My memory tells me that this quote:

Whenever someone says that he is better than me, I checkmate him

is from Capablanca. But I haven't been able to find it. So maybe it isn't from him or that quote never existed.

Do you know this or a very similar quote like this one and who said it?

  • 2
    According to a quick google and a facebook site it was Lasker saying "In chess, if anybody claims he is better than I, I can checkmate him" But I can't find a reliable source - and both forms may be a translation of the original German (which I don't speak). If it was said it sounds more like Lasker to me.
    – Ian Bush
    Nov 24, 2022 at 10:29
  • I tried too, no chance with some random backtranslations and googling... Nov 24, 2022 at 14:11

1 Answer 1


This is a quote by Emanuel Lasker. I found the source to be The Adventure of Chess, a 1950 book published by Edward Lasker. The quote given is:

In mathematics, if I find a new approach to a problem, another mathematician might claim that he has a better, more elegant solution. In chess, if anybody claims he is better than I, I can checkmate him

Edward says Emanuel once told him this.

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