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HOW ARE CHESS PIECES NAMED?

The different pieces in a chess game

The intriguing game of Chess will keep you company for hours at a stretch. This game is one of the most popular board games in the world. But did you ever think, why the Pawns are called that, and nothing else? Where did these names of chess pieces come from?

We surely thought so! And hence, we did our research. So that you didn’t had to go any further, to find out the same!

THE KING

Being a game that has its roots traced back over 50 centuries. Chess is based in the times when kingdoms were ruled over by kings. In Medieval times, the King was the most important part of the kingdom. Thus, making the King the most important part of the chessboard. If the King was captured, the kingdom was considered to have fallen. That is exactly what happens in the game of chess. You lose the King, you lose the game!

The king and the Queen

THE QUEEN

The Queen is the most powerful piece in the game of chess. She is permitted to move as many squares as she wishes, in any direction she wants. Throughout history, Queens have been shown as free-spirited and following their whims. That is one of the reasons for the analogy. 

Another semblance that the chess Queen has to those in real life is that over many critical incidents in the past, the times have come when the Queen becomes a ruthless warrior, which is what the chess moves a Queen makes represent.

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THE BISHOP

The Bishop is the chess piece that is right next to the Queen and the King. The Bishop is symbolic of the church, which acts as the moral compass for the Queen and the King. And also aids them in the making of decisions that affect the kingdom. This is also one of the reasons why the Bishop stands right next to the King and the Queen.

Back in the day, religion was the compass that held the power to affect and influence hundreds of people. This particular quality of the Bishop is enshrined in the way that a Bishop is permitted to move on a chessboard. And to hold a license to move diagonally any number of squares which is both forward and backward.

The bishop protecting the king and the queen

THE KNIGHT

In a game of chess, Knights have the liberty to leap over the other pieces in their way. This is done in order to march forward towards the battle. Historically, knights were the protectors of the castles. 

It is said that the Knight in a chessboard is shaped like a horse. That is an ode to the historic knights’ transportation of choice during battle. The ‘L’ shaped movements allow the Knights in a game of chess to the swift and graceful prancing of horses.

The Knight and the Rook in their position at the chess board

THE CASTLE/ROOK/TOWER

As the name suggests, the Castle is the barrier to entry into the royal court. These are the pieces in a chessboard that are placed on the corner of the board. And protect the higher-ranked pieces within the army. The reason why The Castles are placed on the corner or the side of the chessboard is also in a way to symbolize the Castle protecting the royal members within. 

The pawns protecting the kingdom

THE PAWN

The Pawns represent the common people or the peasants. These were considered the first lines of defense protecting the royal court. And its members as well as the castle behind them. That is exactly the case in a chessboard where the 8 Pawns stand in front of the other pieces.

We hope, you had fun reading about the history connected with the pieces. And were as enlightened as we were.