Appendix:Glossary of contract bridge

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The following terms are used in contract bridge, duplicate bridge, and auction bridge. Some of them are also used in Whist, Bid whist, and other trick-taking games.

Contents: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Note: Except for those indicated in bold, all links in this article are internal, i.e. lead to other list entries rather than external articles


Autobridge, a device for learning bridge

Above the line
In rubber bridge, points recorded above a horizontal line on the scorepad. These are extra points, beyond those for tricks bid and made, awarded for holding honor cards in trumps, bonuses for scoring game or slam, for winning a rubber, for overtricks on the declaring side and for undertricks on the defending side, and for fulfilling doubled or redoubled contracts. See Below the line.
American Contract Bridge League
An approach-forcing, natural bidding system popular in the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth.
1) An approach to defending a hand that emphasizes quickly setting up winners and taking tricks. Contrast with Passive.
2) An approach to competitive bidding that emphasizes frequent interference with opponents' bidding sequences.
Adjusted score
In duplicate bridge, a score that penalizes a pair or team that has committed an irregularity, or that compensates a pair or team that has been damaged by an irregularity. The penalty and the compensation need not be commensurate.
Advance cue bid
The cue bid of a first round control that occurs before a partnership has agreed on a strain.
Advance sacrifice
A sacrifice bid made before the opponents have had an opportunity to determine their optimum contract. For example: 1Template:Ds - (1Template:Ss) - Dbl - (5Template:Ss).
Overcaller's partner, especially one who bids following the overcall.
Adverse vulnerability
Vulnerable vs. non-vulnerable. Also called "unfavorable vulnerability."
Aggregate scoring
Deciding the outcome of a contest by totaling the raw points gained or lost on each deal. Also called "total point scoring."
To decide, explicitly, conventionally or by implication, in which strain to play a hand.
An understanding between partners as to the meaning of a particular bid or defensive play.
Alcatraz coup
Declarer's intentional and unethical attempt to locate a finessable card by revoking. If the play is unintentional, it is nevertheless subject to score adjustment.
A method of informing the opponents that partner's bid carries a meaning that they might not expect; alerts are regulated by sponsoring organizations such as the ACBL and the EBU, and by individual clubs or organisers of events. Any method of alerting may be authorised including saying "Alert", displaying an Alert card from a bidding box or 'knocking' on the table.
A call is antipositional if it tends to make the "wrong" partner the declarer. If West opens the bidding, it may be best for South to declare a North-South contract, so that West will have to play from his high cards on opening lead. This positioning may protect South's tenaces. In that case, a call that will make North declarer is antipositional. See wrongside.
In tournaments, to appeal is to request that a committee review a ruling made by a director.
A principle, first used in the Culbertson system, that has survived in modern bidding. The original idea was to abandon the indiscriminate notrump bids that characterized auction bridge in favor of a slower exchange of information via suit bidding.
A marker, usually a large card with an arrow on it, that shows which direction is treated as North at a table in a duplicate event.
1) A call that is not natural, one that carries a coded message not necessarily related to the call's (or to the prior call's) denomination.
2) A bidding system that contains many such calls.
Asking bid
A bid that, by prior agreement, requests information about a feature of partner's hand: for example, number of controls, suit length, or control of a particular suit.
Attacking lead
A lead that instigates an active defense; often, the lead of an honor from a sequence, or a forcing defense.
A defender's desire, or lack thereof, for his side to continue playing a suit. By means of signals, defender encourages or discourages the continuation of the suit.
1) See bidding.
2) Auction bridge, an older form of bridge, replaced by Contract bridge.
A non-digital game for one person, designed to teach bridge (see image).
Automatic squeeze
A squeeze position that succeeds against either opponent. Contrast with positional squeeze.
In matchpoint scoring, an "average" that score awarded to both pairs when for some reason they cannot complete the board and neither pair is at fault; each pair is given a score equal to its own average on all other boards in that session. If one pair is at fault, it receives an "average-minus" (often its average minus 20%). The pair not at fault might receive "average-plus," or average plus 20%. Also see IMP pairs, where "average" refers to the datum used in scoring.
Avoidance play
A play designed to keep a particular defender off lead, often to prevent the lead of a suit through a tenace position in either declarer's hand or dummy.


Back in
To make a partnership's first bid, having previously passed. For example, in 1Template:Hs - (P) - 1NT - (P); 2Template:Cs - (bl), the doubler has backed into the bidding.
Backward finesse
A combination of two finesses in a suit such that the first finesse is "backward" (that is, the reverse of the normal direction).
To keep the bidding open when it is about to be passed out at a low level. For example, if the bidding goes 1Template:Hs - (P) - P - (1NT), the 1NT bid is a balancing action. The balancing bid is often made with a hand of substandard strength, to prevent the opponents from buying the hand too cheaply.
Balanced hand
A hand is said to be balanced if it has a distribution of 4-3-3-3, 4-4-3-2, or 5-3-3-2 (Also defined as "no voids, no singletons, and at most one doubleton"). Notrump bids, when natural, generally denote balanced hands.
To prevent a player from making a bid, either by a penalty caused by an irregularity, or because partnership agreement requires a pass in a given situation. In either case, the player is said to be "barred."
Barometer scoring
In a duplicate event, the posting of contestants' running scores after each round. Knowledge of the current standings often adds excitement to the contest, and can affect the strategies adopted by those in a position to win the event.
Bath coup
A holdup by declarer, to prevent an opponent from continuing a suit. In the classic position, declarer holds Template:SsAJ2 and West leads Template:SsK from Template:SsKQ1098. By playing the 2 on West's K, South makes it impossible for West to continue spades without giving South a free finesse.
Below the line
In rubber bridge, points awarded for tricks bid for and taken are recorded "below the line." These are the points counted towards game. See Above the line.
Bermuda Bowl
The cup awarded to the winner of the international team championship, the most prestigious award in bridge. Also, the championship contest itself.
A declaration of both level and denomination that suggests a final contract. Some bids are instead used as conventions: they carry coded messages and are not normally intended as final contracts.
Bid out of turn
A bid erroneously made when it was another player's turn to bid. Subject to penalty.
Biddable suit
A suit that is, systemically or by partnership agreement, long and strong enough to be bid.
The first phase of a deal, when players establish the final contract by making a series of bids.
Bidding box
A box, physically attached to a table, that contains cards with bids printed on them. By selecting and displaying a card, a player can bid without speaking. Silent bidding removes one source of unauthorized information from the game.
Bidding space
The number of steps available in an auction (see Useful space principle), or the number of steps consumed by a bid. The sequence 1Template:Cs - 1Template:Ds consumes only one step, whereas 1Template:Ds - 2Template:Cs consumes four steps. Because alternative bids are skipped, it often happens that the more steps a bid takes up, the more specific meaning it carries.
Bidding system
The complete set of agreements and conventions assigned to bids, and sequences of bids, by a partnership.
Blackwood convention
Popular bidding convention in contract bridge, used to determine number of partner's aces/kings to evaluate for slam bids.
1) (Adjective) Unprotected by other, usually lower cards in the same suit: "I held the blank king of spades."
2) (Verb) To discard in such a way as to leave a card unprotected: "She blanked the king of spades."
(Slang) A win by the widest possible margin.
(Adjective) A suit that cannot be run without an entry in another suit is blocked. If North holds Template:DsAK and South holds Template:DsQJ10, South cannot cash all three diamond tricks without an entry in another suit. The diamonds are blocked.
1) A device that keeps each player's cards separate for duplicate bridge.
2) The dummy's hand. For example, "You're on the board," means "The lead is in the dummy."
3) See deal.
A form of scoring for team events, similar to matchpoint scoring in pair games, in which every deal carries equal weight. For example, a team receives 1 point if its score is higher than the other team's on a board, 1/2 point for a tie, and 0 points if its score is lower. Now less common than IMP and victory point scoring.
Intermediate cards such as the 9, 8 and 7, that contribute to a suit's trick-taking potential.
In bridge scoring, beyond points for bid tricks taken, which are awarded for making a contract, the additional points awarded for making a doubled contract, or for making doubled or redoubled overtricks. There are different bonus amounts at the partscore, game, small slam, and grand slam levels. The size of most bonuses depends on the vulnerability. Bonus amounts are different in rubber bridge and duplicate bridge. See Bridge scoring.
1) (Noun) The basic six tricks that must be taken by the declaring side. The first six "book" tricks are always assumed and are not taken into account in bidding or scoring. Thus, a contract at the 1-level commits declarer to take at least 7 (that is, 6 + 1) tricks, and provides trick points only for the trick above book. The term apparently originated from the whist practice of arranging the first six tricks into a stack called a "book."
2) (Noun) The number of tricks that the defensive side must take so as to hold declarer to his contract. If the contract is 4Template:Ss, defenders' book is 3.
3) (Verb, usually passive) Slang. As declarer, to have lost the maximum number of tricks without being set. At 4Template:Ss, declarer is "booked" when he has lost three tricks.
At matchpoint scoring, the lowest possible score on a board. Also, zero.
A group of entries in a tournament that will eventually have one winner. The grouping is often done on the basis of master points.
1) (Noun) The distribution of cards in a suit between two (often unseen) hands: "I got a 4-1 spade break." An even break occurs when the cards are distributed evenly or nearly so, such as 3-3 or 4-2. A bad break, connoting a distribution that is difficult to handle, suggests an unexpectedly uneven distribution, such as 5-1 or 6-0. See distribution.
2) (Verb) To be divided between two hands. "The spades broke 3-2."
3) (Verb) To lead a particular suit for the first time during a particular deal.
4) (Verb) Slang. To play for and find a particular distribution, usually the most favorable. "I broke the spades."
Bridge maxims
A compilation of short "laws", "rules" and rules-of-thumb advice; often, not always, valid.
Bridge World, The
A monthly magazine, the oldest continuously published periodical concerning contract bridge, and the game's most prestigious technical journal.
Broken sequence
A sequence of honor cards, one or more of which is missing, for example AQJ.
Business double
A penalty double. Contrast with various competitive and informatory doubles such as takeout double and negative double.
(Slang) A very weak hand. Sometimes paired with the name of a long suit: for example, "club bust" to denote a hand with long clubs and very little high card strength. See also Yarborough.
A card that is needed for some purpose is said to be busy. For example, cards that a defender is trying to preserve while declarer executes a squeeze are "busy." Contrast with idle.
A method of overall scoring in duplicate bridge where every result is subtracted from a datum (average or median) score and converted to IMPs using a table defined by the WBF.
1) A round of an event during which a team or pair is not scheduled to play.
2) A location, such as a chair or stand, where boards are kept when not in use during an event.


