Chess is a two-player strategy board game played on a chessboard, a checkered gameboard with 64 squares arranged in an 8×8 grid. The game is played by millions of people worldwide. Chess is believed to be derived from the Indian game chaturanga some time before the 7th century. Chaturanga is the ancestor of the Eastern strategy games xiangqi and shogi. Chess reached Europe by the 9th century, due to the Umayyad conquest of Hispania; the pieces assumed their current powers in Spain in the late 15th century with the introduction of "Mad Queen Chess". Play does not involve hidden information; each player begins with 16 pieces: one king, one queen, two rooks, two knights, two bishops, eight pawns. Each of the six piece types moves differently, with the most powerful being the queen and the least powerful the pawn; the objective is to checkmate the opponent's king by placing it under an inescapable threat of capture. To this end, a player's pieces are used to attack and capture the opponent's pieces, while supporting each other.
During the game, play involves making exchanges of one piece for an opponent's similar piece, but finding and engineering opportunities to trade advantageously, or to get a better position. In addition to checkmate, a player wins the game if the opponent runs out of time. There are several ways that a game can end in a draw; the first recognized World Chess Champion, Wilhelm Steinitz, claimed his title in 1886. Since 1948, the World Championship has been regulated by the Fédération Internationale des Échecs, the game's international governing body. FIDE awards life-time master titles to skilled players, the highest of, grandmaster. Many national chess organizations have a title system of their own. FIDE organizes the Women's World Championship, the World Junior Championship, the World Senior Championship, the Blitz and Rapid World Championships, the Chess Olympiad, a popular competition among international teams. FIDE is a member of the International Olympic Committee, which can be considered as a recognition of chess as a sport.
Several national sporting bodies recognize chess as a sport. Chess was included in 2010 Asian Games. There is a Correspondence Chess World Championship and a World Computer Chess Championship. Online chess has opened professional competition to a wide and varied group of players. Since the second half of the 20th century, chess engines have been programmed to play chess with increasing success, to the point where the strongest personal computers play at a higher level than the best human players. Since the 1990s, computer analysis has contributed to chess theory in the endgame; the IBM computer Deep Blue was the first machine to overcome a reigning World Chess Champion in a match when it defeated Garry Kasparov in 1997. The rise of strong chess engines runnable on hand-held devices has led to increasing concerns about cheating during tournaments. There are many variants of chess that utilize pieces, or boards. One of these, Chess960, incorporates standard rules but employs 960 different possible starting positions, thus negating any advantage in opening preparation.
Chess960 has gained widespread popularity as well as some FIDE recognition. The rules of chess are published by chess's international governing body, in its Handbook. Rules published by national governing bodies, or by unaffiliated chess organizations, commercial publishers, etc. may differ. FIDE's rules were most revised in 2017. Chess is played on a square board of eight columns; the 64 squares are referred to as light and dark squares. The chessboard is placed with a light square at the right-hand end of the rank nearest to each player. By convention, the game pieces are divided into white and black sets, the players are referred to as White and Black, respectively; each player begins the game with 16 pieces of the specified color, consisting of one king, one queen, two rooks, two bishops, two knights, eight pawns. The pieces are set out as shown in the diagram and photo, with each queen on a square of its own color. In competitive games, the colors are allocated by the organizers; the player with the white pieces moves first.
After the first move, players alternate turns. Pieces are moved to either an unoccupied square or one occupied by an opponent's piece, captured and removed from play. With the sole exception of en passant, all pieces capture by moving to the square that the opponent's piece occupies. A player may not make any move that would leave the player's own king under attack. A player cannot "pass" a turn. If the player to move has no legal move, the game is over; each piece has its own way of moving. In the diagrams, the dots mark the squares to which the piece can move if there are no intervening piece of either color; the king moves one square in any direction. The king has
Emanuel Lasker was a German chess player and philosopher, World Chess Champion for 27 years, from 1894 to 1921, the longest reign of any recognised World Chess Champion in history. In his prime, Lasker was one of the most dominant champions, he is still regarded as one of the strongest players ever, his contemporaries used to say that Lasker used a "psychological" approach to the game, that he sometimes deliberately played inferior moves to confuse opponents. Recent analysis, indicates that he was ahead of his time and used a more flexible approach than his contemporaries, which mystified many of them. Lasker disagreed with many of them, he published chess magazines and five chess books, but players and commentators found it difficult to draw lessons from his methods. Lasker made contributions to the development of other games, he was a first-class contract bridge player and wrote about bridge, Go, his own invention, Lasca. His books about games presented a problem, still considered notable in the mathematical analysis of card games.
