The History of Gambling


The precise origin of gambling is unknown, but it seems to have existed in some form for nearly as long as people have been around. Primitive protodice, carved knuckle bones and even a few casino games can be found in ancient archaeological digs, but the casino as we know it didn’t develop until the 16th century. At that point, European aristocrats often held social occasions in private gambling houses called ridotti [Source: Schwartz]. The closure of many public casinos pushed gambling into these smaller clubs and the word ‘casino’ was born.

Modern casino buildings are designed to maximize revenue, and security is one of the main concerns. Observant security officers patrol the floor of each casino, looking for blatant cheating like palming or marking cards and dice. In addition, each game has a mathematical expectancy of winning for the casino, so it’s very rare that a patron wins more than they lose on any given day. This is the reason why it’s important to play within your bankroll.

Casinos rely on players to make them money, but many gamblers are not the most responsible. Something about the casino experience encourages cheating and theft, especially when large sums are involved. That’s why casinos invest so much time, energy and money into security.