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Gyula Breyer
Number of games in database: 204
Years covered: 1911 to 1921
Overall record: +80 -56 =44 (56.7%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games
      Based on games in the database; may be incomplete.
      24 exhibition games, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Ruy Lopez (24) 
    C82 C90 C88 C87 C83
 Queen's Pawn Game (19) 
    D00 A40 D05 D01 A45
 French Defense (14) 
    C11 C01 C14 C12 C13
 French (9) 
    C11 C12 C13 C10 C00
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (9) 
    C90 C88 C87 C84
 King's Gambit Declined (6) 
    C30 C31
With the Black pieces:
 French Defense (17) 
    C10 C14 C01 C11 C13
 Ruy Lopez (11) 
    C68 C63 C77 C82 C78
 French (8) 
    C10 C11 C13
 Queen's Pawn Game (8) 
    D02 A40 D05 D04 A46
 Sicilian (6) 
    B21 B39 B73 B34 B20
 Slav (5) 
    D10 D15 D13
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Breyer vs J Esser, 1917 1-0
   K Havasi vs Breyer, 1917 0-1
   Mieses vs Breyer, 1914 0-1
   Lasker vs Breyer, 1911 0-1
   Breyer vs Tarrasch, 1920 1-0
   Breyer vs K Havasi, 1918 1-0
   Breyer vs Tarrasch, 1914 1-0
   B Kostic vs Breyer, 1920 1/2-1/2
   K Sterk vs Breyer, 1913 0-1
   S Von Freymann vs Breyer, 1911 1/2-1/2

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Berlin (1920)
   Baden-bei-Wien (1914)
   Mannheim (1914)
   Scheveningen (1913)
   Bad Pistyan (1912)
   18th DSB Kongress (1912)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   1914 Baden-bei-Wien by TheFocus
   Breyer in Baden-bei-Wein 1914 by TheFocus
   Breyer in Breslau DSB Kongress 1912 by TheFocus
   Breyer in Bad Pistyan 1912 by TheFocus
   Breyer in Temesvar 1912 by TheFocus
   Scheveningen 1913 by Phony Benoni
   Breyer in Scheveningen 1913 by TheFocus
   Breyer in DSB Kongress Mannheim 1914 by TheFocus
   Breyer in Vienna 1921 by TheFocus
   Junge and Breyer: Great Talents Cut Short by Runemaster
   Breyer in Cologne A 1911 by TheFocus
   Breyer in Berlin 1920 by TheFocus
   Berlin 1920 by sneaky pete
   Breyer in Decebren 1913 by TheFocus

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(born Apr-30-1893, died Nov-09-1921, 28 years old) Hungary

[what is this?]
Gyula (Julius) Breyer was born in Budapest. At Cologne 1911 he was only 6th but in the Hungarian Championship at Temesvar (Timișoara) 1912 he finished 1st ahead of Lajos Asztalos, Zoltan von Balla, Kornel Havasi and Richard Reti. After the First World War at Berlin (1920) he was 1st ahead of Efim Bogoljubov, Savielly Tartakower, Reti, Geza Maroczy, Jacques Mieses, Siegbert Tarrasch, Friedrich Saemisch, Paul Saladin Leonhardt, and Rudolf Spielmann. A leading hypermodern, he made contributions to opening theory and would have undoubtedly gone further had heart disease not cut his career short. He died in Bratislava in 1921.

