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Stefan Levitsky
Number of games in database: 71
Years covered: 1896 to 1914

Overall record: +22 -36 =12 (40.0%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 1 exhibition game, blitz/rapid, odds game, etc. is excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Giuoco Piano (5) 
 Sicilian (4) 
    B23 B44 B22
With the Black pieces:
 Vienna Opening (4) 
    C27 C25 C26
 Queen's Pawn Game (4) 
    D02 D00 D04
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   S Levitsky vs Alekhine, 1913 1-0
   Alekhine vs S Levitsky, 1912 0-1
   S Levitsky vs G Helbach, 1905 1-0
   S Levitsky vs A Rabinovich, 1912 1-0
   S Levitsky vs S Izbinsky, 1905 1-0
   S Levitsky vs M Lowcki, 1912 1-0
   S Levitsky vs Rubinstein, 1912 1/2-1/2

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Alekhine - Levitsky (1913)
   Vilnius All-Russian Masters (1912)
   18th DSB Kongress (1912)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Vilnius 1912 (All-Russian Masters) by Phony Benoni

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(born Apr-25-1876, died Mar-21-1924, 47 years old) Russia

[what is this?]
Stepan Mikhailovich Levitsky was born in Serpukhov, Russia. A contemporary of Mikhail Chigorin, he was Russian champion in 1911.

He played matches against Semion Alapin (Saint Petersburg, 1907) 1 which he lost 5-0 and against Alexander Alekhine (Alekhine - Levitsky (1913) - Saint Petersburg, 1913) which he lost 3-7 2.

He passed away in Glubokaya in 1924.


1. Di Felice, "Chess Results, 1901-1920", page 100.

2. Di Felice, "Chess Results, 1901-1920", page 205.

Wikipedia article: Stepan Levitsky

 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 71  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Steinitz vs S Levitsky 0-1281896Moscow sim2D00 Queen's Pawn Game
2. S Levitsky vs Steinitz  0-1211896Moscow exhC46 Three Knights
3. Lasker vs S Levitsky 1-0481896SimulC67 Ruy Lopez
4. S Levitsky vs B Yankovich  0-1431899MoscowC29 Vienna Gambit
5. S Levitsky vs Schiffers  ½-½2618991st All-Russian-ch MajorC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
6. S Levitsky vs Chigorin 0-14218991st All-Russian-ch MajorC66 Ruy Lopez
7. S Levitsky vs Salwe  1-04519033rd Russian National TournamentC30 King's Gambit Declined
8. S Levitsky vs Schiffers  1-05319033rd Russian National TournamentC70 Ruy Lopez
9. S Levitsky vs Dus Chotimirsky 1-03219033rd Russian National TournamentB23 Sicilian, Closed
10. S Levitsky vs P P Benko  0-13919033rd Russian National TournamentB44 Sicilian
11. Znosko-Borovsky vs S Levitsky 1-02419033rd Russian National TournamentB01 Scandinavian
12. S Izbinsky vs S Levitsky  1-06319033rd Russian National TournamentC41 Philidor Defense
13. M Lowcki vs S Levitsky  ½-½5019033rd Russian National TournamentD10 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
14. Rubinstein vs S Levitsky ½-½3819033rd Russian National TournamentC01 French, Exchange
15. S Levitsky vs B Nikolaev  1-03119033rd Russian National TournamentC28 Vienna Game
16. Salwe vs S Levitsky ½-½701905St. PetersburgA84 Dutch
17. Dus Chotimirsky vs S Levitsky  1-0261905St PetersburgD04 Queen's Pawn Game
18. S Levitsky vs Znosko-Borovsky  0-1251905St Petersburg itC10 French
19. S Levitsky vs S Izbinsky  1-0341905St PetersburgB12 Caro-Kann Defense
20. S Levitsky vs P A Evtifeev 1-0321905St. PetersburgB00 Uncommon King's Pawn Opening
21. S Levitsky vs E Talvik  0-1371905St PetersburgC31 King's Gambit Declined, Falkbeer Counter Gambit
22. S Levitsky vs G Helbach 1-0261905St. PetersburgB22 Sicilian, Alapin
23. B Maliutin vs S Levitsky 1-0221905St PetersburgC33 King's Gambit Accepted
24. S Levitsky vs Chigorin  0-1541906St. PetersburgA25 English
25. Rubinstein vs S Levitsky ½-½5619064th All Russian TournamentD32 Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch
 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 71  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Levitsky wins | Levitsky loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
Jul-04-05  Hidden Skillz: i guess not too bad result in the match against young alekhine..
Nov-04-05  rexeterna: Is this the same guy who created the Levitsky Attack (Opening of The Day Today)?
Premium Chessgames Member
  vonKrolock: He scored +3=0-7 in his St. Petersburg 1913 match against A A Alekhine. One of the games deeply analised and a Levitsky photo in this article by Voronkov here on-line (in Russian) on Alekhine's youth
Dec-22-08  sfm: What a star parade of opponents! Scoring 35% is world-class.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: I fear Levitsky is doomed to negative immortality, forever watching gold pieces shower down on the final position of S Levitsky vs Marshall, 1912.

Besides the Russian Championship victory in 1911 (16.5/21 against a relatively weak field), his best results were probably 3rd places in the championships of 1899 (behind Chigorin and Schiffers) and 1912 ( behind Rubinstein and Bernstein, but ahead of Nimzowitsch and Alekhine, defeating the latter twice).

