This Week on ChessBase: Hamppe-Meitner, Vienna 1872

by ChessBase
2/4/2009 – In his Wednesday night Playchess lecture Dennis Monokroussos show us a true classic from the days of yore. Black sacrifices a piece on move three (!!), then goes on to give up a queen, knight and bishop, all for the sake of the attack. And this game has stood the test of time, weathering expert scrutiny and computer analysis. Nine p.m. ET – be there to watch and wonder.

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Dennis Monokroussos writes:

It's a very old game, going back to 1872, but the remarkable contest between Carl Hamppe and Philipp Meitner has not lost its power to amaze chess fans. Almost immediately the game goes into full action mode as Meitner, with Black, sacrifices a piece on move three (!!). That's just for starters, too. Black throws more wood on the fire – a queen, a knight, and a bishop all offer their lives for the sake of the attack. White chips in as well, giving up a piece, but the main hero for White is the intrepid king. All alone, it ventures as far as c6, and yet somehow it does not die. Astonishing!

Even more surprising is just how well this game holds up, 137 years later. Analysts and their "assistants" have gone deeper, but almost every move has stood the test of time. Computer have therefore given this game a double benefit: a confirmation of its class, and, thanks to the wonderful variations that have been discovered in recent times, the opportunity to increase fans' enjoyment. You'll get to see some beautiful lines tonight, lines I hope will inspire you to create your own masterpieces in the 19th century mode.

So you're invited to join me tonight on the server. We begin at 9 p.m. ET (3 a.m. CET). The show is free for Playchess members; all you have to do is go to the broadcast room at the starting time, click the games tab and double-click on Hamppe-Meitner. See you there!

Dennis Monokroussos' Radio ChessBase lectures begin on Wednesdays at 9 p.m. EST, which translates to 02:00h GMT, 03:00 Paris/Berlin, 13:00h Sydney (on Thursday). Other time zones can be found at the bottom of this page. You can use Fritz or any Fritz-compatible program (Shredder, Junior, Tiger, Hiarcs) to follow the lectures, or download a free trial client.

You can find the exact times for different locations in the world at World Time and Date. Exact times for most larger cities are here. And you can watch older lectures by Dennis Monokroussos offline in the Chess Media System room of Playchess:

Enter the above archive room and click on "Games" to see the lectures. The lectures, which can go for an hour or more, will cost you between one and two ducats. That is the equivalent of 10-20 Euro cents (14-28 US cents).

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Dennis Monokroussos is 41, lives in South Bend, IN, where he teaches chess and occasionally works as an adjunct professor of philosophy at the University of Notre Dame and Indiana University-South Bend.

At one time he was one of the strongest juniors in the U.S. and has reached a peak rating of 2434 USCF, but several long breaks from tournament play have made him rusty. He is now resuming tournament chess in earnest, hoping to reach new heights.

Dennis has been working as a chess teacher for ten years now, giving lessons to adults and kids both in person and on the internet, worked for a number of years for New York’s Chess In The Schools program, where he was one of the coaches of the 1997-8 US K-8 championship team from the Bronx, and was very active in working with many of CITS’s most talented juniors.

When Dennis Monokroussos presents a game, there are usually two main areas of focus: the opening-to-middlegame transition and the key moments of the middlegame (or endgame, when applicable). With respect to the latter, he attempts to present some serious analysis culled from his best sources (both text and database), which he has checked with his own efforts and then double-checked with his chess software.

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