The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game that involves betting. The game has a long history and a wide variety of rules. Some of these rules affect the probability that a player will get the cards he or she needs for a good hand.

The game is played by a number of people sitting around a table. Each player places an initial amount of money into the pot before the cards are dealt. This is called the ante. The players may also choose to raise their bets. When a player raises his or her bet, other players may call that bet. Players may also fold, meaning that they give up their right to compete for the pot.

During the early history of poker, several different families of card games evolved. The first of these was a card game known as Primero, which developed into three-card brag (English and American, 17th – 18th centuries), and later into the game of poker as we know it.

Each round of poker begins with a player to the left of the button (official name) posting a small blind and a big blind. These are forced bets that give players something to chase and help to prevent players from folding before the flop.

Then, 3 cards are dealt face-up (revealed to all players) in the center of the table. These are the flop cards. Players then use these and their own private 2 cards to make a 5-card poker hand.