The Benoni Defense
is a group of chess openings
generally characterized by the opening moves 1.d4 c5 2.d5 although Black's ...c5 and White's answer d5, are often delayed.
The most usual opening sequence for the Benoni is 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5. Black can then sacrifice a pawn by 3...b5 (leading to the Benko Gambit
). If Black elects not to sacrifice then 3....e6 is the most common move, though 3....d6 or 3...g6 are also seen, typically leading to main lines.
"Benoni" is a Hebrew
term meaning "son of sorrow," the name of an 1825 Manuscript about this opening. "Whenever I felt in a sorrowful mood and wanted to take refuge from melancholy, I sat over a chessboard, for one or two hours according to circumstances. Thus this book came into being, and its name, Ben-Oni, 'Son of Sadness,' should indicate its origin." - Aaron Reinganum
The Old Benoni
starts with 1.d4 c5. The Old Benoni may transpose to the Czech Benoni, but there are a few independent variations. This form has never attracted serious interest in high-level play, though Alexander Alekhine
defeated Efim Bogoljubow
with it in one game of their second match, in 1934. The Old Benoni is sometimes called the Blackburne Defense
, after Englishman Joseph Henry Blackburne
, the first player known to have used it successfully.
In the Czech Benoni
, also sometimes known as the Hromadka Benoni
, after Karel Hromádka
, Black plays 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 e5.... Read More