Some will say that there is no game on earth so popular as chess. Others will emphasize the ambitions which such a game can awaken in the hearts of immature or imprudent players. In any case, created in India thousands of years ago, the game named Chaturanga is the ancestor of chess. This amazing game unveils under the eyes of both players and kibitzers the fight between two armies in which each tries to capture the king of the other.

The rules of chess can be learn by a five-years-old child in one hour. But to learn the strategy and the tactics of the game twenty years does not seem to be enough. Simultaneously, any serious player have the opportunity to learn something even more important: how to behave as a gentleman or as lady. Nothing is so important than to learn how to lose elegantly. If a player learn this lesson and pass the final test, his egocentric tendencies will be tempered.

For those who would like to understand the significance of such a game, I will mention the interpretation proposed by Saint Therese of Avila (1515 – 1582). In the 16th chapter of his treatise The Way of Perfection she makes an extraordinary statement by using the game of chess as a metaphor:

And oh, how permissible this kind of game will be for us; and how quickly, if we play it often, will we checkmate this divine King, who will not be able to escape, nor will He want to.Saint Therese of Avila,

Recommended for any age, chess rules can be learned by studying a book or by accessing a good quality website such as that which belongs the The United States Chess Federation: Learn to Play Chess. But the most important thing is to play the game. Nowadays, this is possible not only at home or in a chess club, but also on the internet. Personally, I use to play on the Lichess website. For advanced players or for those who want to improve their skills, Internet Chess Club is one of the best options.


  • Ancestor games: Chaturanga and Shatranj
  • Place of creation: India/Persia
  • Date of creation: ~ 6th century AD
  • Type of game: Strategy board game
  • Players: 2
  • Age: 5+
Chess set