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Paul Morphy vs Daniel Harrwitz
Morphy - Harrwitz (1858), Paris FRA, rd 2, Sep-08
Philidor Defense: Exchange Variation (C41)  ·  0-1



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Given 61 times; par: 57 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jul-28-05  capanegra: This was Harrwitz' third and last win against Morphy in his life. Harrwitz vs Morphy, 1858 was their first meeting, being an off-hand game played at the Café de la Régence just before the match. So, after the present game, Harrwitz was 2-0 in the match, but 3-0 in the total games they played.

About this game, Edward Lasker also brings some light about Morphy's first two defeats in his match against Harrwitz:

<Morphy, entranced with the charm of Paris night life, had taken to going to bed in the wee hours of the morning. Foolishly he persisted in doing this even the night before the commencement of the match, and Harrwitz, who had the move in the first game, trounced him soundly, to the visible disappointment of the large crowd of onlookers who were all praying for Morphy's victory. The same thing happened the next day. In spite of his friends' warning, he stayed out until four o'clock in the morning. That afternoon, after obtaining a winning position in the game, fatigue overcame him, he made a few weak moves, and Harrwitz was again victorious.

Throughout the game the latter displayed an attitude of amused contempt. When Morphy resigned, he rose from his chair, took Morphy’s hand and felt his pulse. Then he said laughingly to the crowd: "Well, this is most astonishing. His pulse does not beat any faster than if he had won the game!"

Everybody was disgusted at this childish display of vainglory, but Morphy merely smiled and said to his "second": "How astonished all these men will be when Harrwitz does not get another game." And he didn't. Morphy promised to be in bed before twelve every night during the match, and he kept his promise. He scored the third and fourth games in beautiful style. The effect on Harrwitz was interesting. He became extremely nervous during the fourth game, often shaking violently when he was about to move. On the other side of the board sat Morphy, looking, according to eyewitnesses, like a block of living marble, the very embodiment of penetration and decision.

Harrwitz lost the fifth game too, although he had the move. He asked for a respite of a few days, pleading ill health. It was of no avail. The sixth game was again won by Morphy. Claiming that he needed more rest, Harrwitz postponed play once more. Upon resumption of the contest he drew one game and lost one more. At that point, with a score 5.5 to 2.5 against him, he resigned "on account of ill health", a worthy counterpart of Staunton.>

Apr-24-07  wolfmaster: I don't believe that 7.Bg5 is the best move in that position. 7.0-0 or Nc3 gives White a persistent edge.
Apr-24-07  RookFile: In a way, though, Morphy's instinct was tremendous, with the plan of Qxd4, Bb5, Bxc6, and 0-0-0. Tal used this plan in some games, and won some nice games with it. Obviously, on this occasion, Morphy's execution was flawed.
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <wolfmaster> Right, 7. Bg5 can be met by 7...Be7 8. Qxg7 Bf6 9. Qxh8 (9. Bxf6 Qxf6 10. Qxf6 Nxf6 regaining the pawn) Bxh8 10. Bxd8 Bxb2.
Oct-26-07  nimh: Rybka 2.4 mp, AMD X2 2.01GHz, 10 min per move, threshold 0.33.

Morphy 8 mistakes:
15.Kb1 0.29 (15.f4 0.74)
18.Ree1 0.22 (18.f4 0.64)
19.Rg1 -0.17 (19.Ne7+ 0.29)
20.Qe3 -0.24 (20.Qh4 0.28)
30.Rh1 -2.47 (30.Rg4 -0.34)
31.Rhg1 -3.61 (31.Qb4 -2.52)
33.Rg5 -6.03 (33.Qc3 -4.38)
36.Qxe8 -7.73 (36.Qe1 -5.68)

Harrwitz 4 mistakes:
11...Ne8 0.68 (11...Nd7 0.18)
17...Qxh2 0.64 (17...c6 0.26)
19...Kh7 0.28 (19...Kh8 -0.17)
20...f5 0.61 (20...Nf6 -0.24)

Premium Chessgames Member
  andrewjsacks: Harrwitz was also a very fine player, and ahead of his time in general understanding of the game.
Dec-14-08  Vishy but not Anand: Black Queen is basically misplaced but
Morphy's mistake is 18. Ree1??

