Chess is a favorite game for recreational mathematicians — not to play it, but to play around with it. Many puzzles and challenges are based on the moves of chess pieces.
Stretch your brain with these puzzles:
- Can you go on a Knight’s Tour? Start your knight on any square, and try to hop around to all the rest.
- Or, how many queens can you place on the board so that no queen can capture another?
The first known mention of the knight’s tour is in a 9th century Sanskrit poetry book. The n-queens puzzle is newer, first posed by a 19th-century chess player. Read about the history and solutions to these puzzles at Wikipedia:
To Be Continued…
Read all the posts from the September/October 1999 issue of my Mathematical Adventures of Alexandria Jones newsletter.