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Bridge can be as bad as NASA for confusing acronyms and lingo! Welcome to the Jargon Jungle - a glossary of bridge terms designed to help you hack your way through to a better understanding of the game of bridge. Just click on the first letter of the word you wish to find!  Each letter of the alphabet reloads the page.

Also, if you would like to suggest a term not presently included on the list, or see a correction that needs to be made, please drop us a note.


Table Talk: Conveying illegal and unauthorized information while the hand is going on. Strictly speaking no comment about any facet of the hand is allowed while bidding or play is going on. Some leeway is given during casual games and in the interest of humor, but caution is best taken.

Tap: See Forcing Defense.

Tapped Out: Forced to ruff to the point that you lose trump control.

Team Game, or Team-of-Four: The second most common form of tournament bridge play, after pairs. You enter the tournament as a team of four (or more, but only four play at a time). You sit with one pair N-S at one table and the other pair E-W at another table, playing against another team. A set number of boards (hands) are played at both tables, and then the results at the two tables are compared (usually by IMPs) to determine a match winner.

Texas Transfer: Similar to a Jacoby Transfer, but done at the 4-level and showing 6+ card suits, and usually denying any interest in slam. (4D transfers to hearts, 4H transfers to spades.) Often played over opponents competition if the competing bid is less than 3C.

Throw-in: To deliberately lose a trick when it will cause the opponent taking it to be endplayed.

Transfer: Any artificial bid which asks partner to bid a specific suit so it can be played from partner's side of table. Examples see: Jacoby Transfer, Texas Transfer.

Transportation: In declarer play, this is the means by which one gets from the declarer's hand to the dummy and back. This is very important because often one has to play a card (or cards) from one hand to maximize the number of tricks to be taken. If one does not have sufficient entries (a way to get from one hand to the other) - either to the dummy or to declarer's hand - one is said to have transportation trouble.

Trump: A suit, which in the process of bidding has been established as Trump, has the potential to take any other trick. For example, in a contract where clubs have been established as Trump, a heart is led - but you have no hearts (are void in hearts) - you can play a club (TRUMP) and take the trick ... provided no player following you plays a higher club (trump) than the one you played.

Trump Coup: The lead of a plain suit card from a hand without any trumps, through a player with only trumps left, thus forcing a ruff, which can then be over ruffed in the next hand. It achieves the same effect as a finesse in the trump suit but without requiring there to be a trump to lead. Entries are critical in planning this play.

Two-over-One (2/1): A two-level bid of a lower-ranking suit in response to partner's opening one-level suit bid, or short for Two-over-One Game Force.

Two-over-One Game Force (2/1 GF): 2/1 GF is a systemic variant of Eastern Scientific, which in turn is a systemic variant of Standard American. 2/1 GF also borrows some ideas from K-S. (Kaplan-Sheinwold). 2/1 GF simply means that 2 level responses to 1 of a suit are natural, but also forcing to game. e.g. S-2C, 1S-2H, 1H- 2D, etc. It is a matter of style whether 1D-2C is similarly forcing. There are also two basic variations: one due to Hardy, the other to Lawrence. In one, a 2/1 bid is an absolute game force, in the other, it is only a game force most of the time (there are exceptions).

Two Way Bid: A bid which could show two completely different types of hands, and which will be clarified by the next round of bidding. These treatments are only for advanced players. The most common (and currently fashionable) example is the Multi-2D opener which shows either a weak 2 bid in either major or a very strong balanced hand (20+ HCP). Generally, it will be a weak 2H or 2S bid, but not always. Partner of the opener can generally not pass until the hand is clarified.

Two-Way Finesse: A suit combination such as A J 2 opposite K 10 3, which offers the opportunity to assume that either one of the opponents has the a particular outstanding card and finesse accordingly. On some hands the decision may be avoided by using another technique such as a throw-in or squeeze.


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