The En Passant Pawn Capture
Every pawn, on its first move, has the choice of moving either one or two squares forward.
Look at this diagram.
Black may think, "If I move my pawn one square White will capture it so I'll move it two squares." and the position would be as shown in the diagram below:
However, White can still take the Black pawn as if it had moved only one square.
The new position would be as shown in the diagram below. White removes the black pawn from the board and places the White pawn on the square the Black pawn would have moved to if it had only moved one square forward.
This special way of capturing is called capturing en passant and is abbreviated e.p. En passant is a French expression which means "in passing" The en passant capture must be done immediately after the black pawn advances two squares. If White plays another move she cannot then decide to capture en passant!
How Games are Drawn
There are six ways to draw a game of chess:1. Perpetual Check - If an opponent checks the enemy King repeatedly we call this perpetual check. Perpetual check is usually used by the weaker side to avoid losing the game. In the diagram below White is ahead on material and is threatening checkmate by moving the Queen to g7.
Black has a saving series of moves which give perpetual check:
1. Kh1 Qf1+
2. Kh2 Qf2+
3. Kh1 Qf1+
4. Kh2 Qf2+
2. Stalemate - If the King is not in check but it is unable to move to a safe square we say that the King is stalemated and the game is drawn. Many beginners who are ahead on material mistakenly stalemate the enemy king. Beware! In the diagram below the White King is not in check but it has no safe squares to go to so the game is a draw.
3. Insufficient mating material - When neither side has enough pieces on the board to checkmate the enemy king then the game is drawn. It is impossible to checkmate with:
- Just the two Kings on the board.
- King and Bishop against a King
- King and Knight against a King
- King and two Knights against a King
5. Fifty move rule - If both sides have made 50 consecutive moves without making a capture or pawn move then a player may claim a draw.
6. Draw by agreement - Both players may feel that the position on the board is equal and consequently agree to a draw. Many Grandmaster games end in a draw in this way.