[Retros] Again about En Passant Chess

Noam Elkies elkies at math.harvard.edu
Sun Mar 25 12:06:39 EDT 2007

Andrew writes:

> The best metaphor to drift into my mind is that each unit is in fact a

> military regiment trailing supply wagons behind it after it moves. [...]

> This metaphor ironically returns to the military origins of chess as a

> wargame. Perhaps once upon a time universal en passant was the standard

> rule for the game, and what we have today for pawns is just the last

> vestige of that ancient and realistic rule... :-)

That's amusing, though the e.p. rule is sufficiently recent that its
history is known more-or-less exactly, and is nothing like the above
just-so story. (If I remember right, it was introduced together with
the pawn's double-move option to prevent that option from creating
passed pawns where none would have existed under the old rules.)


More information about the Retros mailing list