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By Edward Lasker

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Extra resources for Chess and Checkers - The Way to Mastership

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The fact that a Pawn move opens an outlet for a piece is not sufficient. If possible Pawn moves will have to be found which enable the development of more than one piece for they will lead to an advantage in the mobilization unless the opponent, too, hastens the development of his pieces by equally good Pawn moves. The only Pawn moves which fit this description are moves with the King's or Queen's Pawns as they open lines for Queen and Bishop−− apart from an additional square for the Knight−−while the other Pawns cannot free the way for more than one piece.

He will not, of course, knowingly do so unless he expects to obtain some other advantage which will at least compensate for his loss of material. Such compensation can only be afforded by a superiority of the position. In as much as a position can only be considered superior if it enables the mating of the opposing King or the obtaining of an advantage in material which will secure a win in the ending, it is evident that in sacrificing a player really never intends to give up more than he gets, but that on the contrary he expects to gain more than he loses.

The only Pawn moves which fit this description are moves with the King's or Queen's Pawns as they open lines for Queen and Bishop−− apart from an additional square for the Knight−−while the other Pawns cannot free the way for more than one piece. Whether the move with the King's Pawn or the Queen's Pawn is better when beginning the game is impossible to say. In neither case can it be proved that White can obtain an advantage which is sufficient to win the game. With correct play on both sides it can be only White who gains an advantage, for he has the first move and so he is one move ahead of Black in the development as long as he does not waste any time on maneuvers which do not increase the mobility of his pieces.

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Chess and Checkers - The Way to Mastership by Edward Lasker


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