Each player has two knights, positioned on the squares next to the rooks. They are the ancient warhorses of chaturanga transformed into medieval knights, the universally recognized symbols of feudal chivalry. For knights of chivalry, however, they are remarkably devious. The knight is the only piece on the board that is always allowed to jump over occupied squares. Its movement is composed of two separate steps. First it makes one step of a single square in any direction along a rank or file. Then, still moving away from the square of departure, it makes a second step of a single square on a diagonal. It can do this even if it is totally surrounded by other pieces—whether friendly or hostile—and captures in exactly the same way as it moves.
Because of its unusual movement, a sudden knight: attack often causes havoc in the enemy camp. The knights' range is severely limited at the edge of the board, and they are much more effective deployed toward the center. Springer, their German name, is the most suggestive of their character. In French they are called cavaliers-, in Italian cavalloir, and in Spanish caballos. In contrast with the bishop, when you make a move with the knight, it always finishes on a different-color square from its starting square. If a knight is on white, it must: move to black, and vice versa.
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