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Yasser Seirawan, International Grand Master
with Jeremy Silman


An Introduction to the Moves,
Strategies, and Philosophy of Chess
Srom the US.A.?s #1?Ranked Chess Player



Yasser Setrawan,

International Grand Master
with Jeremy Silman

Tempus Books of Microsoft Press

A Division of Microsoft Corporation

One Microsoft Way, Redmond, Washington 98052-6399

Copyright © 1990 by Yasser Seirawan

All rights reserved. No part of the contents of this book may be reproduced or transmit-
ted in any form or by any means without the written permission of the publisher.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Seirawan, Yasser, 1960-
Play winning chess : an introduction to the moves, strategies,
and philosophy of chess from the U.S.A.?s number one ranked chess
player / Yasser Seirawan with Jeremy Silman.
p. cm.
Includes index.
ISBN 1-55615-271-X
1.Chess. I. Silman, Jeremy. II. Title.
GV1446.S45 1990
794,1?2?dc20 90-42736

Printed and bound in the United States of America.
Distributed to the book trade in Canada by General Publishing Company, Ltd.

The Tempus Books logo is a trademark and Tempus® is a registered trademark of
Microsoft Corporation. Tempus Books is an imprint of Microsoft Press.

The photographs in Chapters Two through Five are from A Picture History of Chess by
Fred Wilson, courtesy of Dover Publications, Inc.

Acquisitions Editor: Dean Holmes Project Supervisor: Sally Brunsman
Editing and Production: Online Press Inc.


To Min, Lin, and Kit

for all your port.




The Evolution of Chess


The First Principle: Force

The Second Principle: Time
The Third Principle: Space

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


Annotated Games

The Four Principles and You

Photo Album


Answers to Quizzes and Tests



Thanks are due to the many people who made this book possible. Special
thanks to Jeremy Silman and his wife, Gwen, for long hours beyond the
call of duty. To Jonathan Berry, Larry Sivitz, and Yvette Nagel for their
frustratingly accurate editing work. To my brother Daniel Seirawan, who
helped keep the work going in my many absences on the tournament
circuit. Finally, to all the folks at Microsoft and Online Press for their
support. You were all great. Thanks.

As a lifelong lover of books and all things chess, I?ve often had the good
fortune to pick up a book that has made my spirits soar. One such book
is a first edition of Practical Chess Grammar, or An Introduction to the
Royal Game of Chess by W.S. Kenny, which was published in London
in 1818.

My motives for writing this book for beginning chess players are

exactly the same as those expressed by Kenny in his book:

Of all pastimes, it has been generally allowed by all who have had least
insight into the game, that Chess is the most noble, as well as most
fascinating: Kings and warriors have studied it, the former to establish
laws, and the latter to plan engagements in the field; the mathematician
has diligently examined its positions, to discover the solution of prob-
lems; and writers on education have concurred in recommending the
cultivation of this pleasing exercise of the mind: at the same time, many
are deterred from acquiring a knowledge of the game, owing to a false
idea that it requires so mathematical a genius as to be suitable only for
a Newton or a Euclid. In order to remove this false impression, the
author of the present work offers to the learners of this pleasing amuse-
ment an insight into the nature of the game of Chess....

How nice it is to know that the same understandings and misunderstand-
ings existed then as they do now.

The purpose of this book is to invite you, dear reader, into the
incredible world of chess. Did you know that most countries consider
chess a sport? And that in the Soviet Union, chess is the most popular
national pastime? The two largest sports associations in the world are the
IOC (International Olympic Committee) and FIFA (Fédération Internatio-
nale de Footbal Association?here, footbal refers to soccer). The third is
the FIDE (Fédération Internationale des Echecs), the international chess


Chess is played around the globe by millions of enthusiasts. Unlike
other sports, chess is constant. Whether on the beaches of Brazil, be-
neath the Great Wall of China, or at aTexas barbecue, the game is played
the same?same movements, same rules. Chess has a language of its
own, and since I began playing chess, I?ve made dozens of friends,
communicating with them through the pieces and squares.

?Because the necessary equipment is inexpensive, chess has been
called the most democratic of games. It crosses many boundaries: race,
class, caste, sex, culture, religion, and so on. It is played by people from
all walks of life. And it is played by those who can?t walk. My first teacher,
David Chapman, was a paraplegic. Blind singer and pianist Ray Charles
admits that chess is his passion. You don?t have to be 7 feet tall, as quick
as Carl Lewis, or as strong as Mike Tyson to play chess. All you have to
do is think.

When most people learn to play chess, they usually memorize the
movements of the pieces and then spend years pummeling away at each
other with little rhyme and even less reason. Though I will show you how
each piece leaps around, what its favorite foods are, and what it likes to
do on holidays, the real purpose of this book is to teach you the four major
principles of my Seirawan method: force, time, space, and pawn structure.
Each is easy to understand and each is a weapon that will enable you to
defeat most anyone you challenge to a game.

After a general introduction to the game of chess, I explain each of
the four principles in its own chapter. But you will find much more in
these pages. Annotated games illustrate each principle with examples,
and entire games allow you to see how the principles fit together. I
suggest that you read with a chessboard set up in front of you so that you
can play through these examples and turn theory into immediate practice.
For those of you who want to measure your progress, pop quizzes allow
you to check your understanding of specific concepts, and tests at the end


of the chapters give you experience in putting the concepts together.
(You'll find answers to the quizzes and the tests at the end of the book.)

I want this book to be fun to read in addition to being instructive. For
that reason, I?ve included highlights of chess history and profiles of some
of the interesting?and quirky!? people who have played major roles in
the development of the game.

Throughout the book, I offer psychological hints on ways to approach
both the game and your opponent. People who play chess are inexorably
changed. Their powers of concentration, reasoning, and perception are
all heightened. Because planning and purposefulness go hand in hand,
people who play chess become more responsible and disciplined.

Let me be the first to congratulate you on buying this book. You
obviously want to hone your thinking skills by learning to play chess.
This book offers you an introduction to the game that will both entertain
you and transform you into a veritable gladiator of the chessboard.

Yasser Seirawan
Seattle, Washington


The Evolution of

e know that chess existed in India at the beginning of the 7th
Wes and we have evidence that a form of chess existed

in central Asia in the 1st century. Some people claim that the
game might date back as far as the 15th century B.C. Nobody knows
exactly how old chess is.

From India, chess quickly spread to Persia and thence to Arabia,
where powerful rulers patronized good players in the same manner that
European nobility would later patronize musicians and artists. Chess first
came to Europe when the Moors conquered Spain in the 8th century.
Within a century or two, chess was being played throughout Europe,
including Russia, spread by either soldiers or traders.

Whereas the countries of East Asia adapted the rules of the game and
the board to local customs, Europe adopted the Muslim form of chess
and played it for six centuries without change. Then the game changed
dramatically, turning chess from a stodgy game of slow advances into a
game of lightning strikes and constant action. You'll learn more about
this change when we talk about the way the Queen moves.

In Europe, chess was played mostly by people in religious orders and
royal courts. Not until the 19th century were clubs founded and tourna
ments organized, thereby giving chess a wider following. Soon thereafter,

a World Champion was crowned, and professional chess players began


to appear for the first time. Chess literature began to proliferate as
ordinary people came to love the game. Today, chess is played in virtually
every country in the world. With tens of thousands of competitions and
hundreds of magazines, chess is the world?s most popular board game
and one of the most beloved of all games.

Why Play Chess?

You would be foolish indeed if you played chess simply to win. You can
always find opponents who are weaker than you are to ensure that you
win game after game. But what would be the point? You would become
bored, your game wouldn?t improve, and you?d miss out on the fun of
constantly learning more about chess. You should always seek out oppo-
nents equal or superior to yourself. You will certainly lose your share of
games, but your victories will be sweeter and the lessons from the losses
will strengthen your play.

I play chess because it enables me to engage in a physically safe but
psychologically strenuous battle in which I pit my wits against those of
my opponent. Complex strategies that include vicious attacks and subtle
defenses take me beyond the thrill of competition and into the realms of
the creative process, of art. Each game demands an ordered mind and
deep concentration, and can result not only in a deeply satisfying victory
on the chessboard, but also in an improvement in my daily life due to the
mental focus that playing chess develops in me.

This anonymous chess saying nicely sums up the reasons why most
of us play chess:

Chess, like love, like music, has the power to make men happy.
The Evolution of Chess


Young or old, black or white, male or female, jock or couch potato, cook
or computer programmer?everyone can learn how to play chess and
know the satisfaction of unleashing their creative and combative potential
at the chessboard. Chess is in many ways a great equalizer. Having said
that, I have to acknowledge that, perplexingly, chess is a great bastion of
male chauvinism.

Women in Chess

Unlike other sports where physical prowess determines the outcome,
you would think that chess would allow men and women to compete on
an equal level. Shockingly, males dominate the sport of chess. There are
no women among the world?s top 100 players. The Women?s World
Champion, Maya Chiburdanidze, has a numerical rating of 2500, com-
pared with a rating of 2800 for Garry Kasparov, the World Champion.
Professional chess players consider a Grandmaster to be a ?class? better
than a Grandmaster with 50 fewer rating points. What makes Kasparov
six ?classes? better than Chiburdanidze? I don?t know. I can only say that
so complete is male domination of the chess world that very few women
have earned the Grandmaster title. In an insult to women everywhere,
FIDE simply lowered the performance level required for women to earn
titles, thereby adding a new twist to the mysterious world of chess. (FIDE
is an acronym for Fédération Internationale des Echecs, the international
chess federation.) Women can now earn Female Grandmaster (FGM) and
Female International Master (FIM) titles.

Bowing to tradition, in this book I refer to all chess players as he. To
those readers who might find the exclusive use of this pronoun offensive,
I apologize. It reflects the current reality of the chess world. I encourage
female chess players everywhere to change that reality.


Necessary Equipment
The Chessboard

The chessboard is a square, checkered board of 64 alternately colored
squares, 8 from top to bottom and 8 from side to side. The squares can
be any size.

The board can be made of virtually any material. The more expensive,
wooden boards are suitable for use at home, whereas the folding vinyl or
plastic boards are perfect for carrying around. If no other board is
available, you can easily make one from cloth. Failing that, you can always
draw one on the floor, though other members of your household may not
approve of this solution.

Putting Color into the Game

Throughout the history of chess, the 8 x 8 board has been the standard
in almost every country. However, the squares were not differentiated by
color in the early years of the game. A European innovation in the 11th
century added dark and light shades and led to the dark and light squares
of modern boards.

The best colors for chess
boards are brown or green and off-
white. Black and red boards are too
glaring on the eyes and are never
used in competitions.

Before setting up your pieces,
always make sure that the square
in the bottom right corner is light
colored (see Diagram 1). The rule
for chess players and dieters is:

DIAGRAM 1. Light is right.




















The Evolution of Chess


The Chessmen

At the start of a game, each player has an army of 16 men, consisting of
eight pieces and eight pawns. The pieces include a King, a Queen, two
Bishops, two Knights, and two Rooks. The goal of the game is to capture
your opponent?s King, so the King is in a class of its own. The other pieces
are divided into two groups: the Bishops and Knights are minor pieces,
and the Rooks and the Queen are major pieces.

The two armies are distinguished by their color. For obvious reasons,
the player with the lighter-colored army is referred to as White, and the
player with the darker-colored army is referred to as Black. By tradition,
when discussing particular games, the name of the person playing White is
always given first. For example, in the Karl Anderssen-Ignac Kolisch match
mentioned in the next section, Anderssen is White and Kolisch is Black.

Today, most chess sets are variations of a classic design by English-
man Howard Staunton (1810-74). Later in this chapter, you will see
photographs of Staunton chessmen.

Chess Timers

The scene: a tournament in the mid 1800s. Paul Morphy (considered by
many people to be the greatest player of all time) is becoming agitated.
His opponent, Louis Paulsen, has been deliberating over his move for 9
hours. Morphy, usually the epitome of politeness and certainly one of the
quickest players around, finally feels the need to ask, ?Excuse me, why
aren?t you making a move?? Paulsen comes to life with a jerk: ?Oh, I
thought it was your move!?

Incidents such as this one prompted the idea that games should be
timed, and in 1861 the Karl Anderssen-Ignac Kolisch match in London
introduced the concept of timed games to the world by timing the match
with an hourglass for each player.


Technology soon left the hourglass behind. When Wilhelm Steinitz
established himself as the world?s best player by defeating Anderssen in
1866, the games were timed by independent clocks. By the 1880s, the first
mechanical, double chess clock had been invented.

Today, on the international scene, each player commonly has 2 hours
to complete 40 moves. Other time limits are also used, though, with Blitz
chess (where each player has 5 minutes for the entire game!) being
particularly exciting and popular.

Achess clock consists of two timers attached to each other or set side
by side. Whereas a chessboard is mandatory equipment, a chess clock is
necessary only for tournaments. You can enjoy chess for a lifetime and
never use a clock.

The idea behind using a chess clock is to allow each player only a
certain amount of thinking time. Let?s say that you are playing a game in
which each side is allowed 1 hour for the whole game. While you are
thinking over your move, your timer ticks away the precious minutes of
your hour. When you make a move, you reach over to the clock and press
the button closest to you. Your timer stops and the timer of your opponent
starts. Your opponent does likewise. To win the game, you must either
checkmate your opponent, force him to give up, or present him with
such difficult problems that he uses up all his time and, as aresult, forfeits
the game.

Today, two types of clocks are used. Most common is the old mechan-
ical, windup style. These clocks usually range in price from about $50 to
$80. A popular alternative is the digital clock, preferred by many people
because it displays the remaining time to the second. Digital clocks tend
to be more expensive than mechanical clocks?ranging anywhere from
$60 to $120.

If you don?t own a clock but want to time your games, you can use a
tape recorder to sound a beep every 10 seconds. When you hear the beep,
The Evolution of Chess


you must make your move or suffer some dire consequence?forfeiture
of the game is the usual penalty, but you can be creative: loss of all your
worldly possessions, exile to a remote island where nobody plays chess,
and so forth.

Reading and Writing Chess Moves

Before I can describe how to set up the chessboard and how to move the
pieces and pawns, I need to explain algebraic chess notation. Many ways
of writing down chess moves have been tried over the years, but algebraic
notation has become increasingly popular in the last couple of centuries.
Today, it is the only notation recognized by FIDE.

Besides its ease of use, algebraic notation is particularly valuable
because it is essentially the same in all languages. The only difference
from language to language is the letter used to denote the piece being
moved. For example, in English a Bishop is represented by a B. In
German a Bishop is called a Laufer (which actually means runner), so an
Lrepresents this piece. However, if the Bishop is being moved to square
c4, the move is written similarly: Bc4 or Lc4.

No matter which notation is used, the following symbols always mean
the same thing: !?excellent move; !!?brilliant move; ??poor move;
???_gross blunder; ?!?dubious move; and !??interesting move.

Mastering Algebraic Notation
At one time or another, everyone has glanced through a chess book or
at the chess column in a newspaper and noticed strange combinations of
letters and numbers that obviously constitute a secret code decipherable
only by genius cryptographers.

Not so. Algebraic chess notation is easy to learn. But don?t tell
anybody. Let your friends be amazed by your brilliance, and let your
family think that you have just mastered an ancient language. This illusion



















might be useful if you take a trip: ?I
have to stop over in Washington, dear.
The Smithsonian wants me to look
at a new codex they just dug up.?
Diagram 2 tells just about all
you need to know as far as alge-
braic notation is concerned. By
convention, chess diagrams always
show White playing from the bot-
tom and Black playing from the top.
The eight files (rows that run
left to right for White and right to

left for Black) are indicated by the small letters a, b, c, d, e, f, g, and h,
respectively. The eight ranks (columns that run from bottom to top for
White and from top to bottom for Black) are numbered 1 through 8. In
the starting position, the White pieces and pawns are placed on the 1st
and 2nd ranks, and the Black pieces and pawns are placed on the 7th and
8th ranks. (I'll cover how to set up the pieces and pawns and how to move






















them later in this chapter.)

As you can see in Diagram 2,
this letter/number scheme gives
each individual square a perma-
nent ?name.? Don?t bother memo-
rizing these names. Instead, simply
join together the file letter and the
rank number.

Let?s look at Diagram 3 as an
illustration. If a piece is moved to
the X?ed square, you simply com-
bine the file?s letter and the rank?s
The Evolution of Chess


number to obtain the square?s name?in this case, e4. Then place the first
letter of the piece being moved in front ofthe square?s name. For example,
if you move your King to the X?ed square, you write Ke4. If you move your
Bishop to that square, you write Be4. To avoid confusion with the King,
a Knight is indicated by N, so if you move your Knight to that square, you
write Ne4. A Rook would be Re4, and a Queen would be Qe4. Pawn moves
are recognized by the absence of any letter. Thus, if you move a pawn to
e4, simply write e4.

Captures are indicated by an x. Ifa Knight captures another piece on
e4, you write the move as Nxe4. When a pawn makes a capture, you must
also record the file from which it came. Thus, moving a pawn from f3 to
capture something on e4 is written like this: fxe4.

Here is another rule concerning algebraic notation:

m@ If two identical pieces can go to the same square, you
must clearly identify which piece is being moved.







QUIZ 1. Give the names of
the three squares marked
with an X in Diagram 4.
















For example, Diagram 5 shows White Knights on both c3 and g3. If one
of the Knights moves to square e4, you cannot write Ne4 because that
notation doesn?t indicate which Knight moved. Writing Nce4 makes it
clear that the c3-Knight moved.

Diagram 6 shows another problem that you might run into. Here,
both Knights are on the c-file and they can both move to e4. Writing Nce4
would not help at all here. Instead, N3e4 shows that the Knight on the 3rd
rank is the one that is going to e4.

The next four notation rules may not make much sense to you if you
are completely new to chess. Don?t panic! I'll cover the four moves in
question in detail later in the book. Their notation rules are included here
so that you'll have all the rules in one place for future reference.

@ Castling involves moving the King and the Rook at the
same time. You use one of two castling notations, depend-
ing on which Rook is involved in the move. If the Rook on
either h1 or h8 is involved, the move is written O-O. If the
Rook on either al or a8 is involved, the move is written
0-0-0. Castling is explained on page 29.






































The Evolution of Chess


m@ Anen passant capture is shown by placing e.p. after the
move. I discuss the en passant rule on page 27.

@ Ifyou check your opponent?s King, you write either ch or
+ after the move. In this book, I will use +. Check and
checkmate are discussed on page 22.

@ If you promote a pawn to a piece, you simply write the
move made by the pawn and say which piece it turns into.
For example, in Diagram 7, if you move the pawn on e7 to
e8 and promote it to a Queen, you write e8=Q; if you
promote it to a Knight, you write e8=N. I discuss pawn
promotion on page 21.

I should mention one other notation convention. A complete move
consists of a move number followed by White?s move and then Black?s
move, like this: 1.e4 e5. In game annotations (commentary), it is often
necessary to discuss first White?s
move and then Black?s move.
White?s move presents no problems:
1.e4 is obviously White?s move. To
avoid confusion when discussing
Black?s move, the convention is to
replace White?s move with three
periods, as in 1...e5.

That?s all there is to algebraic
notation! Don?t let it scare you.
With a little practice, it will become
second nature.




















How to Set Up the Board

Chessmen have been placed in the same starting positions for centuries.
Some players, afraid that chess is becoming played out, have recom-
mended different starting setups. Though these other arrangements are
interesting, they have never really caught on. There is still only one
accepted way to set up the chess-

Diagram 8 shows all the pieces
and pawns in their starting posi-
tions. Note the King and Queen in
the middle, the Bishops on either
side of them, and further out, the
Knights and the Rooks. The pawns
are lined up in front of the pieces,
like foot soldiers on parade.

The main point of confusion for
DIAGRAM 8. some people is where to place the

King and Queen. Does the King go
on the right or the left? Here?s a simple rule to help you remember:

Always put the Queen on her color.

In the diagram you can see that the White Queen is on a light square and
the Black Queen is on a dark square.





















Dividing the Board

The chessboard is divided into areas known as the Kingside and the
Queenside. White?s Kingside is all the squares in the el-e4-h4-h1 rectangle,
and his Queenside is all the squares in the d1-d4-a4-al rectangle. Black?s
Kingside is all the squares in the e8-e5-h5-h8 rectangle, and his Queenside
is all the squares in the d8-d5-a5-a8 rectangle.

The Evolution of Chess


QUIZ 2. Take all the men off your board, put this book down, and

then set up the pieces and pawns in their correct positions.



How to Move the Pieces and Pawns

At last, you are ready to learn how to move the pieces! You will be
surprised at just how easy it is. When I was in junior high school, a friend
of mine learned how to play chess. His mother paid him a classic
backhanded compliment, ?That?s very good, dear, but it takes years to
learn how to play real chess.? Most people share this misconception about
the difficulty of chess. Although it is true that chess is a hard game to
master, you'll have no problem at all learning the rules and enjoying the
game right away.

In chess, the two players move in turn. You can?t skip a move or pass,
even if making a move means you will lose the game. And while we?re
dealing with the basics, I might as well introduce one quick fact that
concerns all the pieces: Besides the Knight, no piece can change direc-
tions mid-move! You cannot start moving your piece in one direction and
then, during the same move, change directions, zigzagging all over the
board like some berserk mouse in a maze. Only when you start your next
move can you change the direction in which a piece is traveling.

As you move about the board, you need to be alert to opportu-
nities to capture your opponent?s pieces and pawns. Capturing an
enemy piece or pawn is a simple matter of moving your piece or
pawn to the square occupied by the enemy piece and lifting it off
the board. Other than the King, any piece can be captured. (For the
King, inevitable capture ends the game before the actual capture is
carried out.)



The pieces and pawns are known collectively as material. If you
capture one of your opponent?s pieces, you have gained material. If he
then captures your equivalent piece, he is said to have recaptured that
piece and material is said to be even.

The King?s Stately Pace
The King has always represented a monarch, from a Rajah in
India, to a Shah in Persia, to a Roi in France. The King is the
most important piece on the board simply because its cap-
ture represents the loss of the game. The fact that the King
is the most important piece by no means makes it the most
powerful. It can?t jump over other pieces (as the Knight
can), and it can?t sacrifice itself.
The King has always moved exactly as it does today, except
that castling, a King?Rook maneuver described on page 29,
was notinvented until about the 13th century. The King can
.. Move one square in any direction, be it horizontally,
vertically, or diagonally, and it can move both forward
and backward. Diagram 9 shows the King?s sphere of
~ influence from square c5.


The Birth of a Queen

More than 1400 years ago, in the original Indian game of Chaturanga, the
Queen was the weakest piece, its moves being limited to the four squares
diagonally adjacent to the square the Queen was sitting on. At that time,
the piece was not known as the Queen, but rather as the Mantri, which
in English means adviser to the King. When the game spread to Persia,
the Mantri became the Firzan (which means wise man). In Europe, the
name was never translated literally. From the early days, the piece was

The Evolution of Chess


known as the Lady (the Dama in Spanish). Because Europeans
thought it natural for the King to have a consort, in many .
countries the Lady became the Queen. &
Around 1475, the Queen?s moves were extended to make
it the most powerful piece on the board. The Italians charac-
terized the new piece as furioso and the new game as scacchi
alla rabioso (rabid chess), which has nothing to do with the
mental state of chess players!
With the combined powers of a Bishop and a Rook,
the Queen has the ability to control an amazing number
of squares. In any one move, the Queen can move any
distance horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. Itcan
move backward but cannot jump over other pieces. eS
Diagram 10 shows the Queen?s sphere of influence from square C5,








































The Rook Is Not a Castle
Until the 15th century when the Queen became the most powerful piece,
the Rook reigned supreme. So important was this piece that a player
attacking it was expected to show his manners by saying
Though the Rook?s powers have not changed throughout the
history of chess, its name has undergone various transforma-
tions. Originally called a Ratha (Sanskrit for chariot), it traveled
to Europe under the Arabic name Rukh. The Italians used the
like-sounding name Rocco (which means tower). Because
the Rook is a small tower, Western Europeans followed the
« lead of the Italians in two ways: They either used the word
for tower from their own language (Tour in French), or they
used a word that sounded like Rocco (Rook in English). Thus, though a
chariot vaguely resembles a tower on wheels, it was more the chance
similarity between the sound of an Arabic and an Italian word and the
connection between towers and kings that gave us the modern Rook.

Some players incorrectly call the Rook a Castle. If you hear the name
Castle, don?t bother pointing out the mistake, however. Calling the Rook
a Castle is about the smallest error you can make in chess, because
everybody understands which piece you mean.

The Rook is one of the strongest chess pieces. It can move one or
more squares on any file or rank. Like most other pieces, the Rook cannot
jump over enemy or friendly pieces, but it can move backward, forward,
and sideways. It can move only horizontally or vertically, not diagonally.

In old Indian chess sets, the Rook has the shape of a chariot?an
appropriate analogy for a piece that blasts down open files and ranks with
great speed and force. Diagram 11 shows the Rook?s sphere of influence
from square c5.


The Evolution of Chess


















Quiz 3. Can the White Rook capture anything from the position

shown in Diagram 12? What is White?s best move?



Elephant, Runner, and Finally Bishop
The predecessor of the modem Bishop was the Fil or Alfil (meaning
elephant). Itwasamuch weaker piece thanitsmoderncounterpart
because it could only leap diagonally across one square.
Europeans, who had never seen an elephant, had a tough
time fitting this animal into the royal court. As time went on,
this piece was called the Alfiere (meaning standard-bearer) by
the Italians and the Laufer (meaning runner) by the Germans.
In France, the stylized elephant of the Indian chess set was
thought to look like a court jester?s cap, so the piece became
known as the Fou (meaning fool). In England, the piece was
thought to resemble a bishop?s mitre, a symbol that fit well
with the power structure of the day: King, Queen, and Church.




The Bishop is considered to be about equal in value to a Knight,
though many chess writers give the Bishop a small edge. By the end of
the 15th century, the Bishop had lost its power to leap across a square
but had gained long-range maneuverability on the diagonal, with the
ability to move backward or forward. Like the Rook, King, and Queen,
the Bishop cannot jump over other pieces.

The Bishop?s one weakness is that it is limited to squares of one color
throughout the game. This restriction hurts the effectiveness of a single
Bishop, but two Bishops working together can cut through an opponent?s
position like a pair of scissors. As a team, they are powerful indeed.

Diagram 13 shows the Bishop?s sphere of influence from square c5.

QUIZ 4. In Diagram 14, could one Bishop ever capture the other?

















The Evolution of Chess


The Noble Knight
Unchanged in 1400 years, the Knight has had variations of the same shape
and has moved around the board in the same way since the invention
of the game. It was known as a horse to the Indians, Persians,
and Arabs, and because the horse was readily identifiable to
Europeans, in many countries the name remained the same.
In other countries, including England and France, the horse
acquired a rider and became a Knight, bringing this piece in
line with the ethic of chivalry associated with the King,
Queen, and Bishop.

Most beginning chess players have a love-hate relation-
ship with the Knight. They love the weird way the Knight ? !
moves, leaping on unsuspecting opponent?s pieces. But they fear the
enemy Knight?s ability to hop all over the place and wipe out their own
pieces. With experience, many players?myself included?develop a
special fondness for the Knight.

The Knight has the strangest move of all the pieces. It moves two
squares along a rank and then one along a file, or two squares along a file
and then one along a rank. The
result is a curiously L-shaped
move. The Knight can go back-
ward, and it is the only piece that
can jump over other men. Diagram
15 shows the Knight?s sphere of
influence from square c5.
















QUIZ 5. In Diagram 16,
which pieces can the White
Knight capture?










The Lowly Pawn
Pawns are the weakest men on the board. They blaze a path for the
stronger pieces and often sacrifice themselves for the glory of their
army?s cause. The pawn?s original Sanskrit name was padati.
Comparing this word with the Latin word for foot, pedis, we can
see why the pawn is often likened to a foot soldier. In fact, the
_ Arabic word for the pawn, baidaq, means exactly that.
; _ Since the earliest days of chess, the pawn has had the same
. basicmovement: It marches forward one square at atime. The
ij only man that can?t move backwards, it is also the only one
that captures in a different way than it normally moves: A pawn can
capture only by moving one square diagonally. In Diagram 17, the White
pawn can capture either the Black Knight or the Black pawn, if the Black
pawn doesn?t get him first! An enemy pawn can thus be immobilized by
placing a pawn or a piece directly in front of it.
When the game was speeded up during the Renaissance, the pawn
acquired two dynamic new abilities. The first is relatively straightforward:


The Evolution of Chess


If a pawn has never moved, it now has the option of moving either one or
two squares forward. It cannot, however, move two squares diagonally
for a capture.

Pawn promotion: The second change has much more profound im-
plications. The pawn may seem unimportant, but it is now far from
powerless! Like a caterpillar, the pawn dreams of the day when it can
metamorphose. All it has to do is amble down the board to the 8th rank
(the ist rank from Black?s perspective), and it is immediately promoted
to a piece of its own color. It can become a Queen (the usual choice), a
Knight, a Bishop, or a Rook; it cannot become a King or remain a pawn.
Theoretically, you could have nine Queens on the board at once ifall eight
of your pawns made it to the last rank! Originally, the pawn could be
promoted only to a Minister (the weak original form of the Queen). With
the enormous strengthening of the Queen, promoting a pawn to a Queen
has become a key strategy in many games.

Diagram 18 shows the sphere of influence of a modern-day pawn from
square c5.















































QUIZ 6. In Diagram 19, can the White pawn move?

QuIZ 7. Find every legal move the White King can make in
Diagram 20.



How the Game Is Won

If you attack your opponent?s King (called putting the King in check) and
your opponent is unable to make any move that will prevent you from
capturing his King, the result is called checkmate. The game is over, and
you have won.

Check and Checkmate

The word checkmate is derived from the Persian words shah, meaning
king, and mat, meaning helpless or defeated. Being checkmated is, in
theory, the only way you can lose a game of chess, but in tournaments

The Evolution of Chess


players also lose by exceeding time limits or by resigning before a

checkmate occurs.

Just 70 years ago, a player was required to announce a check (?Check
to your King!?). Today, however, actually saying ?Check? is mildly
frowned upon, because you might disturb your opponent.

During the game, if your opponent attacks your King you must make
every attempt to get your King out of check. You can protect your King

in one of three ways:

blocking the check.

Capture the piece that is attacking your King.

Put something in the way of the enemy piece, thereby

Move the King to a square that is not under attack.

If your opponent attacks your King and, failing to notice the threat, you
move some other piece, your opponent cannot capture your King. You

must take your move back and
make a different move that gets
your King out of check. Not only
must you move out of check, but
you may not move into check. For
that reason, your King must never
stand next to your opponent?s King.

