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Sittuyin (Sitturin, Sitbuyin, Chedreen, Chit-tha-reen)

Period(s)

Modern

Region(s)

Southeastern Asia

Description

Sittuyin is a game derived from Indian Chaturanga. It differs from similar games in that it begins with placement phase, in which pieces are placed on the board as the players see fit. In the nineteenth and early twentieth century, it was most frequently played by the elderly.

Rules

8x8 board, with diagonals drawn in the 2x2 squares in each corner, as well as the diagonals of the entire board. Each player has a complement of pieces, with special moves as follows: Min-gyi(x1, "Great King"): moves one space in any direction; Sit-ké (x1, "Lieutenant-General): moves on space diagonally; Sin (x2, "Elephant"): moves one space diagonally or orthogonally forward; Myin (x2, "Horse"): moves as a Chess knight; Yattah (x2, "Chariot"): moves orthogonally any distance; Nè (x8): moves one space orthogonally forward or one space forward diagonally to capture. Promotes to Sit-kè on the next turn after moving to a space with a diagonal. At the beginning of the game, the board is laid out with the four of the Nè in the left half of the third third row of squares, and four in the right half of the fourth row of squares. Players alternate turns placing the remaining pieces. The Min-gyi are placed in the second space from the right in the second row, and a Sin must be placed next to it. If a player wishes to place one of their pieces in a spot occupied by a Nè, they may do so and place the Nè elsewhere behind the rows of Nè. When all of the pieces are placed, players may continue alternating turns rearranging pieces, one at a time, as they see fit. When one player is satisfied with their pieces, they move a Nè forward and the rearrangement phase ends. Players alternate turns moving their pieces according to their assigned movements. Pieces are captured when an player's piece lands on a space occupied by an opponent's piece. The Min-gyi is I ncheck when it can be taken on the opponent's next turn; it must not remain in check at the end of the player's subsequent turn. The goal is to checkmate the Min-gyi, where it cannot move out of check. A move which causes a stalemate is not allowed.

Murray 1913: 111-113.

Origin

Myanmar

Reference

Murray 1913: 109-113.

Evidence Map

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Sources

Cox, H. 1803. "Account of the Burmha Game of Chess." Asiatic Researches 7: 491-493.

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

Symes, M. 1800. Account of an Embassy to the Kingdom of Ava, Sent by the Governor-General of India, in the Year 1795. Reprinted in SOAS Bulletin 2006 4(1): 59-208.

Identifiers

DLP.Game.280

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