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Card Games Glossary


Above the Line. Bridge. The place on the score sheet where premium points are scored.
Adversary. Any opponent; someone playing against the highest bidder.
Advertise. Poker. Make a bluff with the intention of being caught, so that future bets or raises will more likely be called.
Against. Skat. See Without.
Age. 1) See First Hand. 2) Poker. The right to bet last after the draw
Alone. Euchre family. A bid to play without the help of a partner.
Alternate Straight. See Skip Straight.
Anchor. Duplicate Bridge. In pivot or Progressive play, the player who retains his seat throughout the contest.
Announce. 1) Name a trump suit. 2) Show melds. 3) Predict a Schneider or Schwarz. (See also, Schneider or Schwarz.)
Ante. 1) A bet made before the deal or before drawing cards. 2) Contribution, usually cash or chips, to a pot which, at the start, belongs equally to all players.
Ask. 1) Whist. Signal one's partner to lead trumps. 2) Skat family. Inquiry by the "First hand" whether the next hand wishes to compete in the bidding.
Assist. Euchre. Order one's partner to take up trump.
Auction. An initial period of bidding before cards are played.
Authorized Opponent. Bridge. One solely entitled to assess a penalty.
Available Card. Solitaire. A card that is not blocked and may be transferred elsewhere in the layout.
Avondale Schedule. The recommended table for scoring of the game Five Hundred.


Back Door. Bezique. A sequence in a plain suit.
Back Hand. The top-ranking 5-card hand in Pai-Gow or Pusoy.
Back In. Poker. Come into the betting after checking
Back to Back. Poker. The hole card and first upcard when they are a pair.
Bait. 1) Rummy family. A discard intended to influence an opponent's later discard. 2) See Bete.
Balanced Hand. A hand with no void, singleton, or very long suit. (See also Void; Singleton.)
Balking Cards. Cribbage. Cards unlikely to produce a score, which are given to the opponent's crib.
Banco. Chemin-de-fer. A bet equal to the entire bank
Bank. The Casino or house in a gambling game such as Black Jack or Chemin de Fer; the dealer in a gambling game.
Banker. 1) Dealer against whom all others bet. 2) Poker. The player who keeps the supply of chips.
Barred. Stopped from bidding by a legal penalty.
Base. Canasta. The number of natural cards required in a Canasta.
Basto, or Basta. The queen of spades.
Bate. See Bete.
Beg. All Fours. See A proposal by the player on the dealer's left to the dealer that three additional cards be dealt to each hand and that a new card be turned up for trump.
Bela, or Bella. Klaberjass. See The king and queen of trumps.
Below the Line. Bridge. See The place on the score sheet where the trick score is entered.
Best. Highest-ranking.
Best Bower. The joker, when it is the highest trump, as in Five Hundred.
Bet Blind. Bet without looking at the hand.
Bete (pronounced bate). 1) Beaten. 2) A forfeit paid by a loser or by a transgressor of a rule of correct procedure.
Bet the Pot. Bet as many chips as there are in the pot at the moment.
Betting Interval. Poker. Period in which each player may bet or drop out.
Bicycle. Poker. The lowest hand in Lowball.
Bid. An offer to contract to win a certain number of tricks or points in play; to make a bid.
Bidder. 1) Any player who makes a bid. 2) The player who makes the highest bid and assumes the contract.
Bid Over. Overcall; bid higher than the last previous bid.
Big Cassino. Cassino. The ten of diamonds.
Big Dog. Poker. A hand consisting of ace-high and nine-low but no pair.
Big Joker. The higher of the two jokers, which, in a game with trumps, ranks as the highest trump.
Big Tiger. Poker. A hand consisting of king-high and eight-low but no pair.
Blackjack. Black Jack. An ace and any ten-card.
Black Lady. The queen of spades, also called the Black Maria.
Blackwood Convention. Contract Bridge. A system of cue-bidding to reach slams, invented by Easley Blackwood.
Blank. 1) Holding no cards of (a suit); void. 2) To discard all cards of a suit or all low cards from a card.
Blaze. Poker. A hand composed entirely of face cards.
Blind. 1) A compulsory bet or ante made before the cards are dealt. 2) The widow, as in Skat. (See also Ante; Widow.)
Blind Lead. A card led made before certain cards are disclosed.
Blitz. See Shutout.
Block. A situation in which the player in turn is unable to play, or no player is able to play.
Blocking a Suit. Playing a card so that a partner with the longer of two partnership holdings in a suit cannot obtain the lead in that suit.
Blue Peter. Whist. The signal for a trump lead.
Bluff. Poker. A bet on a hand not believed to be the best.
Board. 1) Stud Poker. The exposed cards of all active players. 2) A deal in Duplicate Bridge.
Bobtail. Poker. A Four Flush or Double-Ended Straight, (Which see).
Bonus. A score given for holding certain cards or completing a high contract.
Booby Prize. A prize for the lowest score.
Booby Table. In progressive play, the table of highest number, to which losers move from table No. 1) (See also Progression.)
Boodle Card. Stops family. Extra cards placed in a layout on which bets are laid.
Book. Whist family. The number of tricks (usually six) that a side must win before it can score by winning subsequent tricks; usually, six tricks.
Bower. See Left Bower, Right Bower.
Box. 1) Gin Rummy. The score for winning a deal. 2) An apparatus from which cards are dealt, as in Faro. Also known as a shoe, which see.
Break. 1) To divide in a specified way, such as the cards or a particular suit held by one's opponents. 2) Rummy. The point at which the stock contains too few cards for everyone to have another draw. 3) Rummy. The act of making the first meld.
Break Contract. Spades. To take fewer than the number of tricks contracted for.
Breaks. Distribution of the adverse cards between the two hands.
Bridge. Euchre. A score of 4 when one's opponents have not more than 2 tricks.
Brisque. Bezique. Any ace or ten.
Buck. Poker. A token used as a reminder of the order of precedence in dealing, exercising any privilege or duty, etc.
Buck the Tiger. Faro.Play against the bank.
Bug. Poker. The joker, when it may be used only as an ace or as a wild card in filling a flush. A straight, or a low hand.
Build. 1) Cassino. Combine two or more cards to be taken in later. 2) Solitaire. Transfer cards among the tableau or layout.
Bull. Ace. Also called bullet.
Bunch. 1) Abandon the deal; gather cards preparatory to shuffling. 2) Auction Pitch. An offer to play a contract of 2 or to have a new deal, at the opponent's option.
Burn a Card. Expose and bury a card, or place it on the bottom of the pack.
Bury a Card. 1) Place a card in the middle of the pack or among the discards, so that it cannot be readily located. 2) Pinochle. Lay aside for future counting.
Business Double. Bridge. A double made for the purpose of exacting increased penalties.
Bust. 1) A hand devoid of trick-taking possibilities. 2) Black Jack. A hand totaling more than 21.
Buy. Draw from the widow or stock; cards so received.
Buy-in. See Stack (2).
By Me. A declaration meaning "Pass."


Call. 1) Declare, bid, or pass. 2) Bridge. Any pass, double, redouble or bid. 3) Poker. Make a bet exactly equal to the last previous bet.
Canasta. Canasta. A meld of seven or more of the same rank, with or without wild cards.
Cards. Cassino. The score of 3 for winning a majority of the cards.
Carte Blanche. A hand without a face card.
Case Card. The last card of a rank remaining in play.
Cash. Lead and win tricks with cards that are sure winners.
Cash Points. Cassino. The scores for Big and Little Cassino and aces.
Cat. See Big Tiger, Little Tiger.
Catch. Find valuable cards in the widow or in drawing from the stock.
Cat-hop. Faro. Two cards of the same rank among the last three.
Center. Solitaire. The foundation piles.
Check. 1) A counter or chip. 2) Poker. A nominal bet; usually one that does not require any chip to be put in the pot.
Chicane. Void of trumps.
Chip. 1) A token used in place of money, 2) Placing chips in the pot.
Chouette. A method by which three or more players can participate in a two-hand game.
Cinch Hand. Cinch. Play a trump higher than the five to prevent an opponent from winning with a Pedro. (See also Pedro.)
Cinch Hand. A hand that is sure to win.
Clear. 1) Hearts. Having taken in tricks with no counting cards. 2) To establish a suit; to draw trumps.
Close Cards. See Near Cards.
Coffee Housing. Attempting to mislead opponents as to one's cards by speech or manner.
Cold Hands. Poker. Hands dealt face up, as for determining the winner of extra chips in dividing the pot.
Colon. Bridgette. One of the three extra cards that separate the pack into groups and which, when discarded, force the opponent to lead a different suit.
Column. Solitaire. A line of cards extending toward the player; a part of the tableau used for building.
Come In. Enter the betting.
Come-on. Bridge. A signal to one's partner to continue leading a suit. (See Echo.)
Command. The best card of a suit; master card; control.
Commoquer. Panguingue. Any card but an ace or king.
Condition. A meld that has extra value, as in Panguingue.
Condone. Waive penalty for an irregularity.
Contract. The obligation to win a certain minimum number of tricks or points.
Contractor. The high bidder.
Conventions. Advance agreement between partners on how to exchange information by bids and plays.
Copper. Faro. A token placed on a bet, indicating that it is a bet on a card to lose.
Counter. 1) Chip, a token used in place of money. 2) A card that has scoring value when won in a trick.
Count Out. Go for game, especially by accumulation of points during the play of a hand.
Coup. 1) A brilliant play. 2) A winning play or bet.
Court Card. See Face Card.
Cover. Play a card higher than the highest previously played to the trick.
Crib. Cribbage. The extra hand formed by the players' discards, belonging to the dealer.
Cribbage Board. Cribbage. A device for scoring utilizing pegs.
Cross-ruff. Whist family. Alternate trumping of each other's plain-suit leads by the two hands of a partnership.
Cross the Suit. Euchre. Name as trump a suit of the opposite color from that of the rejected turn-up card.
Cue-bid. 1) Contract Bridge. One that systemically shows control of a suit, especially by possession of the ace or a void. 2) Bridgette. An artificial bid to ask one's opponent about short suits or high cards.
Curse of Scotland. The nine of diamonds.
Cut. 1) Divide the pack into two sections and reverse their order. (See Draw (1).)
Cutthroat. Three-Hand; applied also to any game in which each person plays for himself.
Cut the Pot. Take a percentage from the pot.


