The History Of Baccarat Casino Game
Written by Phoebe
Published date · May 13, 2022 | Last Updated · Dec. 14, 2022 | Read Time: 4 mins
Baccarat or Baccara is one of the most famous classic card games enjoyed in casinos worldwide. Its simplicity and easy gameplay are one of the main reasons baccarat is so popular. Baccarat is among the games with the lowest house edge, which is approximately 1%. With the advent of online casinos in the gambling industry, baccarat has been more popular than ever. It is unlikely to come across a reputable online casino that does not feature at least one variation of baccarat in its gaming catalogue. At first, baccarat was a game reserved for elites only, but with the passage of time and evolution in technology, baccarat is now accessible to everyone from anywhere in the world. We all know of baccarat as one of the most lucrative and well-known casino games nowadays, but how did it reach such heights of success? The following article explores the origins of the game along with the events that lead to its worldwide fame.
The Origins Of Baccarat
There are a lot of speculations regarding the origins of baccarat. There are many different opinions about when and where baccarat originated from. Some people suggest that it originated in France, while some believe that its roots can be traced back to ancient China or Rome. However, the most common belief suggests that it originated in the 15th century in Italy by a man named Felix Falguiere, who called it baccara which is the Italian word for zero. He named it so because the majority of the cards in baccarat are worth zero. Legends say that Felix Falguiere, an avid gambler, based the game on the old Etruscan myth of a woman who had to throw a dice; the result of the throw would determine her fate. An eight or nine would’ve made her a priestess, and six or seven would allow her to live, but she would’ve lost all her priestly roles in society. If she threw anything lower than six, she would be sentenced to death and drowned in the sea. However, some sources also say that Falguiere was primarily inspired by games such as Macao and Le Her and based the game on them.
Introduction Of Baccarat In France And England
In the 19th century, Baccarat quickly spread from Italy and moved to its neighbouring country France. There, the French people named it Chemin de Fer, which they later shortened to ‘Chemmy’. The game quickly became the favourite pastime of King Charles VII, and he made it a game exclusively for the French nobility. Soon, the game became very popular among the rich and noble in France and remained so for many centuries. Soon after, French travellers introduced the baccarat game in England. Unlike in France, everyone had the liberty to play baccarat in England. It gained immense fame after a famous scriptwriter, Ian Fleming, learned how to play the game and created one of the most popular fictional characters in the world, James Bond, who loved baccarat.
The Conception Of Punto Banco
Over time, baccarat migrated to South America and the Caribbean, where another version of the game, ‘Punto Banco’, came into being. The main contrast between Punto Banco and other variants was that instead of playing against each other, the players played against the house only. As a result, the game became known as ‘American Bacarrat’ and rapidly became the preferred baccarat version in the casinos of South America. Tommy Renzoni (who later wrote many books on baccarat) came across punto banco during a visit to a casino in Argentina and brought the game to the Sands casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was not as popular as roulette and slot machines, and therefore, the casino marketed it as a game “not for everyone” by setting high minimum bets. In addition, casinos would hide the baccarat tables in separate rooms with luxurious interiors, away from the public eye. Nevertheless, the ‘exclusive’ aspect of the game successfully attracted the attention of many players.
The Advent Of Baccarat In the Online World
Baccarat has come a long way since its conception in the 15th century. The game has experienced a considerable rise in popularity in the last few decades, especially because of the inception of the internet and online casinos. Initially, only the rich and elite had the liberty to play baccarat, but it has become available to regular punters worldwide over the years. Its no doubt that the widespread availability of baccarat (courtesy of online casinos) is one of the major reasons for its boost in popularity. The switch to online casinos has opened it up to thousands of new players who weren’t aware of it before. Moreover, almost every online casino offers multiple baccarat variants, giving gamblers the option to choose according to their preferences.
Variants Of Baccarat
As time passed, many new versions of baccarat emerged, all of which punters enjoyed equally. Some of the most popular types of baccarat featured in casinos include:
- Punto Banco
- Chemin de Fer
- Baccarat Banque
- Mini Baccarat
- European Baccarat
Despite its controversial history, baccarat has proved to be one of the most renowned table games in offline and online casinos all over the world. After struggling for many years, it has finally gotten its recognition. Now, it has become one of the most sought-after games because of the easy accessibility of online casinos. In addition, the game is highly lucrative and exciting, and the Baccarat rules are straightforward and easy to comprehend for novice players. As a result, thousands, if not millions, of bettors play baccarat regularly as a form of recreation or to potentially win big.