[Retros] 50 moves rule

Otto Janko otto at janko.at
Fri Dec 29 12:54:55 EST 2006

Dear Retro-Friends,

I searched the web a little bit for not-current chess rules and not-current
codexes - the result was very poor. For example, the current codex at


does not even have a publication date - the page "last updated" in February
1999, but there is a chapter "Proposed amendments (Wageningen 2006)". When
has this codex agreed, and which codex was valid until then?

As this discussion shows it may be very useful to have all agreed codexes
and all agreed FIDE rules handy - it should be available on the Web. Many
problems may only be valid if one considers the then-current codex or rules.
If someone has ancient codexes (and ancient FIDE rules) handy, she/he may
send it to me (scanned images are acceptable). I will publish it on the
Retro Corner, and at least the ancient codexes should be published on the
PCCC Website as well.

Best Regards,

- Otto Janko [mailto:otto at janko.at] [http://www.janko.at]
-- Those who desire to give up freedom in order to gain security,
- will not have, nor do they deserve, either one." [Benjamin Franklin]

> -----Original Message-----

> From: retros-bounces at janko.at

> [mailto:retros-bounces at janko.at] On Behalf Of Valery Liskovets

> Sent: Friday, December 29, 2006 12:53 PM

> To: afretro at yandex.ru; The Retrograde Analysis Mailing List

> Subject: Re: [Retros] 50 moves rule


> Dear retro-friends,


> Practically all my retro-life, started in 1965, I knew about

> an important discrepancy between the play and composition

> 50-move rules. In principle I don't count such a situation

> inadmissible: in (retro-)composition we need a more stable,

> profound and uniform treatment of most sophisticated rules.

> Moreover, I have not been satisfied by the fact that the Piran

> Codex mentions only castling, not its loss (nor the loss of

> starting e.p.).


> Naturally I'm disappointed by the currently acting Codex in

> this respect, despite that every treatment of this rule can be

> fruitful for RA. In particular I composed a speculative by

> intention problem with a bit provocative stipulation

> "#101 AP(pRA) Current Codex" ("Shakhm. Kompoz.", 2003,

> 3 Pr.: r3kr1n/Pp1p1pKP/1P1P1Pp1/6Pb/3P2R1/8/3P4/8), where

> in the main partial solution with Black to move (AP after Keym),

> only 1.d5 prevents from an "anti-Piran" automatic draw after

> legalizing 50... 0-0-0 (=); and the same threat motivates 51.d4.

> Naturally, I don't consider this to be a noticeable

> contribution to RA.


> As to the history and legal documents, I don't have the Piran

> Codex immediately with me and don't remember whether I saw

> it in English. Instead, 3 years ago N.Plaksin sent me a curious

> 8-page document (pp.3-10) entitled

> RULES REGELN PRAVILA "The Codex of Problem-chess"

> with no other descriptors. It looks like an excerpt from

> (or supplement to) "Problem" and is marked "Bilten, Zagreb,

> Aug. 1958" by hand. I suspect this is a pre-publication in "Problem",

> No 49-54 (?). AFAIK, the official text was published as "Kodex

> fuer Schachkompositionen" in "Problem", (Sept.) 1958, No 55-60,

> pp.117-124. The Piran Codex was officially approved and came in

> force on the XXX FIDE Congress in Luxemburg, Sept. 1959.


> Here is Art.5 of the above-mentioned document (without referred

> commentaries):


> If the solution necessarily asks for more than 50 moves

> without any capture, pawn-move or castling, the position is

> not a draw.


> If provable by retroanalysis that one or more of such moves

> directly preceded the solution and the total amounts to or

> surmounts 50 moves, the position is automatically a draw.


> Is this the finally approved text?


> Valery Liskovets


> afretro wrote:


> > Hello to all,

> > Some 30 years ago Nikita Plaksin published in Shakhmaty v

> SSSR a small article in which he wrote that, according to the

> (then) recently adopted new version of 50-moves remis rule,

> castling was proclaimed to play the same part as pawn move or

> capture. For decades I was convinced that this was indeed so;

> moreover, FIDE Album 1992-1994 contains problem H19 from S.

> and Y. Volobuyev (not Volibiev, as in the Album) which is

> based on the above-mentioned interpretation of the 50-moves

> rule. Then I discovered that this interpretation is not

> present in any legal documents. Makes one wonder where that

> rumor originated from.

> > Merry Christmas to everyone who celebrates it, and a happy

> New Year to every member of the Retro Corner!

> > Yours,

> > Andrey

> > _______________________________________________

> > Retros mailing list

> > Retros at janko.at

> > http://www.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/retros


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