23 September 2011

O'zapft is!

It started last Saturday — the world's largest fair, the famous Munich Oktoberfest. Traditionally, at noon, there was the twelve gun salute and the tapping of the first keg of Oktoberfest beer by the incumbent Mayor of Munich crying "O'zapft is!" afterwards.

I found a chess problem (diagram 1) which is consistent with this subject. It has the slogan "At the Oktoberfest". For a particular reason, I give the original stipulation in German. The translation is something like "White checkmates by making two moves in a row according to the rules of chess". This composer is known for his humorous chess problems and I picked another one for you (diagram 2). Have fun!

  1Hieronymus Fischer  
unknown source, 1879
Weiß muss 2 Züge auf einmal machen ohne gegen die Schachgesetze zu verstoßen und setzt so zugleich matt

  2Hieronymus Fischer  
Humor im Schach, 1904

1This is an Oktoberfest joke which is spoilt by the translation, sorry. White makes one move from the beer-mug, that is takes a sip, and then makes one move on the board to checkmate: 1. Nf3#. The joke lies in the ambiguity of the German word Zug. Of course, if White had to make two legal moves in a row on the board, he could not deliver checkmate.
2There are eight black knights and three black pawns on the board. Therefore, one of these pieces has to be removed:
-Na4: 1. Qc3#
-Na7: 1. Nb5#
-Nb3: 1. Rd2#
-Nc2: 1. Qe3#
-Nd8: 1. Ne6#
-Nf7: 1. Qe5#
-Nh3: 1. Qf4#
-Nh6: 1. Nf5#
-Pc4: 1. Qd3#
-Pd5: 1. Re4#
-Pg4: 1. Nf3#

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