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The Chess Pieces (The Chessmen):

The Pawnpawn

TES Teaching Resources

Wolverhampton Chess Club

Pawn photoWhat is the abbreviation for a Pawn? P

The pawn can be thought of as a foot soldier that never retreats. The pawn only moves forward along the file on which it stands. It may never move backwards.

For each pawn's first move it may move either:

        • two squares forward or
        • one square forward

Subsequent moves:

  • the pawn may move only one square forward along the file.

Queening - promoting a pawn

If a pawn reaches the last square on the file, gets to the other side of the board, it must be promoted - it can be changed into any other piece except a King.

It can be changed into a Knight, a Bishop, a Rook or a Queen. As the Queen is the most powerful piece on the board, it is nearly always best to change such a pawn into a Queen.. That is why it is called 'Queening'.

The pawn from its starting position can move one or two squares as shown in the diagram.
After it's first move the pawn can only move one square forward,as shown in the three examples in this diagram.
The pawn , in movimg to the last square on its file, must be changed into any piece except a King. This kind of move is known as 'Queening the Pawn', even if the Pawn is changed into a Rook, Bishop or Knight.
White's pawn is about to 'Queen' and in this position would become a Queen or at least a rook.
The Black King moves
White's turn and the Pawn moves to the last square on it's file and becomes a Queen.