from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A pair of aces and a pair of eights, in a player's hand.
- n. (obsolete) Other various hands, among them a full house of three jacks and two tens.
- n. An ace and an eight as a starting hand in Texas hold 'em
The aces and eights sense is from a legend that Wild Bill Hickok was holding such cards at the time he was killed in 1876. (Wiktionary)
A series of sleepless or hag-ridden nights are not the best preparation for a letter written in a dead man's hand and sealed with a dead man's seal.