Chess Tactics: Spielmann—Flamberg, 1914

This is one of my favorite examples of using chess tactics in an attack on an uncastled king. When facing an aggressive opening like white plays here, develop your pieces and don’t get greedy!

A True Romantic

Rudolf Spielmann knew all about attacking an uncastled king
Rudolf Spielmann was one of the world’s best players from the 1910s through the 1930s.

Playing white is renowned attacker Rudolf Spielmann (1883-1942). Even in his own time he was a throwback, preferring romantic, swashbuckling chess from the 19th century. Still, he performed well in tournaments and had respectable records against most of his contemporaries, including a lifetime 50% score against Capablanca (two wins, two losses, eight draws).

Spielmann wrote one of the early books on combinations and attacking chess, The Art of Sacrifice in Chess, which I highly recommend. It’s not just a textbook; the games selected are a pleasure to go through!



Classic Attack on the Uncastled King

Things to Remember

One player can reach the middlegame while the other is stuck in the opening! To avoid this fate, think carefully before accepting a “free” pawn, especially with your king in the center. Your opponent often hopes you take it — and stop developing new pieces. They will bring out more pieces and chase your tired forces around, leading to an attack on the uncastled king.