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The FIDE Laws of Chess cover over-the-board play.
The English text is the authentic version of the Laws of Chess,
which was adopted at the 71st FIDE Congress at Istanbul (Turkey) November
2000, coming into force on 1 July 2001.
In these Laws the words 'he', 'him' and 'his' include 'she' and
The Laws of Chess cannot cover all possible situations that may arise
during a game, nor can they regulate all administrative questions. Where
cases are not precisely regulated by an Article of the Laws, it should
be possible to reach a correct decision by studying analogous situations,
which are discussed in the Laws. The Laws assume that arbiters have
the necessary competence, sound judgement and absolute objectivity.
Too detailed a rule might deprive the arbiter of his freedom of judgement
and thus prevent him from finding the solution to a problem dictated
by fairness, logic and special factors.
FIDE appeals to all chess players and federations to accept this view.
A member federation is free to introduce more detailed rules provided
do not conflict in any way with the official FIDE Laws of Chess
are limited to the territory of the federation in question; and
are not valid for any FIDE match, championship or qualifying event,
or for a FIDE title or rating tournament.
The game of chess is played between two opponents who move their pieces
alternately on a square board called a 'chessboard'. The player with
the white pieces commences the game. A player is said to 'have the move',
when his opponent's move has been made.
The objective of each player is to place the opponent's king 'under
attack' in such a way that the opponent has no legal move which would
avoid the 'capture' of the king on the following move. The player who
achieves this goal is said to have 'checkmated' the opponent's king
and to have won the game. The opponent whose king has been checkmated
has lost the game.
If the position is such that neither player can possibly checkmate,
the game is drawn.
The chessboard is composed of an 8x8 grid of 64 equal squares alternately
light (the 'white' squares) and dark (the 'black' squares).
The chessboard is placed between the players in such a way that the
near corner square to the right of the player is white.
At the beginning of the game one player has 16 light-coloured pieces
(the 'white' pieces); the other has 16 dark-coloured pieces (the 'black'
pieces): These pieces are as follows:
The initial position of the pieces on the chessboard is as follows:
The eight vertical columns of squares are called 'files'. The eight
horizontal rows of squares are called ranks'. A straight line of squares
of the same colour, touching corner to corner, is called a 'diagonal'.
It is not permitted to move a piece to a square occupied by a piece
of the same colour. If a piece moves to a square occupied by an opponent's
piece the latter is captured and removed from the chessboard as part
of the same move. A piece is said to attack an opponent's piece if the
piece could make a capture on that square according to Articles 3.2
The bishop may move to any square along a diagonal on which it stands.
The rook may move to any square along the file or the rank on which
The queen may move to any square along the file, the rank or a diagonal
on which it stands.
When making these moves the bishop, rook or queen may not move over
any intervening pieces.
The knight may move to one of the squares nearest to that on which
it stands but not on the same rank, file or diagonal.
The pawn may move forward to the unoccupied square immediately in
front of it on the same file, or
on its first move the pawn may move as in (a); alternatively it may
advance two squares along the same file provided both squares are unoccupied,
the pawn may move to a square occupied by an opponent's piece, which
is diagonally in front of it on an adjacent file, capturing that piece.
A pawn attacking a square crossed by an opponent's pawn which has
advanced two squares in one move from its original square may capture
this opponent's pawn as though the latter had been moved only one square.
This capture may only be made on the move following this advance and
is called an 'en passant' capture.
When a pawn reaches the rank furthest from its starting position
it must be exchanged as part of the same move for a queen, rook, bishop
or knight of the same colour. The player's choice is not restricted
to pieces that have been captured previously. This exchange of a pawn
for another piece is called 'promotion' and the effect of the new piece
a. There are two different ways of moving the king, by:
moving to any adjoining square not attacked by one or more of the
The opponent's pieces are considered to attack a square, even if
such pieces cannot themselves move.
'castling'. This is a move of the king and either rook of the same
colour on the same rank, counting as a single move of the king and
executed as follows: the king is transferred from its original square
two squares towards the rook, then that rook is transferred to the
square the king has just crossed.
