Chaturanga

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Chaturanga

 

an ancient table game; one of the oldest forerunners of chess. Chaturanga originated in India in about the fifth century. According to Indian and Arabic sources, it was a four-handed game in which each player had a set of pieces of four types: elephants, horses, chariots, and foot soldiers. The object of the game was to take the opponents’ pieces. The moves were made alternately, and the number of moves was determined by throwing a die. The exact rules of chaturanga are not known. The game became popular in Iran and Middle Asia and then in the Arab Caliphate. It eventually evolved as the game called in Arabic shatranj and in Persian chatrang, a two-handed game with rules similar in part to those of modern chess and without the use of the die.

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