Dead Card. A card that cannot be used in play.
Dead Hand. A player or hand barred from further participation.
Dead Man's Hand. A poker hand, with two aces and two eights. (Said to have been held by Wild Bill Hickok when he was shot and killed.)
Deadwood. 1) Poker. The discard pile. 2) Rummy. Unmatched cards in a hand.
Deal. 1) Distribute cards to the players; the turn to deal. 2) The complete period from one hand to the next, including the scoring. 3) The cards dealt to the players respectively; a layout of the hands of all players.
Dealer. 1) The player who distributes the cards in preparation for play. 2) Banker.
Deal Off. Make the first deal in the last round after which the session ends.
Deal Out. Omit giving a card or cards to a hand in regular turn during the deal.
Deck. See Pack.
Declaration. Call; bid; naming of a trump suit or game. 2) The trump suit or game as named in a bid.
Declare. 1) Call; bid; name the trump. 2) Announce; meld.
Declare Out. See Count Out.
Declarer. 1) Bridge. The player who plays both his own hand and the dummy. 2) See Bidder (2).
Defender. Contract Bridge. An opponent of the declarer.
Defense. Bridge. 1) The opponents of the opening bidder during the auction or of the declarer. 2) During the play, their acts and tactics.
Demand Bid. Bridge. A strong bid that the partner must respond to by bidding himself.
Denial Bid. Bridge. A bid showing lack of support for a partner's declaration.
Denomination. 1) Rank. 2) Contract Bridge. The suit or notrump as named in a bid.
Deuce. A card with two pips.
Dis. See Dix.
Discard. 1) Lay aside excess cards in exchange for others from the stock or the widow; a discarded card or cards. 2) Play a plain-suit card not of the same suit as the lead.
Discard Pile. 1) Rummy. Cards previously discarded. 2) Solitaire. (See Talon.)
Distribution. Division of cards among the hands, especially as to the number of each suit held by each hand.
Dix. Pinochle. The lowest trump. Also, called "dis. "
Dog. See Big Dog, Little Dog.
Double. Bridge. A call that has the effect of increasing the trick values and penalties if the last preceding bid becomes the contract.
Double Bete. Pinochle. The penalty suffered by a bidder who has elected to play the hand and has lost.
Double Dummy.Whist family. A game or situation in which a player knows the location of all cards.
Double-Ended Straight. Poker. Four cards in sequence that can be filled to a straight by the draw of a card of next-higher or next-lower rank.
Double Pair Royal. Four of a kind.
Double Run. Cribbage. A hand comprising a run of three cards with one rank duplicated, such as 4, 5, 5, 6.
Double Skunk. Cribbage. An award of a quadruple victory for holding the opponent to 60 or fewer points in a 121-point game.
Doubleton. Whist family. A holding of two cards in a suit.
Down. Defeated; having failed to make a contract; set back.
Downtown. Bid Whist. The Format of having the cards rank in reverse, A, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, J, Q, K(low). (See also Format.)
Draw. 1) Pull cards from a pack spread face down to determine seats, first deal, and the like. 2) Receive cards from the stock to replace discards.
Drop. Withdraw from a current deal or pot.
Duck. Bridge. Fail to Cover when able. (See also Cover.)
Dummy. Bridge. Declarer's partner; the hand laid down by that player and played by declarer.
Duplicate. A form of Bridge or Whist in tournament play in which all contestants play the same series of deals, which are kept in their original form by the use of duplicate boards.
Dutch Straight. See Skip Straight.


Eagles. A fifth suit, green in color, at one time added to the standard deck.
Easy Aces. Auction Bridge. A round of play during which each side holds two aces.
Echo. Whist family. The play, for signaling purposes, of a higher card before a lower card of the same suit.
Endhand. Skat family. The active player who is third in order of bidding.
End Play. Any of several stratagems (especially a throw-in) that can usually be executed only in the last few tricks of the play. (See also Throw-in.)
Entry. A card with which a hand can eventually win a trick and so gain the lead.
Escalera. Bolivia. A canasta of cards in sequence rather than of the same denomination.
Establish. See Clear (2).
Euchre. Euchre. Failure of the maker to win the number of tricks he contracted for.
Exacto. Bridgette. In the six-deal version, the bonus scored for fulfilling the contract exactly, with no overtricks.
Exchange. Bridgette. The period prior to the bidding during which cards are drawn and switched so as to improve one's original hand.
Exit. Get out of the lead; compel another hand to win a trick.
Exposed Card. A card played in error, inadvertently dropped, or otherwise shown in an illegitimate manner and therefore (in most games) subject to penalty.


Face Card. Any king, queen, or jack. Also called "picture card. "
Faced. A card lying with its face exposed.
False Card. A card selected for play, when there is a choice, to mislead opponents as to the contents of the hand.
Fatten. 1) Poker. See Sweeten. 2) Pinochle. See Smear.
Fifteen. Cribbage. A combination of cards totaling 15 in pip values; the score of 2 for such a combination.
Fill. Poker. Draw cards that improve one's original hand.
Finesse. Whist family. An attempt to make a card serve as an equal to a higher-ranking card held by an opponent.
First Hand. 1) The leader to a trick. 2) The first player in turn to call. 3) The player to the left of the dealer.
Fish.Go Fish. Draw cards from the stock.
Five-Card Charlie. Black Jack. In the changing bank version, a hand of five cards that total 21 or less and entitle the holder to a bonus payment.
Five Fingers. The five of trumps.
Flag Flying. Bridge. Assuming a losing contract to prevent the opponents from winning a game.
Flash. Expose a card, as in dealing.
Flush. 1) Poker, Cribbage. A hand with all cards in one suit. 2) Pinochle. A meld of the A, K, Q, J, 10 of trumps. 3) Loo. A three-card hand containing all trumps.
Fold. Stud Poker. Withdraw from the current deal, as signified by turning one's cards face down.
Follow Suit. Play a card of the same suit as the lead.
Forecaster. Eleusis. The term used for players who think they have discovered the secret rule.
Force. 1) Compel a player to trump if he wishes to win the trick. 2) Contract Bridge. By a conventional call, demand that one's partner bid. 3) Rummy. Discard a card that the next player is required to take.
Forehand. Skat family. The active player who is first in order of bidding. (See First Hand.)
Format. Bid Whist. The determination of whether the cards rank ace down to deuce, or, in reverse, ace down to king.
Foul Hand. Poker. One of more or less than the legal number of cards.
Foundation. Solitaire. A card on which a whole suit or sequence must bebuilt up.
Four Flush. Poker. Four cards of the same suit.
Four of a Kind. Four cards of the same rank, such as four aces.
Fourth-best. Whist family. The fourth-highest card of a suit in one's hand.
Freak. 1) Bridge. A hand of extraordinary pattern. 2) Poker. A wild card.
Free Bid. Bridge. A bid made voluntarily, not compelled by a rule of the game.
Free Double. Bridge. The double of an adverse contract which is sufficient for game if made undoubled.
Free Ride. Poker. Playing in a pot without having to ante or bet.
Freeze. Canasta. Discard a wild card to make it more difficult for opponents to take the discard pile.
Freezeout. Any variation of a game in which a player must drop out when his original stake is exhausted.
Frog. Skat family. The bid of lowest value. Also called "frage. "
Front Hand. 1) The 2-card hand in Pai-Gow. 2) The 3-card hand in Pusoy.
Full Hand. See Full House.
Full House. Poker. A hand comprising three of a kind and a pair.


