Nimzowitsch's My System


Hi, I was wondering if there is any free and legal version of Nimzowitsch's My System for download, even if it is in the original language. I heard it was a a great book, and I would think that the copy rights would be up by now on the early translations or at least the original text.




It's an absolute classic, although a difficult read.

IMO well worth purchasing.

And no, I do not think there is a legal free edition of it to be downloaded. Patents are still applicable for this (don't ask which patents, I simply don't know).


You don't need to invest anything.  There is a free downloadable pdf somewhere.

Sorry, I don't have the link.


Well, Google will come out with several "free" versions of the book. But I do not think the are really free.

I can give you a patent-free copy of the book, but there is a slight problem with it: It is the rare first edition of the book in Russian (1930), so you must know Russian to use it. I own it, and I have scanned it some five years ago.

I also have the latest edition ( ) , which I certainly cannot distribute. But OK, 20 bucks is very cheap for such a book.


Hi - I don't know the answer to your question, but I do know there is a book by Nimzovich (spelling?) called "Chess Praxis, The Praxis of My System", which was translated into English in 1936, after his death.  There is a paperback edition of this that was first published by Dover Publications in 1962.  It's 364 pages, and was only $3.00 back then.  It lists the Standard Book Number as: 486-20296-8.  It has in it 109 annotated games, which it says are not in "My System", so it is a separate work, but along the same principles.  There is a ton of great stuff in this about positional play.  If I could only play like him!!

Hope this helps you somehow - best of luck with your search!


Amazon appears to have both My System and Chess Praxis, BTW.


Nimzowitsch has 3 publications that I know of:  As far as I know the copyrights have not expired.  Although a revised edition of "My System" has been published by Yasser Sierewan with algebraic notation. All prior publications are in descriptive notation.

"Die Blockade"

"Chess Praxis"

"My System"

All 3 publications cover the same concepts and principles:

Concepts:  Theory of Center Control- Overprotection and Prophylactic

Principles: Chess is Siege Warfare:  Restrain and Blockade,

                Hypermodern Theory of Chess-The Small But Secure Center  

                and Manouvering Along Inner Lines.

Overarching Principle:

Winning chess is the strategically and tactically correct advance of the pawn mass.


Thanks a lot for the advice everyone. I did some digging I can't find anything legal, but I did find out the library at my school has a copy so I could just read that.  If there is too much in the book to learn/remember, I can buy the book down the road.  Thanks especially to IM pfren, but I can't read Russian.  I was expecting the book to be in German or French, both of which I have some knowledge.


If you send me your address i'll mail you brand new copies of both books. They are both excellent and $$ shouldn't keep you from having 2 great books. Feel free to send me your mailing address anytime on here as a private message.





I bought it very recently for 10 quid; - the only chess book I have ever bought, and so far it's looking like a good investment.


Hi there! If you can read Russian, there is a free "My System" on this website.

If not, there are some other free books in English that you may like. Winter's KINGS OF CHESS, for instance, feaures the World Championship matches from Lasker to Botvinnik. You may need some special reader programs for them but the site directs you to where you could download that as well.

I must admit that I have not read it myself although it is considered a classic and I will have to do so some time. Meanwhile, if you are looking for a good investment (I mean if you must spend any money at all) in books on the Middlegame, may I recommend Silman's HOW TO REASSESS YOUR CHESS. His style is easy and lots of fun. I think I learned more from this book than anywhere else. There will be other books just as good for learning but this gives you a good foundation start with.


Or try here: Laughing


                       I got My System at Barnes & Noble for about $20. Its in English and it has a white cover.


"My System" by Aron Nimzowitsch video series on youtube

Hope this helps


Thanks jv. I've read most of the book, but it will be nice to hear some commentary.


If anyone would like an entire FREE copy of "My System" go to this link and click on FREE SOFTWARE DOWNLOADS


On youtube if u search for the book there is a guy who does an audio n actually show u how the pieces move


is this a legal version?