Glossary of Poker

The Ultimate Glossary of Poker Terms You Should Know

Most poker books published in the last decade or so have a glossary at the back of the book, so it’s fair to assume that almost all players know a good number of the lingo used in the game. In this article we will have a look at some of the more commonly used poker terms, their definitions, their origins and the various applications of each one in poker, in a bid to bring you up to speed.

Glossary of Poker

High: Increase in equity

The term High is used when players are in a spot where they need to perform and callers have significant equity on their side. This could also refer to circumstances where a player has absolutely no equity, such as a flop of 10s-2h. So a ‘High’ usually means that the other player is going to do better by calling your bet.

Examples of high situations would be “Hang, High”, “He’s going to raise”, and “Hang, High Flop”. Another good example of a High situation is where two players have the same hand on the flop, but the player who gets the 1 in the turn has a better hand.

Suit: Cards played on the back of a card

There are a number of ways that you can refer to the suit of a poker card, depending on whether it is describing the cards color or if it is referring to the function of each card within the suit.

The two most commonly used terms are Blackjack or Red, giving the top two cards. This can also be used for non-colored cards like Diamonds, Jacks, Clubs, Hearts, Spades, Nine, and Eight.

Flush: Four or more cards of a certain color

The term Flush refers to all four of a player’s cards having the same color, making four of a kind. It is a pretty common occurrence to be dealt a flop that includes four or more cards of the same color. When a hand is called with four cards of the same color, it is an example of a Flush, but it can also refer to a pair, or a straight flush.

Straight: Five or more cards of a certain color

A Straight refers to a pair of cards, and it does not always include a pair, it also has a number of different meanings. It can be used when a player has a full house or better, and it can also refer to a suited hand.

You can also use the term Straight to refer to a large hand which is very solid. For example, a hand with three 4’s and a Queen, can be referred to as a straight hand because the 4’s are the best cards in the hand.

Inside Straight: The straight number on the back of a card

The inside straight is the number on the back of a card that does not come up as a six. This is useful information, as it can give us an indication of how many cards need to come up for a straight.

There are two types of Inside Straight, one which is clearly seen, called a Back Inside Straight, and the other, the Upper Side Inside Straight. The Upper Side Inside Straight is a great example of when the wording of the hand can be important.

If a player is dealt two 5’s, and one 6 on the flop, the Inside Straight is clearly Back Inside Straight, it means that we need to see two cards of the same color, with the 6, to call it a straight, in order for it to be a Straight. You can also refer to a hand that has a Back Inside Straight as an Inside Straight Flush.

Flush: Five or more cards of a certain suit

The Flush refers to all five of a player’s cards, with the same suit, making a straight. One of the most common uses of the term is when players have a Full House or better. When this is the case, the term Flush is often thrown around freely.

Ace: The third highest card of a suit

Ace refers to the third highest card in a suit. The Ace can refer to a full house or straight flush, but it is usually used to refer to the Ace of a suit. When you are describing what you have in your hand, it is much more helpful if you specify which cards make up each suit.

One example of this is when you are playing Texas Hold ‘Em, and you are down to only four cards left. If you’re dealt an 8 of diamonds and a 3 of clubs, that is called a Full House, and it’s a better hand than an 8 of diamonds, a 3 of clubs, and an 8 of hearts, but it isn’t a Full House.

Full House: The highest hand of a suit

The Full House refers to a Full House of all five cards of a suit, called five cards. When you have five cards of a suit, you are at a Full House, and it is a great hand. A Full House can refer to a straight flush, a flush of one club, or a full house.

Four Queens: Five or more cards of a specific suit

Four Queens refers to a hand that has four cards of the same suit. Like the Full House, it is a great hand, and you should expect that it will always be the strongest hand.

One example of this is when you are playing Texas Hold ‘Em and you are dealt a 10 of diamonds. If you have four cards of the same suit, that is called a full house, and it is a great hand.

