Hoyle's Rules of Games

Page 179 - 181

Third Revised and Updated Edition, 2001


From three to seven, The four-handed partner-ship game is described below. Partners face each other across the table.


A pack of 32 cards from a regular pack of 52 discard all twos to sixes inclusive. The highest trump is the jack, called right bower. The second-highest is the other jack of the same color, called left bower. For example if spades are trump the spade jack is right bower and the club jack is left bower. The rest of the trump suit ranks: A(third-best) K, Q, 10, 9, 8, 7. In each non-trump suit the rank is: A (high) k, Q, J (if not left bower)10, 9, 8, 7.

The Deal

Each player receives five cards, dealt in batches of 3-2 or 2-3. The dealer must adhere to whichever plan he commences.) The last card of the pack (belonging to the dealer) is turned face up on the table; This is the turn-up.


The turn-up proposes the trump suit for that deal, but it becomes trump only if some layer accepts it. Beginning with the player at the left of the dealer, each player in turn may pass or may accept the suit of the turn-up(if it has not been accepted before him). An opponent of the dealer accepts by saying 'I order it u'. The dealers says 'I assist' . or dealer says 'I take it up' If all four players pass (dealer passes by saying 'I turn it down', the turn-up is turned face down. Then player to the left of the dealer has a chance to pass of to name a trump suit (if none has been named ahead of him)The named trump suit must be different from the turn-up. Whoever decides the trump suit by accepting the turn-up or naming trump in the second round, becomes the maker. The maker has the right to say 'I play alone,' whereupon his partner must discard his hand and stay out of the play. Either opponent of a lone maker may say "I defend alone," whereupon his partner must stay out.

The play

If the turn-up is accepted, dealer has the right to use it as part of his hand, discarding any other card face down. (The turn-up card is customarily left on the table until played) Against a lone maker, the opening lead is made by the opponent at his left, Otherwise, the opening lead is made by the player to the left of the dealer, regardless of who is the maker. The hands are played out in five tricks, A player must follow suit to a lead if able; if unable to follow suit he may play any card. A trick is won by the highest trump on it, or if it contains no trump , by the highest card played of the suit led. The winner of a trick leads to the next.


Only the side that wins three or more tricks scores. Winning all five tricks is called a march. When the making side fails to win the majority it is said to be euchred . The making side, when both are playing, scores 1 point for winning three or four tricks, of 2 for a march. A maker playing alone scores 1 for three or four tricks or 4 points for a march. Opponents of the maker, when both are playing score 2 for a euchre. When there is a lone defender the score is 2 for winning three or four tricks, or 4 for a march. It is customary for each side to keep track of points it has won by use of two low cards, a three and a four. Game. The first side to reach a total of 5 points wins a game. (By agreement this can be fixed at 7 or 10)

Irregularities in Euchre

New Deal

There must be a new deal by the same dealer if a card is exposed or found faced in the pack during the deal or if the pack is found to be incorrect.

False Declaration

If a player uses the wrong term in accepting the turn-up (as "I order it up" by the dealer's partner), there is no penalty; he is deemed to have accepted the turn-up. If in a second round of declaring a player names the turn-up, his call is void and his side may not make trump.

Declaration Out of Turn

If a player declares out of turn, except in saying "Pass" his call is void and his side may not make trump.

Wrong Number of Cards

If before the first trick is quitted, any hand is found to have the wrong number of cards there must be a new deal by the same dealer; if the error is discovered at a later time, play continues and the offending side may not score for that deal.

Lead Out of Turn

If a player leads out of turn and the trick is gathered before the error is noticed, it stands as regular. Otherwise the erroneous lead becomes an exposed card(see below) and any other card played to the trick may be retracted without penalty. At the next proper turn of the offending side to lead, the opponent at the right of leader may name the suit to be led. This penalty does not apply to a lone player, but he may be required to retract a lead out of turn.

Exposed Card

If a player (not playing alone) exposes a card from his hand except in proper play, he must leave it face up on the table and play it at the first legal opportunity.

