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Curt von Bardeleben vs Emanuel Lasker
Berlin (1890), Berlin GER, rd 7, Jul-24
Queen Pawn Game: Colle System (D04)  ·  0-1

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-23-09  seagull1756: Lasker simply locked himself in the toilet and turned his laptop on. Danailov didn't mind.
Nov-18-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  paderamo: http://www.newspapers.com/clip/1895...
Nov-19-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: <RookFile: I'm unfamiliar with this cheating allegation, whiteshark. Tell us more? I don't see what the big deal is about 21.....Kh8. White has the transparent threat of Qg4, or Qg1, leading to mate.

What else was Lasker supposed to do?>

The news report (kindly supplied by <padermo>) is slightly but crucially different: it says Lasker left the room after he played 20...gxf6.

Nov-19-13  JimNorCal: <paderamo> Fascinating!
Oct-19-14  Karpova: <V. Bardeleben hatte gegen E. Lasker eine Damenbauereröffnung gewählt, und Lasker hatte einen Bauern gewonnen, als v. Bardeleben ein überraschendes und hochelegantes, Qualitätsopfer brachte [...]. E. Lasker nahm das Opfer an, wozu er übrigens gezwungen war, und verliess hierauf das Spiellokal. C. v. Bardeleben, dem, da er in Konsequenz des gebrachten Opfers auf Angriff spielen musste, eigentlich nur eine brauchbare Fortsetzung zu Gebote stand, machte seinen Zug und setzte, da sein Gegner noch nicht zurück war, die Uhr desselben in Gang. Nach einer geraumen Zeit (Die Angaben der beiden Parteien schwanken zwischen 27 und 37 Minuten!) kehrte Herr Lasker zurück und gab in ganz kurzer Zeit seinen Zug ab. Da der Verdacht laut wurde, dass Herr Lasker die Zeit seiner Abwesenheit zu einer unerlaubten Analyse benutzt habe, so legte sein Gegner gegen die Partie Berufung beim Komitee ein. Vor das Schiedsgericht berufen sagte Herr Lasker aus, er sei unwohl gewesen und zur Erholung spazieren gegangen. Da er von dieser Absicht dem Komitee nicht vorher Mitteilung gemacht und also ohne Genehmigung desselben das Turnierlokal verlassen hatte, hielt das Schiedsgericht es für angebracht, Herrn Lasker eine Rüge wegen seines Verhaltens zu erteilen und forderte denselben auf, freiwillig eine neue Partie zu spielen, welche Aufforderung Herr Lasker ablehnte! Da das Komitee keinen Paragraphen ausfindig machen konnte, der gegen dieses offenbar nicht korrekte, mindestens die Gebote der Höflichkeit ganz ausser Acht lassende Verfahren des Herrn Lasker in Anwendung zu bringen war, so gab man demselben formell Recht (!!) und Herr v. Bardeleben meldete darauf seinen Rücktritt vom Turnier an. Unbegreiflicher Weise war der Anfang des naturgemäß entstandenen Wortwechsels im Spielzimmer selbst verhandelt worde, [...].>

Source: Albert Heyde, Deutsches Wochenschach, 10 August 1890, issues 31/32, p. 267

Von Bardeleben sacrifices the exchange after Lasker had won a ♙. Lasker accepted the sacrifice (he was forced to) and left the playing hall. Von Bardeleben had to play for an attack now and so had only one sensible move - he made the move and pressed the clock.

Lasker came back after 27 or 37 minutes (differing statements by the protagonists) and executed his move in very short time. This triggered the suspicion that Lasker had used the time of absence to conduct illegal analyses. Von Bardeleben filed a protest against the game at the committee. Lasker explained to the abritrating body that he didn't feel well and so went for a walk. However, he had not notified the committee and so no allowance to leave the playing hall. The arbitrating body reprimanded Lasker for his behaviour and suggested to him to voluntarily play a new game. But Lasker declined.