Diagram 21 shows a check-
mated King. The Black King is
under attack and has no way to get
to safety. Notice that the White
Queen is nicely defended by the
Bishop on d3.














ae wT
QUIZ 8. The position in Di-
agram 22 came about after
the following moves:

1. £4 e6

2. g4 Qh4+

How can the White King
get out of check?













Capturing: Taking Men Out of Action

I remember playing, as a child, a form of checkers in which the idea was
to move your checker next to your opponent?s so that he had to capture
you, whether he wanted to or not.

Chess is altogether different. If your opponent moves his Queen to a
position where you can capture it in five different ways, you should stop
and ponder why he would offer you such a valuable gift. If he has indeed
made a mistake, snap up that Queen! On the other hand, he may be
setting a trap. Perhaps taking his Queen will leave you checkmated!
Obviously, you would then want to ignore the Queen altogether and deal
with the threat of checkmate. In chess, unlike in checkers, you take only
the pieces you want to take.

Aside from a quick checkmate, one of the best ways to win a game is
to slowly capture all of your opponent?s men, leaving his King defenseless
so that you can checkmate with swift brutality. Remember, however, that
this strategy works both ways: Be careful that you don?t inadvertently
allow your opponent to gobble up all your men!

The Evolution of Chess


To avoid this kind of humiliation, an experienced player will often
choose to resign the game. There are many polite ways to give up. Here
are three of them:

@ Tip your King over.

M@ Get on your knees and say, ?I give up O Mighty Con-
querer.? (This obsequious display makes your opponent
feel good.)

m@ Simply say, ?I resign.?
If you are a beginner, I recommend that you never resign a game.
Even in a hopeless position, you can still learn a lesson or two. Closely

watch the way your opponent puts you out of your misery, It?s just a matter
of time before you will get to do it to someone else.

The Confusing Case of Stalemate
One of the more confusing terms to a beginner is that of stalemate. A
stalemate occurs when one player has no legal moves on the board but








Quiz 9. In Diagram 23, it
is Black?s move. Which
pieces can he capture?






















must move because it?s his turn to
do so. This paradox is clearly illu-
strated in Diagram 24. Black would
love to move something but can?t!
All his pawns are blocked, his
Knight is stuck, and his King can?t
move into danger. When this hap-
pens, a stalemate is declared and
the game ends as a draw, or a tie.

Though a stalemate has been
regarded as a draw since the early
DIAGRAM 24. 19th century, in England in the 17th
and 18th centuries it counted as an ?inferior? win. In Middle English, the
word stale meant imitation, so stalemate meant imitation mate. Modern
English language defines the word stalemate as a temporary state of
impasse. But in chess, there?s nothing temporary about it. Stalemate ends
the game.

Back in the 1600s and 1700s, many players felt that allowing a game
to reach a stalemate was dishonorable. In 1614, achess player by the name
of Saul recorded his feelings about stalemates: ?You shall understand that
a stale is a lost game by him that giveth it, and no question to be made
further thereof.?

Let?s clarify the difference between checkmate and stalemate. In a
checkmate, the King is under attack and is unable to get out of danger.
In a stalemate, neither the King nor any other piece is able to move, but
the King is not being attacked.














The Three Phases of a Chess Game

A game of chess is roughly divided into three phases: the opening, the
middlegame, and the endgame.

The Evolution of Chess


The opening consists of the first 10 to 15 moves. During this phase,
both players bring out their central pawns, quickly mobilizing their
Bishops and Knights and castling their Kings.

During the next phase of the game, the middlegame, both players
develop long-term, strategical plans and marshall their Rooks and
Queens and their minor pieces for attack, counterattack, and defense. If
both players survive one another?s strategies, the game eventually settles
down into an endgame.

The transition from middlegame to endgame is sometimes hard to
pinpoint. Endgames generally arise after an exchange of Queens and
other major and minor pieces. Typically, endgames are played with a
Bishop versus Knight, a Rook versus Rook, or a Rook and a minor piece
versus a Rook and a major piece.

As the endgame draws near, the strength of the pawns increases.
With fewer pieces to block them, the pawns can move swiftly up the
board, like wide receivers in a football game. The strength of the King
also increases, and it is able to take an active part in the struggle. Fearful
of checks in the opening and middlegame, the King is happy to move out
in the open when few pieces are left on the board.

More Moves and Rules

The Enigmatic Rule of En Passant
In the 13th century, ifyou wanted to move your pawn two squares forward
and thus safely bypass an enemy pawn, you could invoke the now-
forgotten law of passar battaglia, an Italian phrase meaning to dodge a
fight. Nowadays, this law no longer exists, having been superseded by
the last rule to be introduced into modern chess: en passant.
Introduced in the 15th century and mentioned by Ruy Lopez De
Segura (c. 1530-c. 1580) in a book written in 1561, en passant was not
universally accepted until 1880, when Italian players abandoned the










QUIZ 10. In Diagram 25,
White should win the game
because he is one Queen
ahead. Is Qf7 a good move

for him here?













passar battaglia law. Even today, en passant is undoubtedly the least
known and the most misunderstood of all the rules of chess.

The en passant rule states that if you have a pawn on the 5th rank (the
4th rank from Black?s perspective) and an enemy pawn uses its two-
square option to move past your pawn, you may capture it as if it had
moved only one square. Let?s look to Diagram 26 for help.

If Black plays his pawn from d7
to d6, then White can capture this
pawn by exd6. Realizing this, Black
chooses to use his two-square op-
tion and moves his pawn from d7 to
d5, apparently placing the pawn on
a safe square. However, the en pas-
sant rule can now kick in, and
White can still capture the pawn by
exd6 e.p., just as if the pawn had
moved to dé6 instead of d5!






















The Evolution of Chess


One important point to note about the en passant rule is that if an
enemy pawn moves two squares and goes by you, you must capture it en
passant right away or lose the option. If you don?t exercise the option, you
can still capture another pawn en passant if the opportunity presents itself
later in the game. To illustrate this point, let?s go back to Diagram 26.
Black has just played his pawn from d7 to d5. White chooses not to capture
en passant and instead plays his pawn to d4. Now Black plays the pawn
on f7 to f5, once again giving White an en passant option. White no longer
can capture the d5 pawn but he can play exf6 e.p. if he wants to.

Still confused? Don?t panic. You will see helpful examples of this rule
later in the book.


QUIZ 11. In Diagram 27, if
Black decides not to cap-
ture the White pawn on g5
by ...fxg5 and instead plays
his pawn to f5, could White
then capture the pawn en























The Leap of the King

A composite move of the King and one of the Rooks, castling is the only
rule that allows a player to move two pieces at once. Castling is allowed
only if you have cleared away all the pieces that stand between the King
and the Rook.



There are two types of castling: Kingside and Queenside. In the case
of Kingside castling, you simply move your King two squares to the right
and place your Rook beside it on the left (see Diagram 28). Queenside
castling is the same thing in reverse: You move your King two squares
to the left and place your Rook beside it on the right (see Diagram 29).

Firmly established by the 17th century, castling had existed in other
forms since the 1300s. Thirteenth-century castling was quite an adven-
ture, with the King able to leap to all sorts of unlikely places. Jacopo Da
Cessole states that a King on square e1 could leap to squares cl, c2, c3,
d3, e3, £3, 23, g2, and g1, or even to far away b1 or b2. In the 1400s, Luis
Ramirez Lucena mentioned castling, but in a form that required two
moves to complete. (The Rook was moved first as one move and then the
King could leap over to the Rook on the following move.) Ruy Lopez
mentioned modern castling in his 1561 book.

Today, castling is an important part of the game. Players usually opt
to castle as early as possible in order to place the King in relative safety
at the side of the board.








































The Evolution of Chess


Here are a few more details:

In Diagram 30, White cannot castle because his King would move through
an attacked square. (Black?s Bishop on b5 controls square f1.) Black, on
the other hand, can castle. It?s perfectly fine for a Rook to pass through

If you have moved your King, you can?t castle?even if
you move the King back to its original square.

If you have not moved your King but you have moved one
of your Rooks, you can castle only on the side of the
unmoved Rook.

You cannot castle if you are in check. You can castle ona
subsequent move, but only after you get out of check.

You cannot castle through check.

an attacked square.


QUIZ 12. Can White castle on either side of Diagram 31?









































In the past, custom required that you warn your opponent if you attacked
his Queen or Rook. It was not at all unusual to hear a well-mannered
gentleman say with great seriousness, ?Gardez!?

Though the custom has long since died out, many amateurs are still
under the impression that it is proper etiquette to warn an opponent when
his Queen is attacked. In fact, ifa modern tournament player issued such
a warning, he would in turn be warned by the tournament director not to
disturb his opponent!

Touch Move and Other Rules

The remaining rules don?t apply to amateur chess. For example, accord-
ing to the touch move rule, if it is your move and you touch a piece, you
must move it. In a friendly game, this rule is not really necessary unless
both players agree ahead of time to follow it.

Other rules, such as draw by three-time repetition of position (which
states that if the identical position occurs three times and each time the
same player must move, a draw can be declared), are tournament rules
that rarely apply in normal playing situations. Moreover, they have
nothing to do with the way the game is actually played.

An Example Game

With all those rules out of the way, we can take a look at an actual
game?albeit a short one. For many of you, this may be the first time you
have ever played a whole game, so do it carefully. The game is not
particularly well played, but it does demonstrate the use of chess notation,
the en passant and castling rules, and finally a checkmate.

Work through the following moves, one by one. Then be sure that
the positions of the pieces on your board are exactly the same as those

The Evolution of Chess


in Diagram 32. If they are different, you have made a mistake in following
the notation. You should play through the game again to find out where.

1. e4 e6 8.

2. d4 d5 9.

3. eS cS 10.
4. c3 Nc6 11.
5. Bd3 c4 12.
6. Bc2 Nge7 13.
7. Nh3 b6 14,

O-O ?Bd?

b4 cxb3 e.p.
axb3 = Rc8

Qh5 a6

Ng5s g6

Nxh7 ? gxh5

Nf6 checkmate

As you can see in Diagram 32, Black has won the White Queen but

his King is in check and has no-
where to go! Black is checkmated
and has lost the game. Black would
have been well-advised to avoid
capturing the White Queen and to
instead guard against the threat-
ened checkmate.

In the games given in Chapter
Six, ?Annotated Games,? we will
discuss each of the moves, map-
ping out typical opening strategies
and exploring the plays that might
follow them.

Testing Your Skills




















Tests help you see how well you have absorbed the information I am
giving you. You will find tests sprinkled throughout the chapters. Take
as much time as you need and try hard to solve each problem. If some of
them give you trouble, don?t get upset! Simply look at the solutions at the


back of the book and review the chapter that explains that particular

For the first test, assume that these moves have been played:
1. e4 e5 3. Nf3 Be7
2. £4 exf4 4. Bc4 Bh4+








TEST 1. The White King is under
attack. List all the ways he can get

out of check.














TEST 2. It is White?s turn to play.
Hunt down the Black Knight and

capture it.
















The Evolution of Chess






TEST 3. It is White?s turn to play.
Play for both sides and see whether
one side can make a new Queen.
Remember, in chess the two sides
must move in turn.











TEST 4. If it is White?s turn to play,
can he castle on either side? If it is
Black?s turn to play, can he castle
on either side?





















TEST 5. Itis White?s turn to play. List
all the pieces that the White Knight
on d4 can capture.













TEST 6. Black is trailing by one
piece, but he can even the score
with the simple capture 1...Nxb4. Is
that the best move? Or is there a
better one?















The Evolution of Chess








TEST 7. Black has only a blocked
pawn, and White is tempted by the
capturing move 1.Qxf7. Is this a
good move?













TEST 8. White is considering the
move 1.Rxd7 and also 1.Nd5, which
attacks the Black Queen. Is any-
thing wrong with either move?

























TEST 9. It is Black?s turn to play. He
would like to move his Rook from
{8 to an open file. Which is the bet-
ter square, d8 or e8?













The First Principle:

nchess, the word force does not refer to an obscure mystical concept.

Nor is the concept of force difficult to understand. When I speak of

force, Iam referring to the strength of the pieces, either individually
or in groups. For example, if you and your opponent have the same pieces
on the board and you have one pawn more than your opponent, you have
an advantage in force, also known as a material advantage.

Gaining a material advantage is one of the best ways to win a game
of chess. If you can capture all of your opponent?s pieces, his King will be
defenseless and your army can easily hunt it down for the big checkmate.
If material is even but you have most of your army aimed at the Kingside,
whereas your opponent has only acouple of defenders in that sector, then
you have an advantage in force on the Kingside. Thus, you can have two
kinds of advantages in force:

mM More pieces overall.

@ More pieces in a particular area of the board.



Assigning the Pieces Numerical Values

As a game progresses and pieces are traded or lost, it is not at all unusual
for the armies to be left with different types of men. For example, White
may have two Rooks, one Bishop, and six pawns, whereas Black may have
two Rooks, one Bishop, one Knight, and three pawns. Who is ahead? The
easiest way to answer this question is by using a system that assigns a
numerical value to each piece. Then you can assess what each army is
worth. In order of increasing importance, numerical values are assigned
as follows:

@ Pawn: 1 point.
Knight: 3 points.
Bishop: 3 points.
Rook: 5 points.

Queen: 9 points.

King: Infinite value, because its loss means the loss of the

Now we can determine whether White is ahead with two Rooks, one
Bishop, and six pawns or whether Black has the edge with two Rooks,
one Bishop, one Knight, and three pawns. White?s two Rooks are worth
10 points, his Bishop is worth 3 points, and his six pawns are worth 6
points, for a total of 19 points. Black?s two Rooks are worth 10 points, his
Bishop is worth 3 points, his Knight is worth 3 points, and his three pawns
are worth 3 points. Black?s grand total is 19 points?exactly the same as
White?s! We can now see that neither side is materially ahead.
Here are some typical material imbalances:

mM A Queen (9 points) versus two Rooks (10 points): The two
Rooks are favored.

The First Principle: Force


m@ A Queen (9 points) and a pawn (1 point) versus a Rook (5
points), a Bishop @ points), and a Knight (3 points): The
side with the Queen has a material disadvantage with 10
points, compared with a total of 11 points for the enemy

m@ A Knight © points) versus three pawns (3 points): Here,
neither side has an advantage.

@ ARook (5 points) anda pawn (1 point) versus a Bishop (3
points) and a Knight (3 points): As far as points go, it?s 6
to 6?an even match. However, here is acase in which the
numbers may not accurately reflect the true advantage in
force. Two minor pieces (remember, Bishops and
Knights are minor pieces, not pawns) are usually more
active than a Rook and a pawn, especially when many
other pieces are on the board. So the two minor pieces
are usually considered more valuable.

m@ A Rook (6 points) versus a Bishop (3 points) and two
pawns (2 points): These positions are about equal.

You should now be able to figure out whether trading one of your men
for one of your opponent?s is favorable to you or to him, at least in terms
of force. However, I must warn you against relying too heavily on num-
bers. Though this table of values is a useful tool, they tend to be more
accurate in some types of positions than in others. In one position, three
pawns may be superior to a minor piece, whereas in another position, you
might well find that a Bishop or Knight completely outweighs three
pawns. Thus, after assessing the material advantage in terms of points,
you must always take another look at the particular position on the board
to see whether it warrants getting involved in the ?numbers racket.? Use
the values as a guide, but use your own eyes as well.










QUIZ 13. In Diagram 33, it
is White?s turn to play.
What is his most attractive
















The Romantic Style of Chess

Though some uninformed people feel that there is only one correct way
to play chess, the experienced chess fanatic comes to realize that every
player has his or her unique style of play, each as valid as any other. Some
players excel in a purely logical approach to chess, breaking each game
down and analyzing it with the rigor of scientists. Others rely on delicate
maneuvers and subile positional understanding, imbuing their games
with clarity and depth and rendering each game with the artistic flair of
classical musicians. The style that has always appealed most to the public,
though, is that of the crazed, attacking maniac. This type of player
delights in sacrificing his pieces and pawns in an all-out effort to drag
down the enemy King as quickly as possible.

The First Principle: Force



An outstanding exponent of
this playing style was Frank James
Marshall (1877-1944), who held the
U.S. Championship from 1909 to
1935. Marshall?s daring style often
landed him in deep trouble, but for-
tune smiles on the brave. He was
often able to trick his way out of
difficulties and, as a result, became
known as the Great Swindler. The
story goes that in one game Mar- Age at! ,
shall sacrificed his Queenin sucha Frank Marshall, the Great Swindler.
shocking way that the audience, enraptured by the beauty of his move,
virtually showered him with gold pieces!




How to Gain an Advantage in Force

As I mentioned earlier, there are two kinds of advantages in force: more
pieces overall, and more pieces in a particular area of the board. To
position more pieces in a particular
area of the board, you simply move
all your pieces to that sector (usu-
ally the Kingside). If your oppo-
nent, meanwhile, has moved his
pieces elsewhere, you will have an
advantage in force in the area
where your army is camped.

In Diagram 34, Black?s whole
army has gone off to smell the
roses on the Queenside. White?s
army stands massed and ready to piagram 3a.


























































QUIZ 14. In Diagram 35, it is Black?s move. He would like to move
his Rook from {8 to an open file. Which is better, ...Rfd8 or ...Rfe8?

QUIZ 15. In Diagram 36, White has his Knight, Rook, and Bishop
all aimed at the Kingside and already has an advantage in force
there. How can he make that advantage even greater?



destroy the enemy King. White?s attack against the Black King will prove
successful (the threat of Qxh7 and checkmate is unstoppable), because
the poor Black King and his two defending pawns are completely out-

It?s great if you can deploy your men in one area for an attack like this
one. It is even better to gain an advantage in force by simply capturing
your opponent?s pieces. If you succeed, you have a superior army that
you can deploy anywhere, secure in the knowledge that your opponent?s
smaller army cannot match yours. Naturally, your opponent will try hard

The First Principle: Force


to prevent you from capturing his pieces, but I?m going to show you some
tricks that will often fool even the most experienced players. These tricks,
which are officially called tactics, include traps, threats, and schemes that
are based on the calculation of variations. (I discuss the calculation of
variations in Chapter Seven, ?The Four Principles and You.?)

Basic Tactics

We will now examine two basic tactics: the pin and the fork. These tactics
are used so often that any student of chess must know them and know
them well.

The Pin
The pin is a tactic in which one piece prevents an enemy piece from
moving. For example, in Diagram 37 assume that the following moves
have been played:

1. ed e)5

2. Nfs d6

3. Ne3 Be4

The White Knight on f8 is
pinned by the Bishop on g4. This
Knight can legally move, but doing
so is hardly desirable because it
results in the loss of the White
Queen?for example, with 4.d4?
exd4 5.Nxd4?? Bxd1. Black?s mate-
rial advantage should then lead to DIAGRAM 37.























eventual victory. Instead of 4.d4?, White would do better to put the
question to Black?s Bishop by

4. h3

4 a. Bxf3
5. Qxf3

leads to an even trade and ends the pin.

Let?s look at another example. The strongest type of pin is the pin
against the King. In Diagram 38, the pinned Knight cannot legally move,
because doing so exposes the Black King to attack. It is Black?s turn to
move. The material count is even, and White is attacking the Black
Knight. Black?s normal reaction would be to simply move the Knight to
a safe square. However, he doesn?t have that option here, because any
Knight move would place the Black King in danger from the White
Bishop. Black does not fear Bxc6 because he can retaliate with ...bxc6
(which amounts to an even trade), so he tries to save himself with

1. exd5
Now the White pawn is gone, and
the Black Knight is adequately pro-
tected by the pawn on b7. Unfortu-
nately for Black, however, White
answers with

2. exd5
renewing the attack on the Knight
and threatening to win with 3.dxc6.
White?s pin has made defense
against this threat impossible.




















The First Principle: Force








Now let?s look at some ways a
pin can be used to win material. The
position in Diagram 39 came about
after these moves:

1. e4 d5

2. exdS Qxd5

3. Nc3
Black must now move his Queen to
safety. One of the worst possible
moves is to sound a retreat with











3. aes Qcb6??
because White can then play DIAGRAM 39.
4. Bb5

pinning the Queen to its King and trading the Black Queen (9 points) for
the White Bishop (3 points), a gain of 6 points!

Diagram 40 shows another example. Black is doing very well in this
position. He is up a Rook (5 points) for a Bishop (3 points) and a pawn (1
point), and itis his turn to play. His
best plan would now be to move his
King into the action by 1...Kf7 fol
lowed by 2...Ke7 and 3...Kd6. An-
other good idea is to activate the
Rook by playing it to the 2nd rank
via 1...Rb8 and 2...Rb2. Instead,
Black gets greedy and tries to win
White?s d5-pawn right away by
grabbing with

Toa Rxd5??



























White counters with

2. Bb3
The Black Rook is now pinned to
his King, unable to get out of dan-
ger. After the futile

2. oan Kfs
White?s response is
3. Bxd5

White is 3 points ahead and within
sight of an easy win.

In Diagram 41, White has a 1-
DIAGRAM 41. point advantage in force?Bishop
and Knight (6 points) versus Rook (5 points)?so things are looking rosy
for him. It?s Black?s turn to play, and his first move is

1. ae d4
This attack on the White Bishop also moves the pawn closer to its
Queening square. White responds

2. Bxd4??

White has walked into a trap. If someone offers you a free pawn, always
study the board carefully to figure out what trick he has in mind. In this
case, White grabbed the pawn without a second thought, only to be
slapped in the face with reality. Either 2.Bd2 or 2.Bf4 would have been a
better move. After

2. une Rd8
the White Bishop is pinned, because White is unable to move his Bishop
without putting his King in checkmate?for example, 3.Bc3 Rd1+ 4.Be1
Rxel checkmate. (This type of mate is called a Back Rank Mate.) Now
White threatens to move his Bishop into safety with

3. g3











The First Principle: Force


because in response to any Rook check, White?s King can then safely step
up to g2. Unfortunately, White will not get the opportunity to run away.
Black plays

3B. wee Rxd4
Now Black is ahead with a 1-point advantage in force?Knight and three
pawns (6 points) versus Rook and two pawns (7 points).

The Fork

The second basic tactic, the fork, is a simultaneous attack on two or more
pieces by one enemy piece. In fact, forks are often called double attacks.
Though any piece may perform a fork, the Knight is so adept at this
maneuver that it could be called Mr. Fork.

In Diagram 42, we can see the horrifying effect of a Knight fork. The
Black King is under attack so Black must move it. However, his Queen
and Rook are also under fire. Black must give up his Queen (9 points) for
the Knight @ points). After a rout
like this, many beginners come to
fear Knights and go out of their way
to capture their opponent?s horses
as fast as possible.

Other examples of forks are
given in Tests 10 through 14 at the
end of the chapter.
























Pee Ee Eee eee 2

QUIZ 16. In Diagram 43, it
is Black?s move. Seeing
that White threatens to
fork him with Nc7+, Black

1 ...Bb8+

White answers with

2 Nc7+

blocking Black?s check and
imposing a check of his
DIAGRAM 43. own! White feels that after
2...Bxc7+ 3.Rxc7, his Rook
will be well placed in the
endgame. Was 2.Nc7+ a
good move?



















Laying Traps
Everyone likes the idea of trapping his opponent. Picture the following:
You are in the middle ofa long, hard struggle with your nemesis, Pit-Bull
Hogan. The game has been even for a long time, when suddenly you seem
to have made a grave error! Pit-Bull triumphantly captures your Queen,
a snarl on his lips and a triumphant gleam in his eyes. He looks for signs
of the panic that he knows you must be feeling. Instead, you calmly make
your move and call ?Checkmate!?

Doesn?t that victory taste sweet? Of course it does! However, I must
burst your bubble with a dire warning. Don?t play for traps! Always make
moves that deploy your men in a way that helps your position generally.

The First Principle: Force


Never play a move that puts you in either of the following emotionally
charged situations:

M@ Your opponent doesn?t see your trap and loses horribly.

?@ He sees your trap and counters in such a way that your
position falls apart.

I?m not saying you shouldn?t lay a trap, only that you should be sure your
position won?t be compromised if your opponent avoids the trap.

On occasion, you will find yourself facing an opponent who stumbles
into one opening trap after another. On other occasions, your opponent
will be the one who is baiting the hook. To successfully trap or avoid being
trapped, you must have some familiarity with the basic types of traps:
those aimed at weak pawns, those aimed at undefended pieces, and those
that batter the King?s bodyguards.

A Pair of Weaklings
The first type of trap is based on the weakness of the pawns on squares
f7 and f2. In the opening phase of a game, the f7-pawn becomes a major
target of White?s attack. Black must be very careful that catastrophe does
not strike him on that square. Equally, White must be careful about the
pawn on square f2. These pawns are particularly vulnerable because they
are protected only by Kings, in contrast with the other pawns in front of
the Kings. The Black pawns on both d7 and e7, for example, are protected
by four pieces. White would like nothing better than to penetrate the line
through f7 and launch a major offensive against the enemy monarch.
On the following pages are some typical ways of taking advantage of
the weakness of the f7- and f2-pawns.



Scholar?s Mate:
1. e4 e5 3. Qh5 Nf62?
2. Bc4 Nc6 4. Qxf7 checkmate

Very nice, but what if Black had seen White?s threat of checkmate and
had taken defensive measures? Instead of 3...Nf6??, Black should have
played 3...¢6. Then White would play 4.Qf3. (White: deserves credit for
perseverance! He would once again threaten checkmate on f7.) Then
Black would play 4...Nf6 and, in-
stead of the result shown in Dia-
gram 44, all would be well.
Tcan?trecommend the Scholar?s
Mate tactic, because if Black sees
the threat (and he usually will), the
White Queen will have developed
too early and will, as a result, lose
time as it runs away from Black?s
pieces. This conceptis discussed in
more detail in Chapter Three, ?The





















DIAGRAM 44. Second Principle: Time.?
Legall?s Mate:

1. e4 e5 3. Nec3 g6

2. Nf3  d6 4. Bcd Bed?

Black has tied down White?s Knight on f3 with a pin. However, his Bishop
is undefended on g4 and White?s army is better developed. White can now
launch a surprise attack against square f7.

5. Nxed!!
White seems to have gone berserk!

The First Principle: Force









Black should now limit his losses
and play 5...dxe5, to which White
would respond 6.Qxg4. However,
instead of losing a pawn, Black eats
White?s Queen?as most people

Bae Bxd1?
So Black captures a Queen. But
now Black?s pawn on f7 falls and
White?s attack crashes through:

6. Bxf7+ Ke7

7. Nd5 checkmate DIAGRAM 45.

As Diagram 45 shows, Black ate too much and got heartburn.














The Case of the Undefended Piece

The second type of trap is known as a discovery, or a discovered attack.
Discovered attacks are usually directed at undefended pieces. Any unde-
fended piece is subject to loss and must be carefully watched. Some
examples of ways to use undefended pieces for setting traps include the

The Excommunicated Bishop:

e4 e5 4. Neo3 Bg4
Nf3 d6é 5. O-O
Bc4 Nc6

The Legall?s Mate move, 5.Nxe5, would not work here because Black can
play 5...Nxe5! to prevent the checkmate and defend the Bishop on g4.










Next, Black plays

5. ae Nge7?2?
He would do better to play 5...Nf6,
simply defending the Bishop on g4.

6. Bxf7+! Kxf7

7. Ng5+
The Knight checks, thereby uncov-
ering a Queen attack on the Black
Bishop?a perfect example ofa dis-
covered attack.

7. ane Ke8

8. Qxg4
White has now gained a pawn. The final position is shown in Diagram 46.
When you first start playing chess, you should be very careful about
snatching pawns in the opening. Your Queen can often get caught dipping
her hand into the cookie jar, as you'll see in the next example.
















The Queen That Never Came Home:

1. e4 d5 4. d4 e6

2. exd5 Qxd5 5. Bd3 Qxd4??

3. Ne3 Qd8
Black thinks that White has overlooked a pawn but a surprise is in store.

6. Bb5+!
As you can see in Diagram 47, White has initiated a discovered attack on
Black?s Queen. Because Black is in check, he can do nothing to defend
the Queen. Note that 6...Nc6 would not help, because after 7.Qxd4, the
Black Knight would be pinned by the Bishop to his King and would be
unable to make a capture.

Discovered attacks on far-flung pieces are common traps, and you
need to understand them completely in order to foil them. At this point,

The First Principle: Force


though, you should concentrate on recognizing the danger of allowing
an advancing piece to go undefended.

The Battering Ram

The final type of trap is based on dismantling the enemy King?s cover,
otherwise known as playing for a devastating check. Having the skills to
blaze a trail to the enemy King is important. Sometimes, however, your
opponent cooperates before you can display your skills. Probably the
most famous example of an opened-up King is the Fool?s Mate.

Fool?s Mate:
1. £4

This move is called the Bird Opening.
1. . e6
2. g4??

For no reason whatsoever White has opened up his own King to attack
on the el-h4 diagonal.
2. ane Qhé4 checkmate

Diagram 48 shows the horrifying result.




































Let?s look at another example of how you can blast through the
enemy?s defenses:

1. f4 e5

2. fxe5
With this second move, White avoids 2.g3 exf4 3.gxf4?? Qh4 checkmate.

2. aes d6
Black is not tempted by 2...Qh4+, which would be adequately countered
by 3.g3, when Black?s Queen must retreat.

3. exd6 Bxd6
Black has sacrificed a pawn so that he can obtain a lead in development.
This type of deliberate sacrifice in the opening is called a gambit.

4. Nc3??

Oops. White didn?t see the threat. He should have played 4.Nf3, which
would develop a piece and prevent ...Qh4+, Black?s next move.

4... Qh4+

5. g3 Qxg3+!!

6. hxg3  Bxg3 checkmate
The final position is shown in Dia-
gram 49. It should now be clear to
you why the King is not safe in his
starting position and why I recom-
mend that you castle as quickly as

There is one more type of trap
Id like you to look at.






















The First Principle: Force


The Cheap Check:
1. e4 c6 4. Nxe4 Nd7
2. d4 d5 5. Qe2 Ngf6
3. Nec3 dxe4 6. Nd6 checkmate

As you can see in Diagram 50, the Black King has no way to get out of
check, and he cannot capture the rude Knight because the pawn on e7 is
pinned by the White Queen. This maneuver is called a Smothered Mate.
Looks great, doesn?t it? Why, then, do I call it a cheap check? Because if
Black sees the threat, White?s fifth move (Qe2) would prove to be a
liability. Let?s say that after 5.Qe2 Black says to himself, ?Aha! I see what
he?s up to. I won?t let him do that to me!? Black then plays 5...Ndf6 while
his Queen guards square d6 and unveils an attack against the d4-pawn.


