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  1. 23 Jul '09 20:13
    Hi Fans,

    Having read many chess books (and written written one) I have tried to find a general consensus for the meaning of "tabiya/tabiyah/tabia."

    After due consideration I think that, as Emanuel Lasker pointed out - chess is a fight. I believe, therefore, that tabiyas are akin to battle positions. These can be either standard in nature, as in positions that are the result of regularly visited opening sequences or may be personal, whereby a player attempts to reach his own preferential position(s)or tabiya(s).

    Often such tabiyas are seminal and full of tactical/positional nuances as in the Sicilian Dragon, for example.

    I would also like to suggest that there exist "ideal" tabiyas such as optimum positions to aim for in, say, pawn endings (as well as in openings).

    Thus, in sum, there may be Standard, Personal and/or Ideal tabiyas - and these are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

    I value your reply at my email address below or on this site.

    Paul Wiseman (aka Fangoon aka The Count of Ten).

  2. 24 Jul '09 08:44 / 1 edit
    I came across the term Tabiya in Timothy Taylors book on beating the Kings Indian. In the
    context it seemed to mean the key position reached after the last of a series of standard opening
    moves. A point from which a player has a choice of moves of roughly equal value or from where
    divergent strategies can be adopted. The sentences was something like: "..and here we come to
    the basic tabiya of the..."

    You could describe it as the point where the real battle begins.
  3. Standard member atticus2
    Frustrate the Bad
    24 Jul '09 12:29
    Yes, this is right, but it's also more complex too.

    Take the Closed Ruy Lopez for example. The classical tabiya is the position arising after 9. h3. The moves to reach this position have been rattled off a million times, from schoolkids to GMs. But now there is a parting of the ways: the position is balanced but Black must choose from several plausible moves. Each plausible move leads in due course to another tabiya which defines the characteristics of the variation chosen at move 9.

    One short-hand way of understanding tabiya is to treat it as the point where 'automatic' moves run out, and a real choice must be made. That may lead to a second series of 'automatic' moves and a secondary tabiya
  4. 14 Aug '09 19:25
    I have never seen the term tabiya applied to the endgame. Also, I don't think you can have a personal tabiya. Just because you play 1 c4 2 Nc3 3 g3 4 Bg2 does not mean you can say you are playing an Accelerated Dragon, for example. However, I like the way you are stretching the usage of the word tabiya.
    Tabiya was originally used in Arab Chess to refer to slow developing opening formations because the pawns moved one square at a time. It would take many moves to set up a symmetrical mujannah: 1 c3 c6 2 c4 c5 3 f3 f6 4 f4 f5 5 Nc3 Nc6 6 Nf3 Nf6.
    Perhaps tabiya could be defined as any stem from which at least 20 games have been played.
  5. Standard member caissad4
    Child of the Novelty
    15 Aug '09 04:10
    Okay, here is the origin of tabia.
    A thousand years ago chess in India started with a duplicate set of moves being made:
    White; pf3,pg3,pe3,Bg2,Kf2,Ne2 and then with a one move jump the king moves to g1 and the rook to f1.
    Blacks' moves are a mirror of White's.
    It is the origin of the Kings' Indian Defence and Kings Indian Attack.
    When I was young my sister had a boyfriend from India who was a very strong player and this was what he explained to me.