365Chess lists the move order 1. d4 d5 2. e4 as Blackmar Gambit But the same move order is named as Blackmar-Diemer Gambit on chesstempo.]2. Which of these is more reliable (or correct)?

The reason for asking this is there is an ongoing PR on the Lichess Opening database repository which needs clarification.

2 Answers 2


To recap some history from the Wikipedia page on the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit:

Armand Blackmar was an American 19th century player who played the gambit 1.d4 d5 2.e4 dxe4 3.f3, which was referred to later as the "Blackmar Gambit". It's not very good as black has 3...e5!.

Then later Von Popiel introduced 3.Nc3, with the idea 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5, and analyzing 3.Nc3 e5 which was called the "Lemberger Counter-Gambit".

Then Diemer took both ideas and introduced 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.f3, when 4...e5 isn't very good as 5.dxe5 hits the knight. That's the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit.

So what is the answer to "which one is more reliable (or correct)"?

In my opinion, strictly speaking 1.d4 d5 2.e4 does not have a name. The name depends on what happens after.

In practical use I guess chess players would call it Blackmar-Diemer Gambit, but that goes hand in hand with the fact that it would be expected to continue 1.d4 d5 2.e4 dxe4 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.f3 if it's played at all these days.

But if you want names to be correct in a way, then I think it would be best not to give the position after 1.d5 d5 2.e4 a name . After all, Black can just as well answer 2...c6 (Caro-Kann) or 2...e6 (French), and the game would at no point have been a Blackmar or Blackmar-Diemer gambit.

  • interesting take. i was wondering if there ever was a gambit 1.e4 d5 2. d4 that had a name
    – cmgchess
    Jun 29, 2022 at 18:40
  • @cmgchess: an alternative answer could look at opening books that treat the line, and see if they call 1.d4 d5 2.e4 the Blackmar-Diemer gambit already. I consider recently printed books the main authority on opening names. The line is probably treated in 1.d4 d5 repertoire books for black, but unfortunately I don't have any such books. Jun 29, 2022 at 19:27
  • @Savage47 unfortunately there is no official database for opening names. however i also believe blackmar diemer should be the standard name. if d4 d5 e4 doesnt have a name im pretty sure someone might have come up with a d4 against the scandinavian and call it some gambit. regarding the last point on transpositions can happen even further for example d4 d5 e4 de4 Nc3 Nf6 Bg5 e6 Ne4 is still french
    – cmgchess
    Jul 1, 2022 at 8:14

There isn't a difference. I've only ever heard Blackmar-Diemer my entire life.

However, since Diemer is credited with creating the line with 3. Nc3. I could see someone making a distinction between 3. f3 and 3. Nc3. However, that's not common at all.

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