Chess Basics: How the pawn moves and captures

Chess is a board game played between two players sitting across a square board containing 64 squares.  Each player is provided with 16 pieces each in alternative colors – preferably in black and white.  The pieces include 1 king, 1 queen, 2 rooks, 2 bishops, 2 knights and 8 pawns.  The idea of the game is to capture the opponent’s King and say checkmate.

Some of the ignorant people consider the game of chess to be a boring one. It is one of the myths to consider it as a boring game. 

Let us try to understand, in this post, how the pawn moves about in the board and captures the opponent’s pieces.

Pawns are the smallest of the pieces in the chessboard. The White pawns start the game on the second rank and move forward, while the Black pawns start the game on the seventh rank and move in the opposite direction, towards the White pawns.

Pawns of the same color all look alike. If we want to identify one of them in particular, we use the name of the piece that it stood in front of in the starting position: the Queen’s Rook pawn and the King’s Rook pawn, the Queen’s Knight pawn and the King’s Knight pawn, the Queen’s Bishop pawn and the King’s Bishop pawn, the Queen’s pawn and the King’s pawn.

The pawn is the only piece that cannot move backwards. Nor can it jump over other men. The pawn moves only forward, one square at a time along the file on which it stands. Every pawn, no matter how far the game has progressed, has a choice on its first move (and only on its first move) of moving forward either one or two squares.

The pawn, although it moves straight ahead, captures in a different way.  Namely, it captures one square diagonally forward.  It cannot capture backwards.  For example, let us consider that the pawn in front of the White King in the second rank moves forward to the seventh rank and stands in front of the opponent King. The pawn cannot capture that King. It can only capture either the Queen standing adjacent to the King on the right side or the Bishop standing on the left side of the King, but not the King standing in front of it.  In other words, the pawn is capable of attacking two squares diagonally ahead of it on either sides.  However, the pawn in front of the rook at the flanks can attack only one square to its right side.


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