Mortimer Trap of Ruy Lopez

In the Spanish Game (Ruy Lopez), in one variation, white needs to be wary of grabbing a pawn early:

  1. e4         e5
  2. Nf3       Nc6
  3. Bb5      Nf6
  4. d3         Ne7
  5. Nxe5?  c6  (black threatens Qa5+)
  6. Nc4      d6  (to avoid Nd6 mate)
  7. Ba4       b5 (winning a piece for black, which should be decisive)

Nevertheless, black’s fourth move (Ne7) appears to accomplish little else besides setting a trap for an unwary player who would snatch up a pawn. Watch out for that apparently free pawn, especially when two of your pieces are unprotected.


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