Game. 1) A pastime, in the general sense, as Bridge, Poker. 2) The specific number of points that determines the winner of a contest, as 121 points in Cribbage. 3) The specific number of tricks or points that must be won in play to fulfill contract, as 61 or more in Skat. 4) A declaration, as in Skat. 5) A variation of the basic game named by the dealer to be played in that deal, as in Dealer's Choice Poker. 6) A certain card, as the ten of trumps in some versions of All Fours. 7) A system of play.
Gate. The pay-off card, as in Monte Bank.
Gift. All Fours. The point scored by the "First hand" when he begs and the dealer rejects.
Gin. Gin Rummy. A hand completely formed in sets, with no deadwood.
Go. Cribbage. A call signifying that the player cannot play another card without exceeding 31; the score of 1 point to an opponent when Go is called.
Go Down. Rummy. Meld, especially when the act terminates play.
Go Out. 1) Get rid of all cards in one's hand, as in Michigan Rummy. 2) Reach the cumulative total of points needed to win the game, as in All Fours. 3) Count out, as in Cribbage.
Go Over. Bid higher.
Goulash. Bridge. A deal of unshuffled cards, three or more at a time, to produce unusual hands.
Grand. Skat family. A declaration in which only the jacks are trumps. Also called "grando. "
Grand Coup. Bridge. A stratagem of play; the trumping of partner's winning plain card in order to shorten a trump holding to advantage.
Grand Slam. Whist family. The winning of all 13 tricks by one side.
Group. 1) Rummy. A meld of cards of the same rank. 2) Bridgette. One of three categories: aces and the grand colon, picture cards and the royal colon, and spot cards and the little colon.
Guarded. Bridge. Accompanied by as many small cards of the same suit as there are higher cards outstanding. Guckser. Skat. A declaration in which jacks are trumps and the bidder picks up the Skat. Also called "gucki. "
Guide Card. Duplicate Bridge. A large sheet that indicates to which table partnerships must move after each round of play.


Hand. l). The cards dealt to or held by any player; 2) Any player. 3) See Deal (2). 4) Solitaire. An undealt remainder of the pack after the tableau is laid out.
Handplay. Playing without use of the widow.
High. All Fours family. The ace of trumps, or the highest trump dealt; the score for holding such a card.
High Low. 1) Bridge. See Echo. 2) Poker. Designating a pot that the highest and lowest hands divide.
High Value. Cribbitaire. Combinations of cards that are too valuable to be discarded in the crib.
Hinterhand. See Endhand.
His Heels. Cribbage. 1) A jack turned as starter card; 2) the score of 2 to the dealer for turning up a jack.
His Nobs. Cribbage. 1) A jack of the same suit as the starter card, in one's hand or in the crib. 2) The score of 1 point for such a jack.
Hit Me. Black Jack. A player's request for an additional card.
Hoc. Faro. The last card in a deal. Also called "hock", "hockelty. "
Holding. The cards in a player's hand.
Hold Up. Bridge. Refuse to win a trick with a sure winning card, preferring to wait until a subsequent trick.
Hole Card. Stud Poker. The first card, dealt face down, received by a player.
Honors. 1) High cards, especially if they have scoring value. 2) Bridge. The five highest trumps, or, if there is no trump, the four aces.
Honor-tricks. Bridge. High cards, in the evaluation of a hand.


Immortal Hand. See Cinch Hand.
Improve. Draw cards that increase the value of a hand.
Index. The small number or letter and suit symbol printed near the corner of a card, used to read the card when it is held in a fan with others.
Informatory Double. Bridge. A double in some bidding systems made primarily to give information to a player's partner.
Initial Bid. See Opening Bid.
Inside Straight. Poker. Four cards needing a card of interior rank to make a straight, such as 9, 8, 6, 5.
Insufficient Bid. A call that is not legally high enough to overcall the preceding bid.
Intermediates. Bridge. Cards, such as nines and 10s, that are not high enough to be valued but affect the strength of a hand.
In the Hole. A minus score, named after the practice (as in Euchre) of marking a score as minus by drawing a ring around it.
Irregularity. Any departure from a rule of correct procedure.


Jack. 1) All Fours family. The score for winning the jack of trumps in play. 2) Hearts. A pool not won because no hand is clear, and therefore held intact for the next deal.
Jackpot. Poker. A deal in which everyone antes; usually, in such a deal a pair of jacks or better is required to open.
Jambone. Railroad Euchre. A bid to play alone and with the entire hand face up on the table.
Jamboree. Railroad Euchre. A hand holding the five highest trumps which, when shown and scored, cancels the necessity to play.
Jass, Jasz. Klaberjass. The jack of trumps.
Jink It. Spoil Five. Play for all five tricks.
Joker. An extra card furnished with the standard 52-card pack and used in some games as the highest trump or as a wild card. See also Bug.
Jump Bid. Bridge. A bid of more tricks than are legally needed to overcall the previous bid, such as Three Spades after a bid of Two Hearts.
Junior. See Younger.


Kibitzer. A spectator; one who watches a game but does not otherwise participate.
Kicker. Draw Poker. An extra card kept with a pair for a two-card draw, such as a single ace kept with a pair of sixes.
Kilter. Poker. A hand nine-high with no pair, straight, or flush.
Kitty. 1) A percentage taken out of the stakes to defray expenses or pay admission fees; a pool to which bets are paid and from which royalties are collected. 2) The Widow in Bid Whist and other card games. (See also Widow.)
Knave. The jack of a suit.
Knock. 1) Rummy family. Signify termination of play by laying down one's hand. 2) Poker. Showing one does not want to cut the pack, or to bet, by knocking on the table.


