Four-handed pinochle derives from a card game that originated in France. Originally called bezique, modern pinochle was introduced to America by European immigrants prior to World War I.
A pinochle deck differs from a standard 52 deck of playing cards. There are no cards numbered 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 or 8 in the deck. In pinochle, each suit of diamonds, spades, hearts and clubs has double the number of 9, 10, Jack, Queen, King and Ace cards.
Pinochle can be played with two to four people, with one person acting as dealer. When four people play, the game is known as “partnership auction pinochle.”