Thieves of Egypt Solitaire

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Thieves of Egypt is a variant of Forty Thieves with these differences:

  • The cards are layed out differently
  • Columns are built down in Alternating Color
  • Any number of built cards may be moved
  • Only Kings may fill empty Columns
  • One Redeal is allowed

Thieves of Egypt Rules


Move all cards to the eight Foundation piles, starting from the Aces and continuing up to the Kings in EACH suit.

The Deal

Using two decks, 55 cards are dealt face up to the ten Columns with each column receiving a different number of cards from 1 to 10. The 10 Columns are dealt from left to right: 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 10, 8, 6, 4, and 2 cards respectively. The remaining cards form the Stock.


Starting with an Ace and continuing up to the Kings, each Foundation is built UP and in the SAME SUIT.


Columns are built DOWN and in ALTERNATING COLOR. Any number of properly sequenced cards may be moved to another Column if the build condition is met.

For example, within the columns, a red 9, black 8, and red 7 in sequence without any other cards covering them may be moved to an exposed black 10 in another Column.

Sequences may be split. The exposed card of each Column is always available to move to a Foundation pile or another Column.

Empty Columns may only be filled with Kings or properly sequenced cards headed by a King.

Stock and Discard Pile

Cards from the Stock are flipped one at a time to the Discard Pile. The top card of the Discard Pile may be played to a Column or to a Foundation.

One redeal is allowed.

Thieves of Egypt Strategy

Clearing columns is important. Try to get all Kings into play and placed at the top of a Column. It is also important to move Kings that are covering other low-ranked cards into their own Columns.

As early as possible, try to get one Foundation started in each suit.

Try to not build on Columns when the variety of ranks within the Column is great. For example, if a Column has a few low cards buried, try not to place high-ranked cards onto it that cannot be easily moved around.

Remember that you may go through the Stock twice. It may be advantageous sometimes to not always play certain cards from the Stock on the first pass.

Game Notes's version of Thieves of Egypt supports a "Supermove" where you may move more than one card at a time as long as the move would have been possible had it been done by shuffling around single cards also.