Queening a pawn refers to “pawn promotion” which is where a pawn becomes a Queen once it reaches the 8th rank. On reaching the other side of the board, right in enemy territory, it becomes a Queen. The main things about queening a pawn are:
Multiple Queens are Great!
You are allowed to have more than one Queen. You are not limited to the pieces that have been removed from the board. Typically, an upside-down Rook is used to represent a second Queen, or you can borrow another Queen from another set in a tournament.
Pawn Promotion Captures
Pawn capture moves can be a pawn promotion too. This means that you take your pawn, it captures an enemy piece (on the 8th rank), and then also turns into a Queen. What a great move to make!
Note that a pawn can become other pieces than a Queen. This is called “underpromotion”. But usually you’d want the Queen, as it’s the most powerful piece.
You can promote your pawn to a Knight, Bishop, or Rook. But not to a King, and it cannot stay as a Pawn.
These are the rules for normal chess games. Rules of pawn promotion may differ in chess variants such as “bughouse” or “giveaway chess”.
Advanced Pointers about Queening a Pawn
Some of the advanced aspects of pawn promotion to Queens (in normal chess) include:
A “passed pawn” can run up to the other side of the board in only 5 moves. It can then become a Queen on reaching the furthest edge of the board.
Related Chess Rules Topics
Read more about these related chess rules, chess puzzles, and other chess tactics and strategies: