Lesson 4 - Other Chess Rules: Who Starts The Game and the Touch-Move Rule

"The laws of chess do not permit a free choice: you have to move whether you like it or not."
- Emanuel Lasker

Here are other rules that must be followed when playing a game of chess:

  1. White is always starting the game by making the first move.
  2. The Touch-Move rule: if a player touched a piece on his turn to play he is required to move this piece if it is one of his own or capture it if it is an ennemy piece. He will be allowed to play another piece only if the touched piece has no legal move to do. A player can touch the pieces on the board only to replace them properly on their square if they are misplaced. The player has to signify his intention to his opponent before replacing the pieces by using the French expression "J'adoube".

Ok... that's enough for now! We will cover the remaining of the rules in the next lesson on advanced rules. For now, you can introduced yourself in the fantastic chess world by practicing on a real chessboard. You do not master all the tricks and rules yet, but you know enough to start playing with friends and have fun. If you want an advice, try to play around twenty games before working on lesson 5. If you do not have playing partners you can start by playing online at Yahoo, they have a section for beginners. You have to register (free) before playing if you do not already have a Yahoo account. For those of you that are skilled on the web, you can find other online chess sites: there are a lot of them.

To terminate nicely this first block of lessons, I would like to present you a famous game played in 1750. The game is not too long and it will allow you to get familiar with the features of the chessboard below. When games are being presented, the convention is to put a heading containing the details of the game: the title of the game (when the game is famous), the name of the players (starting with White), the location and the date if available.

Click here to get help on the interactive chessboard features.  For now, forget the text box labelled "Move" which contains the algebraic notation of the moves.  We will see the algebraic notation in lesson 6...


Let's continue the lesson with the next page on chess problemsonline chess tutorial.