Illegal Information

If a player looks at a quitted trick or gives illegal information to his partner, the opponent at the right of the leader may name the suit of the offending side to lead.


Failure to follow suit when able to is a revoke A player may correct his revoke before the trick is gathered ; otherwise it stands as established. For an established revoke, the opponents of the offender may score 2 points or may deduct 2 points from the revoking side (both playing) or 4 points from a lone.

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26 comments so far

Hoyle’s rules of Games (2001) page 181, “Wrong number of cards”.

A disagreement arose as to the interpretation of this section. I contend that this paragraph applies strictly to the dealers responsibility. I also contend that when it is a player error resulting in the wrong number of cards at the end of a hand, it should be considered a revoke. My opponent insists that either issue is resolved by a re-deal.

Can you provide us a resolution?

Posted by John  on Friday, 07.18.14 @ 07:28am| #3242

If the mis-deal is discovered before the 1st book is turned over (first hand complete) then the same dealer re-deals.


If found after first hand, play the hand out as normal.(yes, someone will still have an extra card at the end). Now the team that has the wrong number of cards in their hand can not make a point.(they can not score) Their opponents still can. Lets say team A dealt the wrong number of cards to his partner. If they were to get euchred on that hand the opponents would get 2 points. However if they did take three tricks (made their point) they would not receive any points for that hand. The deal is then passed on to the next player.

If one of the opponents (team B) was dealt the incorrect number of cards team A would still make their score, and if they euchred team A They would not receive two points. The deal is then passed on to the next player.

Posted by Don  on Friday, 07.18.14 @ 07:28am| #3243

We had a situation at one of our latest euchre games and would appreciate your insight as to how to handle the situation.

The cards were dealt....and all players had 5 cards. At the end of the hand one of the players had a card left. In reviewing the quitted tricks it was found that a player did not play a card on one of the tricks. Would this be considered a revoke or a misdeal? How should the play continue.....a redeal by the same dealer or redeal passing the deal to the next or score 2 points for the opponents for the revoke or renege?

Would appreciate your opinion and if there is any rule that would cover this situation.

Posted by Carole  on Friday, 07.18.14 @ 12:37pm| #3244

If you are sure that every one had 5 cards at the start then I would have to say the non-offending get 2 points. If not what is to stop anyone from using "forgetting to play" as a defense strategy?

BTW - penalty would be 4 points if a lone is being played.

While it does not specifically say anything about lones, I would have to say that if this happened during a lone call the non-offending would get 4 points.

BTW this should apply to the above answer as well.

Posted by Don  on Friday, 07.18.14 @ 12:38pm| #3245

Is it true that you must have at least one card of the trump you want to make it in your hand and if your only card is what would become the left would not count?

Posted by kathy  on Saturday, 09.5.15 @ 07:20am| #3463

I was ordered up by the person to my left as I was the dealer. I picked up the top trump card and then I threw that card away as a discard. I then called miss deal as I had no ace, face or trump. Is this an illegal move?

Posted by Bill  on Wednesday, 11.25.15 @ 15:21pm| #3500

Question: I'm the dealer. The first person to the left of me tells me to pick it up. He plays before I discard. Caught up in the card he plays, I forget to discard. At the end of the round, I am obviously holding on to an extra card. The person to the left tells me they get two points because I failed to discard. I respond by saying he played too soon, and that play begins once the discard is made. Who is correct, if either of us?

Posted by Jeffrey Shade  on Monday, 01.25.16 @ 07:31am| #3559

That has happened to many of us. Because of the possibility of it changing the way the hand could be played it is a 2 point penalty.

Posted by Don  on Monday, 01.25.16 @ 09:10am| #3560

One player "goes alone", The partner of this player did not hear the call and played in turn. A card from the partner's hand has been exposed and could possibly affect the remaining cards to be played. How can this be resolved? Is this considered playing out of turn? Should 2 or 4 points be awarded to the non-baming team?

Posted by Sheryl  on Monday, 05.16.16 @ 21:13pm| #3628

The lone call is void and the hand is played out as a normal hand.

