Which Chess Piece can only Move Diagonally?

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There are six distinct chess pieces, and only four of them can move diagonally. This makes diagonal moves very common in the game of chess since the majority of pieces can move in this manner.
The four chess pieces that are allowed to move diagonally are the bishop, king, queen, and pawn.

The pawn can only move diagonally when it attacks another piece, the king, queen, and the bishop on the other hand can all move diagonally in any direction even when attacking, leaving the pawn as the odd one out in the list of diagonal moving pieces.

Among these four pieces, only the Queen and Bishop can move any length diagonally, provided that there is no piece in their way. Only the knight can jump over a piece, so no piece can stand in its way.
Let’s take a look at the four diagonally moving pieces individually.

So which chess piece can only move diagonally? The answer is__ the Bishop.


The Bishop

A dark-squared bishop


The first chess piece people think about when talking about diagonal movement is the bishop. it is one of the only two chess pieces that may move any number of unoccupied squares in any diagonal direction. This ability allows it to move along an adjacent diagonal line.

The diagonal movement is what defines bishops. They cannot do anything else. The bishop is the only chess piece that moves only diagonally.
The rules of chess state that the bishop may move any number of unoccupied squares in any diagonal direction. It also attacks other pieces on its diagonal.

After attacking, the bishop must take the position of the chess piece they captured.
The game of chess always starts with two bishops. There is always one bishop that moves on the white squares, and another bishop that moves on the black squares. Their ability to cover a large chunk of the chessboard makes the bishop a great tool for a player that likes open play and tactics.

The King

Which chess piece can only move diagonally
The King can move to any surrounding square

The King is the most important piece on the chessboard, it moves one square in any direction, which means it can also move diagonally.

Although the king can move in any direction, it has its restrictions. The king cannot move onto a square that is currently under attack (in control) by an opponent’s piece, the king isn’t allowed to check or checkmate itself. It needs the support of other pieces.

Just like any other chess piece, a king cannot move to a square that is currently occupied by pieces of the same color.
If the king moves before castling, the special chess move is no longer allowed. This follows from the four rules of castling.

The king is the most important chess piece but when it comes to walking across the board, it can be as slow as a tortoise, but he is allowed to move in any direction. unlike the bishop, the king can move diagonally, horizontally, and vertically.
Another chess piece that can move diagonally, vertically, and horizontally is the Queen.

The Queen

The Queen

The Queen can move across any directional line, which includes? Yeah, you guessed right! diagonally.
The queen is the master of movement in chess. It is capable of moving in any direction, the queen can swiftly move across the board diagonally, horizontally, as well as vertically. The diagram above shows the squares she is allowed to move on in a single turn.
The queen moves and attacks like the combination of two chess pieces, the bishop and rook (the rook moves vertically and horizontally).
A chess piece that also moves vertically and diagonally but not horizontally is the pawn.


The Pawn

The white pawn can capture black pawn diagonally


Pawns can attack diagonally, but only in a forward direction, they never move backward.
The pawn is the odd one out among the diagonally moving chess pieces. A pawn can move only forward in a vertical direction, usually one square per turn, but can move two steps forward in its first move.

Its diagonal movement happens when it attacks an opponent’s piece. Just as its ordinary movement, a pawn can only attack forward diagonally, the rules of chess do not allow a pawn to move or attack backward.

The pawn has another special way it can move diagonally, it is called “promotion”. it requires the pawn’s movement to the opposite end of the board, then as the name implies, it promotes to any piece of choice, promoting to bishop or queen will amount to diagonal movement. So, therefore, the pawn can move diagonally by promoting into a diagonally moving piece.

The pawn on e7 just moved to e5, white can capture the e5 pawn with en passant

The pawn can also move diagonally through a move that is called en passant. The en passant occurs when a pawn attacks past an opponent’s pawn that made the two-step’s first move. This is usually played so that you don’t attack the pawn but the rules of chess allow en passant, which makes you capture their pawn diagonally. This is a special move of pawns.

Check out Can Pawns Move Backwards In Chess?: Understanding The Chess Pieces

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