According to Wikipedia, one of the conditions of castling is:

The king and the rook must be on the same rank (Schiller 2003:19).

This is because of a loophole that would occur otherwise:

Without this additional restriction, it would be possible to promote a. pawn on the e-file to a rook and then castle vertically across the board (as long as the other conditions are met). This way of castling was "discovered" by Max Pam and used by Tim Krabbé in a chess puzzle before the FIDE rules were amended in 1972 to disallow it. See Chess Curiosities by Krabbé.

I understand this rule like this: Only the two original rooks (not promoted rooks) can partake in castling. Is there any loophole in this understanding of mine?

  • 3
    "Is there any loophole in this understand of mine?" - No
    – Brian Towers
    Feb 21, 2020 at 10:22
  • 1
    @BrianTowers : Thanks for confirming.
    – 123iamking
    Feb 21, 2020 at 10:30
  • 2
    @123iamking Frankly, your description is much easier to understand in the context of why this needs technical clarification. Feb 21, 2020 at 10:33
  • In orthodox chess, there are no loopholes. Only if we go into problems/variants are there issues, where fairy conditions like Einstein Chess (pieces demote upon moving) or certain variants of Circé (pieces are immediately reborn when they are captured) allow interesting loopholes.
    – Remellion
    Feb 21, 2020 at 13:08

1 Answer 1


No. You got it right.

The King can only castle if the K and R is on its original square and each has never moved, the king is not in check, and the king does not move through a check, and it is your move so you can move.

I remember that puzzle. Guy at worked showed me a mate in one. Which was impossible. I finally guessed he was a true patzer and thought you really could castle with a promoted rook on the king file. So I did that and got the puzzle right.

It was hard to conceive of castling that way but the rules got fixed to make sure it would never happen. As if it could happen in a real game and not a puzzle-problem.

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