History of Blackjack

Blackjack, as we now recognise it, is the most popular worldwide casino banking game there is. You play this casino game with one or more 52 card decks between a player and the dealer. However, not against other players. It’s has been about in its current form for nearly a century. But the history of blackjack thought to date back much earlier than that.

The obvious forerunner to the history of Blackjack was the game of Twenty-one. It is referenced in the early 17th Century book Novelas Ejemplares by Miguel de Cervantes (well-known Spanish author of the more famous Don Quixote). The author himself was  Ïa keen gambler. The main protagonists of his tale Rinconete y Cortadillo, are a couple of tricksters working in Seville. Their game, at which they were prodigious cheats, was Ventiuna (Spanish for twenty-one) with the Spanish baraja deck.

There are also later references to the game in France. Baccarat, a considerably older card game devised by the French. It was another pre-curser of the Blackjack we know and love.

It emerged in French casinos and quickly spread throughout the rest of Western Europe. And it was soon after the French Revolution, in the early 19th Century, that the game travelled to the US. Where riverboats, with smoke-filled poker rooms, float down the Mississippi and the nation was slowly introduced to the game.

After that, it was played in the casinos where they would attract players by offering payouts on certain combinations. For example hands with the ace of spades and a black jack garnered a ten-to-one return. It was called “Blackjack” and has since evolved into the modern game in which a Blackjack refers to any hand of an ace. Plus a ten or face card, regardless of suit or colour.

In the 1920’s, the introduction of alcohol prohibition which targets venues where Blackjack was played. It caused a decline in popularity of the game almost wiping it out entirely. However, with the eventual end of prohibition, card rooms had a renaissance across America. Then the game started to gain followers once again.

This popularity continues to this day, and online gambling has brought it back to an even greater audience. These days you can access a real-time blackjack table with live players at any time and anywhere in the world. As long as you have an Internet connection – local gambling laws allowing of course.

Some of the well known online Blackjack variants that you may come across are Progressive Blackjack, Spanish Blackjack, Blackjack Switch, Multi-Hand Blackjack, Vegas Strip Blackjack, Atlantic City Blackjack and Double Diamond Blackjack.

Want to know more? Then learn about the Basics of Blackjack today.