Moscow 1935

Second International Tournament Moscow 1935

Two variations of a scarce book

 

First published: June 29, 2011

Last Update:     Sept 24, 2011

 

Three very strong tournaments were organized in Moscow in 1925, 1935 and 1936 - they are known as the First, Second and Third Moscow International Tournaments.

 

This article is about the tournament book of the Second Moscow tournament played in 1935. The joint winners were Flohr and Botvinnik with 13 points out of 19, followed by Em. Lasker, Capablanca, Spielmann, Kan, Loewenfisch, Lilienthal, Ragozin, Romanovski, Rabinovich, Riumin, Alatortsev, Goglidze, Lisitsyn, Bogatirchuk, Stahlberg, Pirc, Chekhover and Vera Menchik.

 

First, a description of the book:

 

Krylenko, Nikolai (editor), and others: Vtoroi mezhdunarodny shakhmatny turnir Moskva 1935. 

Moskva/Leningrad, OGIZ - Fizkultura i turizm, 1936, First edition. title in both Russian and French, 596 pages. Original cloth, dust jacket not issued. 21.5 x 15.5 cm.

Published 12,000 copies, of which 2,000 are on special paper called Vischimz

LN 5506, Sakharov 500, Sacharov 2nd edition 995.

 

The book includes annotations to all games by Soviet masters, as well as Lilienthal and Euwe. The book also has Krylenko's preface, articles by Zubarev and Rabinovich, indexes, crosstables etc. Nikolai Krylenko is identified as the Main editor (Responsible editor) on page 5, but in fact he wrote just the preface. The real main editor of the book was probably S. O. Weinstein (Vainstein) - his name is not stated on page 5 among other co-authors but his name is given in the impressum (tirazh) as Editor-Organizer (Redaktor-organizator). 

 

The book itself is an interesting collectors' item, especially if in nice condition. Copies which contain Krylenko's preface, are valued much more highly than those where the preface is missing (was cut out). Nikolai Vasilyevich Krylenko, May 2, 1885 - July 29, 1938, was president of the Soviet Chess Federation and the main organizer of various chess events, including all three Moscow tournaments. He was one of the high commanders of the Russian revolution in 1917, and later one of the leading figures of the Soviet regime - People's Commissar of Justice and Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation. He incurred Stalin's disfavour in 1936-37 and was executed on July 29, 1938 after a trial which lasted just 20 minutes.

 

When Krylenko became an undesirable person for the Soviet regime, his foreword on pages 7-11 was cut out of any remaining unsold copies of this book and his name on page 5 was erased or blackened. Similarly, Krylenko's preface was cut out from two other books of the time - Tretiy Mezhdunarodny shakhmatny turnir Moskva 1936 (published Moskva-Leningrad 1937, LN 5530, Sakharov 504) and Match Flohr-Botvinnik (published Moskva 1934, LN 5097, Sakharov 493). 

 

The Moscow 1935 tournament book appears in 2 variations:

 

1) edition on common paper (10,000 copies), the pages have always more or less browned with age

2) de-luxe edition on quality paper Vishchimz (2,000 copies). In all 3 copies I have examined, the pages were quite white. 

 

VishChimZ is an abbreviation for Visherskie Chimicheskie zavody (Вишерские химические заводы, Vishersk Chemical Factory), which was a chemical factory near the town of Berezniki in Perm region (thank you to Wladimir Sokolow for this information).  

 

The difference in color of the paper is clear from the pictures. 

 

Some copies have a Knight below the title on the front cover - this Knight may appear in both the ordinary and the de-luxe editions.

 


Picture 1: spine and front cover of the book. Note the Knight under the book title of the right-hand book - this Knight may appear at both the ordinary and de-luxe editions (the ordinary edition is on the left, and the de-luxe one is on the right).
 

            

 

 

Picture 2: title page (the ordinary edition comes first below, followed by the de-luxe one).
 

 

Picture 3: page 5 with the list of co-authors. In copies which were censored, Krylenko's name in the penultimate line is crossed out or blacked out. The name of the real editor, S. O. Weinstein is not present here (the ordinary edition is on the left, and the de-luxe one is on the right).
 

            

 

 

Picture 4: page 7 - here Krylenko's preface begins. In censored copies, Krylenko's preface has been cut out (the ordinary edition is on the left, and the de-luxe one is on the right).
 

            

 

 

Picture 5: a sample from the book (the ordinary edition is on the left, and the de-luxe one is on the right).
 

            

 

 

Picture 6: Impressum (tirazh), which shows the circulation as being 12,000 copies, of which 2,000 are on de-luxe paper Vishchimz. S. O. Weinstein's name is given as Editor-organizer (the ordinary edition is on the left, and the de-luxe one is on the right).
 

            

 

 

Picture 7: front free endpaper (the ordinary edition is on the left, and the de-luxe one is on the right).
 

            

 

 

Picture 8: the bottom edge (the ordinary edition is on the left, and the de-luxe one is on the right).