Lasker was a research mathematician, known for his contributions to commutative algebra, which included proving the primary decomposition of the ideals of polynomial rings. His philosophical works and a drama that he co-wrote, received little attention. Emanuel Lasker was born on December 1868 at Berlinchen in Neumark, the son of a Jewish cantor. At the age of eleven he was sent to Berlin to study mathematics, where he lived with his brother Berthold, eight years his senior, who taught him how to play chess. Berthold was among the world's top ten players in the early 1890s. To supplement their income Emanuel Lasker played chess and card games for small stakes at the Café Kaiserhof. Lasker shot up through the chess rankings in 1889, when he won the Café Kaiserhof's annual Winter tournament 1888/89 and the Hauptturnier A at the sixth DSB Congress held in Breslau. Winning the Hauptturnier earned Lasker the title of "master"; the candidates were divided into two groups of ten. The top four in each group competed in a final.
Lasker won his section, with 2½ points more than his nearest rival. However, scores were reset to 0 for the final. With two rounds to go, Lasker trailed Viennese amateur von Feierfeil, by 1 1/2 points. Lasker won both of his final games, while von Feierfeil lost in the penultimate round and drew in the last round; the two players were now tied. Lasker garnered the master title; this thus launched his chess career. Lasker finished second in an international tournament at Amsterdam, ahead of some well-known masters, including Isidore Gunsberg. In 1890 he finished third in Graz shared first prize with his brother Berthold in a tournament in Berlin. In spring 1892, he won two tournaments in London, the second and stronger of these without losing a game. At New York City 1893, he won all thirteen games, one of the few times in chess history that a player has achieved a perfect score in a significant tournament, his record in matches was impressive: at Berlin in 1890 he drew a short play-off match against his brother Berthold.
Chessmetrics calculates that Emanuel Lasker became the world's strongest player in mid-1890, that he was in the top ten from the beginning of his recorded career in 1889. In 1892 Lasker founded the first of his chess magazines, The London Chess Fortnightly, published from August 15, 1892 to July 30, 1893. In the second quarter of 1893 there was a gap of ten weeks between issues because of problems with the printer. Shortly after its last issue Lasker traveled to the US. Lasker challenged Siegbert Tarrasch, who had won three consecutive strong international tournaments, to a match. Tarrasch haughtily declined, stating that Lasker should first prove his mettle by attempting to win one or two major international events. Rebuffed by Tarrasch, Lasker challenged the reigning World Champion Wilhelm Steinitz to a match for the title. Lasker wanted to play for US $5,000 a side and a match was agreed at stakes of $3,000 a side, but Steinitz agreed to a series of reductions when Lasker found it difficult to raise the money.
The final figure was $2,000, less than for some of Steinitz' earlier matches. Although this was publicly praised as an act of sportsmanship on Steinitz' part, Steinitz may have needed the money; the match was played in 1894, at venues in New York and Montreal. Steinitz had declared he would win without doubt, so it came as a shock when Lasker won the first game. Steinitz responded by winning the second, maintained the balance through the sixth. However, Lasker won all the games from the seventh to the eleventh, a
The knight is a piece in the game of chess, representing a knight. It is represented by a horse's head and neck; each player starts with two knights, which begin on the row closest to the player, between the rooks and bishops. Colloquially it is sometimes referred to as a "horse", the translation of the piece's name in several languages; some languages refer to it as the "jumper", reflecting the knight's ability to move over pieces in its way: Polish skoczek, Danish/Norwegian springer, German Springer, Luxembourgish Sprénger, Slovene skakač. In Sicilian it is called sceccu, a slang term for a donkey, derived from the Arabic sheikh, who during the Islamic period rode from village to village on donkeys collecting taxes; the knight move is unusual among chess pieces. It moves to a square, two squares away horizontally and one square vertically, or two squares vertically and one square horizontally; the complete move therefore looks like the letter "L". Unlike all other standard chess pieces, the knight can "jump over" all other pieces to its destination square.
