American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A card game ancestral to bridge, played with a full deck by two teams of two players, in which the last card dealt indicates trump, tricks of four cards are played, and a point is scored for each trick over six won by each team.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Silence! hush! be still!
- Hushed; silent; mute; still: chiefly used predicatively.
- n. A game played with cards by four persons, two of them as partners in opposition to the other two, also partners. Partnership is determined by agreement or by cutting: if by agreement, two players, one on each side, cut for deal; if by cutting, the two who cut the lowest cards are partners, and the original deal belongs to the player who cuts the lowest card. The ace is the lowest card in cutting. Previous to play, the cards (a full pack) are shuffled. The player on the right of the dealer cuts, and the dealer, beginning with the player on his left, distributes in regular order to all the players, one at a time, the cards face downward, except the last card, which he turns face upward upon the table, at his right hand, where it must remain until his turn to play. This is the trump card, and the suit to which it belongs is the trump suit; the other three suits are plain suits. The leader is the dealer's left-hand player, who begins the play by throwing one of his thirteen cards face upward upon the center of the table. Second hand, the leader's left-hand player, follows with a card of the same suit if he holds one; if he does not hold one, with a card of a plain suit(a discard) or with a trump; third and fourth hands similarly follow; and the highest card or the highest trump played takes the trick. The trick is gathered by the partner of the winner; the four cards are made by him into a packet, and placed face downward, at his left hand, on the table. The winner becomes the leader, and the routine is continued until all the cards held are played. Tricks above six in number count a point each upon the score. The score is the record kept of the number of points made. In play the ace is highest, the king, queen, knave, 10, and 9 are also high cards, the 8 is the middle card, and the 7 to the 2 inclusive are low cards. The rank of the cards is in the above order: the queen will take the knave, the 6 will take the 5. The ace, king, queen, and knave of the trump suit are the honors. Any trump will take any plain-suit card. The usual practice is to play with two packs of cards, one of these being shuffled or “made up” by the partner of the dealer during the deal, and afterward placed by him on the left hand of the next dealer. The dealer has the privilege of shuffling before the cards are cut. The play is conducted with reference to combinations of cards held. By the system used the cards are made conversational. In English or short whist the table is complete with six candidates. When a rubber has been played by four of these (elected by cutting), the other two have right of entry. The game is of five points made by tricks and by honors as counted. Four honors held by a player, or in conjunction with his partner, count four points; three honors similarly held count two points. The winners of a game score a point (a single) if the adversaries have three or four points up; two points (a double) against one or two points up; and three points (a treble) against no score. A rubber (two games won in succession, or two won out of three) is always played. Two points for the rubber are added to the score of the rubber-winners. When three games are played, the value of the opponents' score is deducted from the winuers' total. Exposed cards (cards seen when they should not be played) must be left face upward on the table, liable to an adversary's call; a card led out of turn may be called, or, instead, a card of another suit; cards played upon a trick may by any player be ordered to be placed before their respective players; a player may ask his partner if he holds a card of a suit in which he renounces; and any player may demand to see the last trick that has been turned. In American or standard whist four players form a table. These may agree upon or cut for partners. The game is of seven points, made of tricks and penalties. Credit for all points made by both sides is given, the winner of a rubber scoring the entire number of points made against the entire number made by the opponents. Cards are not called, a trick turned cannot be shown, honors are not counted, and conversation during play is not permitted. Penalties for speaking or demonstration, exposure of cards, or leading out of turn, and for revoking are payable in points after the last card of a hand is played and before the cards are cut for the next deal.
- n. Any of several four-player card games, similar to bridge.
- n. Sessions of playing the card game.
- adj. silent
- v. transitive To silence; still.
- v. intransitive To become silent.
- interj. alternative spelling of whisht. Silence! Quiet! Hush! Shhh!
GNU Webster's 1913
- interj. Be silent; be still; hush; silence.
- n. A certain game at cards; -- so called because it requires silence and close attention. It is played by four persons (those who sit opposite each other being partners) with a complete pack of fifty-two cards. Each player has thirteen cards, and when these are played out, the hand is finished, and the cards are again shuffled and distributed.
- v. obsolete To hush or silence.
- v. rare To be or become silent or still; to be hushed or mute.
- adj. Not speaking; not making a noise; silent; mute; still; quiet.
- n. a card game for four players who form two partnerships; a pack of 52 cards is dealt and each side scores one point for each trick it takes in excess of six
- Middle English whist ("silent"). (Wiktionary)
- Alteration (perhaps influenced by the exclamation whist, silence!) of obsolete and dialectal whisk, perhaps from whisk. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“Little wonder, then, that the chief spectator of this agreeable tableau grew nightly more enamored, and while the elders were deep in whist, the young people were playing that still more absorbing game in which hearts are always trumps.”
“The rubber was conducted with all that gravity of deportment and sedateness of demeanour which befit the pursuit entitled 'whist' -- a solemn observance, to which, as it appears to us, the title of 'game' has been very irreverently and ignominiously applied.”
“On this journey he became acquainted with several Americans, with whom he played whist, which is what he was doing when his train pulled up at the St. George's”
“Chapter two hundred and seventy-one of the General Laws is hereby amended by striking out section twenty - two A. as most recently amended by chapters two hundred and twenty-two and two hundred and eighty-three of the acts of nineteen hundred and thirty-six, and inserting in place thereof the following section: — Section 22 A. Noth - ing in this chapter shall authorize the prosecution, arrest or conviction of any person for conducting or promoting, or for allowing to be conducted or promoted, a game of cards commonly called whist or bridge, in connection with which prizes are offered to be won by chance; provided, that the entire proceeds of the charges for admission to such game are donated solely to charitable, civic, educational, fraternal or religious purposes.”
“He admitted, indeed, that for the higher walks of life, such as whist and nap, he had no aptitude.”
“Whereupon the old man went into the bedroom and, unlocking his wooden "whist," which served the purpose of a trunk, he took out something which he brought into the front room.”
“It was not the best kind of whist, but they had taken some trouble to arrive at it.”
“The unmitigated 'whist' may lapse into a 'whish' when he is is transplanted to another soil, and the 'whish' may in course of time pass into a 'whush,' but to the distinct aspirate of the English 'hush,' he never attains.”
“Only an instant did he see it, photographed as by electricity upon the retina, when with a sharp stinging pang and whirring "whist" and thud a second arrow, better aimed, tore through the flesh and muscles just at the outer corner of his left eye, and glanced away down the hill.”
“Another advantage might be gained by this arrangement, for in case they should fall in with some out-post, the girl's knowledge of the Indian tongue, would, perhaps, enable her to deceive the sentinel: and so the sequel proved, for scarcely had they descended one hundred feet, when a low "whist" from the girl, warned them of present danger.”
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