Can A King Put Another King Into Check In Chess?

can a king put another king in check in chess

A king is the most important piece in chess and must always be protected. Any piece on the board can put a king into check. A king is not allowed to put another king into check directly. However, a king can be used to aid another piece on the board in putting a king into check and causing a checkmate.

King Movement

The king is the most limited piece on the chessboard. It can only move one space at a time, either forward, backward, side to side, or diagonally. Therefore, a king can only capture opposing pieces one square away from it.

Due to its restricted movement, it is considered illegal for a king to put itself in the checkmate position. Since a king can only move one space in any direction, it would need to move one space away from the opposing king to put it in the checkmate position. However, this would place the attacking king in the checkmate position, making it an illegal move. Furthermore, a king may not take a piece that the opposing king defends because this would also put the attacking king in check.

Other Checkmate Options

Any other piece, including the queen, bishops, knights, rooks, or pawns, can put a king into check. The king can assist the other pieces in putting the opposing king in checkmate. This is often done when a king is moved to expose an attack for one of its other pieces. For example, if a king is in the diagonal path between the opposing king and its own bishop, the king may be moved out of the way, allowing its bishop to put the other king in check. However, the king must be moved to a space on the board that does not put itself in the checkmate position.

King Attack

Although kings can only move one space at a time, they can still attack and take out opposing pieces on the board. If an opposing piece is undefended, the king may move to take out that piece without putting itself in check. This can also be a useful strategy if the king is already in checkmate. By attacking an opposing piece, the king can move out of check and also take out a rival piece.


A king may not put the opposing king in the checkmate position. In certain situations, pieces are removed from the match so that only the two kings are left on each side of the board. If this happens, the game ends in a draw since neither king can take out the other.

A draw may also result from two other scenarios: when there are two kings and one knight left on the board or two kings and one bishop left on the board. In these cases, the knight and the bishop cannot cover enough space to force the opposing king into a corner and the checkmate position.


A king can’t put the other king in check. While a king may take out other opposing pieces on the board, it will never be able to take out the opposing king without exposing itself to checkmate. Therefore, the checkmate must be initiated by a piece other than the king for the match to move towards a legal conclusion.