The Genesis and Evolution of Playing Cards: Where Did the Cards Come From?

So where did playing cards come from?

Most of us had our first cards come from Mom and Dad. As toddlers, a used deck kept us busy and out of their hair. Soon we graduated to Go Fish and War, (with cards that had torn corners, daubs of chocolate, and a little peanut butter.) Then as teens we went on to penny poker. We learned how to play and we played to win. As adults we’re still playing cards, be it sociable games with our friends or a little Blackjack, Poker, or Baccarat at the casino.

Earliest History of Playing Cards

The earliest known history of where cards came from dates back to ancient China, where it is believed that they were invented during the 9th century. Some historians suggest that the first cards may have been actual currencies that were used for games of chance. The money cards had four suits: coins, strings of coins, myriads, and tens of myriads. A myriad is a group, lot, or heap of currency. (One myriad equals 10,000 units.) By the 11th century the popularity of the playing card spread to the entire Asian continent.

European Design Changes

Cards first appeared in Europe around 1377. By this time a single deck contained 52 cards comprised of four suits: polo sticks, coins, swords, and cups. Each suit contained ten spot cards. The value of each card was determined by the number of suit symbols on each card. Each suit also had three court cards named; King, Deputy King, and Under Deputy King.

In 15th century Europe the suits of the cards varied from country to country until France invented the four suits which are now the most common: spades, hearts, diamonds, and clubs. It is widely believed that each of the four suits stood for one part of society. Spades represent the nobility of the knights, (the pointed tip signifies a spear.) Hearts stood for the clergy, Diamonds for merchants, and Clubs for peasants. The Europeans also changed the court card designs to represent European royalty: King, Queen, and Knave, who is the son of the King and Queen, or the Prince. Today the Knave is known as the Jack.

Playing Cards in America

Cards first came to America with Columbus in 1492. When the Puritans colonized Massachusetts Bay in the 1600’s’ they outlawed the possession of cards because of their hostility towards games of chance. Nevertheless, card playing prevailed in other colonies and was considered a suitable form of entertainment. As the country expanded, taverns, road houses, and Mississippi riverboats flourished with card playing gamblers and sharks. Pioneers brought their cards with them to California during the gold rush.

America stayed with the European design; however, after the civil war the American card companies added two Jokers to each deck to promote a popular trump card game called Euchre, though the jokers never gained widespread popularity. Today very few card games use the joker. Among them are Canasta, Crazy Eights, and the casino game of Pai Gow Poker, Where the joker is a wild card.

Presently there are over nine hundred card games that use the standard 15th century French deck. Almost every household in the developed world has at least one deck of cards, but a typical casino may use up to twenty-five thousand decks in one month. Because skill is required for casino card games, our interest in them will not change anytime soon.

Why Gamblers Are Tempted to Risk More While Gambling

Introduction

Despite being on the losing spree, the people might gamble more with the hope that they will win the next game. Even the sweet memories of the past victories force the people to play more. A recent study has revealed this trend. The authors of this study have published the outcome of this study in the Journal of Experimental Psychology. In this article, we would be looking at the interesting findings brought out by this interesting study.

Recent Study

The study found that people chose to go in for further plays when the scientists reminded or primed them of past winning outcomes. It has found that people were over 15% more likely to play more by selecting the risky option. The research team from the University for Warwick in Britain believe that memories of the people play a crucial role in making certain decisions. When the team interviewed people who are in the habit of gambling, they found that subtle cues about the past victories play a significant role in propelling them forward to gamble more. This is clearer in people who go for gambling in local casinos. The gamblers even place millions of dollars in cash on the table for the final showdown in some poker tournaments with the hope that they would win in the next game.

Hypothesis

The researchers had come with the hypothesis that memory of winning outcomes in the past forced the people go for more gambling in casinos and risk lots of money on the table. The results of the study more or less confirm the roles these cues play in forcing the people to play more, risking their money. In order to cross check the hypothesis, the researchers manipulated the memory of the participants for past winning outcomes with simple risky choice tasks. The researchers achieved this by asking the participants to select one of the two doors as part of a computer test.

Testing Technique

The authors of the study gave the participants the choice of four coloured doors to select from. Three of the doors always led to guaranteed outcomes (0, 40 or 80). On the other hand, the fourth door led to a risky 50/50 outcome that carried 20 or 60 points. Later in the study, the team members reminded the participants about their past winning or losing outcome based on the points that they got, depending upon the door they opened. When the team members told the participants about the points they had got, they tended to go towards the risky door more often.

Caribbean Resort Hotel Gambling

Perhaps you have heard tell of the fabulous Caribbean resort hotel casinos, which combine the excitement and glamour of Las Vegas with the magnificent beaches and tropical ambience of the Caribbean. Along with high-tech slot machines and table games, Caribbean casinos offer nightlife options such as discos, dance clubs, and bars. Perhaps the most famous casinos are in the Bahamas (although locals are forbidden to gamble, tourists are welcome to the action). Atlantis Casino is the Caribbean’s largest with over 30,000 square feet of fun, including a thousand slot machines and eighty gaming tables. Atlantis Casino also features outdoor terraces with several restaurants and a fourteen-acre Waterscape aquarium (the largest outdoor aquarium in the world), with immense underwater glass tunnel walkways where people and fish can meet face-to-face. Novice gamblers can take gaming lessons. Crystal Palace Casino, just outside of Nassau, is another exciting casino on Cable Beach in the Bahamas. Crystal Palace has 700 slot machines and forty gaming tables with blackjack, roulette, baccarat, and craps. Royal Oasis Golf Resort and Casino on Grand Bahama Island features state-of-the-art slot machines with exciting gaming action, and an electronic sports book as well as table games and a nightclub. There are other great resort in the Caribbean casinos besides Bahamas. On Curacao, the gambling action is at Kura Hulanda Spa and Casino at Willemstad. The Dominican Republic is also a gaming paradise, with lots of world-class casinos all over the island (especially in Santo Domingo).

