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Solo, Or Solo Whist

SOLO, OR SOLO WHIST, a card game which is a modification of whist, the chief distinctive feature being that a single player generally has to oppose the other three. The game came into vogue in England towards the end of the 1pth century. The following " declarations " can be made, the order being important: (i) proposition; (2) acceptance; (3) solo; (4) misere; (5) abondance (or abundance); (6) misere ouverte; (7) abandonee diclaree (declared abundance). Proposition and acceptance go together, as will be seen; of the rest " solo " can be declared over " proposition," misere over solo, and so on. The stakes regarding sixpence as the unit are: for proposition, sixpence; for solo, sixpence (sometimes a shilling); for misere, a shilling; for abundance, eighteenpence; for open misere, two shillings; for declared abundance, three shillings. A further stake may be arranged for " overtricks," to be paid to the player for every trick made above the number proposed, and for " undertricks," to be paid by the player for every trick below that number.

A full pack is used; players cut as at whist for deal and seats; the cards may be dealt singly, but are more commonly dealt by threes, with a single card for the last round. The last card is turned up and left exposed for a round, whether it is used for trumps or not. One deal constitutes a game. The laws of whist obtain, where applicable, in such matters as following suit, revoking, the passing of the deal, etc. The player on the dealer's left is first to declare or pass: if he proposes, any player may accept, the right going first to the player on his left, but any player when his turn comes may make a higher declaration than any that has gone before him, though a player whose call has been superseded may amend his call afterwards. If all the players pass, either there is a new deal, or by arrangement there is a general misere, when the player who takes the most tricks sometimes, the last trick pays a single stake all round.

The Dedaratiens. (i) Proposal: This is an invitation to another player to " accept," i.e. to join the proposer in an attempt to make eight tricks. (2) Solo : . Here a player undertakes to win five tricks, playing against the other three in combination. (3) Misere : This is a declaration by a player that he will not win a single trick. There are no trumps, but the turn-up card is left exposed for the first round. If the caller wins a trick the game is at an end (there are no overtricks or undertricks), but he has a right to see the opponents' hands, to be sure that no revoke has been made. A trick that has been turned may not be seen -afterwards. (4) Abundance is a declaration that a player will make nine tricks single-handed. The caller makes any suit trumps, but abundance in the turn-up suit takes precedence over abundance in other suits. The trump suit must be declared after the other players have passed, before the first round is played. (5) Misere ouverte: This call is a declaration to lose all thirteen tricks, but after the first trick the caller's cards are placed on the table, though he may play them as he pleases. (6) Declared Abundance: This is a declaration of the caller to make all thirteen tricks by his own hand. He makes his own trumps and always leads, but a declaration in the suit of the turn-up card takes precedence over others. The game ends when the caller loses a trick. There are no undertricks.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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