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This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 2001-01-04
 Author: Hans L. Bodlaender. Grande Acedrex. A large variant from 13th century Europe. (12x12, Cells: 144) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
George Duke wrote on 2015-12-29 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
This game page is twenty years old and Grande Acedrex itself over 700 years. Bishop, or crocodile, was around already in Courier Chess, but Queen apparently not til about 1480, so a great piece like Gryphon precedes Queen by two hundred years. <p> This Unicorn moves as Bishop only after first move as Knight. <p> Better than 17th c. Carrera's with awkward Knight compounds, and better than all the 18th c. Turkish chesses, Grande Acedrex here happens to have been commented only for a year in 2008, not at all the first 13 years or last 6 years. Gryphon and Rook are the strong pieces, the former of most value, and the interactions of all very diverse p-ts would be dramatic.

Yu Ren Dong wrote on 2008-07-04 UTCGood ★★★★
http://history.chess.free.fr/zip/grantacedrex.zip

This file proposes this reconstructed version as well as Murray's or other rules as variants.

Dandolo wrote on 2008-07-04 UTCGood ★★★★
The lion which could only move 3 steps orthogonally is too weak to identify itself with other pieces into war. From Jean-Louis Cazaux' opinion, this lion moves 3 steps orthogonally or 2 steps orthogonally followed by 1 diagonal step. I think the latter would be more credible.

Quintucket (Luke) wrote on 2006-02-13 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Just found this one.

Getting used to the pieces takes awhile, but it was great fun even before I was able to recall what all the pieces do.


Sonja Musser wrote on 2005-09-17 UTCGood ★★★★
From fol. 82v of Alfonso X's _Book of Games_, rotating the board 90 degrees clockwise so that white is at bottom and a light-colored square is at bottom right, the opening array of grant acedrex is as follows: a-file rooks, b-file lions, c-file unicorns (rhinos), d-file giraffes, e-file crocodiles, f-file aancas, g-file kings, h-file crocs, i-file giraffes, j-file rhinos, k-file lions, l-file rooks. I believe Hans has the aanca and king reversed; it should be 'aanca on its color'.

George Duke wrote on 2005-02-27 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
'GHI,LargeCV': Eight piece-types. Gryphon is Arabian mythological 'bird so big it can lift elephants'. Lion is modern Trebuchet(0,3). Alfonso manuscript(1283) pre-dates Chaucer by about 100 yrs. and also widespread introduction of gunpowder into Europe from works of Arabs, who had learned it from the Chinese. Concurrently Alhazen's 'Optics' was translated into Latin and reached Europe in 1270. Gryphon starts one diagonal and can proceed Rookwise outwardly. Unicorn is Knight one move, then Bishop thereafter. Giraffe(1,4); Crocodile as Bishop; Rook; King mediaeval with initial leap option. Promotion to file piece as in Chaturanga. Chessically, Grande Acedrex precedes Timur's Great Chess(11x10), also called Tamerlane Chess(Timur the Lame). Timur's 'Giraffe' differs from G.A.'s Giraffe. In historical timeline, the three markers (gunpowder, Chaucer, and Timur's Chess) come within the century after invention of Grande Acedrex.

James Paluskievicz wrote on 2003-12-14 UTCGood ★★★★
My apologies, you are quite right. In the cantigas, both Kings are on the G-file, but the drawing on the website has them on the F-file. I mispoke when I mentioned that the kings needed to be on the H-file.

James Paluskievicz wrote on 2003-12-01 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
I have enjoyed the information on your website, however, I noticed that you placed both King on the G-file. From what I could see in the Cantigas, The Kings should go on the H-file instead. Otherwise, the information looked very good. Thank you for the information.

Charles Gilman wrote on 2003-03-23 UTCGood ★★★★
The promotion rule is an interesting one, and would make for variety as a minor variation to stanadrd Chess and any number of other variants (although it would not suit Shogi). I notice that each lion is limited to just a ninth of the squares - a smaller proportion than the elephants in Chaturanga! Furthermore lions of the same colour are confined to the same group of squares, like Xiang Xi elephants. Was the king's partner in this game really called 'Griffion', suggesting a trisyllabic pronunciation? The correct spellings for that creature are Griffin and Gryphon, the latter favoured by Lewis Carroll (whose characters also included a mangy-looking Lion and a dandyish Unicorn).

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