[Retros] DR vs forced ep: what rule predominates?

liskov at im.bas-net.by liskov at im.bas-net.by
Thu Aug 30 15:01:17 EDT 2007

Dear Tom,

I quite agree with your explanation (or interpretation or even
juridical verdict). Of course, my idea was somewhat provocative:
I deliberately tried to read the rules LITERALLY, as is. IMHO,
"MUST" is no less imperative and unconditional per se than
"IMMEDIATELY", isn't it? (Ironically: forced e.p. is seen
immediately while the fact that the position is dead
must be proved, based sometimes on a long analysis!)

Yes, in reality, DR (Art.5.6b) predominates, and it is Art.3.7d on
e.p. that should be relaxed (say, by the footnote: "Unless the game
is over"). Twin (a) in my example confirms this point of view (as
well as your smart reference to Art.5.1).

Maybe, the Laws of Chess (and more generally, non-chess laws) are
full of such hidden subordinations and implied, context-depending
preconditions that are understandable based on common sense. But
for rules impacting on chess composition such a state appears
insatisfactory. In particular, I'm not sure that all retro-experts
will come to the same conclusion and agree with your treatment.

In general, my "blue" dream is not to wait for improvements and
refinements in the Laws of Chess, not to oscilate with changes
in them (sometimes casual) but, instead, to extend the Codex of
Chess Composition by clear, unambiguous, full and more stable
explanations and supplements to all relevant chess game rules:
50 moves (wrt castling, lost castling and e.p.), 3-time repetition
(automatical action), touching pieces (the legal sequence of
touches during a capture), e.p. (forced) and other. "Laws of Chess
refined for chess composition", which are subject to revision in
our own rhythm...

Valery L.

Pastmaker at aol.com wrote:


> I don't understand. If the position is "dead" under 3.7(d) then every

> position thereafter resulting from legal play must also be "dead". If not,

> the

> position was not "dead" to begin with.


> So if an e.p. capture is "playable" in a "dead" position (in the sense that

> it would be a legal move if the game were not over by virtue of rule 3.7(d)),

> it is no different from any other move "playable" in that sense. If the

> position was dead the game was over and rule 3.7(d) is inapplicable.


> Now it may well be that the availability of the e.p. capture is a factor in

> determining if the position is dead. In fact, such a position has been

> demonstrated. But the availibility of the e.p. capture is merely a factor in

> determining if the position is dead. If the position is dead Rule 3.7(d)

> cannot

> force a move because the game has ended.


> Regards to all.

> Tom Volet



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