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The Interesting History of Roulette

A casino game with a lot of history and a bright future in online gambling.

Across all casino games, roulette arguably has the most interesting history. Since it is not played with cards or dice, it is something different and while it is difficult to know exactly when the game started, there are reports indicating that the gambling wheel is an ancient game.

The modern version which is now popular across the world was created in the 18th century, in France. However, Blaise Pascal promoted a primitive form of the game one century earlier as he was trying to research perpetual motion and so created a machine which would use a spinning wheel and a ball in order to highlight this. Roulette is French for “little wheel”.

When the game was invented, it used elements from several popular games. One of which was Hoka, an Italian game which uses a table with 40 holes. The player would throw a ball on the table and it will drop in one of the marked holes, determining the winner of the bet. Three of the holes were marked with a zero and these meant a win for the house. Roulette was also influenced by the English game of E – O. This stands for Even and Odd and it was played on a round table which had 42 slots. 20 of them were even, 20 or odd and 2 where for the house. The combination of these two games helped create the popular casino game we know today as roulette.

Rise to popularity

While the game was considered an entertainment option for nobles in Europe, it would find its commercial use in the 1840s as two German brothers promoted a slightly different version of roulette across the country in gambling dens. Their variant, which would later become known as European roulette, had room for a green zero in order to add a house edge for them to pay for their services. Towards the end of the century however, gambling became illegal in Germany and the two brothers left the country and started opening gaming dens across Europe.

Roulette made its way to American casinos in the 1800s and it quickly became popular, but not before it was added another green pocket for 00 to increase the house edge.

Now, the game is easily played on the internet with realistic graphics and animations making it look like the real thing.