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Henry Charlick
Number of games in database: 36
Years covered: 1868 to 1895
Overall record: +17 -10 =9 (59.7%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games.

Repertoire Explorer
Most played openings
C42 Petrov Defense (4 games)
C22 Center Game (4 games)
C67 Ruy Lopez (3 games)
C00 French Defense (2 games)
C28 Vienna Game (2 games)
C31 King's Gambit Declined, Falkbeer Counter Gambit (2 games)

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(born Jul-08-1845, died Jul-26-1916, 71 years old) United Kingdom (federation/nationality Australia)

[what is this?]
Charlick won the second Australian Championship (1887) (and the first tournament for that title), held in Adelaide. The gambit line 1.d4 e5?! 2.dxe5 d6 is sometimes called the Charlick Gambit, but is considered unsound today. See H W Apperly vs H Charlick, 1894 for an entertaining example.

Wikipedia article: Henry Charlick

Try our new games table.

 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 36  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. H Charlick vs L Ellis 0-1591868Adelaide CC v Melbourne CC Telegraph MatchC51 Evans Gambit
2. H Charlick vs C W Benbow 0-1381880corrA85 Dutch, with c4 & Nc3
3. H Charlick vs J Mann 1-0301880corrC21 Center Game
4. J Watson vs H Charlick 0-1241880Offhand gameC31 King's Gambit Declined, Falkbeer Counter Gambit
5. Ott vs H Charlick 0-1251881Casual gameC28 Vienna Game
6. H Charlick vs J Mann 0-1611883corrC28 Vienna Game
7. H Charlick vs Blackburne 0-1331885SimulC66 Ruy Lopez
8. Blackburne vs H Charlick 1-0231885SimulC13 French
9. Blackburne vs H Charlick ½-½221885SimulC11 French
10. Blackburne vs H Charlick 0-1151885Simul, 25bC31 King's Gambit Declined, Falkbeer Counter Gambit
11. G B Hall vs H Charlick 1-0601887AdelaideC40 King's Knight Opening
12. G B Hall vs H Charlick 0-13518871st Australian Championship, AdelaideC42 Petrov Defense
13. H Charlick vs P Eiffe 1-02318871st Australian Championship, AdelaideC80 Ruy Lopez, Open
14. D Heiman vs H Charlick 0-11918871st Australian Championship, AdelaideC42 Petrov Defense
15. H Charlick vs Gossip ½-½3518871st Australian Championship, AdelaideC00 French Defense
16. H Charlick vs W Tullidge 1-07018871st Australian Championship, AdelaideB20 Sicilian
17. F K Esling vs H Charlick ½-½4618871st Australian Championship, AdelaideC22 Center Game
18. J E Crewe vs H Charlick 0-13618871st Australian Championship, AdelaideD50 Queen's Gambit Declined
19. H Charlick vs J G Witton 1-03218871st Australian Championship, AdelaideB23 Sicilian, Closed
20. H Hookham vs H Charlick ½-½4618871st Australian Championship, AdelaideD05 Queen's Pawn Game
21. H Charlick vs W Tullidge 1-06518882nd Australian Championship, MelbourneC84 Ruy Lopez, Closed
22. P Lampe vs H Charlick 0-13618882nd Australian Championship, MelbourneC42 Petrov Defense
23. H Charlick vs W Crane ½-½7918882nd Australian Championship, MelbourneC67 Ruy Lopez
24. J S Stanley vs H Charlick ½-½2718882nd Australian Championship, MelbourneC24 Bishop's Opening
25. J Higgs vs H Charlick 0-12818882nd Australian Championship, MelbourneC42 Petrov Defense
 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 36  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Charlick wins | Charlick loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
Jul-10-06  sandmanbrig: Charlick is a horrible disgrace to chess players.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheAlchemist: Why is that?