Have you ever played Caribbean Stud Poker? This variation on poker began in Aruba in the 1980’s, supposedly by a cruise ship director who wanted to make money. Caribbean stud poker combines blackjack with poker where instead of the players competing against themselves, all players compete against the house. One of the dealer’s cards is dealt face up where all the players can see it. Since its invention in Aruba, Caribbean Stud Poker has spread throughout the Caribbean and is one of the most popular casino games. Although the Caribbean is a fantastic place to enjoy some of the best casinos in the world, remember that each island has its own rules and laws about gambling, so you should check into the details wherever you are. Casino schedules can vary, so inquire before you go. Also, no children beneath the age of eighteen are permitted inside resort in Caribbean casinos, so you should provide other activities for your kids before hitting the slot machines and gaming tables.

Gambling Jargon: Know the Lingo to Do the Deeds! Here’s the Jargon for Popular Table Games

Don’t be left out when playing games in the casino! Learn gambling vocabulary as you learn the games. It’s important to understand this so you won’t feel like a novice when playing table games.To get you started, here is the meaning of some of the terminology used in popular gambling games:

BLACKJACK

Basic Strategy – Plays you should make to maximize your advantage

Burn Cards – Removed cards after the shuffle

Bust/Break – Exceeding a hand total of 21

Card Counting – Memorizing played cards with an assigned value

Color Up – Cashing in your chips

Double Down – To double your initial bet following the initial 2 card deal

Even Money – Cashing in your bet for a 1/1 payout when you have a blackjack against a dealer ace

Face Cards – Jacks, Queens, Kings (AKA picture cards)

First Base – First seat to the dealer’s left

Hit/Draw – Calling for another card to add to your hand

Hole Card – The dealer’s face down card

Insurance – A side bet for the player when the dealer has an ace showing

Pat Hand – A had worth at least 17 points

Push/Tie – Player and dealer with the same hand total

Shoe – A device used for holding and dispensing cards

Soft Hand- A hand with an ace counted as 11 or 1

Stiff Hand – A hand with little chance of winning if hit

Surrender – Giving u your hand to lose one half of your bet

Third base – Last seat to the dealer’s right

Up Card – Dealer’s first dealt card face up

CRAPS

Any Craps – A dice total of 2, 3, or 12

Big Red – a bet in the Any Seven box

Boxcars – When the dice total 12

Capped Dice – Crooked dice

Cold Table – When most shooters are not winning

Come Bet – A bet made after the point is established

Come Out Roll – First roll of the dice in a round

Don’t Come Bet – A bet made after the point is established (Outcome is opposite of the Come Bet)

Don’t Pass Bet – Betting against the shooter before the Come Out Roll

Free Odds – An additional bet behind the Pass Line Bet taken at true odds

George – A good tipper

Hardway – A 4,6,8,10 thrown as pairs

Place Bet- Betting that a place number (4-6, 8-10) will be thrown before a 7

Point Number – One of the numbers 4-6, 8-10 made on the come out roll

Press A Bet – To double your bet amount

Proposition Bets – (AKA Prop Bets) one roll and Hardway bets

Right Bettor – Betting that the shooter will win

Seven Out – When a 7 is rolled before the point number

Shooter – Player currently rolling the dice

Snake Eyes – When the dice total 2

Stiff – A poor tipper

Toke – A tip given to the dealer

Vigorish – ( AKA Vig) commission taken by the house

Wrong Bettor – Betting that the shooter will lose

Yo – The number 11 (AKA Yo-Leven)

POKER (TEXAS HOLD’EM STYLE)

Aces Up – A pair of Aces with another pair

All In – Betting all your remaining chips

Ante – The opening bet before dealing begins

Belly Buster – An inside straight draw

Big Slick – An Ace and a King

Blinds – 2 forced bets before any cards are dealt (small blind & big blind)

Boat – Slang for a Full House

Broadway – The highest straight possible with mixed suits, 10, J, Q, K, A

Button – A disk placed in front of a player acting as the dealer

Bullets – A pair of Aces

Call – To match the current bet

Check – To defer making a bet until another player does

Cowboys – Slang for a pair of Kings

Dead Hand – A hand with no chance of winning

Donkey/Fish – A bad player

Drawing Dead – A hand that will lose even if it improves

Flop – The first 3 community cards

Flush – 5 cards of the same suit

Full House – (AKA Boat ) 3 of one kind and 2 of another

Kicker – The highest unpaired card in a hand

Ladies – Slang for a pair of Queens

Muck – Face down discarded hands

Nuts – The highest possible hand

Overcard – A card that is higher than another

Quads- 4 of a kind

Rag(s) – Cards that add no value to your hand

Rainbow – Cards with different suits

River – The 5th and final community card

Rounder – One who makes a living at playing cards

Royal Flush – The highest hand possible, a suited 10, J, Q, K, A

Set/Trips – 3 of a kind

Short Stack – Having the fewest chips at the table

Straight Flush – 5 suited cards in sequential order

Tells – Behavior that gives other players information about how you might play your hand

Tight – Someone who only plays premium hands

Tilt – Desperate to re-coup losses, causing bad decisions

Turn – The 4th community card

Under the Gun – First player to bet after the big blind

Wheel – The lowest straight possible with mixed suits A, 2, 3, 4,5

Wired – A pair dealt in the first 2 cards

So there you have it. Learning this jargon will assist you on your path to becoming a seasoned responsible gambler. Good Luck!