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Friday, August 13, 2010

Are you getting too serious about your chess puzzles?

Hello Everyone,

Are you getting too serious about your chess puzzles? It's time for a break then. Mix some innovative ideas, some mirth and check out these puzzles. They are part of The Huffington Post's chess column by GM Lubomir Kavalek. You can read the full column here with the puzzle answers. If you want to first read the previous column without the answers then go here.

Kavalek writes, in 1853, a French aristocrat, Barthelemy de Basterot (1800-1887), published in Paris Traite elementaire du jeu des echecs (Elementary Treatise on the Rules of Chess), which included chapters on chess history and literature. Basterot was a strong player, but treated the essential rules rather loosely. For example, on pawn promotion he wrote that any pawn reaching the eighth (or last) rank can be changed to any piece a player chooses. The player, he said, was only required to announce what piece it was.

No wonder he became the target of one of the most gifted chess composers, Leonid Kubbel, who created two problems based on Basterot's rules. Both two-movers are playful jokes, and the clue lies in what Basterot's definition did not forbid.

Here is the first one:

White to play and mate in two!

Enjoy the nice answer!

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