BTW, isn't there a Charlick Gambit?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: The Charlick game given is an example of his gambit: 1.d4 e5 2.dxe5 d6. White doesn't play it very well.
Jul-18-06  sandmanbrig: Whoops. I must have thought Apperly was black for a second. Apperly is the disgrace.
May-02-08  handle: Hehe, this is funny because his win % is higher than most major grandmasters, because there are only 11 games.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Henry Charlick (1845-1916) was arguably the strongest player in South Australia in the 2nd half of the 19th century. His competitive play started in 1868, with a victory in the Adelaide Chess Club Handicap Tournament, as well as losing his game against M Ellis in a Adelaide v Melbourne 7 board telegraphic match. Charlick also authored a long standing chess column in the "Adelaide Advertiser" from 1868 up to the early part of the 20th century. He also authored a chess column in the "Literary Societies Journal" from 1904 to 1910.

As well as competing and winning the 1887 Australian championship in Adelaide, Charlick also edited the tournament book, which had the imposing title of "The Adelaide Jubilee Intercolonial Chess Congress, 1887 - A Collection of the Games Played in the First Australian Chess Congress Illustrated by Diagrams and Copious Critical and Explanatory Notes. Also, A History of this Celebrated Gathering, Together with an Account of its Favourable Treatment by the Public and the Press".

Despite winning the Australian Championship with an impressive score of +7, =3, -0, the press of the day judged his play to be passive and dull. To quote the "Leader":

"The play of the chief prize winner, Mr Charlick, displays a tameness which was not expected, having regard to the reputation he enjoyed for dashing chess. His style of play is "drawish" throughout. Mr Esling overlooked an easy win against him. His game with Mr Gossip, dismissed as a draw, was certainly in favour of the Sydney player and Mr Hookham at one time had a winning game against him. In his game with Heiman the latter, by an egregious slip, threw away his queen when he had a good position; and with Mr Tullidge he should have lost the exchange with an inferior game. Mr Charlick has publicly stated that if his adversaries failed to take their advantages he could say that he never neglected to take them when they were offered to him, and with regard to the style of his play he had restrained his impetousity, and sought throughout to play a sound steady game. We have no fault to find with this statement; but lost positions certainly form blemishes in his games, and the skill of his opponents may have kept his resolution to play with extreme caution very prominently before him."

After losing a play-off match to W Crane for the 1888 Australian Championship in Melbourne, Charlick retired from competitive play.

Source: Cathy Chua "Australian Chess At The Top", Pioneer Books, Adelaide, 1998.

Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Mr. Charlick had studied all departments of the game, and was well known as a composer of problems. Many of his games and problems are preserved in standard European works on chess. He had considerable experience in correspondence play with notable opponents. His style of play may be said to have been after the manner of the unparalleled Paul Morphy, whose tactics Mr. Charlick adopted in preference to those of that clever analyst and annotator, Steinitz. The result was that Mr. Charlick was a very successful odds giver. He was noted for his modest, unassuming demeanour. When he was 19 years of age he joined the reporting staff of The Register, and transferred to the commercial department of the paper, in which position he remained for 39 years, and after he left, in August, 1903, in addition to conducting the chess column for The Observer, he still kept in touch with the office through the advertising department. He has left a widow and four sons — Messrs. H. W., L. S., and R. Charlick, and Pte. G. A. Charlick, now at the front —and two daughters— Misses E. and A. Charlick.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Following upon this remarkable achievement, he in the same year was mainly instrumental in inaugurating intercolonial chess matches, by arranging the first contest between Adelaide and Melbourne. When Blackburne visited Adelaide many years ago Mr. Charlick's record against the Englishman was one win, three draws, and five lost. Mr. Char hck was the first to hold the title of chess champion of Australasia, through his vic tory in the chess congress at Adelaide in 1887. In the following year he tied for first place with Crane, of Sydney, and the play-off resulted in Crane's favour. For 30 years Mr. Charlick held the chess championship of South Australia, and then generously retired, partly because he felt that he was not physically equal to much strenuous match play, and partly to en courage younger players. He was the inventor of the Charlick centre gambit, with which he was remarkably successful against strong players. Some of his endings in match play are among the finest in association chess literature. He was for many years Secretary of the Adelaide Chess Club, and in February, 1868, he originated the chess column in The Adelaide Observer, and had ever since continued to edit it; and that so efficiently that those competent to judge of such matters could never sufficiently express their admiration of the evidence the column afforded of painstaking theoretical soundness and subtlety.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: A detailed obituary notice from the Adelaide Register newspaper, dated Friday 28 July 1916:

