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Ruy Lopez (C78)
1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4 Nf6 5 O-O

Number of games in database: 6045
Years covered: 1859 to 2021
Overall record:
   White wins 36.9%
   Black wins 25.2%
   Draws 38.0%

Popularity graph, by decade

Explore this opening  |  Search for sacrifices in this opening.
PRACTITIONERS
With the White Pieces With the Black Pieces
Viswanathan Anand  64 games
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave  60 games
Peter Svidler  50 games
Alexey Shirov  108 games
Antoaneta Stefanova  71 games
Alexander Onischuk  66 games
NOTABLE GAMES [what is this?]
White Wins Black Wins
Svidler vs Adams, 2000
Carlsen vs Beliavsky, 2006
Anand vs Ivanchuk, 1996
J Polgar vs Bacrot, 1999
Kamsky vs Svidler, 2011
Minic vs A Planinc, 1975
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 page 1 of 242; games 1-25 of 6,045 
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. P Journoud vs de Riviere 0-1661859Paris m2C78 Ruy Lopez
2. R Wormald vs F Burden  0-1281859MatchC78 Ruy Lopez
3. J G Campbell vs R Wormald  ½-½301859MatchC78 Ruy Lopez
4. P Journoud vs de Riviere  1-0481859Paris m2C78 Ruy Lopez
5. Loewenthal vs Morphy 1-0381859Casual gameC78 Ruy Lopez
6. Morphy vs H G Cattley 1-0311859Blindfold simul, 8bC78 Ruy Lopez
7. G Maude vs Kolisch  0-1241860London mC78 Ruy Lopez
8. G Maude vs Kolisch 0-1621860London mC78 Ruy Lopez
9. Kolisch vs Anderssen 1-0481861Anderssen - KolischC78 Ruy Lopez
10. Kolisch vs Paulsen  ½-½241861BristolC78 Ruy Lopez
11. NN vs V Grimm 0-1131864IstanbulC78 Ruy Lopez
12. G Neumann vs Paulsen  ½-½351864Paulsen - Neumann mC78 Ruy Lopez
13. G Neumann vs Paulsen 0-1561864Paulsen - Neumann mC78 Ruy Lopez
14. G Neumann vs Paulsen  1-0531864Paulsen - Neumann mC78 Ruy Lopez
15. Mackenzie vs G Reichhelm  ½-½531866New York mC78 Ruy Lopez
16. Mackenzie vs G Reichhelm  1-0291867MatchC78 Ruy Lopez
17. De Vere vs Kolisch 0-1301867ParisC78 Ruy Lopez
18. A Stern vs S Mieses 0-1221871Bad EmsC78 Ruy Lopez
19. S Rosenthal vs J Wisker  1-0471871MatchC78 Ruy Lopez
20. M Judd vs A Johnston 1-07418712nd American Chess CongressC78 Ruy Lopez
21. De Vere vs J Wisker  0-1441872BCA-04.Challenge CupC78 Ruy Lopez
22. G MacDonnell vs J Wisker  0-1811874London mC78 Ruy Lopez
23. Mackenzie vs M Judd ½-½4418743rd American Chess CongressC78 Ruy Lopez
24. J Congdon vs F Perrin 1-04718743rd American Chess CongressC78 Ruy Lopez
25. M Judd vs F Bock ½-½6218743rd American Chess CongressC78 Ruy Lopez
 page 1 of 242; games 1-25 of 6,045 
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jul-05-04  ruylopez900: hey, from the above position ...b5 and ...Bb7 lead to the dynamic Archangel Defense to the Ruy Lopez. Which is the prelude to an interesting trap I found (with help of course). If any holes found would be greatly appreciated to have them pointed out. --continued--
Jul-05-04  ruylopez900: 1. e4 e5
2. Nf3 Nc6
3. Bb5 a6
4. Ba4 Nf6
5. O-O b5
6. Bb3 Bb7<This is The Archangel> 7. d4 Nxd4
8. Nxd4 exd4<8.Bxf7 Kxf7 9.Nxf7+ Kg8 10.Qxd4 is also book.> 9. c3 Nxe4
10. Re1 Qh4
11. g3 Qf6
12. f3 Bc5
13. Kg2 d5
14. fxe4 dxe4<This is the trap bit, the Knight is off limits for now.> 15. cxd4 e3+
16. Kh3 Qh6+
17. Kg4 f5+
18. Kxf5 Rf8+<When I first analyzed this I though 0-0+ was cool, until I realized I castled into check :o> 19. Ke5 Bd6# 0-1<the King doesn't have to run here either but its mate in 1 anyways>
Jul-27-04  refutor: ruy lopez question for the people out there...i'm thinking about playing the archangel defense, except instead of the 6. ...Bb7 listed by ruylopez900 there is also a version that combines the 6. ...Bc5 and the ...Bb7. it was described in chess today as a "minor revolution in the ruy lopez, allowing black not just to play to equalize but to attack"(because of the bishop on c5 instead of e7 in the middle game). i've tried it in the past and i found it very easy for white to keep the center closed and make it difficult for black to counterattack with the bishops. to make a short story long, if i'm interested in playing the archangelsk, should i maybe play the classical ruy lopez to "warm up" to the middlegame positions?
Jul-27-04  OneArmedScissor: <RuyLopez900>

