The history of the emergence of chess is a rather complicated issue, which still remains a mystery to scientists. This topic is open to thought and research. Let’s try to figure it out a bit.
Chess (from Persian – checkmate – the ruler died) is a game that originated in India. The time of the appearance of chess is unknown, and scholars often argue about this. Nevertheless, there is a generalized opinion that chess arose in the first century AD in North India. Let us plunge into the world of northern India in the first century CE: bloody wars did not please the kings at all, chess was the prototype of battles without prejudice to both rulers and troops, and for the population as a whole. That is why they caused such a sensation among the kings of that time, because you could fight without doing any harm.
So where did this mysterious game come from.
… “There is one ancient legend about a wise peasant who once came to the King and told him about a new, previously unknown game. She liked the King, and the peasant promised to tell more about her if the king fulfills one condition. The king agreed. The conditions were as follows: put grain on each square of the chessboard, so that each time the number of grains increased in a square. That is, on the first cell – 1 grain, on the second cell – 2 grains, on the third cell – 4 grains, and so on. The king laughed, and said that he would easily fulfill this condition. He ordered the opening of the royal barn, the court calculated and found out that such a quantity of grain is not on the whole planet. The king could not complete the task, but the peasant still told him about this game and the King gave him all the grain from the barn as a reward. “… ..
The history of chess. Chess from East to West.
Chess is considered one of the most ancient games that have come to us from the depths of centuries. The history of chess originates more than one and a half thousand years ago (V-VI centuries AD) in the north-west of India. Chess was then called “chaturanga” and was a gambling war game: the board and pieces in the game represented the composition and military operations of the Indian army on the battlefield, and the goal of the game was to destroy the entire enemy army.
The rules of the game of chaturanga and its difference from modern chess:
4 people played chaturanga: two on each side. The move was made by means of throwing dice. The pieces on a board of 64 cells were located in the corners. There were no alphanumeric coordinates. Each player had 4 pawns and 4 pieces (chariot or rook, Horse, bishop, king) of their color: yellow, red, green and black. There was no queen. The moves of the chariot, horse, king and pawn were the same as in modern chess. And the elephant moved diagonally to the third field through other figures (like a horse).
“Indian Chess” or gambling chaturanga spread its popularity further to the Arab East (end of the 6th – 7th centuries AD, the territories of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Persia or present Iran, Iraq, Egypt, the entire Arabian Peninsula, and the entire northern coast of Africa) and later to Southeast Asia (China, Tajikistan, Thai or Thai lands – Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar and Cambodia).
The Arabs transformed gambling chaturanga into an intellectual two-way game called “shantrange” (“shatrang” from Persian). The aim of the game was not the destruction of the enemy troops, but the setting of a mat or stalemate.
The rules of the game of shatrange:
In contrast to chaturanga, two players were already playing shatrange. They refused the bones. The move became alternate. The Queen appeared and moved, unlike modern chess, diagonally. Castling was absent. The game began with the construction of tabs (“battlefield” pers. – arrangement of figures and pawns), because the enemy forces did not come into contact at once in the tent, and the opponents placed pieces and pawns on their half of the board in the desired way.
At the same time, the game of shatrange was popularized in Southeast Asia, later modified and rooted. The moves of many pieces were made over short distances. The figures changed externally. As well as in the “Arabian” shatranj there were no castling and capture on the aisle. Figures are placed on points, not on fields. The size of the board increased from 64 cells to 90 (9 vertical and 10 horizontal lines). The horse and the elephant walk in the plane of the board when they “jump” in the tent. A new figure was added – the cannon. She hits the figure, jumping over upon impact, over another figure.
Chess Penetration West
Chess or shatrange came to Europe from three sides at once: by means of the Arabs conquering Spain, to Sicily, and also thanks to the Constantinople trade relations with the Persians or Sassanids (Iran, Iraq). Vikings have already spread chess to the British Isles and Scandinavia.
The game was popularized and spread in Europe during the Crusades, falling into Europe with a huge stream of trophies from Palestine and Turkey. Chess, despite its ever-growing popularity, was recognized by the Christian Church in Europe and Russia as a game of chance, and was persecuted.