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NN vs Gioachino Greco
"Beware Greeks Bearing Gifts" (game of the day Jan-02-2018)
Miscellaneous game (1620), ?, rd 12
Italian Game: Italian Variation (C50)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Nov-27-04  sourcerer: was that mate!!mate?:-) greco theorem.nice
Nov-28-04  Knight13: 9. cxd4? a mistake?

This maate is just like the mate played in the start of the Chessmaster (computer)'s commercial cartoon!

Feb-09-05  InspiredByMorphy: <Knight13> <9. cxd4? a mistake?> Yes. 9.Bf4 was better.
Feb-15-05  Cyphelium: <IBM> After 9. ♗f4 dxc3, 10. ♖e2 seems to be the only move to cover both b2 and f2. Then 10.- cxb2 11. ♖xb2 d6 and I doubt that white has enough compensation for two pawns.
Feb-15-05  sneaky pete: 9.Nxd4 Qh4 is still hopeless (10.h3 Qxf2+ 11.Kh1 Nxd4).

If 9.Bf4 dxc3 10.Re2 .. black plays .. Nxf2! winning.

Another typical Greco brilliancy would have been 9.Bg5 dxc3! 10.Bxe7 Bxf2+ 11.Kf1 cxb2 etc.

9.cxd4 Nxd4 10.Nxd4 Qh4 11.Be3 .. would have been his best chance, the position after 11... Qxh2+ 12.Kf1 Qh1+ 13.Ke2 Qxg2 is far from clear.

White should of course have played 8.cxd4 .. (instead of 8.e5? ..) with a slightly better game.

Feb-15-05  InspiredByMorphy: <Cyphelium & sneaky pete> Thanks for the input. Indeed white should have played 8.cxd4 .
Jan-01-07  Dr.Lecter: this guy uses the smothered mate a lot, doesn't he?
Jul-29-08  Whitehat1963: Excellent Monday/Tuesday puzzle after 11. Nf3.
May-17-10  SirChrislov: "Philidor's legacy" first demonstrated by Lucena in 1497. about 250 years before Philidor.
May-17-10  MaxxLange: Lucena has that Rook ending position named after him, at least
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <MaxxLange: Lucena has that Rook ending position named after him, at least>

Wrongly, i think

Jan-04-11  kevin86: an early,crude smothered mate.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Nightsurfer: When we get taught the GREAT SMOTHERED MATE we normally do not get demonstrated this finish here in <NN vs G Greco, 1620> by the Big Three, namely Queen plus Back-up Bishop plus Knight in <NN vs G Greco, 1620>, but the somewhat more recent version, namely the Bad Blow by Queen plus Knight that is called "Philidor's Legacy" and that has been demonstrated by Maestro <G Greco> too: NN vs Greco, 1625

The latter version NN vs Greco, 1625 - though it is not the oldest one - is considered to be the most basic version of the GREAT SMOTHERED MATE , therefore it is fair enough to call it "VERSION NO. 1" of THE GREAT SMOTHERED MATE (the fact notwithstanding that it is the slightly "younger" version of the GREAT SMOTHERED MATE). Some more samples of VERSION NO. 1 of the GREAT SMOTHERED MATE aka "Philidor's Legacy": Morphy vs Schrufer, 1859 , B Koester vs R Gralla, 1971 , C Bloodgood vs B Evans, 1961 , S Duron Godoy vs V Garcia Castro, 2004 and K Bischoff vs K Mueller, 2004 .

