it would prove a useful substitute for mathematics in schools. Conceive the joy of the present generation of school-boys if they were allowed to play chess daily instead of grinding away at Euclid?”
“Yes, yes, I can imagine that they would be willing enough to make the exchange," returned Herr Bardeleben, with a twinkle in his eye but I do not think it would prove to their advantage. In the first place, there is a very great danger involved in learning chess. The game has an almost fatal fascination for those who give themselves up to it, and, if acquired before the habit of self-control is developed, may have the most disastrous consequences and, as an intellectual discipline, chess falls immeasurably short of mathematics if, indeed, there be any comparison between the two in that mathematics deal with fixed and definite propositions, while chess is the most plastic of games, and contains very little that can be regarded as fixed or definite. In chess you not only calculate the moves, but you base a large part of your reckoning upon the character of your opponent. A chess-player who meets another for the first time waits till he discovers what manner of man it is who is sitting opposite him, whether he be patient, or impulsive, or bad-tempered, or nervous, and so on. This human element is not to be found in mathematics. No, the matter is not worth discussing. Let the school-boy keep to his Euclid, and leave chess severely alone. But," continued Herr Bardeleben, after a pause, you must not think that I attach no importance whatever to the mental exercise involved in playing chess. It is a great and noble game, and develops the mental powers to some degree. But that degree of improvement is hardly appreciable by any known test."
“Whom do you regard as the greatest of living chess-players?”
“Ah now you want to get at my inner consciousness? I shall not say I have no opinion on the matter that I care to give expression to. But in five years' time, or less, one of two names will be pre-eminent. There are two men in the running for the world's championship, Lasker and Tarrasch, both wonderful players, of infinite resource and undoubted genius. You must be content with that declaration. The championship lies with one or other of those players."
“And how do English chess-players stand?”
“Oh, very well indeed. You have some really great players, and, for the past few years, English players have scored many successes, but the successes were not of the brilliant order, if I may so express myself. There was no manifestation of genius, no lightning-like revelation of capacity. Perhaps, after all, the day of genius at chess has gone by."
|Jul-08-17|| ||Chessical: Interview with Von Bardeleben in 1895. The source is "The Sketch" newspaper of Wednesday 14th August 1895:|
"A CHESS CHAMPION. The chess-player is not particularly familiar to the public except on such rare occasions as the tournament which is now being played at Hastings, in which Herr Bardeleben is taking part.
"When did you begin to play chess?" asked a Sketch representative. Mein Herr thought awhile, and then answered, “At about my tenth year. I soon grew very fond of the game, and nearly all the time I could spare from my lessons was given to chess. Yes, as you say, I, like others, have some wasted hours to look back upon. But school-boys will waste their time, whatever you may do, and, even regarded as a mode of squandering precious moments, chess has its compensations."
Well, and after these profligate school-days of yours?”
“ Then I went to the University of Leipsic, to study law. I am afraid, however, that I gave more time to gambits than to the quodlibets of the law. At the University I met a great many strong players, and, of course, my game improved immensely. At last chess obtained so strong a hold over me that I abandoned the law altogether.
“To become a chess-player?”
“Well, yes, I think so. I followed my bent, perhaps the wisest thing to do, on the whole. When at Leipzig I often played with Zukertort, but they were hardly serious games."
“When did you first come to London?”
“I think it was in 1883, if I remember rightly. I was then twenty- two years of age, and was bold enough to measure myself against some of the leading men in the chess world of the day. I played with McDonnell, Gunsberg, and Fisher, and gained the first prize in the Vizianagram Tournament, which was held at the Criterion. Young man as I was, it was sheer impudence on my part to win the first prize over the heads, of so many older players," laughed Mein Herr; "but, you see, I hadn't been a devotee of the game for nothing. In the same year I played in the Nuremberg Tournament against Blackburne, Winawer, and some other masters, and was lucky enough to win the fifth prize. In 1887 I won the first prize at the Frankfort Tournament, and in the following year, at the Bradford Tournament, I managed to divide the third and fourth prizes. But you don't want me, I hope, to run through the whole of my career. Let us talk of chess, the great game, and not of the mere men who play it."
“Willingly. First of all, let me ask you a question relative to the respective styles of English and German chess."
“Are there such styles?” asked Herr Bardeleben innocently. “Chess is pretty much the same game all the world over."
“Well, your great opponent, Blackburne, said, the other day, that there was a marked difference betwixt the English and the German styles of chess that, in short, the German style was laborious, pedantic, and tenacious of small advantages, to the exclusion of great combination while the English style was that of brilliancy, dash, and smart combination."
|Jul-08-17|| ||MissScarlett: Falkirk Herald, February 27th 1924, p.3:
<"Yorks. Observer Budget" says:- “A Berlin messays says that the mystery surrounding the death of Curt von Bardeleben, who was found dead, with a crushed skull, in the courtyard of the house where he lived, is not yet cleared up, and the belief that a crime had been committed is gaining ground. Since 1919 Bardeleben had lived in a boarding-house in the Pallaestrasse, Berlin. On the morning of his death several people saw him leave the house, and a few hours later the porter found him on the stone pavement in the yard. It was thought that he had committed suicide by throwing himself from the window of his room on the second floor. There was, however, no motive for such an act, as he was in good health, and by no means poor, and the police, who are investigating the matter, have dropped the theory of suicide. Bardeleben, who was born in Berlin, was 63 years old, and unmarried.”>
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