Solitaire Dictionary

Available:
Cards which can be legally moved from one pile to another are said to be available.

Blocked:
You are blocked or stuck when you can't make any more moves to make.

Build:
In some games, the piles (tableaus) are built down by alternate colors. This is the official way to say that a red 6 goes on a black 7, and a black 5 goes on a red 6. In many games the foundations are built up by following suit, which means that the 6 of Diamonds goes on the 5 of Diamonds. Some games build by following rank, which means a 4 of Diamonds goes on a 4 of Clubs.

Deal:
Adding cards to the layout by taking them from the hand. Dealing is different in every solitaire. In some games there is no hand and therefore no dealing at all.

Fan:
A pile that has been spread out, so that all of its cards are visible. Only the topmost card in the fan will be completely visible; the other cards will be partially overlapped and hidden. Fans may be spread left, right, up, or down; fanned down is the most common.

Foundation:
The goal of many solitaire games is to eventually move all the cards onto the foundation piles. Usually the foundations are empty at the start of a game, but in some games they may begin with a starter card.

Layout:
The pattern of cards on the table. The initial layout is the set of cards at the very start of the game, when you're ready to play but haven't made any moves yet.

Pile:
A pile of cards. Piles may be squared, so that only the topmost card can be seen, or they may be spread out in a fan. Piles can be empty, if there are no cards in them. Most solitaire games involve moving cards among various piles, with the goal of eventually getting them all into a particular foundation pile or group of foundation piles.

Rank:
The number value of a card. In solitaire, the Ace counts as one and is the lowest-ranked card, while the Jack, Queen, and King count as eleven, twelve, and thirteen.

Stock: A kind of pile. Usually a single pile of cards that can be drawn upon, one card at a time, during the game.

Suit:
The suits are Hearts , Spades , Diamonds , and Clubs . Hearts and Diamonds are colored red, of course, and Spades and Clubs are colored black.

Tableau:
The tableau piles are your "workspace." They're where you move cards back and forth while you look for opportunities to transfer cards to the foundations.

Topmost Card:
The topmost card of a pile is the one that is not overlapped by any other card, even when the pile is fanned down so that the topmost card is closest to the bottom of the screen.

Wastepile (Discard, Talon):
Often the cards from the hand are dealt face-up onto a wastepile. The top card of the wastepile can then be moved onto other piles according to the rules of the particular game. In some games, wastepiles hold cards permanently removed from play

solitaire dictionary