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Blackjack Terms and Definitions

BLACKJACK or NATURAL
is a hand that comprises two cards totaling 21 (an A and a ten-valued card). Note: an A and a ten after split is not a Blackjack, but a total 21.
BUST
a loosing Blackjack hand that exceeds 21.
COUNTING
a strategy unwelcome by most of the casinos, that includes keeping track of the dealt cards in order to see the percentage of small/large cards in the deck, thus realising the odds.
FIRST BASE
the first player at the Blackjack table, from which the dealer starts dealing the cards.
HOLE
one of the dealer's cards that is dealt face down. The hole card is flipped over only after all the players have played their cards.
HIT
asking the dealer for another card.
STAND
to ask for no more cards. The hand that stands stops playing and will compete with the dealer's hand.
SPLIT
when first two cards dealt to the player are a pair (two eights, two A) they can be split into two independent hands by increasing the initial bet twice.
DOUBLE DOWN
an option that allows doubling the initial bet and receiving only one extra card and automatically STAND. Note: double only when you are positive that the extra card will make your hand beat the dealer's hand.
INSURANCE
if the dealer's up card is an A, the players will be offered to insure half of their bets from possible dealer's BLACKJACK A J. Insurance usually pays 2:1. If dealer's hand is not a BLACKJACK A J, the insurance bet is lost, but the hand continues playing.
EVEN MONEY
if the dealer's up card is an A, and the player has a BLACKJACK A J, the dealer may offer "even money". This bet is a lot like insurance, however, the player bets that a dealer has a BLACKJACK A J and in case he does, in addition to a push, the player gets paid 2:1 for an even money bet.
PUSH
a tie between the player's hand and the dealer's hand. A tie occurs when both the dealer and the player have unbusted hands of the same total. Note: a 21 doesn't tie a BLACKJACK A J.
SURRENDER
an option that allows a player to give up his hand by forfeiting half of his original bet.
EARLY SURRENDER
a surrender, allowed before the dealer checks his HOLE card for a BLACKJACK A J.
LATE SURRENDER
a surrender, performed only after dealer checks his HOLE card for a BLACKJACK A J. In case dealer actually does have a BLACKJACK A J, all the bets will be lost, thus the option of Late surrender is not very pleasant.
TWIST
in Pontoon's terminology means to HIT (take another card).
STICK
in Pontoon's terminology means to STAND (take no more cards).
BUY
in Pontoon's terminology means to DOUBLE DOWN (only in Pontoon a player can still TWIST after he Buys and he may Buy on any hand from 2 to 4 cards).
FIVE CARD TRICK
in Pontoon it is any 5-card combination that is not a BUST.
PONTOON
a BLACKJACK A J or a NATURAL in Pontoon game's terminology
BASIC BLACKJACK STRATEGY CHART
a table with abbreviations that represents all possible game situations and mathematically best player's solutions.
RUNNING COUNT
the count of cards made by the player by adding or subtracting one according to the rank of card dealt from the deck.
TRUE COUNT
card counting strategy that involves the result of the running count and divides it into number of decks used in a specific game.
FACE-UP CARD
one of the dealer's cards that is dealt face up, so that everyone sees its value.
HARD HAND
any hand without an A or a hand with two or more Aces that can only count as 1.
SOFT HAND
any hand that has an A that can be counted as 11 (e.g. a hand of an A and 7).
SWITCH
option offered in a Switch Blackjack game. Player can switch the second cards dealt to two initial hands.

“Remember this: The house doesn't beat the player. It just gives him the opportunity to beat himself”

Nicholas (Nick the Greek) Dandalos