27 Jun /14


Backgammon is one of the oldest board games around and players of the game could be found in Iran as early as 5,000 years ago. It found its way into the English language only through a letter by the historian and writer, James Howell. In addition to being the world’ s first blogger, a compiler of dicitionaries, he wrote a novel in letter form. In a letter written in 1635 to Master Stone, he reprimands the boy for speaking Italian and French and neglecting Latin. The boy also plays backgammon rather than the game Irish which Howell considered to be a superior game.

Backgammon was popular in England during this era and was referred to in a popular play of the day, Madame Fickle, when a character comments, “I won 300 guineas the other night at backgammon”. It has since gained momentum with players over the centuries and world backgammon championships have been held since 1967. In 1982, an American court ruled that it was a game of skill, not of chance, and thus not subject to legislation on gambling.

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