Bishop-Knight Simple Checkmate

Checkmating with a Bishop & a Knight along with the King against a lone opposing King is a basic simple checkmate. However, in the words of Fred Reinfeld, “This type of checkmate is really difficult and calls for considerable patience and methodical maneuvering. Not only must the lone King be driven into a corner; he must be hounded into a corner which is of the same color as those of the squares upon which the Bishop moves.” The Complete Chess Player, by Fred Reinfeld, at page 33 [full book reference in the Recommended Readings section]. Developing the mating pattern and mating net requires a considerable number of moves. There are two important principles that the player must apply to successfully develop the mating pattern and force the mating net on the opposing King.

  • First, in developing the mating pattern the player’s King must be employed to provide defense for the player’s Knight and Bishop and assist in hounding the opposing King into the corner, and block the opposing King from fleeing the corner checkmate square.
  • Second, the player must use movements which block the opposing King from fleeing back toward the center of the chessboard, and force him into a corner square.

The first diagram below shows an example of this mating net using the four-square square anatomy of mate pattern. The second diagram shows an example of a position from which this mating pattern and mating net is then developed in the text explanation following the diagrams to show the reader how a player works the player’s Bishop, Knight, & King in tandem in a pattern designed to trap and entomb the opposing King in a corner square to effectuate the mating net. [Taken from The Complete Chess Player, by Fred Reinfeld, at pages 33-34 (full book reference in the Recommended Readings section)].


Diagram B-N-1
Bishop-Knight Simple Checkmate
Mating Net
empty Diagram B-N-2
Example for Developing
Mating Pattern & Mating Net