He should just continue his attack

18. Ne7+ Kh1
19. Nf5 (threatening Rxe8! followed by Qxg7 mate)

Black options:

19. ...Rg8 20. Re4 (if ...f6 21. Ne7 and wins and if ...Nf6 21. Rh4 Qg2 22. Nxh6 leading to a mating net

19. ...Qg2 20. Nxh6 f6 21. Qh4! gxh6 (fxe5? 22. Nf5+! Kg8 23. Ne7 mate) Qxh6+ 22. Kg8 Rg5+ and wins)

19. ...f6 20. Re7 Rg8 (Qg7 21. Qd7 Rg8 22. Nxh6 and wins))21. Qd7 Qg2 Nxh6 and wins

19. ...Nf6 20. Rde1 Rad8 21. Qc3 Qxf2 22. R5e2 Rd1+!! (Qb6? 23. Rg2 Rg8 24. Rh1 threatening mate) 23. Rxd1 Qxe2 24. Rh1 (threatening mate by Rxh6+ followed by Qxf6+) Qa6 25. Qe5 (25. Qd2 Kh7 26. Qg2 Rg8 27. Qg5 still unclear)Qe6(...Re8 26. Qg3 Rg8 27.Qg5 or even faster Nxh6!! and wins) 26. Qf4 Ng8 27. Rg1 and wins

Dec-14-08  Vishy but not Anand: A glitch in analysis:

<19. ...Qg2 20. Nxh6 f6 21. Qh4! gxh6 (fxe5? 22. Nf5+! Kg8 23. Ne7 mate) Qxh6+ 22. Kg8 Rg5+ and wins)>

should be
19. Qg2 20. Nxh6 f6 21. Rh5 gxh6 22. Rxh6+ Kg8 (if Kg7 23. Qh4 Rf7 24. Rh7+ Kf8 25.Rh8+ Ke7 26. Qe4+ mate) 23. Qd5+ Rf7 24. Qh5 Kf8 25. Rh8+ Ke7 26. Qc5+ Ke6 27. Qd5+ Ke7 28. Qe4 mate

Apr-11-09  TheWizardfromHarlem: what is having a slow pulse supposed to mean..nerves of steel? coldblooded?
Aug-19-09  Brown: ... a lack of concern over the result.
Apr-02-10  madlydeeply: Hah Ms. Batgirl i love your comments it makes it seem like Morphy had a number of side bets and was playing coy to drive up the odds! Fun! I love conspiracy stuff HAHA
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: <tamar> and <SBC>, nice discussion.
Premium Chessgames Member
  andrewjsacks: The much-maligned Harrwitz is a vastly underrated player and Morphy's most dangerous opponent.
Apr-11-11  drnooo: I have always felt that Morphy was not nearly conniving enough: had he wanted to trap Staunton or any of the others, he should have done it with better backroom pool hall tactics: obviously so superior to them, all he had to do was suck them in as it happened here with Harrwitz. Make it look close, then Staunton would have come. Also he might have shopped around for somebody to come up with a monstrous purse, that would have brought them around. Deep down his real reason was that he despised his own ability.
Premium Chessgames Member
  erniecohen: <SBC> You seem to be hinting that Morphy lost the first few games on purpose to raise the odds, then had someone bet heavily for him to come back and win?

I'm sure there isn't a shred of evidence for this, but wouldn't it be cool if it turned out that Morphy was secretly the ultimate chess professional?

Aug-30-12  SBC: <erniecohen> I think hinting is too strong a word. Edge gave the reason for Morphy's early losses as late nights and there's little reason to doubt Edge. But... the possibility does remain that Morphy was either testing Harrwitz or setting him up. Either way, Morphy had his number.

