Morphy's Muzios

| 13

The Muzio Gambit: 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.Bc4 g4 5.0-0

The Muzio Gambit was quite popular during the 18th and 19th century, although it was most often employed as a tool of strong players against weaker ones.
For an overview of some theory, history and representative games see:

Muzio Madness Part I  for a little theory and history;
Muzio Madness Part II
for various notable games of the Muzio and
Muzio Madness Part III for the Double or Wild Muzio.


     We have 16 recorded Muzios played by Morphy. Of these, 11 were played giving odds or either a Rook or a Knight and 4 were played during blindfold simuls. Only one surviving game was played on even terms with one opponent, but the opponent, the venue and the situation are unknown. Morphy won every game but one, played at Kt odds against Charles de Maurian, which was a draw.

     Here are Morphy's 14 Muzios:

Rook Odds:


Knight Odds:

    Charles Amédée de Maurian had the distiction of being the only person who learn chess from Paul Morphy. Despite that fact that he always accepted a minimum of Knight odds from Morphy ( erroneously gives 2 games even - duplicates of a Muzio given here), de Maurian developed into a very strong player.





       Anonymous amateur in an off-hand game at the 1st American Chess Congress.


     Preston Ware, born in Boston, moved to Baltimore where he eventually founded P. Ware, Jr., & Co., one of the leading boot and shoe dealers in Baltimore.  He was also one of the founders of the Baltimore Chess Assciation. He moved his family back to Boston and became one of the members of the Order of the Mandarins of the Yellow Button.   He was president of the Boston Chess Club from 1868-1873. Ware took part in second, third and fifth American Chess Congresses and in the international tournament at Vienna in 1882 in which he defeated, among others, Max Weiss and William Steinitz and drew with Capt. MacKenzie and Mikhail Tschigorin.

     Chevalier St. Leon - a French amateur about whom nothing seems to be known

Blindfold Simul Games:

     One of 5 boards played against members of the New Orleans Chess Club:



     One of four boards played against members of the New Orleans Chess Club:


     One of eight boards played at the London Chess Club:
     On April 13, 1859, the London Chess Club entreated Morphy to give a blindfold simul and Morphy agreed. Eight strong players joined the exhibition with the Rev. J. P. Jones as probably the least known. The demonstration started at 5:00 pm  and ended at 1:00 am due to the lateness of the hour. Morphy won 2 and drew 1. The rest were never finished. The game against Jones, which took five hours, was the first one completed.

     One of four boards played at the Academy of Music in Philadelphia with proceeds going to the Mt. Vernon Fund for the preservation of George Washington's home.

Morphy's opponent, like Morphy, studied Law.  During the soon-to-occur Civil War, Tilghman served the Union as a breveted Brig. General. He is best emembered as the inventor of the sandblasting process.  In chess, he was one of the promising students of Philadelphia chess guru, Prof. Henry Vethake, at the Aethenium, which housed Philadelphia's first chess group.


     Even Game about which nothing is known: