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Nicolas Rossolimo
Rossolimo ponders his move at a simultaneous exhibition, 1951.  
Number of games in database: 408
Years covered: 1936 to 1975

Overall record: +161 -72 =172 (61.0%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 3 exhibition games, blitz/rapid, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (59) 
    B31 B30 B52 B83 B40
 French Defense (22) 
    C07 C05 C03 C09 C00
 Giuoco Piano (21) 
    C54 C53 C50
 French Tarrasch (19) 
    C07 C05 C03 C09 C04
 Caro-Kann (17) 
    B10 B17 B18 B11 B13
 Reti System (13) 
    A04 A06 A05
With the Black pieces:
 Ruy Lopez (27) 
    C84 C77 C85 C89 C86
 Sicilian (26) 
    B54 B90 B93 B28 B59
 King's Indian (23) 
    E67 E94 E60 E80 E64
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (20) 
    C84 C89 C85 C86 C98
 Queen's Indian (19) 
    E17 E19 E14 E15 E18
 Nimzo Indian (18) 
    E38 E21 E59 E33 E32
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Rossolimo vs P Reissmann, 1967 1-0
   Rossolimo vs I Romanenko, 1948 1-0
   Rossolimo vs Livingstone, 1961 1-0
   L Barden vs Rossolimo, 1950 0-1
   Rossolimo vs C Kottnauer, 1948 1-0
   Rossolimo vs O'Kelly, 1949 1-0
   L Schmid vs Rossolimo, 1949 0-1
   Rossolimo vs A Dunkelblum, 1950 1-0
   Rossolimo vs Saidy, 1968 1-0
   Rossolimo vs Golombek, 1949 1-0

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Hastings 1948/49 (1948)
   Oldenburg (1949)
   55th US Open (1954)
   Amsterdam (1950)
   56th US Open (1955)
   US Championship (1966)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   1954 US Championship by crawfb5
   US Championship 1968/69 by suenteus po 147
   Hastings 1948/49 by suenteus po 147
   1950 Beverwijk Hoogovens by jww
   Hastings 1949/50 by suenteus po 147
   1951 Beverwijk Hoogovens by jww
   Hastings 1948/1949 by WCC Editing Project
   Hastings 1950/51 by suenteus po 147

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Nicolas Rossolimo
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(born Feb-28-1910, died Jul-24-1975, 65 years old) United States of America

[what is this?]
Nicholas Rossolimo was born in Kiev in the Ukraine. Awarded the IM title in 1950 and the GM title in 1953, he moved to Paris with his Russian mother in 1929. Whilst in France he finished 2nd behind Jose Raul Capablanca in 1938 in a tournament in Paris, won the French Championship in 1948, was Paris Champion 5 times and drew 2 matches in 1948 and 1949 with Savielly Tartakower. In 1953 he moved to the USA to be with his father and mother. He worked as a bellhop, a taxi driver, played the accordion and worked as a singer as well as running a chess studio to support himself. A multi-talented man, he spoke five languages and earned a brown belt in judo. He died of head injuries three days after accidentally falling down two flights of stairs in New York in 1975.

YouTube documentary made by <jessicafischerqueen>, <Crawfb5> and <Annie K.>:

Wikipedia article: Nicolas Rossolimo

 page 1 of 17; games 1-25 of 408  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Tartakower vs Rossolimo 1-0271936ParisB63 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer Attack
2. Rossolimo vs Capablanca ½-½161938ParisC50 Giuoco Piano
3. Capablanca vs Rossolimo 1-0291938ParisD63 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox Defense
4. C Chaude de Silans vs Rossolimo ½-½341939ParisA54 Old Indian, Ukrainian Variation, 4.Nf3
5. Rossolimo vs Foltys  1-0461947FRA-CSRA13 English
6. Rossolimo vs Pachman 0-1391947Hilversum ZonalA97 Dutch, Ilyin-Genevsky
7. A Tsvetkov vs Rossolimo  1-0631947Hilversum ZonalA41 Queen's Pawn Game (with ...d6)
8. Rossolimo vs Szabo  0-1441947Hilversum ZonalA13 English
9. T van Scheltinga vs Rossolimo  1-0661947Hilversum ZonalA57 Benko Gambit
10. Rossolimo vs C Doerner  1-0571947Hilversum ZonalA04 Reti Opening
11. Rossolimo vs K Plater  ½-½341947Hilversum ZonalA04 Reti Opening
12. B O'Sullivan vs Rossolimo 0-1101947Hilversum ZonalE17 Queen's Indian
13. Rossolimo vs Blau  1-0481947Hilversum ZonalA04 Reti Opening
14. O'Kelly vs Rossolimo 1-0411947Hilversum ZonalE32 Nimzo-Indian, Classical
15. Rossolimo vs Y Porat  ½-½451947Hilversum ZonalA15 English
16. C H Alexander vs Rossolimo 0-1381947Hilversum ZonalC18 French, Winawer
17. Rossolimo vs V Castaldi 1-0161947Hilversum ZonalD01 Richter-Veresov Attack
18. P Trifunovic vs Rossolimo  ½-½251947Hilversum ZonalA47 Queen's Indian
19. Rossolimo vs Tartakower  0-1401948MatchA06 Reti Opening
20. Rossolimo vs I Romanenko 1-0171948SalzburgB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
21. Prins vs Rossolimo  1-0731948HoogovenB54 Sicilian
22. H van Steenis vs Rossolimo  1-0661948HoogovenB84 Sicilian, Scheveningen
23. T van Scheltinga vs Rossolimo  ½-½291948HoogovenE38 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, 4...c5
24. H Kramer vs Rossolimo  ½-½271948HoogovenA22 English
25. Rossolimo vs Grob  1-0641948Bad GasteinA04 Reti Opening
 page 1 of 17; games 1-25 of 408  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Rossolimo wins | Rossolimo loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: < kingfu > Well,it looks like I'm fourth.
Feb-28-11  drnooo: this is the place and day for anybody else with any recollections of him to open up. He wounds like a fine guy: usually chess brings out the worst in a human being, usually, though there are plenty of exceptions. Larry Evans put it best: there are bad losers and good actors, but there are a few whom it truly just a game to, Tal I suspect never cried over a lost combat ever, not once. For Nick, well he undoubtedly sounds like he took the game more seriously, but retained his perspective. Maybe a list should be compiled on this site of all the decent chaps who attained some kind of greatness within the sixty four squares buttressed by anecdotes about them. Rossolimo certainly seems to belong fairly high up on that list.
Feb-28-11  parisattack: I helped a player a few years ago who was researching Rossolimo. Seems he had dug quite deep...lost track, unfortunately. My chess mentor, Eugene Salome, knew him quite well and told me a few stories. But insofar as they are third-hand I will abstain.

But Nick would certainly be a good subject for a chess bio and book!

Feb-28-11  TheFocus: <paris> Is Eugene Salome still alive?
Feb-28-11  parisattack: <The Focus> No, Eugene passed away in 1992 or so. He gave an Honors class at the university for several years, The Chess Tradition in Man's Culture relating chess to other disicplines such as art, mathematics, philosophy, literature ...

It was enormously popular with a huge waiting list each semester and he had some fairly big names come lecture. We had Stanislaw Ulam a couple of times and his pal Vladimir Nabokov recorded a lecture on Lushin's Defence for the class.

I taught it on occasion when he was ill and also gave a lecture once a semester myself. The classes were always taped and his wife, Nancy, gave all those to me.

Feb-28-11  TheFocus: <parisattack> In a recently discovered cross-table from the 1956 Greater New York City Open, Bobby Fischer met and defeated Eugene Salome. Did Mr. Salome ever mention it?

The game-score is lost however.

