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CQL-S 1.0 - Chess Query Language

Chess Query Language (CQL) was designed to allow researchers, authors, and players to search for games, problems, and studies that match specific themes (⇒ CQL Manual ).

Scidb is using CQL-S 1.0, an extended set of CQL, as a basis for all search functions. CQL-S is extended very comprehensive, to satisfy all demands of modern chess databases. CQL-S is a backwards-compatible enhancement, any standard CQL script should also be applicable in Scidb.

Note that some parts of this manual are taken from CQL Manual .


All search functions in Scidb are based on CQL-S. For the formulation of CQL queries the CQL editor is providing a comfortable, clear, and easy to use graphical user interface. Knowledge of the technical descriptions of CQL are not required in order to apply CQL-S. Also it is not necessary to understand the script language, solely the encouraged users will deal with CQL scripts. Merely the following quite short introductions are inevitable for the understanding of CQL:

But also for less technical interested parties it is enlightening to take at leat once a look into the documents The match list, The position list, and Examples, in order to obtain an overview about the power of CQL-S. Even the most complex search queries are feasible.

Technical descriptions

The technical descriptions are the basis for a deeper understanding of CQL-S. This is also the foundation for understanding, and possibly writing, CQL scripts. Also for the design of complex search queries a deeper understanding is essential.

annotation The technichal description is not a precondition for the usage of the search functions in Scidb.

CQL files

Scidb is writing CQL-S scripts with file suffix .cqls. If a CQL-S script is compliant to standard CQL (which is often the case) this script is exportable to a CQL file with suffix .cql. Scidb is able to import any .cql script, written by a third-party product.

For a more detailed description of the file format see File format.