Chess, Laws of.

The rules given below are those which are now universally accepted by English players.

  1. The board is to be so placed as to leave a white square at the right hand of the player.
  1. Any mistake in placing the board or the men may be rectified before the fourth move is completed, but not after.
  1. The players draw lots for the first move, and take the move alternately.
[When odds are given, the player giving them moves first. White generally moves first; therefore, if black win the move, the board is turned. It is usual to play with the white and black men alternately.]
  1. The piece touched must be moved. When the fingers of the player have once left the man, it cannot be again removed from the square it occupies.
[Except the move be illegal, when the opponent can insist on the piece being moved in the proper manner, or for the opposing King to be moved.]
  1. In touching a piece simply to adjust it, the player must notify to his adversary that such is his intention.
[It is usual, in such a case, to say J'adoube  (I adjust); but he may not touch a piece with the intention of moving it, and then, when he discover his mistake, say, J'adoube. The phrase is simply intended to be used when a piece is displaced or overturned by accident.]
  1. If a player take one of his own men by mistake, or touch a wrong man, or one of his opponent's men, or make an illegal move, his adversary may compel him to take the man, make the right move, move his King, or replace the piece, and make a legal move.
  1. A pawn may be played either one or two squares at a time when first moved.
[In the latter case it is liable to be taken en passant, with a pawn that could have taken it had it been played only one square.]
  1. A player cannot castle under any of the following circumstances:
    1. If he has moved either King or Rook.
    2. If the King be in check.
    3. If there be any piece between the King and the Rook.
    4. If the King, in moving, pass over any square commanded by any one of his adversary's forces.
[You cannot castle to get out of check.]
  1. If a player give a check without crying "check," the adversary need not take notice of the check. But if two moves only are made before the discovery of the mistake, the pieces may be replaced, and the game properly played.
  1. If a player say check without actually attacking the King, and his adversary move his King or take the piece, the latter may elect either to let the move stand or have the pieces replaced and another move made.
  1. If, at the end of a game, the players remain, one with a superior to an inferior force, or even if they have equal forces, the defending player may call upon his adversary to mate in fifty moves on each side, or draw the game.
[If one player persist in giving perpetual check, or repeating the same move, his opponent may count the moves for the draw; in which case touching a piece if reckoned a move.]
  1. Stalemate, or perpetual check is a drawn game.
  1. Directly a pawn reaches its eighth square it must be exchanged for a piece.
[It is usual to change the pawn for a Queen, but it may be replaced by a Rook, Bishop, or Knight, without reference to the pieces already on the board. In practice it would be changed for a Queen or a Knight, seeing that the Queen's moves include those of the Rook and Bishop. Thus you may have two or more Queens, three or more Rooks, Bishops, or Knights on the board at the end of the game.]
  1. Should any dispute arise, the question must be submitted to a bystander, whose decision is to be considered final.

For information as to the best modes of play, the Openings and Endings of Games, &c, read The Book of Chess , by G.H. Selkirk, published by Messrs. Houlston and Sons.