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Rummy , design for a picture of the inside of the lid of a cigarette box by Gabi Lagus Möschl, 1928.

Rummy , Rummy (in Austria also Jolly ), American rummy (from rum or rummy : see article Gin Rummy ), is a card game for two to six people. In Austria the game is distributed under the original American name Rummy ; the seemingly French name rummy , which is common in Germany, is derived from it, but in France the game is called Rami .

Rummy is less of a single game and more a collective name for a family of combination and placement games with cards that emerged from the Mexican Conquian . Depending on the variant, the game is played with one or two packs of French cards of 52 hands, and up to three jokers are added to the two packs - depending on the variant .

In Austria and Germany, German Rummy ( Rummy with a display ) is mainly played with 52 sheets of paper and six jokers. The most popular variety in the USA and Great Britain is Gin Rummy , a variant for two people. The rummy family also includes the well-known canasta , which in turn is played in many variations, including the samba canasta . A more modern implementation of Rummy as a placement game is the Rummikub .

The German Rummy Association exists in Germany .

Rummy with display (German Rummy)


Rummy is played with two packs of French playing cards of 52 sheets and three jokers each, so a total of 110 cards by two to six people. Each player plays for himself, there are no partnerships.

The aim of the game is to arrange your hand into pieces and to lay out (to report ). The player who can lay out all cards first wins the game.


Before the first game begins, the cards are shuffled and laid face down in an arc. Each player draws a card; the player with the highest card chooses his place and is first dealer or divider. The other players sit on the dealer's left according to the order of the cards drawn.

After that, the deal alternates clockwise after each game. The dealer shuffles the cards again and lets his right-hand neighbor cut.

In many cases, the rule applies that if a player finds a joker while withdrawing , he can keep it ( rob it , not to be confused with exchanging a joker ).

The cards are dealt face down one at a time in clockwise order, each player is dealt thirteen cards, the dealer takes fourteen himself .

The remaining cards are placed face down in a pile ( talon ) in the middle of the table.

The figures

Figures are combinations of at least three cards:

  • Sets of three or four cards of the same rank in different suits , such as K– K– K or 3– 3– 3– 3,
  • Sequences ( rows , sequences ) of three or more consecutive cards of the same color; such as A– 2– 3, 8– 9– 10– B or D– K– A, but not K– A– 2.

Figures can also be formed with the help of jokers; a joker can replace any other card; For example B- D J - A or 6 6- J .

It is not permitted to place a piece with only one natural card and two jokers; In a sequence of at least four cards, however, two jokers may follow one another directly, for example 3– J - J - 6 is a permitted combination.

The card values

  • The king, queen and jack face cards are worth ten points each,
  • the counting cards two to ten count by their eyes,
  • the ace counts in the set or in a sequence after the king as well as eleven points in the final accounting, but only one point in the first report in the sequence A-2-3.
  • When it is first reported, a joker counts as many points as the card it replaces; A joker counts twenty points for the final settlement.


The dealer is the first player to move. He must now report figures, provided it meets the requirement for the initial report , and finished his train, by revealing a card in addition to the impact ( stores ). Then it is the turn of the player on his left.

Each subsequent player begins his game by playing

  • either the card that his predecessor placed face up
  • or the top face-down card from the talon

picks up ( buys ). A player may then report cards and he ends his turn by discarding a card face up on the discard pile.

Sometimes it is played in such a way that a player can only pick up the top card of the discard pile if he immediately displays it in a message, be it that he uses the card for his initial message - in this case it counts for reaching the required 40 Points (see below) with - be it that he uses them in another message.

The first message

For the first display of the cards, the total of the registered cards must have a value of at least 40 points (but see variants ).

Additional Reports

If a player has placed his first report, he may, if it is his turn, play further pieces at any time; the point value is only relevant for the first report, but no longer for follow-up reports.

Apply to figures that have already been laid out

If a player has laid out his first report, he may, when it is his turn, add further single cards to pieces that have already been laid out; It does not matter whether the piece on display was reported by the player in question or by one of his opponents.