Laps. Excess points that are carried foward, from one game to the next.
Last. Points scored for winning the last trick, as in Pinochle.
Lay Away. 1) Cribbage. Give cards to the crib. 2) Pinochle. See Bury (2).
Lay-down. See Cinch Hand.
Lay Off. Rummy. Get rid of one's cards on an opponent's meld.
Layout. Solitaire. The array of cards first dealt out, comprising the tableau and possibly a stock and foundations. (See also Foundation; Tableau.)
Lead. 1) Play first to a trick; 2) the card so played.
Least. Schafskopf. The format played if all players pass, the object being to take as few counting cards as possible.
Left Bower. Euchre. The other jack of the same color as the jack of the trump suit.
Light. In debt to the pot.
Limit. Poker. The maximum amount by which a player may increase a previous bet.
Line. Gin Rummy. See Box.
Little Cassino. Cassino. The two of spades.
Little Dog. Poker. A special hand, consisting of seven-high and deuce-low but no pair.
Little Joker. The lower of the two jokers, which, in a game with trumps, ranks as the second highest trump.
Little Slam. See Small Slam.
Little Tiger. Poker. A special hand, consisting of eight-high and three-low but no pair.
Live Card. A card still in the hands or stock, or otherwise available; a card that is not Dead.
Lock. A sure thing; a cinch.
Lone Player. One who elects to play without the help of his partner's hand; solo player.
Long Card. A card left in one's hand after all opponents no longer have cards in that suit.
Long Game. A game in which all cards are dealt out originally and no stock remains, as in Bridge.
Long Suit. Whist family. 1) A holding of more than four cards in a suit. 2) The longest holding in any suit in a hand.
Loo. Loo. Failure to win one of the three tricks, which exposes the player to increased payments in the next round.
Look. See Call (2).
Losing Card. A card that cannot be expected to win a trick. Also called Loser.
Love. Score of zero.
Low. All Fours family. 1) The two of trumps, or the lowest trump dealt. 2) The score for holding or winning such card.
Lurch. Winning a game before an opponent has passed the half-way mark, as in Cribbage.


Make. 1) Fulfill a contract. 2) Name the trump suit or game.
Make Good. Poker. Add enough chips to meet the previous bet.
Maker. Player who names the trump suit or game.
Make Up. Gather and shuffle the pack for the next deal.
Manille, or Manilla. The lowest card of a trump suit in games where it ranks as the second-best trump.
March. Euchre. The winning of all five tricks by one player or one side; the score for winning all the tricks.
Marriage. Bezique family. A meld of the king and queen of a suit.
Master Card. The highest card of a suit remaining live or unplayed.
Matador. Any of an unbroken sequence of trumps from the highest down; any high trump.
Matched Set. Rummy family. (See Set (1).)
Matchpoint. Duplicate Bridge. A unit of scoring awarded to a partnership in comparison with one or more other scores.
Meld. 1) A combination, set, or group of cards that either scores or helps a player to get rid of cards in his hand; 2) to show or announce such a combination.
Menel. Klaberjass. The nine of trumps.
Middlehand. Skat family. The active player who is second in order of bidding.
Middle Hand. Pusoy. The second five-card hand, which ranks between the first and last of three poker hands set up for play.
Milking. A method of shuffling, by drawing cards simultaneously from the top and bottom of the pack and piling them on the table.
Misdeal. Any departure from the laws of correct procedure in dealing.
Misere or Misery. See Nullo.
Mixed Pair. In tournament play, a partnership of a man and a woman.
Mouth Bet. A bet announced by a player who puts no chips in the pot.
Muggins. Cribbage. The right of a player to take points overlooked by his opponent.
Multipliers. Skat. Amounts by which the base value of the trump suit is multiplied to determine the value of a game.


Natural. 1) A hand without any wild card. 2) A combination that wins without further play or contest except from another natural.
Near Card. Cribbage. A card consecutive with another card, or nearly so.
Negative Double. See Informatory Double.
Nest. Euchre. The other suit of the same color as the rejected turn-up card.
Notrump. A declaration that offers to play the hand without a trump suit.
Nullo. A declaration in which the object of play is to avoid winning tricks or points.


Odd Trick. Bridge. Any trick won by the declarer in excess of six tricks.
Off, Offside. Bridge. Not in position to be captured by a finesse. (See Finesse.)
Official. Pinochle. Validated by the winning of a trick; said of the score for a meld.
One-ender. Poker. A, K, Q, J or A, 2, 3, 4.
Open. 1) Make the first declaration or the first bid. 2) Poker. Make the first bet. 3) A declaration that offers to play with the entire hand face up on the table. 4) Stud Poker. Cards face up on the table. 5) Make the first lead of a suit.
Open-ender. Poker. See Double-Ended Straight.
Openers. Poker. A holding that entitles a player to make the first bet.
Opening Bid. The first bid of the auction.
Order Up. Euchre. A declaration by an opponent of the dealer, accepting the turn-up card for trump.
Original Bid. See Opening Bid.
Ouvert. See Open (3).
Overbid. 1) Overcall. 2) A bid that cannot be expected to be fulfilled.
Overcall. Make a bid high enough to supersede the preceding bid.
Overhand Shuffle. A shuffle executed by holding the pack in one hand and dropping packets from the top into the other hand.
Overtrick. Bridge. Any trick won by declarer in excess of the contract.


