Ace

(1 syl.).

The unit of cards or dice, from as>, the Latin unit of weight. (Italian, asso; French and Spanish, as.)

Within an ace.

Within a shave. An ace is the lowest numeral, and he who wins within an ace, wins within a single mark. (See Ambes-As.)

To bate an ace

is to make an abatement, or to give a competitor some start or other advantage, in order to render the combatants more equal. It said that the expression originated in the reign of Henry VIII, when one of the courtiers named Bolton, in order to flatter the king, used to say at cards, “Your Majesty must bate me an ace, or I shall have no chance at all.” Taylor, the water poet (1580–1654), speaking of certain women, says—

Though bad they be, they will not bate an ace
To be cald Prudence, Temprance, Faith, and Grace.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

More on Ace from Fact Monster:

  • ACE inhibitor - ACE inhibitor ACE inhibitor or angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor, drug used to reduce ...
  • Kiss - Kiss rock group They have been dismissed by critics, who have almost universally panned them, but ...
  • écarté - écarté écarté , card game similar to euchre, played by two persons. The ...
  • Rollie Fingers - Rollie Fingers Born: Aug. 25, 1946 Baseball RHP relief ace with 341 career saves; won AL MVP and Cy ...
  • pinochle - pinochle pinochle , card game, probably derived from bezique, that was developed in the United ...

Related Content