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Paul Morphy vs Duke Karl / Count Isouard
"A Night at the Opera" (game of the day Dec-02-2007)
Paris (1858), Paris FRA
Philidor Defense: General (C41)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Nov-06-02  pawntificator: I heard Morphy was pissed because he wanted to watch the opera but the Duke made him sit with his back to the stage, so he beat them as quickly as possible. This man was so brilliant, he's my favorite.
Nov-06-02  Danilomagalhaes: This game was nice because Morphy could win the game easily with another moves like 8. Qxb7, and after it Nc3. But win the game in a beautiful way was some of the carachteristics of Morphy.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: White could play 8. Bxf7+! Kd8 (8...Qxf7? 9. Qxb7 with next Qxa8) 9. Qxb7 Qb4+ 10. Qxb4 Bxb4+ 11. c3 winning two pawns.
Nov-09-02  drukenknight: I think black could make a game out of it w/

8. Bxf7+ Qxf7 9. Qxb7 Nxe4

Nov-09-02  pawntificator: The knight can't take e4 cause the Queen is eyeing it from b7. I read a book that went through this game by Ed Lasker. I can't remember what he said now...I'll bring it tomorrow.
Nov-09-02  drukenknight: another first for chess! The queen is "eyeing" it.

"Peekaboo! I see you!"

Nov-09-02  pawntificator: It's okay if she see's you, as long as you see her too... heh heh.
Nov-09-02  skakmiv: Why didn't someone play the Caro-Kann against Morphy? It's very solid...
Nov-09-02  drukenknight: I dont think it was well known. The two guys who worked it up (Mr. Caro and Mr. Kann) did so in the 1880s; according to the 1957 MCO. But it was mentioned by Polerio in 1590!
Nov-28-02  Chess Champ: pawntificator... where did u get that name from? what is your rating, wanna talk about chess, there is an email above...
Nov-28-02  Chess Champ: Yea man, Morphy's da man.
Jan-10-03  evansgambit: how can i play like this??? i want to be good, but don't know how to improve...please someone help me.
Jan-10-03  PVS: To get better you must play a lot of games against slightly stronger players and not be afraid of taking a lot losses. Find a book to study (people here can suggest one depending on your level), or even better a teacher. Analyse your games seriously and see why you won or lost.
Jan-10-03  Bears092: Another thing that will help is a powerful analytical engine.
Jan-11-03  pawntificator: <how can i play like this???> It would also help to play against opponents who walk right into your traps like lemmings.
Jan-11-03  ughaibu: This story about Morphy winning quickly so that he could watch the opera doesn't consider how long the opposition spent on their moves, being consultants they would have had to chat so probably played slowly and took a long time even for such a short game.
Jan-15-03  MichaelJHuman: What was black's biggest mistake?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: Black's biggest mistake was challenging Morphy to a game of chess!!

Just kidding.

I agree with Fischer's comment that 3...Bg4
is the first weak move. Why? Well, after 6.Bc4 White has two pieces developed (compared to Black's none), and is wielding a mate threat, and Black doesn't have a really good response.

Jan-15-03  MichaelJHuman: 3...Nf6 seems better in that case
Jan-16-03  drukenknight: I dont think ...Bg4 was bad, per se. But what followed was a policy of exchanging pieces as rapidly as possible. THis resulted in lack of development, eventually.

I think black would have to play boldly to keep this up, perhaps 4...Qe7?

I wonder if 6...f6 would not have been better? He may have to follow up with ...Bb4+.

It seems that as black you dont really have the luxury of exchanging if the other fellow is developing his pieces ahead of you, i.e. white has one more piece out there than you, if you start exchanging then you simply wind up putting one of his pieces on a better square.

Jan-16-03  ughaibu: 4. ...Nd7 gambiting a pawn has also been suggested.
Mar-14-03  ShadoutMapes: I always thought 9... b5 was a bad move, which weakened the queenside, though it's hard to suggest a better move (9... h6 possibly?).

I think after white's mate threat, it gave Morphy an extra tempo and trapped black's entire kingside, and black would've lost no matter what afterwards. Maybe it was Bg4 which allowed such a thing to happen, though.

Mar-21-03  Lethe: The problem with 9 ... b5 is that it allows 10 Nxb5!! with a major attack, and the game proceeds in a forced manner thereafter.
Mar-22-03  crafty: 9. ... b5 10. ♘xb5 cxb5 11. ♗xb5+ ♔d8 12. ♗xf6 gxf6 13. O-O-O+   (eval 2.36; depth 13 ply; 500M nodes)
Mar-23-03  Lethe: Also good appears to be 13 ♕d5+ and with best play, White wins a bucketful of pawns and gets a queen for a rook and a piece (I think, but I don't claim to be a comp!) Thanks for the eval,
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