Jose Capablanca - Chess History Part 9 (Intellectual Input)

May 1, 2008, 6:38 AM |


Capablanca's Intellectual input include a variant game of chess and multiple writings.


Capablanca "invents" Capablanca chess

Capablanca predicted that chess could face major problems if the various top players chose to draw every game. To prevent this from happening, Capablanca suggested a new variation on chess, called "Capablanca chess", to be played on a 10x8 board, with two new pieces introduced:


Capablanca chess. Archbishop (bishop+knight compound) is placed between knight and bishop on the queen's side, chancellor (rook+knight compound) on the king's side.


His idea was that the added pieces and board size would increase the complexity of chess and allow the strongest player more opportunities to turn the game in his favor. Contrary to the assertion of some critics, Capablanca proposed this complicated variant while he was world champion, not as sour grapes after losing his title. He played a few games of this variant against Edward Lasker.


Capablanca also contributed to chess via his writings:

  • Havana 1913, by Jose Raul Capablanca. This is the only tournament book which he wrote. It was originally published in Spanish in 1913 in Havana. Edward Winter translated it into English, and it appeared as a British Chess Magazine reprint, Quarterly #18, in the early 1980s.
  • A Primer of Chessby José Raúl Capablanca (Preface by Benjamin Anderson. Originally published in 1935. Harvest Books, November 2002, ISBN 0156028077)
  • Chess Fundamentalsby José Raúl Capablanca (Originally published in 1921. Everyman Chess, October 1994, ISBN 1857440730) Revised and updated by Nick de Firmian in 2006, ISBN 0-8129-3681-7.
  • My Chess Careerby José Raúl Capablanca (Hardinge Simpole Limited, October 2003, ISBN 1843820919)
  • World's Championship Matches, 1921 and 1927by José Raúl Capablanca (Dover, June 1977, ISBN 0486231895)
  • Last Lecturesby José Raúl Capablanca (Simon and Schuster, January 1966, ASIN B0007DZW6W)