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Think I've got it. Oh, that's rather pretty - I guess Levitt's book would file this under "symmetry". Nice use too of zugzwang.
Could you also start with the bishop on a7?
Yes, for the mirror image solution. This is a very neat composition!
And the solution is.....
1. Rf4 Bd4 2. Rb4 zugzwang, with 3. Rf3 or Rb3# depending on the reply.
And so it is. From Schachminiaturen, Leipzig 1902.I took it from Mating with two rooks and a knight which apears on the website of Kingston Chess Club.
What's the deal with three-movers then - if Black has a defence which forces White to mate in two but not three, is that a flaw?(not sure 1 Rf4 Bc3 is such a defence necessarily, though I don't see a mate in two exactly from here; just wondering)
It's not a flaw as far as I know, but I'm not really (i.e. not at all) a problemist. Comments welcomed from readers who are. And, indeed, readers who are not.
Just to add that this was composed by Shinkman, but appeared in a book by Blumenthal which you can find online at http://www.chessmaniac.com/chess_ebooks/online-chess-books4.htm.Blumenthal was also a celebrated playwright and drama critic (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oscar_Blumenthal) perhaps best remembered today for co-writing the play which eventually became the operetta White Horse Inn. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Im_Weissen_R%C3%B6ssl.
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