The movements are specific to every type of piece, creating a reflection of the real society in which combinations of roles are leading to the defeat of the enemy. Checkmate is a phonetic variant of the ancient Persian Shah Mat meaning King is lost.
Long before the rules of chess are frozen, the Dominicans are interested in its social and moral significance. Around 1300, Jacopo da Cessole wrote a short treatise significantly entitled Liber de moribus hominum et officiis nobilium ac popularium super ludo scacchorum (book of manners of men and noble roles in relation to the popular game of chess). The author is more concerned in his sermon that in the game itself which is described only in the last chapter.
Jacopo's book is a success and translations appear early. When printers are seeking to vary the topics to expand their customer base, editions of this work are performed almost simultaneously in several European cities in 1473 and 1474. The Game and Playe of Chesse is perhaps the first printed book in English by Caxton after he installed his printing press in England.
On July 15 in London, Christie's sells a recently discovered copy of the highly rare first Latin edition of Jacopo's book, printed in 1474 in Utrecht, lot 81 estimated £ 50K.