A non-playing person designated to move boards between tables during a tournament.
1) See Cross-Imp scoring
2) A tournament in which bettors bid on participating pairs or teams. The proceeds from the auction are distributed partly as prizes to the top finishers, partly to the bettors who successfully bid on them. A pair or team can typically buy an interest in itself.
Any bid, pass, double, or redouble in the bidding stage.
An approach to bidding in which a player bids his shorter suit prior to his longer suit. A feature of the Blue Team Club and the Roman Club.
1) The partner who makes the decision for a partnership in certain bidding situations, such as ace-asking sequences.
2) The person representing and/or coaching the team; can be playing or non-playing captain (NPC), i.e. participating in the play or not.
Card reading
The act of determining the distribution of cards in unseen hands, and the location of high cards therein, by analyzing the bidding, play and other clues.
The defensive signaling used by a partnership.
In team events, a portion of a score from an earlier session between two teams that is applied to a subsequent match between the same teams.
To take a trick with a card that is currently the highest in the suit, thought certain to succeed, or to take all available winners in a suit.
Cavendish variation
A version of Chicago, with declarer's side not vulnerable on the second and third hands, as in the standard version.
Canadian Bridge Federation.
Change of suit
A bid in a new suit, as 1Template:Ss in the sequence 1Template:Ds - 1Template:Hs; 1Template:Ss.
A form of bridge in which a rubber is completed every four deals, and the vulnerability is different in each of those deals (dealer's side is vulnerable on the second and third deals). The scoring and sequence of dealer and vulnerability used in duplicate bridge are derived from those used in Chicago bridge. Chicago is said to have been devised by commuters who played bridge on daily train journeys, where the time available for play was limited by the length of the trip.
Centre Hand Opponent; a slang, uncomplimentary term for one's partner, or partners generally.
A suit with enough honor strength to play well unaided by partner's cards (but not solid) is chunky. Normally said of four-card suits. AQJ10 is a chunky suit; AQ96 is not chunky.
A statement by declarer about how the remaining unplayed tricks will be won or lost. Normally the claiming player exposes his hand and describes the sequence of play for the remaining tricks (but such plays as finesses, unless already proven, are disallowed). A claim is best made only when the play of the rest of the hand is obvious. Claims are often unadvisable: apart from the possibility of a mistaken analysis, it can take longer to explain the line of play than to play it. See also concession.
Clear a suit
Knock out an opponent's high-card control of a suit, or unblock one's own high cards.
Closed hand
Declarer's hand (as distinct from the dummy, which is faced or open).
Closed room
In a team match, a room where two of the pairs compete, and in which spectators are not allowed.
Making improper remarks to mislead the opponents, or asking improper questions designed to suggest a defensive play.
A contract that a player cannot fail to make is cold.
1) See suit combination.
2) finesse: See double finesse in finesse.
Combination play
A line of play that offers more than one chance to take additional tricks: for example, playing to drop an honor in a longer suit and then finessing for an honor in a shorter suit.
A defensive signal that encourages partner to continue a suit, usually by means of the rank of the card used to follow suit.
Comic notrump
A notrump overcall that shows a weak hand with a long suit, to which the overcaller can escape if doubled. Also known as Gardener 1NT.
1) The placement of the lead in one or the other of the two partnership hands, so as to make a subsequent lead from the more advantageous hand.
2) The means of conveying a message to partner via the bidding. The only legal means of communication is through the calls themselves, rather than by the use of hesitations or mannerisms. Often generalized as communications in both senses.
Comparative scoring
The method of scoring used in matchpoint or Board-a-Match events. The metric used is not the number of points earned on a particular deal, as it is when using quantitative scoring, but the number of pairs that have been out-scored.
Competitive auction
A bidding sequence which involves both partnerships. Also, competitive bidding.
A statement by a player as to the number of remaining tricks that he must lose. (See claim.)
To act after an opponent's irregularity without arranging for the penalty specified in the Laws to be applied.
Congratulatory jack
The unnecessary play (by follow-suit or by discard) of a jack following partner's exceptionally successful action. More often used by the defense, but possible as a play from dummy.
1) Bidding that is aimed at reaching a side's optimum contract, as distinct from calls intended to interfere with the opponents' bidding.
2) Constructive raise: by partnership agreement, a single raise of a major suit opening that shows more strength than usual.
1) The statement of the pair who has won the bidding, that they will take at least the given number of tricks. The contract consists of two components: the level, stating the number of tricks to be taken (in addition to the book tricks), and the denomination, denoting the trump suit (or its absence in a notrump bid). The last bid in the bidding phase denotes the final contract.
2) Short for Contract Bridge as opposed to other forms of bridge, such as Auction bridge.
1) A feature of a hand which prevents the opponents from taking immediate tricks in a suit. Aces are termed "first-round" controls and kings are termed "second-round" controls. In trump contracts, voids are also considered first-round controls and singletons second-round controls.
2) (Said of trump contracts) Declarer's ability to manage the trump suit successfully. To lose control usually means being forced to shorten one's trumps so much that the opponents can subsequently control the play of the hand.
A bid that shows control of a particular suit. Often a cue bid, but not all cue bids are control-bids.
An agreement between partners on the meaning of a bid or sequence of bids, such that the meaning is not necessarily related to the length and strength of bid suits. Many bidding conventions are artificial; see, for example, Bridge conventions (slam seeking). Compare with Treatment. Also, an agreement that a particular defensive play has a special meaning.
Convention card
A form filled out by a partnership that shows the bidding and play conventions being used. Normally used during tournaments.
To change the effect of a call. For example, passing partner's overcall of 2Template:Ds when playing Michaels cue bids converts the overcall from a request to bid a major suit to a contract of 2Template:Ds. There are many other applications: for example, to pass partner's takeout double is to convert it to a penalty double.
In the bidding, to choose (usually) partner's first bid suit; in that case, a correction is equivalent to a preference.
1) (Noun) The number of cards held in a suit or suits, usually said of an opponent's hand.
2) (Verb) To determine, by inference or by follow-suit, the number of cards held in a suit by an opponent.
3) (Noun) In squeeze play, the number of tricks that declarer must lose before the squeeze can function.
Count signal
A defensive card play that shows whether the player has an even or odd number of cards in a suit.
1) Any extremely skillful play.
2) The shortening of trumps in (usually) declarer's hand to bring about a position in which the lead of a side suit will cope with the defenders' trump holding.
Coup en passant
The lead of a side suit through an opponent who holds a higher trump so as to score a lower trump in the third hand.
Coup without a name
See Scissors coup. "Coup without a name" is an earlier term for the coup, conferred by Ely Culbertson.
Cover card
A card (honor or extra trump) which is known to compensate one of partner's losers; for example, a king in trumps covers partner's trump loser.
(Slang) To make a penalty double.
Crocodile coup
On defense, second hand's play of a higher card than apparently necessary, so as to obtain the lead. The play is intended to prevent fourth hand from being forced into the lead to make a return favorable to declarer. The name suggests a crocodile opening its maw to swallow up partner's winning card.
To enter the opposite hand. Normally used of dummy or declarer's hand: "He crossed to dummy in diamonds."
A playing technique in trump contracts, where extra tricks are gained by ruffing in both hands alternately.
Cross-IMP scoring
A form of IMP scoring in pairs tournaments, where each pair's score is determined as an (averaged) sum of differences to all other scores (rather than to a single datum score). Also known as X-Imps or Calcutta.
Cue bid
1) A bid of the opponents' suit in a competitive auction. Usually a conventional, forcing bid that shows strength or an unusual hand, or a particular distribution.
2) A bid that shows a control in a suit (usually with an Ace or King, sometimes with a void), but does not indicate length or strength in the suit otherwise. See control bid. Partnership agreements indicate when in an uncontested auction a bid is considered a cue bid. Usually used in exploring for a slam contract (see Bridge conventions (slam seeking)), or for showing stoppers needed for a notrump game.
Culbertson system
The earliest dominant bidding system, developed by Ely and Josephine Culbertson. Its principal features were an approach-forcing bidding style, four-card majors, strong two-bids and the use of an honor trick table to evaluate hand strength.
Curse of Scotland
The Template:Ds9. The origin of the term is not known with certainty.
Cutthroat bridge
A form of three-handed bridge.


Danger hand
(Usually in reference to the defenders.) An opponent who, if he obtains the lead, can damage declarer's prospects.
The mean or median of raw scores on a deal. The datum is used as a basis for calculating IMPs for the participating teams or pairs. The datum may be trimmed by removing extreme scores at either end of the distribution, a procedure whose effect on a mean or on a median depends on the degree of skewness in the raw scores.
(Usually in reference to the dummy.) A hand that has no card of entry.
The set of particular 52 cards as distributed to each player, and the bidding and play based on those cards. Also called board or hand.
The player who deals the cards and bids first. In duplicate bridge, cards are dealt only at the outset of the session and the deal is preserved during the session by the use of boards. The dealer for each board is determined by a mark that indicates the dealer's position on the physical board.
The 52 cards used in bridge.
The contract in which a hand is played.
See D-I.
Of the pair that makes the final bid in the auction, the player who first bid that call's strain. The declarer plays the cards in his own hand as well as dummy's cards.
Deep finesse
A finesse against two or more cards.
(Said of the contract). To prevent declarer from taking the number of tricks called for by his contract. Also, set.
The pair that tries to defeat the contract.
Declarer's opponents or their line of play.
Defensive bidding
A bid or sequence of bids designed to hinder the opponents' bidding, including sacrifices.
Postponed, as the jump preference in the auction 1Template:Hs - 1Template:Ss; 2Template:Ds - 3Template:Hs. Many bids have a different meaning depending on whether or not they are made at the first opportunity.
Denomination (also 'Strain')
Component of a bid that denotes the proposed trump suit or notrump. Thus, there are five denominations (see Rank (2)).
Acronym for Double Even Pass Odd. Conventional method for bidding over interference with Blackwood.
Deschapelles coup
On defense, the lead of an unsupported honor so as to create an entry for partner.
To establish tricks in a suit, usually by forcing out the opponents' stoppers.
Devil's coup
In the endgame, the play of a side suit through a defender to create an overruff and a subsequent trump finesse.
(Abbreviation of Declarative-Interrogative.) 4NT as a general slam try that asks partner to show features. D-I is incorporated in several bidding systems, including Neapolitan, Blue Team Club and Kaplan-Sheinwold. 4NT D-I is distinguished from Blackwood by means of the bidding context.
A player's position at the bridge table (North, East, South or West).
Direct position
Usually said of a bid that is made immediately following RHO's bid. Contrast with balance.
Referee (in duplicate bridge). The director enforces the rules, assigns penalties for violations, and oversees the progress of the game. The director is also responsible for the final scoring. At a tournament there may be several directors, reporting to a Head Director. In ACBL-sponsored events, a director's ruling as to bridge fact may be appealed; a ruling as to discipline, so as to maintain an orderly event, may not.
1) (Verb) To play a card that is neither of the suit led, nor trump, and that therefore cannot win the trick.
2) (Noun) The card so played.
Discouraging card
A carding signal that discourages partner from leading a particular suit. Contrast with


Discovery play
A play, either by declarer or by the defense, intended to obtain information about the location of other cards.
1) The number of cards in each suit in a player's hand, usually expressed as a series of 4 numbers. A distribution of 4=6=2=1 means 4 spades, 6 hearts, 2 diamonds, and 1 club. Also called a "Hand pattern".
2) The number of cards in one suit as distributed in four (or two) hands, expressed as series of four (or two) numbers.
3) The degree to which a player's hand consists of particularly long and short suits.
Distribution point
A measure of a hand's strength due to the length or shortness of suits. See Hand evaluation.
A conventional defense to notrump opening bids.
Acronym for Double Odd Pass Even. Conventional method for bidding over interference with Blackwood.
Abbreviation of Double 0 Pass 1. Conventional method for bidding over interference with Blackwood. Pronounced "dopey."
A call that increases penalties if the opponents fail to make their contract, but that increases the bonuses if they make it. A player can double only a contract bid by the opposition. Often used conventionally for purposes other than to increase the penalties.
Double dummy
(Adjective or adverb.) Said of a play that is made as though all four hands were visible. Compare with single dummy.
Double finesse
A finesse for two missing cards.
Double into game
To double a part score such that, if the contract is fulfilled, the total of the doubled trick scores will exceed 100 points.
Double knockout
A team event that requires two losses for elimination.
Double negative
An agreement regarding a second negative bid by a player who has already made one. Normally used regarding sequences that follow strong, forcing opening bids.
Double raise
A raise of two levels, such as 1Template:Ss - 3Template:Ss.
Double squeeze
A squeeze in which each opponent must guard a different suit, and both opponents must guard a third suit.
A holding of exactly two cards in a suit.
1) A contract that is defeated is said to be down.
2) (Followed by a number) The number of tricks by which a contract fails: for example, "Down two."
Down the line
To bid the higher of two adjacent suits before the lower. For example, of two five-card majors, the spade suit is normally bid before the heart suit. Contrast with Up the line.
To extract, usually trumps. To remove the opponents' trump cards is to "draw trumps."
Drive out
To force a stopper from an opponent's hand, usually by repeatedly leading the suit.
1) (Verb) To fall under a higher card: "The Template:SsQ dropped under the Template:SsK."
2) (Noun) That occurrence itself: "He played for the drop instead of finessing."
A play technique in which a player does not immediately play a card that might take a trick, but plays a small card instead.
1) The partner of the declarer, whose cards are placed face up on the table and played by the declarer. Dummy has few rights and may not participate in choices concerning the play of the hand.
2) The dummy's hand as exposed on the table.
Dummy play
The play of the hand by declarer. The apparent contradiction is due to the fact that declarer plays both declarer's cards and the dummy's.
Dummy reversal
A playing technique in trump contracts that gains extra tricks by ruffing in the hand that began with the longer trumps.
To lose a match deliberately, usually so as to assist another team or pair in the event. A subject of considerable controversy in the 1990s and beyond.
Duplicate bridge
A form of bridge where every deal is played at several tables, by several pairs, and their scores on each deal are subsequently compared. At minimum, two tables (four pairs) are required for a duplicate bridge match. Each entry might be a pair, or a team consisting of two or more pairs; the type of scoring varies accordingly. The hands of each deal are kept in metal or plastic containers called boards that are passed between tables.
Duplication of values
The possession of values in a single suit, in both partners' hands. Usually said of high card values in one hand paired with a singleton or void in partner's hand. Such a holding is normally undesirable: Template:SsKJ9 facing a void is much less useful than Template:SsKJ9 facing Template:SsQ4.