Wikipedia article: Gyula Breyer

 page 1 of 9; games 1-25 of 204  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. Breyer vs Ziolo 1-048 1911 Keulen AB15 Caro-Kann
2. J Szekely vs Breyer  1-022 1911 BudapestC10 French
3. Breyer vs Chodera  1-028 1911 Cologne-AC82 Ruy Lopez, Open
4. G Nyholm vs Breyer 1-049 1911 Keulen AC10 French
5. F Chalupetzky vs Breyer  1-044 1911 BudapestD61 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox, Rubinstein Attack
6. Reti vs Breyer 1-046 1911 BudapestD31 Queen's Gambit Declined
7. J Barton vs Breyer  0-126 1911 Keulen AC10 French
8. S Von Freymann vs Breyer  ½-½39 1911 Cologne-AD02 Queen's Pawn Game
9. Breyer vs Z von Balla 0-135 1911 BudapestC77 Ruy Lopez
10. Breyer vs N Tereshchenko  ½-½33 1911 Cologne-AC70 Ruy Lopez
11. Breyer vs M Brody  0-126 1911 BudapestC01 French, Exchange
12. Rotlewi vs Breyer  ½-½31 1911 Cologne-AC84 Ruy Lopez, Closed
13. M Lowcki vs Breyer  1-041 1911 Cologne-AD61 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox, Rubinstein Attack
14. Lasker vs Breyer 0-125 1911 Simul, 30bC21 Center Game
15. Breyer vs Hromadka  1-049 1911 Cologne-AC78 Ruy Lopez
16. Tarrasch vs Breyer  1-061 1912 18th DSB KongressC78 Ruy Lopez
17. Breyer vs Z von Balla  ½-½55 1912 TemesvarC50 Giuoco Piano
18. Breyer vs Przepiorka  1-042 1912 18th DSB KongressB13 Caro-Kann, Exchange
19. Breyer vs Leonhardt  1-051 1912 Bad PistyanC88 Ruy Lopez
20. Burn vs Breyer  ½-½61 1912 18th DSB KongressC11 French
21. Breyer vs Teichmann  0-128 1912 Bad PistyanC46 Three Knights
22. Breyer vs G Foldes  1-056 1912 TemesvarC10 French
23. J Szekely vs Breyer  ½-½44 1912 TemesvarC50 Giuoco Piano
24. E Cohn vs Breyer  0-163 1912 18th DSB KongressC14 French, Classical
25. Breyer vs Spielmann 0-127 1912 Bad PistyanC82 Ruy Lopez, Open
 page 1 of 9; games 1-25 of 204  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Breyer wins | Breyer loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: R.I.P. Gyula Breyer. Thanks for the games, the theories and the ice cream!
Premium Chessgames Member
  thomastonk: In a Mednis/Teschner book it is stated that Breyer introduced the Breyer system in the Ruy Lopez (9.. Nb8) at the end of the 19th century. Hmm, this would mean he suggested it before he was 8 years old?! The German wikipedia entry on Breyer provides 1911 as the year of his suggestion, but without giving a source. Does anybody know when and how he suggested or played this line?
Nov-10-12  SimonWebbsTiger: <Thomastonk>

a bit of a mystery because I have not found any reference to the actual source game. It is not here in cg. The ECO code for the Breyer Ruy Lopez is C94~C95.

It appears to be common to say the retreat was introduced by Breyer to avoid the problems Black often gets with his knight offside at a5 in the Chigorin lines, that Spassky loved to play it, etc. yet nobody seems to mention the year or precise game.

I wish I had a good book on Breyer! Could be it was a suggestion because Breyer was also a noted analyst.

A little chess mystery....

Premium Chessgames Member
  thomastonk: <SimonWebbsTiger> Thank you very much for your reply. Your observations coincide with mine.

Maybe it's not a game we look for. Breyer had an obscure magazine for brain sports, which appeared with only five issues. Or he made the suggestion in an analysis. But I think that it is not the first time, this little mystery appears ...

There is a book on Breyer by Bottlik. It is written in German, and so I should consult it.

PS: Do you know that I played twice with <Simon> himself?

Premium Chessgames Member
  parisattack: I was told the suggestion was in a Kagan's - but, alas, not in any of the issues I have.

As I recall, Bottlik cites a number of Breyer's opening contributions including 9...Nb8 but offers nothing further.

That book also has a solid bibliography of Breyer's writings for anyone able to hunt down obscure Hungarian chess periodicals such as Magyar Sakkujsag and Magyar Sakkvilag.

There is another tome (also in German) on Breyer but I cannot find it at the moment, either.

Premium Chessgames Member
  parisattack: I checked the commemorative piece on Breyer (by Bottlik) in Magyar Sakkelet, March 1993, and - tho my Hungarian isn't what it should be ;) - I don't see the variation in question mentioned. It does note Breyer's variation of the Accelerated Dragon (Kostics-Breyer, Goteberg 1920).

Someone with the early years of Kagan's out there in land?

