february 7 2023

Some technical difficulties for the Master with his screen sharing, before giving his knowledge, just slightly delayed the start of the lesson.

For this session, a very nice Knight ending followed by 2 games between the same players a few years apart.

Good reading to all.

P.S.: next session on february 4

Master's words

Pie ix

Toynbee 1"Universal suffrage would rather deserve the name of universal madness and, when secret societies take it over, that of universal lie" (Pie IX, 5-5-1874).

« Western civilisation aims at nothing less than the incorporation of all mankind into one great society, and the control of everything on land, sea and air that mankind can exploit with modern Western technology. What the West is doing to Islam, it is doing at the same time to the other surviving civilisations, Orthodox Christians, Indians, Far East..." (A. J. Toynbee, 1947).

"Have you ever done something crazy for love of a woman? -- Yes, I almost married one" (Marlène and Swan, "Les petits meurtres d'Agatha Christie")

Homo consumans lives "like a luxury pig in a technological barn" (Cl. Polin).

"We will never tire of offending the fools" (G. Bernanos).

When we see what humans are becoming today, we think irresistibly of the famous phrase: "God, in creating man, did not have enough hair in reserve to make a monkey".

"Gentlemen, I await your proposals. Silence!" (X. Tartacover, in a game "under consultation")).

A new illustration of the exciting theme of the Knight fighting heroically against three linked pawns, with an allusion to the improvement of an Averbakh analysis.   

The often developed principle of attacking pawns from the rear (even when they are defended, because it paralyses their defender, in this case the King) is verified, with new finesses.

A geometrical observation: the ZZ noted on the 62nd white move is not one, a column further left, and White runs away, see Prokes-Berger after the 62nd black move (here! the same move number, coincidence) studied here  http://lecoursdumaitre.e-monsite.com/en/pages/lessons/cat-2016/june-7-2016.html 

Rest with a Georgian amusement, quite simple knowing the prestigious author. Reminiscent of Arestov's study, but simpler, here http://lecoursdumaitre.e-monsite.com/en/pages/lessons/cat-2014/february-11-2014.html  Then a Romanian rescue that looks like a miracle. Incidentally, the good move in the 1...Bf1 variation becomes bad in the main line, and vice versa. Finally a tactical pirouette ending in a model mate.

As exercises, a sleight of hand, while we will end up with one less figure. Then a delicious impromptu with Rook and Knight against Rook. Then a rescue reminiscent of a find by my famous near namesake. Finally a mid-game execution.


Courchevel 1Tribute to Jean-Luc Seret, four-time French champion and nevertheless (!) problemist. Two games where yours truly suffers, whether he loses or wins. Each one is characterised by a move on the "a" file! But a2-a3! is a revenge on a4-a5?! and a5-a6?!. Of course, the jealous monster offers us a nugget with the same "a2-a3"!

In the second, a brilliant double move (kindly suggested by the monster) refuted the feared attack by White's player who was unable to foresee it, although considered as a "good defender".

Our French champion had won a first prize in 1975 with a mate in 25 moves. This time, that is to say 40 years later, he was satisfied with 24, but with locusts, a very charming animal! A long course in the Rehm or Wenda style.

Popandopoulo 2

Princess and empress, then a walk with señora and faro in honour of Saint Veronica! See also the 12 & 13 here http://lecoursdumaitre.e-monsite.com/en/pages/lessons/fairy-lessons/page-4.html   Bruch

Training: 2#'s are quite tough this month, with many tries (2nd, 5th, 7th, 10th and 11th) and multiple variations (4th, 8th and 9th). A blooming of mates in a 50 year old 3#. An echo-chameleon in a 5# helpmate that JLS really enjoyed at the 2002 Saint-Affrique tournament.

Prokop 2One of the most difficult selfmates I have ever solved in my life. Fortunately I "forgot" to remove the solution. From the same author as the delightful study that opens this course, but of a completely different kind :   http://lecoursdumaitre.e-monsite.com/en/pages/lessons/cat-2020/april-28-2020.html 

We complete the tribute to Havel's miniatures started in the last course, since the excellent article by J.-M. Loustau.

Last minute: a super-endgame played at the Wijk tournament, which exceeds the abilities of the players but also... of all of us, even with the big advantage of time and... drink!

Have a good time. Que Deus vos proteja.

Master's diagrams

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