(1) Castling is illegal:
if the king has already moved, or
with a rook that has already moved
(2) Castling is prevented temporarily
if the square on which the king stands, or the square which it must
cross, or the square which it is to occupy, is attacked by one or
more of the opponent's pieces.
if there is any piece between the king and the rook with which castling
is to be effected.
Declaring a check is not obligatory.
No piece can be moved that will expose its own king to check or leave
its own king in check.
Each move must be made with one hand only.
Provided that he first expresses his intention (e.g. by saying "j'adoube"
or "I adjust"), the player having the move may adjust one or more pieces
on their squares.
Except as provided in Article 4.2, if the player having the move deliberately
touches on the chessboard
one or more of his own pieces, he must move the first piece touched
that can be moved , or
one or more of his opponent's pieces, he must capture the first piece
touched, which can be captured.
one piece of each colour, he must capture the opponent's piece with
his piece or, if this is illegal, move or capture the first piece touched
which can be moved or captured. If it is unclear, whether the player's
own piece or his opponent's was touched first, the player's own piece
shall be considered to have been touched before his opponent's.
If a player deliberately touches his king and rook he must castle
on that side if it is legal to do so.
If a player deliberately touches a rook and then his king he is not
allowed to castle on that side on that move and the situation shall
be governed by Article 4.3(a).
If a player, intending to castle, touches the king or king and rook
at the same time, but castling on that side is illegal, the player
must make another legal move with his king which may include castling
on the other side. If the king has no legal move, the player is free
to make any legal move.
If none of the pieces touched can be moved or captured, the player
may make any legal move.
A player forfeits his right to a claim against his opponent's violation
of Article 4.3 or 4.4, once he deliberately touches a piece.
When, as a legal move or part of a legal move, a piece has been released
on a square, it cannot then be moved to another square. The move is
considered to have been made when all the relevant requirements of Article
3 have been fulfilled.
The game is won by the player who has checkmated his opponent's king.
This immediately ends the game, provided that the move producing the
checkmate position was a legal move.
The game is won by the player whose opponent declares he resigns.
This immediately ends the game.
The game is drawn when the player to move has no legal move and his
king is not in check. The game is said to end in 'stalemate'. This
immediately ends the game, provided that the move producing the stalemate
position was legal.
The game is drawn when a position has arisen in which neither player
can checkmate the opponent's king with any series of legal moves. The
game is said to end in a 'dead position'. This immediately ends the
game, provided that the move producing the position was legal.
The game is drawn upon agreement between the two players during the
game. This immediately ends the game. (See Article 9.1)
The game may be drawn if any identical position is about to appear
or has appeared on the chessboard at least three times. (See Article
The game may be drawn if each player has made the last 50 consecutive
moves without the movement of any pawn and without the capture of any
piece. (See Article 9.3)
'Chess clock' means a clock with two time displays, connected to each
other in such a way that only one of them can run at one time.
'Clock' in the Laws of Chess means one of the two time displays.
'Flag fall' means the expiration of the allotted time for a player.
When using a chess clock, each player must make a minimum number
of moves or all moves in an allotted period of time and/or may be allocated
an additional amount of time with each move. All these must be specified
The time saved by a player during one period is added to his time
available for the next period, except in the 'time delay' mode.
In the time delay mode both players receive an allotted 'main thinking
time'. Each player also receives a 'fixed extra time' with every move.
The countdown of the main time only commences after the fixed time
has expired. Provided the player stops his clock before the expiration
of the fixed time, the main thinking time does not change, irrespective
of the proportion of the fixed time used.
Each time display has a 'flag'. Immediately after a flag falls, the
requirements of Article 6.2(a) must be checked.
Before the start of the game the arbiter decides where the chess clock
At the time determined for the start of the game the clock of the
player who has the white pieces is started.
If neither player is present initially, the player who has the white
pieces shall lose all the time that elapses until he arrives; unless
the rules of the competition specify or the arbiter decides otherwise.
