Site hosted by Build your free website today!

  Barry - Marshall;  Cambridge Springs, 1904.  

As part of my continuing efforts to annotate all the games from CS1904 ...   

I started (mostly) with the games of F.J. Marshall, so I will continue with that work here.  

 This is mostly a text-based game ... with just a few diagrams. You will definitely want a chess board.   

 Click  HERE  to see an explanation of some of the symbols that I use when annotating a chess game.  [replay]   

  John F. Barry (2450) - Frank J. Marshall (2658)  
  International Chess Tournament (Super-Master Event)  
  Cambridge Springs, PA/USA; (R3) /  28,04,1904.  

 [A.J. Goldsby I] 

  mar_cs1904-gm19_medal.gif, 02 KB

Round Three, Table No. # One  (- Steve Etzel's game, no. # 19.)   


As part of my quest to annotate all of Frank Marshall's games from the historic tournament at Cambridge Springs, 1904; here is the great American chess player's game from the third round. 

The first point I wish to make is about my procedure. Generally, the first thing I do is to download the game from the CB website, and then check it against all the available sources. When I did this in early October, 2005 ... it became apparent that - once again - CB had the wrong game score. (They have the game ending after Black's 26th move.) Practically every game that CB has (of the older events) contains an error of some type. (Just about all the games after the first round - especially for this particular chess tourney - have an incorrect date!) 

<< Impetuous play was responsible for several losses in the third round of the international chess masters' tournament; Barry, Fox and Napier all falling victims to the irrepressible desire to sacrifice material for imaginary positional advantages. Marshall, Mieses and Dr. Lasker showed their ability to accept Grecian gifts and emerged unscathed. >>  - The bulletin 
(Note the bulletins for this event are quite rare, mine are copies obtained directly from the "John G. White Collection" of the public library in Cleveland, Ohio / USA.) 

<< This is a very interesting game, featuring a sacrifice by White. 
      Marshall defends well and then creates a (mating) net around the White King. >> 
      (He goes on to comment to the effect that he was completely surprised by the level   
       of Marshall's excellent technique.)  - Chess Historian, Steve Etzel  (Wisconsin, USA)  

  *** *** *** *** *** ***     *** *** *** *** *** ***     *** *** *** *** *** ***     *** *** *** *** *** ***   

{Marshall's rating comes from the "Chess-Metric's" rating  list  for the month of  April, 1904

  Barry was not listed, his rating is an estimate. But I should point out that:  
  A.) Barry was considered to be one of the eight-best American masters ... 
        if he were not in this elite group, he would NOT have been invited to this tournament! 
  B.) Jeff Sonas ("Chess Metrics") gives Barry a 'post-event' rating of 2551.

 1.e4 e5;  2.Nf3 Nc6;  3.Bb5,  (undermines the e5-square)   
A standard Ruy Lopez, a favorite among masters for well over 100 years now.   

 3...f5!?;  (counter-attack)    
 The Schliemann Variation.  (Also called, "The Jaenisch System." {Gambit} in some opening books.) 

The database shows that it was first played in the contest: 
D. Harrwitz - J. Lowenthal; Match Game / London / 1853. 

However, it gained real popularity when many Soviet and Yugoslav players began analyzing and (also) playing this line in the 1940's and the early 1950's. 

     [ The main line is considered to be:   (>/=)  3...a6!?; ('!')   The Morphy Defense  

       4.Ba4 Nf65.0-0 Be76.Re1 b57.Bb3 d68.c3 0-09.h3,  (space/center)  "+/="   
       White maintains a slight edge, as d2-d4 cannot be prevented. (The first player will then    
        have the clearly superior control of the center, thanks to the Pawn duo on e4 and d4.)  

       A recent (GM) example would be: 
       Vishy Anand - Michael Adams;  / The (FIDE)  World Championships  (Tournament)   
       / San Luis, ARG; 2005.  {White won a sharp struggle. 1-0 in just thirty-two [32] moves.}  

  ***** ***** ***** *****    ***** ***** ***** ***** *****    ***** ***** ***** *****   

       I recently purchased the volume:  "The RUY LOPEZ, Main Line,"  by  GM Glenn Flear
       (pub. 2004)  ISBN: # 1-85744-351-9  No serious student of the game, who intends to play    
       this opening, should be without this book! ]   


 4.d4!?,  (Maybe - '!')   
The most natural move, White strikes at the center in an attempt to rip the game wide open. However, modern theory seems to indicate that 4.Nc3, would be a better try ... and would probably yield White an advantage.   

