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Many people enjoy and revere gambling as a pastime. Casinos bear prominent positions in multi-million dollar film series. You can even find a slot machine at the corner cafe.

There are many online video slot machines, live dealer games, and even options to play virtual roulette. After seeing all this, it can set the mind to wondering about the origins of gambling.

Where did all this begin? Can we trace it back to some definite points in history? In this article, we’ll be having a detailed look at those very questions and informing you about the history and origins of gambling.

Gambling - the history and origins

The History of Gambling: Mentions in Literature

Historically, many different nations have taken up gambling. Indeed, the ancient Romans indulged, as did the ancient Greeks, and even the ancient Chinese.

There are references in an ancient Chinese book: ‘The Book of Songs’ to an activity called ‘drawing the wood.’ Historians believe that this indicates some sort of gambling activity.

In works by the Greek poet Sophocles, he discusses dice in detail. Subsequently, he claims that a hero of lore invented them during the siege of Troy. Even in the Christian Bible, the Gospels referred to soldiers drawing the lots for Jesus’ clothing. As you can see, gambling has had a large effect on humanity as a whole, dating back to some of the earliest points of civilization.

The History of Gambling: Points of Interest

In this section, we’ll be looking at the origins and histories of certain games. To be clear, these games have been fundamental parts of making gambling what it’s today.

Sports Wagering
Playing cards

The Origin of Casinos

the origin of casinos

The closest thing historically like casinos would be the gambling houses of Italy. These originated around the 17th century and were government-regulated. They aimed to provide controlled environments where gamblers could enjoy their play.

Italy called the group responsible for regulating the gambling houses the Ridotto. We could consider Ridotto the great uncle, several times removed, of our modern gambling commissions.

Subsequently, gambling houses began to spring up in many different places on the European mainland. With travellers to the Americas, came the gambling activity as well.

Much of the gambling activity in the US took place on steamboats in Mississippi. This is a rather strange coincidence since Mississippi is not today one of the states at the forefront of gambling advocacy.

Other Games

At this junction, we’ll glance at a few more popular modern games and their origins before looking at the roots of online gambling.
Slot Machines

Gambling as we know it: the origins

We’re quite confident that many of you would like to know how modern online gambling came about.

Microgaming developed the first online gambling software. Many of you are already familiar with this slot machine and gaming provider. After all, it has become one of the top providers in the world today.

Yet it was only in 1994 that doors began to open for online gambling as a whole. It was then that Antigua and Barbuda passed an act called the free trade and processing act.

The act granted licenses, thus opening the way for organizations to open online gambling institutions.

Despite many ups and downs, the act was the beginning of online gambling as we know it today. Later on, various areas of the world established gambling commissions and gaming authorities. Each separate commission helps to regulate the gambling trade in a specific region. Today, no online casino can legally operate without a license from one of these commissions or authorities.

Microgaming produces live dealer gambling games. Similarly, many companies provide video slots. Additionally, there are many other ways of gambling online.

Who would have thought all this started with some ancient civilizations betting on animal fights?