33

While I'm not sure exactly how "fēənˈketō" would be pronounced (I'm not a native English speaker), that's more correct as to the pronunciation of the "ch" (following the Italian pronunciation). The pronunciation written in English would be something like fee-ahn-keh-toh, with the accent on the third syllable (keh). I just found this website in which there ...


32

It means that white is down a rook, and up a pawn compared to black. So black has one more rook than white, and white has one more pawn than black


30

blundering a full piece or being a full piece down are typical expressions in English chess literature. With the little word "full", the author wants to make clear that the player has not only lost the piece, but that they also received no consolation material in return, i.e. one or two pawns. An alternative expression is "blundering a ...


28

They're connected knights. As the other answers said, this isn't typically that smart a thing for knights. OTOH, rooks are very often made stronger by connecting them (it allows them to thwart any queen intrusion). Thus you'll more often hear about it being “a good idea to connect rooks now”. But I think I've also heard the term used with knights. Just, ...


26

According to Wikipedia: In chess, the fianchetto (/ˌfiænˈtʃɛtoʊ/; Italian: [fjaŋˈketto] "little flank") is a pattern of development ... Hence English speakers pronounce the "ch" as in "chess" and Italian speakers as in "kettle". Which suggests that there is no "true, and proper, pronunciation".


25

The Bong-Cloud opening is a joke opening that is meant to give your opponent a chance, and also it is meant to show contempt for your opponent. You play it because you think you are much stronger than they are. It is, obviously, not a good opening. GM Hikaru Nakamura is one of the jokesters, who plays this from time to time. There are multiple YouTube videos ...


23

There are three general types of players: Positional, tactical, and universal, which is being adept and comfortable in both positional and tactical games. Tactical means that you love open positions that require a lot of calculation, and often include all-out attacks. Positional chess is generally slower, and you work to build small advantages by placing ...


21

Putting your king in check is not a legal move as you've realized. Of course, if Black has any OTHER legal moves he can and should play one of them! If a side TO MOVE does not have ANY legal moves, that would be a stalemate, not a checkmate (which is delivered only by the side making the check)


21

"Tabiya" is a word that came from Sanskrit and passed into Old Persian, and then to our languages. It means "battle array". The ancestors of chess, shatranj e chaturanga, had pieces with very slow movement (for example, our "Queen", at that time called General or Advisor, could move only one square diagonally). For this reason, the opening phase of a game ...


21

A sharp position is one where every move is critical and any mistake could be your last; in such positions basic principles take a back seat to calculation. The opposite of a sharp position is a calm position, where you have time to maneuver as you please and arrange your pieces as you want before initiating confrontation.


17

A dead draw is a position in which no player has any chance of winning. Sometimes erroneously used in a position where theoretically someone could win but both players believe it is so basic and simple that neither will make a fatal mistake so the other player would win.


17

In chess, "opening theory" or just "theory" means "established opening lines": usually lines that have been studied and judged to lead to more or less equal positions, and appear in books. It's unfortunate terminology since it matches neither the day-to-day meaning of the word (something that's contrasted to practice) nor the ...


16

A fortress in chess is a position in where the weaker side defends by making waiting moves, and where the stronger side cannot make any progress as long as the defender does not make a crazy move. A very well-known fortress position is the following: [fen "6k1/6p1/5r1p/8/Q7/8/7P/6K1 w - - 0 1"] It is impossible for white to make any progress if black just ...


16

I think of game time decisions as yin-yang of tactics vs strategy (or positional play). In that order, tactics are the move-by-move calculations with the aim of achieving material gains (or preventing material losses if you are defending). Positional considerations are your intellectual efforts that do not involve precise calculations, but rather have the ...


16

There is indeed such a word for so called "half-moves." The terminology used is the word ply. To speak of multiple ply, plies is used. One would refer to the move "e4" as the first ply of the game. An example demonstration of it can be seen at work in CSE's very own diagram viewer. Sometimes, a user wants to add a game to their post, but ...


16

As a chess composer, seeing most problems being called puzzles is rather frustrating. A while ago, I personally revamped the problem and puzzles tags. The problem tag says: Chess problems consist of a board position and a task. Most ask for a line of play that mates black in a set amount of moves, or a combination that results in a winning position. Many ...


