Questions tagged [terminology]

Questions about the particular terminology used in chess

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6
votes
1answer
941 views

What is a pure checkmate?

Recently I heard something about pure checkmate. This is a special kind of checkmate where each of the squares around the king has to be covered by just one single piece. One simple example of this ...
4
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2answers
279 views

What should be defined as an en passant checkmate?

Is there a general consensus among composers, players, and/or organizations for what exactly defines an en passant checkmate, and is there any history to it? As far as I know, there are two ...
6
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2answers
671 views

Term for sacrifice that causes opponent to block an escape square?

A decoy or deflection typically lure an opponent's piece away from a square. What is it called when you sacrifice in order to lure/force an opponent to a certain square in order to prevent another ...
1
vote
1answer
107 views

Is prophylaxis a feature of the hypermodern school?

Wikipedia mentions prophylaxis in the article of hypermodernism in chess. But is it really a feature of the hypermodern school? I have not seen prophylaxis in any other book or article about ...
8
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1answer
1k views

When was the term 'Super Grandmaster' first used?

According to the following wiki link, The unofficial title, "Super Grandmaster", is often used by players to refer to those with a 2700+ rating to distinguish the most serious world ...
4
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1answer
176 views

Double Grob-Coca-cola Gambit?

I was using the opening explorer on Chess.com when I came upon the following line 1.g4 g5 2. f4 (Coca-cola gambit)!? How did this opening get its name? It sounds like Coca-cola walked up to Fide and ...
6
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4answers
360 views

Endgame Tablebases-What are they?

I've been reading and enjoying the site immensely. What is the "Endgame Tablebase"? I see it referenced frequently.
15
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2answers
41k views

What is the Bongcloud opening?

I have heard the Bongcloud opening mentioned on chess.com, but I have never heard of that. Is this a real opening, and if so, what is it?
7
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5answers
4k views

Is there a terminology for “the worst winning move”?

What do people call a move which maintains a winning position but is the worst among all such moves? For example, h8=N+ is such a move in the following game: [FEN "8/7P/6k1/8/8/8/B1K5/8 w - - 0 1&...
2
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1answer
82 views

Cocking the gun tactical motif (preparing a discovered attack)

There is a tactical motif I call "cocking the gun" which I have never seen explicitly mentioned. It happens when you prepare a discovered attack. See the following board. Is there an ...
5
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2answers
814 views

Is there any other notation system other than algebraic notation?

Other than the current coordinate notations used in chess, are there any other notations that anybody knows about? I am looking for anything that does not employ the coordinate system like naming all ...
0
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4answers
773 views

What is perfect play?

What exactly is perfect play? Can there can be multiple perfect plays, which sounds quite contradictory? If perfect play is known for all openings then why would a player play anything other than that?...
8
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5answers
1k views

Is there a word to count one moving by one player?

Is there a word to count one moving by one player? For example, the following series of moves: e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 is counted as three moves. But if I want to denote "e4" as a unit ...
2
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1answer
132 views

How does Magnus create opportunities for his opponents to go wrong?

I have heard this statement many times, but I don't understand it. What does it mean exactly?
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2answers
91 views

What are the rapid and blitz forms of chess?

I have no clue-I am a recreational player who wants to join FIDE tournaments.
8
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2answers
343 views

Question on chess commentary in written form

I'm new to English chess notation and have never read or heard chess commentary in a broadcast or publication form. I'm trying to decipher the following commentary ICGA's footnote to caption: ACM CCC,...
3
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1answer
130 views

Does the pawn's initial double square move have a special name?

Does the pawn's initial double square move have a special name, akin to how special capturing move that the pawn has is called en passant?
4
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1answer
166 views

What is the correct name for a part of a chessboard: 'square' or 'cell'?

I play shogi (Japanese chess) and there is a word "マス" to call a cell of a square lattice not only used in shogi and chess. As far as I have read the article about chess in Wikipedia, it seems that "...
1
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4answers
352 views

Why is it called a draw?

There's no information as to why it's called a draw. Some of my students start to take out a pencil and paper and literally draw in the middle of the game. Why is it called a draw?
7
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12answers
3k views

What is the English maxim for “Rather losing a material / piece, than losing a tempo / an initiative”?

Chess, Xiangqi (Chinese Chess) and Go all highly value the tempo/initiative. The Chinese saying "宁失一子,不失一先" literally means It is better to lose material/piece, than a tempo/initiative. (宁=...
2
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1answer
172 views

What is a “dual” in chess problems, such as the Babson task?

I’ve read up on Babson tasks, and they mention that all known tasks are not perfect because they are duals. I’m not sure what this means exactly. What precisely is a “dual” in chess problems?
10
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3answers
825 views

Help needed to find a Swedish opening

It appears that openings are named after almost any country or city in the world. Spanish opening, Italian game, French defense, Hungarian gambit, London system and so on. Because I am from Sweden I ...
0
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2answers
82 views

Identifying “big pawn” bishops

I use to trade my bishop pairs for opponent’s knight pair most of the time. But since my recent peak of interest in the game, I have been doing studying and learning. Thus, the bishop is one of my ...
27
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6answers
4k views

How is “fianchetto” really pronounced?

I have heard "fianchetto" for four decades now, and I have always pronounced it "fēənˈCHetō", but I have heard many people also pronounce it "fēənˈketō". It is of Italian origin, so I am wondering if ...
5
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2answers
619 views

What is the definition of an “outpost”?

The Wikipedia definition of an "outpost" is this: “A position on the chess board where a knight is defended by a pawn from its same side.” Does it have to be a knight?
11
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2answers
1k views

What is a fortress in chess?