Example: On the table is 2– 3– 4. If a player holds A and 5 in his hand, he may add these two cards to the sequence that was laid out.

Once registered, cards may no longer be taken back or placed in hand.

Exchanging a joker

When exchanging a joker

If there is a piece with a joker on the table, for example 6– 6– J , and a player holds the card in his hand which is replaced by the joker, here the 6 or 6, he can use the joker replace with this card. The joker must be placed in a new entry immediately and must not be included in your own hand. The exchange of a joker is only allowed after the first report has been displayed.

The rules of the German Skat Association are stricter on this point: according to them, a joker in a set may only be exchanged if the set is completed with four cards of the same rank.


The player who can lay down all of his cards first and places his last card face down on the discarding kick - to mark the end of the game - wins the game. All other players get as many bad points as they still have eyes in their hands.

Hand rummy

If a player can lay out all his cards at once before any other player has reported cards, this is hand rummy ; in the case of hand rummy, the minimum requirement of 40 points is waived. The bad points of the other players are counted twice in this game.


The rules of the game with laying out differ from game round to game round; in contrast to other card games such as bridge , canasta or skat, there are no binding rules.

However, the German Skat Association has a department that deals with rummy and in 2007 for the first time held a rummy Olympiad in Germany. There they play according to the official rummy rules of the German Skat Association.

The rules given above (see bibliography) can therefore be tightened or weakened at your own discretion. Frequent system deviations relate to a.

  • the number of jokers used
  • the number of points required for the initial report (sometimes only 30, 35 or more than 40)
  • the method of counting and possible uses of the ace (sometimes generally ten or eleven points, and also in the sequence KA-2)
  • the possibility of a player whose turn it is not to receive a card that has just been placed by knocking on the table (as in Mah-Jongg )

You should therefore clarify these questions before starting a game.

Robber rummy

Robber Rummy is a special variant of the game with laying out, from this type of game Rummikub was created. In the Räuber-Rummy, the displayed messages may not only be expanded, but the cards contained in the messages may also be completely recombined.


  • On the table is 5– 6– 7– 8– 9; one player holds the second 7 in his hand. He can now take the 5 and the 6 from the table and use his 7 in a new message.
  • On the table are 5– 6– 7 and 5– 6– J ; the player has 5, 6 and 9 in his hand. He can now combine these cards together with the table cards and place 5– 5– 5, 6– 6– 6 and 7– J - 9.

It should be noted that the jokers on display can find new uses without actually being exchanged.

Otherwise, all rules of the game with display apply, but robber rummy is also played without a discard pile.

Rummy without display (Viennese Rummy)


In contrast to Rummy with display, in these types of games you try to arrange your hand into pieces and either lay down all cards at once ( to call out Rummy ) or to knock , i.e. H. report all cards but a remainder of little value .

As with the game with laying out, there are no uniform rules for rummy without laying out: Rather, several, often almost identical, types of games are known under different names: Wiener Rummy , 101 Rummy , Elimination Rummy , Knock Rummy etc. Another, albeit very special, variant for two people is gin rummy .

The rules set out below are therefore not to be regarded as binding in the same way as those of the game of chess . Unless otherwise stated, the rules of the game with laying out apply accordingly, for example with regard to the pieces, the evaluation of the cards, etc.

Rummy without laying out is played with two packs of French playing cards of 52 sheets and only one joker each, so a total of 106 cards by two to six people. Each player is dealt ten cards, the dealer takes eleven .

The players now try to improve their hand by buying and discarding cards, as in the game with display.

End of a game

A rummy call, cf. Gin rummy

A game continues until a player calls rummy , i.e. H. displays ten cards in messages and discards his eleventh card. Then all other players lay out their pieces and count - as with gin rummy - the total of their bad cards, i.e. H. those cards that cannot be placed in figures.

A game can also be ended by knocking : If a player only has five or fewer eyes in bad cards, he can knock. He then lays out his sheet of paper openly like a rummy call and reports his bad points. The other players do the same, but in contrast to a rummy call, if they knock they can try again to improve their hand by buying and discarding a card. It is not permitted to put on figures of other players.


