When Was the First Casino Invented?

Dating as far back as the Stone Age, humans have shown a very high disposition to gambling. From tossing a coin to a dice, gambling has been an obsession with us. The gambling industry has experienced tremendous change over time to become what we see today. The games we play today in the casino like blackjack and roulette take root from this old tradition. Although we enjoy our favorite casino games today, we must first delve into the history and seek to understand the origin of what we know today as a casino. Dive in to find an answer to the question: when was the first casino invented?

First Casino

Origin of Gambling

Many discoveries of objects resembling dice are dating back thousands of years. Magicians, seers, and later gamblers made use of these objects. Gambling as a fun activity is dated back to the 6th Century in ancient Rome. Circus people played craps and made bets. It eventually became a commercialized worldwide industry. We can boldly say gambling is one of the documented oldest forms of entertainment. So, when was the first casino invented?

When Was the First Casino  Invented?

Historians traced legal gambling in a casino back to Venice in 1638. The owners named the casino Il Ridotto. The term casino originated from an Italian word meaning “a small house” literally. Before the legalization of gambling, it went down in tiny private houses. Dance and music accompanied the games in the background. Also, drinks were available for the pleasure of the players. The owners set up Il Ridotto for the amusement of people, especially during the Venetian carnival. They granted only the elite of the society entrance into the gambling establishment. In the same vein, the bets were huge.

What You Need to Know About Modern-Day Casino Games

Games played in the casino from the 16th Century to the 19th Century varied by little or no difference. With the advent of technology, the ball game changed. Various forms of games gamblers could bet on in the casino become available. Also, a new variant of games became available. For example, the switch from regular poker to Texas Holdem was a big one.

Below are some of the significant moves throughout the century:

First Casino

1. Onscreen Poker

Imagine traveling back in time and telling a young gambler that you play poker onscreen. Funny right? That is how much difference the game has changed. Presently, different variants of Texas Holdem are available digitally. In general, casino games are now available digitally.

2. Slot Machines Have Evolved

In the 1890s, The slot machine came into existence. As you can imagine, this game was not available predating the 19th Century. But with the advancement in technology, the first set of gamers wouldn’t recognize the present-day machines. The original set of slot machines have solid reels inside a case, and they gave out the winning physically. The prices for winning in the early days were more merchandise than actual cash.

When the reels in the machine stop spinning, the operator compares the images displayed to a preset pay chart compared to the screen’s character. The customer usually found the chart beside the machine.

Presently, the machines have become fully digitalized on a screen. Computer chips now run the slot machine independent of an operator.

3. Faro Has Gone Into Extinction

In the 19th Century, people played faro a lot. It was one of the most popular games. Most casinos have phased it out. In the united states, no casino has offered the game for over 30 years. Other games like blackjack, poker, and various games have driven the faro game into extinction.

The game is played with a standard playing card. The faro board has 13 playing cards attached to it. Each card is ranked from ace placed at the bottom and to the king placed at the top on the board where individuals could place bets.

This card is separate from the deck used during the game, which is 52 in number, except the house removed a few from it upon agreement from the players on board.

The player can bet on any card, and the player and dealer dictate the bet lot. Similar to table games, faro had a minimum and maximum wager. The dealer dealt two cards to players. The players won any bet that they placed on the first card, and they received their winnings. They lost any bet that they put on the second card.

The game went into extinction because most players preferred poker games and even blackjack.

4. Roulette is Still the Same

With the rapid change in the gambling industry, one of the games which remains the same is roulette.

Gamblers play roulette with the same set of rules using the exact mechanism and materials.

The wheel and ball remain the same. The ball still has 37 or 38 numbers depending on the variant. When roulette started gaining ground, it had a single zero. It brought the total number of spaces to 37. In the US, a second space that made a double zero was added. The total number of holes on the wheel is 38 holes.

The Birth of Online Casino

With advancements in technology, casinos have gradually moved from the physical space to the internet, which grants excellent anonymity to the user. Users can game from the comfort of their home and still maintain their hidden identity. While still making a good amount of money. The casinos pay the winnings directly into the bank account of the registered users without any stress to the user.

Top online games include.

1. Blackjack

Blackjack is the biggest online betting game operated by the casino. People knew it previously as Vingt-Un. It has an alternative name known as Twenty-One, which is a nationwide family of banking games. Blackjack is the American version, which has other variants, such as the European or British version.

People play the card game by comparing the cards between a couple of players and a dealer. The number of players in the game could be as small as one. The reason for this is because the competition is not against other players but the dealer.

2. Poker

Poker is one of the most popular online betting games available. It can be described as any variant of a card game where the players’ wager which hand is the best. This decision is made according to the rule of the particular game being played. Typically, players always use a standard deck while playing poker, but all the other factors can vary. The players can change the number they would deal with and the total number of cards in play.

One common action in poker games is that the first round of betting begins with a forced bet. One or more players could make this bet.

3. Baccarat

Baccarat is a card game where players compare the two hands. People know the two hands as the player and the banker. A round of play is known as a coup. A coup has three possible results, which are player, banker, and tie. A player is a result with the highest value.

Baccarat has three different types which are Punto Banco, Chemmy, and Baccarat Banque. It is not sure how and when the game was invented. Some sources point to Baccarat being developed in the 19th Century.

4. Roulette

Roulette has its roots in the Italian game known as Biribi. The name “Roulette” was gotten from the French word, which meant “little wheel.” The players can place bets on more than one thing in the game. One could place bets on a single number or various groups of numbers. Players can also place bets on whether the color would be red or black. There is the chance to bets on either odd or even numbers. Players can decide to bet on if the numbers would be high or low.

5. Craps

Craps is generically a game that is home to the United States. It is gradually gaining traction in regions such as Asia and also in Europe. Players have a high chance of having a good run after the pass has been set. This is a significant quality that explains why people love the game so much. Typically, the live version of this game is full of the hustle and bustle and intense social interaction. However, this is why the online version of the game feels different.

An advantage of the online version of the Craps game is that it feels easier to bet on the “don’t pass.” When one is playing online, you would not feel like you have to go against the crowd.


So, when was the first casino invented? The short answer is 1638 and things have changed significantly since then.