Eastern Scientific
A bidding style that developed in the Eastern United States, particularly the New York region. It is characterized by five-card majors with a forcing one notrump response and limit raises, strong notrump with Jacoby transfers, and strong (but not game forcing) two-over-one responses.
European Bridge League, the official organising body of bridge in Europe.
English Bridge Union, the official organising body of bridge in England.
The play of first the higher, then the lower of two cards of the same suit on separate tricks to encourage or, by prior agreement, to discourage (see upside-down signals) partner's continuation of a suit; or to signal possession of (normally) an even number of cards in the suit at the time the higher card is played.
Acronym for Every Hand An Adventure, a bidding style that emphasizes very weak notrump opening bids (often 10-12 HCP), four-card majors, and undisciplined weak-two bids.
Eight ever, nine never
A Bridge maxim that advises players when to finesse for a missing queen. With eight cards in the suit, always ("ever") finesse; but with nine cards, never finesse, rather play for the queen to drop under the play of the ace and king. Experienced players often ignore this advice in favor of considerations such as the danger hand, combination play, and the known or inferred distribution of other suits.
The removal, by playing a suit or suits, of safe exit cards from defenders' hands, normally in preparation for an endplay. The classic (but not the only) example is to leave an endplayed defender with the choice of conceding a ruff and discard or giving declarer a free finesse.
To win a trick by ruffing with a trump lower in rank than an opponent's trump. The Coup en passant is an example of an elopement.
An agreement that the meaning of bids or card signals may change as more information about a deal becomes available. For example, when declarer shows out of a suit, the defenders can tell whether the rank of West's lowest remaining card in the suit is even or odd (and declarer probably does not have that information). The defenders might have agreed that if West's lowest remaining card is even, normal attitude signals will be in effect, but if it is odd, upside-down signals will be used. In such a case, the defenders' agreement is encrypted.
The layout of the cards when just a few tricks remain to be played. In a "four-card ending," each player has four cards left. Such positions can be of special interest because squeezes and other endplays tend to occur near the end of the play.
A play which forces a particular opponent to win a trick, so that that opponent must then make a favorable lead. That player is said to be "endplayed". Normally, the player who is endplayed is a defender. Although the word implies that the play occurs toward the end of a hand, it often occurs earlier, and in exceptional cases the opening leader can be said to be "endplayed at Trick One."
1) To win a trick in the opposite hand, thereby giving it the right to lead to the next trick.
2) To make the first call for a partnership after the opponents have bid.
3) To join a bridge competition.
1) A card that allows a partnership to win in one hand after leading from the other. Entries are vital to communication.
2) A seating assignment in a bridge competition. Entries designate the participants' initial table number, direction at that table, and (if applicable) section.
Entry-shifting squeeze
A squeeze in which the declarer decides whether to overtake the squeeze card or to let it hold the trick, depending on LHO's play.
Entry squeeze
A squeeze that puts pressure on a holding that interferes with declarer's entries.
Equal level conversion
An agreement concerning rebids after take-out doubles. Traditionally, the bid of a new suit by the player who has made a take-out double is considered forcing. Under the equal level conversion agreement, the bid of a new suit by the doubler is not forcing if it is at the same level as advancer's bid. So, equal level conversion means that in the sequence 1Template:Ss - (Dbl) - P - (2Template:Ds); P - (2Template:Hs), 2Template:Hs is considered non-forcing.
Cards in one hand that are adjacent in rank and thus have equal trick-taking power.
Escape suit
A long suit to which a bidder can escape if necessary or desirable. The bidder of a comic notrump might run to his long suit if doubled.
To make winners of the remaining cards in a suit by playing or forcing out higher cards.
1) A split with the same number of cards in each hand. A 2-2 split is an even split.
2) Of the number of cards in a suit found in a hand: two cards, four cards, and so on.
A duplicate bridge contest.
Exclusion bid
A bid, such as 2Template:Ds in the Roman Club system, that shows length in all suits except the one named.
Exclusion Blackwood
An agreement that responder to a Blackwood bid will show the number of aces held outside a particular suit.
Exit card
A card that is used to put a different hand on lead, normally to avoid making a self-destructive lead in another suit.
A term used to describe someone who plays bridge better than the person using the term.
Exposed card
A card whose suit and rank become known through an irregularity. An exposed card may be subject to penalty.
Extra values
Values (in the form of High card points, shortage or cover cards), which are in addition to the values that a player has promised so far in the bidding.


1) (Noun) The front of a card; the side that displays its suit and rank.
2) (Verb) To turn a card so that its face is visible to other players.
Face card
A king, queen, or jack. (Compare with honor.)
The adjustment of matchpoint scores to correct for dissimilar conditions. For example, a game played with a Mitchell movement might have an extra N-S pair, causing a bye round for N-S. The top is therefore lower for N-S pairs than for E-W pairs, and the N-S scores are multiplied by a fraction (or "factor") to make them commensurate with the E-W scores.
To be captured by a higher card. See drop.
False preference
A return to partner's first-bid suit despite a longer holding in the second suit. Usually intended to give partner an opportunity for another bid.
False sacrifice
See Phantom sacrifice.
A card played with the intention of deceiving an opponent as to one's true holding. Also, the act of making such a play.
Fast arrival
A style of bidding under which the fewer bids used to reach a contract (usually said of game contracts), the weaker the bidder's hand. Fast arrival holds that 1Template:Ss - 2Template:Ds; 2Template:Ss - 4Template:Ss is weaker than 1Template:Ss - 2Template:Ds; 2Template:Ss - 3Template:Cs; 3NT - 4Template:Ss. Compare with slow arrival.
An honor or shortness in a suit. Conventional bids such as splinter bids or D-I are intended to show or elicit features.
(Slang) Short for "fertilizer," a very weak opening bid. A systemic Treatment in strong pass systems.
All the players in a bridge event, as in "with the field" to describe an action that most players will take, and "against the field" to describe an unusual action.
Field a psych
Deciding correctly that partner has psyched in the absence of a call that reveals the psych. Sometimes used when that decision is made on the basis of unauthorized information or an undisclosed partnership understanding.
Mid-rank cards that strengthen a suit. See body.
Final contract
The last bid made on a hand.
A technique that attempts to gain a trick or tricks by taking advantage of a favorable lie of the opponents' cards.
1) A long suit (usually 8 cards or more) in two combined hands, that might be used as trumps.
2) General term for two hands that are productive together (i.e., that have at least one fitting suit and few wasted values). Compare with Misfit.
A bid in a suit that shows length and strength in the bid suit plus a fit for partner's suit. Jump shifts in competition are often defined as fit-bids. Compare with Fragment bid and Mixed (definition 2).
Five-card majors
An agreement that an opening bid in spades or hearts promises at least five cards in the suit. The alternative agreement is four-card majors.
1) (Noun) An undeservedly poor result, usually caused by an opponent's error or eccentric play that happens to turn out well.
2) (Verb) To be the victim of a fix: "We were fixed on Board 8."
1) Flat hand: A hand that lacks distributional features such as a singleton, a void, or a very long suit. Often, 4-3-3-3 distribution.
2) Flat board: A deal in duplicate bridge that results in scores across the field that are identical, or nearly so.
1) To be followed by two or three passes. For example, West's spade bid "floated around" to South in 1Template:Ss - (P) - P.
2) To fail to cover the card led, usually by two consecutive hands. "South floated the Template:SsQ to East."
Flower movement
An adaptation of the Howell movement in which the players, rather than the boards, progress regularly from table to table. Also known as "Endless Howell."
Follow suit
To play a card of the same suit as the one that was first led to the trick. Failure to follow suit when one can do so constitutes a revoke.
Force to
To bid with the intention of causing the bidding to proceed to a particular level. For example: "In this auction, 2Template:Cs forced to game," or "My reverse forced to the three-level."
Forcing bid
A bid that, by partnership understanding, requires the bidder's partner to make another bid. A forcing bid is not necessarily a strong bid. It is legal to pass partner's forcing bid, and players occasionally do so if they believe it advantageous on a given hand, but it is damaging to partnership confidence.
Forcing defense
The lead and subsequent continuation of a suit that the defenders believe declarer will have to ruff in the long trump hand. The strategy is to shorten declarer's trump holding so as to leave the defenders in control of the hand. See Tap.
Forcing notrump
An agreement that a 1NT response to a 1Template:Hs or 1Template:Ss opening is a forcing bid.
Forcing pass
A pass in a competitive auction that requires partner to either make another bid or to double the opponents' current bid. Experienced partnerships often have agreements about differences in strength shown by bidding immediately, as distinct from making a forcing pass and then bidding over partner's double (pass and pull).
A tenace.
Fouled board
A board whose cards are not distributed as they were when first played, due to returning the cards to their slots erroneously.
Four-card majors
An agreement that an opening bid of 1Template:Hs or 1Template:Ss promises four cards in the suit bid. The usual alternative is five-card majors. The four-card major agreement was standard during the first four decades of contract bridge, but has since given way to five-card majors in "standard" systems such as 2/1 game forcing and Standard American. It is used in the Blue Team Club and EHAA.
Four-deal bridge
See Chicago.
1) A player needed to complete a table, usually said of rubber bridge.
2) Of four-card suit length: for example, Q987 is referred to as "queen-fourth."
Fourth hand
The fourth player with an opportunity to bid, or to play to a trick.
Fourth suit forcing
1) The initial use of a bid of the fourth suit as forcing to some level.
2) An agreement that the partnership's bid of the fourth suit, in addition to its forcing nature, is possibly artificial.
Fragment bid
A second-round jump bid (usually a double jump) that by agreement shows a fit with partner's last-bid suit and shortness in another suit. Under this agreement, in 1Template:Cs - 1Template:Hs; 3Template:Ss the bid of 3Template:Ss is a fragment bid, showing a fit for hearts and a singleton or void in diamonds. The suit of the fragment bid is often three cards long. Compare with splinter bid.
(Also, "freak hand.") A hand with a very long suit or suits. Most would regard a hand with two six card suits as a freak.
Free bid
A bid that is made when a pass would still allow partner to make a bid. Normally used of a bid that is made after partner has opened the bidding and RHO has overcalled. Compare with Negative free bid.
Free finesse
A position in which a player leads up to an opponent's tenace, solving that opponent's possible guess. The term is normally used when the player is forced to make that lead.
A frozen suit is one that neither side can play without damage to its own holding in the suit. Declarer can sometimes duck the defense's lead to freeze the suit. The following suit is frozen: Template:BridgeSuit


Gambling 3NT
An opening bid of 3NT. The bidder hopes to make the contract by means of a long minor suit rather than by a preponderance of high cards.
A contract, bid and made, worth 100 points or more. The undoubled game contracts are 3NT (40 for the first trick + 30 each for the second and third); 4Template:Hs and 4Template:Ss in the majors (4 tricks × 30 points per trick); 5Template:Cs and 5Template:Ds in the minors (5 tricks × 20 points per trick). Game can also be made via a doubled or redoubled contract: e.g., 2Template:Ss doubled is worth 2 × (2 tricks × 30 points per trick) = 120 points. The pair bidding and making the game is awarded a bonus. See Bridge scoring.
Game force
A bid that asks partner not to pass before the partnership's bidding has reached game (or the opponents have been doubled at a level high enough to compensate). Some treatments relax the requirement: for example, the agreement that in the sequence 1M - 2m, the 2m response is a game force unless the suit is rebid. So, in 1Template:Ss - 2Template:Ds; 2Template:Hs - 3Template:Ds, 3Template:Ds would cancel the game-forcing message of the 2Template:Ds bid.
Game try
A bid, often in a side suit, which invites the partner to bid a game if he has extra values in the context of the prior bidding. A help-suit game try is made in the suit where one hopes that partner holds cover cards. A short-suit game try is made in the suit where one hopes that the partnership has no duplication of values.
Said of a card or cards that have been established.
Goren system
A system of bidding, dominant in the United States from the 1940s through the 1960s, based on the Culbertson system. The principal difference between the two systems was in hand evaluation: Culbertson used honor tricks to assess a hand's strength whereas Goren used High card points.
A style of dealing, usually in rubber and Chicago games, where the cards are not thoroughly shuffled between deals and are dealt in groups. It results in "wild" card distributions.
Grand coup
A trump coup in which the cards ruffed in the long trump hand are already winners.
Grand slam
A contract to win all thirteen tricks. Bidding and making a grand slam scores significant bonus points.
Grand slam force (GSF)
A method of determining whether the partnership holds the top trump honors when the bid of a grand slam is a possibility. In its original form, the GSF was initiated with a bid of 5NT, asking partner to bid a grand slam with two of the top three honors in the trump suit. Depending on the prior bidding, other bids are often used in place of 5NT, and there is a variety of schemes for responding to the GSF. See Josephine.
Grosvenor gambit
A play that creates no direct advantage and might lose. Its principal features are that an opponent will not suspect that such an inept play has been made, and that once the opponent realizes what has occurred, he will be frustrated and angry (and therefore less effective) during subsequent hands. The ploy was first described in a satiric story by Frederick B. Turner in the June 1973 issue of The Bridge World.
A holding that prevents an opponent from taking a trick or tricks. See stopper, guard squeeze.


