The Official Poker Glossary

A card game played in private homes, clubs, casinos and at tournaments. Poker is a game of chance, but skill is also important in the game. Players try to minimize their losses with weak hands and maximize their winnings with strong ones. Poker is popular in the United States where it has been called a national card game and its play and jargon are part of American culture.

The standard 53-card pack, with one joker, used in poker. The joker counts as a wild card and may be used to fill a straight, flush, or certain other poker hand values.

To announce that you intend to take a particular action, such as making a call or raising a bet. This is a binding declaration and should not be changed unless you verbally change your mind or knock on the table.

A player’s mathematical expected value from the current deal, calculated by multiplying the total amount of money in the pot by its probability of being won. Also known as equity.

A circular disc passed clockwise each round to indicate who is the nominal dealer for betting purposes. This disc is used in most poker games that are played in professional environments such as casinos, clubs and tournaments. In these environments the players are usually charged either an hourly fee to play or a small percentage of each pot, or both. Regardless of the environment, there are some basic rules common to all poker games.