Chaturanga Chess Set - the parent of them all (chess variant/board game)

Chaturanga Chess Set - the parent of them all (chess variant/board game)

Chaturanga Chess Set - the parent of them all

Continuity

Chaturanga is an Indian game played on an 8x8 board. The 8x8 board is called an ashtapada, and is very likely the grandparent of the modern chess board. Where the game fits in our ancestry is less clear, but you can see some family resemblences: there are pawns/soldiers, a king, a horse and an elephant.

pKnB

The elephant piece is found in lots of versions of chess -- in the Arab game shatranj it's called al-fil, it's the xiang in the Chinese chess game xiang-chi, and it's the name for the piece I call a Bishop in Russian. How do you get from an elephant to a Bishop? Well, you make a piece out of a lump of stone or wood, and add to it a pair of curving tusks. [http://www.gothicgreenoak.co.uk/chess.html] And over time, someone decides it looks like a Bishop's hat, a mitre. The French just took the sound of the word fil and got fou (fool).
bB

The fourth piece shown here as a ship is sometimes shown as a chariot . Chariots are also seen in the Chinese form of chess. The name of the ship is retained in the Russian chess piece, ladya. A chariot is a box on wheels attached to a horse; in Chinese chess, they draw a wheel, but we get the shape of our piece from the little box or tower that sat on the wheels, so you get a piece called a Tower all over Europe (see http://www.eudesign.com/chessops/basics/cpr-lang.htm). Of course, the Brits, being British, designed a tower, then called it a chariot! ...for the name Rook comes from rukh (chariot) in Arabic.
rR

If the history of chess interests you, try here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_chess
If the language of chess interests you, try here: http://www.shakki.net/kerhot/KemTS/nap-pieces.htm

Chess Quotes

"A discussion between the top management of the firm Audi and grandmasters Darga, Schmid and Pfleger dealt with the similarities and differences between chess-oriented thinking and the thinking processes required in business, and in particular whether one can benefit from the other. The question arose as to how a chess master actually discovers his moves. Dr. Pfleger was of the opinion that in the last analysis nobody fully knows the reasoning by which he arrives at a certain move.
— PFLEGER and TREPPNER, Chess: the mechanics of the mind