pi·​noch·​le ˈpē-ˌnə-kəl How to pronounce pinochle (audio)
: a card game played with a 48-card pack containing two each of A, K, Q, J, 10, 9 in each suit with the object to score points by melding certain combinations of cards or by winning tricks that contain scoring cards
also : the meld of queen of spades and jack of diamonds scoring 40 points in this game

Examples of pinochle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The men played lots of cards – pinochle. Terry Pluto, cleveland, 25 Dec. 2022 Bingo returns July 9 (every second and fourth Friday) while every Monday there’s bridge and pinochle, as well as Mexican train dominoes. John Benson, cleveland, 1 July 2021 The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out, the worms play pinochle on your snout, to be sure, but which worms? Veronique Greenwood, Discover Magazine, 1 Aug. 2012 But there are many things that bring her joy: a tight network of friends, some kept since her days at Howard, others made recently over fiercely competitive rounds of the card game pinochle. Daniel Wu, Washington Post, 8 Dec. 2022 The two men, both pinochle players, became close friends. Frederick N. Rasmussen,, 10 Sep. 2021 There’s bridge, pinochle, go fish, and even solitaire. Chris Hachey, BGR, 28 Apr. 2021 There were Helen and Bill, my parents' regular pinochle opponents; Maurice and Thelma, who commuted to college and later taught school with my mother; and Mary, whose husband died before her daughter, my best friend Kathy, was born. Debra Hale-Shelton, Arkansas Online, 16 Aug. 2020 The main reason was because my father’s friend Joe worked for Isaac Gellis and, occasionally, on Tuesday nights when my dad and his cronies had their weekly pinochle game, Joe would show up with a free salami for each of them. Ronnie Fein,, 13 Nov. 2019 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pinochle.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


modification of German dialect Binokel, a game resembling bezique, from French dialect binocle

First Known Use

1864, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of pinochle was in 1864

Dictionary Entries Near pinochle

Cite this Entry

“Pinochle.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


pi·​noch·​le ˈpē-ˌnək-əl How to pronounce pinochle (audio)
: a card game played with two cards of each suit with 9 the lowest card

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