Wow that is a nifty little defensive trap set up. I like that alot actually. I'll have to try it out on my friends some time =] {N

Jul-27-04  refutor: an example of the kind of position that can be reached quite easily in the middlegame is

[Event "ACT Open"]
[Site "Amsterdam NED"]
[Date "2004.07.24"]
[Round "8"]
[White "Schoorl, R."]
[Black "Van Veen, O."]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C78"]
[WhiteElo "2225"]
[BlackElo "2269"]
[PlyCount "81"]
[EventDate "2004.07.17"]
[Source "Mark Crowther"]
[SourceDate "2004.07.26"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O b5 6. Bb3 Bb7 7. Re1 Bc5 8. c3 d6 9. d4 Bb6 10. Bg5 h6 11. Bh4 Qd7 12. Bxf6 gxf6 13. Bd5 O-O-O 14. a4 Rhg8 15. Kh1 Qg4... and white eventually won in 41 moves

Jan-07-05  Backward Development: This ECO code is also the start of the dynamic ...a6 and ...Bc5!? variation(is there a proper name?). This is often difficult to meet as white, provided black plays accurately, but it is often black who must walk the tightrope. Here's an example from a game i played yesterday. White-BD
Black-Ronald Riepen(NN)
Time-G\100
1.e4 e5
2.Nf3 Nc6
3.Bb5 a6
4.Ba4 Nf6
5.0-0 Bc5!?(the beginning of the dynamic variation. It's strengths are rapid development and a possible attack. It's weaknesses are it's weakened kingside and center.)

6.c3!?(I worried about this move because i was afraid if black opened the center quickly, he might get a massive attack.)

...b5
7.Bc2!?(The more active Bb3 was prefered by Fritz, but I was out of book and worried. Funnily enough, this is the main line.)

...0-0?(...d5?! meets
d4 dxe4 Nxe5 Nxe5 dxe5 Qxd1 Rxd1 Ng4 Bxe4! Rb8 Bc6+ Ke7 Bg5 with play against the King -- Shirov-Ivanchuk 1998(that was courtesy of MCO. naturally if I had met d5, I may have lost.)

This weak move isn't even mentioned in the opening manuals. the main line continued...d6 d4 Bb6!? and the center is safe enough to move the bishop away.)

8.d4!(the thematic break seizes the initiative)

...ed(forced.)

9.cd Bb6?(This loses outright. The grovelling ...Be7 was the only defense, but White is already almost winning after e5 Ne8.)

(Here i took a deep think, calculating the consequences of e5. I knew that if i didn't whip up a whirlwind attack, my center could very easily come under considerable pressure. I nearly passed it by until i realized the vulnerablities of black's position.) 10.e5! Nd5

(Here i sat for about seven minutes calculating all of the variations twice. My opponent sat bored yet perplexed. White to play and win.) 11.Bxh7!(The Greek Gift. This sacrifice is absolutely correct, and i had calculated it thus, but while awaiting his next several replies, I was visibly shaking. Gotta work on nerves!)