Throughout the 2016 World Championship match, analysts have made many references to the term "fortress". What does it mean, and how can I use it to my advantage?
12
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2answers
760 views

Did any authors ever try to adopt Hans Kmoch's pawn structure terminology?

In response to an earlier question, I mentioned the 1959 book Pawn Power in Chess by IM Hans Kmoch. One of the book's most well-known aspects it that it introduced a glut of less-than-useful ...
13
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1answer
466 views

Does Boris Gelfand share his surname with a chess piece?

Boris Gelfand was just narrowly edged out by Anand in their match's rapid tiebreaks, and I thought I'd ask an oddball question related to him. The bishop chess piece is known by several different ...
5
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3answers
410 views

Chess strategy versus positional chess

If one master writes a book on chess strategy (example here) and another writes a book on positional chess (example here), are they writing more or less on the same subject? Do other major chess ...
2
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1answer
184 views

What is the “Gufeld Bishop”?

I have another question I am going to ask and answer. The other day, I was watching a chess24 video, and GM Jan Gustafsson mentioned the “Gufeld Bishop”. What is the “Gufeld Bishop”?
13
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1answer
3k views

What is a “tornado” in chess?

I am going to ask and answer this question since I played in one for the first time in almost 40 years yesterday, and because I find it surprising that no one has asked this previously. So, "what is ...
8
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4answers
3k views

What is it called when opposite colored pawns up against each other?

When a white pawn and a black pawn are touching on a file, what is it called?
4
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1answer
657 views

What do DTM, DTZ, DTC, DTR, DTZ50, and DTZR mean?

I need help clarifying the abbreviations and acronyms used in endgame tablebases. Just what do DTM, DTZ, DTC, DTR, DTZ50, DTZR mean?
2
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3answers
312 views

What does 6 and 2 going mean?

I am watching an annotated chess game, and the narration goes like this: The game I am about to show you was played in the last round of an open tournament in Bad Weise, Germany. My score was 6 and ...
2
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1answer
76 views

What is the 'combustion point' of a game? This was in an upvoted answer

Saw an answer and it had been upvoted. Person answering had a large rep on stack. The term used that was not explained is: 'Combustion Point' (of a game) My question is just what does 'combustion ...
6
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6answers
561 views

How to determine if a position is open or closed in a “rigorous” fashion?

I am creating a set of chess positions to be used [as a data set] for a project. It's based on supervised machine learning, but I need to have labeled data (see more italicized text below) before any ...
5
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4answers
389 views

En Passant vs In Passing

In Lasker's Manual of Chess (written 1932 or earlier) I have just read the phrase 'in passing' referring to the en passant capture. I wonder if this expression is old-fashioned or still in use. ...
14
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10answers
19k views

Is chess a sport? If yes, then why?

Sometimes (e.g. at some schools) chess is considered to be a sport. Is chess a sport? I view sport as a physical activity. For instance, if a doctor asks you "Are you doing any sports?" would your ...
24
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5answers
4k views

What does it mean to play “positionally”, and how do you train that?

I often hear this term thrown around when people are analyzing chess, but I don't really know what it means. I assume it's a generic term that means to play defensively, or to set up for the future. ...
13
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3answers
3k views

What does it mean to call a line “sharp”?

I am a chess newbie and I was watching a video on four knights opening and the person was discussing another variation and he said that one is dramatic and quite sharp. From what I saw, it seems "...
5
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2answers
566 views

What is “Chronological Order” in chess?

I have heard about "chronological order" in chess. But I don't know what it is exactly. Can someone tell me what this is?
10
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3answers
28k views

Is it technically a checkmate if the king is not in check, but all moves will result in check?

In other words, after white's move, black king is not in check. It is now black's move, but any move that black could make results in check. Is this a checkmate? Is there a chess term for this ...
13
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1answer
3k views

How did the Fried Liver Attack get its name?

Many chess openings get their name from a player who invented it and/or played it and/or documented it. Place names are also frequently used, denoting where an opening was first played or became ...
8
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4answers
892 views

What common patterns should I look for in chess?

When I started learning, I had lots of games where I lost lots of material through not being familiar with these sneaky attacks. I am talking about these: There are many more (two minor pieces being ...
5
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2answers
135 views

Definition of Soundness

What exactly does it mean for a gambit to be unsound? I see this term being used a lot but I have yet to come across a precise definition. Is it enough for white to lose the advantage that comes ...
20
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2answers
45k views

Why are the corner pieces referred to as “rooks” in English?

Various sources like those quoted in Wikipedia say that it's a mistake, or old-fashioned, to refer to rooks as "castles". Why is this, though? Other languages generally refer to these pieces as "...
4
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2answers
349 views

Is there a name for fork-protected pieces?

Sometimes the reason a piece should not be captured isn’t the recapture, but rather the threat of a fork because the capturing piece would find itself in just the wrong spot. The 1926 game between ...
17
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3answers
4k views

Term for checking piece whose opponent daren't capture it

What if any, is the term for a piece whose owner gets a draw by keeping up a relentless series of checks with it -- a paradox being that even if this player puts it en prise, the opponent daren't ...
2
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1answer
86 views

Annotations to Fischer vs Sherwin,1957

I have a Russian translation of Bobby Fischer's My 60 Memorable Games. In the Game 1 (http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=1008366) in the annotations given after Black's 4. ...Ng8-f6 the ...
5
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1answer
214 views

Can these chess terms be used interchangeably?

I am confused by the usage of the following chess terms: 'positional advantage', 'initiative', 'attack', 'pressure', 'aggressive/active moves' and 'play/counterplay'. Do they mean the same thing? Can ...