[Retros] Castling temporarily changed and repetition of position

andrew buchanan andrew at anselan.com
Thu Oct 18 06:29:10 EDT 2007

FIDE Head Arbiter Guert Gijssen reported in chesscafe in 2004 that he wanted to
remove the "temporarily". He proposed this change to the (then draft) rules,
but was outvoted, and he was baffled why anyone would vote against his

The numerous lacunae in the rules and (particularly) the conventions really
make me appreciate the competence and "dimensional awareness" of the sequence
of Rules Editors (currently Mark Gottlieb) for the excellent card game "Magic
the Gathering", which is inherently *far* more complicated than chess. The
precision of the rules are a joy to work within.

I think the fundamental difference is organizational. MtG is driven by a
corporation (Wizards of the Coast, a division of Hasbro) while chess is managed
by some kind of federal body.

Nevertheless, the success of the Open Source movement in IT and the ability of
the chess problem community to generate wonderful, complicated chess
*compositions* point to the capability of federated model to create
complicated, robust artifacts.

Why has this dynamic not worked in the task of creating a proper, robust set of
rules and (particularly) conventions? And how can we fix it? Don't we deserve


--- "Rol, Guus" <G.A.Rol at umcutrecht.nl> wrote:

> One might argue that this rule was designed very cleverly to not just

> include regular chess but also fairy variants. Notably, in Circe, the

> designations 'temporarily' (rook moved) and 'permanently' (king moved)

> gain meaningful significance in separating the 2 flavours of "no

> castling right". But I am afraid we are bestowing too much honor on the

> FIDE lawmakers by attributing them with this degree of 'dimensional

> awareness'. My guess would be that the wording refers to an old time

> distinction between castling as a statutory right (a potential) and

> castling as an executable right (immediate availability). In such a

> context 'temporarily' could refer to a temporarily unavailable option to

> castle and 'permanently' to an irreversible loss of that option. Even

> so, it is still hard to see how this distinction carries any meaning in

> the repetition rule.


> Guus Rol.



> -----Oorspronkelijk bericht-----

> Van: retros-bounces at janko.at [mailto:retros-bounces at janko.at] Namens


> Verzonden: woensdag 17 oktober 2007 12:12

> Aan: retros at janko.at

> Onderwerp: [Retros] Castling temporarily changed and repetition of

> position



> Dear retro-fans


> I attended a formation for referees this WE, and we discussed over the

> word "temporarily" in the draw by repetition article:


> >9.2

> >The game is drawn, upon a correct claim by the player having the move,

> >when the same position, for at least the third time (not necessarily

> >by a repetition of moves)

> > a.is about to appear, if he first writes his move on his scoresheet

> > and declares to the arbiter his intention to make this move, or

> > b. has just appeared, and the player claiming the draw has the move.

> >Positions as in (a) and (b) are considered the same, if the same player

> >has the move, pieces of the same kind and colour occupy the same

> squares,

> >and the possible moves of all the pieces of both players are the same.

> >

> >Positions are not the same if a pawn that could have been captured en

> >passant can no longer in this manner be captured or if the right to

> >castle has been changed temporarily or permanently.


> My view is that the word temporarily is superfluous since the case where

> castling rights will change temporarily will never happen: with all

> other pieces on the same positions and with the same move possibility,

> if a castling is possible/impossible on one of the position, it will be

> exactly the same in the repeated positions.


> Or am i wrong?



> Best regards, Alain




> Alain Brobecker (abrobecker at yahoo.com) |_ _ _ |_

> http://abrobecker.free.fr/ |_)(_|(_|| ) of Arm's Tech


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