Blackjack terminology you need to know

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Blackjack has been one of the most popular casino games for well over a century. The relative simplicity of its core gameplay, compared to some other card games, has helped to set Blackjack apart from the pack.

But for players to properly experience this classic casino game, it’s important to have a firm understanding of its terminology ahead of time. Once you know the key terms to look out for then it’s simply a matter of playing the game, so read on for our list of essential Blackjack terminology you need to know.

Basic terminology

Starting off, let’s run through a few of the most basic bits of terminology related to Blackjack. These are the various actions that a player can take once they’ve been dealt their initial pair of cards, depending on how they wish to proceed with the game:

  • Hit – This is when a player chooses to take an additional card from the dealer, raising the value of their hand with the aim of getting closer to the value of 21.
  • Stand – On the other hand, if a player is content with the value of their hand, then they will opt to stand and receive no further cards.
  • Bust – This one isn’t a specific action but rather what happens when a player’s hand value goes over 21. If you receive a card that pushes your hand to a value of 22 or higher that means you’ve gone bust and have lost the game.
  • Split – When a player receives two cards of equal value in their initial hand, they may have the option to split them into two separate hands that they play at the same time.
  • Double down – If a player has a strong starting hand, then they may choose to double down, doubling their initial wager and committing to receiving just one more card before standing.

Knowing all these terms allows players to enter a game of Blackjack with a solid idea of how play works.

Advanced terminology

Next, we’ll cover some terminology that’s good to know but isn’t quite as essential to understanding the game’s flow. Players can get involved in a game without knowing these terms:

  • Soft hand – This is a hand that contains an ace card that can be valued at 11 without going bust, such as a hand holding an ace and a seven for a value of 18. This allows the player to take another hit with the chance of exceeding 21 as the ace can shift to its lower value.
  • Hard hand – A hand that either doesn’t contain an ace at all or has an ace that is already valued at 1. For instance, a hand containing a ten and a five is considered a hard 15.
  • Push – This occurs when both the player and dealer are found to have hands of equal value, creating an effective tie. In this situation, the player’s wager is automatically returned.

Knowing this terminology gives players a bit more of an insight into the game of Blackjack and some of its finer details.

With the knowledge of these key Blackjack terms players can approach the game and gain more of an appreciation for its gameplay.

Author Profile

Lee Clarke
Lee Clarke
Business And Features Writer


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