- an act or instance of maneuvering the opponent's king into a check from which it cannot escape, thus bringing the game to a victorious conclusion.
- the position of the pieces when a king is checkmated.
verb (used with object), check·mat·ed, check·mat·ing.
Origin of checkmate
Examples from the Web for checkmate
Contemporary Examples of checkmate
Historical Examples of checkmate
She got their whole plan and went along to try to checkmate them.Poisoned Air
Sterner St. Paul Meek
He moved about the board with an assumption that said, I can checkmate you when I will!Barrington
Charles James Lever
I can see that he is artfully intriguing for Mr. Wharton's favor, but I must checkmate him.The Cash Boy
Horatio Alger Jr.
It was the cruellest thing to checkmate him after so much labour, she considered.A Pair of Blue Eyes
Therefore, it is imperative that we know Grant's plans so that we can checkmate them.The Lost Despatch
Natalie Sumner Lincoln
- the winning position in which an opponent's king is under attack and unable to escape
- the move by which this position is achieved
Word Origin for checkmate
mid-14c., from Old French eschec mat (Modern French échec et mat), which (with Spanish jaque y mate, Italian scacco-matto) is from Arabic shah mat "the king died" (see check (n.1)), which according to Barnhart is a misinterpretation of Persian mat "be astonished" as mata "to die," mat "he is dead." Hence Persian shah mat, if it is the ultimate source of the word, would be literally "the king is left helpless, the king is stumped."
late 14c.; see checkmate (n.). Related: Checkmated; checkmating.