Glossary

In this section you can find some of the most common terms used in the game of Mahjong. Chinese Mahjong game terms and glossary
  • Bamboos – One of the three suits, sometimes bams or sticks.
  • Bonus Tiles – Flower or Season tile.
  • Characters – One of the three suits, sometimes called cracks.
  • Chicken Hand – A hand without points.
  • China Jade – A hand composed entirely of green tiles.
  • Chow – Three tiles of the same suit in sequence or knitted.
  • Circles – One of the three suits, sometimes called coins or dots.
  • Concealed – A tile or tiles drawn from the wall and not exposed.
  • Discard – A rejected tile which may be claimed by another player.
  • Dispersed Kong – A hand with four identical suit tiles other than in a kong.
  • Exposed – A face-up tile, part of a set or a discard.
  • Family Hand – A hand composed or the three suits, dragons and winds.
  • Flower Tile – Bonus Tile.
  • Going Mahjong – Declaring a hand worth eight points or more.
  • Going Out – Going Mahjong.
  • Head – The pair of tiles necessary in most hand to go out.
  • Honours – Dragon and wind tiles.
  • Knitted Tiles – Tiles 1-4-7, 2-5-8 and 3-6-9 in different suits.
  • Kong – Set of four identical tiles.
  • Major Tiles – Honours and terminals.
  • Matchin Chows – Two matching chows in different suits.
  • Meld – A set.
  • Nine Gates – A single suit hand in which any tile of the same suit completes the hand.
  • Progressive Chows – Chows stepped up one or two digits.
  • Progressive Pungs – Pungs stepped up one digit.
  • Pung – Set of three identical tiles.
  • Reversible Tiles – Tiles that have the same appearance when inverted.
  • Self-drawn – A tile drawn from the wall.
  • Sequence – Set of suit tiles in numerical order.
  • Set – Chow, pung or kong.
  • Simples – Suit tiles other than terminals.
  • Stepped – Chows separated by one or two numbers.
  • Terminals – Tiles one and nine of the three suits.
  • Thirteen Orphans – A hand composed of one each of every major tile, one tile paired.
  • Twin Chows – Two identical chows in the same suit.
  • Void Suit – A hand lacking tiles of one suit.
  • Wall – Tiles assembled face down at the start of the game.
  • Wind, Own – Wind corresponding to the player’s seat.
  • Wind, Prevailing – The wind of the round.
  • Wind, Seat – Wind corresponding to the player’s seat.