Rummy without laying it out is i. A. played after games; a game consists of several individual games. Before the start of a game, each player pays a stake of five chips into the cashier ( pot or bottle ).

After each individual game, the knocker or rummy caller receives what is known as knocking money from all other participants still in the game . H. paid a chip. Furthermore, the bad points received in this game are noted for each player and added continuously.

As soon as a player has collected 101 or more bad points, he is eliminated; if all but one player are eliminated, the remaining player wins the pot and the game is over.

If a player has already accumulated 81 or more but not yet 101 bad points, he can buy back an additional stake of five chips in the pot and reduce his number of bad points to the number of the second worst participant still in the game. However, each player only has the right to repurchase once during the game.

Rummy family games

As mentioned earlier, there are numerous rule variations and rummy games. Therefore, only a selection of the most popular is mentioned here, without claiming to be exhaustive: some games have several names, some names are not unique but are used for more than one type of game.

  • 101 rum
  • 500 rum ( Pinochle Rummy, Michigan Rummy)
  • Bankers' rummy
  • Boat House Rum
  • Canasta and derived from it Samba-Canasta , as well as Bolivia, Uruguay, Brazilian, Chilean, Italian and Cuban canasta etc.
  • Carrousel (American Robber Rummy)
  • Combination Rummy (Liverpool Rummy)
  • Conquian (Conquain, Coon Can, Coon King), the ancestor of the rummy games
  • Continental rum
  • Contract Rummy (Hollywood Rummy, King Rummy, Liverpool Rummy, Shanghai Rummy, Zioncheck)
  • German Rummy (Rummy with display)
  • Double rum
  • Elimination rummy
  • Fortune Rummy (Oklahoma Rummy)
  • Gin Rummy and derived from it Oklahoma Gin, Hollywood Gin and Jersey Gin
  • Kaluki (Caloochi)
  • Knock rummy
  • Krambambuli
  • Mississippi Rummy
  • Okay
  • Oklahoma Rummy
  • Panguingue
  • Persian rummy (partner rummy)
  • Poker rummy
  • Queen City Rum
  • Rami (French Rummy)
  • Robber rummy
  • Scale 40
  • Straight rummy
  • Tonk (Tunk)
  • Stair rummy
  • Tryce
  • Hungarian rummy
  • Vatican
  • Viennese rummy



German-language literature

  • Fritz Babsch: International and Austrian card game rules , Piatnik Vienna 1983
  • Johannes Bamberger: The most popular card games , Verlag Perlen-Reihe , Volume 648, 21st edition, Vienna 19 ??
  • Claus D. Grupp: Rummy and Canasta in all variations , Falken-Verlag Niedernhausen / Ts, 1982
  • Rudolf Heinrich [d. i. Rudolf Bretschneider]: Rummy - Rummy international Alle Spielarten , Verlag Perlen-Reihe, Volume 650, 7th edition, Vienna 19 ??
  • John Smith-Creighton: Das Rummyspiel , 3rd edition, Vienna 1927

English-language literature

  • The United States Playing Card Company, Joli Quentin Kansil, Editor: Official Rules of Card Games , 90th Edition, 2004
  • Albert H. Morehead, Richard L. Frey, Geoffrey Mott-Smith: The New Complete Hoyle Revised , Doubleday, New York, 1991
  • Albert H. Morehead, Geoffrey Mott-Smith: Hoyle's Rules of Games , 2nd revised edition. A Signet Book, 1983
  • David Parlett : Oxford Dictionary of Card Games , Oxford University Press Oxford New York 1992/96
  • David Parlett: The Oxford Guide to Card Games , Oxford University Press Oxford New York 1990
  • John Scarne : Scarne on Card Games , New York 1949/65, Courier Dover Publications Reprint 2004

Individual evidence

  1. Rummy rules of the German Skat Association (PDF; 72 kB)

Web links

Wiktionary: Rummy  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations