The Dead Man’s Hand is one of the most recognized hands in poker. But what is it, exactly? And what do you need to know about it if you want to play this hand successfully? In this article, we will look at what makes the dead man’s hand so special and how to play it in poker. Read on for all the details!
The Dead Man’s Hand is known today as a “cursed” poker hand made up of two black aces, two black eights, and an unknown fifth card. According to legend, it was the hand that James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok held when he was shot dead in August 1876 by Jack “Crooked Nose” McCall.
The first reference to Dead Man’s Hand was in 1886, a year before Wild Bill’s death, and it was then said to be a full house of three jacks and pair tens. Years later, the Encyclopedia of Superstitions, Folklore, and the Occult Sciences of the World (1903) mentions the dead man’s hand as an unlucky hand of jacks and sevens. In 1907, it was claimed that British author Edmond Hoyle referred to it as pairs of jacks and eights. Surprisingly, attribution of the dead man’s hand to Hickok didn’t happen until Frank Wilstach’s Wild Bill Hickok: The Prince of Pistoleers (1926), where he finally defined the Dead Man’s Hand in poker jargon as a pair of aces and a pair of eights.
To this day, even though Hickok was shot and killed, there is no definitive proof that he was holding any particular cards at the time of his death. But that’s not stopping poker players from using the Dead Man’s Hand as a way to add a bit of excitement (and superstition) to their games!
- Along Came A Spider (novel by James Patterson)
The secondary antagonist character tells the story of her father winning his gun with a hand of aces and eights, and she also used “Aces&Eights” as her password on her computer.
- Criminal Minds (tv series, “The Lightning” episode)
Aaron Hotchner plays poker with an inmate on death row to reveal where he hid another victim. Hotch asserts to have two aces and two eights. The inmate tells his hand to be a straight: 7, 8, 9, 10, and jack. Hotch then showed another ace, thereby beating the inmate.
- Ace Of Spades (song by Motörhead)
Read ’em and weep, the dead man’s hand again
I see it in your eyes, take one look and die
3. How do you successfully play the Dead Man’s Hand cards, and what are the best strategies to use when playing them?
Although there is no sure-fire way to win when playing the Dead Man’s Hand, specific techniques can help you increase your chances of success. If you want to play Dead Man’s Hand successfully in poker, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.
- Don’t let the “curse” get into your hand; play it like any other hand.
- It is crucial to remember that the aces and eights are high cards, so you should try to build a strong hand around them.
- You should be aggressive in your betting, as this will force your opponents to fold if they don’t have a strong hand.
- Finally, don’t be afraid to bluff, as this can make your opponent think twice about calling your bet.
Just like any other hand, there are some risks with playing the Dead Man’s Hand. It’s certainly not the best or worst hand you can handle in poker. However, if you use the skills and knowledge you’ve learned so far and the strategies outlined above, you can minimize these risks and increase your chances of success with this infamous hand. Increase your skill level by practicing in free poker games on sites like GGPoker, the world’s largest poker room.
The Dead Man’s Hand is one of history’s most famous poker hands. While it may seem like a good hand, other combinations can beat it, but the vital thing to do is prepare for whichever hand you get. Sign-up at GGPoker today to try out your skills and be more prepared to deal with any poker hand. With plenty of tournaments and games for you to choose from, you can surely put your poker skills to the test!