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Albin Countergambit vs. Budapest Gambit
Albin Countergambit vs. Budapest Gambit

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Volume 0003: Albin Counter-Gambit

Volume 0015: Budapest Gambit - James Plaskett

Volume 0055: Untamed Chigorin!

Volume 0163: Crushing Opening Traps in the Budapest

Volume 0168: Modern Albin Counter-Gambit:Black Part 1 – Andrew M

Volume 0169: Modern Albin Counter-Gambit:Black Part 2 – Andrew M

The Budapest Chess Club organized a chess tournament, to participate in the Budapest Millennial Exhibition intended to mark the 1000 years since the Magyar conquest of Hungary by the legendary King Árpád in 896, in October of 1896. Among the participants were established masters such as Siegbert Tarrasch, Mikhail Chigorin, and David Janowski, as well as young chess stars such as Harry Nelson Pillsbury and Carl Schlechter. Hungary was represented by Géza Maróczy, who was acting solely as tournament director until Semyon Alapin withdrew at the last minute and Maróczy stepped in as replacement to preserve the orginal organization, and new star Rudolf Charousek who had made his international debut the year before at Nuremberg. Maróczy was quick to secure a venue and funding- Emperor Franz Joseph donated the rent for the tournament venue: the monumental restaurant-hall of the fabulous Pest Vigadó, Budapest's premiere entertainment building, though the Budapest Chess Club had regularly met in the Pest Vigadó, in one of the smaller, and more affordable, back rooms. The Emperor also donated a 12 kilogram solid silver trophy, a statue of "Winged Victory." Baron Albert Rothschild provided 1000 Kronen and famed explorer Count Jen? Zichy provided 600 kronen towards the prize fund. Hungarian chess master Kornél Havasi acted as chief referee, and enforced a time control of two hours for the first 30 moves, and one hour for each 15 minutes after that.

Siegbert Tarrasch was awarded first brilliancy prize (beauty prize) for his Queen sac game against Ignatz Von Popiel in round six. Charousek tied Chigorin for first at the end of the tournament, and at first tournament director Maróczy insisted that there be no playoff--he argued that since Charousek had won his tournament game against Chigorin, the Hungarian master should be given clear first. Chigorin, however, insisted on a playoff mini-match, and Charousek was keen to participate in the showdown, effectively overruling the tournament director. Chigorin, a veteran match player, soundly defeated the young Charousek 3-1 in the playoff. After winning the playoff, Chigorin was given a choice: the silver "Winged Victory" trophy or 2,500 kronen. He took the money, and the trophy sat at the Budapest Chess Club until the advent of World War I, after which the trophy mysteriously was "lost." Charousek received 2000 kronen for second place. This result made Charousek an instant national hero in Austria Hungary, and he was invited by the nobility of Budpest and Vienna to lecture and to play simultaneous exhibitions. To this day, Budapest 1896 is the strongest chess tournament ever held in Hungary.

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