Pack. Deck of cards; the aggregation of all cards used in a game.
Packet. A portion of the pack; refers especially to shuffling and cutting.
Paint. 1) Hearts. Discard a heart on a trick won by another player. 2) Lowball Poker. Deal a face card to a player who is drawing to low cards.
Pair. 1) Two cards of the same rank. 2) A partnership of two players.
Pair Royal. Cribbage. Three of a kind.
Pam. The jack of clubs in some card games.
Part score. Bridge. A trick score total of less than game, also, called "partial. "
Pass. 1) A declaration signifying that a player does not wish to bid or bet, or that he withdraws from the current deal. 2) Hearts family. Cards exchanged among the original hands after the deal.
Passt Mir Nicht. Skat. The second turn.
Pat Hand. Draw Poker. 1) A hand requiring no discard and no draw. 2) A player who draws no cards.
Pattern. Whist family. A group of four integers, as 4-4-3-2, expressing the way in which a given suit is divided among the four hands or a given hand is divided into suits.
Pedro. Cinch. The five of trumps or the other five of the same color.
Peg. Cribbage. 1) A marker used for scoring on a cribbage board. 2) To win points, especially during the play.
Penalty Card. Contract Bridge. An exposed card that must be played at the first legal opportunity.
Penalty Double. See Business Double.
Penny Ante. Poker. A game in which the ante or limit is one cent.
Pianola. Bridge. A lay-down hand, one that is sure to win all the tricks.
Picture Card. See Face Card.
Pigeon. Poker. A card drawn that greatly improves one's hand.
Pinochle. Pinochle. A meld of the queen of spades and jack of diamonds.
Pip. Any of the large suit symbols ♠, ♥, ♦, ♣ printed on the face of a card (excluding index marks).
Pip Value. The numerical or index value of a card.
Pique. Piquet. 1) The winning of 30 points before the opponent scores a point. 2) The bonus of 30 points awarded to this win. Also called "pic".
Pitch. Auction Pitch. The opening lead that fixes the trump suit.
Pivot. 1) A schedule for four players whereby each person plays with each other player as his partner. 2) The player who remains in the same seat while the others progress.
Places Open. Pinochle. Available cards that will improve a hand.
Plain Suit. Cards of a suit that are not the trump suit.
Player. 1) A participant in a game. 2) Skat. The highest bidder, who then plays alone against the two others in partnership. 3) A card that may legally be played.
Playing to the Score. Modifying normal strategy of bidding or play when one side is close to game.
Play Off. Cribbage. Play a card of rank far enough from that of previous cards so that opponent cannot use it to make a run.
Play On. Cribbage. Play a card that may enable an opponent to make a run.
Point. 1) A unit of scoring. 2) Piquet. A scoring combination; the holding in a suit that totals the greatest number of pips; the score for such a holding.
Point Count. Bridge. A method of evaluating a player's hand by assigning a relative number of points to each high card held.
Pone. The player on the dealer's right; in two-hand play, the non-dealer.
Pool. See Pot.
Post mortem. Discussion of the merits of the bidding and play after the hand is over.
Pot. The aggregate of chips or money at stake in a deal, consisting usually of contributions from each active player.
Predict. Skat. See Announce (3).
Preemptive Bid. Bridge. A high opening bid made to shut out competition.
Premiums. 1) See Royalties. 2) Bridge. All scores other than for odd tricks.
Progression. Movement of players or of boards from table to table in Progressive or Duplicate Bridge.
Psychic Bid. Bridge. A bid made without the cards to support it for the purpose of misleading opponents.
Punter. One who plays against the bank.
Puppy foot. The ace of clubs; any club.
Pure Canasta. See Natural Canasta (1).


Quart. Piquet. A sequence of four cards in the same suit.
Quatorze. Piquet. Four of a kind (10s or higher), counting 14.
Quick Tricks. See Honor-Tricks.
Quint. Piquet. A sequence of five cards in the same suit.
Quitted Trick. A trick that has been taken and turned face down.


Raise. 1) Poker. Put more chips in the pot than are needed to meet the previous bet. 2) Bridge. Bid an increased number of tricks in a declaration previously bid by one's partner.
Rake off. The percentage of the stakes taken by the house or club, usually by means of a kitty.
Ramsch. Skat. A nullo game, which is played if all players pass.
Rank. The ordinal position of a card in its suit.
Rearhand. See Endhand.
Rebid. Bridge. A bid made by a player who has previously bid.
Receiver. Bridgette. The opponent of the dealer.
Renege. See Revoke.
Renig. Bid Whist. See Revoke.
Renounce. Play a card not of the suit led.
Repique. Piquet. 1) The winning of 30 points in hand, without play, before the opponent scores a point. 2) A bonus of 60 points awarded for such a win. Also called "repic".
Reserve. Solitaire. A special packet of cards dealt out at the beginning, which is used, one card at a time, during the play.
Response. Bridge. A bid made in reply to a bid by one's partner.
Revoke. Failure to follow suit when possible; failure to play a card as required by a law of correct procedure, or by a proper penalty.
Riffle. A way of shuffling, primarily with the thumbs of both hands, allowing the cards to drop alternately.
Right Bower. Euchre. The jack of the trump suit.
Robbing. Exchanging a card in the hand for the card turned up for trump.
Rob the Pack. Cinch. Select any desired cards from the stock (the privilege of the dealer).
Roodles. Poker. Any special pot with increased ante or stakes.
Rotation. Progression of the turn to deal, to receive cards, to bid, or to play.
Rough. Poker. Relatively bad.
Round. 1) Any division of the dealing, bidding, or play in which each player participates once. 2) A trick.
Round Game. One in which there are no partnerships.
Round House. Pinochle. A meld comprising a king and a queen of each suit, also called "round trip".
Round-the-Corner. Circular sequence of rank, the highest card being deemed adjacent to the lowest, such as Q, K, A, 2, 3 a round-the-corner straight in Poker.
Royal Flush. Poker. An ace-high straight flush.
Royal Marriage. Bezique family. A meld of the king and queen of trumps.
Royal Sequence. Pinochle. See Flush.
Royalties. Payments collected by a player who holds any of certain high hands, given in addition to whatever the player may win in regular play.
Rubber. Bridge. The winning of the first two out of three games by one side or of a series of deals in Four deal Bridge.
Rubber Bridge. Bridge. A form of play in which rubbers are scored (as opposed to duplicate play).
Rubicon. Pique. Failure of the loser of a game to reach 100 points.
Ruff. Play a trump on a plain-suit lead.
Rummy. Rummy family. 1) To get rid of the last card in a player's hand; lay down a hand completely formed in sets. 2) To call attention to a play overlooked by an opponent.
Run. A sequence of three or more cards of the same suit as in Cribbage or Rummy.
Run the Cards. All Fours. Deal additional cards and make a new turn-up, when a beg is accepted. (See also Beg.)


