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with Parsees, Hindoos, and Mussulmen; they all play it according to the rules annexed, and I have never met with one among them who was acquainted with the game as played by us in Europe.'
"Rules of the Game of Chess as played by the Natives of India.
"1. Place the board with either a Black or White square on your right hand, it is of no consequence which.
"2.-Your King must be placed on the right hand of your Queen; consequently your King and the adverse Queen will be opposed, and vice versa.
"3.-The King's, Queen's, and Rook's Pawns only are permitted to be moved two squares their first moves; and if either of these pieces, viz., the King, the Queen, or the Rook, is moved before its respective Pawn is played, the said Pawn is restricted to move one square.
"4.-Castling is not allowed, but the King, once during the game, may be moved like a Knight, if he has not been previously checked, or if the move will not expose him to check. The King, in making the Knight's move, can capture either a piece or Pawn.
“5.—A Pawn, upon arriving at the Rook's, Bishop's, or Knight's eighth square, can be exchanged only for the piece which originally stood upon that square; but
1 The writer must have lived in a very out of the way place indeed. In almost all parts of India the natives play our game, and play it well. The fact is simply this, that among themselves they prefer their own game, but they are at all times ready to encounter a European in his own way, as we have seen in the case of the four Bramins with Lieut. Moor. I must further beg leave to hint to the correspondent, should this meet his eye, that he ought to have eschewed the vulgar word Mussulmen, used only by European newspaper editors, and gentlemen and lady travellers who think that Mussulmen is the plural of Musalmān.-F.
upon its arrival at the King's or Queen's eighth square, a Queen or any other piece may be claimed for it. A Pawn cannot take another Pawn "en passant."
"6.-When all the pieces are taken the game is drawn, although there be Pawns left, and if all the pieces of one party are taken before checkmate is given, the game is likewise drawn.
"With these exceptions the game is played as it is in England."
We shall now conclude with an account of two very eminent Hindū players. The first is thus noticed by Mrs. Postans, in her work on Western India, viz.—
"Professional Chess-players are less common than might be supposed; but some of the Moslems play scientific and good game. I have never found them object to our pieces, notwithstanding the use of any images is forbidden by the precepts of the Koran. Most good players prefer not looking at the board, and some are sufficient adepts to conduct two games at the same time. Others place a ring on any Pawn selected by their antagonist, and give checkmate with the same.
"The Philidor of Western India is a Hindoo, called Ramdass, a native of Kattiwar. This man plays his best game without looking at the board, and as he sits in a corner of the room, it is curious to hear him muttering over the chances of the game, and reasoning with himself on the consequences of his moves. If a false step is made by his adversary, Ramdass immediately detects it, and enumerates with ease, and in correct succession, the previous moves of both parties; when arrived at that which he is satisfied he can follow up with one of his ingenious mates, Ramdass patiently awaits his adversary's move, and then springing from the ground, instantly fixes on the required piece, and drops it on the effective
square, with a smile of triumph, and a monosyllable "bus" (enough), that 'tis hard to bear.
"Ramdass told me he played Chess at nine years old; his countenance is heavy and his eyes apparently weighed down by intense thought. With constant practice and a good memory, a student of Chess, previously well acquainted with its scientific principles, might, he averred, acquire his method of playing without a board, in six months."
In the very last number of "Allen's Indian Mail," (May 12th, 1860), we have an account of a Bramin in the Madras Presidency who is now exhibiting the most extraordinary feats of memory that we have ever seen recorded. As the late Mr. Cobbett used to say, member I do not vouch for the fact." I merely have it from highly respectable authority, and if true, the Madras Bramin beats our transatlantic cousins all to nothing. The following is the account to which we allude:--
"BELLARY.-A Brahmin has lately been exhibiting at Bellary extraordinary powers of memory; he is able simultaneously to concentrate his attention on twelve or more different subjects. He performed the other day before a large audience of influential natives of the place, and gave proof of a truly wonderful scope of memory. At this exhibition he played two games of Chess and one of cards without looking at the boards. While thus engaged, verses in Tamil, Telugu, Marhatta, Hindustani, Persian, and Sanscrit, were dictated to him; the words of each verse being given promiscuously, but with the number of their order. The Hindu calendar for three days was at the same time read to him; a bell was struck, and several small pebbles were thrown at his back. The above occupied about three hours, after which he remained perfectly silent for one hour, and
then, to the intense amazement of all present, he named every one of the moves on the Chess-boards, every card played, and by whom, repeated all the verses correctly, with the words in proper order, gave the calendar verbatim, and to crown all, told the number of strokes on the bell, and how many pebbles had touched his back. This man has been exhibiting his powers of memory in Bombay, Poona, and other places, and holds among other testimonials, one from Lord Elphinstone."
Chess to the Eastward of Hindūstān—Chess in Burmha Chess in Sumatra - Chess in Java-Chess in Malacca-Chess in Borneo-Chess in China.
IN our last chapter we retraced our steps from the Nile eastwards to the Ganges, with a view to shew the present state of Chess in those extensive regions. We shall now conclude our description, with a brief sketch of the game as played in the countries situated to the east and south-east of India, the land where it first originated. Our authorities here are, with one exception, very sound and reliable, though not so copious as those to which we have already had recourse.
Chess in Burmha, &c.
Of the Burmese game of Chess, we have a very satisfactory account by Captain Hiram Cox, who, at the end of the last century, resided for some time in the Burman empire, more particularly at the Court of Amarapoorah. This account was communicated to the Vice-President of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, in 1799, and printed in the seventh volume of that Society's Transactions. The description of the Burmese game will, so far as I have been able to ascertain, apply in general to the regions situated between India and China, viz.: Tibet, Burmha, Siam and Cochin China. In all of these countries we find the medieval game still in vogue, simply because,