Definition of 8 ball

Sometimes called spots and stripes, stripes and solids or, more rarely, bigs and littles or highs and lows.
All fifteen numbered balls are used in a conventional triangle rack.
Each player is assigned either the solid balls (1-7) or the striped balls (9-15). The object is to pocket all of your assigned balls and then pocket the 8-ball.

24 Random Essential Billiards Terms

The placement of the balls, especially the cue ball, relative to the next planned shot. Also known as shape.
A small clamping tip tool used to firmly hold and apply pressure to a replacement cue tip until the glue holding the tip to the ferrule has fully dried.
A type of safety shot in the middle of a safety exchange that is not intended to put the opponent in a difficult situation regarding their next safety, but rather played so as to not leave an easy pot on. A typical example in snooker, which sees the most shots of this kind, is a slow roll-up into the pack.
The triangular device, generally plastic, used to group the balls in a pyramid form prior to the beginning of a game.
A defensive action taken when a player either has no "makeable" or "high percentage" shot or chooses to leave his opponent in a difficult situation. It is a legal shot and is not considered to be dirty pool. A safety must still conform with the rule concerning hitting the correct ball first and striking a rail afterwards. If a correct ball is accidentally pocketed while playing safe, the shooter must continue to shoot.
Describes a ball rolling along a rail in contact or near contact with it, or which makes multiple successive contacts with the rail.
This is to direct the cue ball by barely contacting an object ball.
Any system for banking or kicking balls multiple rails which uses table diamonds as aiming references.
To apply chalk to the tip of your cue before a shot.
Same as stripes, in New Zealand. Compare yellows, high, big ones; contrast unders.
A specific ball number followed by "out" refers to a handicap in nine-ball or other rotation games where the "spot" is all balls from that designated number to the money ball. To illustrate, the 6-out in a nine-ball game would allow the player getting weight to win by legally pocketing the 6, 7, 8 or 9 balls.
Short for run out, especially as a noun: "That was a nice out."
A short, jabbed draw stroke usually employed so as to not commit a foul (i.e. due to following through to a double hit) when the cue ball is very near to the target object ball.
A foul where the rules are blatantly, intentionally violated, with a stiffer penalty (e.g., loss of game) than normal.
This is a shot that attempts to move a number of balls onto your side of the table in a kind of herding attempt.
To determine the order of play, players (representing only themselves, or teams) each simultaneously shoot a ball from the kitchen (or in British games, from the baulk line) to the end rail and back toward the bottom rail. Whichever shooter's ball comes to rest closest to the bottom rail gets to choose who breaks the rack. It is permissible but not required for the lagged ball to touch or rebound from the bottom rail, but not to touch the side rails. Lagging is usually a two-party activity, though there are games such as cutthroat in which three players might lag. In the case of a tie, the tying shooters re-lag. The lag is most often used in tournament play or other competitions. In hard-break games like nine-ball and eight-ball the winner of the lag would normally take the break, while in soft-break games like straight pool would likely require the loser of the lag to break, since breaking would be a disadvantage.
This is the imaginary line that a ball would need to follow in order for it to result in an effective bank shot.
Three equally spaced diamonds are normally between each pocket on a pool table. On a carom table, the pockets themselves are replaced by additional diamonds. Diamonds get their name from the shape of the markings traditionally used; though many today are round, square, etc., these rail markings are still referred to as "diamonds".
Also split shot. In pool, a type of shot in which two object balls are initially contacted by the cue ball simultaneously or so close to simultaneously as for the difference to be indistinguishable to the eye. In most sets of rules it is a foul if the split is one in which one of the object balls is a (or the only) legal target (ball-on) and the other is not; however, such a split is commonly considered a legal shot in informal bar pool in many areas if it is called as a split and does appear to strike the balls simultaneously).
The way in which a player holds the butt end of the cue stick.
The wrap of the cuestick where the hand is placed, also known as the "grip area."
The upper portion of a cue which slides on a player's bridge hand and upon which the tip of the cue is mounted at its terminus. It also applies to the main, unsegmented body of a mechanical bridge.
Chiefly British: Same as duck, and stemming from the same obvious etymology.
When the object ball lies behind another ball which makes it impossible to be struck by the cue with a direct hit.
This is a shot that is meant to remove one of your opponent's balls that lies near their pocket in the game of one pocket.
A multi-game division of a match, as used in some league and tournament formats. For example, in a match between 2 teams of 5 players each, a 25-game match might be divided into 5 rounds of 5 games each, in which the roster of one team moves one line down at the beginning of each round, such that by the end of the match every player on team A has played every player on team B in round robin fashion.
A level of competition elimination in a tournament, such as the quarterfinal round, semifinal round and final round.