An adjournment is where a chess game is “adjourned” (paused) until it is to be “resumed” the next day or on a later date. The game re-starts from its half-finished position. (Note that “adjournment” is different from “adjudication” or “adjust”.)
The procedures were quite intricate. One player would write a move on a scoresheet and then hide it in an envelope (the “sealed move”). Both players were then free to go off to their rooms and spend the entirety of the night analysing all of the possible variations from the adjourned position, including with all their friends (called “seconds”) and with as many computers as they liked. One player had the advantage that they knew the sealed move, so they didn’t waste time analysing other moves. But the other player had the advantage that they had the first move to play after the adjournment resumed.
An adjournment of a chess game should not be confused with an adjudication. An adjudication is where an official declares a win, loss, or draw. The game is over for adjudication, but not for adjournment.
Don’t Worry About It!
Unsurprisingly, adjournment really does not occur in any level of chess any more. Chess computers are just far too good these days. The people who can tell you about games that they had with chess adjournments are also the ones who can bore you with stories about TVs without remote controls and telephones that had a curly cord and a rotary dial.
Related Chess Rules Topics
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