Members · Prefs · Laboratory · Collections · Openings · Endgames · Sacrifices · History · Search Kibitzing · Kibitzer's Café · Chessforums · Tournament Index · Players · Kibitzing

Donald Byrne vs Robert James Fischer
"The Game of the Century" (game of the day Mar-09-2013)
Third Rosenwald Trophy (1956), New York, NY USA, rd 8, Oct-17
Gruenfeld Defense: Three Knights Variation. Hungarian Attack (D92)  ·  0-1



Click Here to play Guess-the-Move
Given 257 times; par: 76 [what's this?]

explore this opening
find similar games 6 more D Byrne/Fischer games
sac: 17...Be6 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

TIP: All games have a Kibitzer's Corner provided for community discussion. If you have a question or comment about this game, register a free account so you can post there.

PGN Viewer:  What is this?
For help with this chess viewer, please see the Olga Chess Viewer Quickstart Guide.


Donald Byrne vs Robert James Fischer (1956) The Game of the Century
Cover of Chess Review, December 1956.

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 59 OF 59 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Sep-20-18  karik: Is the photo from the actual game?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: regarding the picture, this was discussed here in D Byrne vs Fischer, 1956 (kibitz #1275)

which in turn led to.

Above is the only picture showing Fischer during the Game of the Century. Incredibly it was taken while he was pondering the position just before the queen sacrifice. The picture appeared on page 11 of the Lima News, Feb. 12, 1957, and also appeared in the Hammond Times of Feb. 24, 1957.

Premium Chessgames Member
  PhilFeeley: Odd that such photo would be allowed so late in the game. It would never be allowed now - except with live video.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: < The picture appeared on page 11 of the Lima News, Feb. 12, 1957, and also appeared in the Hammond Times of Feb. 24, 1957.>

The earliest example I can find is February 11th in the <Index Journal> (Greenwood, S.C.) but it features numerous times in smaller American papers over the next few weeks, always accompanying the same Associated Press report.

Sep-21-18  karik: So the Dec 1956 issue of Chess Review wasn't published before Feb 11 1957?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: <Sally Simpson> Thanks for posting this from the 1958 Time magazine:

<"In the cosmopolitan cant of chess players, it is legend that masters of the game are all meshuga—Yiddish for a little batty.

But when they talk of Brooklyn's Bobby Fischer, the newly crowned U.S. champion, the kibitzers are moved to uncommon awe.

Bobby, they declare, is ganz meshuga, which is to say that he is quite addled.

Though he celebrated his 15th birthday only last week, he already shows all the marks of the great grand masters of one of the oldest, most intricate games known to man.

A floppy, abrupt young gangle-shanks, he stumbles through the physical world of school and subways and summer vacations in a tangle of arms and legs not quite under control.

But in the neatly ordered empire of the chessboard, he moves with vast precision. Swiftly he picks his way among the possibilities; haughtily he sidesteps the traps.

Experts compare his aggressive, scientific style to that of Russia's famed Alekhine, his flair for combinations to the touch of the U.S. master, Morphy.

He eclipsed such comparative greybeards as Samuel Reshevsky, 46, and Arthur Bisguier, 28, to win the U.S. title.">

The first thing I thought of was the extreme Swedish metal band, Meshuggah.

The writing is different than you might find this day and age. A bit more sophisticated.

I didn't realize that Fischer was already thought of as "meshuga" at the young age of 15. I assumed that came much later in his career.

<A floppy, abrupt young gangle-shanks...> What a terrifically visual description; and then to contrast that with his sublime chess piece movement is just good writing.

Poor ol' Bisguier, to be called a greybeard at 28, even if "comparatively".

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: Hi Check It Out,

It is good writing and reading. I read most of the whole magazine on other subjects. Excellent.

I also enjoy reading the Victorian and Edwardian chess notations as well. They seem to have a charm all of their own and of course 'Three Men in a Boat' (pub 1889) is one of the two non-chess books I have read thrice. (Catch 22 is the other.)

These days text speech is murdering the language and although I use 'sacced' I still shudder and look over my shoulder for my English teacher every time I type it.