Any player who arrives at the chessboard more than one hour after
the scheduled start of the session shall lose the game unless the rules
of the competition specify or the arbiter decides otherwise.
During the game each player, having made his move on the chessboard,
shall stop his own clock and start his opponent's clock. A player must
always be allowed to stop his clock. His move is not considered to
have been completed until he has done so, unless the move that was
made ends the game. (See Articles 5.1, and 5.2)
The time between making the move on the chessboard and stopping his
own clock and starting his opponent's clock is regarded as part of
the time allotted to the player.
A player must stop his clock with the same hand as that with which
he made his move. It is forbidden for a player to keep his finger on
the button or to 'hover' over it.
The players must handle the chess clock properly. It is forbidden
to punch it forcibly, to pick it up or to knock it over. Improper clock
handling shall be penalised in accordance with Article 13.4.
If a player is unable to use the clock, an assistant, who is acceptable
to the arbiter, may be provided by the player to perform this operation.
The clocks shall be adjusted by the arbiter in an equitable way.
A flag is considered to have fallen when the arbiter observes the
fact or when either player has made a valid claim to that effect.
Except where Articles 5.1 or one of the Articles 5.2 (a), (b) and
(c) apply, if a player does not complete the prescribed number of moves
in the allotted time, the game is lost by the player. However, the game
is drawn, if the position is such that the opponent cannot checkmate
the player's king by any possible series of legal moves, even with the
most unskilled counterplay.
Every indication given by the clocks is considered to be conclusive
in the absence of any evident defect. A chess clock with an evident
defect shall be replaced. The arbiter shall use his best judgement when
determining the times to be shown on the replacement chess clock.
If both flags have fallen and it is impossible to establish which
flag fell first, the game shall continue.
If the game needs to be interrupted, the arbiter shall stop the clocks.
A player may stop the clocks only in order to seek the arbiter's
assistance, for instance when promotion has taken place and the piece
required is not available.
The arbiter shall decide when the game is to be restarted in either
If a player stops the clocks in order to seek the arbiter's assistance,
the arbiter shall determine if the player had any valid reason for
doing so. If it is obvious that the player has no valid reason for
stopping the clocks, the player shall be penalised according to article
If an irregularity occurs and/or the pieces have to be restored to
a previous position, the arbiter shall use his best judgement to determine
the times to be shown on the clocks. He shall also, if necessary, adjust
the clock's move counter.
Screens, monitors, or demonstration boards showing the current position
on the chessboard, the moves and the number of moves made, and clocks
which also show the number of moves, are allowed in the playing hall.
However, the player may not make a claim based on information shown
in this manner.
If during a game it is found that the initial position of the pieces
was incorrect, the game shall be cancelled and a new game played.
If during a game it is found that the only error is that the chessboard
has been placed contrary to Article 2.1, the game continues but the
position reached must be transferred to a correctly placed chessboard.
If a game has begun with colours reversed, then it shall continue,
unless the arbiter rules otherwise.
If a player displaces one or more pieces, he shall re-establish the
correct position on his own time. If necessary, either the player or
his opponent shall stop the clocks and ask for the arbiter's assistance.
The arbiter may penalise the player who displaced the pieces
If during a game it is found that an illegal move has been made,
the position immediately before the irregularity shall be reinstated.
If the position immediately before the irregularity cannot be determined
the game shall continue from the last identifiable position prior to
the irregularity. The clocks shall be adjusted according to Article
6.14. Article 4.3 applies to the move replacing the illegal move. The
game shall then continue from this reinstated position.
After the action taken under Article 7.4(a), for the first two illegal
moves by a player the arbiter shall give two minutes extra time to
his opponent in each instance; for a third illegal move by the same
player, the arbiter shall declare the game lost by this player.
If during a game it is found that pieces have been displaced from
their squares, the position before the irregularity shall be re-instated.