1) The cards held by one player.
2) The player holding the cards, as in "Third hand bid 1Template:Ss."
3) The entire deal.
Hand pattern
See distribution.
Help-suit game try
A bid of a side suit after a single raise, hoping to reach game. For example, after 1Template:Hs - 2Template:Hs, opener might rebid 3Template:Cs with a side club suit. The bid tells partner where high cards will be most helpful, and requests partner to take positive action with strength in that suit. Otherwise, the bid requests partner to sign off (in this example, by bidding 3Template:Hs). See short-suit game try and game try.
A brief pause before a bid or play, considered somewhat shorter than a Huddle.
High-low signal
See Echo.
High card
1) An honor card.
2) The highest ranking card in a suit at any point during the play.
High card points (HCP)
A method for evaluating a hand's strength, where every honor card is assigned a numeric value. See Hand evaluation.
1) To keep declarer to a particular number of tricks, usually the number required to make the contract.
2) To have in one's hand a particular card or set of cards.
3) (Of a card) To win a trick although a higher card is outstanding.
Hold up
1) (Verb) To defer taking a winning card until an advantageous point in the hand, usually in reference to tricks that the opponents have led to. There are various purposes for holding up a winner, but it is frequently done to force the opponents to use their entries too soon.
2) (Noun) The act of holding up a winner.
1) The cards in a player's hand at a particular point in the play (often, at the start of the play).
2) The cards in a specific suit in a player's hand.
Honor card (spelled honour where UK English is dominant)
An ace, king, queen, jack or ten.
Honor bonus
At rubber bridge and Chicago, a scoring bonus. The bonus is 100 points for one hand holding four of the five trump suit honors. The bonus is 150 points for all five trump suit honors, or all four aces in a NT contract.
Honor tricks
A method of hand evaluation used in the Culbertson system, which assigns point values to honors and combinations of honors. For example, AK is two honor tricks, AQ is 1 1/2 honor tricks, KQ is 1 honor trick, and so on.
(Slang) To finesse, or the finesse itself.
House player
An employee of a bridge club who is available as a fourth.
Howell movement
A plan for determining which pairs will meet on a given round in a matchpoint game, and which boards they will play.
1) (Noun) A pause prior to a bid or play of longer than usual duration.
2) (Verb) To take that lengthy pause.
Acronym for Highly Unusual Methods.


(Said of a card) Available as a discard; not required for purposes such as guarding the opponents' suit or interfering with their communications.
IMP (International Match Points)
1) (Noun) A method of scoring in a team match that compares a result on a board to that obtained at the other table and that converts the difference to IMPs using a table defined by WBF. The IMP scale's effect is to reduce the influence of very large differences, thus making it less likely that the outcome of an entire match will depend on one board only.
2) (Verb) To perform the IMP score conversion.
A breach of ethical conduct or etiquette; an action that violates the Proprieties.
The form of duplicate bridge that uses IMPs as a scoring method, as distinct from a game scored at matchpoints.
In back of
A card or holding that is to the left of, or behind, or over another. To say that the Template:SsA is in back of the Template:SsK is to say that the ace is to the left of the king, or behind it, or over it; so, the Template:SsA is in a position to directly capture the Template:SsK.
A form of duplicate bridge, scored at matchpoints, in which each player is paired with a different partner on each round.
Informatory double
A double that is intended to convey information rather than to exact a penalty from the opponents. Such doubles include the takeout double, the negative double, the support double, the responsive double and the lead directing double, although the latter is intended to convey information and to penalize.
In front of
A card or holding that is to the right of or under another. To say that the Template:SsA is in front of the Template:SsK is to say that the ace is to the right of the king, or under it, and normally cannot capture the Template:SsK if it is guarded.
Insufficient bid
A bid that is not higher than the immediately preceding bid, and therefore illegal.
The bonus for making a doubled or redoubled contract is sometimes referred to as the "insult" or as being "for the insult".
Insurance bid
A bid, usually a sacrifice bid, intended to keep the opponents from playing their (presumably optimum) contract. The bidder hopes that insurance premium – the penalty due to the sacrifice bid – will be less than the damage from allowing the opponents to make their contract.
A call, such as an overcall or an initial preempt, that is intended to make it more difficult for the opponents to bid to their best contract.
1) Nines, eights and sevens are sometimes termed "intermediate cards." See body.
2) A jump overcall that by agreement may be made with a hand of opening bid strength and a long suit is termed an "intermediate jump overcall."
3) An opening two-bid that by agreement may be made with values just short of those required for a game-forcing opening bid is termed an "intermediate two-bid."
Inverted minors
A treatment that uses the single raise of a minor suit as strong, and a double raise as preemptive.
A bid which invites the partner to bid on to game or slam if he has extra values. It is a non-forcing bid by definition. Compare semi-forcing bid.
International Popular Bridge Monthly. A British bridge magazine.
Iron Duke, Not through the
A hackneyed phrase that describes the play of a high card by a player whose high card holding is led through; or, that player's statement.
A breach of procedure, as described in the Laws and Proprieties, in bidding or play. If one is available, a director should be called to the table to make a ruling.
(Said of a menace card) To isolate a menace in squeeze play is to arrange that only one opponent can guard one of declarer's threat suits. The play is conceptually similar to transferring a control.


Jacoby transfers
Responses to opening bids of 1NT or 2NT that show the next higher suit and that request opener to bid that suit. Players who use Jacoby transfers usually agree that after an opening 1NT, 2Template:Ds is a transfer to hearts, and 2Template:Hs is a transfer to spades; similarly, 3Template:Ds and 3Template:Hs over an opening 2NT. They retain 2Template:Cs as Stayman and reserve 2Template:Ss for some other purpose. Opener simply completes the transfer with a typical NT opening bid. With an unusually good hand for partner's suit, opener either completes the transfer with a jump bid or bids some other suit, deferring the acceptance (often called a super-acceptance). These transfers were first described in a series of articles by Ollie Willner in Bridge Tidningen in the early 1950s, and were popularized for English speakers in an 1956 Bridge World article by Oswald Jacoby.
Jacoby 2NT
By agreement, a forcing raise of a major suit opening bid, used in conjunction with limit jump raises. Opener is requested to rebid in a suit where he holds a singleton so that responder can better evaluate the fit.
Jam the bidding
(Slang) To preempt.
The discard of an honor, often by a defender, and usually to unblock a suit.
An alternative term, popular in Europe, for the grand slam force. The convention was developed by Ely Culbertson, and popularized in a late 1930s Bridge World article by Josephine Culbertson.
Journalist leads
Opening lead convention, mainly against notrump contracts, designed to show both what the leader has, and to request specific partner actions in return.
Jump bid
A bid made at a level higher than the lowest level at which that suit could be legally bid.
Jump overcall
An overcall made at higher than the minimally legal level: for example, 1Template:Hs - (2Template:Ss). Originally treated as strong bids, it has become standard to treat jump overcalls as weak, preemptive bids.
Jump preference
A preference to partner's first-bid suit, made at a level higher than the minimally legal level. In the following sequence, 3Template:Hs is a jump preference: 1Template:Hs - 1Template:Ss; 2Template:Ds - 3Template:Hs. For many years, the jump preference was treated as invitational except in support of opener's minor, when it was treated as forcing. As of 2001, however, most experts treat all three-level jump preferences as invitational following opener's one-level new suit rebid: e.g., 1Template:Cs - 1Template:Ds; 1Template:Ss - 3Template:Cs
Jump raise
A raise of partner's suit one level higher than the minimum legal raise. For example, 1Template:Hs - 3Template:Hs or 1Template:Ds - 1Template:Hs; 3Template:Hs
Jump rebid
A rebid of one's original suit, one level higher than necessary, usually showing a six-card suit: for example, 1Template:Ds - 1Template:Hs; 3Template:Ds. The range of strength shown by a jump rebid is a matter of partnership agreement: some treat it as a one-round force, others (particularly if playing Kaplan-Sheinwold) play it as only a little weaker than a game-forcing opening bid.
Jump shift
A jump bid of a new suit.
1) As a rebid by opener (e.g. 1Template:Hs – 1Template:Ss; 3Template:Cs) or responder (e.g. 1Template:Hs – 1Template:Ss; 1NT – 3Template:Cs), it indicates extra strength
2) As direct response (e.g. 1Template:Hs – 2Template:Ss): usually, a very strong hand. However, another treatment (weak jump-shifts, requiring prior partnership agreement) uses the bid to show a weak hand and a long suit.


Kaplan-Sheinwold (K-S)
A bidding system that uses five card majors and the weak notrump.
Key-card Blackwood
An ace asking convention that counts the king of the agreed trump suit as an ace.
A type of team-of-four tournament in which the winning teams from each round advance to the next. The losing team is removed from play (but see repechage). In a double knockout a team is removed from play only after losing two matches.
A spectator.
An ace asking convention initiated by the first step above four of the agreed trump suit. See Useful space principle.
Kiss of death
At pairs, minus 200. A score of minus 200, down two undoubled and vulnerable, or down one doubled and vulnerable, is a likely bottom against a part score by the opponents.


Last Train
A conventional bid that is one step above the current bid and one step below game in a trump suit. It is a mild slam try and conveys no information about the suit bid. After 1Template:Hs - 3Template:Hs; 4Template:Cs, 4Template:Ds is Last Train, invites slam, and does not necessarily show a diamond control.
Late play
A board that is played after the remainder of the event has finished, usually because of slow play or an irregularity.
Law of Total Tricks
A property of bridge deals which states that the total number of cards held by each side in its best trump suit equals the total number of tricks available to both sides. This is interpreted to mean that a side can safely bid to a level that equals its combined trump length. See Hand evaluation.
Laws of contract bridge
A set of definitions, procedures and remedies that defines how contract bridge is played. The Laws include the Proprieties, which discuss the game's customs and etiquette -- often far more important than procedural matters. The Laws apply worldwide. Individual sponsoring organizations, such as the ACBL and the EBL, establish their own regulations for play, which may amplify the Laws but may not conflict with them.
A contract that can be made on any rational line of play.
1) The first card played to a trick, which dictates the suit that others must play if able to do so (see follow suit).
2) The hand that is entitled to lead to the next trick is said to be "on lead" or to "have the lead."
3) See opening lead.
Lead directing double
A double by the partner of the prospective opening leader that requests the lead of a particular suit. Experienced partnerships usually agree on a set of suit priorities, such as opening leader's bid suit, doubler's bid suit, dummy's first bid suit, or a suit that dummy has just bid conventionally.
Lead out of turn
Playing a card when it was another player's turn to lead. Subject to penalty.
Lead through strength
A maxim that advises a defender to lead a suit in which LHO has high card strength, forcing declarer to play high or low before third hand plays. The corollary is that a defender is advised to lead up to weakness in the fourth hand.
To make a jump bid.
Leave in
To pass, often used of passing partner's double.
lebensohl (sic)
Responder's bid of 2NT as a puppet to 3Template:Cs in preparation for a sign-off. Normally used after an overcall of partner's 1NT opening, or after a double of partner's weak two bid.
(Slang) game. Normally used in reference to rubber bridge. "A leg up" means being vulnerable vs. non-vulnerable opponents. "Cut off their leg" means becoming vulnerable vs. opponents who are already vulnerable.
The number of cards held in a suit.
1) The number of tricks that (when added to the book of six tricks) a bid or contract states will be taken. For example, a bid at the four level contracts to take (6 + 4) = 10 tricks.
2) The property of a contract that states whether it is at the part-score, game or slam level.
Left-hand opponent
(Adv.) To enter the auction with relatively low values (for example, to "open light" or "overcall light"). To do so can be either a matter of tactics or of general style.
Lightner double
A penalty double, usually of a slam contract, that requests partner to choose an unusual suit for the opening lead. This criterion tends to regard as typical (and thus to exclude) a trump lead, the lead of defenders' bid suit, and the lead of an unbid suit.
In the bidding, to define a hand's strength with some degree of precision.
Limit jump raise
An invitational jump raise of a major suit, such as 1Template:Hs - 3Template:Hs. Limit jump raises usually show four-card support for partner's major suit and around 11 HCP or the distributional equivalent.
1) (with "the"): A line on a bridge scorepad that separates points for tricks that count toward game (see Below the line) from those that do not (see Above the line).
2) On a given hand, the play strategy that is adopted by declarer or by the defenders.
3) Bidding: See Up the line and Down the line.
1) (Noun) A contract that is certain to succeed.
2) (Verb) To force a particular hand onto lead such that it cannot relinquish the lead unscathed.
(Pronounced El-Oh-El) Abbreviation of Little Old Lady. Facetious depiction of an apparently weak player.
Long cards
Cards of the same suit, remaining in one hand, after all the other cards in that suit have been played from the other hands.
Long hand
In a partnership, the hand with the longer trumps.
Long suit
1) In a hand, the suit with the greatest number of cards. Seldom used of a suit with fewer than five cards.
2) Any suit of unusual length.
A card which apparently cannot take a trick.
A card play tactic that attempts to create an advantage by playing two losers, often of different suits, on the same trick. Loser-on-loser play has many applications, including the creation of a ruffing position for declarer, the avoidance of overruffs by the defense, and interference with the opponents' communications.
Losing trick count
A method of hand evaluation based on counting losers.
No score.
(Adjective) A card that is not expected to take a trick.
Low-high signal
On defense, to play a higher card, having already played a lower one, so as to convey information to partner. Compare with echo.