Not yet used sac-bak (to return material) but I will one day.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: < So the Dec 1956 issue of Chess Review wasn't published before Feb 11 1957?>

Chess periodicals do have a reputation for unreliability of issue, but no, the AP article was evidently inspired by <Chess Review>. They cite Kmoch's 'game of the century' tag, and he's quoted, <For his age, I don't think there is any better chess player in the world. He is a genuine prodigy and one of the best players in our club. [...] The outlook is brilliant. If he continues to proceed the way he has the past year or two, he's likely to become one of the greatest players of all time.>

As to who took the photo, and who now holds the picture rights, one can only guess.

Dec-19-18  MrJafari: I found a last move to be part of the game of the century!: 41.B.a3!?
Feb-12-19  cliffordagoodman: The game of the century!! (last century)

This century?? Probably alphabay(sp?)
alphazero!! versus anyone!!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Last century - maybe. This century - no, the game was played before this century started. alphabay? No - you're ranting. alphazero!! versus anyone!! No, I think alphazero is no more.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Only one ! for 11...♘a4 is a bit mean. It took me an hour in bits and pieces to work through all the pins and forks and overloading motifs that make 12. ♘xa4 a bad move, and it's a pleasure just reminding myself of them.

Unless that was a known theme with this opening (the ♘ ♘ ♘ version), surely this is a stunning discovery on its own.

I don't usually try to learn a chess game by heart, but for this one I make and exception.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Sorry <cliffordagoodman>. I don't think I made much of a go at interpreting your gnomic utterance. Still not sure what you can have meant, but what the hey, time has passed.
Mar-09-19  DonChalce: speechless.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Joshka: Amazing all Byrne has to do is take that knight on his 18th move and Game of The Century never happens!
Apr-20-19  crazyim5: If ever our beloved game of Chess is shown to aliens as a showcase of human intelligence this game would be my pick!
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: Professor Donald Byrne did not achieve the title of IM until 1962.

However, when this game was played it was already 2 years after Donald Byrne defeated Grandmaster Yuri Averbakh in a 4-game match.

Per Byrne's bio:

<Byrne played on five US Olympiad teams, but his greatest over the board success was the defeat of Yuri Averbakh (+3, =0, -1) in the 1954 USA versus USSR match played in Moscow.>

Based on such a fine result against a GM of Averbakh's stature, I venture to say Byrne was at least IM strength when this game was played.

Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: <crazyim5: If ever our beloved game of Chess is shown to aliens as a showcase of human intelligence this game would be my pick!>

Not a bad choice, but I would probably go with

Botvinnik vs Tal, 1960

Jun-27-19  Patzer Natmas: Game featured in "New in Chess - Tactics Training - Bobby Fischer"

Solve for black on move 17...

Jul-23-19  Chesgambit: Windmill and mate
Premium Chessgames Member
  laskereshevsky: I spend my two penny about this ultra-famous game... Dont know if somebody already reported about a relatively unknown game, wich i dont find here on CG, played in the occupied territory by the germans during bellic period, the II mondial war. Precisly in Warsaw/Cracow 1942 between Russher-Walcicer. I see it first in the book 107 CHESS BATTLES 1939-1945 by Alexander Alekhine, the game number 76 in th book... Having this game 59 pages of kibitzing maybe is possible somebody had already discuss it... in the position

click for larger view

reached after 15.♔e1-f1, black played 15... ♗e6!

click for larger view

... The position is not the same but the similarity is interesting... the ♔in F1, the move♗E6 attacking the ♗ in c4 when the black ♕ was threathened by the WBS♗, even if here on A3 there on B6, and all arise from a Gruenfeld Defense... Its a well know fact that Fischer was an ardent reader and researcher, would be nice to know if this game was in his knowledge, maybe found in same book or booklet or games collection with this game, and in case if he found inspiration from this in playing the stunning combination against Byrne. But unfortunattly Bobby is no more between us and can not fulfill this curiosity...