QUIZ 17. In Diagram 51, it is White?s turn to move. He is tempted
to play 1.Nc4 in spite of the strong threat of 2.Nd6 checkmate. Is
this a good move?





































The defects of White?s fifth move are then clear: White has taken a
defender away from d4 and blocked his Bishop on f1. The moral: Never
make a move with the thought, ?I hope he doesn?t see it.?

The King Plays in the Endgame

Having played all the crushing checkmates described in the preceding
pages, you understand why players castle quickly and hide their Kings.
All the hard work is left to the rest of the army. Unless your opponent
attacks your King, it becomes easy to forget that you even have one.

In the first two phases of a game (the opening and the middlegame),
the King is for the most part a liability. However, in the third phase (the
endgame), the King takes its place as a fighting piece of great power.
Sensing that victory is near, the King steps out of hiding and leads its
remaining army in its last battle. It finally adopts the mantle of responsi-
bility. How can the King afford to step out? Why is the King now safe?

Though beginners may feel intimidated by the endgame, in top-flight
chess endgame skill is very important, and players take every opportunity
to cultivate it. The endgame is a phase in which most of the pieces have
been lost or traded. It stands to reason that once the board has been
cleared of King-eating piranhas, his majesty can safely take a stroll. The
King is particularly safe when only pawns are left. So it pays to always
keep in mind that the King is a powerful piece and that you should bring
the King into play as soon as you can safely do so.

Material Advantage in the Endgame

It?s late at night. You?ve been sitting at the same board for hours, but you
know it?s all going to be worthwhile. You are playing your archenemy and
the game has been going very well for you. Even though your opponent
has traded virtually all his pieces, you are still awhole Queen ahead. ?This

The First Principle: Force


should be easy,? you think. Frustration, however, is going to be your
midnight snack tonight. It turns out that no matter what you do, you just
can?t checkmate his King.

It happens all the time. It?s no use playing a good opening and gaining
a material advantage in the middlegame if you don?t know how to win
from there! With just two endgame strategies up your sleeve, you should
be able to win almost every game if you are ahead by a Rook or more.
These strategies are of great importance simply because the circum-
stances under which you can use them occur so often. I recommend that
you make an effort to learn them as thoroughly as possible.

The two endgames are:

M King and Queen versus lone King.

M@ King and Rook versus lone King.

King and Queen versus Lone King
With practice, the endgame strategy I?m about to describe will become
easy for you, but only if you bear in mind two important facts:

@ White cannot checkmate
Black with the White
Queen alone. White?s King
must trek across the board
and assist in the execution.

M@ Checkmate with a King and
Queen can be accomplished
only at the board?s edge.








From Diagram 52, White pro-
ceeds with the endgame as follows:
1. Qb5
























With this move, White is trapping
the Black King in a ?box? (see Dia-
gram 53).

The box method of checkmat-
ing is easiest, though slightly faster
methods are also possible. The
strategy here is to make the box
smaller and smaller, After White?s
Queen has trapped the Black King
on the back rank, White?s King will
march over and assist the Queen as
DIAGRAM 53. it delivers the death blow.

Meanwhile, Black is still struggling to find a way out:

1. Ke6
If Black plays 1...Kc7, White tightens the noose with 2.Qaé. In this case,
White plays

2. Qc5
and squeezes Black a bit more. White avoided playing 2.Qc6+?, because
a response of 2...Ke5 from Black would allow the Black King more room.
Instead, Black plays

2. ase Kf6
Other possible moves are 2...Kd7 and 3.Qb6, both of which lead to the
same type of play. White?s response is

3. Qd5
Notice that White does not lose track of his goals by uselessly checking
his opponent. Instead, he calmly continues with his space-gaining strat-
egy. There is nothing Black can do. He must give ground.

3. ose Kg6
















The First Principle: Force


White could move his King up at any time, but he continues the
Queen?s siege:

4 Qe5
And Black continues the King?s retreat:
4. tee Kf7

If Black plays 4...Kh6, White would play 5.Qg3, thus trapping the Black
King on the edge of the board. Then White would march his King to f6
and checkmate would follow. In this case, however, White plays

5. Qdé
Now Black is trapped on the last two ranks:

Deane Kg7
He is rapidly running out of breathing room.

6. Qebt
Black is now forced to go to the edge of the board.

6. a. Kh7

If Black plays 6...Kf8, White would respond 7.Qd7, which would then lead
to the same type of play.

7. Qg4
As Diagram 54 shows, White has
achieved the first part of his goal
and the Black King is trapped on
the side of the board. Now that
Black is completely helpless (he
can move his King only to hé, h7, or
hg), White can quietly move his
King across the board to square f6.

7. oe Kh6
8.  Kb2 DIAGRAM 54.























As the King finally starts on its journey, Black plays his only legal move.
8... Kh7 10. Kd4
9. Kc3 Kh8
White must be very careful to avoid a stalemate. For example, 10.Qg6??
would have put a smile on Black?s face.

10. ... Kh7 12. Kf6 Kh7

11. Ke5 Kh8 13. Qg7 checkmate

Practice this endgame as often as you can, and you will find that you'll
master it quickly. Remember, the goal of this simple technique is to avoid
useless checks and drive your opponent?s King to the edge of the board.

King and Rook versus Lone King
Because the Rook is weaker than the Queen, it stands to reason that a
King?Rook alliance will have more difficulty achieving a checkmate. As
with the previous example, White must drive the Black King to the edge
of the board. In this case, however, the task can only be carried out with
the combined efforts of both the King and the Rook.

Diagram 55 shows the starting positions. White makes his move:

1. Kb2
Here are a couple of basic princi-
ples to keep in mind: White should
move his King as close as possible
to the Black King (one square
apart) and only then should he use
his Rook; and Black should try to
keep his King in the middle of the
board, because it is impossible for
White to checkmate him there.

tooo Kd4





















The First Principle: Force


An inferior move is 1...Kc4, to which White would respond 2.Rd1!, trap-
ping the Black King on the a-, b-, and c-files. In this case, White plays

2. Kec2
Note how the White King is taking squares c3 and d3 away from his Black

2. ass Ke4
Once again, 2...Kc4 would have been met by 3.Rd1, and the Black King
would have lost ground faster than necessary. White continues pushing
Black back with his King.

3. Kec3 Ke5
Another possibility for Black is 3...Ke3, though this move would make
White?s task somewhat easier by setting up the sequence 4.Rei+ Kf2
5.Re4 Kf3 6.Kd3. As things are, White?s King is positioned just as well as
Black?s, and it?s time for the White Rook to join in the fight.

4, Kc4 Ke4
If Black played 4...Ke6, White would cut off the Black King with 5.Rb5.
Here, White plays

5. Re1+
A Rook check is always strong when the Kings face off, because the
checked King is thereby forced to relinquish ground.

5. ae Kf5
An interesting moment: White would like to have the Kings face off as
they did a move ago. However, if White plays 6.Kd5, Black could slip
away from the face-off with 6...Kf4.

6. Kd4

By playing his King to d4, White invites Black to step into a face-off
with 6...Kf4 so that White can play 7.Rf1+ and keep forcing Black toward























the edge of the board (see Diagram
56). The following moves would be
7..Kg5 8Ke4d Kg6 9.Ke5 Kg5
10.Rg1+ Kh4 11.Kf5 (as before, the
White King would avoid facing off
with the Black King, waiting for
Black to step into the face-off)
11..Kh3 (Black would have no
choice, because 11...Kh5 12.Rh1 is
checkmate) 12.Kf4 Kh2 13.Rg3
(making a cage) 13...Kh1 14.Kf3
Kh2 15.Kf2 Kh1 16.Rh3 checkmate.

White must avoid 16.Rg2??, which would result in a draw by stalemate.
However, Black ignores the invitation and avoids the face-off:


















6. Kf6

7. ReS
Black is now caught in the small
cage shown in Diagram 57, but he
keeps on struggling:

7. Kg6
White hastens to get his King
closer to Black?s:

8. Ke4

9, Kf4

The First Principle: Force


White must avoid the hasty 9.Rf5+?, which allows Ke6 and increases
Black?s ability to scamper.

9. ase Kf7
The cage would also get smaller with 9...Kg6 10.Rf5.

10. KfS
The White King has taken squares f6 and g6 away from the Black King.

10... Kg7

11. Re7+
The Black King has been successfully forced to the side of the board.
However, the only way that White can put the Black King in checkmate
is to force the Kings to face off. Then a Rook check will produce check-
mate, because the Black King will be unable to go backward or forward
without moving into the White King?s sphere of control. Black?s only hope
is to avoid the face-off with

11... Kfs
A worse move is 11...Kh6, because White would not play 12.Kf6?, leading
to 12...Kh5 13.Kf5 Kh4. After 11...Kh6, White would simply waste a move
with 12.Rd7 (12.Rf? or anywhere else along the 7th rank would be just as
good), and Black would be forced to move his King into the unwanted
face-off situation with 12...Kh5. After White has achieved the face-off,
13.Rh7 would be checkmate.

12. Kf6 Kg8

13. Kg6 Kf8
Black obviously does not want his King to be in front of the White King.
White now steps back a bit and forces Black to walk toward his doom:

14. Re6o Kg8

15. Re8 checkmate
The King?Rook maneuver may seem difficult at first, but the combination
occurs often. Take a little time to master it, and your nights of frustration
will become evenings of glee!























QUIZ 18. In Diagram 58,
can the White King and
Bishop win? Could White
win if you replaced the
Bishop with a Knight?



Preference or Principle: A Fine Line

By now, you know that a Rook has more force than a Knight and that a
Bishop has more force than a pawn. However, you must keep your mind





David Janowski, the stubborn

open enough to recognize situa-
tions in which you should bend
these principles.

It is not at all unusual for play-
ers to become infatuated with a par-
ticular aspect of the game and to
make a point of playing for it in one
contest after another, usually to
their detriment. One example of
this type of mania was seen in the
Grandmaster David Janowski
(1868-1927). Frank Marshall, a
good friend of Janowski, wrote: ?He

The First Principle: Force


had little foibles about the kind of game he liked?his weakness for the
two Bishops was notorious?and he could be tremendously stubborn.
Janowski could follow the wrong path with more determination than any
man I met! He was also something of a dandy and quite vain about his

Janowski loved playing with two Bishops. This love became a liability
because his opponents learned to offer him the two Bishops, but only at
considerable cost in terms of his other pieces! Giving in to temptation led
Janowski to make mistakes, while resisting temptation was frustrating
for the lover of the Bishops. It is small wonder that U.S. players for many
years called the two Bishops the two Jans.

When Less Is More

In many instances in chess, a weaker piece proves to have more force
than a piece with greater numerical value. Diagram 59 is a case in point.
White is to play. Ifit were Black?s move, or ifthe pawn were on any square
other than b7 or d7, White would have a losing position. But here, the
pawn is better than the Rook. That news should come as only a small
surprise. The big surprise is that
after 1.dxc8, White will do better to
promote the pawn to a Rook than to
a Queen, because after 1.dxc8=Q,
Black is stalemated. (Promotion to
anything other than a Queen is a
tactic called underpromotion.) Pro-
moting the pawn to a Rook allows
1...Kb7, resulting in one of the end-
games that you have just learned
how to win. Try playing through
the moves for practice. DIAGRAM 59.






























Generalities are useful in
chess. However, the specifics of a
position determine whether a par-
ticular principle applies. Diagram
60 shows another example of un-
derpromotion. Here, Black is a
Queen ahead, but it is White?s turn
to move. White can promote his
pawn to a Queen, thereby regain-
ing material equality. Instead,
White promotes to the numerically
DIAGRAM 60. inferior Knight, calling check and
forking Black?s King and Queen. After 1.c8=N+ Kb8 2.Nxe7, White is left
with an extra Knight. He promotes his other pawn to a Queen, and the
win is easy.























TEST 10. It is Black?s move and he
would like to get the Knight on {8
into the game. He is considering
1...Ne6 and 1...Ng6. Which move
would you choose?













The First Principle: Force






TEST 11. It is White?s turn to play.
What is White?s best move here?












TEST 12. It is Black?s turn to play.
What is Black?s best move?






















TEST 13. It is White?s turn to play.
What is White?s best move?











TEST 14. It is Black?s move. What
would you do in Black?s position?










The Second
Principle: Time


time. Though some chess games are timed (see ?Chess Timers? in

Chapter One, ?The Evolution of Chess?), the second principle has
nothing to do with clocks. An advantage in time denotes a situation in
which you can bring your pieces to a particular part of the board faster
than your opponent can.

Think about it. Would you rather have your forces huddled on their
starting squares or have them mobilized in the middle of the board, ready
to charge to any needy area?

Let?s put it another way: You are fighting a battle on Mars. If your
forces are still on Earth, you can expect to lose the battle by default. On
the other hand, if your army is just a few thousand miles away, then you
can expect to arrive at the scene in time. Proximity immeasurably in-
creases your chances for victory.

I n this chapter, I?m going to talk about the second principle of chess,

Time in Action

In many ways, the concepts of time and force are similar. Having a time
advantage usually means that you have enough force available to stop an
enemy assault.










In Diagram 61, Black?s army is
nicely mobilized. His Rook on c8
controls the c-file, while his Bishop
and Queen eye the Queenside. It is
White?s turn to move. White might
decide to launch a Kingside attack
by 1.Ng5, threatening Qxh7 check-
mate. Can Black defend himself?

Black can successfully stop
White?s threat of checkmate be-
cause he has time to bring defend-
DIAGRAM 61. ers to the Kingside. Note that
whereas White has only his Queen and the Knight on g5 to attack with,
Black can defend with his pawns on f7, g7, and h7, his Bishop on d7, his
Rook on f8, and his Knights on e7 and e8. Additionally, Black?s King
defends the pawns on h7, g7, and 7, as well as the Rook on f8. After 1.Ng5,
Black can stop the checkmate with either 1...h6 (which also attacks the
White Knight) or 1...Nf6 (which guards h7 and attacks the White Queen).
This latter move gains time because it forces White to move his Queen
out of danger. If White plays 2.Qh4, then 2...Ng6 brings another Black
piece to the Kingside and attacks the White Queen again?resulting in
another gain of time as White is forced to get his Queen out of danger.

Obviously, White?s Kingside attack never has a chance, because he
is outgunned on the Kingside. By gaining time with threats to the White
Queen, Black is able to marshall a Kingside defense. White?s attacking
pieces will be routed.

A time advantage can also refer to an advantage in force that enables
your men to blast through your opponent?s defenses. Take a look at Diagram
62. Look familiar? The principal difference between this diagram and
Diagram 61 is that both the h-pawns are gone. Black no longer has the












The Second Principle: Time




































defensive pawn on h7 and White?s Rook is no longer blocked by the pawn
on h2. As a result, the White Rook joins the attack. The fact that White
has gained an important attacker while Black has lost an important
defender gives White a winning advantage. After 1.Qh5, the dual threats
of 2.Qh7+ and 2.Qh8+ will lead to checkmate.

QUIZ 19. In Diagram 63, it is White?s turn to play. Whose attack

is faster?



The Attack of the Berserker

Beginning chess players tend to want to checkmate their opponent as
quickly as possible. Like berserkers?ancient Scandinavian warriors who
worked themselves up into battle frenzies?they often move out two
pieces and charge the enemy position. Ifthe assault results in checkmate,
then well and good. If their opponent fends off the attacking pieces,
capturing them or pushing them back to their own territory, then likely



as not, berserkers will bring out two more men and charge again. Waves
of attack continue until one side or the other wins the game.

The berserker will lose many games until he realizes that two men
are rarely enough to overpower the whole enemy army. Don?t be a

berserker. Instead, get all your pieces out and go after your opponent with
everything you've got.

One Key to a Time Advantage

Development?the process of moving one?s pieces from their starting
posts to new and more effective positions?is an extremely important way
to measure time. Let?s have a look at the first few moves of a typical

1. e4
White?s move controls the important d5 central square and frees the
Queen and f1-Bishop.

too. e5
Black is also fighting for the center! He puts pressure on square d4 and
frees his f8-Bishop and Queen.

2. Nf
White develops a Knight. On g1, the Knight threatened nothing and
controlled only three squares (e2, {3, and h3). Now the Knight counters
Black?s control of square d4, attacks Black?s e5-pawn, and has eight
squares (el, g1, h2, h4, g5, e5, d4, and d2) within its sphere of control.
Without a doubt, White has improved the position of this Knight.

2. awe Nc6
Black also develops his Knight. It previously controlled only squares a6,
c6, and d7. Now it eyes eight squares: b8, d8, e7, e5, d4, b4, a5, and a7.

The Second Principle: Time


Black continues to put pressure on the d4 central square and also guards
his e5-pawn!

3. Bcd
White increases the sphere of control of this Bishop from five squares?
e2, d3, c4, b5, and a6?to a hefty ten squarés?f1, e2, d3, b5, a6, a2, b3, d5,
e6, and f7. (Remember, a piece is not considered to control the square it
sits on.) White also continues to fight for the center by jabbing at d5. Other
virtues of the 3.Bc4 move: It makes Black?s King uncomfortable because
the Bishop is now eyeing the delicate f7-pawn, and it allows White to castle
on his next move if he wants to.

3. eee Bc5S
Black also makes his Bishop stronger, and he puts a third man on the d4
brigade. (The Knight on c6, the pawn one5, and the Bishop on c5allattack
square d4.) Black intends to move the g& Knight so that he can clear the
back rank and castle. Note how both sides have avoided moving their
Queens so that other pieces cannot attack them and gain time.

So far, both sides have moved logically, steering undeveloped pieces
toward the center. They will not consider launching an attack until their
Kings are safely castled and the rest of their men have been brought out.
What if White now moved his c4-Bishop again, playing 4.Be2? Is that a
good move? No. It is weak, because it moves an already developed piece
when other men are begging to be brought into the fight!

One Move per Piece
This brings us to a very useful principle:

Don?t move a piece twice in the opening.
Only when all your pieces are developed should you move one of them
a second time, in an effort to build up a decisive attack. When you move
the same piece twice in the opening, you lose time. To White?s move of










4.Be2, Black would reply 4...Nf6. As
Diagram 64 shows, Black would
then have brought out three
pieces (not counting his pawns) to
White?s two!

This gaff is called losing a
tempo (one unit of time?the plural
is tempt). You should make every
effort to avoid situations that lead
to the loss of tempi. The following
game example should be enough to
DIAGRAM 64. serve as a warning to those of you
who may be feeling that the loss of a tempo or two is unimportant and
hardly worth worrying about:

1. e4 d5
Black?s move is called the Center Counter Defense. Though it attacks
White?s pawn on e4 and frees the Queen and the c8&Bishop, this move is
generally considered inferior because it leads to a loss of time. Next,
White plays

2. exd5
Is he violating the principle of not moving a piece twice in the opening?
Yes, but in this case White has a good reason. By capturing Black?s pawn,
White temporarily wins material (a pawn is 1 point). Not wanting to be
behind in material so early in the game, Black will also move to capture
a pawn, thereby violating the principle of not bringing out the Queen too
early! With the early development of Black?s Queen, White will regain the
loss of time that resulted from moving his pawn twice.














2. ase Qxd5
The material balance is once again even.
3. Nc3

The Second Principle: Time


White?s Knight moves to a nice central post, from which it controls the
e4 and d5 squares and increases its own radius of power. White also gains
time by attacking the Black Queen, which must move again. You see now
why you should not develop a Queen too early.

Black?s reaction is

3. owe Qe5+?
Black thinks he is attacking with his Queen. Though a check is always
tempting, leaving the Queen in the center leads to a further loss of time.
A safer square for the Black Queen would have been a5, where White?s
pieces could not immediately attack her. White plays

4. Be2
stopping the check and developing the Bishop.
4... Nc6é

Black has finally developed a second piece! White does not give him time
to do it again:

5. Nf3
With this move, White brings out another piece and gains more time,
because Black?s Queen is now under fire. Black responds with another
horrible move:

5. ane Qc5?
He had to move his Queen, but he should have made an effort to get away
from the White pieces. 5...Qa5 was called for, but even this move leaves
Black way behind in development.

6. d4
White gains more time by another attack on the poor Black Queen!
Moreover, the pawn move is worthwhile because it helps to control the
e5 central square and frees the c1-Bishop.

6... Qd6

7. Nb5!



With such a big lead in development, White can justify moving the same
piece twice. Anyway, this play does not result in a loss of tempo, because
Black must once again move his tormented Queen:

7. ane Qb4+
Black tries to find sanctuary in a check. A quiet move like 7...Qd8 would
have allowed 8.Bf4, developing the White Bishop to an aggressive post.
The attack on the c7-pawn would then leave Black helpless to prevent a
loss of material. White plays

8. Bd2
A move like 8.c3 would also stop the check, but White consistently, and
correctly, brings another piece?rather than a pawn?into play.

8. Qxb2
Black takes a pawn, miserably opening the way for 9.Nxc7+ followed by
10.Nxa8. White declines the easy win and instead opts to heap more
indignities upon the Black Queen:

9.  Bc3!

As you can see in Diagram 65, the Queen is now trapped. White?s
whole army is ready for battle, while the lazy Black forces are still asleep
at home. Black gives up, or, in offi-
cial terms, he resigns.






Going for a Gambit

At times, one side (more often
White) opens the game with a gam-
bit. Agambit is a voluntary sacrifice
of a piece or pawn in the opening,
with the idea of a lead in develop-
ment and a subsequent attack as
















The Second Principle: Time


Let?s have a look at a common gambit.

1. e4 e5

2. d4
Having freed the f1-Bishop with his first move, White now frees his other
Bishop. The threat of dxe5 and the loss of a pawn forces Black to react:

2. we exd4
Black has moved his pawn twice in the opening, hoping that White will
now play 3.Qxd4 so that he can respond with 3...Nc6, thereby developing
a piece and attacking the White Queen. This strategy would gain time for
Black, because White would be forced to move his Queen a second time.
However, White has no intention of regaining his lost material:

3. c3!?
Black now moves the pawn a third time!

3. oe dxc3
Black feels compelled to prevent White from capturing the pawn with
cxd4. He is obviously breaking the rules. However, White is also going
against conventional wisdom by losing material right at the beginning of
the game!

4. Bc4
White ignores the impudent pawn and instead rushes to develop his
pieces as quickly as possible.

4... cxb2
Black moves the pawn a fourth time! However, this move makes sense.
Even if White captures the pawn, Black will still be two points ahead.

5. Bxb2
Now White must take the pawn or the pawn will capture the Rook on al
and turn into a Queen!









































Let?s summarize this position (see Diagram 66). White has a substan-
tial lead in development. He hopes to use that lead to blow Black off the
board. For his part, Black is two pawns (2 points) ahead. If he can now
develop his pieces and catch up with White?s development, Black will
have a free-and-clear material advantage.

As is typical of such gambits, the battle will rage fiercely for the next
few moves. White will try hard to pick a fight and kill Black by dint of
superior mobilization. Black will ignore White?s provocations as much as
possible and get his forces out as quickly as he can. A tough and
interesting battle will result. You'll find typical plays for similar gambit
positions in Chapter Six, ?Annotated Games.?

QUIZ 20. In Diagram 67, it is Black?s move. He is already a pawn

ahead and is just dying to eat the White pawn on a2. Would
capturing the pawn be a good idea?



The Second Principle: Time


Discovering Positional Chess

In the early 1800s, people played chess in one of two simple ways: Either
they attacked or they defended. The year 1857 saw the unveiling of anew
strategy. That was the year that Paul Morphy (1837-84) of New Orleans
won the first American Chess Congress. On the strength of that success,
he decided to go to Europe to challenge the world?s greatest players. One
year later, he had defeated everyone who was brave enough to accept his
challenge. Clearly the best player in the world, he returned home to New
Orleans and retired from chess. In his final years, he withdrew from
society and suffered delusions of persecution. He would eat food prepared
only by his mother, and at night he would form a large circle on the
ground with women?s shoes and dance around them! He died ofa stroke
at age 47, while taking a bath.
What made Morphy a superior
chess player? Morphy was the first
player to appreciate the value of
development. While his opponents
would bring out two or three pieces
and start a berserker-style attack,
Morphy would quietly defend
against their threats, develop his
whole army, and then shatter their
defenses with his greater force.


Paul Morphy, development genius.



Using a Time Advantage

An advantage in development is only a temporary advantage. If, after
developing all your pieces, you find yourself with a lead in development,
you must attack with great verve and try to make use of the superior force
at your disposal.

In Diagram 68, Black has a terrible position. His King is still in the
center and most of his army is sitting at home. White, on the other hand,
has done everything right. His
King is safely castled, and, as a re-
sult, he is able to use his Rook to
guard his strong, cramping (re-
stricting) center pawn on e5. All of
White?s army is developed and is
fighting for the critical central

Because of his enormous lead
in development, White should try
zh to burst through Black?s pawn posi-
DIAGRAM 68. tion and get at the Black King. In

line with this strategy, White
charges into enemy territory, secure in the knowledge that the greater
force he can mobilize should prove decisive:

1. Ng5!

White threatens to win a pawn by 2.Nxh7 (the Bishop on d3 would guard
the Knight) or 2.Qf3. Black will have difficulty defending his pawn on f7.
Here?s one possible play sequence: 1...h5? (which guards the h7-pawn but
wastes time and gives White a free hand to do anything else that crosses
his mind) 2.Qf8 Nf5 (2...f63.Nxe6 would cost the lady) 3.Bxf5 exf5 4.exd6+-
(discovered check by the Rook on el) and Black is dead.






















The Second Principle: Time


This scenario shows what can happen when a Rook comes into play
down an open file. (An open file is one that is free of pawns.) Rooks love
open files. Position your Rooks on open files and watch your opponent?s
position fry!

Black tries an alternative play:

1... h6
A logical move. Black gets his pawn out of danger and gains time by
attacking the White Knight on g5. Under normal circumstances, this
move might prove effective, but White?s lead in development is so great
that White?s army manages to come crashing through:

2. Nxeé6!!

As you can see in Diagram 69, White is offering up a sacrifice in order to
tear down the protective wall around Black?s King. Though White will
lose his Knight (3 points) for a mere pawn (1 point), he feels that opening
up the Black King will eventually enable him to checkmate it. Because
the King has an unlimited value, sacrificing a Knight (and any number of
other pieces) for a King always turns out to be a great trade! Black has
no choice but to accept the offering:

2. we fxe6
White threatens to capture the
Black Queen with his Knight, so
the rude horse must be taken out
of action. White responds with

3. Qh5+
Notice how all of White?s moves are
forcing moves. By playing in this
fashion, White denies Black the op-
tion of developing more of his




























pieces. Instead, Black is reduced to
reacting to White?s threats.

3. we g6
Forced (3...Ng6 loses the Knight).

4. Bxg6+ Nxg6

5. Qxg6+ Ke7

Do you see how White can win
from this position? Take some time
to study Diagram 70 and try to fig-
ure out the plays.

6. exd6+
DIAGRAM 70. This move blasts open the e-file and
allows the White Rook on e1 to join in the attack. This teamwork is an
important concept. White?s attack is successful because he has many
pieces that can work together to bully the Black King. (An even prettier
way of opening the e-file would be the sacrifice 6.Nd5+!! exd5 7.exd6
double check and checkmate! Notice how strong a double check can be.
White would attack the Black King with both his Rook and the d6-pawn.
Such a double attack often allows no escape.)

6... Kxd6












QUIZ 21. If you can win a pawn but your King is in the center and
you are behind in development, should you:

@ Go after the material.
@ Bring your Queen into combat.

@ Ignore the pawn, develop your forces, and try to castle as
quickly as possible.




The Second Principle: Time


If Black plays 6...cxd6 instead, White would have the pleasant choice
between 7.Qxe6 checkmate or 7.Nd5 checkmate. The latter is possible
because of the pin on the e-pawn by the Rook on el. As it is, White can
still deliver the death blow:

7. Rxe6 checkmate
Mission accomplished. The King is dead; long live the King!


TEST 15. It is White?s turn to play.
White wants to attack the Black
King, so he plays 1.Qf3. Should
Black be concerned with White?s


















TEST 16. This is the position after
1.e3 e5 2.Qh5 (attacking the e5-
pawn) 2...Nc6 3.Bc4. White is al
ready attacking and threatens to
win right away with 4.Qxf7 check-
mate. Is it time for Black to panic?




















The Third Principle:

o far, I have discussed winning by vicious attacks and winning by

the more mundane (but highly effective) method of simply captur-

ing all your opponent?s pieces. Now it?s time to address another
method: squeezing your opponent to death. To squeeze an opponent, you
must first acquire a significant advantage in space.

When you have an advantage in space, you control more territory than
your opponent. Your pieces have more squares to choose from than the
enemy pieces, which are severely restricted in their movements. By
applying the principle of space, you can win a game by taking so much
space away from your opponent that all he can do is pace back and forth
in his little cell, waiting for you to proceed with the execution.

The Space Count System

The space count system enables you to count the squares your pieces
and pawns control to determine whether you or your opponent controls
more territory. At the beginning of a game, the board is more or less
divided in half (see Diagram 71 on the next page). White is said to own
the squares in the al-a4-h4-h1 rectangle. Black owns everything in the
a8-a5-h5-h8 rectangle. The space count system kicks in when one of you
goes beyond these ?personal? squares and starts to take control of
territory in the enemy?s domain.





































Let?s look at an example from the game between Yasser Seirawan and
Bruno Belloti, played in Lugano in 1988. In Diagram 72, who controls more
space? Let?s count the squares to find out. White?s Bishop breaks into
Black?s territory on g5 and hé: two squares. His Knight on c3 attacks
squares b5 and d5: two more squares for a total space count of 4 so far.
(Squares e4 and a4 don?t count, because they are already considered part
of White?s territory. We are interested only in squares beyond the 4th
rank). The White Queen hits d5 and h5: two more squares, which brings
the total space count to 6. That?s it for White?s pieces.

Now we look at the White pawns. The pawn on d5 controls cé6 and e6.
The total is now 8. (Remember, a man does not control the square it sits
on, so this pawn does not control d5.) The only other man that stabs into
Black?s territory is the pawn on e4, which controls d5 and f5. Adding 2 to
8 gives us a total space count of 10.

Next, we'll count Black?s squares. His Rook on a8 hits a big three
enemy squares: a4, a3, and a2. His Knight on f6 hits two: e4 and g4. So far
we have a total space count of 5. No other Black pieces can lash out at
squares in White?s territory, so let?s turn our attention to his pawns. The

The Third Principle: Space


only pawn that can stake a claim in White?s space is the pawn on c5, which
controls b4 and d4. Black?s total is 7. Therefore, White has a space count
advantage of 3.

