Joker card (1875)

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Thu Sep 25 22:13:01 UTC 2003

   OED appears to have 1885 for the "joker."  ("The Joker" was not coined by the Steve Miller Band.)

   28 November 1875, CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, pg. 9, col. 1:


_The Science of "Beating the Gillies"_

_Three-Card Monte, "Head Faking," The "Case,"_
   _"Box Rocket," "Ring-Board," &c._

   The "baby," the "joker," the "old man" are samples of the titles lavished upon this card.
(The third card in three-card monte--ed.)
   A "capper," or in other words a man who lures the victims to their fate, keeps a lookout at the door of the side-show or on the lot outside for subjects who appear sufficiently green to be easily robbed.
   The trick of marking the cards is sometimes varied by the dealer himself turning an edge of the "joker," or, in slang phrase, "crimping" it.
   The "ringed finger" is the sland phrase that designates the finger that is used in this performance.

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