Oct-10-19  seneca16: I second Simpson's comment about the excellent writing in the Time piece. One of my professors was saying he preferred Edwardian translations of philosophical classics wherever possible because the Edwardians were all such fine writers, whereas today's translators make everything labored and lumpy. btw it was gracious of Byrne to let Fischer mate him rather than resign.
Oct-10-19  m.okun: Bobby is only 13 years old!
Premium Chessgames Member
  laskereshevsky: Found it: ... H W Russner vs C Walcker, 1942
Nov-04-19  chessrookstwo: Great game period.
Jump to page #    (enter # from 1 to 59)
search thread:   
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 59 OF 59 ·  Later Kibitzing>
NOTE: You need to pick a username and password to post a reply. Getting your account takes less than a minute, is totally anonymous, and 100% free—plus, it entitles you to features otherwise unavailable. Pick your username now and join the chessgames community!
If you already have an account, you should login now.
Please observe our posting guidelines:
  1. No obscene, racist, sexist, profane, raunchy, or disgusting language.
  2. No spamming, advertising, duplicate or nonsense posts.
  3. No malicious personal attacks, including cyber stalking, systematic antagonism, or gratuitous name-calling of any gratuitous name-calling of any members—including Admin and Owners—or any of their family, friends, associates, or business interests.
  4. Nothing in violation of United States law.
  5. No malicious posting of or linking to personal, private, and/or negative information (aka "doxing" or "doxxing") about any member, (including all Admin and Owners) or any of their family, friends, associates, or business interests. This includes all media: text, images, video, audio, or otherwise. Such actions will result in severe sanctions for any violators.
  6. NO TROLLING. Admin and Owners know it when they see it, and sanctions for any trolls will be significant.
  7. Any off-topic posts which distract from the primary topic of discussion are subject to removal.
  8. The use of "sock puppet" accounts to circumvent disciplinary action taken by Moderators is expressly prohibited.
  9. The use of "sock puppet" accounts in an attempt to undermine any side of a debate—or to create a false impression of consensus or support—is prohibited.
  10. All decisions with respect to deleting posts, and any subsequent discipline, are final, and occur at the sole discretion of the Moderators, Admin, and Owners.
  11. Please try to maintain a semblance of civility at all times.
Blow the Whistle See something that violates our rules? Blow the whistle and inform a Moderator.

NOTE: Keep all discussion on the topic of this page. This forum is for this specific game and nothing else. If you want to discuss chess in general, or this site, visit the Kibitzer's Café.

Messages posted by Chessgames members do not necessarily represent the views of, its employees, or sponsors. All Moderator actions taken are at the sole discretion of the Admin and Owners—who will strive to act fairly and consistently at all times.

This game is type: CLASSICAL. Please report incorrect or missing information by submitting a correction slip to help us improve the quality of our content.

Featured in the Following Game Collections[what is this?]
bwmate's favorite games
by bwmate
tramnik's favorite games
by tramnik
Luis Casarin's favorite games
by Luis Casarin
evra2007's favorite games
by evra2007
World's Greatest Chess Games- Nunn Emms Burgess
by Patca63
fingerov dmitry's favorite games
by fingerov dmitry
fisch 13y game of cent sacs queen
from gmlisowitz's favorite games by gmlisowitz
World's Greatest Chess Games- Nunn Emms Burgess
by Rookpawn
edragon845's favorite games
by edragon845
Young Bobby Fischer destroyed Donald Byrne, amazing!!
from MarkusKann's favorite games by MarkusKann
by Jaredfchess
"The Game of the Century"
from Ercan's favorite games I by Ercan
willrazen's favorite games
by willrazen
interesting games
by Rimrock
0ZeR0's Favorite Games Volume 1
by 0ZeR0
mating net
from Turning advantage into victory, Shamash Provides by Shamash
This famous game is one of my all time favorites..
from Valandil's favorite games by Valandil
LOUDERMILK's favorite games
Mammoth World's Greatest Chess Games
by Monono27
"The Game of the Century" (game of the day Mar-09-2013)
from GAMES OF THE DAY GTM by gambitfan
plus 913 more collections (not shown)

home | about | login | logout | F.A.Q. | your profile | preferences | Premium Membership | Kibitzer's Café | Biographer's Bistro | new kibitzing | chessforums | Tournament Index | Player Directory | Notable Games | World Chess Championships | Opening Explorer | Guess the Move | Game Collections | ChessBookie Game | Chessgames Challenge | Store | privacy notice | contact us

Copyright 2001-2019, Chessgames Services LLC