If the position immediately before the irregularity cannot be identified,
the game shall continue from the last identifiable position prior to
the irregularity. The clocks shall be adjusted according to Article
6.14. The game shall then continue from this re-instated position.
In the course of play each player is required to record his own moves
and those of his opponent in the correct manner, move after move, as
clearly and legibly as possible, in the algebraic notation (Appendix
E), on the 'scoresheet' prescribed for the competition.
A player may reply to his opponent's move before recording it, if he
so wishes. He must record his previous move before making another. Both
players must record the offer of a draw on the scoresheet. (Appendix
If a player is unable to keep score, an amount of time, decided by the
arbiter, shall be deducted from his allotted time at the beginning of
The scoresheet shall be visible to the arbiter throughout the game.
The scoresheets are the property of the organisers of the event.
If a player has less than five minutes left on his clock and does
not have additional time of 30 seconds or more added with each move,
then he is not obliged to meet the requirements of Article 8.1. Immediately
after one flag has fallen the player must update his scoresheet completely
before moving a piece on the chessboard.
If neither player is required to keep score under Article 8.4, the
arbiter or an assistant should try to be present and keep score. In
this case, immediately after one flag has fallen, the arbiter shall
stop the clocks. Then both players shall update their scoresheets,
using the arbiter's or the opponent's scoresheet.
If only one player is not required to keep score under Article 8.4
he must, as soon as either flag has fallen, update his scoresheet completely
before moving a piece on the chessboard. Provided it is the player's
move, he may use his opponent's scoresheet, but must return it before
making a move
If no complete scoresheet is available, the players must reconstruct
the game on a second chessboard under the control of the arbiter or
an assistant. He shall first record the actual game position, clock
times and the number of moves made, if this information is available,
before reconstruction takes place.
If the scoresheets cannot be brought up to date showing that a player
has overstepped the allotted time, the next move made shall be considered
as the first of the following time period, unless there is evidence
that more moves have been made.
At the conclusion of the game both players shall sign both scoresheets,
indicating the result of the game. Even if incorrect, this result shall
stand, unless the arbiter decides otherwise.
A player wishing to offer a draw shall do so after having made a
move on the chessboard and before stopping his clock and starting the
opponent's clock. An offer at any other time during play is still valid,
but Article 12.5 must be considered. No conditions can be attached
to the offer. In both cases the offer cannot be withdrawn and remains
valid until the opponent accepts it, rejects it orally, rejects it
by touching a piece with the intention of moving or capturing it, or
the game is concluded in some other way.
The offer of a draw shall be noted by each player on his scoresheet
with a symbol (See Appendix E).
A claim of a draw under 9.2, 9.3 or 10.2 shall be considered to be
an offer of a draw.
The game is drawn, upon a correct claim by the player having the move,
when the same position, for at least the third time (not necessarily
by sequential repetition of moves)
is about to appear, if he first writes his move on his scoresheet
and declares to the arbiter his intention to make this move, or
has just appeared, and the player claiming the draw has the move.
Positions as in (a) and (b) are considered the same, if the same player
has the move, pieces of the same kind and colour occupy the same squares,
and the possible moves of all the pieces of both players are the same.
Positions are not the same if a pawn that could have been captured
en passant can no longer be captured or if the right to castle has been
changed temporarily or permanently.
The game is drawn, upon a correct claim by the player having the move,
he writes on his scoresheet, and declares to the arbiter his intention
to make a move which shall result in the last 50 moves having been
made by each player without the movement of any pawn and without the
capture of any piece, or
the last 50 consecutive moves have been made by each player without
the movement of any pawn and without the capture of any piece.
If the player makes a move without having claimed the draw he loses
the right to claim, as in Article 9.2 or 9.3, on that move.
If a player claims a draw as in Article 9.2 or 9.3, he shall immediately
stop both clocks. He is not allowed to withdraw his claim.
If the claim is found to be correct the game is immediately drawn.
If the claim is found to be incorrect, the arbiter shall add three
minutes to the opponent's remaining time. Additionally, if the claimant
has more than two minutes on his clock the arbiter shall deduct half
of the claimant's remaining time up to a maximum of three minutes.