It captures an enemy piece by replacing it on its square. The knight's ability to "jump over" other pieces means it tends to be at its most powerful in closed positions, in contrast to a bishop; the knight moves alternately to dark squares. A knight should always be close to where the action is, meaning it is best used on areas of the board where the opponent's pieces are clustered or close together. Pieces are more powerful if placed near the center of the board, but this is true for a knight. A knight on the edge of the board attacks only three or four squares and a knight in the corner only two. Moreover, it takes more moves for an uncentralized knight to switch operation to the opposite side of the board than an uncentralized bishop, rook, or queen; the mnemonic phrases "A knight on the rim is grim" or "A knight on the rim is dim" are used in chess instruction to reflect this principle. The knight is the only piece. For the reasons above, the best square for the initial move of each knight is one towards the center.
Knights are brought into play sooner than the bishops and much sooner than the rooks and the queen. Because of its move pattern, the knight is well-suited for executing a fork. In the numbered diagram, the numbers represent how many moves it takes for a knight starting from f5 to reach each square on the chessboard. A knight is equal in strength and value to a bishop; the bishop is restricted to only half the squares on the board. Since the knight can jump over pieces which obstruct other pieces, it is more valuable when the board is more crowded. A knight is best when it has a "support point" or outpost – a sheltered square where it can be positioned to exert its strength remotely. On the fourth rank a knight is comparable in power to a bishop, on the fifth it is superior to the bishop, on the sixth rank it can be a decisive advantage; this is assuming. A knight is worst positioned on the edge of the board. Enemy pawns are effective at harassing knights because a pawn attacking a knight is not itself attacked by the knight.
For this reason, a knight is most effective when placed in a weakness in the opponent's pawn structure, i.e. a square which cannot be attacked by enemy pawns. In the diagram at left, White's knight on d5 is powerful – more powerful than Black's bishop on g7. Whereas two bishops cover each other's weaknesses, two knights tend not to cooperate with each other as efficiently; as such, a pair of bishops is considered better than a pair of knights. World Champion José Raúl Capablanca considered that a queen and a knight is a better combination than a queen and a bishop. However, Glenn Flear found no game of Capablanca's that supported his statement and statistics do not support the statement either. In an endgame without other pieces or pawns, two knights have a better chance against a queen than two bishops or a bishop and a knight. Compared to a bishop, a knight is not as good in an endgame; the knight's potential range of movement is more limited, which makes it less suitable in endgames with pawns on both sides of the board.
However, this limitation is less important in endgames with pawns on only one side of the board. Knights are superior to bishops in an endgame. Furthermore, knights have the advantage of being able to control squares of either color, unlike a lone bishop. Nonetheless, a disadvantage of the knight is that by itself it cannot lose a move to put the opponent in zugzwang, while a bishop can. In this position, if the knight is on a white square and it is White's turn to move, White cannot win. If the knight was on a black square and it was Black's turn to move, White cannot win. In the other two cases, White would win. If instead of the knight, White had a bishop on either color of square, White would win with either side to move. At the end of the game, if one side has only a king and a knight while the other side has only a king, the game is a draw since a checkmate is impossible; when a bare king faces a king and two knights, checkmate can occur only if the opponent commits a blunder by moving his king to a square where it may be checkmated on the next
A bishop is a piece in the board game of chess. Each player begins the game with two bishops. One starts between the king's knight and the king, the other between the queen's knight and the queen; the starting squares are c1 and f1 for White's bishops, c8 and f8 for Black's bishops. The bishop is limited to diagonal movement. Bishops, like all other pieces except the knight, cannot jump over other pieces. A bishop captures by occupying the square; the bishops may be differentiated according to which wing they begin on, i.e. the king's bishop and queen's bishop. As a consequence of its diagonal movement, each bishop always remains on either the white or black squares, so it is common to refer to them as light-squared or dark-squared bishops. A rook is worth about two pawns more than a bishop; the bishop has access to only half of the squares on the board, whereas all squares of the board are accessible to the rook. On an empty board, a rook always attacks fourteen squares, whereas a bishop attacks no more than thirteen and sometimes as few as seven, depending on how near it is to the center.
