Tarrasch Defense

Tarrasch Defense

Infobox chess opening

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moves =1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 c5
ECO =D32-D34
birth =
nameorigin =
parentopening =Queen's Gambit Declined
chessgid =

The Tarrasch Defense is a chess opening characterized by the opening moves:1.d4 d5:2.c4 e6:3.Nc3 c5Although White often plays 3.Nf3 on his third move instead, following up with Nc3 soon afterwards. The Tarrasch is a variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined.

With his third move, Black makes an aggressive bid for central space. After White plays cxd5 and eventually dxc5, Black will often be left with an isolated pawn on the d-file. Such a pawn may be weak since it is undefended by other pawns, but it also grants Black a foothold in the center.

The opening is named after and was advocated by the German master Siegbert Tarrasch who enjoyed the mobility that Black received, even at the cost of suffering the isolated pawn. Although many other masters rejected the Tarrasch Defense because of the pawn weakness, Tarrasch continued to play this opening and rejected other variations of the Queen's Gambit, even to the point of putting question marks on routine moves in all variations except the Tarrasch (which he awarded an exclamation mark, see punctuation (chess)) in his book "Die moderne Schachpartie".

The Tarrasch Defense is considered sound. Even if Black fails to make use of his mobility and winds up in an endgame with his isolated pawn, he may still be able to hold a draw if he defends accurately.

In the Encyclopedia of Chess Openings, the Tarrasch Defense has codes D32 through D34.

Variations

When White plays against the Tarrasch, the most common setup is to fianchetto his king's bishop in order to put pressure on Black's isolated d5-pawn. Black's 3...c5 has ruled out any possibility of blocking such a fianchettoed bishop by means of ...c6.

wedish variation

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Swedish variation
The "Swedish Variation" (also called the "Folkestone Variation") is a sharp line beginning 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 c5 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Nf3 Nc6 6. g3 c4. Black now has a three to two queenside pawn majority, and will try to expand with ...b5. White typically tries to achieve a pawn break in the center with ...e4. The line is considered somewhat dubious, and is rarely seen nowadays.

emi-Tarrasch variation

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Semi-Tarrasch defense
The variation 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 c5 5.cxd5 Nxd5 is called the "Semi-Tarrasch Defense". Unlike the regular Tarrasch, Black does not suffer an isolated pawn, but he cedes a spatial advantage to White. The Semi-Tarrasch has ECO codes D40 through D42.

References

*Citation
last=Colins|first=Sam
year=2005
title=Understanding the Chess Openings
publisher = Gambit Publications
ID=ISBN 1-904600-28-X

* Citation
last = de Firmian|first=Nick|authorlink=Nick de Firmian
year = 2008
title = Modern Chess Openings
edition= fifteenth
publisher = McKay
ID = ISBN 978-0-8129-3682-7


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