...Kxh7 (Kh8 loses thus
...Kh8 Be4 Nde7 d5! f5! exf6 gxf6 dc and i ended here.)

12.Ng5 Kg8?(this loses very quickly.

The critical line ran
...Kg6 Qd3+ f5!(this resource I was very careful not to overlook.) exf6+ Kxf6 Qf3+ Kg6 Qe4+ Rf5 g4 Nde7 gf+ Nxf5 Nc3! Qg4 Nh6! Qg2 Nf5 Nd5 Qg4 Ncxd4 Ne4+ Kh7 Ndf6+! and wins. Naturally, I only calculated to gf+. Fritz supplied the rest. But I'm sure I'd have found the rest. except maybe Nc3! that's a star move.)

13.Qh5(Black WILL be mated unless he gives up his queen. The line runs ...Re8 Qxf7+ Kh8 Qh5+ Kg8 Qh7+ Kf8 Qh8+ Ke7 Qxg7#. If not for the very instructive 'Greco Mate', I would never have considered the Bxh7+ sac and the following ideas.)

...Qxg5(I was disappointed by this move, but is was the only way to hold on.) 14.Bxg5 etc. 1-0 in several more moves.

Be Wary in that System! and Remember This Attack as White!

Feb-26-05  Backward Development: here's a 2'+12" I played today. Very interesting game.

some lines by Fritz 8:
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O b5 6. Bb3 Bb7 7. Re1 Bc5 8. c3 Bb6 9. d4 d6 10. a4 O-O 11. h3TN < <11.Bg5 Kotronias vs Dorfman, 1988;The idea is to stop any ...Ng4 ideas in conjunction with the Bishop on c5 so i can play d5 safely.> 11... Re8
12. d5!? Ne7?!<12...Na5 13.Bc2 c6 14.dxc6 Bxc6 15.Bg5 Qe7 is roughly even.> 13. Nbd2<standard Lopez play.> Ng6 14. Nf1 c6!<It was ripe time to play in the center.> 15. dxc6 Bxc6 16. Ng5?!<16.Ng3 was more prudent, although there was still no stopping 16...d5!> Nh8?<This move is dreadful, and spoils a favorable position. 16...d5! 17.exd5 Bxd5 18.Be3 Bc7 19.Bxd5 Nxd5 20.axb5 axb5 21.Rxa8 Qxa8 and black has nothing to fear. White's knight on f1 looks particularly ridiculous; The position isn't closed anymore!> 17. Ne3 <17. axb5 axb5 18. Rxa8 Bxa8=> 17... Ra7 <17... h6 18. axb5 axb5 19. Rxa8 Qxa8 /+ because e4 falls> 18. Nd5 Nxd5
19. Bxd5 Bxd5
20. Qxd5 Qd7? <20... bxa4 21. Rxa4 Ng6 22.Nf3 +//> 21. axb5 <21. a5 Bd8 22. Rd1 +/> 21... a5? <21... axb5 is better.> 22. Be3?!<22.c3! Ng6 23.Rd1 Rc8 24.Qd3 d5!? 25.exd5 h6 26.Nf3 e4 27.Qxe4 Rxc3 +/> 22...Bxe3
23. Rxe3 Ng6
24. Qc6!? Qxc6
25. bxc6 Rc7? <25... Rc8 +//> 26. Rxa5 Rxc6
27. b3 Nf4
28. c4 h6
29. Nf3 Ne6
30. Rd3?! <30. Ra3 Rb8 +/> 30... Rb8 <30... Nc5 31. Rxd6 Rxd6 32. Rxc5 +//> 31. Rad5 <31. Nd2 $142 $16> 31... Rd8? <That it loses a tempo is clear, but it also fails tactically.> 32. Nxe5!<missed this shot.> 32...Rb6
33. g3 Nc5?
34. Rd1?<Now i missed the shot! 34. Rxc5! wins. Rdb8 35. Rc6 dxe5 36. Rxb6 Rxb6 37. c5 > 34... Nxe4
35. c5 Nxc5 <+//>
36. Rxc5!? dxc5?? <36... Rdb8 is just about the only chance 37. Rcd5 dxe5 38. Rxe5 R8b7 => 37. Rxd8+ < >
37...Kh7
38. Rc8 Rxb3 39. Rxc5 f6 40. Ng4 Rb6 41. Kf1 Rb1+ 42. Ke2 Rb2+ 43. Kf3 Rb4 44. Rc7 Kg6 45. Re7 h5 46. Nh2 Ra4 47. h4 Rb4 48. g4 hxg4+ 49. Nxg4 Rb3+ 50. Re3 Rb4 51. Kg3 Kh5 52.f3 f5 53. Re5 g6 54. Nf6+ Kh6 55. Re7 g5 56. h5 g4 57. f4??<in time trouble, I miss the win. 57. fxg4 fxg4 58. Kh4 g3+
59. Ng4+ Rxg4+ 60. Kxg4 g2 61. Re1 Kh7 62. Rg1 Kg8 63. Rxg2 Kf7 64. h6 Ke7 65.h7 Kd8 66. h8=Q+ Kc7 67. Qc3+ Kd8 68. Rd2+ Ke7 69. Qe5+ Kf8 70. Rd7 Kg8 71.Qe8#>
57... Rb3+ <+/>
58. Kf2 Rf3+
59. Ke2 Rxf4
60. Ng8+?<throws away the winning chances.
60... Kxh5 =
61. Nf6+ Kh4 <"The black king gets dangerous"-Fritz> 62.Rh7+ <Here I offered a draw, but since I had less time, he declined and made an instant move.> 62...Kg3??
<62... Kg5 63.Nd5 Re4+ 64. Kf1 Rd4 65. Nc3 f4 66. Rg7+ Kh4 67. Rh7+ Kg5 68. Rg7+ Kf5 69. Ne2 Rd1+ 70. Kf2 g3+ 71. Nxg3+ fxg3+ 72. Rxg3=> 63. Nh5+ Kg2
64. Nxf4+ < For the last time! Here even I can convert. I won.> 1-0

