History of Chess

In the game of chess, which of the following pieces can never move diagonally?

And the answer is: rook.

In the game of chess, each piece has its own rules of movement. A rook can move any number of vacant squares vertically or horizontally, but never diagonally.

Chess is an ancient game with an origin surrounded in controversy. While there is no real evidence for the game's existence prior to 6th century CE, pieces not unlike those used in the modern day game have been found and dated much earlier. Though these pieces have since been ruled members of different ancient games, their relation to what we know as chess remains a point of disagreement between historians even today.

Chess did not always resemble its modern form. As the game spread from its supposed beginnings in the Gupta Empire, the rules and pieces of chess evolved with it. From culture to culture came additions, amendments and changes to its form. For example, by the time reached China in 750 CE, the game had taken on new ranks and boundaries, such as a "river" between the 5th and 6th ranks. It wasn't until chess reached Europe that new forms of standardization began to take place. Check out some of the various forms of chess below:

Chinese chess (Xiangqi):

Photo credit: Culture Trip

Indian chess (Chaturuanga):

Photo credit: eSamskriti

Japanese chess (Shogi):

Photo credit: The Chess Variant Pages

Watch this Ted Talk to learn more about the history of chess:

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