Champion Chessplayer. Mr. Henry Charlick died suddenly at his residence, Unley Park, on Wednesday evening. He was 71 years of age on July 8, having been born in 1845 at Tottenham Court road, London. He arrived in South Australia with his parents (Mr. and Mrs. Richard Charlick) in the ship Calphurnia in April, 1848. The deceased was a noted chess celebrity, and was champion of Australia in 1887-8. It was at the Adelaide Mechanics' Institute, and at the age of 15, that he learned the moves and laws of the game, in the conduct of which he subsequently acquired so marked a proficiency. While yet a boy he vanquished all the players he met with. Possessed of an omnivorous and insatiable appetite for the game, he devoured all book knowledge then obtainable, and combined with this important acquisition as much practical experience as was within his reach. His theoretical knowledge, backed up with a singularly retentive memory, soon rendered him so formidable a competitor on the chequered.board that there is no manner of doubt but that he could have taken rank, if opportunity offered, among the most brilliant amateurs of the day. When not yet 18 he played two games at once blindfolded at the Institute against strong players, and won both of them. These games were re corded and published. When subjected to a searching criticism, they were pronounced brilliant and correct. In 1864, when 19, he played in the first handicap tournament held in Adelaide, and won the first prize. Later he competed in the greatest tourney, in point of numbers and strength of the players, that has ever been held in Adelaide. In this series of en counters he gave odds to all except those ranked in his own class. He won the first prize, without losing a single game, his score being 23 won games, losing none, and only one drawn.

Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Here is a Charlick victory that I have just uploaded to the database:

[Event "corr"]
[Site "Australia"]
[Date "1880.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Henry Charlick"]
[Black "J Mann"]
[Result "1-0"]

1. e4 e5 2. d4 exd4 3. ♗c4 ♗b4+ 4. c3 dxc3 5. bxc3 ♕f6 6. ♕b3 ♗c5 7. ♘f3 ♘c6 8. O-O d6 9. ♗e3 ♗b6 10. ♗d4 ♘xd4 11. cxd4 ♘e7 12. e5 dxe5 13. dxe5 ♕g6 14. ♘bd2 O-O 15. ♗d3 ♗f5 16. ♘h4 ♕h5 17. ♘xf5 ♘xf5 18. ♔h1 ♖ae8 19. ♖ae1 ♖e6 20. ♖e4 ♖fe8 21. g4 ♕h3 22. ♖f4 ♘d4 23. ♕c4 c5 24. ♖g1 ♕h4 25. ♘e4 ♕d8 26. g5 ♖xe5 27. ♕xf7+ ♔h8

click for larger view

28. ♘f6 ♖8e7 29. ♖h4 h6 30. ♕g6 1-0

Source: The Hull Packet and East Riding Times (Hull, England), Thursday, April 14, 1881

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <Graham Clayton> Just came across a Charlick game in the <Baltimore American> for January 9, 1881, quoted from the <Adelaide Observer>:

Watson - Charlick, Henry
Offhand game Adelaide, 1880

<1.e4 e5 2.f4 d5 3.exd5 e4 4.Nc3 Nf6 5.Be2 Bc5 6.d4 exd3 7.Qxd3 0-0 8.Nf3 Re8 9.Nd4 Bg4 10.Kd1 Na6 11.a3 Qe7 12.h3 Bxd4 13.hxg4 Bxc3 14.bxc3 Nc5 15.Qc4 Nxd5 16.Bd2 Rad8 17.Bd3 Ne4 18.Kc1 Nxd2 19.Bxh7+ Kf8 20.Qd3 Nxf4 21.Qf5 Ne2+ 22.Kb2 Rd6 23.Ra2 Rb6+ 24.Ka1

click for larger view

Ng1! 0-1>

Some interesting knight play in there. I'd like to submit it, but his opponent is given only as "Mr. Watson". Would you happen to know some more information?

Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: <Phoney Benoni>Some interesting knight play in there. I'd like to submit it, but his opponent is given only as "Mr. Watson". Would you happen to know some more information?

<Phoney Benoni>,
You are in luck. From the "Australian Town and Country Journal", dated 18 December 1880, which quotes the "Adelaide Observer":


Mr J Watson, formerly of Sunbury and Williamstown, Victoria, and latterly of Melbourne, and occasionally a contributer to our chess column, paid a vist to Adelaide last week. As might be expected of an enthusiast of the game, he intended repairing to the Chess Club, but unfortunately circumstances prevented him. On Monday evening, October 4, he waited upon ourselves, and after a pleasant chat about chess and chess players, recourse was naturally had to the board and men. Only one game was played, and that was but a skittling skirmish. Nevertheless we append it as an interesting reminiscence."

So we find the first initial of Mr Watson plus the date of the game.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <Graham Clayton> Thanks for the information.
Jul-08-13  optimal play: <<<<MANY HAPPY RETURNS.>

Henry Charlick, of Adelaide.>

Mr. Henry Charlick entered his seventieth year on 8th July last. He was champion of Australia in 1887-8, through winning first prize at the Adelaide Jubilee Intercolonial Chess Congress.

Mr. Charlick played for 54 years, and learnt the moves and laws of the game at the old Mechanics' Institute, Adelaide. As a boy of 15 Mr. Charlick, within a few months of study, defeated all competitors, and was only three years older when he conducted two games at the same time blindfold, and won both in two hours. These were recorded and published, and when subjected to searching criticism were pronounced to be brilliant and correct.

Mr. Charlick holds the record in Australia for the greatest number of simultaneous games - 28, in 1891, with 24 victories, 1 loss and 3 draws. The time was three hours. He was South Australian champion from 1864 to 1894, when he voluntarily retired. He is still chess editor of the Adelaide "Observer."

Mr. Charlick has been for over 20 years adjudicator on the unfinished games in the matches between Victoria and New South Wales. His awards have given satisfaction to both sides. The chess players of Melbourne and Sydney appreciate very highly the services rendered to Australian chess by Mr. Charlick.>

- Leader (Melbourne, Vic.) issue Saturday 1 August 1914>

Photograph of Mr Henry Charlick circa 1880's

Jan-19-15  GoldenBird: Is the charlick gambit total garbage? Or no?
Feb-12-15  optimal play: This game was extracted from the South Australian Weekly Chronicle (Adelaide, SA) issue Saturday 23 May 1885 page 15

WHITE. Mr. J. H. Blackburne.

BLACK. Mr. H. Charlick.

King's Gambit Declined

1. P to K 4 ; P to K 4 ; 2. P to K B 4 ; P to Q 4 ; 3. Kt to K B 3 ; B to K Kt 5 ; 4. B to K 2 ; P takes K B P ; 5. P takes P ; B takes Kt ; 6. B takes B ; Q to R 5 ch ; 7. K to B sq ; Kt to Q 2 ; 8. P to Q 4 ; Castles ; 9. P to Q B 4 ; R to K sq ; 10. Kt to B 3 ; K Kt to B 3 ; 11. B to Q 2 ; P to K Kt 4 ; 12. Q to R 4 ; P to K Kt 5 ; 13. B to Q sq ; Kt to K R 4 ; 14. Q takes R P ; P to B 6 ; 15. Kt to Kt 5 ; And Charlick announced mate in five moves.

