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Paul Morphy

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Number of games in database: 463
Years covered: 1848 to 1869

Overall record: +182 -25 =17 (85.0%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 239 exhibition games, blitz/rapid, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Evans Gambit (44) 
    C51 C52
 King's Gambit Accepted (25) 
    C37 C39 C38 C35 C36
 Sicilian (14) 
    B44 B40 B21 B20
 Philidor's Defense (13) 
 King's Gambit Declined (13) 
    C30 C31
 French Defense (9) 
    C01 C00
With the Black pieces:
 King's Gambit Accepted (21) 
    C33 C39 C38
 Ruy Lopez (15) 
    C77 C65 C64 C78 C84
 Evans Gambit (15) 
    C51 C52
 Giuoco Piano (10) 
    C53 C50 C54
 Philidor's Defense (7) 
 Dutch Defense (4) 
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Morphy vs Duke Karl / Count Isouard, 1858 1-0
   Paulsen vs Morphy, 1857 0-1
   Bird vs Morphy, 1858 0-1
   Morphy vs Le Carpentier, 1849 1-0
   Morphy vs Schrufer, 1859 1-0
   J Schulten vs Morphy, 1857 0-1
   Morphy vs A Morphy, 1850 1-0
   Morphy vs Anderssen, 1858 1-0
   N Marache vs Morphy, 1857 0-1
   Morphy vs Anderssen, 1858 1-0

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   1st American Chess Congress (1857)
   Morphy - Loewenthal (1858)
   Morphy - Mongredien (1859)
   Anderssen - Morphy (1858)
   Morphy - Harrwitz (1858)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Paul Morphy -The Great Chess Genius by Timothy Glenn Forney
   Paul Morphy Conquered the World Says Fredthebear by fredthebear
   Paul Morphy Conquered the World Says Fredthebear by demirchess
   Morphy Favorites by chocobonbon
   Paul Morphy Conquered the World by rbaglini
   Paul Morphy Conquered the World by Atsa
   If chess was a religion, Morphy would be God. by Chopin
   paul morphy best games by brager
   Pure Morphy by saveyougod
   PAUL MORPHY by vaskolon
   Obds (Part 1) by Penguincw
   Odds games #2 by WhiteRook48
   A First Book of Morphy by Incremental
   A First Book of Morphy by StoppedClock

   La Bourdonnais vs McDonnell, 1834
   La Bourdonnais vs McDonnell, 1834
   McDonnell vs La Bourdonnais, 1834
   La Bourdonnais vs McDonnell, 1834
   La Bourdonnais vs McDonnell, 1834

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Paul Morphy
Search Google for Paul Morphy

(born Jun-22-1837, died Jul-10-1884, 47 years old) United States of America

[what is this?]

Paul Charles Morphy was born in New Orleans. He was the son of a successful lawyer and judge Alonzo Morphy. His uncle, Ernest Morphy, claims that no one formally taught Morphy how to play chess, but rather that he learned the rules by observing games between himself and Alonzo. When Morphy was only 12 years old, Johann Jacob Loewenthal visited New Orleans and at the behest of his father, agreed to play a casual match with the prodigy. Young Paul won 2½ to ½.

In 1857 Morphy won the First American Chess Congress with a dominating performance . This success was followed by a European trip where he met and triumphed over most of the prominent masters of the period, namely Adolf Anderssen whom he defeated +7 -2 =2 (see Anderssen - Morphy (1858)), Loewenthal in Morphy - Loewenthal (1858) and Daniel Harrwitz in Morphy - Harrwitz (1858). Upon returning to America, he announced his retirement from chess.

Although the official title of World Champion did not exist in his time, Morphy was and is widely regarded as the strongest player of his day. Even today his games are studied for their principles of open lines and quick development, and his influence on the modern game is undeniable. Mikhail Botvinnik wrote of his influence: "His mastery of open positions was so vast that little new has been learned about such positions after him."

User: jessicafischerqueen 's YouTube documentary of Paul Morphy:

Lucas Anderson's YouTube video 'The Life and Chess of Paul Morphy':

Unpublished manuscript of the "The First and Last Days of Paul Morphy", written by his friend and neighbor Constant Beauvais:

Notes: Paul also played team chess with Morphy / Barnes and Morphy / Mongredien, and edited a chess column in the New York Ledger.