No paragraph was found against this, obviously incorrect, at least ignoring the acts of courtesy, behaviour by Lasker. So Lasker was formally found right. Von Bardeleben withdrew from the tournament. The beginning of the battle of words inexplicably took place in the playing room. (I didn't type in the rest, describing how the noise induced a terrible mistake in another game, leading to the withdrawal of a contender for 1st prize and so secured 1st place for Lasker without a fight. Yet, Lasker was still not willing to contest a new game).

Oct-19-14  Karpova: <Das ganze Turnier ist also nicht gut verlaufen und die Schuld daran muss man dem Auftreten des Herrn E. Lasker zuschreiben, dessen Verfahren, mag dasselbe formell anzugreifen sein oder nicht, sich jedenfalls so weit von der bei deutschen Spielern bisher gebräuchlichen Ritterlichkeit entfernt, dass man vor einer Wiederholung ähnlicher Vorkommsnisse nicht dringend genug warnen kann, zumal sich Herr Lasker bereits beim Turnier in Breslau wegen eines nicht ganz korrekten Verhaltens eine Rüge zugezogen hat.>

Source: Albert Heyde, Deutsches Wochenschach, 10 August 1890, issues 31/32, p. 267

So the whole tournament didn't go well and the guilt has to be ascribed to Mr. E. Lasker's demeanour, whose conduct, may it be formally right or not, in any case departed so far from the until now common chivalry among German players, that you cannot warn enough of a repetition of similar occurrances, especially since Mr. Lasker was already reprimanded in the Breslau tournament for not quite correct behaviour.>

The rest I didn't type in is also interesting. Heyde reports that from "interested sides" (<interessierter Seite>) notes were send to newspapers, among them even the obvious lie that von Bardeleben, when withdrawing from the tournament, had not won a game yet (at that time, he had scored +2 -2 =2, and then forfeited the last two games).

Oct-19-14  devere: It seems that von Bardeleben's final move, 21.Bh6, was a mistake. He should have played 21.e5, and then if fxe5 22.Qf3! White wins.


click for larger view

Black must play 21...Bxe5, and then after 22.Qg1+ Kh8 23.dxe5 White has just won two pieces for a rook and pawn, but Black to move still stands better.


click for larger view

Oct-19-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  Garech: Interesting comments above, more evidence that Von Barbleden was a drama queen!

-Garech

Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: "... especially since Mr. Lasker was already reprimanded in the Breslau tournament for not quite correct behaviour."

Anybody know what this incident relates too.

The other player who also withdrew in the same round was Harmonist.

Aug-03-17  Magpye: Who couldn't have seen 21...Kh8 in under a minute? It is the only logical move to be made in this position in view of White's Queen and Rook ready to occupy the g-file.
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: <devere: It seems that von Bardeleben's final move, 21.Bh6, was a mistake. He should have played 21.e5, and then if fxe5 22.Qf3! White wins.>

That makes this whole thing a horse of a very different colour. Lasker plays 20...gxf6 and goes for a walk. He can calculate that 21. Bh6 loses to ...Kh8, but then he visualises the dastardly 21. e5!

He then decides to absent himself for half an hour.

When he comes back, luckily CvB has played the useless Bh6. Lasker plays ....Kh8 and the game is over.

But was Lasker analysing 21. e5! on a pocket set?

Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: The only Breslau incident I can find in the tournament Lasker played in was the one where the pawn went missing from a board during an adjourned game.

----

In this pages tournament Harmonist was due to play both Lasker brother when he too walked out. The Lasker boys were given a win by default.

Apparently the tournament was plagued with withdrawals. The December 1976 BCM reports that Riemann withdrew after losing to E. Lasker. Minckwitz walked after losing to von Bardeleben, Harmonist and Mieses. Harmonist and von Bardeleben went home after round 7.

Aug-04-17  JimNorCal: So Breslau was won by Lasker via shenanigans?

And the Breslau win got him an invite which launched his career? Wow.

Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: First of all, it was obviously a pre-computer era, there was no one better than Lasker he could have consulted with, and I seriously the doubt that Lasker couldn't have done those calculations in his head, considering that he's done far more complicated ones over the board. I think it far more likely he left the room because he wanted to show off that he had already thought it all out, or possibly to perform "unchivalrous" bodily functions in the gentleman's powder room.
Aug-04-17  WorstPlayerEver: <ChessHigherCat>

Nonsense. If Lasker had it 'all worked out' he would have warned the officials.

Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: Hi C.H.C.

Lasker was not quite yet the Lasker he became. In the same tournament he went down in 14 moves as Black v Horatio Caro.

H Caro vs Lasker, 1890

No surprise that Lasker played 21...Kh8 after one minute following his...

" I didn't feel well and so went for a walk."

It's an obvious move. It would have been interesting to see how long he took replying to 21.e5 in this position.


click for larger view

Which demands some careful play on the Black side..

Whatever happened during Lasker's time off board it was enough for Curt von Bardeleben to quit the tournament and start his war of words.

Not sure why Harmonist left. It may have been in sympathy with Curt von B. or the ensuing row whilst he was playing caused him to blunder a won game. It was his last tournament.

Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Emanuel Lasker was 22 when this was played and he would have been considered a total parvenu.

In German society he would have been expected to show huge respect to his elders, especially considering that Lasker was a young Jew and Curt von Bardeleben was a <KWASCHCHARPS>: A Known White Schachspeiler Christian Aristocratic Potential Suicide LOL.

Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <Sally Simpson> Even I can see in 30 seconds without a board (I haven't had one for years) that h8 is the only possible move in that situation, with or without e5.

<Whatever happened during Lasker's time off board it was enough for Curt von Bardeleben to quit the tournament and start his war of words.>

Exactly how much would it take to encourage an Austrian aristocrat in the golden age of antisemitism to blame his loss on a Jew? Maybe Lasker's secret contact was Dreyfus?

<offramp: In German society he would have been expected to show huge respect to his elders, especially considering that Lasker was a young Jew and Curt von Bardeleben was a <KWASCHCHARPS>: A Known White Schachspeiler Christian Aristocratic Potential Suicide LOL.>

I'm surprised the newspaper article wasn't entitled "So wird Judenschach gespielt!". Anyway, it was nothing for Bardeleben to go throwing himself out of a window about, a gesture through which he was promoted to SQUASHEDCORPSE in memoria eterna.

Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: Hi C.H.C.


click for larger view

21.e5 Kh6 allows 22.exd6 when the win, if it is there at all, becomes very problematic.

To keep winning chances Black has to play 21...Be7 or 21...Bxe5 both require a few deft moves. Not beyond a later Lasker's capabilities. He just chose an importune moment to go for a walk.

Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <Sally: 21.e5 Kh6 allows 22.exd6 when the win, if it is there at all, becomes very problematic.

To keep winning chances Black has to play 21...Be7 or 21...Bxe5 both require a few deft moves. Not beyond a later Lasker's capabilities. He just chose an importune moment to go for a walk.>

I fail to see the point if you're trying to support the accusations of cheating. Look, either

I) L anticipated 21. e5 (as you say a *later* Lasker could have done, which suggests by negative implication that L. was incapable of doing so during this game) or else, like me,

II) he overlooked the e5 line but saw the obvious threat of Qg4

The formula for calculating the probabilities of Lasker cheating would be something like this:

a) Prob. of case I) (he saw e5 line) = 50%

b) Prob. that he would need to cheat to find a reply = 50% (at most)

c) Prob. that he had ready means of "cheating" at his disposal in a highly supervised building which must have been full of guards and spies since the Emperor was present = 25% at best

d)Prob. that L intended to make use of such means and did so: let's assume the Austrian antisemite's malicious figure of 90% for the sake of argument

50% * 50% * 25% * 90% = Probability of cheating of 0.056 or about 1 about 1 in 18, hardly beyond a reasonable doubt.

