(This puzzle series is continued here)

I found a book that must have been given to me thirty years ago called The Book of Extraordinary Chess Problems: 120 Unusual Puzzles by Stephen Addison. It's got some gems. I may have shared one or two here before. Here's one to warm up for the second one which I'll give later.

This is Puzzle 83 by T. R. Dawson from 1927:

self-stalemate (1)

"In a self-stalemate problem, White's objective is not to win, in the usual sense of the word, but to get himself stalemated. In the position given, White is to play and force Black to stalemate him in four moves."

Here is an interactive board for those who might want such a thing.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Can you just feed your bishop? I see a way on 3 moves. $\endgroup$
    – Shinjo
    Commented Sep 11, 2019 at 3:02
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ You cannot control what black will do so your solution must work against all legal black moves. $\endgroup$
    – Dr Xorile
    Commented Sep 11, 2019 at 5:02

1 Answer 1


Since we cannot force Black to ever take our bishop

we have to trap it ourselves


Bf5-xg4-h5 and g4.

I do not see a way for Black to interfere with this plan.

  • $\begingroup$ Great job! I've added the next one which is a little bit harder! $\endgroup$
    – Dr Xorile
    Commented Sep 11, 2019 at 22:27
  • $\begingroup$ The first move can be optimized a little to allow the game to end in two moves, should black choose to do so. $\endgroup$
    – Fax
    Commented Sep 12, 2019 at 9:31

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