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Acedrex de los Cuatros Tiempos DLP Game   

Period Medieval

Region Southern Europe, Western Europe

Category Board, War, Replacement, Checkmate, Chess


Acedrex de los Cuatros Tiempos is a four-player game derived from Chess. It was described in Alofonso X of Castile's Libro de los Juegos. The four players are conceptualized as playing the four seasons, eating away at the other seasons.


Played on an 8x8 checkered board, with large diagonals drawn on the inner square 4x4 spaces. Four players, seated, from top left, anti-clockwise: red, black, white, green. Each player has four pawns, a knight, a fil, a rook, and a king. The kings begin in the corner space, with the knight to the adjacent square in the row with the king, the rook in the square in the column adjacent to the king, and the fil in the remaining 2x2 square in the corner. The pawns are placed on the orthogonally adjacent squares to this formation. Pieces move as follows: King: One square in any direction. Knight: As a knight in Chess. Rook: Orthogonally any number of spaces. Fil: moves diagonally two spaces, jumping over any piece in the intervening square. Pawns: move forward along the direction of their nearest edge, but capture diagonally forward. Upon reaching the opposite edge of the board, pawns are immediately promoted to "Fers," which moves diagonally one space in any direction. Pieces are taken by moving onto a space occupied by an enemy piece. Kings cannot be in check at the end of their turn, if this is not possible the king is checkmated and that player loses. Each player makes an opening bet. Any time a player loses a piece or their king is placed in check, they must pay into the pot. When a player's king is checkmated, they must pay into the pot for their remaining pieces, and all their pieces are removed from the board. Each player may capture only the pieces of the player to their right. As players are eliminated, the targeted player is changed accordingly.

Libro de los Juegos 87-89.

Ludeme Description

Acedrex de los Cuatros Tiempos.lud


Browse all concepts for Acedrex de los Cuatros Tiempos here.


Murray 1913: 348-349.

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Golladay, S. M. n.d. Alfonso X’s Book of Games. Translated by Sonja Musser Golladay.

Murray, H. J. R. 1913. A History of Chess. London: Oxford University Press.

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