from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A French gambling game somewhat like poker.
- n. In French games, a pair royal, or triplet.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In games, three of a kind.
- n. An ancient French game very much like poker, but played with only three cards in each player's hand. It is now superseded by bouillotte.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
The 'brelan' over, she ran to Madame de Maintenon; told her what had just occurred; said that the presence of M. de Vendome at Marly was a continual insult to her; and begged her to solicit the King to forbid M. de Vendome to come there.
I thought I should have fainted, when she said, in a triumphant tone, I have the 'brelan' of kings.
There, from 1802 to 1804, all the bourgeois of Soulanges played at dominoes and a game of cards called "brelan," drank tiny glasses of liqueur or boiled wine, and ate brandied fruits and biscuits; for the dearness of colonial products had banished coffee, sugar, and chocolate.
Monseigneur the Duc de Bourgogne asked the Duc de Montfort if he would play at brelan.
Duchesse de Berry presided in the salon at the public lansquenet and brelan; and the different gaming tables for all the Court.
Playing at brelan one evening, she offered him a stake, and because he would not accept it bantered him, and playfully called him a poltroon.
"And I," said the abbe, at the window, "do not see M. d'Eymeris, who owes me eleven hundred livres from our last game of brelan."
"I have a sequence of four kings" (_brelan de roi quatrieme_), he would say with a laugh when he counted his letters from royal personages.
"At brelan!" cried Montfort, in extreme astonishment; "you cannot mean it!
The King does not wish that we should be dull here at Marly, and has ordered me to make everybody play; and, for fear that nobody should dare to begin, to set, myself, the example; "and with this he began to play at brelan; and the salon was soon filled with gaming tables.