Glossary of blackjack terms
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five card Charlie
The following is a glossary of terms used in the card game blackjack. This is not intended to be a formal dictionary; precise usage details and multiple closely related senses are omitted here in favor of concise treatment of the basics.
- Being told by a casino that you are being removed, generally due to suspected advantage play.
- balanced count
- Any counting system which has an exact balance between plus cards and minus cards. In such a system, if the deck were counted down to the bottom, the resulting sum would be zero.
- 1. A card game in which players attempt to approach 21 but not exceed it
- 2. The best possible hand in the game blackjack, made up of an ace and a card valued at 10 (namely, 10, J, Q, K).
- Having a total over 21.
- bust card
- The individual card that brings the hand's total over 21.
- basic strategy
- A collection of actions that will offer the best odds off the top of the deck. These actions vary when different rules are applied to the game.
- cut card
- A brightly colored plastic card that serves to mark the point after which the dealer will reshuffle the cards, and used by a player to cut the cards prior to dealing.
- double or double down
- After seeing his hand, a player can Double by placing an additional bet equal to his original bet and subsequently drawing one and only one additional card. This move may only be used on the first two cards.
- even money
- When the dealer shows an ace and the player has a blackjack, the player can opt for even money and is paid immediately at 1:1. This is just a version of insurance, not a different bet. If the dealer has blackjack, the hand is a push, but the player receives two times the value of the insurance, which is the same as the original bet. If the dealer does not have blackjack, the player wins 1.5 times the value of the original bet but loses the value of the insurance, and still ends up with the value of the original bet.
- first base
- The betting spot located to the dealer's left, which is first to receive cards and first to act in non-tournament games.
- A bonus or automatic win in some games when a hand contains five cards without busting.
- hard hand
- A hand in which there is a chance the player will bust on a hit.
- To ask for another card. If that extra card makes the total over 21, then the player busts.
- hole card
- A dealer card that is dealt face down and not revealed to players until after they have acted upon their hands
- When the dealer shows an ace, the player can choose to place a side bet of up to half the value of the original bet. If the dealer has blackjack, the bet pays 2:1. If the dealer does not have blackjack, the player loses the wager.
- Receiving a sum of 21 in the first two hands. A blackjack.
- A number or fraction that represents how many cards/decks will be dealt before shuffling in contrast to the total number of cards/decks in play. It may be expressed in percentage form or as a fraction where the denominator is always the total number of decks in play such as "4.5/6" or "75% penetration" In literature it may be abbreviated "PEN"
- pitch game
- A blackjack game dealt from the hand of the dealer using 1 or 2 decks
- A tie; the player and dealer have hands with the same total.
- A device used to hold multiple decks of cards typically 4,6 or 8 prior to the dealer removing them one card at a time to be used during play.
- shoe game
- A blackjack game which is dealt from a shoe. Shoe games typically use 4,5,6 or 8 decks.
- A soft hand is a hand that includes an ace valued as 11, as opposed to 1.
- If a player is dealt two cards of the same rank, he can choose to play each of them separately, putting up a bet for each one.
- To stop asking for more cards.
- Any hard hand where the possibility to exceed 21 exists by drawing an additional card namely 12,13,14,15 or 16
- To surrender is to abandon your hand, while recovering half of your initial bet.
- third base
- The betting spot located on the dealer's right which is last to act.
- The card that the dealer is showing.
- Dalton, Michael. "The Encyclopedia of Casino Twenty-One - Blackjack Review Network". Blackjack Review Network. Retrieved 1 February 2018.
- "Glossary of terms". Retrieved 1 February 2018.