15

I believe that the chess pieces are supposed to constitute an army - I'll try to give a breakdown of how each individual name evolved. Xianqi, or Chinese Chess, originally developed in India before spreading across the world. Xianqi is the Chinese interpretation of the ancient game, and the pieces do really sound like those that would be in an army - ...


15

I've seen the term "redundant knights". In general, redundant pieces are pieces can get in each other's way. Here's a quote I could find about the general principle, but not specifically about knights: Interestingly, two of Lasker’s other points were: • The principle of redundancy: Two pieces that move the same way on the same squares can easily ...


15

From the Wikipedia article on the Fried Liver, Italian way of cooking liver ("Fegatello" means to put the liver in a net and cook it over a fire, or, in modern times, in a pan. Here we can see a metaphor for what happens to Black’s king in this line: it is cooked like a "fegatello". Usually Black’s king is caught in the mating net and White ...


15

The word for one move by one player is "move". This is the term used in FIDE's laws of chess. The exception is when referring to the move counts in chess notation, where "move" commonly means one move by each player, and to disambiguate from that, the term "half-move" or "ply" is then used to clarify that only one move ...


15

There is no general rule in naming openings or opening lines in general or gambits. Sometimes it’s the inventor, sometimes the place they lived, they were born, they played the line the first time, and so on. To make it more complicated, openings can have different names in different languages. In German, the Petroff defence is named Russian defence, and ...


14

A tabiya is a main starting position for a given opening. It is several moves into the game, after the opening has been determined - usually development is more or less complete. Many games will reach the exact position that is labeled a tabiya, but there will be multiple options for a continuation from the tabiya. If you are striving to understand an ...


14

I believe Brian Towers and user58697 are correct, and the author wrote/meant pen instead of pin. The dictionary tells it's a small enclosure for animals, or an abbreviation for penitentiary, which seems more appropriate. Still, it's the first time I encounter this word in a chess setting, so it's not common and the confusion is understandable. While @...


14

I'd use the term you already mentioned, "rambling rook", for this (at least when it's a rook). Tim Krabbé claims to have invented it: If the term 'Rambling Rook' sounds unfamiliar, this could be because I invented it. In Russian it is beshenaya ladya, in Dutch dolle toren, both meaning 'crazy rook.' There is no English term, and I thought a little ...


14

I don't think "full piece" means anything beyond "piece" but "full" was added for emphasis. This is to highlight the magnitude of the blunder, since many blunders are smaller than a piece; for example, one can blunder a pawn or the Exchange (rook for knight or bishop), or trade a piece for a pawn or two. The commonly used terms to distinguish queen/rook vs ...


14

Another aspect of the phrase you provided is how English uses "up" and "down". A player is considered "up" if they have an advantage. Likewise, being "down" mean a player has the worse position or piece count. Because rooks are generally more valuable than pawns, whichever player still has the rook is in a better ...


13

According to wikipedia: En passant (from French: in passing) is a move in chess. As far as i can find, 'In passing' is the translation of the name of the move, however it is not actually spoken as 'en passant' is used instead. One explanation for the appearance of this term is that Lasker, the author of the book, accidentally translated the word. ...


12

The question of whether chess is a sport depends entirely on the context of the question. In certain situations, it may be useful to classify chess as a sport. For example, as you mention, in some schools chess is considered a sport because it matches the requirements of a sport in that context - an activity that pupils can engage in outside of academic ...


12

I had never heard the term, but such pawns are very important for their contribution to certain mating patterns, the most famous of which would be Damiano's mate, which was included in Damiano's 1512 book Questo libro e da imparare giocare a scachi et de li partiti. Here's an archetypal example: [FEN "5rk1/6pQ/6P1/8/8/8/8/8 w - - 1 1"]


12

What you are looking for is called "attraction". That is, you attract a piece to a specific square. One of the most famous types of attraction is seen in this example: [FEN "r1b2rk1/pp2pp1p/1qp3p1/4Q3/1n1N4/1P6/PBP2PPP/R4RK1 w - - 0 1"] 1. Qg7+ Kxg7 2. Nf5+ Kg8 3. Nh6# Here is a nice link with another example. This is also exactly a deflection since ...


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