Roulette History in Details
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Glorious game of Roulette has not always been the same. It has passed a long way from a primitive pastime to the noble gambling game of today. Modern roulette is always associated with luxury and subtle lights of chic casinos, but have you ever wondered how it all started? Let us study the full evolution of the roulette game from ancient times!
Roulette History: The First Step
People used to spin wheels for luck from the time they started using them. For instance, gambling wheels could be found in the Greco-Roman period! Roman soldiers took a light chariot wheel to determine a winner. There were 10 winning spaces on the ground and an arrow, which pointed to one of these areas. Ancient Greeks are known to use a shield for the same purpose, but as you can see the idea of the game has always been the same – the wheel determined the lucky guy!
Roulette wheel game was very popular in medieval Europe. Italian “Hoca” game was a real plague of the 17th century. Even Cardinal Mazarin, the chief minister of France, could not resist the temptation and opened casinos with Hoca “to collect money for the Treasury”. There was a circular table with 40 cups on which a ball was rolled. Three cups were marked as zeros and were house cups. As you see, the house had 7.5% edge over the players!
England of that time enjoyed the “E-O” game – a circular table with 40 sections marked with “E” (Even) or “O” (Odd). There were also two bar spaces that won all bets for the casino. Even today some people enjoy playing this tough game!
European roulette started in 1655 when French scientist Blaise Pascal created it as a perpetual motion machine. He failed to created eternal motion but became an unwilling inventor of today’s mania! The game was installed in several monasteries but soon it reached higher society. In 1843 chic casinos appeared in Hamburg, German, which had the single-zero roulette game (the roulette with only one “0” slot). In the 1860s gambling games were banned in Germany and Roulette moved to Monte Carlo! Roulette of that time is associated with the names of Francois and Luis Blanc – those fellows were believed to trade their souls in exchange for the secret of roulette. There is a legend that they added all the numbers on the roulette wheel together and received the number of the beast…
The late 1800’s brought Roulette to America where it became incredibly popular. Most casinos in the United States preferred double-zero version of the French roulette game because it was more beneficial for casino owners. Since those days we can speak of single-zero “European roulette” and double-zero American roulette.