A defensive card that, if retained, is a liability on one line of play, but that, if played, will be missed on another line of play.
Major penalty card
A card that is exposed by a defender prematurely and through intentional play; or, an honor card that is exposed prematurely even if accidentally. A major penalty card remains face up on the table to be played at the first legal opportunity, including as a discard. Compare with minor penalty card.
Major suit
The heart suit and the spade suit are major suits. Declarer scores 30 points for each trick taken in an undoubled contract with a major suit as trump. Because game requires at least 100 points for tricks bid and made, both 4Template:Hs and 4Template:Ss (or 2Template:Hs doubled and 2Template:Ss doubled) constitute game contracts. Compare with minor suits.
Major tenace
The highest and the third highest remaining cards in a suit, held in the same hand. For example, the Template:SsAQ before spades have been played. Tenaces define the structure of finesses. See minor tenace.
(Verb) To take as many tricks as a contract calls for.
(Adjective) An unsophisticated game, approach to bidding, or line of play.
To be known to hold a particular card: "He was marked with the Template:HsQ."
Marked finesse
A finesse for a card that is marked with a particular opponent.
The highest card of a suit that is yet to be played.
Units awarded for successful performance in a bridge tournament.
A series of hands played by two teams in knockout events. One pair from each team sits North-South at one table and the other pair sits East-West at the other table.
A type of scoring in duplicate bridge. A pair's score on a given board is one matchpoint for every pair they outscored and one-half matchpoint for every pair they tied. (Outside the US these awards are often doubled, so as to avoid the award of fractional matchpoints.) See comparative scoring.
The layout of the cards that play pivotal roles in certain endplays, most typically squeezes.
Maxims of bridge
A brief expression of a general principle - most have some validity but none are true in all circumstances.
Maximal overcall double
By prior agreement, a game-invitational double of an overcall that leaves no room for a bid, when a bid would invite game. For example, after 1Template:Ss - (2Template:Hs) - 2Template:Ss - (3Template:Hs) there is no room below 3Template:Ss for a game invitation (and a bid of 3Template:Ss itself would be taken as merely competitive), so a double is used as a game invitation.
See Suit preference signal.
A card that requires an opponent to retain a higher card in the same suit, as a guard. The term is typically used of squeeze play.
Merrimac coup
The lead of an unsupported high card to force an opponent to use an entry before it can be used effectively. Named for a ship sunk during the Spanish-American War, to block the entrance to a harbor. Sometimes confused with, and spelled as, the Merrimack, the American Civil War ship that fought the Monitor. See Deschapelles coup.
Michaels cue bid
By prior agreement, an immediate cue bid of an opening bid, such as 1Template:Ds - (2Template:Ds), for two-suited takeout. The cue bid of a minor suit shows length in both major suits. The cue bid of a major suit shows length in the other major suit and in an unspecified minor suit.
Minor penalty card
A card below the rank of an honor card that is exposed by a defender prematurely but accidentally, via mishap. A minor penalty card remains face up on the table until played. The minor penalty card must be played before any other card below honor rank in the same suit; however, an honor in the same suit may be played before the minor penalty card is played. Compare with major penalty card.
Minor suit
The club suit and the diamond suit are minor suits. Declarer scores 20 points for each trick taken in an undoubled contract with a minor suit as trump. Because game requires at least 100 points for tricks bid and made, both 5Template:Cs and 5Template:Ds (or 3Template:Cs doubled and 3Template:Ds doubled) constitute game contracts. Compare with major suits.
Minor tenace
The second-highest and the fourth-highest (or lower) remaining cards in a suit, held in the same hand. For example, the Template:SsKJ before spades have been played. See major tenace.
Identical hand distributions: "North and South had mirror distributions."
A bid that fails to describe the hand properly. Often a misdescription of a hand's shape, as distinct from an overbid or underbid.
Two partnership hands, neither of which can support the other's long suit. For example, a red Two-suiter opposite a black Two-suiter constitutes a misfit.
Mitchell movement
A tournament movement in which, after each round, the pairs sitting in one direction remain stationary, the pairs sitting in the other direction move to the next higher numbered table, and the boards are moved to the next lower numbered table. The effect is to create two events, a "North-South" contest and an "East-West" contest, with a different pair winning each.
1) Describing a pairs event in which each pair consists of a male and a female player.
2) A mixed raise is, by agreement, a jump cue bid of opener's suit in support of partner's overcall. It tends to show four card support for partner's suit and the strength of a good single raise. In 1Template:Ds - (1Template:Hs) - 1Template:Ss - (3Template:Ds), 3Template:Ds is a mixed raise.
Morton's fork coup
A play that forces the defense to choose between taking a high card that will establish extra winners for declarer, and ducking the trick, after which the high card cannot be cashed.
In a tournament, a progression of players and boards from table to table that enables the desired comparisons among the participants.
Moysian fit
A 4-3 trump fit. Named after Alphonse "Sonny" Moyse Jr., long-time editor of The Bridge World, who wrote and published a variety of articles that promoted the virtues of such fits, and bidding styles designed to locate them.
An ambiguous opening bid of 2Template:Ds that promises one of several different types of hand.


A call which indicates willingness to play the contract named: a suit bid suggesting length or strength in that suit, a no trump bid that suggests a balanced hand, a double that suggests the ability to defeat the contract, or a pass that suggests weakness. Compare with Artificial.
Nederlandse Bridge Bond (Dutch Bridge League).
Negative double
A conventional call used by responder in a competitive auction to denote possession of at least one unbid suit.
Negative free bid
Responder's suit bid following an opening bid and an overcall. Nonforcing by prior agreement.
Negative inference
An inference based on something that did not happen. For example, if a defender does not overruff, declarer might conclude that he could not overruff. Or if declarer does not ruff a loser in dummy, a defender might conclude that declarer does not have a loser in that suit.
Negative response
A bid that shows insufficient values for a stronger response. For example, a 2Template:Ds response to a forcing 2Template:Cs opening bid is often negative, as is a 1Template:Ds response to a Precision 1Template:Cs.
Negatgive slam double
In a competitive auction, the double of a voluntarily bid slam to show no defensive tricks, and therefore to suggest a sacrifice.
New minor forcing
By agreement, after 1m - 1M; 1NT, a bid of two of the unbid minor as artificial and forcing, often requesting three card support for responder's bid major or four cards in the unbid major. Sometimes called PLOB.
New suit
A suit that has not yet been bid.
No bid
An alternative to "pass". Used in the United Kingdom, where "pass" might be mis-heard as "hearts." Regarded as improper in the US.
Non-forcing bid
A bid which partner may pass. See also forcing bid, invitation, sign-off.
The state of vulnerability in which both bonuses and penalties are smaller. Therefore, less is at stake for a non-vulnerable pair investigating game or slam, or that is contesting the part score, than for a vulnerable pair. Also, "not vulnerable."
None vulnerable
In rubber bridge, the state of the score in which neither pair has made a game. In duplicate bridge, the vulnerability condition under which neither pair is designated as vulnerable for the board in play. Also, "neither side vulnerable."
One of the partnerships designated on duplicate boards.
A contract, or a bid that names a contract, to be played without a trump suit. In the bidding, notrump is the highest ranking strain.
Notrump distribution
balanced distribution.
Nuisance bid
An interference bid whose principal aim is not to preempt or to compete for the contract, but nevertheless to upset the smooth flow of the opponents' bidding sequence.
(With "go for") A very large penalty: "He went for a number." Often, "telephone number," alluding to the size of that number if regarded as a quantity.


1) Of a finesse: A duck, made in the hope that a high card will fall. For example, declarer holds Template:HsK432 opposite dummy's Template:HsQ765. The Template:Hs2 is led to the Template:HsQ, which wins. Declarer now leads dummy's Template:Hs5 and RHO follows with the Template:HsJ. Declarer ducks, hoping that LHO must now play the Template:HsA. The play is obligatory because given the first heart trick, no other play can yield three tricks.
2) Of a falsecard: A falsecard that, like an obligatory finesse, cannot lose and might gain. An example is the play of the card that one is known to hold (for example, the play of a queen after it has been successfully finessed).
Specifying a level. To make 4Template:Hs is to make four-odd.
Odd-even discards
A defensive carding scheme under which the play of an odd-numbered card is encouraging and that of an even-numbered card is discouraging. The rank of the card may be used to show #suit preference.
Odd tricks
The number of tricks above 6 (the #book) that are taken by declarer.
1) (Slang) Down, or set. "We're off two" means "We have made two fewer tricks than our contract."
2) (Slang) #offside.
Off shape
Having a distribution that does not quite conform to that suggested by a bid, such as an opening bid of 1NT with 2=2=6=3 shape, or a weak-two bid with a seven card suit.
Off the top
Said of some number of tricks that can be lost or won without gaining or losing the lead. "There were eleven tricks off the top in spades," to mean that declarer could take eleven tricks without interruption; or, "We're down off the top," to mean that the defenders can take at least four immediate tricks against 4Template:Hs.
Unfavorably located, from the point of view of the player taking a finesse. If East holds the Template:CsK and North the Template:CsAQ, from South's point of view the Template:CsK is offside. Cf. #onside.
A world bridge championship held every four years under the auspices of the World Bridge Federation.
1) Makeable. A contract that can be made is said to be on.
2) Onside.
3) (Suffix) In rubber bridge, preceded by a number that indicates progress toward game. If one has 40 points Below the line, one has 40-on.
One club system
A bidding system that uses a bid of 1Template:Cs as artificial and forcing, but not necessarily strong.
One over one
A one-level response to partner's opening bid.
One round force
A bid that requests partner to ensure that the bidding continue for at least one more round. If partner's RHO bids, partner may pass, but is otherwise expected to bid.
A hand with only one long suit, normally used to describe a hand with a six card or longer suit.
Favorably located, from the point of view of the player taking a finesse. If West holds the Template:CsK and North the Template:CsAQ, then from South's point of view the Template:CsK is onside. Cf. Offside.
1) To start the bidding.
2) Of an event: Not restricted to, for example, a particular sex or degree of expertise.
3) Of a room used at a team event: Allowing spectators.
The player who makes the opening bid.
Opener's rebid
Opener's second bid.
Opening bid
The first bid in the auction.
Opening lead
The first card led by defenders. The dummy is not faced until after the opening lead, which makes the choice of opening lead more difficult than other leads. The opening lead can determine the outcome of the deal.
Opening leader
The declarer's LHO, who always makes the opening lead.
A member of the other partnership or team.
Optimum contract
In unopposed bidding, that contract which cannot be improved upon by further bidding, nor could have been improved upon by taking a different line in earlier bidding, with regard to maximum points and least risk of failure.
Our hand
(Informal) A hand on which the speaker's side can take more tricks than the other side.
Out-of-the-blue cue bid
See Advance cue bid.
See In back of.
1) (Noun) A bid that overstates a hand's strength.
2) (Verb) To bid voluntarily to a contract that the partnership cannot make.
3) (Verb) To bid too high, irrespective of the result.
(Slang) Having overbid.
The first bid made by one of opener's opponents.
The player making an overcall. Compare with advancer.
To ruff with a higher trump following a prior ruff on the same trick.
To play a card higher than the winning card played by partner, unnecessary to win the trick but necessary to gain the lead.
A trick taken by declarer beyond the number of tricks required by the contract.


