Being one of the most ancient casino games in human history, baccarat dates back more than 500 years. Despite its long history, the game has managed to remain one of the people’s favourite card games played in casinos today, even though it was majorly played among the upper class and aristocrats in its earliest years. During this time, the style of play of the game is different from today as four different dealers dealt cards. This means each player can wager against themselves and the house. There is only one dealer involved in baccarat games today – this means a player can only place wagers against the house, which acts as the bank. Also, three major versions of the game have emerged over the years: Punto Banco, Chemin de fer, and Baccarat Banque.
Today, online baccarat and traditional baccarat in brick-and-mortar casinos are highly popular in many countries worldwide, including India, thanks to the massive rise of online gambling. Although there are confusing laws surrounding gambling in India, and the activity is prohibited in the country, for the most part, States such as Sikkim and Goa have legalized land-based casinos where baccarat can be played. The game, especially its online form, is an excellent opportunity for many gamblers in India to make money from the comfort of their homes by visiting offshore casinos online using their phones. Baccarat is a simple card game of luck as it does not require specific skills and strategies.
In this article, we will explore the history of baccarat and how it has managed to remain popular in the gambling world.
Baccarat was introduced in the 14th century. It has its roots in medieval Italy, from where it got its name. According to most sources, the game was invented by an avid Italian gambler named Felix Falguiere or Falguierein and was played using Tarot cards – cards used to foretell people’s future at the time. He named the game ‘baccara’, which in Italy means ‘zero’, which explains a lot about the game. The game is called ‘zero’ because all jacks, queens, kings, and tens are valued at zero. There is also fearsome mythology behind the game’s history; however, the version that says Felix Falguiere created it is the most popular and widely believed. When baccarat was introduced, it was only played among the nobles because it required high stakes.
Baccarat in France
After baccarat had grown widely popular in Italy, the game spread to France around the 15th century, where it got the spelling ‘ baccarat’ to date. The game was initiated by French soldiers who had returned from the struggle with Italy and was later known as ‘Chemin de Fer’. This version later became extremely popular globally, and the name was later shortened to ‘chemmy.’ The rulers of France at the time, such as Charles VIII and Napoleon, adopted the game as their favourite leisure, and the game’s popularity spread further when casinos were built around the city.
However, the story changed when King Louis XIV ruled over the country in 1837 and banned every form of gambling activity, including baccarat. Thus, the fame of the game went down drastically around this time, even though people were playing it secretly in the underground.
Baccarat in America
Soon after baccarat blew up in France, it began spreading into South America around the 19th century. The American version of the game was known as ‘Punto Banco’ and became an integral part of the culture – played both for money and fun in several casinos today. In this version of the game, also known as American baccarat, players can only play against the house and not against fellow players. Thus, only the house, which is the casino, can serve as the bank and not the players.
Baccarat was introduced to USA casinos by Tommy Renzoni around the late 1950s. He brought baccarat to Sands casino, Las Vegas, and this started the widespread popularity of the game among casinos in the US. By the time baccarat was introduced in American casinos, other card games such as blackjack, roulette, and poker had grown popular. However, punto banco quickly became adopted when casino owners directed the game only to a selected few by increasing its minimum wagers and setting up tables in special rooms with luxurious chairs and velvet curtains. Soon, this version of the game gained massive attention across almost every casino in the US, the UK, and Australia.
Online Baccarat today
In recent years, online gambling has witnessed a burgeoning rise and has taken over the entire gambling industry. With the availability of high-speed internet and the penetration of mobile devices, several land-based casino games can now be easily accessed and played for money online. Today, baccarat has risen to become one of the most popular online card games. People can now play baccarat online from the comfort of their homes by using the numerous online casinos available. A significant reason the game is widely loved is that it has great odds and lower stakes – thus, the chances of winning are slightly increased than in other games.
Baccarat has come a long way down the history lane and thus gone through many changes in its style of play across different cultures. However, the fact remains that the game is a simple casino game that serves as both entertainment and a money-making opportunity to players. Today, baccarat is offered by almost every online gambling site you come across. However, you must be careful to use licensed and trustworthy online casinos such as Parimatch. Parimatch ensures a fantastic casino experience by providing outstanding services such as simple withdrawal and deposit methods, responsive customer service, and promo offers.