For the lines that cover the systems with  >/= 4.Nc3, fxe4;  see  MCO-14,  page # 51, all columns and notes.   
(This same section also covers the variations with 4.d4!? as well. And probably column # 27 would be the main line today.)  

After literally weeks of research, I would say one of the most crucial (recent) contests in this line would be the following encounter:  
GM Alexander Galkin
(2565)GM Alexei Bezgodov (2520); 
ICT / The Petrov Memorial (R7) / St. Petersburg, RUS; 1998.  (1/2, 50 moves.)  
{A very long game that eventually was drawn after fifty tense moves. See Informant # 72, game # 309.}   


     [ Today, one of the main lines is considered to be:    
        (>/=)   4.Nc3, ('!')  4...fxe45.Nxe4 Nf6;    
        This is what is usually played here, and is considered to be the most important variation for Black.   

             (Black can also play  5...d5!?;  in this position ... this play leads to really wild complications.   
              See MCO-14, page # 51 and column # 27 for more details on this complex line.)     

        6.Qe2!? d57.Nxf6+ gxf6 8.d4 Bg79.dxe5, "~"   {Diagram?}   
        with continuing complications. 
        (With very precise play, White will often emerge from the opening phase with an advantage.)    


        See the following two games ...    

        GM N. de Firmian and MCO gives:  GM Z. Almasi - GM A. Khalifman;   
        ICT / CORUS Masters / Wijk ann Zee, NED; 1995.   

        The highest-rated, decisive game that I could find in the db was the following encounter:    
        GM J. Timman - GM V. Korchnoi  
        / (FIDE) Candidates Match (qf2) / Brussels, BEL; 1991.  (1-0, 38 moves.)    

               *** *** *** *** ***   *** *** *** *** ***   *** *** *** *** ***   

        [ See MCO-14, page # 51; column # 25 and all applicable notes for this column. (# e.). ]  


        White can also play:    
         (</=)  4.d3!? fxe45.dxe4 Nf6 6.0-0!,   "+/="  
         when White will usually emerge from the opening with a solid edge.   

         [ See MCO-14, page # 51; column # 30, and all notes. ]  ]   


 4...fxe4;  (Forced?)    
A perfectly natural move.   

     [ Not to be recommended is:  
       </=  4...Nf6?!5.exf5 e46.Ne5 Qe77.Bxc6 dxc68.g4, "+/="  (Maybe even '+/')   
       when White has won a Pawn. ]   


 5.Nxe5!?,  (hmmm)    
Seemingly the most natural or best move here, ... 
but most books today {instead} recommend that White play  >/= Bxc6  in this position. 
(Which, in my opinion, is a solider/safer play, but does not appear to be quite as dynamic as taking on e5.)   

     [ Instead the book gives:   
       (>/=)  5.Bxc6, ('!')  5...dxc66.Nxe5 Bf5 7.0-0 Bd68.Qh5+ g6   
       9.Qe2 Qh410.Nc3 Nf6 11.f3 Bxe5;  {Diagram?}    
       The end of the column.   

       12.dxe5 exf313.Rxf3 Qd4+ 14.Kh1!? Ne4;  "~"  (Maybe "+/=")    
       White might still have a slight (theoretical) edge, but the author of MCO    
        realistically evaluates this position as being equal.   

       GM J. Polgar - GM V. Ivanchuk;  / ICT / Masters (Round #09)    
        / Dortmund, GER; 1997.  (1/2, 37 moves.)  
       {A tough fight, eventually it was drawn after 37 interesting moves.}   

        [ See MCO-14, page # 51; column # 29, and note # (t.). ]    

        NOTE:  Unless White can come up with a significant improvement in the actual game here ...    
        this line is White's best bet, and I now understand why White must avoid the continuation that    
        was played in this game. [All established opening theory here.] {A.J.G.} 
        (Wednesday; November 09, 2005.) ]   


Believe it or not, from here until White's eleventh move, this is all a book line ... 
and one that is still played at the master level ... even today.   
 5...Nxe5;  6.dxe5 c6!;  7.Nc3,  {See the diagram given, just below.}  
This seems like a wild sacrifice ... 
but if White tamely retreats his Bishop on b5, then simply 7...Qa5+; wins White's e-pawn.  
(When the first player does not have adequate compensation for the button.)    



mar_barry-vs-m_cs1904_pos01.gif, 10 KB

  r1bqkbnr/pp1p2pp/2p5/1B2P3/4p3/2N5/PPP2PPP/R1BQK2R b  


Only seven moves have been played, but obviously the position has already reached a crucial point - for both players here.  