Oct-10-05  Averageguy: White seems to get dominating positions against the Bc5/Bb7 systems. A game I played a while ago as white goes: 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 b5 6.Bb3 Bb7 7.c3 Bc5 8.d4 cxd4 9.exd4 Bb6 10.e5 Ng4(losing a pawn to a tactical shot)11.Bxf7+ Kxf7 12.Ng5+ Ke8 (12...Kg8 13.Qb3+ mates)13.Qxg4 Nxd4 14.Nxh7 (The shot that my opponent over looked, if 14...Rxh7 15.Qg6+ forks the king and rook) 14...Ne2+ (a deflection sac, 15.Qxe2 Rxh7 would limit blacks losses) 15.Kh1 Nxc1 16.Qg6+ (for some reason or another I didn't play 16.Qxg7, which would trap the rook) 16...Ke7 17.Qxg7+ Ke6 18.Ng5+ Kd5 19.Nc3+ Kc6 (19...Kd4 20.Ne6+ dxe6 21.Rd1+)20.Raxc1 d6 21.Ne4+ Bc5 22.Nxc5 dxc5 23.Rxc5+ Kxc5 24.Ne6+ and in this position I won his queen and pushed the e pawn up, I should have won easily but I allowed my opponent to escape with a prepetual check. Comments on my play would be appreciated.
Oct-24-05  ltsiros: I need help refuting a line. After 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4 Nf6 5 0-0, an opponent played 5 ... Ng4 the other day on FICS. I intituively responded 6 h3, but 6 ... h5 leads to a wild piece sacrifice by black, with attack on the h column (for example 7 hxg4 hxg4 and then the Q travels to the h column). I analyzed with some programs and the best alternative seems to be 6 d4, with equality. Any help/guidelines in this variation? Aparently it wasn't played at master level...
Oct-24-05  Stevens: <ltsiros> hmm, this looks quite interesting. Having played over a few times Chess Partner (which never seems to be that strong) i see no direct "refutation." When i get a chance to sit down with a board i'll have a look. What i can see is that if white can play g3 it stops the black queen getting to the h file, and after ...gxf3, Qxf3 white looks ok. I think the best idea, as you mentioned, seems to be to ignore the knight and continue with something like d4.