Nov-10-12  Olavi: It is perhaps worth noting that Tartakower doesn't mention the variation in Die hypermoderne Schachpartie (1925), if it's not very well hidden, otherwise the book is a more or less a complete compendium of hypermodern openings of the day.
Nov-11-12  SimonWebbsTiger: Sounds like the origins of the Breyer Lopez and its history is a worthy question for Chess Notes by Winter.
Nov-11-12  SimonWebbsTiger: ps. <thomastank>

glad you met Simon. As you can no doubt attest, he was a fine player OTB and at CC and a very nice person to boot. No surprises which book was one of the first I read as a child and continue to love!

Premium Chessgames Member
  thomastonk: <SimonWebbsTiger> Well, before one should forward the question to Mr Winter, a few more sources should be checked. <Olavi> had the good idea to check "Die hypermoderne Schachpartie". I am going to check Bilguer's Handbuch, 8th edition and a few other books, e.g. Reti's books. And maybe <parisattack> is right, and someone provides a Kagan source within a few days.

PS: I met Simon at cc, and he was a very nice person! Nevertheless, we had a problem in our second game. I forced more or less an early draw with the white pieces, because I had no idea how to play for an advantage. I spent about six weeks with the position, because I didn't liked this kind of draw. When he repitition was made, Simon asked: "Why do you play chess? Because of your rating?" and something like that. Then I explained that I analysed deeply the position and so on, and so on. At the end I added: "and I was invited to this tournament because of my rating!" Then he replied: "I still count you as a friend."

Premium Chessgames Member
  parisattack: Yes, a topic for Mr. Winter! I checked several Ruy Lopez books - three also cite the 1911 date - but no source. Even that would be a stretch as Breyer didn't seem to have the hypermodern revelation until 1915 or so...

No luck either in the Streeter manuscript. It does have some games not in the database or in Bottlik. I will endeavor to send them to someday soon.

I am still guessing an early Kagan's - probably the Schachkatalog as Schachnachrichten began about the time Breyer passed (1921).

Premium Chessgames Member
  thomastonk: <parisattack: Yes, a topic for Mr. Winter.> I think we have to complete our homework first.

<parisattack: As I recall, Bottlik cites a number of Breyer's opening contributions including 9...Nb8 but offers nothing further.> Bottlik offers a lot of information on 9.. Nb8 on page 12. In brief: according to him, neither he nor other researches could ever find Breyer's article, which was cited from memory by Hans Mueller in Schach-Echo 1955, p 247.

To be continued.

Premium Chessgames Member
  thomastonk: <Breyer Variation in the Ruy López> Ivan Bottlik 's book on Breyer and his contribution in "Magyar Sakktörténet", vol.3, p 221, describe the information sketched above: Hans Mueller in Schach-Echo 1955, p 247 quotes from memory a manuscript of Breyer and explained several of his ideas, one of them being 9.. Nb8. Moreover, according to Bottlik there is no trace in Breyer's known writings. He assumes that the manuscript is probably lost (like Breyer's book).

The subject was considered and described this way already by Mr Winter in C.N.s 1939 and 2004 (see Winter's book "Kings, Commoners and Knaves", p 150).

The earliest games with 9.. Nb8 in several databases are from 1954, and the variation became very popular already the next year. Max Euwe published in "Schach-Archiv", October 1955 his first analysis of the new line. He explained the idea like Mueller did, and gave a reference to Mueller for the relation to Breyer. In 1956, Euwe published in Schach-Archiv three more contributions on this line.

My personal impression is: Bottlik is reliable and what he explained is still the state of the art. In particular, I see currently no reason to submit the question again to Mr Winter.

<parisattack> Can you please mention those books giving the 1911 date. Maybe this provides a new aspect. Thank you in advance.

Nov-12-12  Olavi: In the Intro of <L.S. Blackstock's Ruy Lopeaz: Breyer System (1976)> the editor O'Donnell suggests <Becsi Magyar Ujsag> as the most likely source for further historical research. There's no mention of 1911 but the back cover says that Blackstock published two previous works on the Breyer.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thomastonk: Thank you very much, <Olavi>! Bottlik gives a lot of references to <Bécsi Magyar Újság>, and so it seems that he has checked this source.
Apr-30-13  brankat: R.I.P. master Breyer.
Jun-26-13  KlingonBorgTatar: Sometime ago, I read somewhere that Breyer invented this combined maneuver of pawn to R4 then p - R5 , then N(B3) - R4 to N6. (I am using the old English Descriptive notation as Breyer may have been white or black, or may have done this in the Q's or K's wing) .I am in the process of searching his <cg> collection and would like to ask if someone can point me to that game if that game really existed. My interest in Breyer lies more in his novel positional moves, retrograde moves, guerilla tactics, trench warfare, maneuvering behind the frontline, and sudden explosive conversions of the closed game to an open one.Anyone know of games along these lines aside from the above Notable Games?

