Can you have two Queens in Chess?

Yes, you can have two queens in chess if you promote one or more of your pawn(s) to queen(s) upon reaching the 8th rank with white pieces or 1st rank with the black pieces.

The Initial Setup

At the start of a chess game, each player begins with one queen. This means that there are initially two queens on the board, one for each player. However, the possibility of having two queens for a single player arises later in the game under specific circumstances like promotion to queen.

What is Promotion to Queen?

In chess, pawns have the unique ability to be promoted to any other piece when they reach the opponent’s side of the board.

Typically, players choose to promote their pawns to queens because of their exceptional power and range of movement.

In some circumstances, promoting to other pieces is important. Check out the videos below to understand why:

Also check these 5 Insane Bishop Under promotion games.
Powerful under promotion tactic
When Daniel Naroditsky defeated Alireza firouzja by under promotion
Under promotions that made chess famous

The Potential for Multiple Queens

Considering that each player has eight pawns at the beginning of the game, there is the potential for a significant increase in the number of queens on the board.

In theory, it is possible for a player to promote all eight of their pawns to queens, resulting in a total of nine queens but this happens only once in a blue moon.

On the other hand, both mathematically and practically it is impossible to promote all 16 pawns to queens.

Why Too Many Queens on the Board is Practically Impossible?

While it is technically possible to have multiple queens on the board, the chances of promoting more than one or two pawns to queens in a game is rare and in most cases impossible.

Promoting a pawn requires strategic positioning, as well as favorable circumstances that allow the pawn to safely advance to the 8th rank.

Rare Occurrences

In the vast majority of chess games, players rarely promote more than one pawn to a queen. It is considered a rare occurrence to have more than a couple of queens on the board at any given time.

Even experienced players often go through games without promoting a single pawn to a queen.

Personal Experience

Speaking from personal experience, I have played more than 26000 games on and there rarely was a situation where I needed or had the opportunity to promote multiple pawns to queens.

In fact, the most I have promoted in a single game is five pawns.

This unusual circumstance arose when my opponent stubbornly refused to resign, and I managed to create a blockade using one queen while promoting four additional pawns to queens.


While it is possible to have two queens in chess, it generally occurs in rare and specific circumstances.

The initial setup of the game provides each player with one queen, but the potential for multiple queens arises when pawns are promoted to queens upon reaching the opponent’s 8th rank.

However, the odds of promoting more than one or two pawns to queens are slim in a typical game.

Nonetheless, the prospect of having multiple queens on the board adds an extra layer of complexity and excitement to the game of chess.

So, next time you play, keep an eye out for the possibility of two queens reigning supreme on the chessboard!

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