Friday, August 31, 2018

How Long Has Chess Been Around.

Checkmate Chess Resignation Conflict Board  I remember trying to learn chess when I was a teenager.  My brother developed an interest in learning chess and needed someone to practice with.  I got volunteered so I learned chess but I was never particularly good at it because I didn't develop the ability to see multiple moves ahead.  That could be my brother didn't tell me I needed to plan moves ahead so I consistently lost. 

Once I headed off to college, I never played it again.  I might get one of those chess apps so I can learn it on my own under my own terms.  My curiosity came to the forefront the other night when I saw an episode of Murdoch which involved a case with chess players.  Crabtree went undercover at a chess tournament with a girl relaying moves in his earphone. 

It is said that chess can be traced back about 1500 years to Northern India where it spread out across Asia and the rest of the world.  As the game spread, the rules changed until the 1880's which is known as the Romantic age of chess.  But its origin is shrouded in time and no one knows exactly who invented it.

One story is that a wise man in a kingdom created the game to show the king why each person was important.  The game had kings, queens, rooks, bishop, knights, and pawns to show everyone had a role to play.  The king loved it so much, he ordered everyone in the kingdom to learn.  The wise man refused  all gold or silver and requested only one grain of wheat on the first square, two grains on the second, four grains on the third etc until the end which is a variation of the penny doubled everyday for a month problem.

Another legend says the game originated in China back around 200 BC.  It is said that Commander, Hán Xin invented the game to represent a certain battle but soon after, the game was forgotten and disappeared but reappeared in the 7th century with new rules.  It really didn't represent the chess of today but the game survived even when it was prohibited or sanctioned by the Catholic church.

Due to the complexity of the game, it is believed that many people helped create the game.  Be that as it may, the first chess champion won the title in 1886.  Until Wilhelm Steinitz became the champion the rules changed, were rewritten, and did not represent the game we play today.  The method of play was more of a romantic play relying on tactics and dynamic play but in the 20th century, technique changed to be more strategic due to huge data basis, chess engines, and online classes and computer partners.

Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear.  Have a great day and wonderful weekend.

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