Of course, space is just one of the factors to be considered when
evaluating this position. Other factors are

@ White's King has moved and is thus unable to castle.
@ White is a pawn (1 point) ahead.

M@ Black has one pawn island, whereas White has two.
(Pawn islands are described in Chapter Five, ?The Fourth
Principle: Pawn Structure.?)

@ After Black castles and moves his Rook to the b-file, both
of his Rooks will sit on half-open files and be able to attack
the White pawns on a2 and b2. Neither of White?s Rooks
will sit on equivalently active files.

In this game, both sides had factors working in their favor. Because of
White?s space advantage, I was glad to be playing White from this position.







QUIZ 22. In Diagram 73,
who is ahead in the space
count? What is the count
for each side?

















The Invincible Capablanca

Though most people love to look at the games of the great attacking
masters, some of the most successful players in history have been the
quiet positional players. These players slowly grind you down by taking
away your space, tying up your pieces, and leaving you with virtually
nothing to do! Ofall the great positional players, probably the most feared
was the Cuban genius José Raul Capablanca (1888-1942), a man consid-
ered in his prime to be virtually unbeatable. Possessing a simple and clear
style, Capablanca was particularly famous for his endgame skill. During
the first two phases of a game, he was content to gain some advantage in
space, convert it into a small material edge (one pawn ahead), and then
trade pieces. In the endgame, he would convert his extra pawn into a
Queen and win the game easily.

After winning the World Championship from Emanuel Lasker in 1921,
Capablanca lost his title to Alexander Alekhine in 1927 because of over-
confidence. He really thought nobody could beat him, so he failed to
prepare properly for the contest.
Though Capablanca continued to
play in tournaments in the hopes of
getting another shot at Alekhine,
the new World Champion made a
point of never allowing him a re
turn match. Capablanca?s final
chess event was the Chess Olym-
piad of 1939, where he played first
board for the Cuban team. Three
years later, he died of a stroke in
New York.


José Capablanca, chess genius.

The Third Principle: Space


How to Use a Space Advantage

Aspace advantage makes your pieces more mobile than your opponent's.
Let?s see how Rooks, Bishops, and Knights can make use of extra space.

Rooks and Open Files
To make maximum use of your Rooks, you must understand the follow-
ing principle:

Rooks need open files to be effective.

A Rook reaches its full potential (in terms of square control) only on
open files or ranks. Because the Rook is hemmed in at the start of the
game, your task is usually to maneuver it to an open file.

Here is an example from the game between José Capablanca and
Karel Treybal, which was played in Carlsbad in 1929. In Diagram 74, White
has an enormous advantage in space. He increases this advantage with
his next move:

1. b6
Now Black is forced back even further. Notice how he can move only on
the 7th and 8th ranks, whereas
White has the first six ranks as his
stomping ground. If you do a space
count for this position, you'll find
that the count for White is

M@ Knight: 2 (e5 and g5).
@ Bishop: 3 (f5, b5, and a6).

M Queen: 5 (c5, a5, a6, a7, and

M Rook on h2: 2 (h5 and hé).

Pawns: 11. DIAGRAM 74.























The total is 23!
The space count for Black is considerably less:

M Queen: 1 (f4).
M@ Pawns: 4.

Just 5 in all.

The Black Queen is under attack, so Black plays

oo. Qbs

2. Ral
Though White?s advantage in territory is huge, he still has the problem
of how to break through. The first thing White does is place his Rooks
on the only open file (al-a8) to prevent the Black Rooks from taking over
the a-file. After White has control of the a-file, he can make a decisive
penetration from there.

2. on Rc&
Black is so squeezed that there is nothing for him to do. White can take
all the time he wants, without fear of a Black counterattack.

3. Qb4
With this move, Capablanca demonstrates another principle:

When placing your Rooks and Queen on an open file, try to lead
with the Rooks to ensure the safety of the Queen.
As in the opening, the Queen should follow the rest of its army. With this
in mind, the point of White?s move becomes clearer: The Queen steps out
of the way to allow the Rooks to penetrate into Black?s territory.

3. ane Rhd8&

4. Ra7

The Rook is in! White noticed that the weak link in Black?s position is the
pawn on b7, which is not guarded by another pawn. White will therefore
start to bring as much of his army as possible to bear on this pawn.

4. eo Kfs

The Third Principle: Space


Poor Black can only go back and forth, hoping that White won?t find a
way to lower the boom on his position.

5.  Rh1

Reinforcements! This Rook will join its twin on the open a-file.
5. ans Bes 7. Rta4_ kf8
6. Rhal Kg8 8. Qa3

As shown in Diagram 75, White has completed his domination of the
open file. The difference between the range of possible activity for
White?s Queen and Rooks and the
range for Black?s is very apparent.
The rest of this game is not
related to the topic of how to make
maximum use of Rooks, but I will
include it anyway, as an illustration
of Capablanca?s style. The game
also serves to point out some of the
problems of a space disadvantage.
8... Kg8

9. Kg3
Secure in the knowledge that Black DIAGRAM 75.
can do nothing, White treads water to lull the opponent into a sense of




















9, Bd7 12. Kg3 Kf8
10. Kh4 Kh8 13. Kg2 Bes
11. Qal Kg8 14. Nd2

Finally, White moves into action! Remember, White?s target is the pawn
on b7. To increase the pressure, he brings his Knight to a5, from where
the Knight will work with the a7-Rook to try to devour the pawn.



14... Bd7 16. Nad Nd8
15. Nb3 Re8

Just in time, Black manages to defend the pawn. Can White attack it with
anything else?

17. Ba6!!
Most effective! In Diagram 76, you can see that White is attacking the
b7-pawn again and now threatens simply to win it by Bxb7. But wait a
minute! Isn?t White?s Bishop on a6
vulnerable to the b7-pawn?

17... bxa6

Black has a temporary advantage in
force. White counters with

18. Rxd7

White has recovered material and
threatens to capture a pawn with
Rxh7. If Black guards against the
threat with 18...Kg8, then 19.Nb3
would open upa battery on the a-file
DIAGRAM 76. against the weak pawn on a6, which
would prove undefendable. If White eats this pawn, his material advan-
tage should decide the game. So Black decides to play

18... Re7
This allows a snappy finish.

19. Rxd8+!
The simpler 19.Rxe7 Kxe7 20.Nb3 would have captured the a6-pawn and
thus would have been good enough for an eventual win. However, the
move played is even better, White is setting himself up to use the Knight
fork, which I described in Chapter Two, ?The First Principle: Force.?



















The Third Principle: Space


19... Rxd8

20. Nxc6é
White takes a pawn and threatens both of Black?s Rooks and his Queen
simultaneously! Black gives up here, because 20...Qc8 21.Nxe7 Kxe7
22.Rxa6 would leave White with a two-pawn advantage and an easy win.
From 22.Rxa6, play might have continued 22...Rd7 23.Ra7 Rxa7 24.Qxa7+
Qd7 25.c6 Qxa7 26.bxa7, followed by 27.a8=Q. Then the extra Queen
would have led to a quick checkmate.

Congratulations! Perhaps without even realizing it, you have just
played the game ofa World Champion. You will find that playing over the
games of great players (which are documented in countless books) is
both instructive and fun. Not only will you come to appreciate the artistry
of chess, but you will gain insight into how the Grandmasters win their
games, and in time, you can hope to emulate their methods.

Bishops and Open Diagonals
Like Rooks, Bishops don?t like to be hemmed in by pawns. They need
open diagonals if they are to reach their full potential. Bearing the needs
of your Bishops in mind, you
should try to place your pawns and
your Bishops on squares of oppo-
site colors.

In Diagram 77, itis White?s turn
to play. White has three significant







M Hehasalarge advantage in
space. (The space count is
14 to 4in White?s favor.)
















@ Black has a weak pawn on b7. A pawn is considered weak
if it lies on an open file and cannot be defended by another
pawn. I will go into more detail about pawn strengths and
weaknesses in Chapter Five, ?The Fourth Principle: Pawn


@ The White Bishop is much more active than its counter-
part on d7. White?s Bishop, free of all obstructions, is
known as a ?good Bishop.? Black?s pathetic creature on
d7, blocked by its own pawns, is known as a ?bad Bishop.?

Because it is White?s turn to move, he can use a tactic called the
double attack?a maneuver in which one player attacks two points in
the enemy?s position simultaneously. Can you find White?s move?

The answer is 1.Qb1!, by which the Queen and Bishop bear down on
the pawn on h7 and the Queen attacks the pawn on b7. Black has no way
to defend both pawns, so he must allow White to capture one of them.

The Fianchettoed Bishop: One way to place a Bishop on the longest
possible diagonal is to fianchetto it. A White Bishop is said to be






















fianchettoed if it is placed on g2 or
b2. A Black Bishop is fianchettoed
if it is placed on g7 or b7.

In Diagram 78, the White
fianchettoed Bishop on g2is clearly
superior to the Black Bishop on d7.
With his Bishop searing down the
h1-a8 diagonal, White threatens to
penetrate Black?s position with
Ras. Another threat is 1.Rd1, by
which White pins the Black Bishop
The Third Principle: Space


on d7 and wins it. In the diagram, it is Black?s move, but the following
factors make his life difficult:

M@ His lack of space?the space count is 28 to 2 against him.

@ His inferior Bishop.

Mm The White Rook?s control of an open file, by means of

which White threatens to penetrate Black?s position.

Black?s best move appears to be

1. Bc8

This play puts the Bishop on a safer square and stops any pins on the
d-file. However, after

2. Qxd8 Rxd8

3. Ra8
White creates a winning pin on the 8th rank. Giving in to the inevitable,
Black plays

3. wee Kfg

If Black instead protects his Rook with 3...Rf8, White would create a
zugzwang position with 4.Bcé6!. (Zugzwang is a German word for a situa-
tion in which one would like to do nothing. However, the rules of the
game state that you must make a move when it is your turn.) Black would
be forced to play, even though anything he does will actually hurt his
position. After 3...Rf8 4.Bc6, Black would have to give up material. Let?s
pause to examine all his possible replies:

@ 4...Kh8 5.Bb7 Bxb7 6.Rxf8 checkmate.

M 4...Rd8, which transposes into the game, returning to the
main line.

M@ 4...Re8 5.Bxes.

M 4...Bb7 5.Rxf8+ Kxf8 6.Bxb7, which puts White a Bishop



M@ 4...Bd7 5.Rxf8+ and 6.Bxd7.
M@ 4...Ba6 5.Rxaé.

@ 4...b55.cxb5, which leaves Black with the same problems
as before.

M@ 4...f6 5.exf6 (5.2xf6 is also good) 5...Kf7 6.Ke4! Rd8 7.Ke5
Rfg 8.Kd6 Rd8+ 9.Kc7. The Bishop on c8 is a goner.

The last option is a good illustration of the power of a King in an
endgame. After enough pieces have been traded, the King becomes quite
a strong piece!

After this interesting diversion, let?s go back to the position that
existed after 3...Kf8 (which you can see in Diagram 79).

4. Bb7!

White pins the Black Bishop. If Black does nothing to unpin his poor
Bishop, White will simply take it and be ahead by 3 points.

4... Bxb7

5. Rxd8+
Now White is ahead by 2 points
(Bishop = 3 points, Rook = 5). The
Rook?s power is clearly shown after
the following moves:

5. lee Ke7

6. Rh8
This is a greedy Rook!























The Third Principle: Space


6 a. Bc6 9, h7 Bd7
7. Rxh7  Kf8s8 10. Rb8
8. Rh8+ Ke7
followed by
11. h8=Q

for an easy win.

The Knight as Advance Scout

Knights are not long-range pieces like Bishops and Rooks, as illustrated
in Diagram 80. Here, both minor pieces are in a corner. (Remember,
Bishops and Knights are called minor pieces, whereas Rooks and Queens
are called major pieces.) From its corner position on al, the Bishop
controls a hefty seven squares. The poor Knight on hi cannot compete
in terms of space count: It controls only two squares.

Does that mean Bishops are better than Knights? No, it just means
that you must move your Knight to an advanced square if you want it to
reach its potential. To demonstrate,
let?s relocate that unfortunate
Knight from h1 to the e5 central
square. Now the Knight controls
eight squares, four of which are in
the enemy camp and therefore
qualify as space-count squares. If
the Knight penetrates deeper into
Black?s territory (say, to e6), the
Knight still controls only eight
squares, but six of them are now in
the enemy camp. DIAGRAM 80.























Bearing these strengths and
weaknesses in mind, our battle cry
for Knights should be ?Forward!
Ever forward!? Because of the
Knight?s unique ability to jump
over other pieces, it does not need
to open up the battle lines to strut
its stuff. Give your Knights an as-
signment in an advanced outpost
and they will wreak havoc on the
enemy at every opportunity.
DIAGRAM 81. Here is an example. What is the
space count in Diagram 81? When you figure it out, you realize that
Black?s position is very bad. The lopsided space count (a crushing 20 to
6) leaves Black with very little room. In particular, note the difference
between the Knight and Bishop. The White Knight is firmly entrenched
on e6 and is single-handedly eating into Black?s position. Black?s ?bad
Bishop? is hopelessly blocked by its own pawns and reduced to inactivity.

To win this game, White needs only to penetrate through Black?s wall
of pawns with his Rook and Queen. How can he do this? Refer to the
discussion of Rooks earlier in this chapter, where I stressed the impor-
tance of giving your Rooks open files. Remember, you should always try
to increase the activity of your pieces!

In Diagram 81, it is White?s turn to play. From this position the best
move is

1. b4!

Shame on you if you wanted to play 1.Nxc7, because after 1...Kxc7, you
would have managed to trade your wonderful Knight for Black?s
wretched Bishop. Notice that the point count?the measure of force?
would have remained even after such a trade.
















The Third Principle: Space


The superior 1.b4 immediately gives the White Rook more scope and
also threatens to capture the pawn on c5 with 2.bxc5. If Black defends his
c5-pawn with 1...b6, the pawn on a6 becomes vulnerable to capture by the
White Queen, with 2.Qxa6. Black instead answers with

Tho cxb4
to which White replies

2. Qxb4
Now the White Queen, backed up by the Rook on bl, attacks the b7-pawn.
Because 2...Kc8 would lose horribly to 3.Qxb7+ Kd7 4.Qxc7+ Ke8 5.Qd8
checkmate, Black must advance his b7-pawn and hope for the best:

2. ue b6
Now White can maneuver to capture the pawn on a6 or, if he wishes, the
pawn on bé6. In Diagram 82, can you see how he would win these pawns?

To win the a6-pawn, White uses the fork tactic, discussed in Chapter
Two, ?The First Principle: Force.? The fork is accomplished by

3. Qad4+
which mounts a simultaneous attack on both the Black King on d7 and
the pawn on a6. Black then plays

3. us Kc8
because 3...Ke7 would lose the
Black Bishop, which has nothing
guarding it, to 4.Nxc7.

4. Qxa6+ Kd7
If Black plays 4...Kb8 instead,
White would be able to win in sev-
eral ways. One method would be
5.Rb3 Qd7 6.Ra3, followed by Qa8
checkmate. As it is, White plays

5. Qb7 DIAGRAM 82.























The White Queen and the Knight can now launch a combined attack on
the Bishop on c7.

5. awe Ke8
Black would prefer to move his King to d8, but the impudent White Knight
won't allow him to.

6. Qc8+ Ke7

7. Qxc7+ Kes
Black would like to run away with 7...Kf8, but the White Knight controls
square f8, too!

8. Qd8 checkmate

Now look back at Diagram 82. You can see that 3.Qa4+ is a very strong
move. However, I did say that White has the option of capturing the
b6-pawn instead of the a6-pawn. To make this capture, White plays

3. Nxc7
White does not relish the idea of trading his wonderful Knight, but this
move is a good demonstration of a basic principle:

Destroy the defender and the target will fall!
In this case, destroying the Black Bishop leads to the capture of the
b6-pawn. As well as capturing a pawn (1 point), White is also enabling his
Rook and Queen to decisively penetrate Black?s position. Black has no
choice but to play

3. oes Kxc7
or White would simply go back to e6 and be 3 points ahead.

4. Qxb6+ Kd7

5. Qa7+
The White Queen steps away from the b-file to allow the Rook to charge

Btw Ke8

6. Rb8 checkmate

The Third Principle: Space



QUIZ 23. Placing your pawns on the same color squares as your
Bishop is:

m@ A good idea, because all your pawns can be defended by
the Bishop.

m@ A bad idea, because the pawns block the Bishop and
therefore reduce its potential sphere of activity.




As it turned out, capturing either the a6-pawn or the b6-pawn led to a
win. But because you have to work so hard to get your Knights into enemy
territory, think twice before trading them.

Memorization versus Understanding

I was just 13, and my opponent, also a young boy, was making his first
moves very quickly. It was obvious that he had memorized this particular
opening and was repeating the moves of some famous Grandmaster.
Cautiously, I picked my way through his opening ?minefield? and was
only slightly behind when the middlegame started. He finally began to
slow down, taking more time to think over his moves. ?At least we?re out
of the book now, and he?s on his own,? I thought with a good deal of relief.
The battle was joined and I needed to concentrate.

Ten moves later my opponent resigned. It became obvious that he
had a good memory but understood little about the principles of chess.
Left to his own devices, his game fell apart remarkably quickly.

I have played this type of game repeatedly throughout my career. So
many players start out by thinking that memorization is the key to
success. Take my word for it: A good memory is useful, but without a firm
knowledge of chess fundamentals, you are doomed to constant defeat.



How to Gain a Space Advantage
in the Opening
Rather than waste your time memorizing openings, you will do better to

keep yourself fresh and play every opening move with particular goals in
mind. With every turn you must ask yourself whether you are

@ Acquiring superior force in some part of the board.
HM Gaining a lead in development.

@ Improving your pawn structure (discussed in Chapter
Five, ?The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure?).

M Gaining space.
Let?s see how these questions help in actual opening play. In the com-
mentary, I am speaking from White?s viewpoint.

1. e4
This move gives me a space count of 5 (the f1-Bishop controls b5 and a6,
the Queen controls h5, and the pawn controls d5 and f5) and frees two of
my pieces. I could gain an advantage in development if my opponent is
not careful.

1. on Nf6
He is attacking my e4-pawn! That?s a frisky move for Black to play. I could
just defend my pawn with 2.Nc3, but after 2...e5 I would not have made
any significant gain in time. I?ll try to punish him for bringing his Knight
ahead of his pawns.

2. e5
By attacking his Knight, I force him to move it again, so we will both have
moved the same piece twice. However, I?m hoping that his Knight will be
more vulnerable in the middle of the board. It?s interesting that I am still
racking up only 2 points of space count with this pawn. No matter how

The Third Principle: Space


deeply a pawn goes into an opponent?s position, it can never control more
than two squares.

2. we Ne4?2
What on earth is he doing with his Knight? Surely he doesn?t expect to
beat me with this lone piece. I'll attack the Knight again. Either he will
have to let me take it, which will give me an advantage in material, or he
will have to keep moving it, which will give me an advantage in both time
and space.

3. d3
With one move, I attack his Knight and free my Bishop on cl. I learned
long ago that moves like 3.Bd3 are bad, because they block my own
d2-pawn, which in turn blocks my c1-Bishop. I certainly don?t want to
entomb my own pieces!

3. oa Nc5
No choice. He can?t go to d6 or {6 because of my pawn; ¢5 is covered by
my c1-Bishop. I suspect that Black is not familiar with the concept of time.
Moving his Knight again and again is clearly in violation of this principle.

4. d4
I?ve moved this pawn twice, but the play is justified because it forces him
to move his Knight yet again. Anyway, the pawn on d3 was blocking my

Bishop on fl.
4. a Na6
5. Nf3

Let?s sum up this position. Black has moved his Knight four times. I have
managed to advance both of my center pawns. As a result, I now have a
significant advantage both in development and in space (the space count
is 10 to 1).

This brief demonstration shows the importance of bringing out your
pieces and pawns quickly. They help you fight for the territory you need
to move about freely.










QUIZ 24. After 1.e4 e6 2.d4,
we atrive at the position in
Diagram 83. Should Black
now play 2...d6 or 2...d5?














The Role of Defender

Make no mistake about it: Everyone likes to attack. However, even the
best players sometimes find themselves in an inferior position that re-
quires hours of calm, defensive play. In the top levels of modern chess,
every Grandmaster knows how to attack and defend with equal skill. That
was not always the case. In the early 1800s, players virtually lived for
attack. They would happily sacrifice everything for the chance of a nice
checkmate. Though they often succeeded, success was due more to the
lackluster defensive play of the time than it was to their attacking skills.
For example, an unspoken rule stated that if your opponent sacrificed a
piece, you were duty-bound to capture it, even if the capture signalled
your own bloody doom.

This lemming-like obedience came to an end with the rise of the first
official World Champion, Wilhelm Steinitz (1836-1900). In the British
Chess Magazine of January 1892, James Cunningham described Steinitz
as follows: ?He is a man of great physical vigour, and possesses a
well-preserved constitution. Everything about him denotes power rather

The Third Principle: Space



than grace, strength rather than
beauty. His features are rugged in
outline and his face is the face of a
man of action rather than a man of

Steinitz started out playing in
the berserker style of the day, but
he eventually came up with several
new and profound positional ideas,
which led him to drastically alter
his style and become the first true o
positional player. He would start  withelm Steinitz, the first great
out with a somewhat passive game _ defender.
and would not worry about being attacked as long as he had certain
positional trumps. (He particularly favored a superior pawn structure.)

After more than 20 years of dominating world chess, Steinitz was
finally beaten by the great Emanuel Lasker. He lost his title and then lost
the rematch. In failing health and severe poverty (in those days, it was
very difficult for a chess professional to make a living), Steinitz came
unglued mentally. He died a pauper in New York.




How to Defend
Against a Space Advantage

Sooner or later, you will find yourself squeezed by your opponent into a
cramped position, so you need to know how to defend against such a tactic.
Remember the following principle:

The player with less space should try to trade some pieces.
You may find it helpful to think of a cramped position as being like
overpopulation. Twenty people in a small house are crowded and very



uncomfortable. Two people in the same house have all the space they
need. Let?s look at an example of this principle translated into strategy:

1. d4 d5

2. c4
A good move. White puts pressure on the d5-pawn and makes prepara-
tions for the eventual opening ofthe c-file for his Rooks with cxd5. Though
this opening is called the Queen?s Gambit, no gambit is really involved.
If Black captures the c4-pawn with 2...dxc4, White can even the score in
several ways, the quickest being 3.Qa4+ followed by Qxc4. After White
captures the pawn, he would follow up with e2-e4 to acquire a full pawn
center. Because of that possibility, Black?s usual response to the Queen?s
Gambit is to decline the capture on c4 and instead guard his d5-pawn:

2. ue e6
This is the most common move, though 2...c6 is also good. Not so good
is 2...Nf6, because after 3.cxd5 Nxd5 4.e4, White would once again
acquire a full pawn center and all the space that comes with it.

3. Nec3
White continues to develop pieces and put pressure on the d5-pawn.
Notice how the Knight fits comfortably behind the c4-pawn; the two work
together to attack Black?s center.

3.0 Nf6
Asensible reply. Black also develops his pieces, at the same time giving
additional support to the d5-pawn.

4. Bg5
White pins the Black Knight, one of the defenders of the d5-pawn. Notice
how White is quickly developing his pieces and at the same time using
three of his men to directly or indirectly put pressure on square d5.

The Third Principle: Space


Here?s another important point: White would like to play e3 and free
his f1-Bishop. However, if he makes this move too early, he will block the
cl1-Bishop. By moving the cl-Bishop first, White will be free to follow up
with e3. Remember, whenever possible avoid blocking your pieces with
your pawns.

Black?s next move is to break the pin on his Knight:

4). Be7
Now, if the Knight moves, the Bishop on g5 will not attack the Queen.
Black has developed a new piece and is preparing to castle.

5. @3
White frees the f1-Bishop and gives more support to his pawn on d4.

5. lke O-O

6. Nf3
White has developed his unmoved Knight.
6. aes Nbd7

Black also moves his other Knight into the battle. He avoids 6...Nc6,
because he sees that he will have to use his c-pawn to give added defense
to the d5-pawn. A 6...Nc6 move would block the pawn and make it

7. Rc
White is anticipating the eventual removal of his pawn on c4 (either
because White will play cxd5 or because Black will take it with ...dxc4),
so he places his Rook on the soon-to-be-opened c-file.

7. one c6
Black gives more support to the d5-pawn and also gives the Queen a little
room to move.

8. Bd3









White develops the Bishop and pre-
pares to castle. So far both sides
have played sensibly. It?s now time
to take stock. What is going on in
the position in Diagram 84?

First, do a space count. You
should come up with 13 to 6. In case
your space count is different, let?s
run quickly through it so that you
can see where you went wrong.
Start with White. White?s pawns on
DIAGRAM 84. d4 and c4 control four squares (e5,
d5, c5, and b5). His Knights control another four (g5, e5, d5, and b5). His
g5-Bishop controls two (f6 and hé) and his d3-Bishop controls three (f5,
g6, and h7). These numbers add up to a total space count of 13. Now for
Black. Only his d5-pawn strikes into enemy territory, so we count 2 for
his pawns. His f6Knight controls two squares (e4 and g4). Finally, his
e7-Bishop controls another two squares (b4 and a3). The squares add up
to a total space count of 6 for Black.

With this space count, we have confirmed that White has more
territory than Black. Because of Black?s lack of breathing room, Black is
unable to move his Rooks to useful files, and his Bishop on c8 is com-
pletely blocked. Obviously, Black must do something about this undesir-
able state of affairs.

Fortunately for Black, Capablanca gave this position some attention
many years ago and came up with a solution. His reasoning went some-
thing like this: Because Black?s position is cramped, he must initiate a
series of trades to give himself more room to move. Then Black must
stake a bigger claim in the center and advance either his c6- or e6-pawn,
challenging White?s central position and striking out for still more space.












The Third Principle: Space


QUIZ 25. You have a large space advantage and your opponent
attempts to trade some pieces. What should you do?

@ Let him trade; trades can only work in your favor.

@ Avoid trades as much as possible.

M@ Invoke the en passant rule.



Black has no choice but to try this tactic:

8... dxc4!
The first trade.

9. Bxc4 Nd5!
More trades. White?s g5-Bishop cannot avoid being traded.

10. Bxe7 Qxe7
You can see that Black already has extra elbow room.

11. O-O
White avoids 11.Bxd5 or 11.Nxd5 because then 11...exd5! would give
Black just what he wants: The Bishop on c8 would no longer be blocked
by a pawn.

WW. . Nxc3!
One more trade. Black wanted to play ...e6-e5, but if he made this move
too early, he would lose a pawn; for example, 11...e5? 12.Nxd5 cxd5 13.Bxd5.
Then the Knight on d5 would have more attackers than defenders.

12. Rxc3 e5
Having given himself more room, Black solves his one remaining prob-
lem: the blocked Bishop on c8. By pushing the e5-pawn, Black has freed
his Bishop and expanded its territory.

13. dxe5 Nxed5

14. NxeS5 Qxe5



Now that Black has traded pieces and freed his Bishop, he obviously has
plenty of room to move about in. Let?s do another space count to confirm
the wisdom of this strategy: 10 to 9. Black?s space count is now almost
equal to White?s! Play over this example several times, trying to get a feel
for the space-giving powers of a trade.









TEST 17. What is the space count?











TEST 18. It is White?s turn to play.
Both Bishops seem blocked by

their pawns. What should White
do in this situation?















The Third Principle: Space








TEST 19. It is Black?s turn to play.
Do a space count. Because White
controls more territory, would
1...Be6 be a sensible move?














eee eee ee

The Fourth Principle:
Pawn Structure

learly the weakest man on the board, the little pawn may seem

unimportant. In reality, though, the pawn is the foundation upon

which most chess strategies are built. The great Polish
Grandmaster Saviely Tartakower (1887-1956) was not joking when he
wrote, ?Never lose a pawn and you will never lose a game.?

The Importance of Pawns

In the 17th and 18th centuries, the power of pawns was universally
underrated. It took the legendary French player Francois-André Philidor
(1726-95) to demonstrate that correct handling of the pawns could make
a major difference in a game. In 1749, he published a chess book that gave
detailed instructions on how to play the middlegame. His comment ?Les
pions sont l?Ame du jeu? (Pawns are the soul of the game) became one of
the most famous chess sayings.

Philidor quite rightly believed that ignorance of the correct way to
handle pawns was the primary weakness of his chess-playing contempo-
raries. But, like most people who are ahead of their time, he was misun-
derstood. Some players thought he was claiming that the ability to
promote a pawn to a Queen made pawns stronger than pieces. Other
players did not know what to make of his theories. Though worshiped in
chess circles, Philidor was never really appreciated in his lifetime for his



great insights. That level of appre-
ciation came only many years after
his death.

Less than one hundred years
later, in 1857, Paul Morphy domi-
nated the chess world. Able to cal-
culate with immense speed and
precision and possessing wonder-
ful technique, Morphy played a
wide-open, attacking game that
=? made little use of pawns. Those
André Philidor: ?Pawns are the soul = were the days of never-ending at-
of chess.? tacks and blood-soaked boards,
and even Morphy could not properly handle closed positions in which
pawn play was the critical factor. Philidor was still not fully understood.

After Morphy retired, Wilhelm Steinitz gradually assumed the mantle
of chess leader. In 1873, he changed his style and, with single-minded
determination, succeeded in also changing the style of world chess.
Positional and defensive ideas became prominent. The intricacies of pawn
formations and pawn weaknesses became hot topics of discussion. By
1905, Philidor had been completely vindicated. Now, in the 1990s, his ideas
have become common property and are passed along to all players, just
as I will now pass them on to you.


When You Leave Pawns at Home

In the game-opening examples I?ve shown you, the players have moved
both their pieces and their pawns. Some beginners think they should
leave their pawns at home, moving them only when necessary to make
way for their pieces. Let?s see what happens when such a player (White)

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


meets an opponent (Black) who uses his pawns to control space in the
center of the board.

1. Ne3
White immediately gets a piece out. Remember, White?s strategy is to
move as few pawns as possible.

1. d5
Black takes control of some of the central squares. So far the space count
is even: 2 to 2.

2. Nf3 c5
Black uses his pawns to restrict the movements of White?s pieces. Note
how the d5-pawn takes control of square e4 away from the c3-Knight, and
the c5-pawn takes control of square d4 away from the f3-Knight.

3. d3
Finally, White must move a pawn to get a Bishop out.

3. awe Nc6
This Knight fits very nicely behind the c5-pawn. Pawn and Knight can
now work together to put pressure on square d4. So far, Black has built
up a space-count edge of 8 to 6.

