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Teach Yourself VISUALLY Chess

Teach Yourself VISUALLY Chess

Jon Edwards

ISBN: 978-0-470-12132-0

Feb 2007

306 pages

Select type: E-Book


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Chess is a mental game, but you don't have to strain your brain to learn the basics—not with this guide that shows you how to play. Teach Yourself VISUALLY Chess covers how to set up the board, how each piece moves, opening strategies and variations, attacking themes and common sacrifices, and more. Photos of the board let you see strategies in action. For hands-on practice, you can even set up your board and make your moves as you learn. With this book and practice, you'll be saying ""Checkmate"" in no time.
  • Concise two-page lessons show you all the steps to a skill and are ideal for quick review
  • Each move or tactic is clearly explained
  • Explanations accompany each photo
  • Color photos and diagrams show key positions, strategies, and moves
  • Helpful tips provide additional guidance
Chapter 1. An Introduction to Chess.

Getting Started.

Viewing the Chessboard.

Introducing the Pieces.

Setting Up the Board.

How the King Moves and Captures.

How Rooks Move and Capture.

How Bishops Move and Capture.

How the Queen Moves and Captures.

How Knights Move and Capture.

How Pawns Move and Capture.

Chess Notation.

Protect Your Pieces.

Chapter 2. Special Moves.

Checks and Checkmate.

Stalemates and Other Draws.

Discovered Checks and Double Checks.

Promoting (and Under-Promoting) Your Pawns.


The En Passant Capture.

Chapter 3. Rook Strategy.

Rooks Belong on Open Files.

Advance Your Rooks to the 7th Rank.

Simple Back-Rank Checkmates.

Fun with Active Rooks.

Rooks Belong Behind Passed Pawns.

Chapter 4. Knight Strategy.

Move the Knights to the Center of the Board.

Place Your Knights Where the Enemy Pawns Can’t Attack Them.

Knight Forks Are Fun! 

Chapter 5. Bishop Strategy.

Bad Bishops and Good Bishops.

Bishops Can Dominate Knights.


Bishops of Opposite Color.

Skewers and Pins.

Bad Bishops Against Good Knights.

Bishops Can Dominate Rooks.

Chapter 6. Pawn Strategy.

Don’t Double Your Pawns.

Pawn Islands.

Some Doubled Pawns Are Strong.

Pawn Chains.

Pawn Majorities.

Isolated Pawns.

Backward Pawns.

Hanging Pawns.

Pawn Masses.

Pawns Can Fork, Too!

Passed Pawn Blockaders.

Every Pawn Move Creates a Weakness.

Chapter 7. King and Queen Strategy.

Don’t Develop Your Queen Early.

Beat Back Early Queen Aggression.

Safeguard Your Queen.

Don’t Risk Your King!

Castling Long or Short.

Don’t Push Your Pawns in Front of a Castled King.

Chapter 8. Opening Strategy.

Fight for the Center of the Board.

An Ideal Setup.

Knights Before Bishops.

Limit Your Early Pawn Moves.

Complete Your Development Before You Attack.

Gain Time.

Limit Exchanges.

Avoid Exchanging Bishops for Knights.

Chapter 9. Opening Variations.

Double King Pawn Openings.

Other Replies to 1.e2-e4.

Double Queen Pawn Openings.

Indian Defenses.

Two Bad Openings.

Chapter 10. Common Opening Formations.

King’s Indian Attack.

Colle System.




French Winawer.



Chapter 11. Middlegame Strategy.

Five Steps to Victory.

Candidate Moves and Planning.

Responding to Threats.


Chapter 12. Elementary Checkmates.

Two Queens.

Queen and Rook.

Two Rooks.

King and Queen.

King and Rook.

King and Two Bishops.

King, Bishop, and Knight.

Chapter 13. Attacking the King.

Smothered Mate.

Back Rank Mate.

Gueridon Mate.

Greco’s Mate.

Epaulette Mate.

Anastasia’s Mate.

Boden’s Mate.

Blackburne’s Mate.

Lolli’s Mate.

Pillsbury’s Mate.

Domiano’s Mate.

Legal’s Mate.

AChapter 14. ttacking Themes and Common Sacrifices.

The Dragon Variation.

The English Attack.

Common Knight Sacrifices.

Bishop Sacrifices.

Exchange Sacrifices.

Chapter 15. An Introduction to Endgames.

King and Pawn.

Rook and Pawn.

Bishop and Pawn.

Knight and Pawn.

Queen and Pawn.