I'll try to look more later...

Oct-24-05  hintza: 6.h3 is completely unnecessary, the knight is doing nothing on g4. If 6.d4 Black can't take on d4 without having his Ng4 attacked by White's queen after Nxd4.
Oct-24-05  ughaibu: I suggest using the 'wasted' tempo of Ng4 and playing c3 before d4, this allows the knight to remain on f3 in any case.
Nov-08-05  Hesam7: Any good opening books for the 6... Bc5 system?
Nov-08-05  AdrianP: <Hesam7> Some good coverage in the Khalifman's magisterial and exhaustive "Opening for White according to Anand" - I don't remember which volume, maybe 2 or 3. I can't think of a monograph specifically on 6. ...Bc5.
Nov-08-05  Hesam7: <AdrianP> your response is greatly appreciated. Thanks :-)
Nov-08-05  Hesam7: <AdrianP> From the description here: http://uscfsales.com/item.asp?cID=1... it seems that it is volume 2. Isn't this written for white players?
Nov-08-05  acirce: It is a great book, highly recommended indeed, but yes, it is part of a repertoire series for White players.
Nov-09-05  Hesam7: <acirce> thanks for the info. So far from what I have heared and read I have formed the impression that both series [Opening for white according to Kranmik and Anand] are very well written and nice. For Modern Arkhangel the best I could find was this book:

<Arkhangel and new Arkhangel, Panczyk and Emms.>

There is a small chapter by Emms on modern Arkhangel. Anyway it is better than nothing.

Nov-11-05  Hesam7: Does anybody have the following book:

<Arkhangelsk System in the Ruy Lopez, Jerry Konikowski>

Jun-11-06  a30seclegend: Yep, but i believe it is Jerzy Konikowski.
Aug-20-06
Premium Chessgames Member
  WTHarvey: Here are some traps n zaps in C78 miniatures: http://www.wtharvey.com/c78.html
Oct-24-06  Stevens: has anybody ever seen this move? i have looked in all the databases i have access to and can find no games that relate to it. it seems odd, as there is seemingly no refutation. is it a novelty? i have tried it in a few games with good results.

Opening Explorer

in this position black plays 8...Nxe4, with 9.Qe2 Bxf2+ 10.Rxf2 Nxf2 to follow.


click for larger view

Black has a rook and pawn for 2 minor pieces. I think whites best continuation is 11.Qxf2. If the knight isn't captured immediately then the move ...Nh3+ is appealing, doubling the h pawns, since the knight is lost anyway. If white tries 11.Nxe5 as in the game below, he can soon run into trouble. Can anybody add any input? At worst it has surprise value, a tactical position with even chances with uneven material.

ECO C78

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O b5 6. Bb3 Bc5 7. a4 Rb8 8. c3 Nxe4 9. Qe2 Bxf2+ 10. Rxf2 Nxf2 11. Nxe5 O-O 12. Kxf2 Qh4+ 13. Kg1 Nxe5 14. Qxe5 Bb7 15. d4 Rbe8 16. Qg3 Qxg3 17. hxg3 Re1+ 18. Kh2 Rxc1 19. axb5

Oct-24-06  e4Newman: now that's a wide open game - very tactical - not sure which side i'd rather play

i imagine initiative would be very important

can't recommend any improvements right away, this would require a lot of thought...many candidate moves

crafty thinks white is much better off, must be the material imbalance

Oct-24-06  Stevens: <e4newman> thanks for the response

<i imagine initiative would be very important > yes, i think you are right. with preperation and some familiarity with the position though, i think black would have good attacking chances. he can mobilise quite quickly and the white queenside is undeveloped.

<crafty thinks white is much better off, must be the material imbalance> i've done a bit of work with fritz on this line, and it sees the position as unclear. It actually likes 8...Nxe4 9.Qe2 d5, but this isn't what i wanted out of the 8th move. I liked the idea of unbalancing with the rook and pawn vs knight and bishop.

If you have any time to look at this i'd be most grateful for any furthur analysis.

Oct-24-06  who: <ruy> what if 16.d5 (Fritz)?
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