Seven Card Stud: A Classic Poker Game

Seven Card Stud, also known as Down the River, or Seven Toed Pete is a classic form of poker.

As the name itself suggests, Seven Card Stud is a poker game in which each player is dealt seven cards (four faces down, three faces up). 

Each player then uses the best five-card combination from their seven cards to form the poker hand. 

After the initial deal, a round of betting ensues. 

Then, each player is dealt one card at a time, followed by another round of betting, until all seven cards have been dealt. 

The player with the best five-card combination wins the pot.

Let’s understand the game in-depth, we’ll be covering the gameplay of seven-card poker as well as the rules for play in seven-card stud poker, and end with a few questions that you might have on the game.

Let’s go…

About The GamePlay Of Seven Card Stud Poker

Seven Card Stud is a popular variant of poker that is played with seven cards. In the game, each player is dealt seven cards, three faces down, and four faces up. 

The object of The Game Of Seven-Card Stud Poker: The goal of the game of Seven-Card Stud is to make the best five-card poker hand possible with the seven cards dealt. 

In Seven Card Stud, players can bet and raise on each betting round, starting with the player with the highest face-up card showing. 

After the first betting round, the player with the highest face-up card showing must put in a “bring-in” bet. The bring-in bet is usually equal to half the minimum bet and sets the minimum bet for the rest of the round. 

In Seven Card Stud, the first three cards are dealt face down, and the next four cards are dealt face up. 

After the fourth card is dealt, there is a second betting round. During this round, players can either call, raise, or fold. After the second betting round, the fifth card is dealt face-up, followed by a third betting round. The sixth card is dealt face-up, followed by a fourth betting round. 

The final seventh card is dealt face down, followed by a fifth and final betting round. After the final betting round, the player with the highest five-card poker hand wins the pot.

How did this Poker variant get the name Seven-Card Stud?

The name Seven-Card Stud is believed to have originated in the American West, where the game was played by cowboys and other frontiersmen. 

The game is believed to have been derived from the English game of Brag, which is similar to modern-day Three Card Poker. In this game, players are dealt seven cards and must make the best five-card poker hand from the seven cards. 

This is why the game is often referred to as Seven-Card Stud.

Rules For Play In Seven-Card Stud

There are certain rules as to how the game proceeds and is played along the line in Seven-Card Stud.

The Rules of the Game Of Seven-Card Stud are as follows.

  1. Each player is dealt two cards, face down. 
  1. After all, players have received their two cards, the first round of betting begins. 
  1. The first three rounds of betting are known as “Third Street”, “Fourth Street”, and “Fifth Street”. 
  1. During each of these rounds, each player is dealt one more card face-up. 
  1. After Fifth Street, the final round of betting takes place, known as “Sixth Street”. 
  1. After Sixth Street, the last card is dealt face down to each player, known as “Seventh Street”. 
  1. After Seventh Street, the last round of betting takes place and the player with the best five-card poker hand wins the pot.

A few Questionnaires To Clear Your Queries on Seven-Card Stud Poker

Q. What Is the ranking of an Ace in Seven Card Stud? What is the order of the cards ranking high to low?

  • In seven-card stud, the highest ranking card is the Ace. The Ace can be used as either a high card or a low card depending on the situation. 

As a high card, it is the highest card in the deck, higher than the King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, and 2. As a low card, it is the lowest card in the deck, lower than the 2.

Q. Who starts the game in Seven-Card Stud Poker?

  • In Seven Card Stud, the player with the lowest ranking upcard (the card that is dealt face-up) must make a forced bet, called the bring-in, meaning in seven card stud, the player with the lowest exposed card is typically the first to act. 

This is typically half the amount of the lower betting limit. The player with the highest ranking upcard then has the option to call the bring-in, complete the bet, or raise it. Play then moves clockwise around the table.

Q. What is the probability of pulling off a seven-card straight?

  • The probability of getting a seven card straight in Seven Card Stud is approximately 0.0016 or 0.16%.

Q. What is a Burn card? How many burn cards are there in a seven-card stud?

  • In Seven Card Stud, a Burn card is a card that is discarded and not used in the game. It is typically the first card dealt to each player and is placed face down in the discard pile. 

The purpose of the burn card is to prevent cheating and to add an element of randomness to the game. There are four burn cards in a seven-card stud game.

Q. What is The Street Car Seven-Card Stud?

  • Seven Card Stud in the Street Car is a variation of the popular poker game Seven Card Stud. The game is usually played on a bus or subway car, with players taking turns dealing with the cards and betting on the strength of their hands. 

The game is usually played with two to five players and the goal is to make the best five-card hand from the seven dealt cards.

Q. Is Seven Card Stud Poker a limit-based game?

  • No, Seven Card Stud Poker is not a limit-based game. It is a classic poker variant that is usually played with no-limit betting.

Q. What is a Flush in the game of Seven-Card Stud Poker?

  • In seven card stud, a flush is a hand that consists of five cards of the same suit. The highest-ranking flush is the one with the highest-ranking card. 

For example, a flush with the Ace of Hearts, King of Hearts, Queen of Hearts, Jack of Hearts, and 10 of Hearts would beat a flush with the Ace of Spades, King of Spades, Queen of Spades, Jack of Spades, and 10 of Spades.


Seven-card stud poker is a classic poker game that can be enjoyed by both experienced and novice players alike. 

Seven-Card Poker is a great game to learn and can provide hours of fun and entertainment. 

Just like other forms of poker card games, this game is played by two to eight players, each receiving seven cards to form the best five-card poker hand. The player with the best hand at the end of the game wins the pot. 

Seven-card stud poker is an exciting game that can provide hours of entertainment.

sarah manning
Sarah Manning

Sarah Manning, a luminary in professional poker, boasts a decorated career spanning over a decade. Renowned for her strategic acumen and numerous championship titles, Sarah not only dominates the tables but also mentors aspiring players. Her mentorship extends beyond coaching, delving into strategic analyses shared in poker publications. Sarah's passion lies in unlocking the intricacies of the game, dissecting its dynamics, and shaping the next generation of poker enthusiasts.

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