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International Chess Day

July 20

International Chess Day - July 20

International Chess Day is a holiday established by the United Nations. Every year on July 20, fans of this intellectual game honor their hobby. This tradition has been around for more than half a century, and every year the number of people joining the holiday is increasing.

The History

Until now, the origin of chess is a subject of controversy. Scholars are not even able to come to a consensus on the country where chess originated. Someone thinks that this is India, there are also versions about China and Central Asia. According to one version, chess is one of the varieties of the Chaturanga military game, common in India. The predecessor of chess has several key nuances similar to the modern version of the game: the presence of different pieces with different functions, the victory was recognized by the position on the field of one piece. A variation of the Chaturangi game spread to Europe, making its way through Persia, Byzantium, and also the Arabian Empire.

Interesting Facts

  • One of the reasons why chess pieces do not have human or animal features is the influence of Islam. This religion forbids making any statues and figures depicting people or animals.
  • Already in the 10th century, chess from the Arabian Empire spread to Africa, Spain and Sicily. Thanks to the Vikings, the game ended up in England and Iceland.
  • One of the reasons for the popularity of chess is that they were associated with wealth, high intelligence, and power.
  • The modern version of chess was proposed by a resident of England, who used the traditional field, lined with squares.
  • July 20 is the founding day of FIDE – the International Chess Federation.

How to celebrate

Join a chess club, there are a huge number of them in the country – in schools, gymnasiums, community centers, sports and entertainment centers, there are also thematic online groups. Learn to play – it stimulates the brain, you find new friends, learn to calculate each situation a few steps ahead. Did you know that there are many films on the theme of chess in world cinema? Arrange a movie night dedicated to this intellectual game.

When is International Chess Day celebrated in 2022?

International Chess Day is observed on July 20 each year.


Weekday Month Day Year
Wednesday July 20 2022
Thursday July 20 2023
Saturday July 20 2024
Sunday July 20 2025
Monday July 20 2026


July 20
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