Piececlopedia: Silver General

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The Piececlopedia is intended as a scholarly reference concerning the history and naming conventions of pieces used in Chess variants. But it is not a set of standards concerning what you must call pieces in newly invented games.

Piececlopedia: Silver General

Historical notes

The Silver General, or Ginsho is a piece from Shogi, Japanese Chess. It also appears in many variants of Shogi. In Makruk (Thai Chess) it appears as the replacement of the Bishop, under the name Elephant.


The Silver General can move one square, either diagonally or straigt forward, i.e., it can move to any square a king can move to, except to the left, right or straight backwards, and hence has usually five squares it can go to.

Movement diagram

In the diagram below, the Silver general can move to all the squares marked with a black circle.


Although mate positions are possible with a Silver General and its King, these cannot be forced, so that the Silver General should be considered a minor piece. It only needs very little assistence to force checkmate on a bare King, though; a Ferz is already enough. (Something very relevant for Makruk.) You can practice this here.


Silver general symbol

Silver general piece

Written by Hans Bodlaender. Updated by H.G.Muller.
WWW page created: 8 Aug 2000. Last modified on: 7 Feb 2023.