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The Sicilian defense is one of the most famous and played openings in chess. A quarter of all chess games start with 1.e4 c5, which is the first move that configures the opening.
The Sicilian comes from a remote era, the late 16th century when the Italian players Giulio Polerio and Giachino Greco started playing the Sicilian and left notes about it.
One of the most intriguing and played variants of the Sicilian defense is the Dragon. The moves that define the Dragon are 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6.
The first to call Dragon the variant was Fyodor Dus-Chotimirsky in 1901, who noticed a resemblance between Black's kingside pawn structure (pawns on d6, e7, f7, g6, and h7) and the stars of the Draco constellation.
But the Dragon is a mythological character, a beast similar to a gigantic reptile, half lizard and half dinosaur, that can breathe fire.
So many princes have tried to kill a dragon to set their loved princess free and, as in all the happy ending stories, they always succeded.
But in the recent literature and cinema, the dragons have become almost romantic figures that often help humans to save their world from more enormous menacing creatures.
In chess, all this romanticism and epics is not usually to be found on the board, but it's nice to think the player who adopts the Dragon as an ancient Knight, ready to battle to conquer the enemy's towers!
In this video series, GM Petrov will guide you through the main lines that arise after the first five moves in the Dragon, and what takes to play this somewhat daring variant.