Deck of cards.
Two players playing bridge together as partners.
A form of #duplicate bridge in which each pair competes separately, as distinct from team and individual events. Pairs events are normally scored by matchpoints.
(Slang) A term used to describe someone who does not play bridge as well as the person using the term.
The product of the best bidding and play (of a given deal) by both sides.
Par contest
A competition that uses composed deals, designed to test each pair's bidding and its card play. After the bidding, pairs are instructed to play (or defend) a specified contract. Results are compared not with other tables but with the predetermined par result.
Par contract
That contract which results from optimal bidding by both sides, and which neither side could improve by further bidding.
(Slang) Partner.
1) A trick score less than 100, obtained by making a contract.
2) The contract that results in that trick score.
3) In rubber bridge, a total of fewer than 100 points below the line.
A part-score.
Partial elimination
An endplay in which declarer is unable to remove all possible safe defensive exit cards, and must hope that the remaining cards are so distributed that the defense cannot get off lead safely.
The other member of the partnership.
1) See pair.
2) Two partners who play together for an extended period.
3) The complete set of agreements entered into by a pair.
Partnership bidding
Sequences in which the opponents do not compete.
Partnership desk
A service, provided by some tournaments, that locates a partner for a player who does not yet have one.
Partnership understanding
An agreement between partners, reached prior to the beginning of play, concerning the meaning of a call or of carding.
1) A call indicating that the player does not wish to change the contract named by the preceding bid, double or redouble. To pass transfers the right to make the next call to passer's LHO, unless it is the third consecutive pass, which ends the bidding (but see Passed out).
2) To play, from third hand, a lower card than the one led to the trick. If declarer leads the Template:HsJ, LHO plays a small heart, and declarer plays the Template:Hs2 from dummy's Template:HsAQ2, declarer has passed the Template:HsJ.
Pass and pull
To make a forcing pass and on the next round remove partner's double by bidding.
Passed hand
A player who passed instead of opening the bidding. The inference is that a passed hand does not hold the values required to open the bidding (unless playing a strong pass bidding system).
Passed out
A hand is passed out if the bidding begins with four consecutive passes. After a hand has been passed out, the players immediately proceed to the next hand.
Passive defense
An approach to defending a hand that emphasizes waiting for tricks that declarer must eventually lose, getting off lead safely, and avoiding plays that will set up tricks for declarer. Often indicated when neither declarer nor dummy has a running side suit or when the declaring side may have over-reached in the bidding. Contrast with Active.
A bid made in response to partner's ambiguous call. For example, South opens with 1Template:Ss and West bids 2Template:Ss, by prior agreement showing hearts and a minor. North passes and East bids 3Template:Cs, expecting West to pass if he holds clubs and to correct to diamonds otherwise.
Pass out
1) To make the third of three consecutive passes following a bid, double or redouble.
2) To make the fourth of four consecutive passes. Thus, a bid cannot have been made and the table progresses to the next deal.
3) (Adjective) The seat where a pass would end the auction.
See distribution.
Pearson points
High card points plus number of spades held. See Hand evaluation.
1) A score awarded to the defense when declarer's contract goes down. The size of the penalty depends on the number of tricks that declarer was set, the vulnerability, and whether the contract was doubled, or redoubled. See Score.
2) A remedy assigned by a director to redress damage done by an infraction. The penalty for a minor, procedural infraction might be some number of tricks, matchpoints or IMPs, or disallowing a particular bid or play. A more serious violation of the game's Proprieties may be imposed by barring the offender from an event, a portion of an event, or from organized bridge.
Penalty card
A card, incorrectly exposed by the defense, whose subsequent proper play is governed by certain rules. See major penalty card and minor penalty card.
Penalty double
A call that doubles penalties if opponents fail to make their currently bid contract. Rewards are also doubled, should they succeed.
Penalty pass
The pass of an informatory double, to convert it to a penalty double.
Percentage play
A play that is chosen because the mathematics of suit distribution suggests that it is more likely to succeed than an alternative line. Usually said of play in a single suit rather than the hand as a whole.
(Slang; chiefly British) See Echo. The term is said to derive from Blue Peter, a nautical signal.
Phantom sacrifice
A sacrifice bid against a contract that the opponents would not have made. Also, False sacrifice.
(Slang) A hand that is so easy it plays itself. "Pianola" is a trademarked brand of player piano (a piano that plays automatically).
Pick up
1) (Verb) To run a suit without losing a trick in it.
2) (Adjective) Said of a partner who completes a pair, or of a pair that completes a team, just prior to the start of an event.
3) (Adjective) A pick-up slip is one on which the result of a deal is recorded for the purpose of comparative scoring.
The lead of a high card from one hand to capture a singleton of lower rank in an opponent's hand.
1) A spot card.
2) A suit symbol (Template:Ss, Template:Hs, Template:Ds, Template:Cs) on a card.
To discard.
1) (Adjective) Of the suit that both defenders must guard in a double squeeze.
2) (Verb) In party bridge, to change partners while remaining at the same table.
A French, whist-like card game whose scoring foreshadowed that used in contract bridge.
Plain suit
A suit that is not trump
Side suit.
1) (Noun) The stage of a deal when players attempt to take tricks. The declarer tries to take at least as many tricks as the contract calls for, and the defenders try to prevent that outcome.
2) (Verb) To contribute a card to a trick, either by displaying its face (as in duplicate bridge) or by placing it face up on the table (as in rubber bridge).
Play for
To assume that the opponents have a particular distribution or holding, and to plan and conduct the play on that basis.
1) (Of a contract) A rational, if not necessarily optimal, choice of strain and level.
2) (Of an agreement) Leading to an acceptable result, if not in the best fashion.
Playing tricks
Cards, such as long cards, that will take tricks (usually, for declarer), and that therefore contribute to a hand's strength.
Acronym for Petty Little Odious Bid; another name for New Minor Forcing. The name derives from a diatribe by Alphonse Moyse Jr., in The Bridge World's Master Solver's Club, which described the convention as a "petty, odious little bid."
One of four slots in a duplicate board that hold the cards between plays.
1) A scoring unit: e.g., a trick taken by declarer in a minor suit contract scores 20 points.
2) A metric used in hand evaluation, to quantify its strength in high cards and distribution.
3) A metric, such as masterpoints, used in rating players.
Point count
A method of hand evaluation which assigns a numeric value to a hand's high cards and distributional features, used as a guideline in bidding.
Pointed suit
Spades or diamonds. The term refers to the shape of the suit symbols. Compare to rounded suit.
Portland Club
A bridge club in London which published the first version of the Laws of contract bridge. The club remains part of the ongoing process of revising the laws, along with the ACBL and the EBL, because of the vesting of the copyright.
(Noun) Seat at the table: North, South, East, West; or first, second, third, fourth.
Positional squeeze
A squeeze that can succeed against only a particular opponent, because at least one guard must lie under at least one menace. Compare with automatic squeeze.
Positive response
A bid that announces the possession of at least minimum values. Often said of a response to a forcing opening bid. Compare with negative response.
Post mortem
(Slang) A discussion of a hand, and the nature of the result, after the play has concluded.
An unusually strong hand.
A bidding system that combines the features of Kaplan-Sheinwold with a strong, artificial 1Template:Cs opening bid.
1) (Adjective) A bid whose primary function is to interfere with the opponents' bidding by taking away bidding space they need to exchange information.
2) (Noun) A bid that has a preemptive effect, regardless of its intent.
A call that returns the bidding to partner's first-bid suit; for example, in 1Template:Hs - 1Template:Ss; 2Template:Ds - 2Template:Hs, 2Template:Hs is a preference. A simple, non-jump preference shows neither strength nor support for the suit; it is simply a return to partner's presumably longer suit.
Prepared bid
A bid, often a slight violation of a partnership agreement, that is chosen to avoid a later bidding problem. Playing five-card majors, for example, the decision to open a strong four-card spade suit in preference to a weak five-card heart suit.
Present count
A carding agreement under which a count signal shows the number of cards currently held. In a count-giving situation, a defender might first play the Template:Hs3 from Template:Hs753, and the Template:Hs7 as his second play. Also, "current count."
Principle of restricted choice
A guideline to the play of the hand, concerning the probability of the location of key cards in the unseen hands.
The movement of players and deals between rounds in an event.
Progressive squeeze
A squeeze in three suits that, when it matures, results in a new squeezed position in two suits.
1) In the play, to cause a card to become a winner.
2) In the bidding, to assign a higher value to a card, or to the hand as a whole, as a result of earlier calls made by partner or by the opponents.
A section of the Laws of Duplicate Contract Bridge that describes, in general terms, proper conduct as to the exchange of information concerning a hand, as to attitude and etiquette, as to partnership agreements, and as to spectators' conduct.
See balance.
See appeal.
Pseudo squeeze
A position that, to a defender, appears to be a true squeezed position, but is not. Declarer hopes that the defender will misplay as a result. The literature often gives as an example a position in which declarer has a void in dummy's apparent suit of entry.
Psychic bid
A call that grossly misstates high card strength or distribution, made so as to deceive the opponents. The Laws specify that psychic bids themselves are legal. It is, however, a violation to infer and fail to disclose that partner has psyched, when the inference is based on partnership agreement or experience. Sponsoring organizations regulate the use of certain psychic bids. Also, "psychic" or "psych."
Psychic control
A bid that, by partnership agreement, announces that the player's previous bid was a psychic.
1) To remove the opponents' trumps.
2) To remove partner's double.
To force out an opponent's trump, usually by means of a forcing defense.
A transfer bid that requests partner to make a minimum bid in a particular suit.
1) (Verb) To force the opponents to make any subsequent call at a level higher than they have as yet.
2) (Noun) A tied board in a team event.


A contraction of queen and jack. Used in situations where it does not matter whether the queen or the jack is held or played, as well as to emphasize that it does not matter. The term generalizes to other equals, such as jack and ten. See Principle of restricted choice.
(Adjective) A session or sessions preliminary to the final of an event.
1) Of a bid: A call based, usually, on high card points, rather than a feature such as fit or shortness. A raise from 1NT to 3NT based on a 4-3-3-3 hand with 10 HCP is a quantitative raise.
2) Of scoring: The method of scoring used in rubber bridge or in IMP events. The metric used is the number of points earned on each deal, perhaps adjusted by the IMP scale and victory points. In contrast, comparative scoring is based on the number of pairs that have been out-scored.
In Key Card Blackwood, the cheapest bid over the response to 4NT, to ask responder for the trump queen.
Quick tricks
A component of hand evaluation. High cards that are likely to establish quick control of a suit.
Quitted trick
A trick whose cards have all been turned face down (duplicate bridge) and gathered in front of the trick's winner (rubber bridge). In rubber bridge, a player may inspect a quitted trick if his side has not yet led to the next trick. In duplicate bridge, a player may inspect a quitted trick only if told to do so by a director.
Points won divided by the sum of points won and points lost, occasionally used to break a tie.


A movement used in individual events.
A bid of partner's suit at a higher level. A raise shows a fit for partner's suit. 1?–2? is a single raise; 1?–3? is a double raise.
1) The position of an individual card relative to others: Aces have the highest rank, followed by K, Q, J, 10, ... 2.
2) The order of denominations in the bidding. Notrump is highest-ranked denomination, followed by spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs. A higher-ranked suit may be bid at the same level as a lower-ranked suit; the reverse is not true.
1) Second and subsequent bids by the same player.
2) A bid by the same player in a suit he has already bid.
Rebiddable suit
A suit with sufficient length and strength, according to partnership agreements, to be rebid in certain defined circumstances.
(Abbreviation of "recapitulation") A summary of results in a bridge tournament.
A member of a bridge organization whose responsibility it is to maintain a record of reports of possible violations of the Proprieties.
Rectify the count
To lose some number of tricks in preparation for a squeeze. Losing the tricks "tightens up" the position, removing idle cards from the defenders' hands before they can be used as safe #discards in the squeezed position.
(Slang) Vulnerable. From the color of the paint on a duplicate board. Also: "Red vs. red" to mean both teams vulnerable, and "red vs. white" to mean vulnerable vs. not.
In rubber bridge, the prescribed remedy for a faulty deal. In duplicate bridge, redeals are not used except in special cases and under a director's supervision.
A call that doubles the penalties and bonuses that apply to a previous double. Used conventionally, a redouble may also convey additional information.
A card that enables a hand to gain the lead on a later trick, after that hand has already gained the lead with a different entry card.
Refuse (a trick)
To duck.
To fail to comply with a bid that has made a request, such as an invitation or a transfer.
Relay bid
An artificial bid that requests partner to further describe his hand. The relay is usually the lowest available bid, so as to leave as much room for description as possible.
Relay system
A bidding system that consists of many relay sequences.
To bid on over an undesired contract, especially a doubled contract.
Informal term for Revoke; associated with other games such as whist.
See balance.
A form of knockout event in which losing teams enter a secondary event, with the possibility of re-entering the primary event if they have a high finish in the secondary.
To remove from a contract that partner has bid and which, often, has been doubled.
opening bidder's partner.
A bid by responder immediately following an opening bid and RHO's call.
Responsive double
A double that follows LHO's opening bid, partner's takeout double and RHO's raise of opener's suit, to show moderate values and no clear opinion as to the best strain.
Result merchant
(Slang) One who evaluates bids and plays according to their outcome, rather than to their intrinsic merit. Also, "Result player."
Retain the lead
Maintain the right to lead to the next trick by leading and winning the current trick.
To lead back, usually the suit that partner led.
A non-jump rebid above the one-level in a suit that ranks higher than the first-bid suit. The reverse bid shows extra strength.
Failure to follow suit as required when a player is able to do so.
(Slang) To redouble.
Right-hand opponent.
Rise with
To play a high card in the hope of taking a trick: "Rise with the ace." Also, "go up with"
Acronym for Roman Key-Card Blackwood.
Descriptive of bids and carding agreements used or originated in the Roman system:
1) Roman 2Template:Cs and 2Template:Ds: Three-suiters.
2) Roman Blackwood, Gerber and (RKCB)Roman Key-Card Blackwood: Step responses to the ace-asking bid that entail mild ambiguity.
3) Roman jump #overcall: Two-suiter.
4) Roman asking bid: A request that partner bid his number of controls wholesale, via step responses.
5) Roman discards: odd-even discards.
6) Roman leads: Rusinow leads.
Acronym for Raise Only Non-Force. A treatment used for responding to preempts, usually weak two bids. All bids except the single raise are forcing.
Rosenblum Cup
The award for winning the world knockout team championship that is held in even numbered years other than leap years. (The Bermuda Bowl is contested in odd numbered years and the World Team Olympiad in leap years.)
The progression of the bidding and play in a clockwise direction around the table.
A bidding system popular during the 1960s in the US. It features sound opening bids, five-card majors and negative doubles. It is the principal foundation for 2/1 Game Forcing.
1) In the bidding, a sequence of four consecutive calls.
2) In duplicate bridge, a set of boards leading to another round (e.g., the semi-final round), or a set of boards that two pairs play against one another.
3) Of a control, the round on which the control can stop the opponents from winning a trick. An ace, for example, is a first round control; the king is a second round control.
Rounded suit
Hearts or clubs. The term refers to the shape of the suit symbols. Compare to pointed suit.
An event format in which each team eventually opposes each other team.
In rubber bridge, the set of successive deals that ends when one of the pairs wins two games.
Rubber bonus
A bonus awarded to the pair winning the rubber: 500 points if the losers are vulnerable, 700 if they are not.
Rubber bridge
The original form of contract bridge, a contest of four people playing only amongst themselves (as distinct from duplicate bridge, which requires a minimum of eight players). There is often a wager on the result.
Rubens advances
Transfer advances of overcalls. See Useful Space Principle.
To play a trump on a trick when a plain suit was led.
Ruff and discard
The lead of a suit in which both opponents are void, so that one opponent can ruff while the other discards (or sluffs). A ruff and discard is usually damaging to the side that leads to the trick. Also, ruff and sluff or ruff and slough.
Ruff out
To establish a suit by ruffing one or more of its low cards.
Rule of Eleven
A calculation that can be used when it is reasonable to suppose that opening leader has led the fourth highest card that he held in a suit. The rule says to subtract the #pips on the card led from 11. The result is the number of cards in the other three hands that are higher than the one led. Third hand, for example, can then make inferences about declarer's hand by examining his own holding and dummy's.
Rule of Two and Three
A bidding guide suggested by Ely Culbertson, which counsels preemptors to be within two tricks of their contract if vulnerable, and within three if not. Few players now follow the Rule of Two and Three.
A finding and decision by a tournament director or appeals committee.
To play the winners in a suit.
Rusinow leads
An agreement to lead the second highest of touching honors.


