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Rules of Chess

It is unclear as to the origin of chess, but history tells us chess began in India in the sixth century. Originally, it was a game for Kings and persons of nobility. The rules were slightly modified in the nineteenth century, but today in modern chess - basically, the rules are the same as centuries ago. The World Chess Organization, better known as FIDE, determines standard chess rules.


To access the official Rules of Chess


Two people play chess. There are thirty-two pieces - sixteen of one color, and sixteen of another, (normally black and white) and a board containing sixty-four squares. The board is set up opposite by color. The sixty-four squares can be occupied by one of the pieces or unoccupied. The object of the game is to checkmate the opponent's King.

Alternate moves are made by each player, with white (or the lighter color) making the first move. Typically, white will move a pawn to an unoccupied square.

The pawn can only move forward one or two squares. After the initial move, a pawn can only move forward one square at a time. By moving diagonally, the pawn can capture an enemy piece and by capturing his enemy piece is the only time the pawn can move diagonally. Pawns are the only piece that can promote to a more valuable piece, and, after reaching the eighth row and can promote to a Queen, Rook, Knight or Bishop.

Knights move in "L" shapes and are the only piece that can jump over another piece.

The Bishop moves diagonally anywhere on the board - even to the end of the board or until it meets an obstacle.

Rooks (also known as Castles) move in vertical or horizontal lines and can also reach the end of the board or until an obstacle blocks it or takes an opponent's piece.

The Queen can move to any unoccupied square on the board. She can take the enemy piece on an occupied square and can move diagonally, horizontally or vertical. The Queen is the protector of her King and a player will try to avoid his opponent capturing his Queen.

The King is the most valuable piece in chess. Kings normally try to stay protected by remaining on the eighth row while letting his army protect him. Should he venture from his throne, the King can move to any square on the board, but only one square at a time. If your opponent puts your King in check and you cannot find a way out, then your King is in checkmate, the game is over and your opponent has won the game.

Many compare Chess to ancient times when battles among Kings of different countries were fought. As they went to battle - the Pawns were foot soldiers. Dressed in shining armor, the Knights along with the Bishops were officers leading the generals, the Rooks. The mighty Queen moved only to protect her King.

Chess is one of the most popular games in the world. Chess is played competitively in chess clubs, homes, online, tournaments, correspondence and internet cafes all over the world.