Mah Jong is a Chinese tiles game which is similar to the card game
Rummy... but much more exciting and exotic.
I've been playing Mah Jong since I was a child - on account of my maternal-grandparents
returning from Malaya in the 1950s with a set. Since marrying in 1999
I have introduced Jane to the game. I love the game... and Jane!
At first glance a Mah Jong set may look quite bewildering, but with
a little familarisation and a couple of games it quickly begins to make
First of all there are three suits (Dots, Bamboos and Characters).
These are numbered 1 to 9, and there are four of each tile, so four
ones, four twos, four threes ... four nines. So each suit consists of
thirty-six (36) tiles.
Ones and nines - also known as terminals - are considered the most
valuable tiles in these suits.
Besides the 3 suits, there are 4 Winds and 3 Dragons. These
are collectively known as Honours tiles. Once again there are four of
each tile, giving a total of 16 Wind tiles and 12 Dragon tiles.
An optional addition to the game is the use of Seasons and Flowers.