(Slang) Sacrifice. Also, "sack."
To deliberately bid over an opponent's bid, hoping that the cost of a penalty will be smaller than the value of opponent's presumably successful contract.
Safety level
A level at which the partnership can normally assume, on the basis of the previous bidding, that its contract will succeed. It is the point below which the partnership prefers to explore even higher contracts. Also, "security level."
Safety play
A play that maximizes the chances for fulfilling the contract (or for achieving a certain score) by avoiding a play which might result in a higher score. Contrast with percentage play: the latter is the best play in a suit, while a safety play is the best line for the contract.
(Slang) To bid weakly or pass with good values, in the hope that the opponents will gt overboard.
An overcall made after an opening bid and response by the opponents. The overcall is "sandwiched" between two hands that have each shown strength.
(Slang) Sacrifice.
Acronym for Standard American Yellow Card.
A style of bidding that attempts to narrowly limit the strength of a partnership's hands, so as to make its bidding more accurate.
Scissors coup
A loser-on-loser play meant to break the opponents' communications. Formerly known as 'Coup without a name'.
1) The numeric result of a deal, session or event.
2) (Verb) Of a card, to win a trick: "The Template:SsQ scored."
Score slip
A pick-up slip or traveller.
1) To bid to a safer contract.
2) To score small trumps by ruffing, rather than as long cards. Often used of the play of a contract based on a Moysian fit.
A device which divides the table diagonally, visually separating partners from each other. Used in higher-level competition to reduce the possibility of unauthorized information.
Opponents who sit on the same side of the screen.
Position relative to the dealer: for example, dealer's LHO is said to be in second seat.
Second guesser
See result merchant.
Second hand
The player to the left of the player who has led to a trick.
Second hand low
A precept that advises second hand to play a low card on RHO's lead.
A group of contestants in an event.
A ranking assigned to a contestant of relatively high rank.
See-saw squeeze
See Entry-shifting squeeze.
Semi-balanced hand
A hand with 5-4-2-2 or 6-3-2-2 distribution.
Semi-forcing bid
A bid which is conditionally forcing: one which requests partner to rebid unless his hand is minimal or sub-minimal for his previous bidding. Compare invitation.
1) The auction, or calls made in the auction.
2) Two or more cards adjacent in rank.
A period of play during which those entered in an event play designated boards against designated opponents.
1) To defeat a contract.
2) The number of tricks by which a contract is defeated ("a two-trick set").
Set game
In rubber bridge, an agreement that partners will not change at the end of each rubber.
Set up
(Of a call) A call that is not quite warranted by the strength of the hand making it.
The distribution of suits in a hand.
1) (Verb) To lead a suit other than the one already played.
2) (Noun) In the bidding, a change of suit, usually said of a jump bid (see jump shift).
To try for an unusually good result by adopting an abnormal line of play, typically at matchpoint scoring. Declarer hopes that the cards are distributed in such a way that a superior line of play will fail.
Short club
The natural opening bid of 1Template:Cs when the suit contains only three cards. Usually necessitated by an agreement to use five-card majors. Also, "short diamond."
Short-suit game try
By agreement, a bid of a short side suit after a single raise, hoping to reach game. For example, after 1Template:Hs - 2Template:Hs, opener might rebid 3Template:Cs with a singleton or void in clubs. The bid tells partner where high cards will be least useful, indicating duplication of values. It requests partner to take positive action with high-card strength outside that suit. Otherwise, the bid requests partner to sign off (in this example, by bidding 3Template:Hs). See help-suit game try and game try.
Short-suit points
In hand evaluation, points counted for singletons and voids.
Fail to follow suit.
To mix the cards. Shuffling seldom results in random distributions: in the long run, the cards so mixed rarely match the mathematical expectancies.
Side game
A secondary event played simultaneously with the main event.
Side suit
A suit that is not trump; plain suit. A side suit may nevertheless have significant length: see Two-suiter.
The conventional meanings assigned to plays made by the defenders in order to exchange information. Also, carding.
Signoff bid
1) A bid that requests that partner pass.
2) A call that denies extra values, one that normally results in a pass by partner. Compare non-forcing bid, forcing bid.
Sign off
To make a signoff bid.
Simple squeeze
A squeeze against one opponent, in two suits, with the count (meaning 3).
Single dummy
The normal manner of play, based on certain knowledge only of one's own cards and dummy's. Compare with double dummy.
A holding of exactly one card in a suit.
A round in a movement during which a pair is idle.
An intentional irregularity in a Mitchell movement, where pairs or boards move in other than their normal fashion.
Skip-bid warning
A warning to LHO that one is about to make a jump bid that could cause a revealing hesitation or huddle. LHO is requested to wait for a short time before taking action. Some feel that the accumulated delay is unacceptable, but the use of bidding boxes and screens has largely eliminated the problem.
A bid of six-odd (a small slam) or seven-odd (a grand slam).
Slam try
A bid that invites partner to bid a slam.
(Slang) The location of a card that is onside. "In the slot" means "Finessable."
See discard. Pronounced, and often spelled, "sluff."
Cards that require Establishment before they can be cashed.
Slow arrival
A style of bidding that uses a jump to a contract (to which the previous bidding has already forced the partnership) to show a specific holding. Compare with Fast arrival.
See discard. Neo-orthography for slough, as used in ruff and sluff.
Small slam
A contract for six odd tricks.
After opener has denied a four-card major in a Stayman sequence, responder's jump to 3M to show four cards in the bid major and five cards in the other major.
Smother play
An endplay that captures an opponent's finessable card when that card cannot be finessed in the normal fashion.
Soft values
Lower honors, as distinct from aces and kings.
A suit strong enough to run without interruption, or (in the bidding) that requires no fit with partner.
To arrange one's cards by suit, and by rank within suit.
S.O.S. redouble
A redouble that asks partner for rescue from a doubled contract, normally a bad one.
A hand that is relatively strong for a call that is contemplated or that has been made.
Splinter bid
An unusual jump bid that by agreement shows a fit for partner's last-bid suit and a singleton or void in the bid suit. For example, a partnership could treat 4Template:Cs in response to an opening bid of 1Template:Ss as a splinter bid, showing a good hand with spade support and a singleton or void club. Compare with Fragment bid.
1) (Noun) The distribution in the opponents' hands of the cards in a suit.
2) (Verb) To play one of two touching honors when the lead comes through them.
Split menace
A menace in squeeze play which depends on values in both declarer's hand and dummy.
1) The organization that puts on a tournament.
2) One who hires partners or teammates to compete in an event.
Spot card
A card that ranks below the 10.
(Slang) Laydown.
A playing technique that forces the defender(s) to discard a vital card, usually an apparent stopper.
Squeeze card
A card whose lead forces one or both defenders to discard their guard in a suit.
(Adjective) Of a distribution of cards in defenders' hands that might make the play difficult for declarer. The defenders' trumps, for example, could be said to be stacked if they divide 5-0.
Standard American
A bidding system thought to conform to agreements that an unfamiliar partnership in America would use.
Not called to change seats during the movement being used.
Stayman convention
A conventional bid of 2Template:Cs that calls for a 1NT opening bidder to bid a four-card major, if one is held, and (usually) 2Template:Ds otherwise. Many continuations have been devised.
To gain an advantage, usually through deception. The theft may be material (e.g., a trick or a contract) or non-material (e.g., a tempo). Despite the term steal, deception is entirely legal if it does not involve unauthorized information or concealment of information to which the opponents are entitled.
In the bidding, the space between one bid and the next highest. See Useful Space Principle.
Step bid
A bid that conveys information on the basis of the number of steps it uses.
Stepping-stone squeeze
A squeeze that forces a defender either to be thrown in to act as a stepping-stone to a stranded dummy, or to allow declarer to establish a suit.
(Adjective and noun) A singleton.
A high card (normally, an honor) whose primary function is to prevent the opponents from running a suit in a notrump contract. (See also control).
See denomination.
1) To remove safe cards of exit from an opponent's hand.
2) To prepare for a ruff-and-sluff by removing all cards of a suit (or suits) in a partnership's hands.
A squeeze without the count in which one threat is against a safe exit card.
Striped-tail ape double
A double of a laydown contract made in hope of dissuading the opponents from successfully bidding to a higher, more rewarding contract. The doubler must be prepared to run (like the cowardly ape) to an escape suit if the opponents redouble.
Strong club system
A set of conventions that uses an opening bid of 1Template:Cs as an artificial, forcing opening that promises a strong hand.
Strong notrump
An opening notrump that shows a balanced hand and 15-17 or 16-18 HCP. Compare with weak notrump. A partnership's choice between the use of a strong notrump or a weak notrump has extensive implications for its entire bidding system.
Strong pass system
A bidding system that mandates a pass by first (or second) hand to show what other systems would regard as an opening bid. A corollary is that if the next hand also passes, third (or fourth) hand must bid to keep the deal from being passed out.
Strong two-bid
An agreement to use an opening bid of two of a suit so as to indicate a strong hand and a strong holding in the bid suit.
(Slang) Part-score.
Sucker double
(Slang) An ill-advised penalty double, such as one based on HCPs when the bidding warns of freak distributions.
A ranked division of the deck of cards into (in descending rank order) spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs. The suit ranking has a profound effect on the bidding and scoring, but none at all on the play. (See also denomination, major suit, and minor suit).
Suit preference signal
A defensive carding method that signals a preference, or the lack thereof, for a suit other than the suit used for the signal.
A strongly encouraging response to a transfer, such as a jump completion (e.g., 1NT - 2Template:Hs; 3Template:Ss).
A fit with partner's suit.
Support double
An informatory double of partner's overcall by the opener, showing precisely 3-card support for partner's suit.
A deceptive bid or play.
A difference in scores between two tables on a [[#board|board] in a team match.
(Slang) Three consecutive passes. "3Template:Ss - swish" means 3Template:Ss passed out.
Swiss teams
A team event in which teams play other teams with a similar record of wins and losses. It typically consists of a series of relatively short (6 to 8 board) matches.
To lead a different suit.
see bidding system.