Now let's look at case II:

a) Probability that he overlooked the e5 line but saw the obvious threat of Qg4: 50%

b) Probability that he would need to cheat in order to find the reply h8: 2%

c) same as above: 25%

d) same as above: 90%

The probability of cheating in case II is therefore 50% * 2% * 25% * 90% = 0.00225, a negligible quantity so there's not much point in summing I + II.

Anyway, am I hallucinating or did I not recently raise the question of verification of Toiletgate, in which K. left the table not once but innumerable times in what was very much the computer age, which increases the possibilities of meaningful cheating enormously, and thereby called down the wrath of the vengeful furies upon my head without a word of support from anyone except Tamar?

Why such outcries of suspicion against Lasker in this case?

Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: Hi H/C.H.

" if you're trying to support the accusations of cheating."

I'm not supporting that claim at all.

I was wondering if anybody knew of the Breslau incident and why Lasker had been warned about his behaviour in that event.

After that it's basically what the newspapers were reporting.

At a critical moment during a game Lasker went for a walk, nobody knew where. (if the Emperor's guard's or spies saw him Lasker could have called them as witness's). The committee asked him to replay the game. Lasker declined. von Bardeleben walked out of the tournament. The End.

I'd still like to know what the Breslau incident was....anybody?

Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <Sally Simpson> I don't know what happened in Breslau but if it had been really scandalous the author of that article would undoubtedly have spelled it out instead of making an innuendo, because you can tell by his tone he's as prejudiced as you can get.

First of all, he blames Lasker for everything that went wrong with the whole tournament, which seems absurd:

<Das ganze Turnier ist also nicht gut verlaufen und die Schuld daran muss man dem Auftreten des Herrn E. Lasker zuschreiben,>

Secondly the accusation of misconduct is not based on breaking any rules, but on a lack of conformity with the spirit of Germany chivalry (whatever the hell leaving the table for 20 minutes has to do with Teutonic Knighthood):

<mag dasselbe formell anzugreifen sein oder nicht, sich jedenfalls so weit von der bei deutschen Spielern bisher gebräuchlichen Ritterlichkeit entfernt, dass man vor einer Wiederholung ähnlicher Vorkommsnisse nicht dringend genug warnen kann>

The only real accusation they can manage to scrape up is that the Jew was being un-Teutonic.

About the incident in Breslau, Lasker didn't break any rules, the article just says somebody complained(<gerügt>) about something "that wasn't entirely proper" (<nicht ganz korrekt>). Since the author obviously isn't trying to spare Lasker's feelings, the only reason he doesn't describe the alleged "almost impropriety" is that it's too trivial to mention.

Aug-05-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: The description of his alleged misconduct is absurd as well:

<Vor das Schiedsgericht berufen sagte Herr Lasker aus, er sei unwohl gewesen und zur Erholung spazieren gegangen.>

Summoned before the court of arbitration, Mr. Lasker said he felt ill and went for a walk to refresh himself. [That fits in well with the idea of L. possibly having seen that he was lost if his opponent found e5, because there's no worse torture than sitting at the board hoping the other guy won't see the winning move and it really would be possible for a nervous person to feel sick with anxiety at such a time]

<Da er von dieser Absicht dem Komitee nicht vorher Mitteilung gemacht und also ohne Genehmigung desselben das Turnierlokal verlassen hatte, hielt das Schiedsgericht es für angebracht, Herrn Lasker eine Rüge wegen seines Verhaltens zu erteilen>

Since he hadn't notified the committee of that intention in advance and therefore left the place of the tournament without authorization, the court of arbitration found it appropriate to reprimand him for his conduct.

But how could he notify the committee in the middle of the game? It was probably some kind of disciplinary board that only held periodic meetings, I doubt that it was in session during the match. Are you supposed to predict your illness before the game even begins?

Aug-05-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <offramp....But was Lasker analysing 21. e5! on a pocket set?>

The committee failed to check Herr Lasker's shoes for silicon evidence.

Aug-05-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: "Hmm, Ich werde jetzt das alte Pocket Schachspiel nehmen!"
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