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# Notation For Beginners

• #1

Well i'm sure over 99% of you here know what and how notation works.

Heres a key (its easy, each letter for its capital/first letter of the word)

B= Bishop

N = Knight (yes, not K because K is king. You'll remember this easily though)

R = Rook

Q = Queen

K = King

the file row letter = Pawn

The pawn is a bit more complicated. If the pawn moves on the same row, you don't have to say its name, or, you don't need to say its row. So the pawn on the e file moves to e4, you only say e4, not ee4. But if it moves to another row (via capturing), then you do. So its exd5 for a e file pawn to capture a pawn on d5. I'll go on to capturing later.

On a board, you have your letters and numbers going down each side right?

Example: e4 e5 Nf3 Nc6

Castling

This is pretty easy, 0-0 is for king side castling and 0-0-0 is for queen side castling. You can remember it by the spaces between the king and rook using the "0"s as spaces, but its pretty simple to remember really.

Capturing another piece

When you capture another piece, you put your piece letter (eg B) followed by a "x" to represent capturing, then the square you move to. You don't put the piece you capture. So Nxe4 would mean you take SOMETHING on e4.

Checking

When you check the king, all you do is add a "+" sign to then end of your "move" (the piece and the square it moves it, and if so, the capture sign). So Qxf7+ would mean you took on f7 and you checked the king.

Checkmate

The thing you all want in chess =D (hopefully...) same as checking the king (checking, hahaha yes im immature), you'll be adding a simple sign to the end of your "move". This is it: "#", or sometimes less used, "++", which is two check signs together.

Same piece moving to the Same square

• If two of the same type of pieces can move to the same square then you must specify which piece will move to that square. You do this by adding the file and/or rank to the piece notation that uniquely identifies it from the other.

Example: in the position below if you wanted to move your Knight on g3 to f5 your notation would be Ngf5, if the other Knight then Ndf5, where the g and d represent the file the Knight is on that you wish to move and uniquely identifies them from each other.

If both Knights were on the same file then you would notate them using the rank number.  Example: In the following diagram to move the Knight from g6 to f4 you would notate as N6f4, where the 6 represents the rank the Knight is on that you wish to move and uniquely identifies it from the other Knight.

In the rare scenario where you have three Knights that can go to the same square and you have to identify exactly which one you can use both the file and the rank.  Example: In the diagram below three Knights can move to d4. If we want to move the Knight on b3 to d4 then we specify as Nb3d4, where b3 uniquely identifies this Knight from the other two.

Thats about it, it's not as complicated as it looks. Have fun!

• #2

You forgot + for check (++ for double check) and # for mate.

• #3

oh yeh oops, i made this in like 5 minutes.

• #4

bump

• #5

This is really handy for those who might not know the notations. Perhaps chess.com should add this to their list of chess rules/guides etc or you could put it in one of the articles yourself? It's nice to see people take the time to help beginners with things that can be a little bit daunting to begin with. I didn't learn proper notation until the night I was going to go and play my very first game, I had a quick read on wikipedia beforehand - this topic would have helped!

You have missed a few things though (I'll add for you):

• If two of the same type of pieces can move to the same square then you must specify which piece will move to that square. You do this by adding the file and/or rank to the piece notation that uniquely identifies it from the other.

Example: in the position below if you wanted to move your Knight on g3 to f5 your notation would be Ngf5, if the other Knight then Ndf5, where the g and d represent the file the Knight is on that you wish to move and uniquely identifies them from each other.

If both Knights were on the same file then you would notate them using the rank number.  Example: In the following diagram to move the Knight from g6 to f4 you would notate as N6f4, where the 6 represents the rank the Knight is on that you wish to move and uniquely identifies it from the other Knight.

In the rare scenario where you have three Knights that can go to the same square and you have to identify exactly which one you can use both the file and the rank.  Example: In the diagram below three Knights can move to d4. If we want to move the Knight on b2 to d4 then we specify as Nb3d4, where b3 uniquely identifies this Knight from the other two.