4. Bg5?
White pins Black?s e7-pawn. However, White?s pieces will now be chased
back by the Black pawns.

4, f6 6. Bg3 Be6
5. Bia e5

White?s pieces are hemmed in because Black?s pawns control the center.
As Diagram 85 on the following page shows, the space count stands
at 5 for White to 10 for Black. White?s pawnless strategy has clearly been
unsuccessful. Moreover, the example demonstrates that moving one or
two pawns does not lose time, because the opponent must also move his
pawns. If he doesn?t, his prematurely advanced pieces will be chased
backward, resulting in a gain of time for the opponent?s pawns.










































Why did White?s strategy fail? The answer hinges on the fact that
pawns are worth less than pieces. When a pawn attacks a Bishop, Knight,
or Rook, the more powerful piece feels compelled to retreat. When David
meets Goliath in chess, the giant gets out of the way! Thus, it makes good
sense to lead off a game with your pawns. They clear the road for the
heavy artillery.

QUIZ 26. After 1.b3 e5, White plays 2.Nf. The result is shown in

Diagram 86. Why is 2.Nf3 a poor move?



What Is Pawn Structure?

The health and the positioning of all the pawns is called pawn structure.
(It is also called pawn formation, or pawn skeleton.) If White has many
weak pawns whereas Black?s pawns are all well defended, Black is said
to have a superior pawn structure.

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


Many players fail to appreciate that the positioning of the pawns
dictates the strategies available to both sides. For example, if one side
has advanced his pawns and thus gained a space advantage, the other
side?s strategy might be to trade pieces and decrease crowding in his
cramped quarters. If one side?s pawn formation is full of weak pawns, the
other side?s strategy might be to attack these weak men.

What Makes a Pawn Weak?

When a boxer notices that he has cut his opponent, he repeatedly jabs at
the cut in the hopes of making it bad enough for the ring doctor to stop
the fight. The same logic applies in chess. If your opponent has a weak
pawn (a wound), focus your army on that pawn and make every effort
to capture it. Let?s take a look at the most typical types of weak pawns:
pawn islands and doubled, tripled, isolated, and backward pawns.

Pawn Islands
It stands to reason that as you move your pawns, they break rank. With
every pawn move, what was a solid rank of pawns becomes more and
more fragmented. Single pawns or
groups of pawns that are separated
from other pawns by at least one file
are called pawn islands. Diagram 87
shows three pawn islands for White
(a2-b2, d4, and f2-g2-h2) and two for
Black (a7-b6 and e6-7-g7-h7). Re-
member Capablanca?s warning: ?In
the endgame, whoever has the
most pawn islands loses.?


























Doubled Pawns
A pawn that makes a capture and
ends up on the same file but in front
of another pawn of the same color
is said to be doubled. Doubled
pawns are usually considered
weak, because they do not have the
mobility of normal pawns. On occa-
sion, though, a doubled pawn on a
center file can be useful, because
the pawn can control central
DIAGRAM 88. squares that normal pawns cannot.

In Diagram 88, White?s pawns on c4 and c3 are doubled. The pawn on
c4 is the one in trouble, because it is unfortunately sitting on a half-open
file and vulnerable to attack by several of Black?s pieces. If White?s
c3-pawn was sitting on d3, his c4-pawn would be solidly protected by
another pawn and would be quite safe. As itis, Black can launch an all-out
attack on the weakling on c4.

1. oa Ne5
Black attacks the c4-pawn with both his Knight and his c7-Rook and
threatens to capture the pawn with 2...Nxc4. White defends the pawn with

2. Qa4
White has fended off the double attack. Is the pawn safe? No. One more
attacker should be enough to break the defender?s back.

2. we Rfc8
Now the pawn is attacked three times and White is unable to defend it
again. After a move like 3.Rfd1, Black would play 3...Nxc4. After 4.Nxc4
Rxc4, Black would start to work on the c3-pawn.

This example shows that if an advanced pawn is not defended by
another pawn, it can become weak. Doubled pawns are not a liability as














The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


long as the front one is defended by a pawn, as you can see from the
following opening sequence:

1. e4 e5 4, d3 d6é

2. Nf3 Nc6 5. O-O Ni6é

3. Bcd Bc5 6. Be3!
Has White gone mad? He is voluntarily creating a situation in which his
pawns will be doubled.

6. on Bxe3
Black happily obliges.

7. fxe3

What has White gained with his doubled pawns? Take a look at Diagram
89. First, White has gained an open file for his f1-Rook. Because Black
does not have an open file for his Rooks, the open file gives White?s Rooks
an advantage. Second, White has traded the very active Black Bishop on
c5 for the previously undeveloped White Bishop on cl. Third, and most
important: The combined action of Black?s c6-Knight, c5-Bishop, and
e5-pawn brought a good deal of pressure to bear on square d4. At any
moment, Black might have moved a piece to this square (for example, by
playing Nd4). Now White?s pawn
on e3 takes control of square d4
away from Black altogether. Fi-
nally, White allowed his pawns to








be doubled because the foremost
pawn on e4 is solidly defended by
the pawn on d3. As a result, the
White pawns on e3 and e4 are not
only safe but are highly useful, be-
cause they combine to put pressure

on four critical center squares (d4,
f4, d5, and f5).

















Tripled Pawns

Though doubled pawns can be useful, tripled pawns are always an
out-and-out liability. They are invariably undefended by other pawns and
are usually sitting ducks for an enemy attack. The square directly in front
of tripled pawns can easily fall into the clutches of an enemy piece,
supplying an excellent outpost because no pawns are around to chase the
piece away.

In Diagram 90, White?s tripled pawns are undefended by other pawns
and are doomed to eventual capture by the enemy. Black, with the
half-open c-file for his Rooks and square c5 for his Knight, can use his
whole army to attack the tripled pawns via 1...Rfc8, 2...Nd7, and 3...Nb6.
White will then be unable to stop Black from winning the c4-pawn with
4,..Nxc4. After Black wins this first pawn, he will turn his attention to the
next pawn in line: the one on c3. To put it simply:

Don?t triple your pawns!







































The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


Isolated Pawns
An isolated pawn is considered weak because it has no protecting pawns
on either side to give it the support it often needs. In Diagram 90, the
c4-pawn is isolated as well as tripled. Diagram 91 shows another example
of an isolated pawn. Here, the isolated White pawn on d4 cannot be
protected by other pawns and must be constantly guarded by pieces.
Black can put more and more pressure on the pawn, forcing White to use
all his powerful pieces as nursemaids and thereby keeping White in a
passive, defensive position. As it turns out, White will lose this pawn
anyway, because Black can speedily attack it with everything he?s got.
Here?s how:

1. wes Nf5
Because Black is attacking the pawn with four pieces and White is
guarding it with only three, Black simply threatens to take it off the board.
White plays

2. Rfd1
Making the pawn safe once more. Black brings another attacker into play:

2 Rfd8
This time, though, White has run out of defenders, and the pawn will fall.

3. Rac Necxd4 5. Nxd4 = Bxd4
4. Nexd4 Nxd4
Black is now a solid pawn ahead.

Backward Pawns
A backward pawn is one that has fallen behind the other pawns of its own
persuasion and can no longer be supported or guarded by them. In










































Diagram 92, on squares dé and f7 Black has two backward pawns. The
pawns on hé and b7 are not backward because they can safely advance.

QUIZ 27. In Diagram 93, itis Black?s turn to play. Point out White?s

main weakness and identify the best way for Black to attack this
weak point.



Safety First

[ have introduced you to some players who were vicious attackers and to
others who were more positionally inclined. Former World Champion
Tigran Petrosyan (1929-84) of the Soviet Union was a different type of
player altogether. He was the ultimate ?safety first? player. Always careful

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


about his pawn structure, he rarely
exposed himself with any kind of
pawn weakness. He would go out of
his way to stop his opponent's at-
tacks before they even got started.

Criticized for his ?boring? play-
ing style, Petrosyan did not win
many tournaments, typically taking
second or third place. However, he
was known as a player who was
almost impossible to beat. The crit-

ics had to eat their words in 1963, Tigran Petrosyan, the unbeatable foe.






f .


when he won the World Championship from the great Soviet player

Mikhail Botvinnik.

How to Cure a Weak Pawn

A pawn becomes weak when it can no longer be protected by another
pawn. Your first defense against weak pawns is to avoid exposing them.

When you advance your pawns, be
sure they cannot fall under attack.
You can ward off potential attacks
by trailing one pawn behind your
advanced pawns so that you can
bring it forward in case of trouble.
In Diagram 94, the White pawn
on e4 is useful because it puts pres-
sure on the important d5 central
square and blocks the diagonal of
the fianchettoed Bishop on b7.





















However, Black is starting to mount an attack against this pawn. With the
two pieces on b7 and f6 attacking the pawn and only one piece defending
it, Black threatens to snap the pawn off the board with ...Nxe4. White
could send in another defender with 1.Bf3, but Black would merely
increase the pressure with 1...Nc5, and White would then have great
difficulty in guarding the pawn. Fortunately, White has foreseen the
possibility of this type of attack and has left a trailing pawn to act as
guardian if the need arises. By playing 1.f8, White bolsters the pawn?s
defense and Black has to throw all thoughts of attacking the pawn out the

We are all saddled with a weak pawn on occasion. But you can often
transform the weakness by either trading the weak pawn or moving it to
a square where it is no longer vulnerable.

In Diagram 95, White?s pawn on c4 is isolated and weak. Black has
taken note and mounted an attack against it. Black hopes to further
increase the pressure with ...Rc8, followed by ...Rc7 and ...Qc8. With his
mind on what promises to be a very
pleasant game, Black has forgotten
an important principle:

Before you attack a weak

pawn, you must gain control of
the square directly in front of it.
If you don?t control this square,
your opponent can advance the
pawn. It is White?s turn to play, and
Black?s lapse allows White to take
the advantage:


















DIAGRAM 95. 1. 5!

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


A very strong move. White makes use of the pin on the d-file (1...dxc5
would merely provoke 2.Rxd8) and turns his ?weak? pawn into a battering
ram. Now the Black b6-Knight and the a6-Bishop are under attack by the
White e2-Bishop.

1. ees Bxe2
Black takes care of the problem of the attacked Bishop. Now White
cannot play 2.cxb6 because Black would respond with 2...Bxd1., snaring

an exchange. (A player wins an exchange when he trades a minor piece
for a Rook.)

2. Qxe2
White regains material equality and renews the threat against Black?s

2. 0 ae Nc8

3.  cxd6
Now Black cannot play 3...Nxd6, because 4.e5 would result in a pawn fork
against Black?s Knights.

3. oe exd6

The situation has undergone a drastic change. White?s weak c4-pawn
is gone, and Black is left with an isolated pawn on d6. Because White has
the square in front of the newly weakened pawn well guarded, he can put
pressure on the pawn while simultaneously taking control of more space.

4. Qa6
The space count is now a resounding 25 to 2! All of White?s pieces are well
placed, and both of his Rooks are sitting on beautiful files. Adding White?s
strengths to Black?s weakness on d6, you can see that Black?s position is










Let?s look at another example,
this time one that favors Black. In
Diagram 96, Black has an excellent
position. His Rooks are both cen-
trally posted and his c4-Knight is
strong (as advanced Knights have
a tendency to be).

The one drawback is the back-
ward pawn on dé. Black cures this
problem immediately:

Io. d5!

DIAGRAM 96. He gets rid of his one weakness,
frees his e7-Bishop, and opens the file for his d8-Rook.

2. exd5 Nxd5

3. Nxd5  Bxd5
With these pieces and a space-count advantage of 11 to 8, Black can be
very happy with this position.















QUIZ 28. Which statement is false?

@ Doubled pawns are always weak.

@ Tripled pawns are almost always a problem.

M@ Ifyou have a weak pawn, you should either try to trade it
or start an attack in another sector of the board so that
your opponent does not have time to attack the pawn.




The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


Good Pawns and Pigs on the 7th

A good pawn is any pawn that exerts a cramping pressure on the oppo-
nent and is safe from attack. One type of pawn that fits this description is
known as a passed pawn, because it has no enemy pawns in front or on
either side. Such a pawn is free to advance unless the opponent assigns
one of his pieces the passive task of setting up a roadblock in front of it.
A passed pawn is useful in the middlegame because it ties up the enemy
piece that is blocking its advance, and it is also strong in the endgame
because it can run for the border and return as a Queen.

From the position in Diagram 97, White?s passed pawn is going to
thrash the whole Black army. It is White?s turn to play. White would like
to promote this pawn to a Queen, but Black has blocked it with his Queen.
The way to win such positions is to break the blockade.

1. Qf7
Acrushing move, setting up the threat of 2.Qe8+ Qxe8 3.dxe8=Q+, and
so on. Black counters with

Loo... Ra8
stopping 2.Qe8+, because 2...Qxe8
3.dxe8=Q+ Rxe8 would then lose
the precious White pawn.

2. Rel!

Now White threatens to win every-
thing with 3.Re8+ Qxe8 4.dxe8=Q+
Rxe8 5.Qxe8+. Black is powerless
to prevent a major loss of material.
2. se Qfs
























Also hopeless is 2...Qg8, because it leads to 3.Qf6+ Qg7 4.Re8+ Rxe8
5.dxe8=Q checkmate.

3. Qxf8+ Rxf8 5. d8=Q

4. Res? Kg7
Accepting his fate, Black can do nothing better than resign.

This example showed the passed pawn?s great desire to metamor-
phose into a Queen. Aaron Nimzowitsch called this desire the ?pawn?s
lust to expand.? In the next example, we?ll take a look at another passed
pawn, called a protected passed pawn.

The passed pawn on d5 in Diagram 98 is called a protected passed
pawn because it is firmly defended by another White pawn. Black must
worry about the d5-pawn?s advance, but he has no good way of attacking
it. Because of the pawn?s invulnerability, White is free to leave it on its
own and use his pieces elsewhere. In this position, White also controls
the only open file and will use it to penetrate Black?s position.

1. Re7!

The White Rook charges into the heart of Black?s territory. Placing a
Rook on the 7th rank is considered
advantageous, because most of the
enemy pawns reside there and thus
become vulnerable to attack.

1. one Rd7
Black offers a trade, hoping to get
rid of the e7-Rook.

2. Rxd7 Qxd7

3. Qe5e7!

With his protected passed pawn,
White will be able to enter any





















The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


endgame with confidence. More importantly, White is still angling for
control of the 7th rank.

3.00. Qxe7
An unfortunate necessity. A 3...Rd8 move merely leads to 4.Qxd7 Rxd7
5.Re8 checkmate, which as I?ve already mentioned is called a Back Rank
Mate, and tends to occur frequently.

4.  Rxe7
Black loses a pawn because 4...Ra8 (which would guard the a7-pawn)
simply exposes the f7-pawn to Rxf7.

As you can see, placing a Rook on the 7th rank is worth some effort.
I bring this strategy up in this chapter because a Rook on the 7th is one
of the worst enemies a pawn can have! Some players go as far as to say
that it?s worth losing a pawn to place a Rook on the 7th rank, compensating
as it usually does for the temporary 1-point disadvantage.

A Rook on the 7th is nice, but two Rooks doubled on the 7th are more
than twice as nice! Take a look at Diagram 99. Here, the material count
is even, and it is White?s move. White will win by doubling his Rooks on
the 7th rank. Rooks in this position are often able to capture everything
in their path; their combined might
makes them almost unstoppable.
In fact, their power to eat every-
thing is so great that two Rooks
on the 7th are often called pigs on
the 7th. White sets his pigs in mo-
tion with









1. Rdd7
Black has no good reply to White?s
many threats.

1. Ri6














Moves like 1...h6 would lose to 2.Rxg7+ Kh8 3.Rh7+ Kg8, and then 4.Rdg7
2. Rxg7+ Kf8

3. Rxh7
White threatens 4.Rh8 checkmate.
3. eee Ke8

White can win in many ways. He could keep feasting with 4.Rxb7 to gain
a 3-point material advantage, or he could continue the attack and prepare
a pawn for promotion with 4.5 followed by 5.g6. Play with this position
for a while and figure out how you would win the game.

The Pawn Chain

Having dealt with individual pawn weaknesses and the pawn?s worst
enemy, it?s time to discuss pawn chains. A pawn chain is neither bad nor
good. It is simply a group of pawns lined up on a diagonal. Each pawn is
considered an individual link in the chain.

Pawn chains are created by many kinds of openings. One of the most
common pawn chains is an outcome of the French Defense.

1. e4 e6 4. @5 Nfd7
2. d4 d5 5. 4 c5
3. Nd2 Nf6 6. c3

In the resulting position (see Diagram 100), White has a pawn chain that
reaches from b2 to e5. Black?s chain reaches from f7 to d5.

The important thing to remember about a pawn chain is that you must
attack it at its base. The base is the pawn that is not protected by any other
pawn?the end of the chain. In Diagram 100, the base of White?s pawn

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure







chain becomes d4. If Black plays
..cxd4, after White?s recapture with
cxd4 the d4-pawn will have no pawn
defenders. Similarly, the base of
Black?s pawn chain becomes e6, if
White plays f4-f5 and fxe6, after
Black?s recapture with ...fxe6 the
e6-pawn will have no pawn defend-
ers. Let?s explore some typical
moves from Diagram 100.

6... Nc6
Because Black can at any moment DIAGRAM 100.
play ...cxd4, creating the d4 base pawn, Black puts more pressure on d4.
Remember, as soon as you figure out which pawn is the base or potential
base of the chain, rush over and launch an attack!

7. Ndf3
Why has White moved the same piece twice in the opening? White sees
that his one weak point is his d4-pawn. Forewarned is forearmed, so he
decides to guard the pawn to the extent possible, to ensure its safety. The
more common move 7.Ngf3 would lead to 7...cxd4 8.cxd4 Qb6, by which
time the d4-pawn would start to get shaky.

7. os Qbé

8 Ne2
Now the d4-pawn is well defended and White can implement his plan of
playing for an f5 advance and a subsequent attack on Black?s pawn on e6.

One other point worth noting about the base attack: When you trade
pawns at the base of a pawn chain, you tend to open a file for your Rooks.
























































Diagram 101 shows a simplified example. Here, both sides are following
their respective plans for a base attack. White hopes to play 1.fxe6 fxe6
2.Bg4 to put pressure on the Black e6 base pawn and also to penetrate the
7th rank with Rf7. If it were Black?s move, he would do the same type of
thing: 1...cxd4 2.cxd4 Bb6 attacks the d4 base pawn and threatens pene-
tration of the 2nd rank with 3...Rc2.

QUIZ 29. In Diagram 102, it is Black?s turn to play. White has a

pawn chain on d4 and e5. How do you attack a pawn chain? How
would you go about it here?



The Making of a Champion

] have talked about several players from history. One player you might
be curious about, who is still alive today, is me! I?m only too happy to
satisfy your curiosity.

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


I was born in Damascus in 1960.
My father is Syrian and my mother
English. When I was two years old,
we moved to England; in 1967 we
moved again, this time to the
United States. We settled first in
Seattle, Washington, then moved
to the warmer climate of Virginia
Beach, Virginia, and finally settled
back in Seattle in 1972.

While in Virginia Beach, I got
used to playing sports on fine, Yasser Seirawan: America?s top
sunny days. The typical cold and _ player.
rainy days of Seattle made me stir-crazy. When a neighbor offered to
teach me chess, I jumped at the chance: anything to relieve the boredom
of those long, wet evenings.

Those first chess lessons soon led me to the legendary Last Exit on
Brooklyn coffee house, achess haven where an unlikely bunch of unusual
people congregates to do battle. There, I learned the ropes. When I got
used to one player?s crazed attacking style, I would sit down with a
defensive player and force myself to learn to attack. This training paid off,
and I quickly increased my skills.

After playing in tournaments for a few years, I finally became a master
in 1977. I won the U.S. Junior Championship in 1978 and the World Junior
Championship in 1979. With that victory (and the International Master
title that came with it), I started receiving a steady stream of invitations
to international events.

After tournaments in Sweden, England, and Holland, I was awarded
the International Grandmaster title (the highest title other than World
Champion) in 1980. At that time, I was the third youngest person in history




to have received this title. Since that time, I have traveled to every corner
of the world and my interest in chess has paid great dividends. With such
feathers as the U.S. Chess Championship in my cap, I became the second
American since Bobby Fischer to qualify for the World Championship
matches. Presently, am ranked 10th in the world and my main aspiration
is to bring the World Champion title back to the United States.

Open Positions and Closed Positions

Most players think of themselves as attackers, so I will start by explaining
open positions, which lend themselves to fast, aggressive games.

Open Positions
An open position has a minimum number of pawns sitting in the center.
Pieces are not blocked and can zip into the enemy camp. As a result,
attacks can be mounted quickly and often. To play an open position,
getting your pieces out and your King castled into safety as quickly as
possible is of utmost importance. In the absence of center pawns, the
Rooks are able to enter the foray, often with devastating results.

The position shown in Diagram
103 is as open as possible, because
all the center pawns have been
traded. White has his army ready to
move, and his King is safe. Black,
on the other hand, is still trying to
get his men out. Moreover, his
King is still in the center and is
vulnerable to the White Rooks and
other White pieces. It is White?s
turn to play.























The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


1. Ret+ Be7

2. Qe2!

Excellent! White intensifies the pressure down the e-file and prevents
Black from castling (because after castling White would eliminate Black?s
e7-Bishop with Qxe7). Notice how White?s lead in development allows
him to bring his Rooks into play, whereas Black?s poor things on a8 and
h8 are constrained and helpless.

2. ae Nb6
Black blazes a trail for his c8-Bishop. He now hopes to play 3...Be6, which
would close the e-file and allow him to castle.

3. Rad!

White?s other Rook jumps to an open file. Now 3...Be6 would lose to
4.Bxa6! (which initiates a discovered attack by the Rook on d1) 4...Qc8
5.Bb5+. White would have a material advantage of 1 (a pawn). Black
abandons 3...Be6 and plays

3. ase Bd7
Black stops one threat but opens himself up to an even worse one. White
now sees that, if he could draw the Black Queen away from the protection
of the e7-Bishop, he would be able to checkmate his opponent.

4. Bxc7! Qxc7
For Black, it?s either this move or 4...0-O, which would lead to 5.Bxd8 and
an insurmountable 10 to 3 advantage in force for White. Even so, Black is

5. Qxe7 checkmate
Let that be a lesson to you: Castle quickly!

On occasion, a player may decide to play an opening gambit (sacrific-
ing a pawn or two) to open up the center and gain a lead in development.
Such was the case in a game between Lawrence Crakanthorp and Jon-
athan Maddox, played in New Zealand in 1933.



1. e4 c5
Black is using what?s called the Sicilian Defense. The idea is to control
square d4 with a wing pawn so that if White plays a d4 advance, Black can
trade the wing pawn for a more valuable center pawn.

2. d4 cxd4

3. Nf3
White wants to recapture a pawn with his Knight rather than with his
Queen, because the horse is much more comfortable in the center than
the Queen would be. If instead of 3.Nf3 White plays 3.Qxd4, Black would
gain valuable time by playing 3...Nc6, thereby attacking the White Queen.
As it is, Black plays

3. ase e5
Tricky but risky. Black hopes White will take the bait and play 4.Nxe5??,
which would lose to 4...Qa5+ with a double attack on White?s King and
Knight. Black would then win a piece. The trouble with 3...e5 is that it
does nothing for Black?s development, it weakens his control of the
important d5 central square, and it leaves the d7-pawn backward.

4. 3!
A good response. White sacrifices a pawn in order to open up the position
and start an attack.

4A dxc3

5.  Nxc3
Now White?s pieces jump nicely into the outpost on d5. Black must be
very careful, because the position is open and White has a lead in

5. le Nc6
A good move. Black defends his e5-pawn and develops a piece.

6. Bc4
White develops another piece, controls d5, and eyes the vulnerable f7
point in Black?s camp. Note how powerful the Bishop is on square c4. In

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


general, Bishops fare better than Knights in open positions, because few
of the pawns in the middle can block their way. Because Bishops are
long-range pieces, they can penetrate deep into the enemy camp with just
one move. Knights have a shorter range and often need to make two or
three moves to position themselves for hostile action.

6. Be7??
This move leads to disaster, but a move like 6...Nf6 would also have
created unsolvable problems after 7.Ng5!, when Black?s f7-pawn falls.

7. Qd5
Oops! White threatens 8.Qxf7 checkmate, and Black can?t save himself
with 7...Nh6 because a response of 8.Bxh6 would simply repeat the threat
of f7 checkmate. Black has to give his King room to run. |

7. ane Qc7 9. Qxg7

8. Qxf7+ Kd8
Asobering move. White now has a 1-point material advantage and intends
to increase it to 6 points with 10.Qxh8.

9. oes Bf6
Black defends the Rook but leaves his King wide open.

10. Qf8 checkmate

Black lost the game because he weakened control of an important
central square, which the White Queen used as a point of entry into
Black?s position. He also fell behind in development, which allowed White
to attack with superior force.

Closed Positions

We have seen that open games often lead to wild and woolly battles. A
much slower type of game results from closed positions. Aclosed position
is one in which the center is filled with pawns, which block the pieces and
force both sides to slowly maneuver around the pawn walls to get their
armies out.























In Diagram 104, the center is
completely blocked by pawns?a
truly closed position. Play will focus
on the wings. Black has a space
advantage on the Kingside, so he
will attack on that side, whereas
White controls more space on the
Queenside, so he will attack on that
side. The principle at work here is

Attack where you have most
space to maneuver.

In closed positions, you must

also work hard to create open files for your Rooks. In Diagram 104, White
will play for a c4-c5 advance followed by a capture on d6 with cxd6. This
dual-purpose plan leads to the opening of the c-file for White?s Rooks and
forces Black?s base to d6. Black will open up the g-file with ...g5-g4
followed by ...gxf3, which attacks the base of White?s pawn chain.

To clear lines for your pieces in closed positions, you must start with














pawn attacks. Contrast this strat-
egy with that for open positions, in
which the pieces lead the attack.
One more tip: Knights are often
better than Bishops in closed posi-
tions. Knights can jump over other
pieces and are not blocked by the
pawns in their way, whereas Bish-
ops hate walls of pawns. These
walls block them and keep them
locked up in their prison cells. In
Diagram 105, the pathetic White

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


Bishop is imprisoned by its own pawns, and Black?s Knight is a real bone
in White?s throat. The Knight has penetrated the heart of White?s position
and will torment him for a long time to come. The fact that Black also
controls the only open file (remember the importance of open files in
closed positions) makes this game extremely unpleasant for White.

So which do I recommend for the beginning player: closed or open
positions? Open positions, by all means! The type of game produced by
open positions will teach you about timing and will introduce you to the
tactics necessary to deal with lack of development and an exposed King.
In general, closed positions are played more effectively by players with
several years? experience under their belts. Of course, you will, on
occasion, find yourself faced with a closed position. Don?t panic. The
suggestions I?ve given should enable you to handle such positions in an
intelligent manner. Combine these suggestions with some experience
and you will be able to play both types of game with skill.


QUIZ 30. Which statement is false?

H Closed positions tend to keep out the enemy pieces and
allow you to develop at a slower pace.

M@ Usually, you can safely postpone castling for quite a while
in open positions.

@ Knights generally perform better than Bishops in closed




The Great Endgame Players

Though players such as Alexander Alekhine and Mikhail Tal made their
fortunes with sparkling sacrifices and crowd-pleasing tricks, other great
players have chosen less ostentatious paths. Take, for example, the



Estonian Grandmaster Paul Keres
(1916-75). When he started playing
chess, he was a wild man. He ended
almost every game with some sort
of exciting attack. In addition to
playing every game he could, he
honed his attacking skills by play-
ing postal chess, in which the oppo-
nents send each other one move
at a time, written on a postcard.
Though a game can take years to
Paul Keres, the great Estonian finish, postal chess sharpens your
Grandmaster. analytical abilities and is indispens-
able for isolated chess players. Keres had as many as 150 games on the
go at once!

Making his mark in tournaments, Keres eventually climbed to the
top. Though he was feared as an attacking genius, his style slowly began
to change. Eventually, a new Keres emerged. He preferred a quieter,
classical type of game and was extremely proficient at the endgame. He
was happy to trade pieces and then win in the final stages of play.

Is this propensity for the endgame unusual? Not at all! Modern
Grandmasters are well aware that the endgame is every bit as important
as the opening and the middlegame. Players like Akiba Rubinstein
(1882-1961), Emanuel Lasker (1868-1941), José Capablanca, Vasily Smyslov
(1921- ), and Tigran Petrosyan are all well known for their phenomenal
mastery of this phase of the game.

Should the beginner focus on endgame strategy? No. Learn the basic
principles of the endgame, but don?t be overly concerned with mastering
the endgame just now. Instead, attack at every opportunity (but only after
all your pieces are developed) and be brutal about finishing off your




The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure


opponent any way you can. If he avoids a checkmate, then take off all his
pieces. When you have three or four pieces and he has only a King, you
don?t have to worry about an endgame. Enjoy the rout!

Pawn Structures in the Endgame

We have seen how different pawn structures affect the nature of play in
the opening or middlegame. In the same ways, pawn structures affect the

Diagram 106 shows a typical closed position. White has an impotent
Bishop blocked on the same color as its own pawns, whereas Black has
a powerfully centralized Knight. To make matters worse for White, the
Black King will be able to make inroads into White?s camp. This point is
very important. In an endgame, Kings become powerful pieces and must
be rushed into the battle. In this case, Black?s King and Knight can join
forces and surround the enemy pawn on c4. One final advantage for Black
is the fact that his g3-pawn is so far advanced. If Black can somehow get
the g2-pawn out of the way, he will be able to move his g3-pawn and
perhaps promote it to a Queen. To-
gether, these factors add up to a
losing cause for White.

Itis Black?s turn to play, and he
wastes no time in rushing his King
into the battle area.

ooo. Kb7
Having noticed that the White
pawn on c4 cannot be defended by
any other pawns, Black hastens to
attack it.

2. Kf1





















White tries to bring his King up for defense, but he will arrive too late.

2. aes Kb6 4. Kd2

3. Kel Kc5
White could try to stay put, but he would eventually be pushed back by
the superior Black forces. The play would go something like this: 4.Be2
Kb4 5.Bfl Kc3 6.Kd1 Nec2! (the Black Knight is headed for an even better
square on e3?remember, Knights are at their peak of strength on the
6th rank) 7.Ke2 (or 7.Kcl1 Ne3, and if the Bishop moves, 8...Nxg2 provides
the finishing touch) 7...Kxc4, and Black has won a pawn. Notice how
ineffective the White Bishop is, whereas the Black Knight could hop to
all sorts of vantage points.