Marshall indicates - in the book of the tournament - that he had played this line against Marco, (At Monte Carlo, 1902.); and lost after 7.0-0. White's seventh move is a new one, and an attempt by Barry to strengthen the White offensive with active piece play. 

     [ 7.Be2!? Qa5+8.c3 Qxe5;  "=/+"  ("/+") ]   


Marshall proceeds in a vigorous and daring manner. (As part of my studies for this game, I did a very deep study of this whole opening system ... the whole process took OVER a month!! I am not even sure if anyone had ever found the correct lines for Black ... at least not before this game was played. (I have done dozens of database searches in this line, the Barry-Marshall game is often the first game listed in the database.) So F.J. Marshall's play - in this particular contest - can definitely be seen as both innovative and groundbreaking.)   
 7...cxb5!;  8.Nxe4 d5!;    
"It is absolutely necessary to obtain freedom for Black's pieces, and this sacrifice of a Pawn is a good investment." 
 - GM Frank.J. Marshall in the official book of the tournament.   

  9.exd6 Nf6!;  10.Bg5 Qa5+!;  11.Bd2?!,  hmmmm   
At first glance, this move seems to be both normal and natural. {See the diagram, just below.}    



mar_barry-vs-m_cs1904_pos02.gif, 10 KB

  r1b1kb1r/pp4pp/3P1n2/qp6/4N3/8/PPPB1PPP/R2QK2R b  


However, this move (today) should be considered a mistake, and as Marshall clearly shows ... soon leaves White with a completely untenable game. (Also, when you are on the attack and have sacrificed material, it is best to avoid exchanges - just on general principle.) 

     [ Much better was:  
       >/=  11.Nc3 b412.Bxf6 gxf613.Nd5 b3+14.c3 Be615.Nc7+ Kd7;  "~"  (too crazy)   
       reaching positions that are very difficult to properly assess. ("=/+")  (However, I should point    
       out that Black has won the majority of the master-level games from this important position.)   

       Ryszard Wolny (2445) - Ralph Mallee (2505);   
       Bannet Memorial Tournament / Corres-8691, 1986.  (0-1, 30 moves) ]   


 11...b4!;  ('!!')  (Why?)   {See the diagram given, just below.}   
A nice move ... and although Marshall did not know it, he has found an improvement to a line that John Barry had possibly analyzed with William E. Napier.   



mar_barry-vs-m_cs1904_pos03.gif, 10 KB

  r1b1kb1r/pp4pp/3P1n2/q7/1p2N3/8/PPPB1PPP/R2QK2R w  


Now Black basically comes out on top ... no matter what continuation that White chooses from this position. 

The really impressive part about this play by Marshall is that the threat of ...Qe5; practically decides the fight in his favor. And - judging from the reactions of the players at the local chess club when I showed them this game - the move is far from being an obvious play.  

"Barry had previously given this line a thorough examination, but failed to take the full strength of this move into account."  
 - GM Frank J. Marshall, in the official book of the tournament.  

     [ But definitely not:  </=  11...Qd8!?;  & then  12.Bg5 is just repeating the position.   
       {Is this a transparent offer of a draw in this position?} ]   


Probably best/forced, and it is also the first move choice of Fritz here.   

     [ </= 12.Nxf6+?! gxf613.Qe2+ Kf7!14.a3 Bxd6;  "-/+" ]    


This is basically winning for Black, but Marshall might have also played Fritz's move of 12...Kf7!? here as well.   

 13.Nxf6+,  {Box?}   
Now White has no choice.   

