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


King's Movement

King Movement
King's Movement Diagram

Though not the most powerful piece on the board, the king is the most vital, for once he is lost the game is lost (more about this in the end game section).

As shown in the movement diagram, the king can only move one square in any direction (except in the case of the castle maneuver). There is an important restriction on his movement - he may not move into a position where he may be captured by an opposing piece. An interesting aspect of this rule is that the two kings may never stand next to each other or capture each other. However, kings may be, and often are, used to help checkmate the opposing king by guarding squares which the opponent might enter.

Strategy Note: Guard the king closely. His loss means loss of the game. He is typically not a good piece to use on offense, but will be a help in a carefully constructed defense. It is also wise to position the king so that he has a square to run to if attacked. For example, a king can easily be check-mated by standing behind a straight wall of unmoved pawns.

Castling with King and Rook
Want to Play Better Chess? Try out our e-course:
Better Chess in Ten Easy Lessons!