abcdefgh
8
b7 black circle
c7 black cross
d7 black circle
c6 white upside-down pawn
d4 black circle
e4 black upside-down pawn
h4 black circle
e3 black circle
f3 black cross
g3 black circle
f2 white upside-down pawn
8
77
66
55
44
33
22
11
abcdefgh
The diagram shows white Berolina pawn move options (black dots) and capture squares ("×"). If the white f2-pawn advances to d4 in a single move, Black's e4-pawn can capture it en passant on e3.

The Berolina pawn (also known as Berlin pawn,[1] anti-pawn, or simply Berolina) is a popular[2] fairy chess piece based on the pawn. It may move one vacant square diagonally forward, it may move two vacant squares diagonally forward on its first move, and it may capture one square vertically forward. It was invented by Edmund Nebermann in 1926,[3] who named it after the city of Berlin in which he worked. The Berolina pawn is featured in several chess variants, including Berolina chess, and these variants have been played in tournaments. Additionally, the Berolina pawn has found frequent use in chess problems.[2][4]

In this article, the Berolina pawn is represented by an inverted pawn.

Description

The Berolina pawn moves, without capturing, one square diagonally forward. It captures one square straight forward. (Thus, it is the converse of a standard chess pawn, which moves straight forward and captures diagonally forward.)

The Berolina has the option to move two squares diagonally forward on its first move. It can also capture en passant: a Berolina pawn, attacking a square that has just been bypassed by an enemy pawn's two-square advance, may capture the enemy pawn as if it had moved only one square. Like the orthodox pawn, the Berolina pawn is promoted when it reaches its last rank.

Example problem

Dr. C. C. Lytton (original)[5]
abcdefgh
8
e7 black knight
f7 white queen
b5 black upside-down pawn
d5 black rook
a4 white king
d3 white knight
a2 black king
d2 white upside-down pawn
h1 white rook
8
77
66
55
44
33
22
11
abcdefgh
White mates in 2

Solution: 1.Qf2 ...

  • 1...Rd4+ 2.b4#
  • 1...Rxd3 2.dxd3#
  • 1...Rc5 2.c3#
  • 1...Re5 2.e3#
  • 1...Rf5 2.f4#

Berolina chess

abcdefgh
8
a8 black rook
b8 black knight
c8 black bishop
d8 black queen
e8 black king
f8 black bishop
g8 black knight
h8 black rook
a7 black upside-down pawn
b7 black upside-down pawn
c7 black upside-down pawn
d7 black upside-down pawn
e7 black upside-down pawn
f7 black upside-down pawn
g7 black upside-down pawn
h7 black upside-down pawn
a2 white upside-down pawn
b2 white upside-down pawn
c2 white upside-down pawn
d2 white upside-down pawn
e2 white upside-down pawn
f2 white upside-down pawn
g2 white upside-down pawn
h2 white upside-down pawn
a1 white rook
b1 white knight
c1 white bishop
d1 white queen
e1 white king
f1 white bishop
g1 white knight
h1 white rook
8
77
66
55
44
33
22
11
abcdefgh
Berolina chess starting position.

Berolina chess, also called Berlin chess,[6] is a chess variant employing the Berolina pawn. Berolina chess follows the same rules as standard chess, except that all the pawns are replaced by Berolina pawns. A number of tournaments have been conducted, including a correspondence event in 1957.[5]

Strategy implications

Pritchard writes, "Pawns have greater mobility and can concentrate in the centre, a common opening strategy."[6] Since a pawn attacks or defends only one square, their attacking ability is less, and diagonal pawn chains cannot be formed, resulting in frequent open files. Pawns are especially dangerous in the endgame since the route to promotion is easier. Draws in Berolina chess are rare.[7]

Example game

Ralph Betza vs. Will Viveiros; NOST[a] tournament (1977)[5]
1.ac4 ec5 2.d5 df5 3.bd4 Nc6 4.Bb2 Nf6 5.de3 e4 6.hf4 exe3 7.exe3 Ng4 8.Qd2 Qf6 9.Ne2 Nce5 10.Bc1 h6 11.ce4 Nc4 12.Qc3 Qg5 13.g3 Nf6 14.Nd2 Nxd2 15.Bxd2 f5 16.fe5 Nh5 17.d6 c6 (diagram) 18.e5 Qg7 19.Nd4 g4 20.Bb5 gxg3 21.Nxc6 cxc6 22.Bxc6+ Ke7 23.Bxa8 Ba6 24.c7 1–0

abcdefgh
8
a8 black rook
c8 black bishop
e8 black king
f8 black bishop
h8 black rook
a7 black upside-down pawn
c7 black upside-down pawn
f7 black upside-down pawn
c6 black upside-down pawn
d6 white upside-down pawn
h6 black upside-down pawn
c5 black upside-down pawn
d5 white upside-down pawn
f5 black upside-down pawn
g5 black queen
h5 black knight
d4 white upside-down pawn
e4 white upside-down pawn
c3 white queen
e3 white upside-down pawn
g3 white upside-down pawn
d2 white bishop
e2 white knight
g2 white upside-down pawn
a1 white rook
e1 white king
f1 white bishop
h1 white rook
8
77
66
55
44
33
22
11
abcdefgh
Position after 17...c6

Related pawn variants

abcdefgh
8
d6 black circle
e6 black cross
f6 black circle
d5 black cross
e5 white upside-down pawn
f5 black cross
8
77
66
55
44
33
22
11
abcdefgh
The Berolina Plus
abcdefgh
8
d6 white circle
e6 white circle
f6 white circle
e5 white upside-down pawn
8
77
66
55
44
33
22
11
abcdefgh
The sergeant can move to or capture on white dots.

Two famous pawn variants also used in problem compositions are the Berolina Plus and the sergeant.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ NOST (kNights Of the Square Table), a (now defunct) correspondence game club formed in 1960 by Bob Lauzon and Jim France, enjoyed several hundred active members.[8]

References

  1. ^ Dickins, Anthony (1971) [Corrected repub. of 1969 2nd ed., The Q Press, Richmond, Surrey, England]. A Guide to Fairy Chess. New York: Dover Publications Inc. p. 12. ISBN 0-486-22687-5.
  2. ^ a b Pritchard (2007), p. 59: "Tournaments have been held, combination games have been tried, and 'Berolina pawns' have long been popular with problemists. (Funkschack, August 1926)"
  3. ^ Funkschach, 15 August 1926
  4. ^ Hooper & Whyld (1996), p. 38
  5. ^ a b c Pritchard (1994), p. 22
  6. ^ a b Pritchard (1994), p. 21
  7. ^ Pritchard (1994), pp. 21–22
  8. ^ Pritchard (1994), p. 210

Bibliography