Chess Opening Theory/1. e4/1...e5/2. Qh5

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Parham Attack
Wayward Queen Attack
a b c d e f g h
8 a8 b8 c8 d8 e8 f8 g8 h8 8
7 a7 b7 c7 d7 e7 f7 g7 h7 7
6 a6 b6 c6 d6 e6 f6 g6 h6 6
5 a5 b5 c5 d5 e5 f5 g5 h5 5
4 a4 b4 c4 d4 e4 f4 g4 h4 4
3 a3 b3 c3 d3 e3 f3 g3 h3 3
2 a2 b2 c2 d2 e2 f2 g2 h2 2
1 a1 b1 c1 d1 e1 f1 g1 h1 1
a b c d e f g h
Position in Forsyth-Edwards Notation (FEN)
Moves: 1. e4 e5 2. Qh5

Wayward Queen Attack, Parham Attack[edit | edit source]

1. e4 e5 2. Qh5?![edit | edit source]

The Wayward Queen Attack or Kentucky Opening is a very aggressive move. It violates an opening principle of bringing the queen out early. However, Black has to be careful as White’s queen is placed on an aggressive square. The main purpose of 2. Qh5 is actually the resulting pressure on f7 after White plays 3. Bc4; after all, the f7 pawn is guarded only by the King and is considered Black’s weakest pawn at the beginning of the game.

The safest option for Black is to play 2…Nc6, which guards the e-pawn and prepares 3…g6.

Black can also try playing 2…Nf6 resulting in the Kiddie Countergambit. Black sacrifices her e-pawn for a lead in development and many tempos against White’s queen.

2…g6??, attacking the queen immediately, is not recommended as it simultaneously fails to protect the e-pawn and opens up the h8 rook, and White can win that rook by playing 3. Qxe5+!, winning a rook and a pawn.

Note that this position allows White’s quickest possible mate if Black plays 2...Ke7 (3. Qxe5#).

Theory table[edit | edit source]

For explanation of theory tables, see theory table and for notation, see algebraic notation..

1. e4 e5 2. Qh5

2 3 4 5 6

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References[edit | edit source]

  • Nunn's Chess Openings. 1999. John Nunn (Editor), Graham Burgess, John Emms, Joe Gallagher. ISBN 1-8574-4221-0.
  • Modern Chess Openings: MCO-14. 1999. Nick de Firmian, Walter Korn. ISBN 0-8129-3084-3.