BADEN-BADEN 1870Baden-Baden 1870 can be regarded as the first super tournament. In comparison with London 1851, London 1862 and Paris 1867, three main changes were made: a) time was restricted with clocks, b) draws counted as half points, and c) only international top players were invited. The similarities with the later events in Tilburg, Linares and Dortmund are striking.
Kolisch was the driving force during the preparation and held the function of secretary in the organising committee. Prince Stourdza was president. Writer Ivan Turgenyev lived part of the year in Baden-Baden and was vice-president. The committee of appeal consisted of Baron Maythény and Kolisch.
Ten first-rate players participated in the double rounded event: Anderssen, Steinitz, Neumann, Blackburne, Paulsen, De Vere, Rosenthal, Winawer, von Minckwitz and Stern. Lange, Zukertort, Jakoby and Meitner did not participate for various reasons. The event lasted from 18 July until 4 August 1870. Each day one game was played. Double rounds of two participants were played consecutively. Twenty moves had to be made per hour. The first time control was after two hours. Play started at 9 AM. If a player did not appear within one-and-a-half hour, the game was forfeited.
The chess players
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
1 Anderssen ** 11 00 1½ 11 1½ 10 10 11 11 3000 francs
2 Steinitz 00 ** 11 0½ 11 11 11 ½1 ½0 10½ 600 francs
3 Neumann 11 00 ** 1½ 01 01 11 0½ 11 10 200 francs
4 Blackburne 0½ 1½ 0½ ** 10 11 1½ ½½ 11 10 200 francs
5 Paulsen 00 00 10 01 ** 10 1½ 1½ ½1 7½
6 De Vere 0½ 00 10 00 01 ** 01 11 01 6½
7 Winawer 01 00 00 0½ 0½ 10 ** 1½ 11 6½
8 Rosenthal 01 ½0 1½ ½½ 0½ 00 0½ ** 00 5
9 Minckwitz 00 ½1 00 00 ½0 10 00 11 ** 5
The games were hard fought in Baden-Baden 1870. Draws were rare. Anderssen led most of the tournament with uncompromising chess. Steinitz had a disastrous start and a great finish. Rosenthal wanted to score at least a draw against the strongest players and called it a duel scar or ‘Schmitzel’. But he forfeited his four games against De Vere and Minckwitz.
The first prize of 3000 francs was made available by the administration of the ‘Conversation house’ or Casino of Baden-Baden. A prize of 600 francs consisted of the registration fees of 50 francs per participant. The Committee added a third prize of 400 francs. Four players received a substantial amount of money.
The tournament was played in great harmony. Three difficulties occurred: A) It was difficult to register on the Schwarzwald clocks, when a player overstepped the time limit. Decades later this was solved by a ‘flag’. The problem could have been ended right away, if the famous cuckoo clocks had been used. B) Sometimes chess positions were repeated endlessly. Restrictions came in later tournaments. C) The start at 9 AM was early for De Vere and Minckwitz.
Long reports about Baden-Baden 1870 were published in the ‘Deutsche Schachzeitung’ (edited by Minckwitz) and ‘Neue Berliner Schachzeitung’ (edited by Anderssen and Zukertort). Gilliam and Swift published an English translation. Fifteen tournament games and one casual encounter were selected by me (Jan van Reek) for new analyses.
THE FRANCO-GERMAN WAR
The finish of Baden-Baden 1870 marked the end of the beginning of hostilities. The advance of French troop alongside of the Rhine went through Weissemburg. They had to withdraw at Wörth on 6 August 1870. The German army had larger numbers of men at the front and used the superior Krupp canons. The thunder of the artillery could be heard at a distance of 30 km in Baden-Baden. At the end of August, Napoleon III was beaten in the battle of Sedan. He surrendered with his army on 2 September. Stern sent a card from the fields near Sedan on 4 September: "Emperor Napoleon has been mated". Paris surrendered after a siege in January 1871. The German states unified. Germany gained Elsace-Lorraine. France became a republic. The casino of Baden-Baden was closed in 1872.
Six players carried out double rounds in Baden-Baden from 7 until 17 ii
2013. Grenke sponsored the event. Caruana led by one point on Anand at the
end of round 8, but the final standings became: Anand 6½/10,
Caruana 6, Adams and Meier 5, Naiditsch 4, Fridman 3½.