# 19 hand

## impossible scores

My brother and I were talking about impossible hands to get. We have always known that 19 is an impossible hand to get. It has even been passed down in our family that if you get a 0 when counting a hand that you got a 19. But we were trying to figure out if a 25, 26, or 27 was possible. Can any one clear this up for us and if you can get them, how?

• The origins of cribbage are uncertain, but the game dates back almost five hundred years.

• The rules of cribbage are simple to learn, but can take a lifetime to master!

• The highest possible hand in cribbage is 29, the perfect cribbage hand.

• There are several 'impossible totals' - point counts which cannot be made with any hand. The lowest such total is 19 - hence the expression 'a nineteen hand', or 'I have nineteen', almost universally (perhaps sarcastically) used to describe a zero-point hand.

• Cribbage has given the English language a number of expressions which it is hard to imagine doing without, including "level pegging", "what a turn-up/a turn-up for the books", "streets ahead", and "pegged out".

• The fact that the crib alternates with the deal means that on average, the lead should also change hands with each deal - which means it ain't over till it's over!

• The biggest possible improvement in your score from the cut is 20 points, when you hold 4-4-6-6 and cut a 5.

• The first dealer in a game wins 55% to 60% of the time.