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HANDBOOK OF CHESS.

CHAPTER I.

THE BOARD AND THE PIECES.

THE game of Chess is one of the most ancient and intellectual of pastimes. Without attempting anything like a history of its rise and progress, it may be mentioned that the honour of its invention has been claimed by various nations, and that it has ever been a favourite recreation with kings, warriors, statesmen, and philosophers. Though easily learned, the game of Chess must not be considered a mere frivolous amusement, for its combinations are so many and so complex, that even the highest mathematical judgment may be employed in their solution. As a wholesome mental exercise this noble game is without a rival; and as an innocent and amusing means of employing a leisure hour in the repertoire of home recreations, it stands undoubtedly first.

Without further preface, then—for in a little book like this a long dissertation on the origin of Chess would be impossible-we proceed to

acquaint the reader with the history and mystery of Chess.

The Game of Chess is played by two persons on a board of sixty-four squares, alternately coloured black and white, with sixteen pieces of opposite colours. The following is a representation of

[graphic][subsumed]

THE CHESS-BOARD WITH THE MEN PLACED IN ORDER. The chessmen consist of eight pieces and eight pawns on either side. The pieces consist of a King, Queen, two Rooks (or Castles), two Bishops, and two Knights. To each of these belongs a Pawn, which at the commencement of the game stands in front of its master.

It is not necessary that we should further specify the position of the pieces than to say, that

the Queen always stands on her own colour (white queen on a white square, black queen on a black square); the King at the right hand, and next them, on either side, the Bishops, Knights, and Rooks, as seen in the diagram. cho The King moves one square at a time,

e in any direction; and once in the course of the game is allowed a jump of two squares ; that is, when the move called CASTLING takes place. This I will explain presently. The King never leaves the board, and his person is sacred from arrest. A King cannot move next a King; and no piece or Pawn can move on to a square already occupied, except to take a man. The King always remains on the board, and cannot be taken like any other piece. We The QUEEN moves in lines in all direc

tions, backwards or forwards, from end to end, or side to side, or across any of the diag. onals, one or more squares at a time. In her own person she combines the moves of the Rook and the Bishop, but does not move like the Knight.

The Rooks (or Castles) move in 3 right lines, either up, down, or across the board, one or more squares at a time, back. wards or forwards, but never in a slanting direction. The Rook and King possess the privilege of castling, an operation I shall presently explain.

The BISHOPS move in diagonals,

ha each on its own colour, one or more squares at a time, backwards or forwards. On the King's third square upward, the Bishop commands eleven squares.

The KNIGHTS have a peculiar D) oblique move of their own. The Knight can move over another piece three squares at a time; that is, he leaps from the square he stands on-passes over another--and rests on the third. If he starts from a black square he will rest on a white, and vice verså. From its place in the diagram the King's Knight has three moves to the King's Bishop's third place, to the King's Castle's third, and to the place of the King's pawn; and thence, by a series of forward and sideway jumps, it has the power of passing on to every one of the sixty-four squares on the board. Of course the Queen's Knight possesses similar powers.

THE PAWNS move straight forward

one square at a time, except at the commencement of a game, when they have the privilege of moving two squares. But they capture the enemy diagonally. They are never allowed to retreat like the other pieces ; but if they can be pushed forward on to the last square of the opposite side, they may be changed for, or promoted to, any other working piece. Thus, you have two or more Queens, three or more Bishops, Castles, or Knights, in the course of a single game. The piece usually claimed for an advanced pawn, however, is the Queen; hence the move is called going to Queen. You will soon discover that on a proper handling of the pawns much of the success of the game depends; but of this anon. There is a move, too, peculiar to the pawns, which is little understood. Let me explain it. If a white pawn, say, has moved forward into the fifth square, and a black pawn, in its first move makes a jump of two squares, the latter passes the empty space or field of its opponent. Then the white pawn has the privilege

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