Thanks on advance! :-)

Premium Chessgames Member
  parisattack: Hi <KlingonBorgTatar>

I'll check the Streeter/Buschke manuscript, see if I can find that maneuver in any games. Did you find any here in the database? I know it occurs in the Sokolsky but not sure what other openings would qualify.

I have a relative of a local Hungarian friend who is (as time permits) doing some research on Breyer out of Budapest - newspapers, periodicals, ancestry. I would still very much like to see a good Breyer book in English!

(I read your Profile; seems we have a lot in common, chessically.)

If you haven't already - check out Leonid Stein's games. I call his style 'dynamodern' - dynamic with a shot of hypermodernism.

Dec-23-13  Karpova: Winter tournament (probably 1915) of the Budapest Chess Club:

1. Jul. Breyer 7.0
2. Havasi 6.0
3. S. Barasz 5.5
4-5. J. Gajdos 5.0
4-5. L. Merenyi 5.0
6. L. Zobel 3.5
7. J. Szivos 3.0
8. L. Seböck 1.0
9. B. Krivoss 0.0

All prizes taken together were 815 K, but half of that sum was donated to the Red Cross.

Source: Page 74 of the March-April 1915 'Wiener Schachzeitung'

Premium Chessgames Member
  parisattack: The only Breyer-Havasi 1915 I show in the Streeter/Buschke manuscript is the consultation game they played together -

Breyer / A Havasi vs Asztalos / Barasz, 1915

Budapest 02-13-15. Perhaps around the time of the tournament?

Jan-23-14  Karpova: II. Hungarian Chess Congress, Temesvar, 1912

Mixed Master tournament, 15 rounds, single round robin:

1. Breyer 10.5
2. Asztalos 9.5
3-4. von Balla 9.0
3-4. Merenyi Junior 9.0
5. Tyroler 8.5
6. Mayer 8.0
7-8. Szekely 7.5
7-8. Barasz 7.5
9. K Havasi 7.0
10. Sterk 6.5
11-12. Reti 6.0
11-12. Földes 6.0
13. Dalmy 4.0
14-15. Pesitz 3.0
14-15. B Steiner 3.0

Prizes (<Kronen>): Breyer 500, Asztalos 400, von Balla and Merenyi junior share 300 + 200, Tyroler 150, Mayer 100, Szekely and Barasz share 80 + 50.

Breyer scored +7 -0 =7 and was leading the event from start to finish. Dr. Asztalos scored +6 -1 =7, von Balla +6 -2 =6 and Merenyi Junior +7 -3 =4.

The Master tournament commenced on August 10 and almost all of the best Hungarian chessplayers participated. Exceptions were Maroczy (who had retired from chess and back then it looked as if he would never return, organising and writing on chess instead. He would make a comeback after WWI), Forgacs (professional duties), and Dr. Brody got married.

Dr. Asztalos also became Master of the Hungarian Chess Federation (<Er erlangte hiermit auch die Meisterwürde des Ungarischen Schachbundes.>). Merenyi junior only shared 3rd-4th place, although he was in 2nd place for most of the tournament - but then he lost 3 in a row in rounds 11, 12 and 13. The good performances of Szekely, Barasz, Sterk and Reti were taken as a sign that Hungary had many good talents.

Source: Pages 271-272 of the September-Oktober 1912 'Wiener Schachzeitung'

Premium Chessgames Member For a guy who said "after the first move 1.e4 White's game is in the last throes" he sure opened a lot of games with the e-pawn.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: It is a pity so few of Breyer's games are available here.

Must be because he began making ice cream and could not always play in chess tournaments.

Premium Chessgames Member
  PhilFeeley: Wikipedia quotes Barden (1963) giving the 1911 date for the Breyer variation:

Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Happy birthday, Gyula Breyer.

I may write a book about you.

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