King Held In Center:
Part of the Advanced Beginner's Chess Guide (Section 1) and the
Chess Strategies Guide (Section 3: Studying the Pieces)

King Held In Center


  • Point Count Chess: King Held In Center [-];
A King can be held in the Center, for example, by an adverse Queen or Bishop attacking down to the 1st Rank of the enemy's camp, crucially between the King and Rook, preventing the King from Castling to (relative) safety, as mocked-up in Diagram 1, below.
King Held In Center, Image 1, Advanced Beginners Chess Guide
Diagram 1: White's King held in the Center
by Black's light-Bishop.
As mentioned above, sometimes the King WANTS to stay in the center. But if he is FORCED to stay in the center, either by check which forces the King to move, or attack on the Rook forcing it to move (and therefore losing the right to castle on that side), or keeping a piece (Knight, Bishop, Rook, Queen) attacking on a square through which the King needs to move to castle (on the Queenside: the Q and QB home squares, and on the Kingside: the KB and KN squares), then subtract the point.
Further Reading

Point Count Chess (Horowitz & Mott-Smith, 1960)
  • The King in the Center, (p168)
  • The King in the Center SUMMARY, (p175)


Return to the Index of Disadvantages
Return to the Chess Strategies Guide,
Studying the Pieces (The Kings)
← Back to the Chess Glossary (King Held In Center)
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