Sacrifice Bid. Bridge. A call made without the expectation that the contract will be fulfilled, in order to avoid a greater loss.
Samba. Samba. A canasta of cards in sequence in the same suit rather than in the same denomination.
Sandbagging. Withholding action on a good hand in order to trap an opponent into greater loss.
Schmeiss. Klaberjass. A declaration that is a proposal to accept the turn-up card for trump or abandon the deal.
Schmier. See Smear.
Schneider. 1) Skat family. Failure of one side to win 31 or more points in a play. 2) Gin Rummy. See Shutout.
Schwarz. Skat family. The winning of all the tricks by one player or one side.
Scoop. High-Low Poker. To win both the high and low portions of the pot by having both the highest and lowest hands.
Score. 1) The counting value of specific cards or tricks. 2) The accumulated total of points won by a player or a side. 3) Score sheet.
Second Hand. Second in turn to call or play.
Second Turn. Skat. Turning up the second skat card for trump.
See. Poker. Meet a bet; Call (2).
Senior. See First Hand.
Sequence. Two or more cards of adjacent rank. As 8, 9, 10; in Rummy, such cards in the same suit.
Serve. Deal cards, especially additional cards in Draw Poker.
Set. 1) A combination of melding or scoring value, as in Rummy. 2) Defeat the contract, as in Bridge.
Set Back. 1) A deduction from a player's accumulated score. 2) An alternative name for certain games, such as Cutthroat Euchre.
Sextette. Piquet. A sequence of six cards in the same suit.
Shoe. A dealing box used in Chemin de Fer, Baccarat and other casino games.
Short Game. Any round of play in which not all the cards of the pack are used during a deal.
Short Suit. 1) Whist family. A holding of fewer than four cards in a suit. 2) Bridgette. A holding of fewer than three cards in a suit.
Show. 1) Meld; expose. 2) Cribbage. Count the hand.
Showdown. Poker. Turning the cards of all active hands face up to determine the winner of a pot.
Shuffle. Mix the cards in the pack in preparation for dealing.
Shutout. 1) Gin Rummy. The winning of a game before a player's opponent has scored a point. 2) Bridge. A preemptive bid.
Shy. Short, as said of a pot to which additional antes are due, or of a player who owes chips to the pot.
Side Card. 1) Any of a plain suit. 2) Poker. The highest card in the hand aside from a pair or two pairs, used to in determine the higher hand between two players that hold one or two pairs of the same rank.
Side Money. A bet in a side pot.
Side Pot. Table Stakes Poker. One separate from the main pot, made by continued betting after one player has put all his chips in the main pot.
Side Strength. High cards in plain suits.
Side Suit. See Plain Suit.
Sight. The right to compete for the main pot in the showdown.
Signal. Whist family. Any convention of play whereby one partner properly informs the other of his holdings or desires.
Simple Game. Skat family. The lowest declaration that may be bid.
Simple Honors. Auction Bridge. The holding of three honors by one side; the score thereof.
Sign-off. A bid that asks a player's partner to pass.
Singleton. Whist family. A holding of one card in a suit.
Sink. Piquet. Omit announcement of a scoring combination (for possible advantage in play).
Skat. Skat family. The widow.
Skeet. Poker. A special hand, consisting of 2, 5, 9 and two other cards lower than 9, but no pair
Skip Bid. See Jump Bid.
Skip Straight. Poker. A special hand, consisting of a sequence of odd or even cards, such as J, 9, 7, 5, 3.
Skunk. Cribbage. A doubling of the winner's score for holding the opponent to 90 or fewer points in a 121-point game.
Skunked. Beaten without having scored a point.
Slam. The winning of all the tricks by one side.
Sluff . Dispose of an unwanted card by discarding. Also called Slough. (See Discard (2)).
Small Slam. Whist family. The winning of twelve tricks by one side.
Smear. Discard a counting card ona trick won by a player's partner, thereby adding to its value. Also called "Schmier".
Smoke Out. Hearts family. Force out the queen of spades by repeated leads of lower denominations of spades.
Smooth. Poker. Relatively good.
Smudge. Auction Pinch. A bid to win all four points.
Sneak. Whist family. A plain suit singleton. (See Singleton.)
Soda. Faro. The first card the dealer turns up from the deck after dealing the hands.
Soft Hand. Black Jack. An ace with a number card making two different possible counts, in that the ace counts 1 or 11. Thus, A, 4 may count 5 or 15.
Solo. Skat. A bid to play without using the widow.
Space. Solitaire. A vacancy in the tableau created by the removal of all cards of one pile.
Spadille. The queen of clubs. Also called Spadilla.
Split. 1) Faro. The appearance of two cards of the same rank in one turn. 2) See Break.
Splitting Openers. Poker. In a jackpot, discarding part of the combination that qualified the hand to open (in an effort to better the chances of improvement).
Spot Card. Any of rank 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2.
Spread. 1) Open; show. 2) Meld. 3) A contract that can be fulfilled without playing.
Squeeze. 1) Look at one's cards by slightly separating them at one corner to see the indexes. 2) Bridge. Compel other hands to discard; an end-play dependent upon compelling adverse discards. (See also Throw-In.)
Stack. Pile of chips; quota of chips assigned to each player.
Stand. 1) All Fours. A declaration by "First hand" that he is satisfied with the turn-up card for trump. 2) Decline to draw additional cards.
Stand off. A tie or draw.
Stand Pat. Decline to draw additional cards; play with one's original hand.
Starter. Cribbage. The card cut by a non-dealer and turned up by the dealer prior to the play.
Stay. Poker. Remain in the pot without raising; meet a bet; call.
Stiff Card. See Long Card.
Still Pack. The deck that is not being used in a game for which two packs are used in rotation.
Stock. An undealt portion of the pack, which may be used later in the same deal.
Stop. 1) Stops family. Interruption of play caused by absence of the next card in sequence; the card so missing. 2) Russian Bank. A call upon an opponent to cease play because of an irregularity in the order of play.
Stop Card. Canasta. A card, such as a black three, that prevents a player from taking the discard pile.
Stopper. A holding by which a hand can eventually win a trick in a suit led by an opponent.
Straddle. Poker. Raise the previous player's blind or the previous player's straddle by doubling it. (See also Blind.)
Straight. Poker. A hand of five cards in sequence, but not all in the same suit.
Straight Flush. Poker. A hand of five cards the same suit in sequence.
Stringer. See Sequence.
Strip. Remove low cards from the pack to reduce the number of cards, as required by a particular game, such as Pinochle or Skat.
Support. Cards that are of assistance to a partner. (See Raise (2).)
Sweep. Cassino. Taking in all cards on the table; the score of 1 point for doing so.
Sweepstake. Hearts. A method of settlement in which the pot is won only by a player who is clear (has taken no counting cards).
Sweeten. Poker. Ante again to a jackpot not opened on the previous deal.
Switching. Bid Whist. Placing a joker in the kitty in exchange for another card.
System. Bridge. An agreement between partners on the requirements for various bids, and on tactical procedures in various situations.


