I have heard of different types of checkmates, but don't know how to do them. What kinds are there and how can I perform them? I recently found out that there are names for different types of checkmates from How do I learn to understand the middlegame?. It mentions:

  • Back Rank checkmate
  • Lolli’s checkmate
  • Epaulettes checkmate
  • Shepherd’s checkmate
  • Fool’s checkmate (fool’s mate or 2-move checkmate)
  • Scholar’s checkmate ( or 4-move checkmate)
  • Two Rooks checkmate
  • Mayet’s checkmate
  • Smothered checkmate
  • Anderssen’s checkmate
  • Pillsbury’s checkmate
  • The Arabian checkmate
  • Legal’s checkmate
  • Anastacia’s checkmate
  • Greco’s checkmate
  • Gueridon’s checkmate
  • Blackburne’s checkmate
  • Boden’s checkmate
  • Damiano’s checkmate

Out of all of those, I think I only know of the Scholar's Checkmate, which is a four-move checkmate (I will still want to know more about that one). The answer on that question in the link only mentioned them, but didn't explain them at all. Could someone explain these checkmates to me?

  • 1
    @Andrew♦ Good revision there. Commented Nov 9, 2015 at 1:49
  • 3
    I think that all of the listed patterns can be found on wikipedia.
    – Andrew
    Commented Nov 9, 2015 at 1:58
  • 2
    From my experience, people at chess clubs often don't know the names of these patterns, but they can instantly recognise them. Don't get caught up trying to remember the names, and just get a feel for the ideas behind each one. Many of them are similar.
    – mojo1mojo2
    Commented Nov 9, 2015 at 9:52

2 Answers 2


There aren't really different "types" of checkmates, the things you have listed are different patterns that are used to achieve checkmate.

Checkmate occurs when one player cannot play a move that can prevent their king from being captured. This signifies the end of the game.

A list of these different patterns can be found on Chess Tempo or Wikipedia. Each pattern has very good description on both websites, so you should take the time to understand exactly how they work if you are new.

In regards to how to do them, many of them are fairly complicated for new players. I'd recommend learning "basic" checkmates as white against a lone black king. Learn how to checkmate with 2 rooks, then queen+king, then rook+king, then bishop+queen. Overtime, your pattern recognition abilities will improve, and you will be able to understand the other more complicated checkmates.

  • Although this post is a bit old, I think a special mention about "Stalemate" (since it fits the definition in the answer "occurs when one player cannot play a move that can prevent their king from being captured") and how it is different from checkmate should be there Commented Mar 7, 2020 at 11:12

There are 3 books that might interest you:

  1. How to Beat Your Dad at Chess by Murray Chandler. Don't be put off by the title! It covers 50 checkmating patterns with a quiz at the back
  2. 1001 Deadly Checkmates by John Nunn is in a similar vein to the Dad book, with a forward by Murray Chandler, but a lot more emphasis on exercises
  3. The Art of Checkmate by Renaud and Kahn. Similar to the Dad book in naming the mates, showing examples and giving quizzes. This has been updated into algebraic notation and republished in February 2015

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