     [ </=  13.f3? a5!;  "/+"  (Maybe "-/+") ]   


 13...gxf6;  14.Qxe5+ fxe5;  15.Bxb4 Rg8!;  "/+"    {See the diagram given, just below.}  
While 15...Be6 is the first choice of Fritz here, I rather prefer Black's active Rook move here.   



mar_barry-vs-m_cs1904_pos04.gif, 09 KB

  r1b1kbr1/pp5p/3P4/4p3/1B6/8/PPP2PPP/R3K2R w  


White does not stand badly, at least not materially speaking. (3P - Bishop) White is also slightly ahead in his development. Yet - as this contest clearly demonstrates - White cannot avert the loss from here, a simple endgame (where the Pawns might be a factor) is just too far away. 

 16.Rd1?!,  (Probably - '?')    
White centralizes his Queen's Rook.   

In any case - the computer's {move} suggestion of 0-0-0, (giving back one button, but keeping active piece play for White); should be considered superior to this move.   

     [ Or if  16.g3?,  then  16...Bg4 "-/+" ]   


Not even the computer can find any serious improvement over the next series of moves ... (until Black's eighteenth move); which seem to be best play ... for both sides from here.   
This move gains a tempo by hitting the White Bishop - on b4 - and then prevents White from castling (with a Rook check on e4) on the very next move.  

     [ Fritz - at first, anyway - likes the simple move of:  16...Be6; "-/+"   which also should win for Black. ]   


This looks forced. 

Marshall points out that: ... "many of the of the bystanders thought that White could win with P-Q7ch, but this is not so."   
 - GM Frank J. Marshall, in the official book of the tournament. 

     [ After the very simple moves:  17.d7+, Bxd7!18.Bxf8, Re4+!19.Kf1, Bb5+20.Kg1, Kxf8;  "-/+"  
        Black has rescued his piece, and has a very easily won game. ]   


Marshall says:  "Henceforth it is plain (easy) sailing for Black."  

 17...Re4+;  18.Kf1 Bd7;  ('!?')    
A simple and natural move, Marshall blockades the dangerous WQP here. 
(The Black Bishop is not just playing defense in this position, it often appears on the a6-f1 diagonal ... with devastating effect.)  

     [ The continuation of: 
       18...Be6!?; ('!')  19.b3 Rd420.Ke2 0-0-021.Rxd4 exd422.Bc5 b623.Bxd4 Bxd6; "/+"   
        leaves Black with a fairly simple win in the endgame phase. 
        [Fritz prefers ...Be6; however I do not see the difference between the two lines as being significant.] ]   


 19.f3,  (hmmm)    
White is trying (hard) to create play and extricate himself from his various difficulties here. But there is no real escape for Barry from this position.   

     [ Or  19.b3!? Rc820.c4 b5;  "/+"  with what is basically a winning position for Black. ]   


 19...Bb5+;  20.Kf2 Re2+;  21.Kg3 Bh6!;    
Forget about winning a Pawn here,  (21...RxP/c2);  the great F.J. Marshall is out to bag bigger game.  

 22.c3 0-0-0!;   {See the diagram given, just below.}   
Material is meaningless in this position ... all of Black's pieces work together with an amazing degree of cooperation.  
(Before trying to mate or finish White off, Marshall activates his QR.)   



mar_barry-vs-m_cs1904_pos05.gif, 09 KB

  2kr4/pp5p/3P3b/1b2p3/8/B1P2PK1/PP2r1PP/3R3R w  


Most of my students want to start the attack with 22...Bf4+; but then usually discover that Black can't finish the job until they 
can utilize all of their pieces. 

 23.Kh3 Bd7+;   
This is more than sufficient for the task at hand.  

     [ Also winning was:  "=" 23...Rg8; ('!')  ("-/+") - Fritz 8.0 ]  


 24.g4[],  {Box!}   
This was forced for White.   

     [ But not:  </=  24.Kh4?? Rxg2;  "-/+"   and Black will administer a speedy checkmate from here. ]   


The rest is not hard to understand, Marshall continues to tighten the noose around Barry's poor King.   

 24...Rf8;  25.Rdf1 Bf4;  26.Re1 Rf2;  27.Ref1,   
White is in virtual zugzwang here. (Its almost impossible to come up with constructive moves here for White - White could not allow ...RXP/f3+; dropping two Pawns - and it would also probably walk into a mating net as well.)   