A king and rook can force checkmate against a lone king, while a king and bishop cannot. In general bishops are equal in strength to knights, but depending on the game situation either may have a distinct advantage. Less experienced players tend to underrate the bishop compared to the knight because the knight can reach all squares and is more adept at forking. More experienced players understand the power of the bishop. Bishops gain in relative strength towards the endgame as more pieces are captured and more open lines become available on which they can operate. A bishop can influence both wings whereas a knight is less capable of doing so. In an open endgame, a pair of bishops is decidedly superior to either a bishop and a knight, or two knights. A player possessing a pair of bishops has a strategic weapon in the form of a long-term threat to trade down to an advantageous endgame. Two bishops and king can force checkmate against a lone king. A bishop and knight can with far greater difficulty than two bishops.
In certain positions a bishop can by itself lose a move. The bishop is capable of pinning a piece, while the knight can do neither. A bishop can in some situations hinder a knight from moving. In these situations, the bishop is said to be "dominating" the knight. On the other hand, in the opening and middlegame a bishop may be hemmed in by pawns of both players, thus be inferior to a knight which can jump over them. A knight check cannot be blocked but a bishop check can. Furthermore, on a crowded board a knight has many tactical opportunities to fork two enemy pieces. A bishop can fork. One such example occurs in the position illustrated, which arises from the Ruy Lopez: 1.e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 b5 6. Bb3 Be7?! 7.d4 d6 8.c3 Bg4 9.h3!? Bxf3 10. Qxf3 exd4 11. Qg3 g6 12. Bh6! In the middlegame, a player with only one bishop should place friendly pawns on squares of the color that the bishop cannot move to; this allows the player to control squares of both colors, allows the bishop to move among the pawns, helps fix enemy pawns on squares on which they can be attacked by the bishop.
Such a bishop is referred to as a "good" bishop. Conversely, a bishop, impeded by friendly pawns is referred to as a "bad bishop"; the black light-squared bishop in the French Defense is a notorious example of this concept. However, a "bad" bishop need not always be a weakness if it is outside its own pawn chains. In addition, having a "bad" bishop may be advantageous in an opposite-colored bishops endgame. If the bad bishop is passively placed, it may serve a useful defensive function. Although the black pawns obstruct the white bishop on e2, it has many more attacking possibilities, thus is a good bishop vis-à-vis Black's bad bishop. Black resigned after another ten moves. A bishop may be fianchettoed, for example after moving the g2 pawn to g3 and the bishop on f1 to g2; this can form a strong defense for the castled king on g1 and the bishop can exert strong pressure on the long diagonal. A fianchettoed bishop should not be given up since the resulting holes in the pawn formation may prove to be serious weaknesses if the king has castled on that side of the board.
There are nonetheless some modern opening lines where a fianchettoed bishop is given up for a knight in order to double the opponent's pawns, for example 1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7 3. Nc3 c5 4.d5 Bxc3+!? 5.bxc3 f5, a sharp line originated by Roman Dzindzichashvili. Giving up a fianchettoed queen bishop for a knight is less problematic. For example, in Karpov–Browne, San Antonio 1972, after 1.c4 c5 2.b3 Nf6 3. Bb2 g6?!, Karpov gave up his fianchettoed bishop with 4. Bxf6! exf6 5. Nc3, doubling Black's pawns and giving him a hole on d5. An endgame in which each player has only one bishop, one controlling the dark squares and the other the light, will result in a draw if one player has a pawn or sometimes two more than the other; the players tend to gain control of squares of opposite colors, a deadlock results. In endgames with same-colored bish
The queen is the most powerful piece in the game of chess, able to move any number of squares vertically, horizontally or diagonally. Each player starts the game with one queen, placed in the middle of the first rank next to the king; because the queen is the strongest piece, a pawn is promoted to a queen in the vast majority of cases. In the game shatranj, the ancestor of chess that included only male figures, the closest thing to the queen was the ferz, a weak piece only able to move or capture one step diagonally and not at all in any other direction; the modern chess queen gained power in the 15th century. In most languages the piece is known as "queen" or "lady". Asian and Eastern European languages tend to refer to it as minister or advisor. In Polish it is known as the hetman – the name of a major historical military-political office, while in Estonian it is called lipp; the white queen starts on d1, while the black queen starts on d8. With the chessboard oriented the white queen starts on a white square and the black queen starts on a black square—thus the mnemonics "queen gets her color", "queen on color", or "the dress matches the shoes ".