4... Nxf3+!
Black hopes to promote his pawn after 5.gxf3 92 with 6...21=Q. White does
not oblige him:

5. Ke3? Ngs
The nimble Knight runs rings around the Bishop. Now the Bishop can?t
move to fl or e2 because of the threat of 6...Nxe4+.

6. Bc2
If White plays 6.Kd2, Black would have the additional option of increasing
his King?s potential with 6...Kd4. As it is, he plays

6 a. Nxh3!
He is still hoping for 7.gxh3 g2 and the crowning of anew Queen. Another
strong Black move is 6...f8!, which breaks White?s blockade on g2.

7. Kd3 {3!
A Queen is certainly in the making, because any capture by the White
pawn on g2 will be met with 8...g2 followed by 9...g1=Q. White resigns.

The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure








Now let?s look at a vastly differ-
ent picture. In Diagram 107, we
have a wide open board with
passed pawns on both sides. Be-
cause the White Bishop isn?t
blocked by pawns, such a position
tends to work in favor of the player
with the Bishop.

1. Beo!

White stops Black?s pawn dead in
its tracks and prevents Black?s
Knight from going to d5 or c4. This DIAGRAM 107.

move demonstrates why the Bishop?s long-range powers are so highly
regarded. Because White now threatens to advance and promote his own
pawns, Black must make an effort to stop them. Unfortunately for Black,
the short-range Knight is not very good at such duties.

1. see Nd7

2. h5
White is not tempted by 2.Bxd7??, because Black would then be free to
advance his pawn with 2...a2.















2. wee Nfs
3 Ba2
White thwarts Black?s attempt to take the White Bishop.
3. ae b5 5. g7
4. 6 b4

And the White pawn is headed for a promotion. This time, the White
Bishop completely dominated the poor Black horse!



QUIZ 31. In an endgame should you:

@ Continue to defend your King?
@ Bring out your King to join in the battle?











TEST 20. It is White?s turn to play.
Can White promote one of his
pawns to a Queen?













TEST 21. Black has a passed pawn
on d5 and a backward pawn on cé.
White has doubled pawns on the
b-file. Which side would you prefer
to play?















The Fourth Principle: Pawn Structure









TEST 22. It is Black?s turn to play.
Because his Queen is attacked by
the White Knight, Black decides to
capture the Knight with 1...Nxe5.
White now has three ways to recap-
ture. Which is best?









TEST 23. It is Black?s turn to play,
and he is a pawn ahead. Which side
has a better chance of winning?

























TEST 24. It is Black?s turn to play.
Though 1...0-O0 is a good move,
Black elects to play 1...Nbd7 first. Is
it a bad idea for Black to postpone
castling in this position?















ee ee ee ee


Annotated Games

fter learning the basic principles demonstrated in this book, you

should practice by playing as much as possible. If you live in a

ghost town or if everyone in your community thinks that chess
is the part of your anatomy where your heart resides, consider buying a
chess computer. These gadgets sell for as little as $90, and they?re getting
cheaper all the time. A computer is a perfect opponent. You can set its
skill level and demand a game at any time?it never says ?No.?

When you have had a chance to get some games under your belt and
have developed a good feel for the information I?ve given you, start
examining a few master games. You will find the moves of particular
games chronicled in weekly chess sections in newspapers or in books
about the lives and games of particular players. In the meantime, this
chapter gives you a taste of annotated games. Play through these games
to see how the principles I?ve discussed are used in actual combat.

The Danger of Not Developing
Your Pieces

Game 1: N.N.-Alphonse Goetz, Strassburg, 1880

(N.N. designates an unknown player, usually someone who has not yet
made a mark in the world of chess.)
1. e4

White stakes a claim in the center. He frees his f1-Bishop and Queen.



1. ow e5
Black counters by grabbing an equal share of the center.

2. f4
This old opening (called the King?s Gambit) is rarely seen nowadays.
White sacrifices a pawn so that he can pull Black?s center pawn off to the
side. This tactic will give White two center pawns to Black?s one. White?s
goal is to get a big share of the center and, while Black is busy defending
his extra pawn, White will obtain a lead in development. The one flaw in
this plan is that it weakens White?s King by allowing one of its protecting
pawns to be captured.

2. owe exf4

3. b3z?
Ahorrible move! White should be developing his pieces. Because Black
threatens to play 3...Qh4+, White should have played 3.Nf3. Then the
game might have continued with 3...d6 4.d4 (by which White would
threaten to capture a pawn with 5. Bxf4) 4...¢55.Bc4, and White would have
had a lead in development.

3. ane Qh4+
Usually, you don?t want to move your Queen out so early. Here, however,
Black?s move presents White with two very bad choices: Either put the
White King on a horrible square or give away more material.

4. 232?
A better move is 4.Ke2, though Black would retain the advantage, because
he has an extra pawn and the White King is stuck in the middle. (By
moving his King, White forfeited the right to castle.)

4. fxg3
This pawn is going on quite a journey! White cannot capture it because
after 5.hxg3, Black would play 5.Qxh1 and be a Rook (5 points) ahead.

5. h3?
White has already lost, but this move leads to a comic finish.

Annotated Games


Bee g2 discovered check
6. Ke2 Qxe4+
7.  Kf2

Now Black could win easily with 7...gxh1=Q, which gives him an 11-point
material advantage. However, he








sees something even better: under-

7. ue gxh1=N checkmate
As you can see in Diagram 108, in
this position the Knight is stronger
than a Queen. The underpromo-
tion results in a slaughter. White
weakened his King and didn?t
bother to develop any of his pieces.
I hope his pitiful fate will scare you
into getting your pieces out as piacram 108.
quickly as possible!















Game 2: John Odin Howard Taylor?-N.N., London, 1862

1. e4 e5
2. Nf3
With this popular move, White attacks Black?s pawn and develops a piece.
2. tee Nf6
Black plays what is called the Petroff Defense, hoping to get a symmetrical
position after both sides exchange their e-pawns.
3. Bc4
White decides to set up an attack. He shows that he is willing to sacrifice
a pawn in order to take a lead in development.
3. oe Nxe4



Black accepts the challenge!

4. Nc3
White is consistently bringing out his army. He avoids 4.Nxe5 d5, which
would allow Black to attack White?s Bishop with a gain of time.

4. Nc5?
Black falls apart. By moving this Knight a third time, he allows White to
take a large lead in development. A better move is 4...Nxc3, which would
force White to take the time to capture the Black Knight and even the
score. This point is important: If you have to move a piece and thereby
lose time, try to capture an enemy piece equal in value to the one you?re
moving. Then your opponent must lose an equivalent amount of time to


5. Nxed
White regains his lost material and also makes a threat against Black?s

5. ase £62?

Suicide! When you are behind in development, you can rarely afford to
weaken your King. Another really bad move is 5...Qe7?, which would lead
to 6.0-0! Qxe5 7.Re1. Black?s Queen would then be lost because it would
be pinned to his King. Black should have blocked White?s Bishop by
moving his Knight yet again, with 5...Ne6. Then 6.d4 followed by 7.0-0
would leave White with a dominating position, but at least Black could
stay in the game for a while.

6. Qh5+
All of White?s pieces now jump on the Black King, which finds itself
forced on a long and unpleasant journey toward checkmate.

6. g6

7. Bf7+ Ke7

8. Nd5+ Kd6

Annotated Games






Diagram 109 shows the current
position. When you find yourself
moving nothing but your King, you
know that something has gone ter-
ribly wrong!
9. Nc4+

Always working with checks,
White does not give Black a mo-
ment to catch his breath.















9, ves Kc6
10. Nb4+ Kb5
11. a44¢ DIAGRAM 109.

White sacrifices a Knight in order to draw the Black King off on a mission
from which it will never return. In general, you will find that when a King
is drawn into enemy territory early in the game, it is destined to be
quickly checkmated.

Ww. Kxb4

12. c3+ Kb3
Ever since move 7, every one of
Black?s moves has been his only
legal option.

13. Qd1 checkmate
Diagram 110 shows how complete-

ly White has managed to surround
the Black King.
























The Danger of Bringing Out
the Queen Too Early

Game 3: Persifor Frazer-Jean Taubenhaus, Paris, 1888

1. e4 e5

2. Nf3 Nc6
Black knows the best reply. He develops a piece and simultaneously
defends his pawn on e5.

3. d4
This move (called the Scotch Opening) is no longer popular, because
White will lose a tempo recapturing the pawn on d4.

3. oan exd4
A good decision.

4. Nxd4 Qh4
Black goes hunting for the White pawn on e4. This tactic is risky, because
the Black Queen will become vulnerable to attack from White?s pieces.

5. Nc3 Nf6?
Black?s move is not consistent with his previous plays. He should have
tried 5...Bb4, which would pin White?s c3-Knight (the lone defender of the
e4-pawn) and renew his threat against the pawn on e4.

6. Nf5

Suddenly, Black?s Queen is no longer the hunter but the hunted!
6... Qhs
7. Be2

White continues to develop pieces and at the same time mounts an attack
against the Queen.

7. ee Qg6
8. Nh4

Annotated Games


This attack on the Black Queen leaves it with nowhere to go. Squares
hé and g5 are controlled by White?s cl-Bishop, and squares h5 and g4 are
under surveillance by the e2-Bishop. The e4-pawn is defended by the
c3-Knight, and the g2-pawn is defended by the h4-Knight. Because White
will capture his Queen on the next move, Black resigns the game.

The moral: Don?t move your Queen too early. First, get your pawns
and minor pieces out. Next, castle as soon as you can. Finally, find homes
for your Rooks and Queen.

Game 4: Otto Kraus?Victor Costin, correspondence, 1914

1. d4
This move is just as good as 1.e4. White frees both his c1-Bishop and his
Queen, gets a pawn in the center, and pressures the important e5 square.
Tho c5
Not the most common move. Black usually plays 1...d5 (copying White)
or 1...Nf6 (developing and controlling e4 and d5). Black?s plan with 1...c5
is to trade White?s center pawn for a less valuable wing pawn.
2. dxc5
White forces Black to consider how he is going to recapture a pawn.
Another good move for White is 2.d5, which would gain space.
2. aes Qa5+
Black immediately wins back the pawn, but brings out his Queen too
early. A better move would be 2...e6 followed by 3...Bxc5, or even 2...Na6
followed by 3...Nxc5. In both cases, the advanced minor piece would be
much more useful than the advanced and exposed Black Queen.
3. Nec3
White calmly blocks the check and develops his Knight to a good square.
3.0 Qxc5
Black has regained his pawn, but his Queen is not completely safe on c5.
4. e4



An excellent move. Now White has a center pawn controlling square d5,
and both of his Bishops are ready to be developed.

4... e5?
Simply awful! Black compounds his lack of development by weakening
his control of the central squares. This move leaves a gaping hole on d5
and turns the pawn on d7 into a backward pawn. Better moves are 4...Nc6,
4,..Nf6, or even 4...e6, which would free the f8-Bishop and keep White?s
Knight out of d5.

5. Nf3
White brings out another piece and eyes the e5-pawn hungrily.

5. ane d6
Though the e5-pawn is already guarded by the Queen, Black decides to
give the pawn some additional support. Such consideration would be fine
if Black had more pieces out, but he is falling more and more behind in
development and should be trying to catch up!

6. Nd5
White places his Knight powerfully in the center and at the same time
sets a trap. Also a good move is 6.Be3, which develops another piece with
a gain of time, because Black?s Queen would be forced to move again.

6 ow Ne7

Black finally develops a Knight and offers to trade his conservative horse
for the strong White counterpart on d5. Unfortunately for Black, he has
fallen right into White?s trap!

7. ba!
Suddenly, Black?s Queen has very few squares to retreat to.

7. a Qc6
The only safe port.

8. Bb5!
White pins Black?s Queen to his King but leaves the White Bishop without
protection. Has White lost his senses?

Annotated Games


8... Qxb5
If the Black Queen doesn?t take the White Bishop, the Bishop will take
the Queen.

9. Ne7+
The point of White?s play is now clear. This Knight fork initiates a double
attack on Black?s King and Queen. Because the Black Queen will be
captured with White?s next move, Black decides to resign the game.

The Danger of Leaving
Your Pieces Undefended

Game 5: Kaprinay?-Hans Hubner, correspondence, 1926

10 0 6c4
White plays the English Opening. As well as giving his Queen some
freedom, White hopes to gain control of square d5 by placing his Knight
on c3 (which together with the c4-pawn points two attackers at d5) and
his f1-Bishop on g2. This opening has been used by all the great players
at one time or another, including Bobby Fischer and the present World
Champion, Garry Kasparov.

oa e5
A good reply. Black counters by staking a claim to the d4 square.

2. Nc3
White increases his control of d5, hits the e4 central square, and develops
a piece.

2. ues Nc6
Black increases his control of d4, defends the e5-pawn, and also develops
a piece. So far, Black is playing well.

3. g3



White intends to fianchetto his Bishop. On g2, the Bishop will control the
long h1-a8 diagonal and, in particular, it will reinforce White?s control of
d5 and e4.

3. ane Nf6
Another good move by Black. He develops his remaining Knight and tries
to counter White?s control of squares e4 and d5.

4. Bg2 Bb4
Black develops his Bishop and prepares to castle. He also intends to
compromise White?s pawns with 5...Bxc3, forcing White to recapture with
6.bxc3 or 6.dxc3. In either case, White?s pawns would be doubled. So far,
Black has played in exemplary fashion.

5. Nd5
White moves his Knight a second time, placing it on the advanced d5 post.
More common is 5.Nf3, which would continue piece development and
prepare the way for castling.

5. ae Nxd5
Not bad, but continued development with 5...0-O would be preferable.
After 5...0-0 6.Nxb4 Nxb4, material would be even, and Black would
enjoy a lead in development.

6.  cxd5
By threatening Black?s Knight, White forces it to move and gains time.
Though White has doubled his pawns, the pawn on d5 cramps Black, and
the resulting opening of the c-file gives White a nice home for his Rooks
later in the game. (Remember, Rooks belong on open files.)

White could also have played 6.Bxd5, but that move would put no
pressure on Black, who would justignore it and castle, with good develop-
ment as the outcome.

6. oa Nd42?

At first glance, this move seems quite good. The problem is that Black
has left an unprotected piece on b4 and that his Knight is a target for

Annotated Games


attack on d4. An even worse move is 6...Na5??, leading to 7.Qa4 Qe7
(defending the Bishop on b4) 8.a3. Then if Black?s Bishop moves out of
danger, the Knight on a5 would be lost. Black should have played 6...Ne7,
which would safeguard all his pieces.

7. @3
White attacks the Knight again and forces it into an undefended position.

7. tee Nf5
Black?s choices are limited. Squares e6 and c6 are covered by the White
pawn on d5. Squares f3, e2, c2, and b3 are all covered by the White Queen
(and other pieces). Black?s only other move is 7...Nb5, but then 8.Qa4
would attack the Knight and the Bishop simultaneously and doom one of
them to destruction.

8 Qg4!
The White Queen attacks both the Black Bishop on b4 and the Black
Knight on f5. Because Black has no way of guarding both pieces, he must
lose material. Disgusted with himself, Black resigns.

The moral: Take special care of an advanced piece that is undefended
or you will lose it.

Game 6: Computer-N.N., Seattle, 1989

1. ed e5

2. Nf3 Nf6
We saw this move?the Petroff Defense?earlier, in Game 2. Black hopes
to copy White?s moves and gain an equal position.

3. Nxe5 Nxed?
Black?s desire to regain material is understandable, but he walks into a
trap. You must be especially careful when you place a piece far from the
security of the rest of your army. Black?s best move is first to play 3...d6!
and only after 4.NB to play Nxe4, because 5.Qe2 would then be comfort-
ably countered with 5...Qe7.



4. Qe?
White threatens to eat the Black Knight. White also has designs against
the Black King, which is sitting uncomfortably on the same file as the
White Queen.

4, ans d5
A good move. Black defends his Knight and frees his c8-Bishop.

5. d3
White attacks the poor Knight again.

5. awe Ni6??
Black is oblivious to White?s true threat. Black should have played 5...Qe7
so that after 6.dxe4 Qxe5 7.exd5 Qxe2+ 8.Bxe2, White would be ahead
by only a pawn. Instead, after 5...Nf6 the roof caves in.

6. Nc6 discovered check
By this discovered check, White?s Queen attacks Black?s King while
White?s Knight attacks Black?s Queen, all at the same time!

6... Qe7
Any other move loses the Queen to 7.Nxd8.

7. Nxe7 Bxe7

8. Bgs
The wily computer develops his Bishop and threatens to disrupt Black?s
pawn structure with 9.Bxf6, because the pin on the e7-Bishop would force
Black to play 9...gxf6.

8... 0-0
Black sees a little trick, but it turns out that the only person tricked is

9. Qxe7! Res
Black will regain a Queen, but White will still end up ahead by a Rook
and a Bishop. White is up 9 points now; he will be up by 8 points after the
trades. White is willing to part with a point in order to trade several pieces
and simplify the position.

Annotated Games


10. Bxf6t  Rxe7+
11. Bxe7

Now White?s strategy is to trade Black?s last three pieces, leaving White
free to do as he pleases with his remaining men.
1... Nc6
Black develops his Knight and attacks the e7-Bishop.
12. Bg5  Nb4
Black threatens to fork White on c2.

13. Na3

White stops the threat and develops a piece.
13... Bi5
14. Kd2

Because this is the endgame, White is happy to leave his King in the
center, where it can help the other pieces.

14... Res

15. c3

Black doesn?t have enough pieces left to sustain any kind of attack, so
White now drives Black?s Knight back.

15. a Nc6

16. d4
White gains space and at the same time takes control of square e5 away
from the Black Knight.

16... Kfs

17. Bf4
White?s Bishop attacks the pawn on c7.

17... Re7

18. Bd3

White sticks with his plan of trading pieces. Another good move is
18.Nb5, which would attack the c7-pawn.



18... Bxd3
19. Kxd3 a6
Black keeps White?s Knight from moving to b5.

20. Rhet
White continues his trading policy.
20. ... Rxe1

21. Rxel Nd8&
Black has no way to defend the c7-pawn.

22. Bxc7 Ne6

23. Bg3  Ke8

24. Ne2
It?s time to put the Knight to work. Remember, don?t play with only one
or two pieces. Use all of your army!

24. ... Kd7

25. Nb4
The White Knight attacks the d5-pawn and prevents the Black King from
coming to the pawn?s defense by moving to c6.

25. we Nc7

26. Bxc7
Success! All of Black?s pieces are gone. His King and remaining pawns
cannot hope to withstand the power of White?s Rook and Knight.

26... Kxc7

27, Re7+
This move is even stronger than 27.Nxd5+. White?s Rook will now eat
everything in its path.

27. ae Kd6 30. Rxg7 Ke6
28. Rxf7 a5 31. Rxh7 ~~ Kf5
29. Ne2 bo 32. Rh6é

Annotated Games


Note how helpless Black is. In fact, Black?s cause is completely hopeless,
but he plays until the bitter end.

32... b5 35. Nxb4 Kg5

33. Rb6 b4 36. Nxd5

34. cxb4 = axb4

Black?s army is completely wiped out! Now all that remains is for White

to checkmate the King.
36. ... Kf5
37. 3

Also effective is for White to advance his a-pawn and crown a new Queen.
Checkmate would then be easy. But White sees a more satisfying finale.
37. wn Kg5 39, h3 Kg5
38, g3 Kf5 40. h4+ KES

Black can also play 40...Kh5, leading to 41.Nf4 checkmate.
41. g4 checkmate

As this game shows, capturing all your opponent?s pieces can be a most
effective way of winning the battle.

The Danger of Weakening
Your King?s Position

Game 7: Frank Melville Teed-Eugene Delmar,
New York, 1896

1. d4 f5

This move is called the Dutch Defense. Black wants to place his Knight
behind the f5-pawn and exert maximum pressure on square e4. The one
slight drawback to this opening is that it opens the h5-e8 diagonal and
exposes the Black King.



2. Bg5
A sharp reply. White pins the Black pawn on e7 and goads Black into
advancing his Kingside pawns, thereby weakening the Black King?s

2. une h6
Black takes the bait! Notice how more and more holes are developing
around the Black King. Those holes may eventually serve as entry points
for the White pieces.

3. Bh4
White retreats out of danger while continuing to pin the e7-pawn.

3. awe g5
Black thinks he is going to capture White?s Bishop. Encircling tactics
often do win material, but in this case, Black?s weakened Kingside
interferes with his materialistic plans.

4. Bg3
The White Bishop has no other place to go.

4. 4
Black traps the Bishop.

5. @3!
A rude shock. White makes a double threat: 6.Qh5 checkmate or 6.exf4,
saving the Bishop and winning a pawn.

5. lee h5
Black neutralizes the 6.Qh5 threat and intends to meet 6.exf4 with 6...h4,
which renews the attack on the Bishop.

6. Bd3
The other White Bishop takes advantage of a hole in the Black camp.
Now White threatens 7.Bg6 checkmate.

6. oa Rh6
Black thinks he has stopped the checkmate and will finally capture the
g3-Bishop. A surprise awaits him.

Annotated Games


7. Qxh5+!!
White draws the Black Rook away from its control of g6.
7. ane Rxh5

8. Bg6 checkmate

Game 8: ZeissI-Walter Von Walthoffen, Vienna, 1898

1. e4 e5
2. Nf3 Nc6
3. Bb5

This is the Ruy Lopez Opening, one of the oldest and most respected
openings. White quickly develops his Kingside pieces and prepares to
castle, while pressuring Black?s pawn on e5.

3. ans {5
A sharp but risky response. Black attacks White in the center but
weakens his King position at the same time. Safer moves are 3...Nf6 or
3...a6. Note that after 3...a6 White would not win a pawn with 4.Bxc6
dxc6 5.Nxe5, because with Qd4, Black counterattacks both White?s
Knight and the e4-pawn.

4. d4
White avoids 4.exf5 e4, because his Knight would get kicked around. The
best move here is 4.Nc3, which would develop a piece and defend the

pawn on e4.
4. as fxe4
Black forces White to move his Knight and make some attempt to regain
his lost pawn.
5. Nxed
Material is once again equal.
5. ae Nxe5

6. dxe5_ c6!



Material is still equal after the trades. However, the White Bishop is now
under attack and White must move it to a place of safety. The problem is
Black?s hidden threat to pick up White?s pawn on e5.

7. Bcd
White gives up a pawn for nothing. A better fighting chance is 7.Nc3! cxb5
8.Nxe4. Though White would be 2 points behind, he would have a lead in
development, more space, and chances for attack. For example, 8...d5
would lose another pawn to 9.exd6 e.p. (remember, e.p. stands for en
passant), and the developing 8...Ne7 would run into 9.Nd6 checkmate.

7. ane Qa5+
A double attack. Black hits White?s King and the e5-pawn.

8 = Nc3 Qxe5
Black is now 1 point ahead. What makes matters really bad for White is
that Black pawns firmly control the center, restricting the movement of

White?s army.

9, O-O d5
Black gains space and time, because White is forced to sound the retreat
for his Bishop.

10. Bb3 Nf6
Black pays special attention to time now that he has the advantage in

space and force.
11. Be3

White has a lead in development, but Black?s center pawns effectively
block the White pieces.

1... Bd6
A very strong move. Black develops a piece, prepares to castle, and
threatens to checkmate White with 12...Qxh2.

12. g3
A terrible move, because it creates holes in the White King?s position.
Here, however, White has no choice, because Black would counter the

Annotated Games


other possibility, 12.f4, with exf4 e.p. The ...Qxh2 would still be a threat,
and the e3-Bishop would be attacked. Black has forced White to weaken
his Kingside?a strategy well worth copying!

12... Bg4!
The problem with weakening squares is that enemy pieces tend to head
toward them. When Black sees that f3 has been weakened (no White
pawn can defend it), he hastens to plant a piece there. The fact that he
can develop at the same time is a bonus for Black.

13. Qd2 Bf
As you can see in Diagram 111, the holes around White?s King allow
Black?s pieces to infiltrate. Drafty
positions of this kind often give rise
to a quick and violent checkmate.

14. Bf4
White attacks both Black?s Queen
and Bishop, hoping to trade a piece
or two and ease his defensive bur-
den. This strategy is usually a good
one for the defender, but here it is
simply too late.

14... Qhs!
If White captures the Bishop, he DIAGRAM 111.
will be checkmated, because 15.Bxd6 would lead to Qh3, followed by
16...Qg2 checkmate.

15. Nd1
White brings his Knight around to defend square g2 and attempt to stave
off checkmate.

15.0. Qh3
Another Black piece penetrates White?s position. Now 16...Qg2 check-
mate is threatened.


















16. Ne3
White stops the checkmate.
16... Ng!

Still another Black piece joins the attack. This time, 17...Qxh2 checkmate
is the threat.

17. Rfel
White tries to create an escape for his King. Another possible move,
17.Nxg4, would lead to 17...Qg2 checkmate.

17. ne Qxh2+

18. Kf Qh1 checkmate
This horrible rout was made possible by the holes in White?s Kingside,
which invited the Black pieces to penetrate White?s position.

The Satisfaction of Learning

Congratulations! You?ve just played through a number of chess games
that featured many classical lessons. Learn these lessons well, and you
will suffer fewer losses on your road to chess mastery.


eee ee

The Four Principles
and You

ost beginners find the idea of calculating a string of chess
Moore on the fly terrifying?they feel they just can?t do it.

Actually, lots of players with a good deal of experience behind
them feel the same way. Don?t worry about it! Being able to accurately
calculate moves comes only after you understand and practice the basic
principles of the game. Force, time, space, and pawn structure: These are
the elements you should work on. When you have a thorough grasp of
these four principles, calculating which moves to make and when to make
them will become a cinch.

Some top players prefer to strategically assess their games in terms
of the four principles, even though they have the knowledge and ex-
perience to make rapid calculations. As an example, let?s go back to the
1960 World Championship match between Mikhail Botvinnik (the cham-
pion) and Mikhail Tal (the challenger).

For many years, Botvinnik had ruled world chess. His style was
profoundly strategic, but aggressive. Whenever possible, he would come
to decisions using the principles that we have studied in this book. Tal,
on the other hand, was famous for his ability to calculate long strings of
moves with amazing rapidity. During one game, Tal was on the attack.
Botvinnik, thinking for a long time, decided on the correct defensive
strategy and drew the game. Afterwards, Tal listed a huge series of move



eae eee eee
QUIZ 32. Which statement is false?

@ You should calculate every possible move and counter-

@ Calculating moves is useful, but applying general princi-
ples so that you can recognize potential weaknesses is just
as important.




variations, thinking that Botvinnik had arrived at the correct strategy
by calculating the same possibilities. The young challenger was dumb-
founded when the champion stated that he had decided on an overall
strategy by weighing his position in the light of the principles?he had
made very few calculations. The two different approaches had, however,
led to the same solution!

By the way, Tal eventually won this match (best of 21 games) and
became World Champion. However, one year later Botvinnik was granted
a rematch and decisively won back his title.

Psychological Factors

It has often been said that people are their own worst enemies. The
saying is particularly applicable to chess players. We can memorize all
the openings; we can study the middlegame and master thousands of
different positions; we can become endgame experts. But even with
experience and significant accomplishments under our belts, we can still
be influenced by psychological factors that inhibit the way we play. Let?s
look at the two biggest mental pitfalls: stress and lack of confidence.

The Four Principles and You


Stress is the bane of the serious chess player. A game of tournament
chess lasts several hours. If money or ego is on the line, the situation can
become very stressful. As stress builds, thinking becomes clouded and
nerves start to fray. Some people short-circuit altogether, making
blunders they would never make under more casual circumstances.

Obviously, chess players must learn to keep calm. Deep breathing is
a good method. Grandmaster Svetozar Gligoric used to eat chocolate
throughout his games, following the advice of legendary World Cham-
pion Alexander Alekhine:

?A brain without sugar is not a brain.?

To avoid becoming a sugar addict (not to mention obese), Fischer
drank apple and orange juice throughout his games. Though juice has a
high sugar content, it seems more healthy than pounds of chocolate!

Lack of Confidence
A chess player?s confidence is only as solid as his last victory, and loss
can transform him into an insecure wimp. If more losses follow, he
becomes even more unsure of himself, creating a crisis of confidence that
is hard to snap out of.

Only you can prevent this crisis from developing. If you lose, consider
what you have learned from the experience and keep on playing. Apply
the information I?ve given you in this book, and sooner or later you will
start turning the tables, winning as many games as you lose.

Be prepared to lose and to win. In mastering anything, you?re bound
to have setbacks. Learn from your losses.

It?s amazing what lack of confidence and the fear that comes with it
can do. Suppose, for example, that a fairly low-rated player (White) is
playing a well-known master (Black). White has a defeatist attitude from



Peewee ree eee eee eee eee

QUIZ 33. Which statement is false?

@ Itis important to find out how strong your opponent is so
that you can play accordingly.

M@ Play an aggressive game to win against anyone, no matter
what their strength.

@ Don?t let losses bother you. Figure out why you lost and
use that insight in your next game.




the beginning, and his thinking all along is, ?I don?t even need to analyze
this move. If such a strong player makes this threat, then I know it must
be good.? Of course, Black wins the game without much difficulty.

Now suppose that White is playing a complete beginner or someone
with a lower rating than himself. White looks long and hard for a way to
win. Faced with exactly the same positions as in the first scenario, his
thinking now goes like this: ?I really want to beat this guy. IfI take on d7,
I threaten a Back Rank Mate. If he then plays 1...Qxh2+, I just step aside.
He will soon run out of checks and I will win.? Notice the change in

Don?t change your approach to the game out of fear! Play aggressively
to win against anyone, even the World Champion.

Photo Album

ee eee ee



Chess is not just a sport for brainy intellectuals but for the
masses! These four photographs show hundreds of players
competing in the 1989 Software Toolworks Open Tournament.


In tournaments, chess clocks are used to time each player?s
moves. If a player fails to make the required number of moves in
a specified period of time, he loses.

Phote Album



In tournament chess, each player keeps his own record of the
game. Later, the record will provide lessons on what to do or
not to do in the future.


In this ocean of chess players, note the empty chairs. Some
players are tardy! Chess players are notorious late risers.




In the U.S. Championship, America?s strongest Grandmasters
annually compete in a round robin. Moves are recorded on a
demonstration board so that the audience can follow the games.


During the 1989-90 U.S. Championship, International Master
Jack Peters lectures on the games in progress.

Photo Album



Yugoslavia?s highest-ranked female chess player, Alisa Maric,
studies her position.


