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[skaht, skat] /skɑt, skæt/
a card game for three players, using a pack of 32 playing cards, sevens through aces, the object being to fulfill any of various contracts, with scoring computed on strategy and on tricks won.
Origin of skat
1860-65; < German skat < Italian scarto, derivative of scartare to discard, equivalent to s- ex-1 + -cartare, derivative of carta card1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for skat
Historical Examples
  • "We expect you on Wednesday for skat," said Mrs. Freudenthal.

  • In their corner the skat players were sitting over their cards.

    Atlantis Gerhart Hauptmann
  • Even the skat players gave their attention for a few moments at a time.

    Atlantis Gerhart Hauptmann
  • With a double dummy, the French way, or Norwegian skat, if you like.

    Frenzied Fiction Stephen Leacock
  • He could not see it, but when he had poked among the bushes and cried ‘skat!’

    A Duet Arthur Conan Doyle
  • It is also a ready reference on all rulings and plays up to the present time, a condensed glossary on the game of skat.

    Games For All Occasions Mary E. Blain
  • Dirty playing cards were dug out and soon there was a real German skat game in full swing.

  • skat, skat, n. a game played with thirty-two cards as in Piquet, and said to have been invented in 1817 in Altenburg.

  • After a time the skat players, as usual, came bursting in, talking noisily and red of face.

    Atlantis Gerhart Hauptmann
  • Players of skat will readily recognize these terms and the value of the cards.

    Prophetical, Educational and Playing Cards Mrs. John King Van Rensselaer
British Dictionary definitions for skat


a three-handed card game using 32 cards, popular in German-speaking communities
Word Origin
C19: from German, from Italian scarto played cards, from scartare to discard, from s-ex-1 + carta, from Latin chartacard1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for skat

card game, 1864, from German Skat (by 1838), from earlier scart (said to have been a term used in the old card game called taroc, which was of Italian origin), from Italian scarto "cards laid aside," which is said to be a back-formation from scartare, from Latin ex- "off, away" + Late Latin carta (see card (n.1)). The German game is perhaps so called because it is played with a rump deck, or because two cards are laid aside at the start of the game, or because discarding is an important part of the game. Cf. French card game écarté, literally "cards removed."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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