Rules for Quadrille

Family: Quadrille
Categories: Simple, Small, Pretty
Also Known As: Captive Queens, The Queen's Lace Handkerchief

Some solitaires are more interesting for the pretty patterns they make on the table than for their intellectual challenge. Many such games require large, elaborate layouts, but here’s a charmingly small and simple one.


Four piles are in the center of the layout, overlapped in a diamond pattern. Around them are eight more piles in a circle. (When you are using real cards, you can lay them out all pointing away from the center, which is the prettiest way to view them.) To one side there is a discard pile. All these piles start out empty, with the full deck in your hand.


To play, deal one card at a time from the deck into the discard pile. The top card of the discard pile can be moved to any tableau or foundation pile according to these rules:

The four center piles each will hold one queen and nothing else. The four piles at the compass points (North, South, East, and West) must each have a five played onto them first; thereafter they build down, following suit, with the King played onto the Ace at the end. The remaining piles (at the Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, and Southwest) must each have a six played onto them first; thereafter they build up, following suit, to the Jack.


Deal one card at a time onto the discard pile by clicking the deck. You may redeal twice, for a total of three times through the deck: when the deck is empty, pick up the entire discard pile and turn it face down to form a new hand.


The goal is to empty the hand and discard pile into the other piles. If you succeed, you’ll be rewarded with the Quadrille, a pretty and dance-like arrangement of the twelve court cards.


There’s no strategy to this game. Just pay attention as you deal, and don’t miss any moves. You can win more than half of your games if you make no mistakes.

Copyright 2002-2004 by Semicolon Software. All international rights reserved.