Saturday, August 17, 2013

Another Excellent Polish Chess History Book

Credit: Penelopa, Warsaw.
Poland had developed quite a collection of excellent chess historians, which do serious research and bring to our knowledge a lot new information about unknown periods in chess history (see C. N. 8204), or of obscure players who should be better known, and much more besides. 

Tomasz Lissowski, Jerzy Konikowski, and Jerzy Moras now offer us a new book -- Mistrz Przepiorka ('Master Przepiorka', 2013, Warsaw: Penelopa) -- a biography, article, game, and problem collection of David Przepiorka

The book is divided into four parts: a biography, which is very detailed, and in particular, investigates his early life, family history, education, and murder by the Nazis, as well as the better-known periods of his life. It includes many rare photographs -- including, inter alia, copies of his school record, and a color plate of his mother's gravestone. The second part is a collection of articles from numerous sources, mostly contemporary, by or about him. The third is a selection of 53 deeply-analyzed games. The last part is a collection of what he was most famous for: 160 problems and studies. Naturally, the original sources for all historical material used are given in detail. No unsourced 'Przepiorka had once...' stories here! 

Here is one early mate in 2 by him -- the 2nd he ever published -- from the book (p. 16, the source given being the Kurier Warszawski, 30.4.1895). The analysis is from the book.

Mate in 2.
1. Qb1!

'Tempo.' -- Lissowski et al

I.e., Black now has to move, and he is -- to use the players', not the problemists', term -- in "zugzwang". That is, any move which ignores White's last move allows mate:  

1. ... a4 2. Nb4#
1. ... c3 2. Qd3#
1. ... c5 2. Qb7#

1. ... Nxe6 2. Qf5#
1. ... Nf5+ 2.Qxf5#
1. ... Nh5 2. Qf5#
1. ... Ne8 2. Qf5#

1. ... Rd1 2. Nc3#
1. ... Re1 2. Nc3#
1. ... Rf1 2. Nc3#
1. ... Rg1 2. Nc3#
1. ... Rh1 2. Nc3#

1. ... Rc2 Qh1#
1. ... Rc3 Nxc3#

So Black must try: 

1. ... Rxb1 

Which is answered by 

2. Nc3#

P. S.

I apologize for the dropping of the accents from the Polish names in this post -- it is impossible to me to add them with the fonts available on my blog editor. At least, I don't know how to do it...


  1. Hi,

    my name ist Konikowski, not Knikowksi.


    Jerzy Konikowski
    Dortmund (Germany)

    1. Finally fixing the "labels" tab as well. Sorry about the delay, I was replying from a mobile device.