If the claimant has more than one minute, but less than two minutes,
his remaining time shall be one minute. If the claimant has less than
one minute, the arbiter shall make no adjustment to the claimant's
clock. Then the game shall continue and the intended move must be made.
The game is drawn when a position is reached from which a checkmate
cannot occur by any possible series of legal moves, even with the most
unskilled play. This immediately ends the game.
A 'quickplay finish' is the last phase of a game, when all the remaining
moves must be made in a limited time.
If the player, having the move, has less than two minutes left on
his clock, he may claim a draw before his flag falls. He shall stop
the clocks and summon the arbiter.
If the arbiter agrees the opponent is making no effort to win the
game by normal means, or that it is not possible to win by normal means,
then he shall declare the game drawn. Otherwise he shall postpone his
decision or reject the claim.
If the arbiter postpones his decision, the opponent may be awarded
two extra minutes thinking time and the game shall continue in the
presence of an arbiter, if possible. The arbiter shall declare the
final result after a flag has fallen.
If the arbiter has rejected the claim, the opponent shall be awarded
two extra minutes thinking time.
The decision of the arbiter shall be final relating to 10.2 a, b,
If both flags have fallen and it is impossible to establish which
flag fell first the game is drawn.
Unless announced otherwise in advance, a player who wins his game,
or wins by forfeit, scores one point (1), a player who loses his game,
or forfeits scores no points (0) and a player who draws his game scores
a half point (1/2).
The players shall take no action that will bring the game of chess
During play the players are forbidden to make use of any notes, sources
of information, advice, or to analyse on another chessboard.
The scoresheet shall be used only for recording the moves, the times
of the clocks, the offer of a draw, and matters relating to a claim.
Players who have finished their games shall be considered to be spectators.
Players are not allowed to leave the 'playing venue' without permission
from the arbiter. The playing venue is defined as the playing area,
rest rooms, refreshment area, area set aside for smoking and other places
as designated by the arbiter.
The player having the move is not allowed to leave the playing area
without permission of the arbiter.
It is forbidden to distract or annoy the opponent in any manner whatsoever.
This includes unreasonable claims or offers of a draw.
Infraction of any part of the Articles 12.1 to 12.5 shall lead to
penalties in accordance with Article 13.4.
Persistent refusal by a player to comply with the Laws of Chess shall
be penalised by loss of the game. The arbiter shall decide the score
of the opponent.
If both players are found guilty according to Article 12.7, the game
shall be declared lost by both players.
The arbiter shall see that the Laws of Chess are strictly observed.
The arbiter shall act in the best interest of the competition. He
should ensure that a good playing environment is maintained and that
the players are not disturbed. He shall supervise the progress of the
The arbiter shall observe the games, especially when the players are
short of time, enforce decisions he has made and impose penalties on
players where appropriate.
The arbiter can apply one or more of the following penalties:
increasing the remaining time of the opponent,
reducing the remaining time of the offending player,
declaring the game to be lost,
reducing the points scored in a game by the offending party,
increasing the points scored in a game by the opponent to the maximum
available for that game,
expulsion from the event.
The arbiter may award either or both players additional time in the
event of external disturbance of the game.
The arbiter must not intervene in a game except in cases described
by the Laws of Chess. He shall not indicate the number of moves made,
except in applying Article 8.5, when at least one player has used all
his time. The arbiter shall refrain from informing a player that his
opponent has completed a move.
Spectators and players in other games are not to speak about or otherwise
interfere in a game. If necessary, the arbiter may expel offenders from
the playing venue.
Member federations may ask FIDE to give an official decision about
problems relating to the Laws of Chess.
If a game is not finished at the end of the time prescribed for play,
the arbiter shall require the player having the move to 'seal' that
move. The player must write his move in unambiguous notation on his
scoresheet, put his scoresheet and that of his opponent in an envelope,
seal the envelope and only then stop his clock without starting the
opponent's clock. Until he has stopped the clocks, the player retains
the right to change his sealed move. If, after being told by the arbiter
to seal his move, the player makes a move on the chessboard, he must
write that same move on his scoresheet as his sealed move.
