Ajedrez Inmortal

Para los fanaticos del ajedrez. Algo distinto en sus vidas. Inmortalicese mirando este blog. For fans of chess. Something different in their lives. Inmortalized looking at this blog. Для любителей шахмат. Что-то другой в своей жизни.

martes, 16 de octubre de 2012


Teacher of chess: Mariano Victor Piñeyro.

El Ajedrez Chino o Shiang-Chi o Siang K'i es un tipo del Shatranj modificado considerablemente; la primera referencia que se hace de él ha sido encontrada en un libro llamado "El libro de Maravillas" de Nui Seng-ju que murió en el 847 d.C.

Las piezas son discos simples con caracteres chinos sobre ellos para diferenciarlos y se juegan en las puntas del tablero en lugar de dentro de los escaques. El tablero no escaqueado consiste de 10 puntas por 9 con dos características notablemente distintivas: primeramente, dividiendo a los jugadores en el medio está el "Río", un área abierta; también, cada jugador tiene un área de 9 puntas centrada en el borde más cercano llamado la "Fortaleza".

1. El General - se mueve ortogonalmente un espacio pero no puede moverse fuera de la Fortaleza o de tal forma que el general opuesto esté en la misma fila sin ningún hombre entre los dos.
2. Los Mandarines - se mueven solo un punto diagonalmente pero debe permanecer dentro de la Fortaleza.
3. Los Elefantes - se mueven dos puntos diagonalmente pero no pueden saltar piezas interpuestas y no pueden cruzar el Río. 

4. Los Jinetes - se mueven como un caballo en el Ajedrez pero no pueden saltar piezas interpuestas.
5. Los Carruajes - se mueven como una Torre en el Ajedrez.
6. Los Cañones - se mueven cualquier distancia ortogonalmente pero solo pueden capturar si han saltado sobre una única pieza interpuesta
7. Los Soldados - se mueven un punto hacia adelante hasta que llegan al otro lado del Río con lo cual se les permite moverse un punto lateral también. No hay promoción.

En el Xiang Qi, el concepto de "Tablas" no existe. Si un jugador no puede mover, ese jugador ha perdido, lo que sirve para remover uno de los aspectos más tediosos encontrados en el juego europeo. A menudo se alude que el Xiang Qi es el juego más popular en el mundo, lo cual es cierto pero, por supuesto, debido en gran parte a la gran población de China (el Ajedrez europeo es más ubicuo pero los europeos no presumen de esto dado que tiene poco que ver con las cualidades del juego y mucho que ver con el dominio militar y político durante la última mitad el segundo milenio d.C.).

Fuente:  http://www.acanomas.com/Historia-Juegos-Tradicionales/691/Xiang-Qi-%28Ajedrez-Chino%29.htm

The problem comes from the Chinese writing and grammar. There are always several ways to interpret an obscure passage in an old text and, moreover, an ideogram may have several meanings. The word "xiangqi" is written with two characters of whom the first, xìang, nowadays denotes elephant; portrait; phenomenon; ivory; stellar configuration; omen; acting; playing; official interpreter, the second, , means chessman; chess or similar games (ex: weiqi); foundation !

A first plausible source is the Xiangjing (‘Classic of the symbol game’) dated from 569 and attributed to emperor Wu (r. 561-578) of the later (Northern-) Zhou dynasty. Although that book is not extant anymore, the preface written by Wang Bao (died in 576) has been handed down to us. There we learn that the Xiangxi was a kind of astrological game and nothing proves that it was identical to the Xiangqi. Three quotes from Linghu Defen (583-661), Wei Zhang (580-643) and Li Yanshou (612-678) confirm that emperor Wu from Beizhou dynasty has invented a game named Xiangxi.

Also, there is a possibility that a Chess game was evoked in the Fanwang fazang shu ('The comment of the Fanwang jing') by Fazang (643-712). But this still deserves more research.

The eldest undeniable reference for the Xianqi is the Xuanguai lu (‘Tales of the obscure and peculiar’) writen by the Tang Minister of State Niu Sengru (779-847), a collection of tales of the supernatural. One is telling the of  Cen Shun dreaming of a battle to come (which was supposed to occur in 762 AD.): "the celestial Horse springs aslant over three, the Commanders go sideaways and attack on all four sides, the baggage-waggons go straight forwards and never backwards, the six men in armour (or the men armed with six weapons) go in file but no backwards... On both sides stuff was unpacked, stones and arrows flew across." To make it absolutely clear, these moves can be deduced from the text, but not with certainty. Since the source is unique the greatest prudence is recommended. There is just another mention in poem from Niu's contemporary and friend Bo Juyi (772-846) which explicitly evoke Soldiers and Charriots.

One notices that long range weapons are evoked. Are they clues indicating the Cannons? Bowmen and Catapults are also used in Qiguo Xiangxi, a 7-sided variant over a Weiqi board, invented by Sima Guang (1019-1086), inspired by the Warring States period (453-222 BC). 

However, at the very beginning of 12th c., Zhao Buzhi indicated that the game used 34 pieces over the lines of a 11x11 board (this point is not clear, see here). Soon in the Northern Song, the game was stabilized and it is a definitive game which inspireded the poet Liu Kezhuang about 1210. After this date, the references are numerous and first treaties are going to appear soon.

As far as archaeology is concerned, several extant Xiangqi pieces are known from the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1126). The reader will find an excellent paper from Dr. Banaschak (1999) in the Library resuming the current knowledge. The earliest complete set is made of copper and dated from the era Chongning (1102-1106).


The striking point about Xiangqi is that its board is strongly marked. It is difficult to accept that the river and the two palaces can com from an evolution of the Persian/Indian Chatrang and its plain board. 

There are several square patterns in Chinese ancient civilization. The simple square divided in a 3x3 pattern is the supposed architecture of the Mingtang (Palace of the Lights) and dates from the Zhou era (before the 3rd c. BC.). It represents the center, seat of the royalty, from where the government propagates like a shining light. Such a 3x3 palace is exactly the Xiangqi palace.

Under Han era, more elaborate diagrams are found in litterature like the Hetu (Map of Yellow River) and the Luoshu (Script of Luo River). Those patterns are symbolizing the numbers from 1 to 10. Both diagrams ar linked to the famous Yijing, the Book of Changes.

According to legend, as the Sage King Yu the Great (d. 2197 BC.) stood on the banks of the Luo River, a tortoise emerged from the water bearing on its undershell a 3x3 array of the numbers 1 through 9 encoded in dots. The numbers were placed as in the diagram on the cover above. Yu was astonished to find that the numbers in each row, the numbers in each column, and the numbers in each of the two diagonals had the same sum. This was the Luoshu, the unique (up to rotations and reflections) perfect magic square of order three. It was interpreted as a supernatural sign of order in the universe.

The Hetu is said to have appeared on the back of a Dragon-Horse springing out of the Yellow River. 

Source:  http://history.chess.free.fr/xiangqi.htm

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