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Siegbert Tarrasch (b. 5 March 1862 -- d. 1934) was a chess grandmaster winning chess tournaments in Breslau in 1889; Berlin, 1889; Manchester, 1890; Dresden, 1892; and Nuremberg, 1892. In 1893 he tied Tchigorin and in 1894 in Nuremberg he beat Walbrodt 7.5-0.5. He came in first again in Leipzig in 1894.

Tarrasch was born in Breslau, Germany and was a bright student. He had a club foot, but did not let this physical abnormality effect his life adversely. He started playing chess at the age of 15, but went on to a career in medicine. His tournament victories brought enough notice that he was challenged by Wilhelm Steintz to a match for the World Championship. Alas, Tarrasch declined due to his obligations to his medical practice.

Tarrach came in second to Pillsbury at the Hastings tournament in 1895, and to Emanuel Lasker at the Nuremberg tournament in 1896. He won first prize in Vienna in 1898 and in Monte Carlo in 1903. In 1914 Tarrasch beat Nimzowitch with a famous two bishop sacrifice. Along with Lasker, Capablanca, Alekhine, and Marshall, Tarrasch was named one of the 5 original grandmasters by Czar Nicholas.

Asked how many moves ahead he looked, Tarrasch replied, "I look one move ahead ... the best!"

Tarrasch wrote several chess books, the most notable being The Game of Chess, wherein he wrote

"Chess is a form of intellectual productiveness. Therein lies its peculiar charm. Intellectual productiveness is one of the greatest joys -- if not the greatest one -- of human existence. It is not everyone who can write a play, or build a bridge, or even make a good joke. But in chess everyone can, everyone must, be intellectually productive and so can share in this select delight. I have always a slight feeling of pity for the man who has no knowledge of chess, just as I would pity the man who has remained ignorant of love. Chess, like love, like music, has the power to make men happy."

A powerful variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined is named after him: the Tarrasch Defense.

Reference: http://pages.infinet.net/tarrasch/Tarrasch.html

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