Chess tournaments Chess strategy Computer chess Chess players FIDE Chess variants Chess rules and history

Gerald Abrahams

Gerald Abrahams in 1933
National Portrait Gallery, London

Gerald Abrahams (15 April 1907 - 15 March 1980) was an English chess player, author, and barrister.

Chess career

Abrahams Defence
a b c d e f g h
7 7
6 6
5 5
4 4
3 3
2 2
1 1
a b c d e f g h
Position after 10... Bb7
Moves 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 c6 4.Nf3 dxc4 5.a4 Bb4 6.e3 b5 7.Bd2 a5 8.axb5 Bxc3 9.Bxc3 cxb5 10.b3 Bb7
Named after Gerald Abrahams
Parent QGD Semi-Slav
Synonym(s) Abrahams-Noteboom Variation
Noteboom Variation

He is best known for the Abrahams Defence of the Semi-Slav, also known as the Abrahams-Noteboom Variation, or the Noteboom Variation:
1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 e6 4.Nf3 dxc4 5.e3 b5 6.a4 Bb4 7.Bd2 a5 8.axb5 Bxc3 9.Bxc3 cxb5 10.b3 Bb7 (ECO D31).

In 1933 he was third at Hastings in the British Championship, after Mir Sultan Khan and Theodore Tylor.

Abrahams was known as a strong blindfold player. In 1934 he took on four strong Irish players, playing blindfold, at the Belgravia Hotel in Belfast, winning two games and drawing two.

In the Anglo-Soviet radio match of 1946 he scored one win and one draw against Viacheslav Ragozin on board 10.


Abrahams was the author of several chess books, including Teach Yourself Chess (1948),The Chess Mind (1951), Handbook of Chess (1960), Technique in Chess (1961), Test Your Chess (1963), The Pan Book of Chess (1966), Not Only Chess (1974), and Brilliancies in Chess (1977).

Legal, Philosophical and Political

Political views

Abrahams was a Liberal in a period of low success for that party in Britain, the period from 1920-1960, and stood in the Sheffield Hallam constituency garnering 7.7% of the vote in 1945, after four national elections in which no Liberal had stood for the seat.