Article 1: The nature and objectives of the game of chess

1.1        

The game of chess is played between two opponents who move their pieces alternately on a square board called a ‘chessboard’. The player with the white pieces commences the game. A player is said to ‘have the move’, when his opponent’s move has been ‘made’. (See Article 6.7)

1.2        

The objective of each player is to place the opponent’s king ‘under attack’ in such a way that the opponent has no legal move. The player who achieves this goal is said to have ‘checkmated’ the opponent’s king and to have won the game. Leaving one’s own king under attack, exposing one’s own king to attack and also ’capturing’ the opponent’s king are not allowed. The opponent whose king has been checkmated has lost the game.

1.3     

If the position is such that neither player can possibly checkmate, the game is drawn.

Note:  This is an excerpt from the FIDE Handbook. For actual handbook click here