In the above layout, North's hand is a two-suiter with a singleton spade and a doubleton club, while his partner holds a long suit in spades and a void in hearts. The two hands have a fit in diamonds.

1) (Noun) A grouping of four players at a bridge tournament.
2) (Verb) To put down one's cards face up.
3) See dummy, (2).
Table card
A large printed card placed on a table in a bridge tournament. The card contains instructions for the players, including players' designations and board numbers. Also, "Guide card."
Table presence
Awareness of opponents' behavior and mannerisms, leading to inferences regarding their holdings and problems on a deal. It is improper to take action on inferences made on the basis of partner's behavior. Also, "Table feel."
Table talk
1) Improper communication between partners, effected by words, gestures, or facial expressions.
2) Extraneous discussion during the play, discouraged as a distraction or possible source of unauthorized information.
Takeout double
A conventional call used in a competitive auction to indicate support for the unbid suits in a hand of opening strength, and to request that partner bid. The classic, ideal pattern is 4-4-4-1, with the shortness in the suit doubled. There are many informatory doubles that anticipate a bid from partner, but "takeout double" typically refers to the double immediately over opening bidder.
(Slang) Huddle.
(Verb and noun) Slang. To adopt a line of defense that is intended to force declarer to ruff in the long hand. Also, the line of defense itself: "To get the tap going." See Forcing defense.
1) A group of four to six players who compete together against other teams. With a six-member team, two players sit out each session.
2) A form of duplicate bridge, scored at IMPs, in which two teams contest several deals. One pair from each team sits North-South at one table and another pair sits East-West at the other table. Also, "Team-of-four."
A member of the same team.
1) The number of tricks needed to execute a line of play. Early in the play, the way in which a player uses a tempo in his choice of lead often determines the outcome of the deal.
2) The speed at which a player executes a call or play. Some players attempt to intimidate less experienced opponents by playing their cards very quickly. A break in tempo often indicates that a player has an unexpected problem in play.
Temporizing bid
Waiting bid.
A broken sequence of (often) honor cards, such as Template:SsAQ or Template:DsKJ. Declarer may lead toward his or dummy's tenace, preparing to finesse for a missing card. A defender may lead through declarer's or dummy's tenace to help his partner score cards behind the tenace.
Their hand
(Slang) A hand on which the opponents have the preponderance of strength.
(Slang) 1) A bid or contract based on less strength than normally recommended.
2) (Of a hand) Lacking body.
An opening lead convention that calls for the lead of the third-best card in a suit of up to four card length, and the fifth-best in a longer suit.
Third from even, low from odd
An opening lead convention that calls for the lead of the third-best card from a suit with an even number of cards, and the lowest card from a suit with an odd number of cards.
Third hand
The player who makes the third call, or who is the third to play to a trick.
Third hand high
A precept that advises the third hand to play a high card on partner's lead.
In squeeze play, a menace.
Three suiter
A hand with length in three suits, thus shortness in the fourth. Distributions such as 4-4-4-1, 5-4-4-0 and 5-4-3-1 are often termed "three-suiters."
To discard.
See Endplay.
(Slang) An honor card or honor sequence unaccompanied by low cards: "He had the Template:HsKQ tight."
A player's agenda for tasks in the play of the hand: for example, ruff losers and then draw trumps; or, draw trumps and then run the side suit.
Playing matchpoints, the highest score achieved on a board.
Top of nothing
The lead of a high spot card from a suit that contains no honor card.
Total tricks
The sum of the number of tricks that each partnership can take, with its longest combined suit as trump. See Law of Total tricks.
Adjacent. Both cards and suits may be touching. In the holding Template:CsKQ5, the king and queen are touching. In deciding whether to respond Up the line, a player notes that hearts and spades are touching suits.
An organized duplicate bridge competition.
(Slang) Huddle.
1) (Noun) A bid that conventionally shows length in a different suit.
2) (Noun) A bid that requests partner to make a bid in a particular suit, usually the suit immediately above that of the transfer.
3) (Verb) See #transfer a control.
Transferable values
Cards, such as aces and kings, that are valuable either in declarer's hands or in defenders'.
Transfer a control
In squeeze play, to shift the responsibility of controlling, or guarding, a menace from one opponent to the other. The purpose is to arrange that one opponent has to guard more menaces than he can successfully manage.
Trap pass
See Sandbag.
A slip of paper that is folded into a [[#board|board] in a pairs contest. The traveler records the results at tables where the board has already been played.
See Board.
A natural call that by partnership agreement carries or requests additional information regarding the suit named. If the treatment is an unusual one, it requires announcement to the opponents even though it is natural. For example, a partnership that plays Flannery usually agrees that a 1Template:Ss response to a 1Template:Hs opening bid shows five spades. So the 1Template:Ss response to 1Template:Hs, while natural, is a treatment because by agreement it shows at least a five card suit.
Trial bid
See game try.
A (usually, high-level) tournament whose winners proceed to a subsequent event of even greater import.
A set of 4 cards played by each player in turn, during the play of a hand.
The score earned by contracting for and taking tricks. Trick scores count toward making a game.
Triple squeeze
A squeeze that is so-named because it consists of three simple squeezes against the same opponent. A Progressive squeeze is regarded as a triple squeeze (because it is initiated by one), but not all triple squeezes are progressive.
A holding of three cards in a suit.
1) (Noun) A card in the trump suit whose trick-taking power is greater than any plain suit card.
2) (Verb) To play a trump after a plain suit has been led; see Ruff.
Trump control
The ability, from a combination of the holding in trumps with play technique, to prevent the opponents from taking too many tricks in a plain suit.
Trump echo
An echo in the trump suit, long used to alert partner to the possibility of a defensive ruff, and in the early 21st century to give partner the count.
Trump promotion
The advancement of a trump to the status of a winner by creating a position in which an opponent must suffer an uppercut, or an immediate adverse overruff, or choose to ruff with a higher trump that makes a later winner of an opponent's trump by force of cards.
Trump squeeze
A squeeze that forces an opponent to weaken his holding in one of the threat suits enough that the suit can later be ruffed out.
Trump suit
A suit, determined by the declaring side during the bidding, which if played, wins a trick regardless of the rank of other plain suit cards played to that trick.
Two-club system
A bidding system that uses an opening bid of 2Template:Cs as an artificial game force.
Two-over-one response
A response to an opening one-bid, forced by suit rank to take place at the two-level.
Two suiter
A hand containing two long suits (see diagram), usually each containing 4 or more cards, with at least 10 cards between the two suits.
Two-way finesse
A Finesse that could be taken successfully against either opponent.
Two-way Stayman
Over an opening bid of 1NT, the use of 2Template:Cs as non-forcing Stayman and 2Template:Ds as a forcing major suit inquiry.


Unauthorized information
Information obtained from partner that one is not permitted to act on: for example, the manner in which partner plays a particular card, or the tone of voice when making a bid.
Unbalanced distribution
Any distribution other than 4-3-3-3, 4-4-3-2 or 5-3-3-2.
Unbalanced hand
As above, hand whose distribution is unbalanced.
Unbid suit
A suit that has neither been bid nor indirectly shown.
To play a card whose rank interferes with the use of cards in the opposite hand. Opposite dummy's KQJ, declarer's singleton ace blocks the suit, and so is played to unblock. There are other situations that require unblocking, such as the Vienna coup.
See In front of.
1) (Verb) To bid less aggressively, or to a lower contract, than most would with the same cards.
2) (Noun) A bid that most would regard as weaker than warranted by the strength of the hand.
To lead a low card when holding the top card or cards in a suit. The underlead is standard in defense of notrump contracts, but unusual against suit contracts.
To play a trump lower than one already played on the lead of a plain suit. A rare play but sometimes required to adjust the number of trumps held while preparing a trump coup, or while preparing to defend certain squeezed positions.
A trick that declarer does not win, causing the contract to go down. Multiple undertricks occur: for example, two undertricks could result in 4Template:Hs down two.
Unfinished rubber
A rubber that the players agree not to finish. In rubber bridge scoring, a 300 point bonus is given to a vulnerable side, and a 100 point bonus to a side with a part score - note this differs from the 50 points for a part score in duplicate bridge.
To discard lower cards that help prevent a higher card from being captured by an opponent.
Unlimited bid
see wide-ranging bid.
1) (Of a contract) Unable to be played so as to bring about a favorable outcome.
2) (Of an agreement) Inevitably bringing about undesirable bidding sequences or contracts.
Unusual notrump
An artificial jump overcall in notrump that shows a Two-suiter, usually bid to suggest a sacrifice. As originally played, 1M - (2NT) showed a hand weak in high cards with, probably, 5-5 in the minor suits.
Unusual over unusual
A conventional method of conveying information after the opponents have deployed the unusual notrump.
Up the line
To bid the lower of two adjacent suits before the higher. For example, of two four card majors, the heart suit is normally bid before the spade suit in response to an opening bid of 1Template:Cs or 1Template:Ds.
To ruff in the expectation of being #overruffed, when the overruff will cause a trump in partner's hand to become a winner.
Upside-down signals
An agreement that when following suit to partner's lead, a low card encourages a continuation and a high card discourages. This is "upside-down," or the reverse of traditional practice.
Useful space principle
A guide to developing bidding conventions and treatments that directs developers' attention to the allocation of bidding space.


Variable notrump
The use of a weak notrump when not vulnerable and a strong notrump when vulnerable.
Victory points (VP)
A conversion scale used in team contests and based on total IMP differences, so as to reduce the effect of very large swings.
Vienna coup
The unblock of a winner opposite a threat prior to reaching a position that effects a squeeze.
An assumption about how the cards lie on a particular deal: "Sorry, partner, I took a view."
No cards in a given suit.
See Exclusion Blackwood.
A method of electronically displaying tournament bridge deals to spectators.
A scoring condition assigned to each pair in advance of a deal. In duplicate bridge, vulnerability is indicated on boards; in rubber bridge, it is determined by the number of trick points previously earned. Vulnerability affects both the size of bonuses for making contracts and penalties for failing to make them.
1) (Duplicate bridge) A designation, shown on each board, that indicates whether larger bonuses and penalties apply to one, both or neither pair on that deal.
2) (Rubber bridge) Having won one game.


Waiting bid
A bid that enables the bidder to obtain more information before making a commitment. For example, some players use 2Template:Ds over a 2Template:Cs forcing opening bid as a waiting bid rather than as a negative response.
To condone an irregularity. In duplicate bridge, a waiver is an improper action.
See Push.
Wasted values
See Duplicated values.
Acronym for World Bridge Federation.
Weak jump overcall
A jump overcall used to preempt the bidding.
Weak jump shift
A jump shift used to preempt the bidding.
Weak notrump
A 1NT opening bid on a balanced hand with, usually, 12-14 HCPs. The bid has mild preemptive value; compare with strong notrump. To show a strong notrump, the weak notrump user opens with a minor suit and rebids in notrump.
Weak two bid
An opening bid of two of a suit to indicate a relatively weak hand with a long suit.
A predecessor of contract bridge.
A count or total that obscures cards' identities. A bid of 5Template:Hs in response to Blackwood shows two aces wholesale, without announcing which aces they are.
Wide open
(Said of a suit) Without a stopper.
Wide-ranging bid
A bid made within a wide range of strengths and shapes, the opposite of a limit bid. An example from Acol is an opening bid of one of a suit which may be made with anything from 10 HCP (plus some shape) to 22 HCP (with a shape unsuitable for a 2 bid, eg 4441). Such bid are limited only by the failure of the bidder to make a stronger or weaker bid; thus an Acol one of a suit opening bid is limited by the fact that the opener did not pass or make a 2 level opening bid, or indeed make a pre-emptive opening bid.
A squeeze without the count that forces the defender to choose between a throw-in and an unblock, each of which is a losing option.
A card that can take a trick on a given hand.
(Slang) Improper knowledge of a deal, prior to playing it (cf. The Sting).
World Bridge Federation
The international governing body for organized bridge.
Acronym for Welsh Bridge Union.
Wolff signoff
After a jump rebid of 2NT by opener, responder's bid of 3Template:Cs as a puppet to 3Template:Ds, after which responder signs off with a weak hand.
Work count
The assignment of the numbers 4, 3, 2 and 1 as points to represent aces, kings, queens and jacks in the process of hand evaluation. Named for Milton Work.
Working card
A card that is beneficial to a partnership, given the mesh of the cards in the two hands.
(Verb) To place the contract in the less favorable hand for the partnership. See Antipositional.


(In lower case) Any small card, of no trick-taking significance.
(in upper case) An abbreviation of double used in bidding boxes and the printed word.
(In upper case) An abbreviation of redouble used in bidding boxes and the printed word.
See Cross-Imps


A hand with no card higher than a nine.


The lowest score obtained on a deal in a pairs game. Also, bottom.