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Jul 26, 1885: Giuseppe Gasbarri died in Florence, Italy.
Jul 26, 1916: Henry Charlick died in Adelaide, Australia.
Jul 26, 1928: Stanley Kubrick was born in New York, USA.
Jul 26, 1955: Stefan Djuric was born in Beograd, Yugoslavia.
Jul 26, 1957: Nicholas De Firmian was born in Fresno, California, USA.
Jul 26, 1971: Ugo Pasquinelli died in Treviso, Italy.
Jul 26, 1971: Vladimir Petkov was born, Bulgaria.
Nicholas Ernest (Nick) de Firmian (born July 26, 1957 in Fresno, California), is a chess grandmaster and three-time U.S. chess champion, winning in 1987 (with Joel Benjamin), 1995, and 1998. He also tied for first in 2002, butLarry Christiansen won the playoff. He is also a chess writer, most famous for his work in writing the 13th, 14th, and 15th editions of the important chess opening treatise Modern Chess Openings.
He has represented the United States at several Interzonals and played on the United States Olympiad teams of 1980, 1984, 1986, 1988, 1990, 1996, 1998 and 2000. De Firmian earned the International Master title in 1979 and the GM title in 1985. He currently resides in Denmark with his wife, Christine, who is a chess expert and past member of the Danish Women's Chess Team.
He won the 1983 Canadian Open Chess Championship. In 1986, he won the World Open and the first prize of $21,000, at that time a record for a Swiss system tournament. De Firmian was a founding member of Prochess, a grandmaster advocacy group dedicated to promoting chess in the United States. He has a degree in physics from the University of California, Berkeley.
Grandmaster de Firmian is a noted expert on the chess openings and in 1990 he revised Modern Chess Openings, 13th edition (MCO-13). In 1999 he wrote the 14th edition of Modern Chess Openings (MCO-14), which, along with Nunn's Chess Openings (NCO), is considered an outstanding single volume opening reference in English. He also helped prepare the chess opening book for the IBM Deep Blueteam for its successful 1997 match with Garry Kasparov.
In 2006 he revised and expanded the classic 1921 book Chess Fundamentals, by José Capablanca. The edition was harshly criticized by chess historian Edward Winter, who claimed that de Firmian "destroyed" the book by changing Capablanca's writing and removing games from previous editions to include new games not played by Capablanca. De Firmian also wrote the 15th edition of Modern Chess Openings, which was published in April 2008.
Henry Charlick (July 8, 1845 London, England - July 26, 1916 Adelaide, Australia) was a leadingAustralian chess master in the 1880s. He won the second Australian Chess Championship atAdelaide 1887 with 7.5 points out of 9 games, ahead of reigning champion Frederick Karl Esling (7) and George H. D. Gossip (6.5). Charlick scored 6/8 in the third championship at Melbourne1888, tying for first with William Crane, Jr., ahead of William Tullidge (5.5), but narrowly lost the playoff to Crane (1 win, 1 draw, 2 losses).
In the early 1890s, Charlick introduced the dubious chess opening 1.d4 e5?!, which is sometimes called the Charlick Gambit. Charlick's idea was to meet 2.dxe5 with the gambit 2...d6 "with the object of preventing White from playing a close game." Today, 1.d4 e5 is usually called the Englund Gambit, and the 2.dxe5 d6 offshoot that Charlick pioneered is usually called the Blackburne-Hartlaub Gambit. Modern theory considers 2...d6 even more dubious than the main line of 2...Nc6 3.Nf3 Qe7. White obtains a large advantage after 2...d6 3.Nf3 Bg4 4.Bg5! Qd7 5.exd6 Bxd6 6.Nbd2.
Here are two games showing Charlick's attacking style of play:
Apperly-Charlick, Correspondence, Australia 1894 1.d4 e5 2.dxe5 d6 Charlick's favorite gambit. 3.Bf4 Nc6 4.exd6 Qf6 5.Bc1 Bxd6 6.c3 Bf5 7.e3 O-O-O 8.Nd2 Qg6 9.h3 Nf6 10.Ngf3 Rhe8 11.Qa4 Bc2 12.Nb3 Ne4 13.Nh4 Qg3! 14.fxg3 Bxg3+ 15.Ke2 Bd1# 0–1
Charlick-William Crane, Jr., Australian Championship playoff 1888 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bb5 Bb4 5.d3 d6 6.O-O O-O 7.Ne2 Ne7 8.Ng3 Ng6 9.Bg5 Be6 10.c3 Bc5 11.Nh5 c6 12.Ba4 Bg4 13.Nxf6+ gxf6 14.Bh6 Re8 15.h3 Bd7 16.b4 Bb6 17.Bb3 Be6 18.Nh2 f5 19.exf5 Bxf5 20.Qf3 Be6 21.Ng4 Bxb3 22.Nf6+ Kh8 23.Nxe8 Bc2 24.Qxf7 1–0
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