The queen can be moved any number of unoccupied squares in a straight line vertically, horizontally, or diagonally, thus combining the moves of the rook and bishop. The queen captures by occupying the square. Although both players start with one queen each, a pawn can be promoted to any of several types of pieces, including a queen, when the pawn is moved to the player's furthest rank; such a queen created by promotion can be an additional queen, or if the player's queen has been captured, a replacement queen. Pawn promotion to a queen is colloquially called queening, by far the most common type of piece a pawn is promoted to due to the relative power of a queen. Ordinarily, the queen is stronger than a rook and a bishop together, while less strong than two rooks, it is always disadvantageous to exchange the queen for a single piece other than the enemy's queen. The reason that the queen is stronger than a combination of a rook and bishop though they control the same number of squares, is twofold.
First, the queen is more mobile than the rook and the bishop, as the entire power of the queen can be transferred to another location in one move, while transferring the entire firepower of a rook and bishop requires two moves, the bishop always being restricted to squares of one color. Second, the queen is not hampered by the bishop's inability to control squares of the opposite color to the square on which it stands. A factor in favor of the rook and bishop is that they can attack a square twice, while a queen can only do so once. However, experience has shown that this factor is less significant than the points favoring the queen; the queen is strongest when the board is open, when the enemy king is poorly defended, or when there are loose pieces in the enemy camp. Because of her long range and ability to move in multiple directions, the queen is well equipped to execute forks. Compared to other long range pieces, the queen is stronger in closed positions. Beginners develop the queen early in the game, hoping to plunder the enemy position and deliver an early checkmate such as Scholar's mate.
This can expose the harassed queen to attacks by weaker pieces causing the player to lose time. Experienced players prefer to delay developing the queen, instead develop minor pieces in the opening. Early queen attacks are rare in high level chess, but there are some openings with early queen development that are used by high level players. For example, the Scandinavian Defense, which features queen moves by Black on the second and third moves is considered sound, has been played at the world championship level; some less common examples have been observed in high-level games. The Danvers Opening, characterized as a beginner's opening, has been played by the strong American grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura. A queen exchange marks the beginning of the endgame, but there are queen endgames, sometimes queens are exchanged in the opening, long before the endgame. A common goal in the endgame is to promote a pawn to a queen; as the queen has the largest range and mobility and king vs. lone king is an easy win when compared to some other basic mates.
A queen sacrifice is the deliberate sacrifice of a queen in order to gain a more favorable tactical position. The queen was the counsellor or prime minister or vizier, its only move was one square diagonally. Around 1300 CE its move was enhanced to allow it to move two squares with jump onto a same-colored square for its first move, to help the sides to come into contact sooner; the fers changed into the queen over time. The first surviving mention of this piece as a queen or similar was "regina" in the Einsiedeln Poem, written in Latin around 997 and preserved in a monastery at Einsiedeln in Switzerland; some surviving early medieval pieces depict the piece as a queen, the word fers became grammatically feminized in several languages, for example alferza in Spanish and fierce or fierge in French, before it was replaced with names such as reine or dame. The Carmina Burana refer to the queen as femina and coniunx, the name Amazon has sometimes been seen. In Russian it keeps its Persian name of ferz.
Promotion is a chess rule that requires a pawn that reaches its eighth rank to be replaced by the player's choice of a queen, rook, or bishop of the same color. The new piece replaces the pawn, as part of the same move; the choice of new piece is not limited to pieces captured, thus promotion can result in a player owning, for example, two or more queens despite starting the game with one. Pawn promotion, or the threat of it decides the result in an endgame. Since the queen is the most powerful piece, the vast majority of promotions are to a queen. Promotion to a queen is called queening. If the promoted piece is not physically available, FIDE rules state that the player should stop the game clock and summon the arbiter for the correct piece. Under US Chess Federation rules and in casual play, an upside-down rook may be used to designate a queen. Promotion to a queen is the most common. Underpromotion occurs more in chess problems than in practical play. In practical play, underpromotions are not extraordinarily so.
