Monday, July 26, 2010

Go Ask Dallas: What card game is Eric playing with Talbot in last night's True Blood Episode ?


What card game is Eric playing with Talbot in last night's True Blood Episode ?
Thanks, T

Oh, T - Dallas loves a mystery but this was kind of easy
The scene dialogue is :

E-Hey, wait a minute. That's not how you play Kaiserspiel.
T-Kaiserspiel? We're playing Karnoffel.
E- Oh. I'm sorry.
E- Wow. I haven't played this game in centuries.
T-Russell taught me this game when I was still human.

So its  Kaiserspiel and Karnöffel - Karnoffel is the older game , here are what the cards look like and it uses a slate to keep score on - do you see it on the table?


This game is a direct descendant of Karnöffel, one of the oldest card games known. Karnöffel was referred to as early as 1426 and was the subject of a many sermons and satirical writings in the following centuries. It may appear that most of its dreadfulness lies in the level of anarchy of the play - you can play any card you like to each trick, and can talk as much as you like about what cards you have and what you want your partner to do. In the 15th century what was apparently more shocking was the anarchic card order, taken as symbolising a disruption of the status quo, with the king being beaten by low cards, the Pope (6) beaten by the Under-knave, and special privileges given to the Devil (7).

The modern game of Kaiserspiel (often known as Kaiserjass, though it is not really has nothing to do with Jass games) is played in a small area around Stans and in the Engelberg valley, in Canton Nidwalden, south of Luzern in Switzerland. Of the surviving members of the Karnöffel family, this is the closest to the original game. The cards used are similar to the standard Swiss Jass pack, but the suits contain 3, 4, and 5 and not 8 or 9 (all the 8's and 9's should be removed from the pack before playing).

The Players
The game is played with fixed partnerships; when there are four players you sit opposite your partner as in Bridge. It is also possible for six to play; the partnerships then consist of teams of three, sitting alternately.
Each team elects its captain, and the scoring slate is placed on the table between the two captains.
The Object of the Game
The game is of the trick taking type, with trumps, but trumps had not been invented in their modern form when this game was developed, so they behave rather oddly. By the time the play of the hand starts, each player will have five cards, and the object is to win three of the five tricks. The value of the hand depends on how much betting there has been, and the winners score some number of points. The first side to get to an agreed number of points (often 101) wins.

read on here 

KARNOFFEL-Karnöffel is a card game which probably came from the upper-German language area in Europe in the first quarter of the 15th century. It first appeared "listed in a municipal ordinance of Nördlingen, Bavaria, in 1426 among the games that could be lawfully played at the annual city fête[1]. This makes the game the oldest identifiable European card game in the history of playing cards.

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