I have neen playing a higher amount of online chess as opposed to club chess lately and something I have noticed is a significant increase in Bishop sacrifices to prevent kingside castling. Here is an example.

rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNBQKBNR w KQkq - 0 1
1. e4 e5 2. Bc4 Nf6 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. O-O Bc5 5. Bxf7+

The above is probably the most common instance I have come across of this "tactic" being used..Is sacrificing the minor piece really worth it? Is there name for this tactic, eg "Fianchetto"?

  • 5
    This looks completely unsound, as I don't see any compensation for white. What was the time control?
    – Akavall
    Commented Oct 4, 2020 at 1:33
  • It's called "Jerome".and it had a surge in popularity recently due to chess streamers picking it up out of joke. It is unsound.
    – B.Swan
    Commented Oct 4, 2020 at 18:55
  • 1
    @B.Swan No, the Jerome Gambit is 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+? and continues 4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+. The OP's line, where Bxf7+ is played after Black has played Nf6, is even more unsound than the Jerome Gambit.
    – bof
    Commented Oct 4, 2020 at 20:01
  • 2
    @bof You are right... So, Jerome Gambit Deferred? :)
    – B.Swan
    Commented Oct 4, 2020 at 21:04

2 Answers 2


Not worth it.

Tactic used by low rated players which might work against other low rated players but would fail to a halfway decent player.

Run the position through an engine of your choice and see what it says.

No official name but patzer fish rookie beginner could work.

Can not comment.
@David Bateman: If those ratings are online then they are barely getting out of the beginner rating class.

  • 3
    Thanks. Thats very much my thought. I am seeing this in the 1800 - 2300 bracket. It seems like a low 1k kind move which is why I really started taking notice of it. I ran through ChessBase and couldn't find any games with that sort of 'theme' just seems like something folks who dont know how to attack castled kings do.
    – Dheebs
    Commented Oct 4, 2020 at 0:50
  • Pretty much this answer but instead of checking with an engine, try to figure out the correct defense for Black by yourself
    – David
    Commented Oct 5, 2020 at 8:32

The reason bishops are sacrificed is that they are the least likely to be stopped from being sacrificed, compared to a knight or a pawn for whom the a6 / h6 takes 4 moves. The bishop sacrifice is usually not stopped from a direct threat to the king (except for the French Defence),

Another reason: a bishop sacrifice opens up the opponent's king more. Also your pawns in front of the opposing king when they are active and the opponent's pawns on the other side passive it can be successful because you have compensation.

Is sacrificing the minor piece really worth it?

As long as it will be possible to stop the attack without any damage, it is clearly not worth it. In the example above it's a really bad sacrifice. Your pawns are not threatening the king and neither side has completed development.


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