Wikipedia article: Paul Morphy

Last updated: 2019-02-18 16:57:41

 page 1 of 19; games 1-25 of 463  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Morphy vs NN 1-0191848New OrleansC20 King's Pawn Game
2. Morphy vs A Morphy 1-0311848New OrleansC23 Bishop's Opening
3. Morphy vs A Morphy 1-0181848New OrleansC33 King's Gambit Accepted
4. Morphy vs J McConnell 1-0111849New Orleans cgC35 King's Gambit Accepted, Cunningham
5. Morphy vs A Morphy 1-0461849New OrleansC51 Evans Gambit
6. Morphy vs J McConnell 1-0291849New OrleansC39 King's Gambit Accepted
7. Morphy vs NN 1-0201849New Orleans cgC39 King's Gambit Accepted
8. Morphy vs Le Carpentier 1-0131849New Orleans000 Chess variants
9. J McConnell vs Morphy 0-1231849New OrleansC38 King's Gambit Accepted
10. Morphy vs E Morphy 1-0201849New OrleansC53 Giuoco Piano
11. Morphy vs E Rousseau 1-0171849New OrleansC39 King's Gambit Accepted
12. Morphy vs J McConnell 1-0231849New OrleansC40 King's Knight Opening
13. Morphy vs A Morphy 1-0151849New Orleans mC51 Evans Gambit
14. Morphy vs A Morphy 1-0211849New OrleansC51 Evans Gambit
15. Morphy vs E Rousseau 1-0231849New OrleansC50 Giuoco Piano
16. NN vs Morphy 0-1241850New OrleansC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
17. Morphy vs A Morphy 1-0181850New Orleans ?000 Chess variants
18. J McConnell vs Morphy 0-1141850New OrleansC02 French, Advance
19. Morphy vs NN 1-0181850?000 Chess variants
20. J McConnell vs Morphy 0-1251850New OrleansC52 Evans Gambit
21. Morphy vs NN 1-0141850casualC44 King's Pawn Game
22. Morphy vs Loewenthal 1-0491850Casual GameB21 Sicilian, 2.f4 and 2.d4
23. Morphy vs Loewenthal 1-0551850Casual GameC42 Petrov Defense
24. Maurian vs Morphy 0-1291854New Orleans000 Chess variants
25. Morphy vs Maurian 0-1271854New Orleans000 Chess variants
 page 1 of 19; games 1-25 of 463  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Morphy wins | Morphy loses  

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 273 OF 276 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Aug-16-17  KnightVBishop: Beethoven was also described as having a "darkish, moorish color" as well, which many people have speculated he had african ancestry
Aug-16-17  Boomie: <KnightVBishop> We try to keep on topic, especially in hallowed halls such as Morphy's forum. Our personal forums and the Rogoff page are exceptions.

I will say in passing that the current scientific notion about skin color is that it's a balancing act between Vitamin D and skin cancer. In cloudy Northern climes, lighter skin color allows more Vitamin D to be made. In sunny climes, that isn't an issue, so skin color darkens to reduce the chance of cancer. These are tiny effects but over thousands of years, small effects create enormous changes. Many such anatomical changes are driven by the environment. Of course, one would have to believe in evolution to understand that the notion of race is obsolete.

Aug-17-17  KnightVBishop: >Boomie

I understand Boomie, I am just interested though about the supposed african ancestry theory of Morphy, I have heard it mentioned before in the past, but I never took it completely serious

Hopefully other people comment their opinions on it?

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: I, for one, could not care less about Morphy's race, but only about his chess and personality; and there are plenty of positive things to be said of both, by all accounts.
Aug-17-17  KnightVBishop: I mean it is kind of somewhat important though what the truth of his race is
Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: Mr.Morphy would only lift his eyes from the game when victory was imminent. He would stare curiously at his opponent. His opponent would sense this and humbly raise his gaze to meet Paul's. In that moment he knew resistance was futile.
Nov-15-17  DarthStapler: I was bored so I wrote this for fun. I might as well post it here:






MORPHY: I'm the genesis of modern chess, I brought forth a meta-Morphy-sis, it took me less than two years to prove I was the world's best! Everything you ever did, I did it first and did it faster! You made GM at 15 but I'm the OG-Master!

You came on the scene as a teen but took over 10 years to win the title, claimed the Russians were arranging their games like some recital! My ascent to the top went off without a hitch, but then again my cheering section wasn't chanting "Go Fish!"

FISCHER: You must be kidding me, old man, you think you have a better resume? All the patzers that you beat barely knew how to play! Steinitz would have whooped your ass, because he could play positionally, you're all flash and no substance, and you were never champ officially!

Forget undermining pawn chains, I broke through the Iron Curtain, and played the Game of the Century when I was only thirteen! You should have stuck to law school, you woodpushing fool, instead of thinking it would be cool to try and challenge my rule!

