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The explanation of the position, powers, and moves of the pieces, he gives as follows:

"As there are nine pieces instead of eight, to occupy the rear rank, they stand on the lines between, and not within, the squares; the game is consequently played on the lines.

"The King or Chong stands on the middle line of this his moves resemble those of our King, but are confined to the fortress marked out for him.



The two Princes, or Sou, stand on each side of him, and have equal powers and limits.

"The Mandarins, or Tchong, answer to our Bishops, and have the same moves, except that they cannot cross the water, or white space in the middle of the board, to annoy the enemy, but stand on the defensive.

"The Knights, or rather Horses, called Mài, stand and move like ours in every respect.

"The War Chariots, or Tche, resemble our Rooks or Castles.

"The Rocket Boys, or Pao, are pieces whose motions and powers were unknown to us. They act with the direction of a rocket, and can take none of their adversary's men that have not a piece or Pawn intervening. To defend your men from this attack, it is necessary to open the line between either, to take off the check on the King, or to save a man from being captured by the Pao. Their operation is otherwise like that of the Rook, their stations are marked between the pieces and Pawns.

"The five Pawns, or Ping, make up the number of men equal to that of our board (i.e. sixteen). Instead of taking sideways like ours, they have the Rook's motion, except that it is limited to one step, and is not retrograde. Another important point in which the Ping differs from ours, is that they continue in statu quo after reaching

their adversary's head quarters. It will appear, however, that the Chinese pieces far exceed the proportion of ours, which occasions the whole force of the contest to fall on them, and thereby precludes the beauty and variety of our game, when reduced to a struggle between the Pawns, who are capable of the highest promotion, and often change the fortune of the day. The posts of the Ping are marked in front."

Captain Cox then proceeds to give us his own more accurate account of the Chinese game, as follows:

"So far Mr. Irwin. His account being, according to my apprehension, indistinct and incomplete, and to my knowledge in some respects erroneous, I have been induced to make further inquiries on the subject, the result of which, I hope, will supply his deficiencies, or at least give us a more accurate idea of the Chinese game. "The game is called by the Chinese Choke-choo-hong-ki, literally the play of the science of war.

'The piece 1, which we call the King, is named Choohong, which may be rendered the "scientific in war," or "generalissimo;" he moves one pace at a time in any direction, the same as our King, but within the limits of his fort.

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"The two pieces of next rank, No. 2, 2, are called Sou by the Chinese, which literally means 'bearded old men," or "men of great experience in war." These are supposed to act as counsellors to the Choohong, and have precisely the same moves and powers as the Chekoy, in the Burmha, or Vizier in the Persian game, except that they are confined to the limits of the fort with the Choohong.

"The two pieces, No. 3, 3, erroneously named Mandarins by Mr. Irwin, are called Tchong by the Chinese, which means an Elephant; and they have precisely the same moves and powers as the Elephant in the Persian

and modern Hindoostanee game. That is, they move diagonally in advance or retrograde, always two steps at a move; but the Chinese Tchong has not the power of jumping over the head of an intermediate piece as the Persian Elephant does; neither can it advance beyond the limits of its own section, for a reason I shall assign below.

"The two pieces, No. 4, 4, are called Mài by the Chinese, meaning horse or cavalry; they have precisely the same moves and powers as in the English and Persian games, and can advance into the enemy's


"The two pieces, No. 5, 5, are called Tche by the Chinese, meaning War Chariots, and have the same powers and moves as the Rooks or Castles in the European game, advancing also into the enemy's section.

"The two pieces, No. 6, 6, are called Paoo by the Chinese, meaning Artillery or Rocket-men. The Paoo can move the whole range of both sections direct, transverse, or retrograde, like the English Castle, and if any of the adversary's pieces or Pawns intervene in the direct line, he takes the one immediately in the rear of it.

"The Pawns, No. 7, 7, 7, 7, 7, are called Ping by the Chinese, meaning foot-soldiers; they move one square or step at a time direct in advance, and take their antagonist transversely to the right or left (not diagonally as ours do), nor have they the advantage of obtaining an advance rank as in the English game.

"The blank space in the Table, 8, 8, is called Hoa ki by the Chinese, which literally means a trench, and is understood to have been made for defence against an invading army. The Horses, Chariots, and Foot-soldiers are supposed to cross it by means of light bridges of planks; but these not being adequate to bear the bulk

of the Elephants, they are reciprocally obliged to remain within the limits of their respective sections.

"In other respects the game is like the English one, and ends with destroying the forces on either side, or blocking up the Choohong. The board is not chequered black and white, but merely subdivided, as in the diagram: the pieces are round counters of wood or ivory, with the distinguishing names wrote on them, half dyed red, and half black.”


From the preceding description we arrive at the conclusion that the Chinese Chess is merely a variation or modification of the Burmese game already described; that is, of the Shatranj or mediæval game of Asia and Europe. The board is the same in all; and so is the number of men, though differently disposed. The "General" is our King, with a more limited range of action. The two Counsellors, or "Bearded old Men," have the moves and powers of the Farz or mediæval Queen, and like the King, are restricted in their movements. The Horses and chariots are precisely the same as in the Shatranj; and the same may be said of the Ping or Pawns, with some limitations.

The principal variations in the Chinese game are, 1st., The Pieces are stationed on the outer lines or angles of the top and bottom squares of the board; and thence they are increased to nine in number, instead of our eight; there being two Counsellors instead of one. In the second place the "Pawns" are reduced to the number of five on each side, and stationed close to the frontier line (marked 8 in the diagram). 3. The two pieces of Artillery (No. 6) are the chief novelty in the Chinese game; and I must confess that I am not satisfied with

the accounts given us of these pieces, either by Mr. Irwin, or by Captain Cox.1 Lastly, we have a division line running across the middle of the Chinese board, which some call a river, some a ditch, and others a rampart.

I think the blank space in the middle of the Chinese board was never intended to represent a River, whatever else it may be; for, in that case, we should very naturally expect to find Boats or Ships in use, as in the more ancient Chaturanga. I have heard it urged as a plausible argument that from the so-called River of the Chinese, originated the Boat or Ship of the Hindus. This is utterly invalid, for the Chinese themselves, so far as we know, never had the Boat or Ship on their board.

I attach no great importance to the legend extracted from the Concum or Chinese annals; except that it furnishes us with a date of the period about which the Celestial Mandarin, Hansing, is supposed to have invented the game. It is curious, by the way, to observe the identity of this legend with that handed down to us, respecting Palamedes at the Siege of Troy. The Shensi province of China is situated in the north-west of the empire, and borders on Tibet to the west, and Tartary to the north, from which it is separated by the great wall. It is quite possible, nay, very probable, then, that the game of Chess penetrated into China from Tibet, at the period alluded to; and that the honourable Hansing appropriated to himself the credit of its invention.

1 It is clear that the Rocket had the move of the Rook, with this condition, that some piece or pieces must intervene between him and the piece aimed at. Now the question is-must the intervening pieces be all hostile, or may they be partly hostile and partly friendly ?—F.

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