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Evidence for Dum Blas

1 pieces of evidence found.

Id DLP.Evidence.2233
Type Ethnography
Location 3° 4'19.51"N, 101°31'6.22"E
Date 1904-01-01 - 1904-12-31
Rules 10x10 board, with red and white checkeres squares. Twenty pieces per player, which are arranged on the first four ranks closest to the player. Pieces move diagonally one space forward. Pieces may capture an opponent's piece by hopping over it diagonally to an empty adjacent square immediately on the other side of it. Pieces cannot capture in a backwards direction. The maximum number of pieces must be captured. If a player does not capture the maximum number of pieces, the other player may huff this piece, removing it from play. When a piece reaches the opposite edge of the board from where it started, it is promoted to king. Kings may move any distance diagonally, in a forward or backward direction. The player who captures all of their opponent's pieces wins.
Content "Our reader will be well acquainted with the name of Mr. H. O. Robinson, as one of our cleverest problemists. The gentleman is an Executive Engineer for the Civil Service, and is stationed at Selangor in the British East Indies. He writes to an English contemporary an exceeding interesting account of Malay Draughts. The Malays, he says, play draughts on a board of 100 squares with 10 pieces a side. I believe I have seen a 144-square board in the state of Pahang when I was stationed there seven years ago, but the 100-square board is the one usually used by the natives. The game is known as Dum—it would be curious if the derivation of the word is akin to that of Dambrod—and the Malay is not at all particular what he makes use of for the pieces; stones, shells, fish bones, or anything that is handy. I have in my collection a set of circular fish bones, one set of men coloured red and the other the natural white. The boards are always in red and white squares; I have never seen a black and white one. The boards and men are roughly made as a rule; a....set being an unknown thing. The moves are about the same as Polish Draughts. I don't think there is any hard and fast rule about black or white moving first. The men move diagonally; take forwards but not backwards; the King moves one or more squares as in the Polish game. When there is more than one way of capturing, the greater number of pieces en pris must be taken; this rule applies to both men and kings...In a subsequent communication he wrote: In my notes on Malay Draughts sent to you a few days ago I omitted one or two rather important points. In addition to the "Main Dam" The game is also known as "Dum Blas" (blas signifies the huff) and "Dum papan" (papan means board). The player has the power to huff or compel the take, but not to let the piece remain on the board. It is quite immaterial as to whether the double corner is on the right or left. When playing with a native I have always insisted on the board being played according to our style of play, and have never had any objection raised to it. I my previous letter I stated that either black or white may move first; this is correct as concerns the first game played; in the succeeding games the winner of the previous game played moves first. The reason for this extraordinary rule is that it gives the loser a chance of imitating the moves of the better player." Rbinson 1904.
Confidence 100
Source Robinson, H. O. 1904. Letter to the Norwich Mercury. Norwich Mercury, 27 January 1904, 7.

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