     [ </= 27.Rhf1?? Rxh2#. ]    


 27...Rc2;  ('!')   "-/+"   (White Resigns.)   
Now J.F. Barry sees no adequate defense to Marshall's various threats, (I.e., the idea of ...R/f8-f6-h6 mate.); so he decides to throw in the towel. 

A wonderful game by Marshall, his conduct of the opening was at least fifty years ahead of his time. 



I used dozens of sources in my attempt to annotate this game. However, by far the most important were the following:   

  1.   A copy of the original book of the tournament that was published by  "Black Knight"  press in New York   
      in the {late} year of 1935. 

  2.   A copy of the original bulletins for this event, that were originally obtained from the Cleveland Public Library.    

  3.   Dozens of opening resources and chess books, most notably  "Modern Chess Openings,"  the 14th Edition. 
       (I also used ECO, NIC, Informants, and many other books and publications too numerous to name here.) 

  4.   The extensive (on-line) games database from the good folks at ChessBase. (   

  5.   Various analysis engines, but by far the most reliable (for me) has been the powerful program, Fritz 8.0.  



  Copyright (c) A.J. Goldsby, 2005. All rights reserved.   


  0 - 1   

I began going over this game - mostly without the assistance of the computer - shortly after I finished the last game of Marshall's that I had worked on previously. (Vs. Tchigorin, from the first round of this tournament.)   

Right away, I noticed that CB had the date wrong ... and later I noticed that the last two move pairs (2 ply) were omitted by ChessBase ... and most other electronic databases as well. It took several weeks of work to create the analysis for this game. 

As Steve Etzel can attest to, the original version contained a massive note after move four, which basically {now} includes  every column and note  that  MCO  and  ECO  gives on this opening system.  It also included many of the more common traps for this opening line - or at least all of the ones that I could find in my various books on chess traps. 

I did not want to even attempt to include such an extremely lengthy note in this web page - several good reasons would be: 

  1. It was simply too long, extremely complicated and cumbersome

  2. Formatting such a note would be a total nightmare. 

  3. I don't really believe that the average chess enthusiast is interested in such lengthy notes anyway. (Nor do I believe that the average visitor to my web pages would ever play through such a note ... so why go to all that effort for nothing?)  

  4. That part of the work was done as much as for my benefit as anything else. (I also have shared this work with a small circle of a few select friends. The opening is so complicated, I doubt the average player would want nor understand this analysis, anyway.)  

A special deep, sincere thanks - are due to  Steven Etzel  of Wisconsin. (His website.)  Because of his generosity, I have a clear and legible copy of the original tournament book, AND a copy of the very rare bulletins for this event. He also was kind enough to play through this game ... and share with me the questions that he had about this contest. (So if this page is instructive, informative and educational, it is by design!)  {Several other friends and students were kind enough to play through this game ... and offer their questions and ideas as well.}   


I used the excellent program,  ChessBase 9.0  to prepare the notes and game analysis. I used the program,  Chess Captor 2.25  to prepare the diagrams. I used  "FrontPage"  to prepare and polish the HTML for my website.  

  This (web) page  (just the basic HTML shell)  was created in  September,  2004.   
  (Final format and posting completed on:  Thursday; November 24th, 2005.)  
  This page was last updated on 11/30/14   


 Click  HERE  to go to, (or return to); my  Home Page  for this site. 

Click  HERE  to go to, (or return to); my  End-Game School  on this site.


  Click  HERE  to return to my page on  Frank J. Marshall.  

Click  HERE  to go to ... or return to ... the Electronic Archive & Museum. (For Marshall.) 

Click  HERE  to go to, (or return to); my page on  Paul Morphy.


Click  HERE  to go to, (or return to); 
my Geo-Cities page on the Best Chess Players who ever lived.

Click  HERE  to go to, (or return to); my page
on the Best Chess games of all time. 

(Or click the 'Back" button on your web browser.)


  Buy a  BOOK  from "Amazon-dot-com" and help me in the process!!!  

    Copyright ()  A.J. Goldsby,  2014.  All rights reserved.     

   [Copyright (c) A.J. Goldsby, 1985-2013.  All rights reserved.]  

   "A counter"   

  (This game was previewed by three people.)