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  • Italian Card Games

    By Anthony Parente

    When I was growing up my father and I would sit down and pass the time by playing briscola, scopa, and tressette, three classic Italian card games. It was a learning experience for me because I was use to playing with a 52 card deck not a 40 card deck like the Italians use. Even though I didn't always win or even understand the rules it was a fun and enjoyable for the both of us. I miss those days. Ever since my father passed away it never seemed the same playing these games until recently.

    A few weeks ago I was sitting outside on the patio when my wonderful wife brought out a deck of Italian cards and wanted to know how to play. I never expected my wife to come out with a deck of Italian cards, but when she did it reminded me of when I first wanted to learn. The electricity seemed to come back and I felt like it did when I first learned. The only difference is that I was now teaching instead of learning. The one problem with teaching was that I could only remember how to play scopa. My wife and I played a few hands until the winds picked up and sent us indoors. I sat down and tried to remember how to play briscola and tressette, but it wasn't ringing a bell. Not knowing what to do I decided to turn to the one place I thought could help me, the Web. In a few minutes I was able to find the rules for many Italian card games. Not only did I find the rules I also came across some programs that you can play online or download and play on the computer. Below are the rules for briscola, scopa, and tressette along with the program you can play online or download to your computer. Just in case you need to see how the game is played there is a video clip at the bottom that walks you through the game of briscola.

    Rules Freeware/Shareware/Online
    Briscola Briscola Mano a Mano Briscola
    Scopa Scopa Scopa Mano a Mano
    Tressette Tresette Tresette Online

    I hope this brought back some wonderful memories for you as it did for me. I can't wait until I play again with my wife and I especially can't wait until my sons approach me and ask me what games they can play with an Italian deck of cards.

    What is your favorite Italian card game?

    Briscola Video
    This video will demonstrate how to play the Italian card game briscola.


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