• #6
Wow thanks that's really good. And it's knight on b3 by the way.
One other note: notation is easy to practice since when you move a piece in a "diagram"/chessboard in chess.com (http://www.chess.com), the notation appears underneath. For example, on the diagrams above me right now, the notation appears beneath the arrows and above the "white to move."
• #7

bump for any beginners out there (not for comments)

• #8
Lord-Chaos wrote:

Well i'm sure over 99% of you here know what and how notation works.

Heres a key (its easy, each letter for its capital/first letter of the word)

B= Bishop

N = Knight (yes, not K because K is king. You'll remember this easily though)

R = Rook

Q = Queen

K = King

the file row letter = Pawn

The pawn is a bit more complicated. If the pawn moves on the same row, you don't have to say its name, or, you don't need to say its row. So the pawn on the e file moves to e4, you only say e4, not ee4. But if it moves to another row (via capturing), then you do. So its exd5 for a e file pawn to capture a pawn on d5. I'll go on to capturing later.

On a board, you have your letters and numbers going down each side right?

Example: e4 e5 Nf3 Nc6

Castling

This is pretty easy, 0-0 is for king side castling and 0-0-0 is for queen side castling. You can remember it by the spaces between the king and rook using the "0"s as spaces, but its pretty simple to remember really.

Capturing another piece

When you capture another piece, you put your piece letter (eg B) followed by a "x" to represent capturing, then the square you move to. You don't put the piece you capture. So Nxe4 would mean you take SOMETHING on e4.

Checking

When you check the king, all you do is add a "+" sign to then end of your "move" (the piece and the square it moves it, and if so, the capture sign). So Qxf7+ would mean you took on f7 and you checked the king.

Checkmate

The thing you all want in chess =D (hopefully...) same as checking the king (checking, hahaha yes im immature), you'll be adding a simple sign to the end of your "move". This is it: "#", or sometimes less used, "++", which is two check signs together.

Same piece moving to the Same square

If two of the same type of pieces can move to the same square then you must specify which piece will move to that square. You do this by adding the file and/or rank to the piece notation that uniquely identifies it from the other.

Example: in the position below if you wanted to move your Knight on g3 to f5 your notation would be Ngf5, if the other Knight then Ndf5, where the g and d represent the file the Knight is on that you wish to move and uniquely identifies them from each other.

If both Knights were on the same file then you would notate them using the rank number.  Example: In the following diagram to move the Knight from g6 to f4 you would notate as N6f4, where the 6 represents the rank the Knight is on that you wish to move and uniquely identifies it from the other Knight.

In the rare scenario where you have three Knights that can go to the same square and you have to identify exactly which one you can use both the file and the rank.  Example: In the diagram below three Knights can move to d4. If we want to move the Knight on b3 to d4 then we specify as Nb3d4, where b3 uniquely identifies this Knight from the other two.

Thats about it, it's not as complicated as it looks. Have fun!

Thank you for the explanation, it's very useful..

¿What happen with analysis notation?

I really appreciate help with that.

F/

• #9

What's analysis notation? I've got the normal notation down and I don't know any other =P

• #10

One thing, sometimes I see !! or !? etc., what does this mean (if anything)??

• #11

Thank you for the explanation.  I have not played tournament chess since winning the under 1600 section in a club championship in Rochester, NY in 1987. Just joined USCF and will soon be playing in rated tournaments here in California.  I only know the descriptive notation and needed a quick lesson on algebraic since it seems to be the standard now.  You made it very simple to understand.

• #12
Tmcboyle wrote:

One thing, sometimes I see !! or !? etc., what does this mean (if anything)??

anyone?

• #13
wildcatriver wrote:
Tmcboyle wrote:

One thing, sometimes I see !! or !? etc., what does this mean (if anything)??

anyone?

!! brilliant move

! good move

!? interesting move

?! dubious move

?? blunder

• #14
[COMMENT DELETED]
• #15

Thanks so much. You helped a rookie, well of course, which is me.

• #16

What is 0-1 or 1-0 then? Is it castling too or just the wins?

• #17

If the pawn capture is unambiguous, it is often written without the rank.  Thus, the example given earlier of exd5 can be written simply as ed (assuming there are not doubled pawns on both the e and d files!).

• #18

1-0 is a win by White and 0-1 is a win by Black.  This notation has nothing to do with castling. Of course, 1/2-1/2 denotes a draw.

• #19

Oh ok, thanks

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