Learn Chess Rules
Rules of Chess
General Rules
Chess Setup
Pawn Rules
Rook Movement
Knight Movement
Bishop Movement
Queen Movement
King Movement
Castling in Chess
Pawn en Passant
End Game in Chess

Read "The Little Pawn" a children's story about chess

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General Rules of Chess

The ultimate aim in the game of chess is to win by trapping your opponent's king. (This is called checkmate - more on this later.)

White is always first to move. Players take turns alternately moving one piece at a time (except in the case of the castle maneuver - more on this later). Movement is required. A player may not opt to skip his or her turn.

Each type of piece has its own method of movement (described in the following sections). A piece may be moved to another position. At the end of the move that piece may capture an opponent's piece. This is done by landing on the appropriate square with the moving piece and removing the defending piece from play. The removed piece is said to be "taken" or "captured".

With the exception of the knight, a piece may not move over or through any of the other pieces. In tournament play, once a piece has been touched by a player, it must be moved. In sandlot chess this rule is not always strictly adhered to. The game continues until one side or the other traps the opponent's king as described on the end of game page.

How to Set Up a Chess Board
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