A player having the move, who adjourns the game before the end of
the playing session, shall be considered to have sealed at the nominal
time for the end of the session , and his remaining time shall so be
The following shall be indicated upon the envelope:
the names of the players
the position immediately before the sealed move
the time used by each player
the name of the player who has sealed the move
the number of the sealed move
the offer of a draw, if the proposal is current.
the date, time and venue of resumption of play.
The arbiter shall check the accuracy of the information on the envelope
and is responsible for the safe-keeping of it.
If a player proposes a draw after his opponent has sealed his move,
the offer is valid until the opponent has accepted it or rejected it
as in Article 9.1.
Before the game is to be resumed, the position immediately before
the sealed move shall be set up on the chessboard, and the times used
by each player when the game was adjourned shall be indicated on the
If prior to the resumption the game is agreed drawn, or if one of
the players notifies the arbiter that he resigns, the game is concluded.
The envelope shall be opened only when the player who must reply to
the sealed move is present.
Except in the cases mentioned in Article 6.10 and 9.6, the game is
lost by a player whose recording of his sealed move
is ambiguous, or
is recorded such that its true significance is impossible to establish,
If, at the agreed resumption time
the player having to reply to the sealed move is present, the envelope
is opened, the sealed move made on the chessboard and his clock started.
the player having to reply to the sealed move is not present, his
clock shall be started. On his arrival, he may stop his clock and summon
the arbiter. The envelope is then opened and the sealed move made on
the chessboard. His clock is then restarted.
the player who sealed the move is not present, his opponent has the
right to record his reply on the scoresheet, seal his scoresheet in
a fresh envelope, stop his clock and start the absent player's clock
instead of making his reply in the normal manner. If so, the envelope
shall be handed to the arbiter for safe-keeping and opened on the absent
The player shall lose the game if he arrives at the chessboard more
than one hour late for the resumption of an adjourned game (unless the
rules of the competition or the arbiter decides otherwise).
However, if the player who made the sealed move is the late player,
the game is decided otherwise, if:
the absent player has won the game by virtue of the fact that the
sealed move is checkmate, or
the absent player has produced a drawn game by virtue of the fact
that the sealed move is stalemate, or a position as described in Article
9.6 has arisen on the chessboard, or
the player present at the chessboard has lost the game according
to Article 6.10.
If the envelope containing the sealed move is missing, the game shall
continue from the position, with the clock times recorded at the time
of adjournment. If the time used by each player cannot be re-established
the arbiter shall set the clocks. The player who sealed the move makes
the move he states he sealed on the chessboard.
If it is impossible to re-establish the position, the game is annulled
and a new game must be played.
If, upon resumption of the game, either player points out before making
his first move that the time used has been incorrectly indicated on
either clock, the error must be corrected. If the error is not then
established the game continues without correction unless the arbiter
feels that the consequences will be too severe.
The duration of each resumption session shall be controlled by the
arbiter's timepiece. The starting time and finishing time shall be announced
A 'Rapidplay game' is one where all the moves must be made in a fixed
time from 15 to 60 minutes for each player.
Play shall be governed by the FIDE Laws of Chess, except where they
are overridden by the following Laws of Rapidplay.
Players do not need to record the moves.
Once each player has completed three moves, no claim can be made regarding
incorrect piece placement, orientation of the chessboard or clock setting.
In case of reverse king and queen placement castling with this king
is not allowed.
The arbiter shall make a ruling according to Article 4 (The touched
piece), only if requested to do so by one or both players.
The player loses the right to claim according to Articles 7.2, 7.3
and 7.5 (Irregularities, illegal moves) once he has touched a piece
according to Article 4.3.
