A game for two players who move their 16 pieces according to specific rules; the object is to checkmate the opponent's king; SYN. chess game.
Board game originating as early as the 2nd century AD. Two players use 16 pieces each, on a board of 64 squares of alternating color, to try to force the opponent into a position where the main piece (the king) is threatened and cannot move to another position without remaining threatened.
The Fédération Internationale des Echecs (FIDE) was established 1924. Leading players are rated according to the Elo System, and Bobby Fischer (US) is considered to be one of the greatest Grand Masters of all time with a rating of 2,785.
Chess originated in India, and spread to Russia, China, Japan, and Iran, and from there was introduced to the Mediterranean area by Arab invaders. It reached Britain in the 12th century via Spain and Italy. The first official world championships were recognized in 1886.