click for larger view

(15...Ng3+ 16.Kg1 f2+ 17.Kxf2 Nxh1+ 18.Kg1 Qf2+ 19.Kxh1 Qf1#)

[Event "Simultaneous exhibition"]
[Site "Adelaide, Australia"]
[Date "1885.??.??"]
[EventDate "?"]
[Round "?"]
[Result "0-1"]
[White "Joseph Henry Blackburne"]
[Black "Henry Charlick"]
[ECO "C31"]
[WhiteElo "?"]
[BlackElo "?"]
[PlyCount "29"]

1. e4 e5 2. f4 d5 3. Nf3 Bg4 4. Be2 exf4 5. exd5 Bxf3 6. Bxf3 Qh4+ 7. Kf1 Nd7 8. d4 O-O-O 9. c4 Re8 10. Nc3 Ngf6 11. Bd2 g5 12. Qa4 g4 13. Bd1 Nh5 14. Qxa7 f3 15. Nb5 0-1

Feb-12-15  optimal play: Another game between Charlick & Blackburne from the South Australian Weekly Chronicle (Adelaide, SA) issue Saturday 23 May 1885 page 15

WHITE. Mr. J. H. Blackburne.

BLACK. Mr. H. Charlick.

French Game.

1. P to K 4 ; P to K 3 ; 2. P to Q 4 ; P to Q 4 ; 3. Kt to Q B 3 ; Kt to K B 3 ; 4. P takes P ; P takes P ; 5. Kt to K B 3 ; B to Q 3 ; 6. B to Q 3 ; Castles ; 7. Castles ; B to K 3 ; 8. Kt to K 2 ; Kt to B 3 ; 9. Kt to Kt 3 ; Q to Q 2 ; 10. B to K Kt 5 ; Kt to K sq ; 11. R to K sq ; P to K B 3 ; 12. B to Q 2 ; B takes Kt ; 13. R P takes B ; Kt to Q 3 ; 14. P to B 3 ; Q R to K sq ; 15. Q to B 2 ; B to K B 4 ; 16. B to K B 4 ; B takes B ; 17. Q takes B ; 17. Kt to K 5 ; 18. Kt to Q 2 ; P to K Kt 4 ; 19. Kt takes Kt ; P takes Kt ; 20. Q to B 4 ch ; Q to B 2 ; 21. Q takes Q ch ; R takes Q ; 22. B to Q 2 ; K R to K 2 ; White here proffered a draw, which was accepted.

click for larger view

[Event "Simultaneous exhibition"]
[Site "Adelaide, Australia"]
[Date "1885.??.??"]
[EventDate "?"]
[Round "?"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[White "Joseph Henry Blackburne"]
[Black "Henry Charlick"]
[ECO "C11"]
[WhiteElo "?"]
[BlackElo "?"]
[PlyCount "44"]

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. exd5 exd5 5. Nf3 Bd6 6. Bd3 O-O 7. O-O Be6 8. Ne2 Nc6 9. Ng3 Qd7 10. Bg5 Ne8 11. Re1 f6 12. Bd2 Bxg3 13. hxg3 Nd6 14. c3 Rae8 15. Qc2 Bf5 16. Bf4 Bxd3 17. Qxd3 Ne4 18. Nd2 g5 19. Nxe4 dxe4 20. Qc4+ Qf7 21. Qxf7+ Rxf7 22. Bd2 Rfe7 1/2-1/2

Jul-24-15  thomastonk: Since Mr Charlick has some friends here, I would like to mention two early games between him and "Mr.H.Tullidge" (maybe William Tullidge), which are published in the "Illustrated London News" volume 53, 24 October 1868, page 411 (available at Google books).
Jun-12-16  patzerkiller: A portrait and biography can be found here:

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