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The derivation of the word "trump"

edited August 2009 in All Things Bridge
I was on a ship that had trivia each day. One day, one of the questions concerned the source of the word "trump" in the game of bridge. Since I was running the bridge program on the ship, I knew which passengers were the bridge players. To my surprise, neither I nor any of the recognizable bridge players knew how the word trump came to be -- but many of the other passengers were able to figure it out. Maybe it is because we bridge players think not of the word itself, but of the meaning of the word.

All the non-players simple thought that "trump" sounds a lot like "triumph," so they said that the word is derived from the word "triumph." And they were right! Did any bridge player here know this before reading it? I tried it at my club in New York, and no one knew or was able to guess the word triumph was the source of the word trump. I was very surprised!


  • edited 10:56AM
    Yes I did know this. What is more interesting is the derivation of 'Bridge'. And also the 'word ruff'
    Also did you know that a chicane refers to a hand without any trumps ?
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