hist-games: Gambling conventions for Whist?

David Levy dlevy at best.com
Tue Jul 28 18:47:15 PDT 1998

At 02:17 PM 7/28/98 -0500, Hathaway wrote:
>Hello, I know this is slightly out of the stated time period for the list,
>but can anyone explain how gambling works with the game of Whist? I
>understand the game itself, but I have no idea how the betting was done.
>Thank you for your help in advance! I am also looking for Hoyle's "Treatise
>on Whist," his original card book.

In Hoyle's time Whist was played to ten points -- one point for each trick
in excess of six with a bonus of four points if all four trump honors
(A-K-Q-J) are held by one partnership (two points for three of the four
honors). When a side was at eight points, they could no longer score for
honors. Stakes were typically a set amount per game. This became known as
"Long Whist" when, in the early 19th century, Short Whist became the rage,
particular among serious gamblers. Short Whist was played to five points
with NO reduction for honors. 

According to Butler's The Whist Reference Book, rubber points were scored as
follows: "The winners of a game count three rubber points if they win a
treble--i.e., if they score five points in that game against nothing by
their adversaries. They mark two rubber points if they win a double--i. e.,
if the adversaries have scored only one or two points in the game. They mark
one rubber point if they win a single--i.e., if their adversaries have
scored three or four points to their five in the game. The side winning the
rubber (two out of three games) add two more rubber points for that
achievement. The value of all the rubber points is next determined by
deducting from the winners' score whatever rubber points may have been made
by their adversaries. The balance of the rubber points must be settled for
by the losers at whatever stake per rubber point has previously been agreed
upon or understood..."

If you are seriously interested in getting a copy of Hoyle's Treatise, email
me off the list.

Check out the Trictrac Home Page at http://www.best.com/~dlevy/


David Levy
David Levy
dlevy at best.com

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