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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Faro \Far"o\, n. [Said to be so called because the Egyptian king Pharaoh was formerly represented upon one of the cards.] A gambling game at cards, in which all the other players play against the dealer or banker, staking their money upon the order in which the cards will lie and be dealt from the pack.

Faro bank, the capital which the proprietor of a faro table ventures in the game; also, the place where a game of faro is played.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

18th century gambling game with cards, 1726, sometimes said to be altered from pharaoh, perhaps his image was on one of the cards, but early descriptions of the game give no indication of this and it seems to have been played with a standard deck.


n. A banking game at cards, in which all the other players play against the dealer or banker, who draws from a dealing box.


n. a card game in which players bet against the dealer on the cards he will draw from a dealing box

Faro (card game)

Faro, Pharaoh, or Farobank is a late 17th-century French gambling card game. It is descended from basset, and belongs to the lansquenet and Monte Bank family of games due to the use of a banker and several players. Winning or losing occurs when cards turned up by the banker match those already exposed.

It is not a direct relative of poker, but faro was often just as popular, due to its fast action, easy-to-learn rules, and better odds than most games of chance. The game of faro is played with only one deck of cards and admits any number of players.


Fårö is a Baltic Sea island just off north of the island of Gotland, itself off mainland Sweden's southeastern coast. It is the second-largest island in the province and it is a popular summer resort. It has its own dialect (Faroymal, a dialect of Gutnish), claimed to be the oldest language in Sweden. Formerly a socken which includes the Gotska Sandön island, on 1January 2016, it was reconstituted into the administrative area Fårö District.


Faro may refer to:

Faro (mythology)

In Mande mythology, Faro purified the earth by sacrificing himself to atone for his twin Pemba's sin.

Faro (electoral district)

Faro was an electoral district that returned a member (known as an MLA) to the Legislative Assembly of the Yukon Territory in Canada between 1978 and 2002.

Faro (department)

Faro is a department of North Province in Cameroon. The department covers an area of 11,785 km² and as of 2001 had a total population of 81,472.The capital of the department lies at Poli.

Usage examples of "faro".

Valentine concentrated on thoughts of ugly old chits and losing at faro.

Desarmoises, my party at Choisi, my trust in Costa, my union with the Renaud, and worse than all, my folly in letting myself play at faro at a place where the knavery of the gamesters is renowned all over Europe, followed one another in fatal succession.

I took a job dealing faro when I hit Germiston, a quaint little village a couple of miles east of Johannesburg.

But the afternoon was dull and the faro dealer was idly shuffling a double stack of chips when Rimrock brushed in through the door.

It was the hand of a Chinaman, those most passionate of faro players, and at such times, seeing it follow his luck, the face of Rimrock lightened up with the semblance of a smile.

With fifty cents to eat on, and one more faro game behind him, Rimrock stood thoughtfully on the corner and asked the old question: What next?

Carpenter knew well that Wheels Bryant would be after bigger game than the shekels that clanked across the roulette board and the faro tables.

We were not known to anyone, and were rambling through the apartments, when we arrived before a large table at which the princebishop was holding a faro bank.

I had placed my money in the hands of a certain Maroli, a major in the army and a gamester by profession, who held the faro bank at the coffee-house.

I immediately offered to procure a good company at my expense, if the boxes were at once subscribed for, and the monopoly of the faro bank granted to me.

I called again in the evening, and, after she had excused herself for not having been at home in the morning, the faro bank began, and I lost all my money, still having the countess for my partner.

Manzoni, who told me that she was at the faro table, losing her money.

Gondoin, a colonel in the service of the Duke of Modena, because he held a faro bank at his house.

After supper, which did not last very long, cards were produced, and one of the officers held a bank at faro.

I felt myself safe as far as love was concerned, but I had reason to dread fortune, always the friend of those who keep a bank at faro, especially as I had already lost.