As the most powerful piece, the queen is the most desirable, but promotion to a different piece can be advantageous in certain situations. A promotion to knight is useful if the knight can give immediate check. A promotion to a rook is necessary to avoid a draw by immediate stalemate that would occur if the promotion was to a queen. Promotion to a bishop never occurs in practical play; the percentage of games with promotions can be misleading, because a player resigns when they see that they cannot stop their opponent from promoting a pawn. In the 2006 ChessBase database of 3,200,000 games, about 1.5% of the games include a promotion. In these games the proportions of promotions to each piece are approximately: This suggests that about 3% of all promotions are underpromotions; the frequency of significant underpromotions is, less than this. A player may promote to any piece they wish, regardless of whether or not such a piece has been captured. In theory, a player could have nine queens, ten knights, ten bishops or ten rooks, though these are improbable scenarios.
Some chess sets come with an extra queen of each color to use for promoted pawns. If an extra queen is unavailable, it is represented by an upside-down rook instead; the diagram from the game between Bobby Fischer and Tigran Petrosian in the 1959 Candidates Tournament shows a position in which each side has two queens. Four queens existed from move 37 until move 44. Few games were played with six queens. In the first game each side had three queens after move 58 until move 65; the game ended in a draw with a single queen on each side. In the second game both sides had three queens, but Black resigned, with a single queen on both sides; the ability to promote is the critical factor in endgames and thus is an important consideration in opening and middlegame strategy. All promotions occur in the endgame, but promotion in the middlegame does happen. Promotion occurs in the opening after one side makes a blunder, as in the Lasker trap, which features an underpromotion to a knight on move seven: 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 d4 4.e3?
Bb4+ 5. Bd2 dxe3! 6. Bxb4?? exf2+! 7. Ke2 fxg1=N+! Schlechter–Perlis, Karlsbad 1911 could have featured a promotion to queen on move 11: 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4.e3 Bf5 5. Qb3 Qb6 6.cxd5 Qxb3 7.axb3 Bxb1? 8.dxc6! Be4?? 9. Rxa7! Rxa7 10.c7 threatening both 11.cxb8=Q and 11.c8=Q. Perlis avoided the trap with 8... Nxc6!, losing more slowly. The British grandmaster Joe Gallagher pulled off a similar idea a half-move earlier in Terentiev–Gallagher, Liechtenstein Open 1990: 1.d4 Nf6 2. Bg5 Ne4 3. Bf4 c5 4.c3 Qb6 5. Qb3 cxd4 6. Qxb6 axb6 7. Bxb8? dxc3 8. Be5?? Rxa2! and now White could have resigned, since if 9. Rxa2, c2 promotes the c-pawn. Another example occurs after 1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Nf6 5. Ng3 h5 6. Bg5?! h4 7. Bxf6?? hxg3 8. Be5 Rxh2! 9. Rxh2 Qa5+! 10.c3 Qxe5+! 11.dxe5 gxh2, with the dual threat of 12...hxg1=Q and 12...h1=Q, as in Schuster–Carls, Bremen 1914 and NN–Torre, Mexico 1928. Note that 10. Qd2 would have been met by 10...exf2+! 11. Kd1 Qxd2+ 12. Kxd2 fxg1=Q rather than 10... Qxe5 11.dxe5 gxh2 12.
