How Did the Card Game Poker Get its Name and What Does it Mean in German?

A card game called poque was introduced to America by French gamblers in New Orleans.

Both the name and the game came from the German word pochspiel, which literally means “boast game,” while the derivative pochen means “to knock.”

This knock on the table is still part of the many forms of poker and indicates that a player is passing on a bet.

In a Southern drawl, poque was “pok-uh,” which, when spread to the rest of the country, became “poker.”