Grandmasters Yasser Seirawan and Nick de Firmian engage in a
Blitz game before the television cameras. tn Blitz, each player
has 5 minutes to complete the game. Blitz is one of the most
popular forms of chess.




Grandmaster Maxim Dlugy The 1988-89 U.S. Women?s
probes the mysteries of his Champion, Alexy Rudolph
position. Root, flashes a winning smile.


Your author, masking his anxi- International Master Stuart
ety: ?Oh boy, what am | going Rachels pulled off the biggest
to do next?? upset of his career by tying

for first place in the 1989-90
U.S. Championship.

Photo Album



Alisa Maric, Yugoslavia?s
highest-ranked female chess
player, is a youthful 18 years.




aK Z

a |


. ? ; ki }

Arthur Drake, a 75-year-old

former U.S. Olympic team
player, still pushes the pieces.


Yasser Seirawan?s first game against then-World Champion
Anatoly Karpov took place in Mar del Plata, Argentina in 1982.
Hundreds of spectators watched this 13-hour game, which was
played over two days. The final result was a draw. In this post-
mortem, Seirawan points out his crucial error.



Nona Alexandria, one of the Soviet Union?s finest Female
Grandmasters (FGMs), performs a simultaneous exhibition. In

this case, Alexandria plays 40 opponents.


Spectators crowd the simultaneous exhibition as Alexandria
closes in for the kill.

Photo Album



Alexandria gets a smile from her student.




Grandmaster Tony Miles (left) plays against the monster
chess program Deep Thought. Note the portable computer,

which is connected via modem to the supercomputers at Bell


Active: In relation to an opponent?s style, denotes a preference for
aggressive or tactical types of play. Otherwise, means an aggressive move
or position.

Advantage: A net superiority of position, usually based on force, time,
space, or pawn structure.

Algebraic Notation: Many ways of writing chess moves have been de-
vised over the years. In fact, there are probably as many ways of writing
chess moves as there are languages. However, algebraic notation has
become the international standard.

Essentially, each square on the chessboard is given a letter and a
number. The files are assigned the letters a, b, c, d, e, f, g, and h, from left
to right from White?s perspective. The ranks are assigned the numbers
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8, from bottom to top from White?s perspective. Thus,
the bottom left corner is square al and the top right corner is square h8.

When a piece travels from one square to another, algebraic notation
enables you to identify the piece and the square to which it is moving.
For example, if the Rook moves from square al to square a8, you write
Ra8. For pawn moves, you write only the square to which the pawn moves;
for example, e4. Castling Kingside is written O-O, and castling Queenside
is written 0-0-0. In this book, algebraic notation is sometimes referred
to as chess notation or simply notation.



Analysis: The calculation of a series of moves based on a particular
position. In tournament play, you are not allowed to move the pieces
during analysis but must make all calculations in your head. When the
game is over, opponents commonly analyze the game they have just
played, moving the pieces about in an effort to discover what the best
moves would have been. See also Postmortem.

Annotation: Written comments about a position or game. The comments
can take the form of narrative, chess notation, or a combination of both.

Attack: To start an aggressive action in a particular area of the board, or
to threaten to capture a piece or pawn.

Backward Pawn: A pawn that has fallen behind its comrades and can no
longer be defended by another pawn. Such a pawn is usually considered
a weakness.

Berserker: A playing style characterized by frenzied attacks with one or
two pieces. Named after ancient Scandinavian warriors who worked
themselves up into battle frenzies and then charged their opponents with
little regard for strategy or personal danger.

Bind: When one player has a grip on the position because of a large
advantage in space and his opponent is unable to find useful moves.

Bishop Pair: Two Bishops versus a Bishop and a Knight or two Knights.
Two Bishops work well together because they can control diagonals of
both colors. See also Opposite-Colored Bishops.

Blockade: To stop an enemy pawn by placing a piece (ideally a Knight)
directly in front of it. Popularized by Aaron Nimzowitsch.

Blunder: A terrible move that loses material or involves decisive posi-
tional or tactical concessions.



Book: Opening analysis found in chess books and magazines. A book
player relies heavily on memorization of published material rather than
on his own creative spark.

Break: The offer of an exchange of pawns in order to gain space or
mobility. Also called a pawn break.

Breakthrough: Denotes a penetration of the enemy position.

Brilliancy: A game that contains a stunning sacrifice or an amazing
strategic concept. Sometimes such a game receives a special monetary
award for excellence, called a brilliancy prize.

Calculation of Variations: The working out of chains of moves without
physically moving the pieces.

Castle: A player castles by moving his King and Rook simultaneously.
Castling is the only move in which a player can deploy two pieces in one
move. Castling allows a player to move his King out of the center (the
main theater of action in the opening) to the flank, where the King can
be protected by pawns. Additionally, castling develops a Rook.

When White castles Kingside, he moves his King from el to g1 and
his h1-Rook to f1. When Black castles Kingside, he moves his King from
e8 to g8 and his h8-Rook to {8. When White castles Queenside, he moves
his King from el to cl and his al-Rook to di. And when Black castles
Queenside, he moves his King from e8 to c8 and his a8-Rook to d8.

Center: The center is the area of the board encompassed by the rectan-
gle c3-c6-f6-f3. Squares e4, d4, e5, and d5 are the most important part of
the center. The e- and d-files are the center files.



Centralize: To place pieces and pawns in the center, or as close to the
center as possible. From there, they can control a good chunk of enemy

Checkmate: An attack against the enemy King from which the King
cannot escape. When a player checkmates his opponent?s King, he wins
the game.

Classical: Astyle of play that focuses on the creation ofa full pawn center.
Classical principles tend to be rather dogmatic and inflexible. The philos-
ophy of the classical players was eventually challenged by the so-called
?hypermoderns.? See also Hypermodern.

Closed Game: A position that is obstructed by blocking chains of pawns.
Such a position tends to favor Knights over Bishops, because the pawns
block the diagonals.

Combination: A calculable, tactical series of moves that usually involves
a sacrifice.

Compensation: An advantage in one area that balances the opponent?s
advantage in another area. Material versus development is one example;
three pawns versus a Bishop is another.

Connected Passed Pawns: Two or more passed pawns of the same color
on adjacent files. See also Passed Pawns.

Control: To completely dominate an area of the board. Dominating a file
or a square, or simply having the initiative, can constitute control.

Counterplay: When the player who has been on the defensive starts his
own aggressive action.



Cramp: The lack of mobility that is the usual result of a disadvantage
in space.

Critical Position: An important pointin the game, where victory or defeat
hangs in the balance.

Defense: A move or series of moves designed to thwart an enemy attack.
Also used in the names of many openings initiated by Black. Examples
are the French Defense and the Caro?Kann Defense.

Development: The process of moving pieces from their starting posi-
tions to new posts, from which they control a greater number of squares
and have greater mobility.

Doubled Pawns: Two pawns of the same color lined up on a file. This
doubling can only come about as the result of a capture.

Draw: Atied game. A draw can result from a stalemate, from a three-time
repetition of position, or by agreement between the players. See also
Stalemate; Three-Time Repetition of Position.

Dynamic: Implies action and movement. A dynamic factor concerns
itself with actual moves and threats and involves combinations of attack
and defense maneuvers. The two main aspects of a dynamic factor are
time and force.

Elo Rating: The system by which players are rated. Devised by Professor
Arpad Elo (1903- ) of Milwaukee and adopted by FIDE in 1970. A
beginner might have a 900 rating, the average club player 1600, a state
champion 2300, and the World Champion 2800.

En Passant: A French term that means 7? passing. When a pawn advances
two squares (which it can do only if it has not moved before) and passes
an enemy pawn on an adjacent file that has advanced to its 5th rank, it can



be captured by the enemy pawn as if it had moved only one square. The
capture is optional and must be made at the first opportunity; otherwise,
the right to capture that particular pawn under those particular circum-
stances is lost.

En Prise: A French term that means i take. It describes a piece or pawn
that is vulnerable to capture.

Endgame: The third and final phase of achess game. An endgame arises
when few pieces remain on the board. The clearest signal that the ending
is about to begin is when Queens are exchanged.

Equality: A situation in which neither side has an advantage or the
players? advantages balance out.

Exchange: The trading of pieces, usually ones of equal value.

Exchange, The: Winning the exchange means you have won a Rook (5
points) for a Bishop or a Knight (3 points).

Fianchetto: An Italian term that means on the flank and applies only to
Bishops. Few players pronounce this word properly, the correct pronun-
ciation being: fyan-KET-to. A fianchetto is placing a White Bishop on g2
or b2 or a Black Bishop on g7 or b7.

FIDE: The acronym for Fédération Internationale des Echecs, the interna-
tional chess federation.

File: A vertical column of eight squares. Designated in algebraic notation
as the a-file, b-file, and so on. See also Half-Open; Open.

Flank: The a-, b-, and c-files on the Queenside, and the f, g-, and h-files
on the Kingside. Flank openings start with moves on the flanks (such as



1.b3, 1.c4, and 1.Nf3) and usually involve a fianchetto and attempts to
control the center squares with pawns and pieces from the flanks.

Force: Material. An advantage in force arises when one player has more
material than his opponent or when he outmans his opponent in a certain
area of the board.

Forced: A move or series of moves that must be played if disaster is to
be avoided.

Forfeit: See Resign.

Gambit: The voluntary sacrifice of at least a pawn in the opening, with
the idea of gaining a compensating advantage (usually time, which
permits development).

General Principles: The fundamental rules of chess, devised to enable
less advanced players to react logically to different positions. Also used
more often than you would think by Grandmasters!

Ghost: The illusion of a threat. Fear of the opponent or an overly nervous
disposition can easily lead to the ?perception? of ghosts.

Grandmaster: A title awarded by FIDE to players who meet an estab-
lished set of performance standards, including a high Elo rating. It is the
highest title (other than World Champion) attainable in chess. A separate
Female Grandmaster title is awarded to distinguished women chess
players. Lesser titles are International Master and FIDE Master, which is
the lowest title awarded for international play. Once earned, a Grandmas-
ter title cannot be taken away. See also Elo Rating; Master.

Grandmaster Draw: A quick, uninteresting draw between two
Grandmasters. Nowadays, this term is applied to a quick draw between
any class of player.



Half-Open: A file that contains none of one player?s pawns, but one or
more of his opponent's.

Hang: To be unprotected and exposed to capture.

Hanging Pawns: A pawn island consisting of two pawns side by side on
the 4th rank on half-open files. Sometimes, pawn islands are the source
of dynamic energy for an attack; at other times, they become a target,
subject to frontal attack by the enemy.

Hold: To avoid defeat. To stave off loss. However, to hold out is to offer
tough resistance, but to eventually lose against a better play. A move that
would hold the position is one that would most likely allow a successful

Hole: Asquare that cannot be defended by a pawn. Such a square makes
an excellent home for a piece, because the piece cannot be chased away
by hostile pawns.

Hypermodern: A school of thought that arose in reaction to the classical
theories of chess. The hypermoderns insisted that putting a pawn in the
center in the opening made it a target. The heroes of this movement were
Richard Réti and Aaron Nimzowitsch, both of whom expounded the idea
of controlling the center from the flanks. Like the ideas of the classicists,
those of the hypermoderns can be carried to extremes. Nowadays, both
views are seen as correct. A distillation of the two philosophies is needed
to cope successfully with any particular situation. See also Classical.

Initiative: When you are able to make threats to which your opponent
must react, you are said to possess the initiative.

Innovation: A new move in an established opening.



Intuition: Finding the right move or strategy by ?feel? rather than by

Isolated Pawn: A pawn with no like-colored pawns on either adjacent file.
The drawbacks of an isolated pawn are that it is not guarded by a friendly
pawn and that the square directly in front of it can make a nice home for
an enemy piece, because no pawns can chase that piece away. On the
other hand, an isolated pawn has plenty of space and controls squares on
the open (or half-open) files on either side of it, with the result that minor
pieces and Rooks of the same color usually become active. An isolated
pawn is, however, considered a weakness.

Kingside: The half of the board made up of the e, f, g, and h files. Kingside
pieces are the King, the Bishop next to it, the Knight next to the Bishop,
and the Rook next to the Knight. See also Queenside.

Liquidation: A series of trades culminating in a drawn or won endgame.
Defensively, liquidation is used to trade attacking pieces and neutralize
the force of an enemy assault.

Luft: A German term that means air. By extension, it means to give the
King breathing room. It describes a pawn move made in front of the King
of the same color to avoid Back Rank Mate possibilities.

Major Pieces: Queens and Rooks. Also called heavy pieces.

Maneuver: A series of seemingly nonaggressive moves designed to
favorably redeploy the pieces. A maneuver is carried out with a strategic
goal in mind.

Master: In the U.S., a player with a rating of 2200 or more. If a player?s
rating drops below 2200, the title is rescinded. See also Grandmaster.

Mate: Short for checkmate.



Material: All the pieces and pawns. A material advantage is when a
player has more pieces on the board than his opponent or has pieces of
greater value. See also Point Count.

Mating Attack: An attack on the enemy King, with checkmate as the
ultimate goal.

Middlegame: The phase between the opening and the endgame.
Minor Pieces: The Bishops and Knights.

Mobility: Freedom of movement for the pieces.

Notation: See Algebraic Notation.

Occupation: A Rook or Queen that controls a file or rank is said to occupy
that file or rank. A piece is said to occupy the square it is sitting on.

Open: Short for open game or open file. Also refers to a type of tourna-
ment in which any strength of player can participate. Though a player
often ends up with opponents who are stronger or weaker than himself,
the prizes are usually structured around different rating groups, with
prizes for the top scorers in each group. Such open tournaments are
extremely popular in the United States. See also Open File; Open Game.

Open File: Avertical column of eight squares that is free of pawns. Rooks
reach their maximum potential when placed on open files or open ranks.

Open Game: A position characterized by many open ranks, files, or
diagonals and few center pawns. A lead in development becomes very
important in positions of this type.



Opening: The start of a game, incorporating the first dozen or so moves.
The basic goals of an opening are to

@ Develop pieces as quickly as possible.
M Control as much of the center as possible.

@ Castle early and get the King to safety, while at the same
time bringing the Rooks toward the center and placing
them on potentially open files.

Openings: Established sequences of moves that lead to the goals out-
lined under Opening. These sequences of moves are often named after
the player who invented them or after the place where they were first
played. Some openings, such as the Ruy Lopez and the Sicilian, have been
analyzed to great lengths in chess literature.

Opposite-Colored Bishops: Also Bishops of opposite color. When players
have one Bishop each and the Bishops are on different-colored squares.
Opposite-colored Bishops can never come into direct contact.

Overextension: When space is gained too fast. By rushing his pawns
forward and trying to control a lot of territory, a player can leave
weaknesses in his camp, or can weaken the advanced pawns themselves.
He is then said to have overextended his position.

Passed Pawn: Apawn whose advance to the 8th rank cannot be prevented
by any enemy pawn and whose promotion to a piece is therefore inevita-
ble. See also Promotion; Underpromotion.

Passive: In relation to a move, denotes a move that does nothing to fight
for the initiative. In relation to a position, denotes a position that is devoid
of counterplay or active possibilities.



Pawn Center: Pawns that are inside the rectangle bounded by squares
c3, £3, £6, and cé.

Pawn Chain: A diagonal line of same-colored pawns.

Pawn Island: A group of pawns that cannot protect anything or be
protected by at least one other pawn. Having fewer pawn islands than the
opponent is advantageous.

Pawn Structure: Also referred to as the pawn skeleton. All aspects of the
pawn setup, including pawn chains, doubled pawns, isolated pawns,
backward pawns, and so on.

Perpetual Check: When one player places his opponent in check, forcing
areply, followed by another check and another forced reply, followed by
another check that repeats the first position. Because such a game could
be played forever, after the position repeats itself the game is declared a
draw. See also Three-Time Repetition of Position.

Pig: Slang for Rook. Pigs on the 7th is acommon term for Rooks doubled
on the 7th rank.

Plan: A short- or long-range goal on which a player bases his moves.

Point: A square. Also, in tournament play, the winner of the game earns
a point. In the case of a draw, each player earns a half-point. See also
Support Point.

Point Count: A system that gives the pieces the following numeric
values: King?priceless; Queen?9 points; Rook?5 points; Bishop?3
points; Knight?3 points; and pawn?1 point.

Poisoned Pawn: A pawn whose capture is a precursor to a strong attack.



Positional: A move or style of play that is based on long-range consider-
ations. The slow buildup of small advantages is said to be positional.

Postmortem: A Latin term that means after death. After a hard session
of tournament chess, the players usually go to a special room where they
can analyze their game, or hold a postmortem.

Premature: Taking action without sufficient preparation.

Prepared Variation: In professional chess, it is common practice to
analyze book openings in the hope of finding a new move or plan. When
a player makes such a discovery, he will often save this prepared variation
for use against a special opponent.

Problem Child: Slang for a Bishop that is shut in by its own pawns. Such
a piece is usually inactive. For example, after 1.e4 e6 2.4 d5 3.e5 c5, Black
should have a reasonable game. However, Black?s one problem will be
the Bishop on c8, which is blocked by the e6 pawn. This Bishop is a
problem child.

Promotion: Also called gueening. When a pawn reaches the 8th rank, the
pawn can be promoted to a Bishop, Knight, Rook, or (most commonly)
Queen of the same color. See also Underpromotion.

Protected Passed Pawn: A passed pawn that is under the protection of
another pawn. See also Passed Pawn.

Queenside: The half of the board that includes the d-, c-, b-, and a?files.
The Queenside pieces are the Queen, the Bishop next to it, the Knight
next to the Bishop, and the Rook next to the Knight. See also Kingside.

Quiet Move: An unassuming move that is not a capture, a check, or a
direct threat. A quiet move often occurs at the end of a maneuver or
combination that drives the point home.



Rank: A horizontal row of eight squares. Designated in algebraic nota-
tion as the 1 (1st) rank, the 2 (2nd) rank, and so on.

Rating: A number that measures a player?s relative strength. The higher
the number, the stronger the player. See also Elo Rating.

Refutation: A move that demonstrates the flaw in another move or plan.

Resign: When a player realizes that he is going to lose and graciously
gives up the game without waiting for a checkmate. When resigning, a
player can simply say, ?I resign,? or he can tip his King over in a gesture
of helplessness. When you first start playing chess, I recommend that
you never resign. Always play until the end.

Risk: A move or plan that plays for an advantage while incubating the
seeds of danger.

Romantic: The Romantic (or Macho) era of chess from the early to mid
1800s, when sacrifice and attack were considered the only manly ways to
play. If a sacrifice was offered, it was considered a disgraceful show of
cowardice to refuse the capture. Today, a player who has a proclivity for
bold attacks and sacrifices, often throwing caution to the wind, is called
a romantic.

Sacrifice: The voluntary offer of material for compensation in space,
time, pawn structure, or even force. (A sacrifice can lead to a force
advantage in a particular part of the board.) Unlike a combination, a
sacrifice is not always a calculable commodity and often entails an ele-
ment of uncertainty.

Sharp: An aggressive move or position. In relation to a player, denotes
someone who enjoys dynamic, attacking chess.

Shot: A strong but unexpected move.



Simplify: To trade pieces to quiet down the position, to eliminate the
opponent?s attacking potential, or to clarify the situation.

Smothered Mate: When a King is completely surrounded by its own
pieces (or is at the edge of the board) and receives an unanswerable
check from the enemy, he is said to be a victim of Smothered Mate.

Sound: Acorrect move or plan. In relation to a position, denotes one that
is safe from all attack.

Space: The territory controlled by each player.

Space Count: A numerical system used to determine who controls more
space, in which 1 point is allocated to each square on one player?s side of
the board that is controlled by a piece or pawn belonging to the other

Speculative: Made without calculating the consequences to the extent
normally required. Sometimes full calculation is not possible, so a player
must rely on intuition, from which a speculative plan might arise.

Stalemate: In the English language, a stalemate refers to a standoff
between opposing forces. In chess terminology, astalemate occurs when
one player is so bottled up that he can make no legal move that won?t
expose his King to immediate capture. A stalemate results in a draw (a
tied game).

Static: Refers to an object not in motion, one that is not an immediate
threat but that will be around to influence the play for a long time.
Examples of static factors are space, control of squares, poorly situated
pieces, and various features of the pawn structure.

Strategy: The reasoning behind a move, plan, or idea.



Style: Players approach chess in different ways as a result of their
personalities and preferences. The types of move a player chooses are
usually indicative of the player as a person. Typically, in a game between
players of opposing styles (for example, an attacker versus a quiet
positional player), the winner will be the one who successfully imposes
his style on the other.

Support Point: A square that acts as a home for a piece (usually a
Knight). A square can be considered a support point only if it cannot be
attacked by an enemy pawn, or if the enemy pawn?s advance would
severely weaken the enemy position.

Swindle: A trap that holds or wins an inferior position.

Symmetry: A situation in which both sides have the same position. Often
arises when Black copies White?s moves.

Tactics: Situations that are based on the calculation of variations. A
position with many traps and combinations is considered to be tactical
in nature.

Tempo: One move, as a unit of time; the plural is tempz. If a piece can
reach a useful square in one move but takes two moves to get there, it
has lost a tempo. For example, after 1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.Qxd4 Ncé6, Black
gains a tempo and White loses one, because the White Queen is attacked
and White must move his Queen a second time to get it to safety.

Theory: Well-known opening, middlegame, and endgame positions that
are documented in books.

Threat: A move or plan that intends to somehow damage the enemy



Three-Time Repetition of Position: Occurs when the players have been
moving back and forth, repeating the same position. Often happens when
a player, behind in material and facing eventual loss, sacrifices for a
perpetual check (see Perpetual Check). A three-time repetition of posi-
tion results in a draw (a tied game).

Time: In this book, in addition to the common use of the word (?Black
does not have time to stop all of White?s threats?), time is a measure of
development. Also refers to thinking time, as measured on a chess clock.
See Time Control. See also Tempo.

Time Control: The amount of time in which each player must play a
specified number of moves. In international competitions, the typical time
control is 40 moves in 2 hours for each player. After each player has made
40 moves, each is given an additional amount of time (usually 1 hour for
20 moves). If a player uses up his time, but has not yet made the
mandatory number of moves, he loses the game by forfeit, no matter what
the position on the board.

Time Pressure: One of the most exciting moments in a tournament chess
game. When one or both players have used up most of their time but still
have several moves to make before they reach the mandatory total of 40,
they start to make moves with increasing rapidity, sometimes slamming
down the pieces in frenzied panic. Terrible blunders are typical in this
phase. Some players get into time pressure at almost every game and are
known as time-pressure addicts.

Transition: The point at which one phase of the game changes into
another; for example, the transition from the opening into the middle-
game or from the middlegame into the endgame.



Transposition: Reaching an identical opening position by a different
order of moves. For example, the French Defense is usually reached by
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5, but 1.d4 e6 2.e4 d5 transposes into the same position.

Trap: Away ofsurreptitiously luring the opponent into making a mistake.

Unclear: An assessment of a position. Some positions are good for
White, others are good for Black, and still others are equal. Unclear
means that the analyst is unable or unwilling to state which applies.

Underpromotion: Promotion of a pawn to any piece other than a Queen.

Variation: One line of analysis in any phase of the game. It could be a
line of play other than the ones used in the game. The term variation is
frequently applied to one line of an opening; for example, the Wilkes?
Barre Variation (named after the city in Pennsylvania) of the Two Knights?
Defense. Variations can become as well-analyzed as their parent open-
ings. Entire books have been written on some well-known variations.

Weakness: Any pawn or square that is readily attackable and therefore
hard to defend.

Wild: A complicated position that requires precise analysis, but the
analysis is impeded by unexpected moves resulting in unclear positions.

Zugzwang: A German term that means compulsion to move. It refers to
a situation in which a player would prefer to do nothing because any move
leads to a deterioration of his position, but he moves something because
it is illegal to pass.

Zwischenzug: A German term that means in-between move. A surprising
move that, when inserted in an apparently logical sequence (for example,
a check that interrupts a series of exchanges), changes the result of that

ee ee

Answers to Quizzes
and Tests

Chapter One
QUIZ 1: The Xs are on squares a2, d5, and h7.

QUIZ 2: Compare your board with Diagram 8, which shows the pieces
and pawns in their correct starting positions.

QUIZ 3: White?s Rook cannot capture the Black Rook because the White
Queen is in the way. Rooks cannot jump over other pieces. White?s Rook
can capture the enemy Queen on d7, though this capture would be a trade
because Black would then capture White?s Queen with ...Rxf5. White?s
best moves are Queen moves, with Qxd7 being the strongest (because it
captures the Black Queen) and Qxg5 being the next strongest (because
it captures a Black Rook).

QUIZ 4: No, the Bishops can never take one another, because they are
permanently situated on opposite-colored squares. Because of this place-
ment, these pieces are called Bishops of opposite color. Each piece knows
the other exists, but for each, the other is like a ghost.

QUIZ 5: The White Knight can capture the Black pawns on f6 and d6, or
it can capture the Black Rook on c3. With this particular move, it cannot
capture the Black pawn on g4.



QUIZ 6: White?s pawn cannot move because it is blocked by the enemy
pawn on c5. If an enemy piece or pawn stood on b5 or d5, White?s pawn
could move by capturing it. As things stand, the pawn is effectively

QUIZ 7: White?s King can move to f8, e3, d3, f5, and d5, and it can also
capture the Black pawn on e5. Note that the King cannot go to f4 or d4,
because the pawn controls those squares. It is illegal for the King to walk
onto a controlled square and put itself in check.

QUIZ 8: White?s King has no way to get out of check. Therefore, it is in
checkmate and Black has won the game.

QUIZ 9: Black?s Rook on f7 can capture White?s pawn on f4 (with ...Rxf4,
though the Rook would then be captured with Qxf4). The Black Rook on
c3 can capture White?s Bishop on d3 (with ...Rxd3, though the Rook would
then be captured with Qxd3) or the pawn on c4 (with ...Rxc4, though the
Rook would then be captured by Bxc4). Black?s Knight on a5 can capture
the pawn on c4 (with ...Nxc4). The Black pawn on d5 can capture White?s
pawn on c4 (with ...dxc4) or the White Queen (with ...dxe4).

QUIZ10: Playing 1.Qf7 is an awful move because it stalemates Black and
thus forces a draw (a tied game). However, White can win by playing
1.Kg2 and marching the White King to g6 or h6. Then Qg7 checkmate
would be unstoppable.

QUIZ 11: White cannot capture the f5-pawn. En passant requires the
passing pawn?s first move to be two squares at once. In this case, Black?s
pawn was already sitting on f6 (in other words, it had moved before) and
moved just one square, instead of the obligatory two. If the pawn was
sitting on f7, instead of {6, and moved to f5, then White could capture en
passant if he wanted to.

Answers to Quizzes and Tests


QUIZ 12: White cannot castle in either direction. A Queenside castle is
not legal because the al-Rook has moved and now stands on bl. White
cannot castle Kingside because Black?s Bishop is attacking square f1 and
White cannot move his King through an attacked square. When the Black
Bishop moves out of the way (say, to f7), then White can castle Kingside
if he wants to.

Chapter Two

QUIZ 13: The White Knight can capture the Black Bishop (with Nxe6),
but after ...fxe6, White has succeeded only in making an equal trade.
White could also consider taking Black?s Knight with Nxf5. However, that
move also results in an even trade after ...Bxf5. From this position, White?s
most attractive move is Nxc2, taking a Rook for a Knight (called winning
the exchange). Always be on the lookout for ways to trade superior pieces
for inferior ones. See the discussion of the point count system in Chapter
Two, ?The First Principle: Force.?

QUIZ 14: Black should play the simple 1...Rfe8, putting his Rook on a
useful open file. A bad move is 1...Rfd8?, because after 2.Qxd8+ Rxd8
3.Rxd8+, White would have succeeded in capturing two Rooks for a
Queen?a 10 to 9 point-count advantage.

QUIZ 15: Playing 1.Qh5 brings another attacker and thus more force
over to the Kingside. Remember, the more pieces you can involve in an
attack, the more likely the attack is to succeed.

QUIZ 16: No! With 2.Nc7+, White has placed his Knight in a pin. Black
is by no means compelled to capture the Knight. Instead, he should play
2...Kd7. White will be unable to take Black?s Rook because doing so places
his King in jeopardy. To make matters worse, Black now threatens



White?s Knight twice, and White has no way to give it more support. Black
will win a piece on his next turn.

QUIZ 17: No! You must expect Black to see it. After 1.Nc4 d5!, Black has
stopped the threat, and the Knight must retreat. All White has accom-
plished is to allow Black to place another pawn firmly in the center, with
a gain of time.

QUIZ 18: It is impossible to checkmate with a King and a Bishop versus
alone King. Another man is needed?even a pawn will do. The same can
be said about a King and a Knight versus a lone King; checkmate is not
possible. Try various move combinations to convince yourself!

Chapter Three

QUIZ 19: White obviously has a big head start with his attack because
he has a tremendous proportion of his army already aimed at the Black
King?s position. With 1.Bd2! Qa4 2.Bc3, White has gained the time to
reposition his Bishop, by forcing Black to make a useless Queen move.
The threat of 3.Qxh7+ (using the pin on the Knight on f6) forces Black to
play 3...h5. White can then crash through with 4.Nxh5! (sacrificing in
order to charge Black?s King; White does not want to give Black any time
to form a counteroffensive) 4...gxh5 5.Qxh5+ Kg8 (the pin by the c3-
Bishop prevents the Knight from capturing the Queen) 6.Qh7+!! (also
good is 6.Bxf6, followed by a checkmate on h7) 6...Nxh7 7.Bxh7 check-

QUIZ 20: Definitely not! Black is already far behind in development.
Though he has advanced a pawn, he must start bringing his pieces out if
he wants the pawn to live. Playing 1...Qxa2? would move an already
developed piece and give White a few ways of winning. White could rip
open the position with 2.e5 and then go after Black?s King or go for a

Answers to Quizzes and Tests


material gain with 2.Ral Qxb2 3.Ba4+, resulting in a discovered attack on
Black?s Queen by its white counterpart on e2.

This kind of blunder inspired an old chess story. An old man lies on
his deathbed. He gestures for his son to come close so that the old man
can whisper an important bit of wisdom in his son?s ear. The son, full of
expectation, moves to the bed. The man says, ?Son, if you are behind in
development, don?t capture the pawns in front of your opponent?s Rooks!?

QUIZ 21: You should ignore the pawn. Instead, try to develop your
forces and castle as quickly as possible.