Apr-25-09  WhiteRook48: it seems he's only known as a victim of the ...Qg3!!! against Marshall
Premium Chessgames Member
  technical draw: <Nov-04-05<rexeterna: Is this the same guy who created the Levitsky Attack (Opening of The Day Today)?>>

Let me answer you 5 1/2 years later:


Apr-25-12  Llawdogg: Hey, the guy took part in one of the greatest games of chess ever played.
Apr-25-12  LoveThatJoker: Master Levitsky played against some serious heavyweights - as evinced by the games in this database. The games that comprise the match between Alekhine and himself are very instructive.

You are remembered today, Master Levitsky!


Premium Chessgames Member
  mike1: There are certainly a lot of his games missing/lost. Guess that his percentage would be much higher than 40 with these included.
Apr-25-12  LoveThatJoker: <mike1> Yeah, man. I wonder if a database like say Mega Database 2012 has more games of his...probably. It would be good to get them on here for sure!


Aug-14-12  Karpova: In 1900, Levitsky beat Kulomsin by the score of 5.5-3.5 in a match in Moscow.

Source: Page 44 of the 1900 'Wiener Schachzeitung'

Aug-25-12  Karpova: A picture of Levitsky during St. Petersburg 1911:

Left to Right: Levitsky, Sossnitzky, P. P. Saburov, Flamberg

Feb-10-14  Karpova: Stefan Levitsky was born in 1876 in the gouvernement Voronezh and started to play chess at the age of 11.

His debut in 1899 (the 1st Russian National tournament) ended with a 3rd place behind Chigorin and Schiffers. He was less fortunate during the 3rd and 4th Russian tournament. At St.Petersburg (1907), he won 2nd place behind Znosko-Borovsky, but ahead of Alapin and von Freymann.

Source: Pages 339-340 of the November-December 1911 'Wiener Schachzeitung'

Feb-11-14  Karpova: More info provided by P. P. Saburov:

After his 1st place at the All-Russian Hauptturnier in St. Petersburg 1911,* the committee of the German Chess Federation decided to acknowledge him as a Master (Gebhardt told that to P. P. Saburov). Furthermore, the Breslau committee in principle agreed to admit him to 18th DSB Kongress (1912).

Stefan Levitsky was born on April 13/25, 1876 in Sadonsk (Gouvernement Voronezh). He learned to play chess around the age of 11. His first chance to play against a strong player arose at the end of 1891, when his family moved to Serpukhov (Gouvernement Moscow), where he met K. Wöhrmann - one of the strongest players in Moscow back then. The 15-year old Levitsky had an equal score against him.

Later he studied at the Moscow University, where he got the chance to play against the strongest players of Moscow and even foreign masters. When Schiffers travelled to Rostov on Don for his match against Steinitz (1896), Levitsky scored excellently in free games against him. Many considered him to be the most promising, young Russian player.

At the end of 1896, he went to Greece as a volunteer in the war against Turkey. On his travel back, he visited Kiev and played with great success against the strong players there.

In 1899, he came in 3rd in the 1st All-Russian tournament in Moscow (1st Chigorin, 2nd Schiffers). But then Levitsky moved to the far away <Nischni-Turinski-Fabrik> in the Gourvernement Perm. This was very detrimental to his chess development, although at first he could play there with the strong Moscow player Dmitry Nikolaevich Pavlov.

Rarely did he visit more civilized regions, i. e. in case of tournaments, but he didn't meet the expectations. In the 3rd All-Russian tournament (Kiev 1903) he reached a succès d'estime with his 8th place among 19 players (ahead of Schiffers, Duz Chotimirsky and Rabinovich). In the 4th All-Russian tournament (St. Petersburg 1905-1906), he played a fantastic game against Blumenfeld (will be submitted) and many other good games, but only came in 11th.

He was successful in the local St. Petersburg tournaments at the end of 1906 / beginning of 1907 (1st Znosko-Borovsky, 2nd Levitsky, then Alapin, Evtifeev, von Freymann, etc.). At the beginning of 1907, Levitsky played a match against Alapin which went very bad for him,** but only now it has become known, that he was in dire material needs back then. Since then, i. e. 4.5 years, Levitsky didn't have a chance to play against an equal opponent.

Source: Pages 349-351 of the November-December 1911 'Wiener Schachzeitung'

* See

** See

Apr-21-15  BIDMONFA: Stefan Levitsky


Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: Who now remembers the Ural master Stepan Mikhailovich Levitsky? But he was one of the most colourful figures of Russian chess. It is a pity that good portrait of him has not survived, but a life sketch by Gregory Levenfish partly fills this gap: "Tall, with a bushy beard, in appearance a real Mikula Selyaninovich [1], Levitsky infected others with his zest for life." In 1911, he won a brilliant victory at the All-Russian Hauptturnier (16.5 out of 21!), and in the autumn of the following year won the bronze medal of the Tournament of Russian Masters in Vilna, where Alekhine was not only in the lower half of the table, but lost both of his games to Levitsky!

Alas, the images of Alekhine's match with Levitsky have not survived.[2]

So his match with an experienced master was a serious test for Alekhine, and his victory was not as obvious as it may seem today. And that Alekhine wrote game commentaries - during the match! - for the newspaper "New Era", speaks of the importance he attached to single combat with Levitsky. Alekhine generally had a high opinion of his rival; a preserved phrase uttered in 1919: "Levitsky could have achieved much in his time, but he is too early departed from chess."


[1] "Mikula the Villager's Son" is a sturdy hero of Russian folklore.

[2] Alekhine - Levitsky (1913)

Test from original Russian in:

Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Happy birthday, Stefan Levitsky.
Apr-26-16  Hodor: Hodor!

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