Nf3 h1=Q 13.0-0-0 with a strong attack. There are a few opening lines where each side gets a desperado pawn that goes on a capturing spree, resulting in each side queening a pawn in the opening. An example is seen in the position diagrammed, where play continued 10... bxc3 11. Exf6 cxb2 12. Fxg7 bxa1=Q 13. Gxh8=Q. Both players promoted by White's seventh move in Casper–Heckert: 1.e4 Nf6 2. Nc3 d5 3.e5 d4 4.exf6 dxc3 5.d4 cxb2 6.fxg7 bxa1=Q 7.gxh8=Q. The original idea was that a foot soldier that advanced all the way through the enemy lines was promoted to the lowest rank of officer. In the Middle Ages, the queen was much weaker than now, its only allowed move was one square diagonally.. When the queen and bishop got their new moves, chess was radically altered; when the fers became the queen
Checkmate is a game position in chess and other chess-like games in which a player's king is in check and there is no way to remove the threat. Checkmating the opponent wins the game. In chess, the king is never captured—the game ends as soon as the king is checkmated. In formal games, most players resign an lost game before being checkmated, it is considered bad etiquette to continue playing in a hopeless position. If a player is not in check but has no legal move it is stalemate, the game ends in a draw. A checkmating move is recorded in algebraic notation using the hash symbol "#", for example: 34. Qg7#. A checkmate may occur in as few as two moves on one side with all of the pieces still on the board, in a middlegame position, or after many moves with as few as three pieces in an endgame position; the term checkmate is, according to the Barnhart Etymological Dictionary, an alteration of the Persian phrase "shāh māt" which means "the King is helpless". Persian "māt" applies to the king but in Sanskrit "māta" pronounced "māt", applied to his kingdom "traversed, measured across, meted out" by his opponent.
Others maintain that it means "the King is dead", as chess reached Europe via the Islamic world, Arabic māta means "died" or "is dead". However, in Pashto, the word māt still exists, meaning "destroyed, broken". Moghadam traced the etymology of the word mate, it comes from a Persian verb mandan, meaning "to remain", cognate with the Latin word maneō and the Greek menō. It means "remained" in the sense of "abandoned" and the formal translation is "surprised", in the military sense of "ambushed". Sheikh is the Arabic word for the monarch. Players would announce "Sheikh". "Māt" is an Arabic adjective for dead "helpless", or "defeated". So the king is in mate when he is ambushed, at a loss, defeated, or abandoned to his fate. In modern Arabic, the word mate depicts a person who has died open-mouthed, staring and unresponsive; the words "stupefied" or "stunned" bear close correlation. So a possible alternative would be to interpret mate as "unable to respond". A king is mate means a king is unable to respond, which would correspond to there being no response that a player's king can make to their opponent's final move.
This interpretation is much closer to the original intent of the game being not to kill a king but to leave him with no viable response other than surrender, which better matches the origin story detailed in the Shahnameh. In modern parlance, the term checkmate is a metaphor for an strategic victory. In early Sanskrit chess, the king could be captured and this ended the game; the Persians introduced the idea of warning. This was done to avoid the accidental end of a game; the Persians added the additional rule that a king could not be moved into check or left in check. As a result, the king could not be captured, checkmate was the only decisive way of ending a game. Before about 1600, the game could be won by capturing all of the opponent's pieces, leaving just a bare king; this style of play is now called robado. In Medieval times, players began to consider it nobler to win by checkmate, so annihilation became a half-win for a while, until it was abandoned. Two major pieces can force checkmate on the edge of the board.
The process is to put the two pieces on adjacent ranks or files and force the king to the side of the board, where one piece keeps the king on the edge of the board while the other delivers checkmate. In the illustration, white checkmates by forcing the black king to one row at a time; the same process can be used to checkmate with two rooks, or with two queens. There are four fundamental checkmates when one side has only his king and the other side has only the minimum material needed to force checkmate, i.e. one queen, one rook, two bishops on opposite-colored squares, or a bishop and a knight. The king must help in accomplishing all of these checkmates. If the superior side has more material, checkmates are easier; the checkmate with the queen is the most common, easiest to achieve. It occurs after a pawn has queened. A checkmate with the rook is common, but a checkmate with the two bishops or with a bishop and knight occurs infrequently; the two bishop checkmate is easy to accomplish, but the bishop and knight checkmate is difficult and requires precision.
The first two diagrams show representatives of the basic checkmate positions with a queen, which can occur on any edge of the board. The exact position can vary from the diagram. In the first of the checkmate positions, the queen is directly in front of the opposing king and the white king is protecting its queen. In the second checkmate position, the kings are in opposition and the queen mates on the rank of the king. With the side with the queen to move, checkmate can be forced in at most ten moves from any starting position, with optimal play by both sides, but fewer moves are required. In positions in which a pawn has just promoted to a queen, at most nine moves are required. In the position diagrammed, White checkmates by confining the black king to a rectangle and shrinking the rectangle to force the king to the edge