Interesting enough, in Harrwitz's 1862 book, "Lehrbuch des schachspiels: enthaltend die analyse der eröffnungen und Endungen" he presented only two games between himself and Morphy (two of the three he won) and one of them was this game. However, Harrwitz gives the game with this score (in algebraic notation, no less) The score given here at was the one given by Maroczy:

[Event "match"]
[Site "Paris"]
[Date "1858.09.05"]
[Round "2"]
[Result "0-1"]
[White "Paul Morphy"]
[Black "Daniel Harrwitz"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 exd4 4. Qxd4 Nc6 5. Bb5 Bd7 6. Bxc6 Bxc6 7. Bg5 Nf6 8. Nc3 Be7 9. O-O-O O-O 10. Rhe1 h6 11. Bh4 Ne8 12. Bxe7 Qxe7 13. e5 Bxf3 14. gxf3 Qg5+ 15. Kb1 dxe5 16. Rxe5 Qg2 17. Nd5 Qxh2 18. Ree1 Qd6 19. Rg1 Kh7 20. Qe3 f5 21. Nf4 Qb6 22. Qe2 Rf7 23. Qc4 Qf6 24. Nh5 Qe7 25. Rde1 Qd7 26. a3 Nd6 27. Qd4 Rg8 28. Rg2 b6 29. Reg1 Ne8 30. Qc3 f4 31. Rh1 g6 32. Rhg1 Qd5 33. Qe1 Qxh5 34. Rg5 Qxf3 35. Qe6 Rf6 36. Qe7+ Rg7 37. Qxe8 hxg5 38. Qe1 Qc6 39. f3 Re6 40. Qf2 Rge7

Nov-17-12  LoveThatJoker: Guess-the-Move Final Score:

Morphy vs Harrwitz, 1858.
Your score: 60 (par = 56)


Sep-09-13  extremepleasure2: I've closely reviewed this match between Harrwitz and Morphy and the match left an impression on me that Harrwitz was an equal player to Morhpy.

I noticed that games in the the match suddenly end due to a blunder made by Harrwitz while they're pretty equal.

IMO these mistakes were made by Harrwitz due to fatigue. I believe it's the differences between life styles of these two players rather than the strength difference played an important role in this clearly one-sided result of the match. It's very well-known that Morphy had very healthy life style that includes making sports including morning joggings as well as foil. I believe that's why he, unlike Harrwitz, could keep stamina of his mind till to the very end.

My conclusion is that Harrwitz was by far the strongest chess player Morphy had ever encountered up until to this match and this match made Morphy even a stronger player.

Mar-18-14  RookFile: <tamar: Harrwitz in 1858 was the best player in Europe. He was in practice, clever, and unorthodox, very conscious of taking players out of their known schemes >

An excellent insight. In another game tonight, I reflected that Harrwitz showed elements of Lasker in his play. The guy definitely had ideas.

Dec-29-14  sreeskamp: Morphy in this game has been completely outplayed by Harrwitz who develops all his pieces, does not fall in love with dubious 19th century offers and plays just modern positional chess.
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: Daniel, You're a Star.
Aug-17-15  kishore4u: . Morphy 8 mistakes:
15.Kb1 0.29 (15.f4 0.74)
18.Ree1 0.22 (18.f4 0.64)
19.Rg1 -0.17 (19.Ne7+ 0.29)
20.Qe3 -0.24 (20.Qh4 0.28)
30.Rh1 -2.47 (30.Rg4 -0.34)
31.Rhg1 -3.61 (31.Qb4 -2.52)
33.Rg5 -6.03 (33.Qc3 -4.38)
36.Qxe8 -7.73 (36.Qe1 -5.68
Jun-10-16  MorphinTime: It is time
Mar-08-21  g4ndalf: <Vishy but not Anand> 18. Ne7+ Kh1
19. Nf5 Nf6
is actually winning for black according to stockfish. 22. R5e2 is a blunder, as the queen can simply pick up the rook due to backrank mating treath. Even the final position is still winning for black. Black is under no threat of mate and can start a powerful attack on white's kingside by bringing out the rook.
Aug-15-21  paulmorphy1969: Harrwitz gives the game with 40 moves and deviates from all those published in the books such as the one presented here at Black's 28 move. The same game as presented by Harrwitz was published in New York Clipper, Jan 22, 1859.
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