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  • The English Opening gets its name from the English School of chess players who brought this opening into popularity. If Black replies 1...e4, the position resembles a Sicilian Defense with colors reversed. For this reason, the opening is also sometimes referred to as the Sicilian Attack. Howard Staunton who is perhaps the most famous player of the English School of chess, wrote in his Chess Players’ Handbook: “in the present instance, you have the advantage of the move, a circumstance which seems to have escaped the notice of some writers, since, with a strange inconsistency, they carry on the game from this position, and decide it in favor of the defending player, who is a move behind; while in the ‘Sicilian game’ 1.e4 c5; when the position is reversed and you have Black’s position, and in addition the advantage of the move, you can barely make an even game.” Staunton played the English Opening six times in his match against Saint-Amant. This opening gained popularity during the Hypermodern Era of Chess in the 1920’s. Rather than directly occupying the center of the board with pawns such as the case with either 1.d4 or 1.e4, White seeks to influence the center from the flank. Today, the English Opening is the third most popular first move behind 1.e4 and 1.d4.
  • "This is an unexceptionable opening for first player. It is considered by Steinitz and Blackburne much stronger than P. to K. B. 4. We have a preference for the latter move" (Bird, p. 158).

Computer Analysis

  1. Stockfish 6: 1; 1...e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.e3 Bb4 5.d4 d6 6.Be2 Bxc3+ 7.bxc3 O-O 8.O-O Re8 9.Ba3 Bg4 10.h3 Bh5 11.Rb1 e4 12.Nd2 Bxe2 13.Qxe2 b6 14.Qd1 Qd7 15.Qc2 a6 16.Rfd1 Qf5 17.Bb2 0.05/33;
  2. Stockfish 6: 2; 1...Nf6 2.d4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 O-O 5.Nf3 b6 6.Be2 Bxc3+ 7.bxc3 Bb7 8.O-O d6 9.Bb2 h6 10.Nd2 c5 11.Qc2 Nbd7 12.Rab1 Qc7 13.h3 Rfe8 14.e4 Rad8 15.f3 e5 16.Bd3 Bc6 17.f4 0.15/33;
  3. Stockfish 6: 3; 1...c5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.e3 e6 4.d4 d5 5.a3 a6 6.cxd5 exd5 7.dxc5 Bxc5 8.b4 Bd6 9.Bb2 O-O 10.Be2 Nc6 11.O-O Be6 12.Nc3 Re8 13.Rc1 Rc8 14.b5 Ne5 15.Nxe5 Bxe5 16.f4 Bxc3 17.Bxc3 0.16/33;
  4. Stockfish 6: 4; 1...e6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 O-O 5.Nf3 b6 6.Be2 Bxc3+ 7.bxc3 Bb7 8.O-O d6 9.Nd2 c5 10.Bb2 Nc6 11.Qc2 h6 12.Rab1 Rc8 13.Rfd1 Qd7 14.h3 Rfe8 15.e4 e5 16.d5 Ne7 17.Qb3 0.18/33;
  5. Stockfish 6: 5; 1...b6 2.Nc3 Bb7 3.d4 e6 4.e4 Bb4 5.f3 Ne7 6.a3 Bxc3+ 7.bxc3 O-O 8.Bd3 c5 9.Ne2 Nbc6 10.O-O d6 11.Be3 Rc8 12.Qa4 Na5 13.Rfc1 f6 14.d5 e5 15.Rab1 Ng6 16.Qc2 h6 17.Kh1 0.25/33;
  6. Stockfish 6: 6; 1...c6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 cxd5 5.Bf4 e6 6.e3 Bd6 7.Bxd6 Qxd6 8.Nf3 O-O 9.Be2 Nc6 10.O-O Bd7 11.Rc1 Rfc8 12.h3 Rab8 13.Nb5 Qe7 14.a3 a6 15.Nc3 h6 16.Ne5 b5 17.Qc2 0.28/33;
  7. Stockfish 6: 7; 1...a6 2.d4 e6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.Bf4 Nf6 7.e3 Be7 8.Be2 O-O 9.Ne5 Be6 10.O-O Nxe5 11.Bxe5 Re8 12.a3 Bd6 13.Bxd6 Qxd6 14.Qc2 h6 15.h3 c6 16.Rac1 Rab8 17.Rfd1 0.30/33;


  • 1...b5 (Halibut Gambit, English)
  • 1...c5 (English, Symmetrical)
  • 1...c6 (English, Anglo-Slav System)
  • 1...d5
  • 1...d6
  • 1...e5 (English, Reversed Sicilian)
  • 1...e6
  • 1...f5 (Anglo-Dutch)
  • 1...g5
  • 1...g6 (Great Snake, English)
  • 1...Nc6 (Anglo-Lithuanian Variation, English)
  • 1...Nf6
Image:chess zhor 26.png
Image:chess zver 26.png a8 rd b8 nd c8 bd d8 qd e8 kd f8 bd g8 nd h8 rd Image:chess zver 26.png
a7 pd b7 pd c7 pd d7 pd e7 pd f7 pd g7 pd h7 pd
a6 b6 c6 d6 e6 f6 g6 h6
a5 b5 c5 d5 e5 f5 g5 h5
a4 b4 c4 pl d4 e4 f4 g4 h4
a3 b3 c3 d3 e3 f3 g3 h3
a2 pl b2 pl c2 d2 pl e2 pl f2 pl g2 pl h2 pl
a1 rl b1 nl c1 bl d1 ql e1 kl f1 bl g1 nl h1 rl
Image:chess zhor 26.png
English Opening
Image:Chess_zver_27_2.PNG a8 rl b8 nl c8 bl d8 kl e8 ql f8 bl g8 nl h8 rl Image:Chess_zver_27_2.PNG
a7 pl b7 pl c7 pl d7 pl e7 pl f7 g7 pl h7 pl
a6 b6 c6 d6 e6 f6 g6 h6
a5 b5 c5 d5 e5 f5 pl g5 h5
a4 b4 c4 d4 e4 f4 g4 h4
a3 b3 c3 d3 e3 f3 g3 h3
a2 pd b2 pd c2 pd d2 pd e2 pd f2 pd g2 pd h2 pd
a1 rd b1 nd c1 bd d1 kd e1 qd f1 bd g1 nd h1 rd
English Opening


Chess Program

Stockfish Six(6)


“The Stockfish engine was developed by Tord Romstad, Marco Costalba, and Joona Kiiski. It is now being developed and maintained by the Stockfish community.”


  1. Bird, H. E. The Chess Openings, Considered Critically and Practically (London: Dean, 1877; New York: Lockwood, 1880, 1886) ISBN 9781166986032
  2. Danelishen, Gary (2008), The Final Theory of Chess, Phillidor Press, ISBN 978-0981567709
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