The flag is considered to have fallen when a player has made a valid
claim to that effect. The arbiter shall refrain from signalling a flag
To claim a win on time, the claimant must stop both clocks and notify
the arbiter. For the claim to be successful the claimant's flag must
remain up and his opponent's flag down after the clocks have been stopped.
If both flags have fallen, the game is drawn.
A 'Blitz game' is one where all the moves must be made in a fixed
time less than 15 minutes for each player.
Play shall be governed by the Rapidplay Laws as in Appendix B except
where they are overridden by the following Laws of Blitz.
An illegal move is completed once the opponent's clock has been started.
However, the opponent is entitled to claim a win before making his own
move. If the opponent cannot checkmate the player by any possible series
of legal moves with the most unskilled counterplay, then he is entitled
to claim a draw before making his own move. Once the opponent has made
his own move, an illegal move cannot be corrected
Article 10.2 does not apply.
Where games are played as in Article 10, a player may claim a draw
when he has less than two minutes left on his clock and before his flag
falls. This concludes the game.
He may claim on the basis
that his opponent cannot win by normal means, or
that his opponent has been making no effort to win by normal means.
In (a) the player must write down the final position and his opponent
In (b) the player must write down the final position and submit an up-to-date
scoresheet, which must be completed before play has ceased. The opponent
shall verify both the scoresheet and the final position.
The claim shall be referred to an arbiter whose decision shall be the
FIDE recognizes for its own tournaments and matches only one system
of notation, the Algebraic System, and recommends the use of this uniform
chess notation also for chess literature and periodicals. Scoresheets
using a notation system other than algebraic may not be used as evidence
in cases where normally the scoresheet of a player is used for that
purpose. An arbiter who observes that a player is using a notation system
other than the algebraic should warn the player about this requirement.
Description of the Algebraic System
Each piece is indicated by the first letter, a capital letter, of
its name. Example: K = king, Q = queen, R = rook, B = bishop, N = knight.
(In the case of the knight, for the sake of convenience, N is used.)
For the first letter of the name of a piece, each player is free to
use the first letter of the name which is commonly used in his country.
Examples: F = fou (French for bishop), L = loper (Dutch for bishop).
In printed periodicals, the use of figurines for the pieces is recommended.
Pawns are not indicated by their first letter, but are recognised
by the absence of such a letter. Examples: e5, d4, a5.
The eight files (from left to right for White and from right to left
for Black) are indicated by the small letters, a, b, c, d, e, f, g and
The eight ranks (from bottom to top for White and from top to bottom
for Black) are numbered 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8, respectively. Consequently,
in the initial position the white pieces and pawns are placed on the
first and second ranks; the black pieces and pawns on the eighth and
As a consequence of the previous rules, each of the sixty-four squares
is invariably indicated by a unique combination of a letter and a number.
Each move of a piece is indicated by (a) the first letter of the name
of the piece in question and (b) the square of arrival. There is no
hyphen between (a) and (b). Examples: Be5, Nf3, Rd1.
In the case of pawns, only the square of arrival is indicated. Examples:
e5, d4, a5.
When a piece makes a capture, an x is inserted between (a) the first
letter of the name of the piece in question and (b) the square of arrival.
Examples: Bxe5, Nxf3, Rxd1.
When a pawn makes a capture, the file of departure must be indicated,
then an x, then the square of arrival.. Examples: dxe5, gxf3, axb5.
In the case of an "en passant" capture, the square of arrival is given
as the square on which the capturing pawn finally rests and "e.p." is
appended to the notation. Example: exd6 e.p..
If two identical pieces can move to the same square, the piece that
is moved is indicated as follows:
If both pieces are on the same rank: by (a) the first letter of the
name of the piece, (b) the file of the square of departure, and (c)
the square of arrival.
If both pieces are on the same file: by (a) the first letter of the
name of the piece, (b) the rank of the square of departure, and (c)
the square of arrival.
If the pieces are on different ranks and files, method (1) is preferred.
In the case of capture, an x must be inserted between (b) and (c).