Feb-28-11  parisattack: Probably but not that I remember, <TheFocus> - its been a long time, though we chummed from 1968-1975 or so. Nancy and I went through all his papers (many boxes!) but I don't remember seeing a scoresheet w/Fischer; sure I would have noted it! :)
Feb-28-11  TheFocus: We can always dream!
Feb-28-11  parisattack: :) He was some stronger than the 'A' and 'B' classes he played in NY. Not sure on that but I know 1) He played on the same team as Rellstab in Germany and 2) He held his own against full masters and a couple of senior masters who passed through town.
Feb-28-11  TheFocus: Big thanks on that information.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: On a visit to New York in May 1975, weeks before his last triumph and accidental death, I got to play the old maestro in a simul during my first visit to his chess studio. While I don't remember much about the game, I believe he despatched me fairly quickly.
Mar-02-11  kingfu: Rossolimo got to play many great games against a list of Chess History's best:

Capablanca, CH Alexander, O'Kelly, Tartakower, Euwe, Pirc, Smyslov, Najdorf, Reshevsky, Tal, Bronstein, Benko, Korchnoi and Fischer.

Great stuff.

Premium Chessgames Member
  jessicafischerqueen: Here is a video documentary on the life and games of <IGM Nicolas Rossolimo>, featuring voice-over narration:

Written by Jessica Fischer
Narrated by Richard Dewoskin
Researched by Jessica Fischer, Larry Crawford, and Annie Kappel


This link below features biographical details about <Nicolas Rossolimo> posted by his son, Alexander, and also one of his grandsons. Go to the bottom of page two of this link to see the posts.

According to Alexander Rossolimo, his mother Vera wrote an autobiography (in Russian) that included all manner of historical details on her husband- she handed it over to a person who promised to translate it into English. She never saw her autobiography (only copy) or the man again.

Alexander Rossolimo:

<My late mother, Mme Vera A. Rossolimo, showed me her autobiography (which included much information about my father) in 1975, shortly after my father's death. She had typed it in Russian, and wanted to have it published. My mother had a fascinating life and background. Shortly afterwards, it was borrowed by someone who promised to have it translated into English and published. He was a visitor to my father's "Rossolimo Chess Studio" in Greenwich Village. However the autobiography was never returned. I hope that it still exists somewhere, and WOULD APPRECIATE ANY INFORMATION ABOUT IT, including any recollection of its contents from anyone who might have heard it from my mother.>

Feb-28-12  talisman: happy birthday to one of the greats.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: R.I.P. Rossolimo.
Jun-27-12  SBC: I published an article called, The Village Gambit," from Prof. Frank Brady's "Chessworld" magazine. It highlights the chess scene in NYC in 1964. Rossolimo's and Lisa Lane's chess venues are featured in it and anyone interested in that time might really enjoy it:
Aug-22-13  Karpova: Article from page 263 of the September 1969 'Chess Review' - <Today's Style in Ches>:
Aug-22-13  JoergWalter: <SBC>,<karpova> nice. thanks.
Feb-28-14  kereru: Very flashy player, his games are a lot of fun if not always sound.
Feb-28-14  chesssalamander: We should include in his bio that

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5

is the Rossolimo Variation of the Sicilian Defense.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: R.I.P. GM Nicolas Rossolimo.
May-22-15  TheFocus: <When one plays a weaker rival, one should always play for beauty for the benefit of both the players and the spectators, or else the game is a waste> - Nicholas Rossolimo, as recollected by William Lombardy on page 216 of his memoir Understanding Chess: My System, My Games, My Life.
Feb-28-16  TheFocus: Happy birthday, Nicolas Rossolimo.
Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: Very nice, when he plays B31 (Sicilian Rossolimo Variation), he is undefeated!! +3 -0 =2

Nov-14-18  Telemus: E. Winter published a C.N. on the Rossolimo variation:

He asks <When were the moves 1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 first played?> and offers a game Williams vs Withers from the CPC 1845 to set a mark.

Jay Whitehead's database (always interesting for games played between 1800 and 1867) has three games between James Alexander Robertson and a Harry Slater Wilson supposedly played in Portsmouth 1840 and London 1841. As usual with this database the sources still have to be found.

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