Have you ever thought how we compare with chess players of past eras? How would the current World Champion, Anand, have gone against players from the 19th century such as Morphy and Anderssen? Surely today we are much better than our predecessors? We can run faster, jump higher and we live longer. We must be much smarter as we have invented computers an flown to the moon.
The other day I was reading the war diary of my great uncle who was killed in World War 1. He was just an ordinary guy but I was surprised to find that he was clearly more literate than I and must have had a very good education. Are we really better than those who have gone before us?
Let’s put it to the test. I’d like to take you back to the year 1619 when the Italian chess player Gioachino Greco reached the following position as White. He didn’t have a computer to help him but he wrapped up the game very nicely in three moves. Can you do as well?
[fen caption="White to Play and Win"]r1b3nr/pppk2qp/1bnp4/4p1BQ/2BPP3/2P5/PP3PPP/RN3RK1 w KQkq – 0 1[/fen]