History of Chess

The wheat grain legend

The legend of wheat grain comes from ancient Arabic sources. Afterwards, the wise Brahame Sissa invented the game of chess for his Indian King Sheram. The game was to show that in his kingdom the king and his people (peasants and figures) form a unity. The king was pleased to accept the game and offered the vizier to choose his reward. The wish of the Brahman seemed modest: on the first field of the chess board a grain of wheat, on the second two, on the third four, on the fourth eight, etc. So on each field always twice the number of grains of the previous field. The king was almost indignant at the seemingly modest reward, but he let the sage do so. When the officials and counselors of the farm had calculated after many hours the sum of wheat grains on all 64 fields, she had to realize with alarm that so much wheat was not to be found. The sum of wheat grains was: 18,446,744,073,709,551,615 (18 trillion, 446 quadrillion, 744 trillion, 73 billion, 709 million, 551 thousand, 615). A freight train with all grains, with 80 km / h, d. H. With two wagons per second past us, each loaded with 20 tons of wheat, it would take 730 years!

Origin of the game

The chess game emerges towards the end of the sixth century as Tschaturanga in Sanskrit literature. It was only relatively recently confirmed during excavations in Afrasiab that both parties had chariots, elephants, riders and foot soldiers at their disposal when seven chess pieces were brought to light there. The game was preparing for Asia before it probably reached Persia in the Arabic-Isamlian area in the late eighth century. On the sixty-four fields, as Shatrandsch and Shantranj, stood the figures still known today: “shah” (pronounced: shaa or chess) (king), “fers” (queen), “rukh” (turret), “fil” (Runner) and “faras” jumper. However, they moved differently and the Matt (Arabic: mat – dead) was not considered a single success. The importance of the game for the mathematically interested Arabs can be measured by the fact that players were classified according to (game) classes. Al-Adli was the only “player of the highest class” in 842 AD, as the English Orientalist, chess historian and mathematics teacher Harold James Murray proved. Already 200 years later the chess game was known in Germany. In a romance of chivalry the ambassador of a victorious king brings the claims of his master to the inferior king. As the king pauses for a night of deliberation, the ambassador spends his time playing chess with the courtiers, and later with the king, and no one is able to beat him. This story should be based on a real story. The envoy would then have learned the game of chess from the Moors (Arabs in Spain). The rules of the game did not correspond to today’s, but already had a certain similarity. Likewise at that time were varieties such as matte combinations, Hilfsmattstellungen u.รค. known.

The Game of the Queen and the King is one of the oldest board games we know. It is believed to have originated in China or Persia, sometime between the 3rd and 6th centuries. There were some versions, from which then today’s chess emerged. It is certain that there were chess games around 600 in Persia and spread from there in the 7th century in the Arab world. Soon it also reached Spain via Europe, where it enjoyed great popularity. This went so far that in the 11th century a knight had to play as good a chess as being a soldier.

However, the rules have changed again and again in the first few centuries, and chess as we know it today has been set in this form sometime in the 15th century. Interestingly, there was an alternate leadership of nations in chess. While Italy and Spain were strong at the beginning, they were soon replaced by France and later by Germany and Ungar, while in the 20th century, Russia was the country with the best chess players.

since the 19th century, chess is also played as a tournament. Players like Garry Kasparov have been making chess grandmaster football around the world since the 1970s. One of the outstanding but also dazzling figures was Bobby Fischer, whose games against Russian chess grandmasters were also politically exploited – in times of the Cold War.

The IBM computer Deep Blue, who was the first computer to win a chess game, caused a sensation. However, this did not mean the end of the game, but brought forth a variety of chess computers that made the game even more popular.

For a long time popular was correspondence chess, in which the players sent their next move by letter. Of course that took time.

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