Tableau. 1) Solitaire. That part of the layout, excluding foundations, on which builds are made. 2) In some games, the entire layout.
Table Stakes. Poker. The placing of a limit on betting.
Take-All. Hearts. The winning of all the counting cards by one player. Sometimes called "shoot the moon".
Take In. Gather cards from the table, as in Cassino.
Takeout. 1) Bridge. A bid, over one's partner's bid, in a different denomination. 2) Poker. (See Stack (2).
Take the Lead. Stud Poker. Make the first bet in a round.
Take Up. Euchre. Accept the first card turned face up after the hands are dealt, as trump.
Tally. Score sheet, especially as used in progressive play.
Talon. Solitaire. Waste pile; cards laid aside as unplayable on being turned up from the stock or hand.
Tap. Poker. Bet all the chips in one's possession.
Tenace. Whist family. A holding of two cards in a suit, lacking one or more cards of intervening rank, as A, J. The Major Tenace is A, Q; the Minor Tenace is K, J.
Ten Card. Black Jack. The ten, jack, queen or king, each of which has a count of 10.
Tenth Card. Any of pip value 10, as a face card in Cribbage. Third Hand. Third in turn to call or play.
Three of a Kind. Three cards of the same rank, such as three aces.
Threes. See Three of a Kind.
Throw-In. An end-play dependent on compelling an opponent to win a trick and then lead to his disadvantage.
Throw Off. Discard; smear.
Tierce. Piquet. A sequence of three cards of the same suit.
Tiger. See Big Tiger, Little Tiger.
Tops. Highest cards of a suit.
Total Point Scoring. Bridge. A method of scoring in duplicate play.
Touching. Adjacent in rank.
Tournee. Skat. A declaration that offers to turn up a card from the skat to fix the trump suit.
Trail. Cassino. Play a card to the table without building or taking in.
Traveling Score Slip. Duplicate Bridge. A small piece of paper that is used to record the score of a hand for each set of two partnerships that play a duplicate hand, and for tallying the results and awarding the correct matchpoint score. (See also Matchpoint.)
Trey. Any three-spot (playing card with three pips).
Trick. A round of cards during which one card is contributed by each active player; the packet of such cards when gathered.
Trick Score. Bridge. Points made by declarer for odd tricks; the part ofthe score sheet where such points are entered.
Triplets. Three of a kind.
Trump Card. 1) Any card of the trump suit. 2) A card designated as a trump by the rules of the game.
Trump Suit. A suit selected, under the rules of the game, which then ranks higher than any other (non-trump) suit in winning tricks. Any card of the trump suit is higher than any other card of a non-trump suit.
Turn. 1) A player's opportunity, in rotation, to deal declare, play, and so on. 2) A play that decides how certain bets shall be settled.
Turn It Down. Euchre. Reject the first turned up card as trump.
Turn-up. A card turned face up, after the deal, to fix or propose the trump suit.
Two-suiter. Bridge. A hand containing five or more cards in each of two suits.


Unblock. Bridge. Avoid or resolve a blocked suit by cashing or discarding high cards. (See also, Blocking a Suit; Cash.)
Undercut. Gin Rummy. Show a hand that counts the same or less than the opponent's, after the opponent has knocked.
Under the Gun. Poker. The first player in turn to bet.
Undertrick. Bridge. Any trick by which the declarer falls short of making the contract.
Unlimited Poker. A game in which the players have agreed not to limit the size of the bets and the number of raises.
Unload. Get rid of the dangerous cards in one's hand.
Unmatched Card. Rummy family. Any card that is not part of a set; deadwood.
Up. Poker. A term used, such as "aces up," to designate the higher pair in a two-pair hand.
Upcard. 1) Stud Poker. A card properly dealt face up. 2) The first card turned up from the stock after the deal.
Uppercut. Bridge. Play a high trump to force out a higher trump in an opponent's hand.
Uptown. Bid Whist. The format of having the cards rank from ace (high) down to deuce (low). (Compare Downtown.)


Vigorish. The fee or percentage accruing to the banker of a game.
Void. See Blank.
Vulnerable. Contract Bridge. Designating a side that has won a game toward the rubber.


Waste Pile. Solitaire. Talon; a pile of discards; cards laid aside as unwanted or as unplayable.
Wheel. See Bicycle.
Whipsawed. Faro. Condition of a player who loses two bets on the same turn.
Wide Cards. Cribbage. Two cards separated in rank by two or more cards
Widow. Extra cards dealt at the same time as the hands, and which usually become the property of the highest bidder. Also called, "blind" or "skat".
Wild Card. A card that may be specified by the holder to be of any rank and suit its holder designates.
With. Skat. Holding the specified number of top trumps in unbroken sequence from the jack of clubs down.
Without. Bridge. 1) A call meaning "Notrump. " 2) Skat. Lacking the specified number of top trumps, all higher than the best held in the hand.


X. A symbol representing any card lower than the lowest specified card of the same suit, as ♠J, x, x.


Yarborough. Whist family. A hand containing no card higher than a nine.
Younger Hand. In two-hand play, the player who does not lead first.