Chapter Four

QUIZ 22: White has a substantial space advantage. Black?s c5-pawn
controls b4 and d4 (2 points) and his f6-Knight controls e4 and g4 (2
points), for a total of just 4 points. White, on the other hand, is doing much
better. His a4-pawn controls b5 (1 point), his c4-pawn controls d5 and b5
(2 points), his d5-pawn attacks c6 and e6 (2 points), his e4-pawn eyes d5
and f5 (2 points), and his f4-pawn controls e5 and g5 (2 points). Both White
Knights also attack enemy territory: The c3-Knight controls b5 and d5 (2
points), and the f3-Knight controls e5 and g5 (2 points). The White Queen
hits d5 for (1 point). White?s total is 13.

QUIZ 23: Placing your pawns on the same color squares as your Bishop
is a bad idea, because the pawns block the Bishop and therefore cut down
on its potential activity.

QUIZ 24: Moves like 2...d6 leave you unnecessarily cramped. Why do
this to yourself? Black can fight for space with 2...d5. After 3.e5, Black
continues the fight for territory with 3...c5.

QUIZ 25: Avoid trades. They can only help your opponent.



Chapter Five

QUIZ 26: Playing 2.Nf3 allows Black to push White back with his pawns
by 2...e4. Now 3.Ng5 or 3.Nh4 both make the Knight vulnerable to Black?s
Queen. A move of 3.Nd4 leads to 3...c5 4.Nf5 (or 4.Nb5 d5 followed by
5,..a6) 4...d5 (with a discovered attack on the Knight by the c8-Bishop)
5.Ng3 f5. Black then has a huge pawn center, whereas White has only
moved his Knight repeatedly.

QUIZ 27: Playing 1...Nh5 attacks the weak f4-pawn with the Bishop and
the Knight and also with the Rook on f8. By throwing most of his army
into an attack against White?s weakness, Black will win the pawn and will
obtain a material advantage. Note that Black?s doubled pawn on gé6 is
firmly protected by the h7-pawn and is not weak at all.

QUIZ 28: ?Doubled pawns are always weak? is a false statement. Dou-
bled pawns are often weak, but they can also serve some useful functions
by defending extra squares that a normal pawn could not.

QUIZ 29: You should attack a pawn chain at its base. The base here is
d4. If you can destroy the d4 point, then the advanced pawn on e5 will be
deprived of an important defender and very likely will fall. Black?s best
move is 1...c5!, attacking the base. After 2.dxc5 Nxc5, White guards e5
with one piece while Black attacks it with three. White will inevitably lose
the e5-pawn.

QUIZ 30: ?Usually you can safely postpone castling for quite a while in
open positions? is a false statement. In open positions, it is extremely
dangerous not to castle as quickly as possible.

QUIZ 31: Reaching an endgame means that you have traded most of the
pieces. With most of the pieces gone, it is important to rush your King

Answers to Quizzes and Tests


into battle as quickly as possible. Remember, the King is a strong piece.
Use it when it is safe to do so!

Chapter Seven

QUIZ 32: ?You must calculate every possible move and countermove? is
a false statement. Calculating everything out is always time-consuming,
often impractical, and sometimes impossible!

QUIZ 33: ?It is important to find out how strong your opponent is so that
you can play accordingly? is a false statement. Don?t worry about your
opponent?s chess skill, good looks, or financial situation. Just play the
best game you can, and always play to win!

Chapter One

TEST 1: White has four ways to get out of check. The first is to capture
the offending Bishop with his f3-Knight via 5.Nxh4, though Black would
play 5...Qxh4+ and White would still be faced with check. The second is
to block with a pawn via 5.g3. The flaw here is that White loses the pawn
via 5...fxg3. The other two possibilities are 5.Ke2 and 5.Kfi, by which
White simply steps out of the way. However, White then loses the right
to castle.

TEST 2: This exercise is a good way of teaching the power of the Queen.
Though the Knight will try to run away, it will prove no match for the
mighty Queen. White has several ways to capture the Knight, but one
simple method is

1. Qe0e7
White threatens to take the beast.



Loo. Nc6
The only safe square.
2. Qd6
White once again threatens to eat the horse. Note that the Knight?s most
central squares?e5, e7, d8, d4, b4 and b8?are all covered by the Queen.
2. ase Nad
3. Qds!
Other moves (such as 3.Qc5) leave the Knight with places to run to. After
3.Qd5!, all the Knight?s escape squares are covered and it is caught.

TEST 3: You can crown a new Queen in many ways from this position,
and I heartily recommend that you play around with this puzzle for a while
to test some of the possibilities. The idea is to learn how pawns react to
each other. Here is one possible series of moves:

1. d4 d5 6. f3 5

2. e3 b6 7. g4 fxg4
3. b4 b5 8. fxg4 25
4. a3 a6 9. h3 h6é
5. 3 c6

Now White has no more useful moves and is forced to start giving up
material, when he would really rather just sit tight and do nothing. (This
type of situation is called zugzwang.)

10. e4 dxe4

11.0 «d5 cxd5
White has now lost all his pawns. White obviously did not play well or this
situation would not have arisen. Play through the moves and try to
improve White?s play!

TEST 4: If it is White?s move, he can castle on either side. On the
Queenside, his Rook would pass through an attacked square, which is
allowed. (The King, however, can?t pass through an attacked square.) On

Answers to Quizzes and Tests


the Kingside, White?s Rook is attacked, but he can still castle as long as
his Rook has not moved.

If it is Black?s move, he cannot castle on either side, because the
Knight on e6 attacks both squares f8 and d8. The Black King would have
to move through an attacked square to castle, which is illegal.

TEST 5: The White Knight can?t capture anything. If the Knight moves,
White?s King would be exposed to attack by the Rook on d8. Because
putting your own King in check is illegal, White must leave his Knight on
d4. This concept, called a pin, is explained in detail in Chapter Two, ?The
First Principle: Force.?

TEST 6: Normally, Black would be happy to get his material back with
1...Nxb4. However, in this case, he has the wonderful possibility of 1...Ne2
checkmate. Remember the old chess saying: ?When you see a good
move, sit on your hands and look for a better one!?

TEST 7: No! Don?t play 1.Qxf7?? because it creates a stalemate. A better
move is 1.Qh3+ Nh6 2.Qxh6 checkmate. Taking the opponent?s material
is usually a great idea, but be careful: Greed has a way of blinding us!

TEST 8: Trading pieces with 1.Rxd7 is a good, safe move. A bad mistake
is 1.Nd5??, which simply loses a piece to 1...Rxd5 or 1...Nxd5. When you
head for a particular square, be careful that you guard it as many times
as the opponent attacks it.

TEST 9: After 1...Rfe8 2.Rxe8 Rxe8, Black would not have accomplished
much. Crushing, though, is 1...Rfd8!, which threatens the Queen and
intends to destroy the Rook on d1, the only piece guarding White?s Knight
oncl. After 1...Rfd8, White would like to take on d8 by 2.Qxd8 Rxd8 3.Rxd8,
but that series of moves would lose the Knight to 3...Qxc1+. Also bad is
2.Qb3 Rxd1+ 3.Qxd1 Qxcl, which gives Black an extra Knight. Take one



last look at the difference between the two moves: 1...Rfe8 places the Rook
on an open file but puts no pressure on White, whereas 1...Rfd8! makes
an immediate threat. Always try to play aggressively.

Chapter Two

TEST 10: Black must avoid 1...Ne6, because of the pawn fork that results
from 2.d5. A better move is 1...Ng6.

TEST 11: This position demonstrates a Bishop pin. With 1.Bf3, White wins
a whole Rook, because if the Rook on d5 moves, the Rook on a8 will fall.

TEST 12: Though 1...Rxc5 would normally be a good move because it
equalizes the material, White can do even better with 1...Rh1+, because
he then wins the al-Rook . This tactic, called a skewer, is like a pin, except
that when the more valuable piece in front moves, the less valuable one
behind is exposed.

TEST 13: Playing 1.Qxe6+ Qxe6 2.Rxe6 equalizes the material count, but
with 1.Qg5+!, White forks Black?s King and Rook and picks up the
undefended Rook on d8.

TEST 14: Playing 1...Ke5 forks the Rook and Bishop with the King.
Because the pieces cannot guard each other, White will be forced to part
with one of them.

Chapter Three

TEST 15: Certainly not! White is behind in development and is several
moves away from generating any real threats. White does not have time
to launch a successful attack. An excellent reply to 1.Qf3 would be 1...d5!
2.exd5 Bxd5 3.Bxd5 Qxd5, when it becomes clear that White was never
really in a position to attack.

Answers to Quizzes and Tests


TEST 16: Such two-piece attacks rarely work. Black can push White back
with 3...d5 (blocking the checkmate and attacking the Bishop) 4.Bb3 Nf6é
(developing a piece and attacking White?s Queen). Thus, while Black
gains the center and develops his pieces, White?s forces are in retreat.

Chapter Four

TEST 17: White: 12; Black: 5.

TEST 18: By fianchettoing his Bishop with 1.g3 and 2.Bg2, White would
succeed in placing it on the open h1-a8 diagonal. This Bishop would then
be more active than Black?s Bishop.

TEST 19: Yes, 1...Be6 makes sense. When you have less space than your
opponent, it is a good policy to exchange pieces in order to give yourself
more breathing room. Playing 1...Be6 offers to trade Black?s passive
d7-Bishop for its active White counterpart on b3. If White declines with
2.Bc2, Black would gain three squares in space count, while White would
lose two.

Chapter Five

TEST 20: White uses his space advantage to create a new Queen with a
tactical trick involving pawn sacrifices. Here?s how:

1. g6! hxg6
If Black plays 1...fxg6, White plays 2.h6!! gxh6 3.f6, and the pawn on f6 will
soon become a Queen.

2. ~??fé!!
This move threatens to lead to fxg7, so Black is forced to capture the
pawn. However, now White?s remaining pawn on h5 has nothing stand-
ing between it and the queening square!



2.0 a gxf6 4. h7 f4

3. ho {5 5. h8=Q
White manages to crown a new Queen.

Notice that if the starting move were Black?s, he could stop White?s
intentions with 1...g6! (a big mistake is 1...h6?? 2.f6! gxf6 3.¢xh6, which
allows White to promote first), which leads to 2.hxg6 hxg6 or 2.fxg6 fxg6!,
leaving White no hope of getting a new Queen.

This example may seem confusing at first. Read through the moves
several times and then play them over until the logic of the example is
clear. It will give you a good understanding of a pawn?s potential.

TEST 21: White?s position is better, because Black?s passed pawn on d5
is firmly blocked and not going anywhere. Though White?s doubled
pawns on the b-file are not at all weak because of the support given by the
a3-pawn, Black?s backward pawn is stuck on an open file and subject to
attack. By continuing with 1.Qc2 and 2.Rec1, White could put tremendous
pressure on the c6-pawn. Here, piece play is more important than pawn

TEST 22: After 2.Rxe5 Bd6 or 2...Bf6, the White Rook would have to
retreat, and the Black Bishop would enjoy his superiority. Though 2.fxe5
is a good move because it gives White a protected passed pawn, even
better is 2.dxe5, which does three things:

@ White gets a protected passed pawn.

H@ White?s Bishop is unblocked and springs to life on the
gl-a7 diagonal.

B White opens up the d-file to the backward d5-pawn, which

he can now attack by massing his Rooks and Queen on
the d-file.

Answers to Quizzes and Tests


TEST 23: Though Black is ahead by a pawn, his pawns are tripled and are
thus more or less useless. White is winning, because he can calmly
advance his King and eat all his opponent?s men. An example:

1. &. Kd5 3. Kg3

2. Kg2 Ke4
Now White threatens to play 4.Kg4 and start eating.

3. vee Kf5
Also hopeless is 3...Kd3 4.Kg4 Kc3 5.b4 Ke4 6.Kxg5 Kb5 7.Kxg6 Ka4
8.Kxg7, which leaves Black with no pawns. Black can?t play 8...Kxa3
because White would respond with 9.b5 and the promotion of the remain-
ing White pawn. The main problem with Black?s position is that whereas
White?s pawns can defend themselves, Black?s men are helpless and can
be easily mowed down.

4. a4
Suddenly, this pawn threatens to become a Queen, and Black must hurry
back to stop it.

4, Ke5 7. Kg4 ? Kb5
5. ad Kd5 8. Kxg5
6. b4 Kc6
The feast begins.
8... Kxb4
9. ab

and nothing can stop the White pawn from winning its promotion.

TEST 24: Because the center is locked up with pawns (a typical closed
position), White?s pieces will have more difficulty in getting through to
Black?s territory. In closed positions, castling can be delayed for a short
while without any ill effect.



! (excellent move) 7

'! (brilliant move) 7

!? (interesting move) 7
+ (check) 11

? (poor move) 7

?! (dubious move) 7

?? (gross blunder) 7

advantage 183
in force (see material, ad-
in space (see space, advan-
in time (ee time, advan-
Alekhine, Alexander 141,
Alexandria, Nona 180-81
algebraic notation 7-11,
183, 192
advantages of 7
captures 9
castling 10
check 11
definition 8
distinguishing which
piece moved 9
en passant 11
examples 32
mastering 7-11
moves 11
names of squares 8
periodsin 11
promotion 11
reading 7-11

algebraic notation, continued Bishops, continued

symbols 7
writing 7-11
analysis 184. See also post-
Anderssen, Karl 5
annotated games xii,
annotation 184
attacks 184
discovered 53
examples 54, 82, 160,
double 49
definition 96
examples 84, 157, 166
mating 192
attitude 171

Back Rank Mate 48, 131,
backward pawns. See
pawns, backward
Belloti, Bruno 88
berserker. See playing
styles, berserker
Bird Opening 55
bad 96
in closed positions 140
excommunicated 53
fianchettoed 188
definition 96
examples 96, 125, 158,
good 96


history 17
how to move 18
and open diagonals 95-99,
158, 211
in open positions 138
of opposite color 193, 201
pair of 18, 184
as problem children 195
sphere of influence 18
strengths and weak-
nesses 18,95
two Jans 67
value 40
Blitz chess 6, 177
blockades 184
blunders 184
book 185, See also memo-
rizing moves
Botvinnik, Mikhail 125,
brilliancy 185


calculation of variations
169. See alse varia-
tions, calculating
Capablanca, José Raul
90-91, 110, 142
endgame skill 90
capturing 24
definition 13
en passant (see en passant)
Caro?Kann Defense 187
Castles. See Rooks
castling 205
algebraic notation 10


castling, continued
in closed positions 213
definition 29, 31, 89, 150,
185, 207
examples 32, 203, 208
history 14, 30
importance of 30, 56, 185
Kingside 30, 185
in open positions 136, 206
in the opening 27
Queenside 30, 185
center 185
Center Counter Defense 76
Cessole, Jacopo Da 30
chauvinism 3
Cheap Check 57
algebraic notation 11
announcing 23
Cheap 57
definition 22
devastating 55
discovered 82, 160
perpetual 194, 199
responding to 23
checkmate 186
box method 60, 64
definition 22
Smothered Mate 197
versus stalemate 26
chessboard 4
color 4
divisions 12
improvising 4
Kingside 12
Queenside 12
setting up 12
chess computer 149, 159
chessmen 5
moving 13
Staunton design 5

Chiburdanidze, Maya 3
Classical 186
clocks 6, 174
digital 6
double 6
improvising 6
mechanical 6
games (see positions,
positions (see positions,
computer chess 149
Deep Thought 182
example 159
confidence, lack of 171-72
connected passed pawns.
See pawns, connected
Costin, Victor 155
counterplay 186
counting space. See space,
count system
Crakanthorp, Lawrence 137
cramping positions. See po-
sitions, cramped
critical positions 187

Deep Thought 182
defending 106-7
in the opening
Caro?Kann Defense 187
Center Counter De-
fense 76
Dutch Defense 163
French Defense 187,
Petroff Defense 151,


defending, in the opening,
?Two Knights Defense
against a space advan-
tage 107-12
example 108
against weak pawns 125
defenses 187. See also
opening moves
Delmar, Eugene 163
devastating check, playing
for 55
development 74-80
and Paul Morphy 81
definition 74, 187
examples 76-78
lack of, examples 156, 204
lead in, examples 80, 82,
150-51, 158, 166
diagonals, open 95
digital clocks 6
attacks (see attacks, dis-
checks (see attacks, dis-
discovery. See attacks, dis-
Dlugy, Maxim 178
attacks (see attacks, double)
clocks 6
doubled pawns. See pawns,
Drake, Arthur 179
definition 187
Grandmaster 189
stalemate 26, 187
Dutch Defense 163


Elo, Arpad 187
Elo rating 187
and Capablanca 90
definition 27, 188
and King 27, 58, 98, 143,
material advantage in 58
players skilled in 141-43
with King and Queen 59
example 59
with King and Rook 62, 67
and pawns 27
and pawn structure 143-45
English Opening 157
en passant 166
algebraic notation 11
definition 28, 187
examples 28, 32, 202
history 27
en prise 188
equipment 4-7
chessboard 4
chessmen 5
inexpense of xii
etiquette 23, 32
evolution of chess 1-32
exchanging 188. See trading
example 127
Excommunicated Bishop 53


face-off between Kings

Fédération Internationale
des Echecs (FIDE)
xii, 3, 188

Female Grandmaster
(FGM) 3, 189

Female International Mas-
ter (FIM) 3
FGM 3, 189
fianchettoed Bishops. See
Bishops, fianchettoed
FIDE xii, 3, 188
files 8, 188
half-open 190
open 91, 192
Firmian, Nick de 177
Fischer, Bobby 136, 157,
flanks 188
Fool?s Mate 55
force. See also material
dynamic factor 187
principle of xii, 39-70,
forced moves 83-84, 189
forfeiting. See resigning
definition 49
examples 49, 68, 94, 101,
127, 157, 161, 210
Frazer, Persifor 154
French Defense 187, 200
and pawn chains 132


gain of time. See time, gain of

gambits 78, 80, 189
definition 78
examples 56, 79, 137
King?s 150
Queen?s 108

game phases 26

Anderssen-Kolisch 5
annotated 149-68


games, continued
Botvinnik?-Tal 169-70
Capablanca-Treybal 91
Computer-N.N. 159-63


Kaprinay?Hubner 157-59
Kraus-Costin 155-57
Morphy-?Paulsen 5
N.N.-Goetz 149-51
playing over 95, 149
Seirawan-Belloti 88
Taylor-N.N. 151-53
Teed?Delmar 163-65
Zeissl-Walthoffen 165-68

Gligoric, Svetozar 171

GM 189

Goetz, Alphonse 149

Grandmaster (GM) 189
Female (FGM) 189
classes 3
draw 189

Great Swindler (Frank

James Marshall) 43
gardez 32


half-open files 190

hanging 190

hanging pawns. See pawns,

heavy pieces 191. See also
major pieces

Hubner, Hans 157

Hypermodern 190

initiative 186, 190
innovation 190


international chess federa-
tion. See FIDE

International Master (IM)

isolated pawns. See pawns,

Janowski, David 66-67

Kaprinay 157
Karpov, Anatoly 179
Kasparov, Garry 3, 157
Kenny, W.S. xi
Keres, Paul 142
in endgame 27, 58, 98,
143, 206
in face-off 63-65
history 14
how to move 14
moving early 153
protecting 23, 56
by castling 30
sphere of influence 14
starting position 12
trapping 55
value 40
weakening 163
examples 83, 150-51
King?s Gambit 150
Kingside, definition 12, 191
in closed positions 140
history 19
how to move 19
notation name 9
in open positions 139
sphere of influence 19
strengths and weak-
nesses 99-103
value 40

Kolisch, Ignac 5
Kraus, Otto 155


lack of confidence 171-72

lack of development. See
development, lack of

Lasker, Emanuel 107, 142

Last Exit on Brooklyn cof-
fee house 135

lead in development. See
development, lead in

Legall?s Mate 52

liquidation 191

Lépez, Ruy 27, 30

losing, ways of 22

loss of tempo. See time,
loss of

Lucena, Luis Ramirez 30
luft 191

Maddox, Jonathan 137
major pieces 5, 99, 191
male chauvinism 3
maneuvers 191
Mraric, Alisa 177, 179
Marshall, Frank James 43,
Master 191
mate 191. See also check-
material 192
advantage 39, 43-45, 189
in the endgame 58-65
examples 166, 206
how to gain 43
definition 14, 189
gain of 14, 39
imbalances, example 40


material, continued
point count system
definition 40-41, 194
examples 40, 48, 100,
151, 160, 203
mating attacks 192
mechanical clocks 6
memorizing moves 103.
See also book
middlegame 192
definition 27
how to play 115
Miles, Tony 182
minor pieces 5, 99, 192
mobility 91, 192
Morphy, Paul 5, 81, 116
motives for playing chess 2
algebraic notation 11
forced 83-84, 189
memorizing 103
passive 193
quiet 195
reading 7-11
sharp 196
sound 197
speculative 197
writing 7-11
moving pieces and pawns


names of squares 8
example 9

Nimzowitsch, Aaron 130,

notation. See algebraic nota-

numerical values 40-41.
See also material, point
count system



occupying squares 192
diagonals and Bishops
(see Bishops, and
open diagonals)
files (see files, open)
files and Rooks (see
Rooks, and open
games (see positions,
positions (see positions,
opening 193
definition 27
opening moves 193
Bird Opening 55
Caro-Kann Defense 187
Center Counter Defense
Dutch Defense 163
English Opening 157

French Defense 187, 200

gambits 78, 80
definition 189
examples 56, 137

King?s Gambit 150

Petroff Defense 151, 159

Queen?s Gambit 108

Ruy Lopez Opening 165,


Scotch Opening 154

Sicilian Opening 193

Two Knights Defense

opposite-colored Bishops.
See Bishops, of oppo-
site color
origins of chess 1
overextending 193


passed pawns. See pawns,
Paulsen, Louis 5
pawn break 185
centers 194
examples 206
chains 132-34, 186
attacking 132-33, 206
definition 194
islands 119, 190
definition 194
example 89
skeleton (see pawn struc-
structure 115, 118-19
inendgame 143-45
definition 194
principle of xii, 115?48,
static factor 197
versus piece play 212
advanced 120
examples 143
backward 123
definition 184
examples 123, 128, 138,
156, 212
capturing en passant 187
connected passed 186
definition 120, 187
examples 120-21, 158,
206, 212
when to use 121
in endgame 27
exchanging 185
good 129-30
hanging, definition 190
history 20


pawns, continued

how they capture 20

how to move 20

importance of 115-16

isolated 123
definition 191
examples 123, 126

in opening 116-18

passed 129-30
definition 193
examples 129, 145, 212

poisoned 194

promoting 193
algebraic notation 11
definition 21, 195
examples 129, 208, 211,


protected passed
definition 195
examples 130, 212
sacrificing 137-38, 211
example 151
sphere of influence 21
stopping 184

and strategy 119
strong 129

tripled 122
examples 122-23, 213

definition 67
examples 67-68, 151

value 40

vulnerable 51

weak 119-24
attacking 126, 206
backward 123
curing 125-28, 128
doubled 120
isolated 123

tripled 122

worst enemy of 131


perpetual check. See
check, perpetual
Peters, Jack 176
Petroff Defense 151, 159
Petrosyan, Tigran 124, 142
Philidor, Frangois-André
Classical 186
Hypermodern 190
heavy 191
major 5, 99, 191
minor 5, 99, 192
pigs on 7th 131-32, 194

example 130
definition 45

examples 45-47, 52, 85,
98, 127, 154, 164,
203-4, 209-10

using to win material 47

playing styles 198

attacking 42

berserker 73-74, 81, 107

Capablanca, José Ratil
90, 93

Keres, Paul 142

positional 81, 107, 116,

romantic 42, 196

Steinitz, Wilhelm 107

point count system. See ma-
terial, point count
definition 194
support, definition 198
popularity of chess xii, 2
positional chess 116. See
also playing styles, po-

closed 139-41
attacking 140
Bishops versus
Knights 140
castling in 213
definition 186
examples 140, 143, 213
and Rooks 140
cramped 187, 205
example 82
critical 187
holding 190
open 136-39, 192
Bishops versus
Knights 138
castling in 206
example 136
playing 136
open versus closed 141
passive 193
sharp 196
simplifying 197
example 160
starting 12
three-time repetition of
wild 200
postal chess 142
postmortem 184, 195. See
also analysis
prepared variations 195
principles 189
advantages of applying
and you 169-72
force xii, 39-70, 169
pawn structure xii,
115-48, 169
space xii, 87-113, 169
time xii, 71-85, 169
problem children 195


promoting pawns. See
pawns, promoting;
pawns, underpromot-
protected passed pawns.
See pawns, protected
King (see King, protect-
Queen (see Queen, pro-


announcing attack on 32
history 14
how to move 15
moving early 76-77, 150,
protecting 92
sphere of influence 15
starting position 12
value 40
Queen?s Gambit 108
queening. See pawns, pro-
queening square 48, 211.
See also pawns, pro-
Queenside, definition 12,


Rachels, Stuart 178

ranks 8, 196

rating system 187, 196

reading chess moves. See
algebraic notation

recapturing material 14


examples 78, 155, 157, 159
how to 25, 196
romantic 196. See alse play-
ing styles, romantic
announcing attack on 32
and Castles 16
doubled 131
history 16
how to move 16
and open files 91-95, 100,
121, 133, 140, 158
examples 83, 89, 130
on 7th 130-32
sphere of influence 16
strengths and weak-
nesses 91
value 40
Root, Alexy Rudolph 178
Rubinstein, Akiba 142
Rudolph Root, Alexy 178
capturing 13
castling 29, 31, 89, 150,
185, 207
check and checkmate 22
en passant 28, 187
losing, ways of 22
moving pieces and
pawns 13-21
promotion (see pawns,
resigning 25
setting up board 12
stalemate 25
three-time repetition of
position 32
time limits 6
touch move 32
winning, ways of 6
Ruy Lopez Opening 165

sacrificing. See also gambits
definition 196
examples 83, 204
pawns 138. See also
pawns, sacrificing
Scholar?s Mate 52
Scotch Opening 154
Seirawan, Yasser 88,
134~36, 177-79
setting up board 12
Sicilian Defense 138
simplifying. See trading
skewers 210
Smothered Mate 57, 197
Smyslov, Vasily 142
advantage 184
and Bishops 95-99
definition 87
examples 166
how to use 91-103
and Knights 99-103
in opening 104-5
and Rooks 91-95
count system
definition 87-89, 197
examples 88, 91-92, 95,
100, 110, 112, 117,
205, 211
and Knights 99
and pawns 104
definition 197
disadvantage 93
principle of xii, 87-113,
square, queening 48, 211.
See also pawns, pro-
squares. See also space
names of 8
squeezing your opponent 87


avoiding 62
definition 25-26, 197
examples 26, 67, 202, 209
history 26
versus checkmate 26
static 197
Staunton, Howard 5
Steinitz, Wilhelm 6, 106-7,
strategy 197
stress 171
style. See playing styles
support points 198
symmetry 198

definition 198
forks. See forks
pins. See pins
Tal, Mikhail 141, 169-70
Tartakower, Saviely 115
Taubenhaus, Jean 154
Taylor, John Odin Howard
teamwork, example 84
Teed, Frank Melville 163
tempi. See time
tempo. See time
territory. See also space
Black?s 87
personal 87
White?s 87
threats 198
three-time repetition of po-
sition 199
definition 32
tied game. See draw
time. See also clocks
advantage 71-73


time, continued
definition 71
and development. See
examples 72-73
how to use 82-85
controls 199
definition 199
dynamic factor 187
gain of 77,117
examples 152, 156
limits 6, 199
loss of 75-76, 198

examples 75-76, 152,154 Two Knights Defense 200

pressure 199
principle of xii, 71-86, 169
violating 105
timers 5-7, 174
touch move, rule 32
trading 188, 205
to defend against a space
advantage 110
examples 155, 203
to gain space 211
examples 160
transition 199
transposing 200
traps 24, 48, 200
Cheap Check 57
Excommunicated Bishop

traps, continued
Fool?s Mate 55
and King 55-58
laying 50
Legall?s Mate 52
Scholar?s Mate 52
and undefended pieces
and weak pawns 51~53
Treybal, Karel 91
tripled pawns. See pawns,
two Jans 67

underpromoting pawns.
See pawns, under-
U.S. Championship 176
values. See also material,
point count system
assigning to chessmen
calculating 45, 169, 185,
definition 200
prepared 195



Walthoffen, Walter Von 165

weak pawns. See pawns,


weaknesses 200

winning 22
by squeezing your oppo-

nent 87

ways of 6

women in chess 3

World Champions
Alekhine, Alexander 171
Botvinnik, Mikhail 169-70
first 1
Karpov, Anatoly 179
Kasparov, Garry 3, 157
Petrosyan, Tigran 124
Steinitz, Wilhelm 106
Tal, Mikhail 169-70
women?s 3

writing chess moves. See al-

gebraic notation


Zeiss] 165

zugzwang 200
definition 97
examples 97, 208

zwischenzug 200
Yasser Seirawan

International Grandmaster Yasser Seirawan is considered the top U.S.
contender for the chess World Champion title. The only American con-
tender for the world title since Bobby Fischer retired in 1975, Seirawan
won the U.S. Champion title for the third time in 1989. That same year, he
also won the U.S. Blitz Champion title. In tournament play, he has
defeated both Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov, the two top-ranking
players in the world. He is the only American to have played in the World
Cup cycle. Playing against Kasparov and Karpov, he tied for third place
in the final World Cup tournament. He was a member of the ?80, ?82, ?86,
and ?88 U.S. Olympic teams.

Born in Damascus, Syria, in 1960, Seirawan moved to Seattle at the
age of seven. His chess career was launched at the age of twelve, when
he began to play in (and win) local and regional tournaments. Seirawan
currently lives in Seattle, Washington, where he is the owner and editor
of Inside Chess magazine.

Jeremy Silman

International Master Jeremy Silman tied for first place in the 1990 National
Open tournament. He also tied for first place in the 1982 U.S. Open. He is
a former Pacific Northwest Champion and a former Washington State

Silman has written extensively about chess. He is the author of 16
books, and his magazine articles have been published all over the world.
He has produced a video and a computer program. Silman now lives in
Beverly Hills, California.
The manuscript for this book was prepared and submitted to Microsoft Press

in electronic form. Text files were processed and formatted using Microsoft

Principal word processor: Joan Anderson
Principal proofreader: Polly Fox Urban
Principal typographer: Kjell Swedin
Linotronic technician: Carol L. Luke
Interior text designer: Darcie S. Furlan
Cover color separator: Rainier Color

The chessboard graphics were created with the Arts & Letters Editor from
Computer Support Corporation, Dallas, Texas.

Text composition by Online Press Inc. in Century Old Style with display type
in Optima Bold, using Ventura Publisher and the Linotronic 300 laser im-

Printed on recycled paper stock.
Games and Recreation/Chess



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