If a capture takes place on the square f3, the previous examples are
changed by the insertion of an x: (1) either Ngxf3 or Nexf3, (2) either
N5xf3 or N1xf3, (3) either Nhxf3 or Ndxf3, as the case may be.
If two pawns can capture the same piece or pawn of the opponent, the
pawn that is moved is indicated by (a) the letter of the file of departure,
(b) an x, (c) the square of arrival.
Example: If there are white pawns on squares c4 and e4 and a black
pawn or piece on the square d5, the notation for White's move is either
cxd5 or exd5, as the case may be.
In the case of the promotion of a pawn, the actual pawn move is indicated,
followed immediately by the first letter of the new piece. Examples:
d8Q, f8N, b1B, g1R.
The offer of a draw shall be marked as (=).
Sample game: 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Bd2 0-0 5.e4 d5 6.exd5 exd5
7.cxd5 Bxc3 8.Bxc3 Nxd5 9.Nf3 b6 10.Qb3 Nxc3 11.bxc3 c5 12.Be2 cxd4
13.Nxd4 Re8 14.0-0 Nd7 15.a4 Nc5 16.Qb4 Bb7 17.a5 ... etc.
Tournament directors shall have the power to adapt the following rules
according to local circumstances. In competitive chess between sighted
and visually handicapped players (legally blind) either player may demand
the use of two boards, the sighted players using a normal board, the
visually handicapped player using one specially constructed. The specially
constructed board must meet the following requirements:
at least 20 by 20 centimetres;
the black squares slightly raised;
a securing aperture in each square;
every piece provided with a peg that fits into the securing aperture;
pieces of Staunton design, the black pieces being specially marked.
The following regulations shall govern play:
The moves shall be announced clearly, repeated by the opponent and
executed on his board. To make the announcement as clear as possible,
the use of the following names is suggested instead of the corresponding
Ranks from white to black shall receive the German numbers:
Castling is announced "Lange Rochade" (German for long castling) and
"Kurze Rochade" (German for short castling).
The pieces bear the names: Koenig, Dame, Turm, Laeufer, Springer, Bauer.
On the visually handicapped player's board a piece shall be considered
"touched" when it has been taken out of the securing aperture..
A move shall be considered "executed" when:
in the case of a capture, the captured piece has been removed form
the board of the player whose turn it is to move;
a piece is placed into a different securing aperture;
the move has been announced.
Only then the opponent's clock shall be started.
As far as points 2 and 3 are concerned the normal rules are valid
for the sighted player.
A specially constructed chess clock for the visually handicapped
shall be admissible. It shall incorporate the following features:
A dial fitted with reinforced hands, with every five minutes marked
by one dot, and every 15 minutes by two raised dots.
A flag which can be easily felt. Care should be taken that the flag
is so arranged as to allow the player to feel the minute hand during
the last 5 minutes of the full hour.
The visually handicapped player must keep score of the game in Braille
or longhand or record the moves on a tape recorder.
A slip of the tongue in the announcement of a move must be corrected
immediately and before the clock of the opponent is started.
If during a game different positions should arise on the two boards,
they must be corrected with the assistance of the controller and by
consulting both players' game scores. If the two game scores correspond
with each other, the player who has written the correct move but executed
the wrong one must adjust his position to correspond with the move
on the game scores.
If, when such differences occur and the two game scores are found
to differ, the moves shall be retraced to the point where the two scores
agree and the controller shall readjust the clock accordingly.
The visually handicapped player shall have the right to make use
of an assistant who shall have any or al of the following duties:
Make either player's move on the board of the opponent.
Announce the moves of both players.
Keep the game score of the visually handicapped player and start
his opponent's clock, (keeping rule 3.c in mind).
Inform the visually handicapped player only at his request of the
number of moves completed and the time used up by both players.
Claim the game in cases where the time limit has been exceeded and
inform the controller when the sighted player has touched one of his
Carry out the necessary formalities in case the game is adjourned.
If the visually handicapped player does not make use of an assistant,
the sighted player may make use of one who shall carry out the duties
mentioned under point 9a and b.