Whereas the replay of the execution in this game here <NN vs G Greco, 1620> - the replay of the BASIC VERSION NO. 2 OF THE GREAT SMOTHERED MATE (the fact notwithstanding that this version is slightly "older" than THE BASIC VERSION NO. 1 in NN vs Greco, 1625 ) has been put on the board some thousand miles up north and !! 350 years !! after this game here <NN vs G Greco, 1620 >: T Peine vs V Budde, 1970 . The most recent case - !!! 380 years !! after this game here <NN vs G Greco, 1620 > : Grischuk vs Ponomariov, 2000

Apr-17-14  Soob: Love it! One of the first smothered mate ever written down, I guess.
Jun-06-16  Christoforus Polacco: Lucena's first smothered mate is here: Game Collection: Philidor's Legacy
Jan-02-18  algete: N.N. nunca aprende
Jan-02-18  Cheapo by the Dozen: The punster for this title worked like a Trojan.
Jan-02-18  ChessHigherCat: <Cheapo by the Dozen: The punster for this title worked like a Trojan.>

Are you contra his conception?

Jan-02-18  morfishine: "Late Knight"...White's knight arrived too late


Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: Greco conned him into capturing 10. Nxd4? as 10 ... Qh4 was hard on his position.
Jan-02-18  schnarre: ...Shouldn't the pun read "Beware Greco's Bearing Gifts?!"
Premium Chessgames Member
  Ziryab: <Nightsurfer> Be wary of drawing strong conclusions concerning sequences from the dates you find in these databases. Greco's "games"" were presented in dozens of manuscripts given to patrons in Rome (1620), France (1621, 1625), England (1622-1623)--just a sampling. More than two dozen of these manuscripts remain, but many others are lost.

These manuscripts were converted by others into published books in England (1656), France (1669), and others. The 1669 Paris edition, based on Greco's most complete manuscripts (1624-1625), became the base for later books in many countries, most notably by William Lewis in London (1819) and Louis Hoffmann--a pseudonym (1900). Hoffmann's collection is the basis for the databases, and these databases leave out annotations or variations in Hoffmann that derive from "games" presented in Greco's manuscripts as separate entries.

Premium Chessgames Member
  fredthebear: Well stated <Ziryab>.

<Nightsurfer> has been missing from this sight for a few months. I hope and pray that he is safe and sound.

Jan-07-23  generror: I really prefer this to Greco's other and more well-known smothered mate, NN vs Greco, 1625. First, both players play a really solid opening, which is already exceptional for the 17th century. From move 6 on, both sides make various mistakes, but understandable ones; for example, both overlook that <6.c3?> blunders a pawn: <6...Nxe4!> (D)

click for larger view

and retaking would be a mistake because Black wins back the piece plus gets a strong initiative: <7.Rxe4? d5 8.Bxd5 Qxd5 9.Re1 Bg4>, evaluated as -3 by Stockfish. Sure, today's GMs wouldn't miss this one, but 17th century world class was something else and probably not even today's IM level.

The only really basic mistake is <11.Nf3??> which exposes the f-pawn to three attackers, resulting in the earliest recorded smothered mate in chess history, including a queen sacrifice (with the mating move also being a royal fork, which doesn't change anything but is pretty cool).

Compared to this one, the later smothered mate really hasn't got much to offer except of course its ending.

Premium Chessgames Member
  ronski: here if 11..... Be3 !!! by stockfish

11. Be3
12. Kf1
13. Ke2
14. Qd2
15. exd6
16. Qxe3
17. Kd2
18. Qg3
19. fxg3
20. Kxe1
21. Nc3
22. Bd5
23. Kd2
24. Ne2
25. Bxe6
26. Rh1
27. Rh4
28. Ra4
29. Rb4
30. a4
31. axb5
32. Ra4
33. Ra6
34. Kd1
35. Ra8+
36.Ra7+ Kf6 37.Rb7 Rd3+ 38.Kc1 e4 39.Rxb5 Bd2+ 40.Kc2 Bh6 41.Nf4 Bxf4 42.gxf4 h5 43.Rb8 h4 44.Rf8+ Ke6 45.b4 d4 46.b5 Rc3+ 47.Kd1 h3 48.f5+ Ke5 49.Rh8 Kxf5 50.b6 Rb3 51.Kc2 Rxb6 52.Rxh3 g5

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