20 ( +1 | -1 ) Jeapordy Chess QuestionI was watching jeapordy a while ago and they asked the question: What does the word checkmate mean? I was curious to see how many people acually know the answer to this question. Now i know.
74 ( +1 | -1 ) Jeapordy Chess QuestionThis is an interesting question. Were I a contestant on that show I would have replied that checkmate is a position where a king is in check and there is no saving move. The actual word Checkmate may come from the old Persian phrase "shah manad", meaning "the king is helpless". Some think it comes from "shah mat" meaning "the kind is dead," but how can that be? The king never dies in chess; he is trapped in a checkmate from which he cannot escape, not killed. That is pershaps the chief unique identifier of chess. I guess when you're on a quiz show, you can know too much and not get the right answer. I'll be interested in hearing what the the answer was that Alec accepted. Regards, Oliver
32 ( +1 | -1 ) Neat, butThats the TV Show Jeopardy. I always thought it meant "the king is dead" also until I looked it up in "The Oxford Companion to Chess" which gives "The word is derived from the Persian shah, meaning king, and mat, meaning helpless or defeated." Could mat also mean dead in Persian? I wonder.
3 ( +1 | -1 ) its Shah MaatTo maat means to defeat..
4 ( +1 | -1 ) or infactbaseline has already answered that..
13 ( +1 | -1 ) Mat means dead in arabicKi shaah (arabic) = cover or protect the king = check mat (arabic) = dead and this is a reply to check (no place to go to, or can not be protected)
57 ( +1 | -1 ) thank you messiryI can see the natural progression. Chess is believed to have spread from India to Persia and from there it became popular through out the near east. The Persian Shah Maat "the king is defeated" became Ki shaah mat "the king is dead" and it is from the Arab world that Europe received the game. It's interesting that along with chess much of the classical Greek and Roman knowledge and learning which had been lost to Europe during the dark ages were preserved and reintroduced by the Arabs. A truly wonderful gift.