MORPHY: I left chess to be a lawyer, yes you did get that right - what did you do after you quit, other than become a raging anti-Semite? You're half-Jewish yourself, have you never seen your family tree? But you'll never be half as great a chess player as me!

Game of the Century? Sure, I'll give you that one - because in the century before I was second to none! The fat lady already sang when I played my Opera Game, compared to that your so-called 'brilliances' are the epitome of lame! You ducked a match with Karpov like declining the King's Gambit (which still hasn't been busted despite your best efforts to do it!) My reputation never suffered any serious besmirching, but what happened to your sanity? I hear that they're still searching!

FISCHER: You want to talk about dignity in later life, bub? That's funny coming from a guy who died in his bathtub! My name's a household word, who's even heard of you except for a few chess nerds? You think your little Opera Game was brilliant? How absurd! I've seen better combinations by the likes of Henry Bird!

Like you did to your paul Maurian, I'd beat you with knight odds, but that would hardly even be a feat worthy of applause! I'm the best player the US, no, the world has ever seen! Compared to me you're nothing but an antique has-been!





Nov-29-17  Moszkowski012273: I think I know who you are <Darth>....
Premium Chessgames Member
  James Demery: Darth: I like it! I like them both. I cant decide.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Quote of the Day

<"Perhaps the most accurate player who ever lived, he would beat anybody today in a set-match.">

-- Fischer (on Morphy)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Edwin Meijer: <DarthStapler>

That is a great rap man!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Joshka: Think we'll ever see a movie on Paul Morphy? He had a very short professional chess career which is perfect for the silver screen considering they only like to take the top 3-4 years of a players great years. Southern gentleman, during the Civil War, conquered Europe returned home a hero, then just quit. Maybe in the vein of "A Beautiful Mind"
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: how about if Sheldon from "The Big Bang Theory" plays Morphy?
Mar-16-18  JPi: Paul Morphy is knew to have been against slavery but living in a rich family of New-Orleans, I'm afraid Morphy family have slaves domestics at home. Do someone knows about this matter?
Mar-23-18  zanzibar: Morphy - Cowboy Bebop style:


Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: I was having a look at Morphy's games through the Repertoire Explorer tool, and noticed that all of the 178 games where Morphy had the White pieces, he started the game with 1. e4.

Are there any players who have more games in the database for White where all games are started with the same move.?

May-31-18  JimNorCal: Thanks for the Cowboy Bebop link, zanzibar!
Jun-22-18  benjaminpugh: Happy birthday!
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: <Edwin Meijer: <DarthStapler>

That is a great rap man!>


<WHO WON?> I think Fischer won, but it was close.


YOU DECIDE!> Tal v. Fischer, please!

Aug-09-18  morfishine: <ughaibu: Morfishine: More to the point, has my offer made it clear that Steinitz wouldn't be expected to take odds from Morphy and any refusal to do so cannot be assumed to indicate fear. After all, if he was willing to play without getting odds, why on earth would he be scared to play with odds?

Is there any recorded incident that suggests that Steinitz was ever scared of any chess opponent?> Of course, Steinitz would never haven taken odds from Morphy. He was too brilliant for that! And he never feared anybody, thats why he played so long! Steinitz was unbeaten in match play for 32 years: 1862-1894


Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: < JPi: Paul Morphy is knew to have been against slavery but living in a rich family of New-Orleans, I'm afraid Morphy family have slaves domestics at home. Do someone knows about this matter?>

Knew by whom? And why are you afraid?

Aug-09-18  ughaibu: Morfishine: sure.
Aug-10-18  Atking: <JPi> is French and on Wikipedia (French page) it is written about Paul Morphy that he was anti-slavery. Wikipedia is certainly not an absolute reference but still consistent. For the second point, you must wait for his answer yet I understand the contraction between "having slaves as servants" and being against this practice.
Aug-10-18  Boomie: <Atking: <JPi> is French and on Wikipedia (French page) it is written about Paul Morphy that he was anti-slavery.>

Everything which has been confirmed about Morphy can be found here:

As I recall, Morphy was against secession. But I haven't seen anything concerning his views on slavery.

New Orleans was unique in its acceptance of different races and languages. There were French, Spanish, Portugese, English, Acadians (Cajuns), Creoles, vaious Native Americans and whoever else moved there. Morphy's mother was French Creole and his father was Spanish, Portugese, and Irish. New Orleans had a complex relationship to race and ancestry.

Aug-11-18  Atking: Wonderful site! Thanks <Boomie>
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