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Part of a Staunton chess set
Left to right: white king, black rook, black queen, white pawn, black knight, white bishop

Chess is a board game between two players. It is sometimes called Western chess or international chess to distinguish it from related games, such as xiangqi (Chinese chess) and shogi (Japanese chess). The current form of the game emerged in Spain and the rest of Southern Europe during the second half of the 15th century after evolving from chaturanga, a similar but much older game of Indian origin. Today, chess is one of the world's most popular games, played by millions of people worldwide.

Chess is an abstract strategy game and involves no hidden information. It is played on a chessboard with 64 squares arranged in an eight-by-eight grid. At the start, each player controls sixteen pieces: one king, one queen, two rooks, two bishops, two knights, and eight pawns. The player who moves first controls white pieces, and the other controls black pieces. The object of the game is to checkmate the opponent's king, whereby the king is under immediate attack (in "check") and there is no way for it to escape. There are also several ways a game can end in a draw.

Organized chess arose in the 19th century. Chess competition today is governed internationally by FIDE (International Chess Federation). The first universally recognized World Chess Champion, Wilhelm Steinitz, claimed his title in 1886; Magnus Carlsen is the current World Champion. A huge body of chess theory has developed since the game's inception. Aspects of art are found in chess composition, and chess in its turn influenced Western culture and art, and has connections with other fields such as mathematics, computer science, and psychology. (Full article...)

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Veselin Topalov, Warsaw 2013

Veselin Aleksandrov Topalov (pronounced [vɛsɛˈlin toˈpalof]; Bulgarian: Весели́н Александров Топа́лов; born 15 March 1975) is a Bulgarian chess grandmaster and former FIDE World Chess Champion.

Topalov became FIDE World Chess Champion by winning the FIDE World Chess Championship 2005. He lost his title in the World Chess Championship 2006 against Vladimir Kramnik. He challenged Viswanathan Anand at the World Chess Championship 2010, losing 6½–5½. He won the 2005 Chess Oscar. (Full article...)
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FIDE world ranking

Rank Rank change* Player Rating Rating change*
1 Steady Norway Magnus Carlsen 2864 Steady
2 Steady China Ding Liren 2808 Increase 2
3 Increase 4 Russia Ian Nepomniachtchi 2792 Increase 26
4 Decrease 1 France Alireza Firouzja 2778 Decrease 15
5 Decrease 1 United States Fabiano Caruana 2776 Decrease 7
6 Decrease 1 United States Levon Aronian 2775 Steady
7 Decrease 1 United States Wesley So 2773 Steady
8 Increase 3 United States Hikaru Nakamura 2768 Increase 8
9 Increase 1 Netherlands Anish Giri 2760 Steady
10 Increase 2 Azerbaijan Shakhriyar Mamedyarov 2758 Decrease 1
11 Decrease 2 France Maxime Vachier-Lagrave 2757 Decrease 3
12 Increase 1 India Viswanathan Anand 2756 Steady
13 Decrease 5 Hungary Richárd Rapport 2754 Decrease 10
14 Steady United States Leinier Domínguez 2754 Steady
15 Increase 3 Azerbaijan Teimour Radjabov 2747 Increase 9
16 Steady Russia Sergey Karjakin 2747 Steady
17 Steady Russia Alexander Grischuk 2745 Steady
18 Decrease 3 Poland Jan-Krzysztof Duda 2740 Decrease 10
19 Steady China Wang Hao 2735 Steady
20 Steady Russia Dmitry Andreikin 2729 Steady
*Change from the previous month

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Chess from A to Z

Index: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z (0–9)
Glossary: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z



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