Four of a kind: Five cards of a specific suit

Four of a kind is exactly what it sounds like, four cards of a specific suit. It is important to mention that a 4 of diamonds is not a 4 of hearts. A 4 of diamonds is, however, a 4 of clubs.

Five of a kind: Five cards of a specific suit

Five of a kind refers to five cards of a specific suit, making a full house, or a flush. It can be used to refer to a straight, or an inside straight.

Ace Four: Three or more cards of a certain suit

The Ace Four refers to three or more cards of a specific suit, making a straight. For example, if you’re dealt a Ace and a Five, this hand is called a Straight, or Ace Four. You could also refer to the Ace Four as a Straight Two, or Straight Four.


Blind is an abbreviation of Blind Low, which is an approximate term for a hands-down tell. It’s an abbreviation of the poker term Lowball, which means being the first player out.

You can also refer to a hand that is in the hole, so to speak, called being Blinded, which is when you are still alive, but have no cards remaining in the hand.


Ante is an abbreviation of the poker term Alter Table. It’s simply another way of referring to the game’s foundation, the Main Table.


AAA, or Ange, is an abbreviation for the term Aggregate. It’s a way of adding up the cards you have in the hand. This is like the Total card game, except it only counts one player’s cards, not all cards.

The player who has the most cards in the hand wins. So, if you have the ace, king, and jack of spades, that is the Aggregate for the hand.

Bad Beat

A Bad Beat refers to when you are the last one standing, but lose all of your cards in a hand. It is the definition of a Comeback. A Comeback is when you make a comeback, even if you lost all of your cards before the hand.


Blackjack is a poker term for having an approximate hand of 11–12–9–8–7–6–5–4–3–2–1. It’s also the hand that is played in Casino or Blackjack.

The Showboat

The Showboat is the same as the Minor Sheet in that it’s the weakest hand you can have. It’s the most common hand in Blackjack.

The Showboat is a hand that has all the cards in the negative spot, with aces high, jacks low, kings left, and queens behind.


Flush refers to having five cards in the same suit. You have a “full house” if all four of your cards of that suit are in your hand.


The eight ball refers to when you have an eight card straight in your hand. In a game of Blackjack, an eight ball is the worst hand you can get.

Eightball seven

Eightball seven refers to a hand that has an ace, king, jack, queen, and nine in your hand.


Backdoor refers to a way of playing the game in which the dealer will add up your cards and give you an extra card in the middle of the game. This is usually a straight, and the dealer keeps adding up the cards from that player, in order of their color.

This is called the Backdoor and works like a yo-yo, from the dealer’s perspective. Once that player’s eight card straight is reached, they’re out of the game.


Broadway refers to the Main Table and Main Table Queen. It refers to a game of Blackjack that has a dealer that has a 9–11–10–X card.


Bang is an abbreviation of the poker term Double Barrel.


The Bulldog refers to the game of Blackjack where you start out with just one card in the hole, which is called Bulldog, and go into the “blind” that’s in the middle of the table.

It’s not that easy to come back once you’ve been “Bulldogged,” so you’re usually left with the biggest hand that can be drawn.


A Button refers to the bottom of the cards that sits in the middle of the table, so a one and a five sit at the bottom of the deck.

A Button is the same thing as a Jack, as well as the No. 7, which is the worst card in the deck, but has no rank. A hand with the No. 7 is called a Hold’em.


Baby face refers to a nine card hand with either one jack, two jacks, or two queens in the hole. A baby face five has one jack, two jacks, and a queen in the hole.


Burn is a poker term meaning to get wiped out. When you’ve got nothing to show for your hand, you’ve got a Burn.


Poker has tons of acronyms, nicknames, and codes of the game. Some of them are short for individual cards, others refer to the specific rules of the game, and others are almost poetic.

There’s a lot to learn about poker, but knowing the way the game is played is the most important aspect of poker. If you get stuck, just ask for advice. You’ll meet some really cool players and be a part of a lot of funny stories.

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