Double Check: Part of the Check to Checkmate Guide

Chess Endgame Guide
Check Guide
[Double Check]

Chess Endgame Guide - Double CheckWhen a King is caught by a Double Check, it is being directly attacked from two different, enemy pieces, at the same time.

In most situations, a King will be Checked by a single piece, from somewhere on the board.

The image (right) shows Black's King being Doubled Checked. White's Bd5+ move from f3 to uncover another attack on the King by Rf1+.

The Notation Symbol for a Double Check is '++' two pluses, which is added to the end of the notation of the respective Pawn or Piece that made the move.

For example, Bg7++ would indicate that a Bishop has moved to the g7 square, putting the enemy King in "Check". What the notation fails to tell you is where the other check is coming from, so you need to keep your eyes peeled as to what's happening across the entire chessboard.

A King is most vulnerable, from this double attack, during the latter stages of a game, when there's less all-round protection.

You can watch a few examples, below ...

Double Check, Example 1

At the moment, the Black King isn't in Check, but IS in big trouble, with little protection and supporting pieces - Rook and Knight - being in poor positions for dealing with any threats to their King.

Notice the position of White's Rook and Bishop ...

You'll see Black's King is on the same White coloured squares as White's Bishop.

By moving from f3 to d5, not only does White's Bishop place Black's King in Check, but it uncovers direct line of sight for White's Rook to also Check Black's King.

Incidentally, from this one move you also see a:
  • Discovered Check, made by White's Bishop moving to reveal White's Rook attacking Black's King.

  • Fork Attack, made by White's Bishop moving to d5, which attacks three pieces at the same time: Black's Knight, Rook, and King.

Double Check, Example 2

In this example, White's Rook is currently covering the threat to Black's King, by the White Bishop at g3 ...

But, as soon as White's Rook moves up to e8, the Double Check is on, by both the Bishop and Rook.

And yes, once again, this is a Discovered Check.

Double Check, Example 3

In our third example, White's Knight is shielding Black's King from attack by White's Queen ...

But, as soon as White's Knight moves to d5 - although it could equally have been h5 - both it and the White Queen are simultaneously Checking Black's King.

From this Double Check article, Return to the Check Guide Index
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