Posted by Don  on Tuesday, 05.17.16 @ 09:34am| #3629

I have a question. You must have at least one card of what has been turn to call it trump. BUt if you have only the other bower, can you order it ,and call it trump?

Posted by Julia Frenette  on Tuesday, 01.10.17 @ 09:37am| #3744

No, you do not need to hold a suit in your hand to pick up that suit. And yes, you may pick up one bower when you only hold the other in your hand. Please note that there is NO rule about needing a natural trump in your hand to pick up. If there was then Hoyle would have it listed.

Posted by Don  on Tuesday, 01.10.17 @ 10:02am| #3745

When the dealer turns down the turn-up card, shouldn't that card be placed face up under the pile? This is consistent with the exposed card rule and is cited by Hoyle's Rules of Games, Euchre, Page 179 - 181, Third Revised and Updated Edition, 2001, as "customary". It also helps speed play as all players can see the suit which can not subsequently be named trump.

Posted by Arthur  on Thursday, 03.2.17 @ 09:40am| #3778

I do not believe that rule was intended to include the turn card. It was meant for a card that accidentally falls out of ones hand. It would also include one accidentally exposed during the deal.

Many rules are subject to interpretation, but I have not seen this rule used that way.

Posted by Don  on Thursday, 03.2.17 @ 11:20am| #3779

I agree that the Exposed Card rule is meant for accidental exposures, I am merely saying that keeping the turn up card face up/visible and placed under the pile to indicate it has been rejected by the dealer is consistent with the spirit of the Exposed Card rule in that it is a card known to all and helps speed up the game by avoiding all those "what was turned down?" questions in the 3rd and 4th hours of game play (or after the 4th or 5th beer). In no way did I intend for the Exposed Card rule's "play at first legal opportunity" be applied to the turn-up card accepted by the dealer.

I just noticed the Hoyle Rules of Games edition in your title is the same one edition I cited in my original post. Now I'll have to go and find my edition. Sigh.

Posted by art  on Thursday, 03.2.17 @ 17:33pm| #3780

That is a rule meant for young children just learning to play. Adults play the cards they are dealt.

Posted by Don  on Friday, 04.7.17 @ 12:13pm| #3803

I called a loner in hearts. The person to my right was the opening lead of the hand. He lead with trump. I've always played that you do not start with trump. Is there a rule for this?

Posted by Theresa  on Sunday, 04.30.17 @ 05:12am| #3819

after the dealer has turned down the top card of the pile, can another player pick up that pile and see what the 4 cards are

Posted by Mar  on Saturday, 05.20.17 @ 23:45pm| #3829


No, These cards must remain unseen.

Posted by Don  on Sunday, 05.21.17 @ 06:57am| #3830

Must you have a heart in your hand if you call hearts Trump.

Posted by Bob  on Wednesday, 10.25.17 @ 14:23pm| #3892

I have dealt and turned up right bower does an opponent need to hold a trump to order me up or can they order me up without any trumps

Posted by Colleen  on Thursday, 10.26.17 @ 22:09pm| #3893

For both of the above questions, The answer is the same. You do not need a suit in your hand to order or pick-up that suit. If you needed the suit in your hand then it would have been stated in the rules.


Posted by Don  on Friday, 10.27.17 @ 07:23am| #3894

Can you look ato the last trick played once it has been turned over

Posted by Rachelle  on Monday, 11.20.17 @ 08:09am| #3908

In a very competitive setting No. It's up to the player to remember.

However, most players won't mind. I'd ask first.

Posted by Don  on Monday, 11.20.17 @ 08:52am| #3909

I'm still not clear on whether or not the DEALER can pick up the "trump card" if he does not have another card of that suit in his hand. If I have all three aces of the other three suits but the Jack of Spades is turned up when I am the dealer, can I still make SPADES trump????

Posted by Carol sabotka  on Thursday, 11.30.17 @ 19:38pm| #3914


Posted by Don  on Thursday, 11.30.17 @ 21:59pm| #3915

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