For several generations, Baccarat has maintained its place as the “King of Casino Games”. This card game, which is very popular among gamblers, was reserved for the aristocratic upper class of yesteryear. And at the moment it is conquering the traditional and online casino halls with three variations: Baccara Chemin de fer as well as Baccarat Banque and Punto Banco. Discover here the sources of the famous blackjack cousin.
The glorious legend of Baccarat
Historians are tireless in delving into the distant past of casino games to pass on their source to gamblers. Some even rely on legends to discover the origin of a game. In fact, baccarat has one. It is from this story that the Italian, Falguerein, copied himself to invent Baccarat.
Once upon a time (as in fairy tales, no) priests were obliged to play the life of a blonde virgin with a roll of the dice. A practice to honour the gods according to their religion. The chaste woman threw them herself to seal her fate. The score decided whether this young woman deserved life or death. If the dice totalled 8 or 9, she would be raised to the rank of priestess. If the small cubes show a 6 or 7, the vestal remains alive, otherwise a 5 is a death sentence.
The Italian origins of Baccarat
It would be presumptuous to hold the precise version of the source of the baccarat game. Clearly, opinions differ, with some claiming that the Middle Ages marked the beginning of the game and others believing that the beginning was in the 15th century. According to the first version, aristocrats once played baccarat for entertainment, but from tarot cards.
The second hypothesis suggests that the game was conceived in early 15th century Italy. This period is full of anecdotes about the success of Felix Falguerein, a famous Italian gambler. This interpretation is confirmed by the primitive meaning of the word baccarat: “zero” or “nothing” according to the translation of the Italian language. The source of the name is said to be associated with the theory that 10’s and figure cards have a zero value in card games. That said, the worldwide diffusion of the game stems from the success shared by the French sovereign, Charles VIII.
The spread of Baccarat
Charles VIII initiated Baccarat in France for the great pleasure of the French nobility. Since then, this card game was reserved for the Elite. Big bettors and high rollers were totally captivated by this game of chance. Baccarat tables were used to prove the courage and daring of good people with the colossal risks. The casinos of the French Riviera took up the concept to develop the game with multiple variations.
After this initiative, Baccarat took possession of casinos all over Europe, specifically in the UK where the game is very popular. The British Empire then took the card game to the rest of the world, to Asia and America. The cousin of Black Jack reinforced its notoriety throughout the world from the 19th century onwards.
However, it was not until the early 1950s with the initiative of Dune Casino that Las Vegas casinos would accept this new entertainment. The other renowned gambling establishments in Nevada would slowly follow suit. This expansion led to the creation of a few new versions of Baccarat, including Punto Banco. This variant is the most played in the United States at the moment.