What is the shortest known on the board game played between GM rated players that ended with a checkmate? "Shortest" does not mean the game has to be very short.

Note: Edited this question twice clarifying some ambiguity.

  • 2
    Just to clarify, you are looking for the shortest game between two players who have official GM titles. Does the time control matter to you? Could the game be blindfold?
    – Akavall
    Commented Jan 3, 2013 at 20:43

2 Answers 2


Keres-Arlamowski 1950, comes very close

[FEN ""]
[Event "Szczawno Zdroj"]
[Date "1950"]
[Result "1-0"]
[White "Paul Keres"]
[Black "Edward Arlamowski"]

1. e4 c6 2.Nc3 d5 3.Nf3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Qe2 Nbd7 6.Nd6# 1-0

I heard Mr Arlamovski was an IM at the time - but given Keres' level, and the fact that there were many fewer IM's back then - probably puts the game into the GM level category.

  • Thanks, but what if we restrict to games that are "really" GM level? I was just curious.
    – Masked Man
    Commented Jan 1, 2013 at 2:45
  • 2
    can't think of any; I suspect most GM's would actually resign before getting mated :)
    – Joe
    Commented Jan 2, 2013 at 21:24
  • 2
    Note that Arlamowski fell into exactly the trap from this answer: chess.stackexchange.com/a/653/167, except that White has played Nf3 instead of d4.
    – ETD
    Commented Jan 3, 2013 at 22:43
  • What a sucker! Hah, but good find :D +1
    – Travis J
    Commented Jan 5, 2013 at 8:44

Reti-Tartakower, Vienna 1910, must be a good candidate, although Tartakower resigned one move before checkmate.

[FEN ""]
[Event "Vienna"]
[Date "1910"]
[Result "1-0"]
[White "Richard Reti"]
[Black "Savielly Tartakower"]

1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Nf6 5. Qd3 e5 6. dxe5 Qa5 7. Bd2 Qxe5 8. O-O-O Nxe4 9. Qd8+ Kxd8 10. Bg5++ (10. Bg5++ Ke8 (10... Kc7 11.Bd8#) 11.Rd8#) 1-0
  • Though this was a rapid game, I think. Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 8:09
  • @BlindKungFuMaster: According to this link (chesshistory.com/winter/extra/retitartakower.html) it was an off-hand game, but not rapid. Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 16:25
  • What I was remembering, probably from the same source: " The term ‘lightning game’ was used on page 23 of The Chess Player’s Bedside Book by R. Bott and S. Morrison (London, 1966), but on what grounds?" Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 17:30
  • Tartakower played Kc7 and allowed the beautiful mate Bd8 instead of resigning.
    – Peter
    Commented Mar 31, 2015 at 8:15
  • @Peter Any source to document that Tatarkower played 10...Kc7 ?
    – Evargalo
    Commented Jan 2, 2019 at 9:40

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