In Persia, the 16th century saw the birth of poker and the beginnings of the game can be traced to
a game called As Nas. ...[Read more]

As with any game, there are certain rules of etiquette that should be learned in order to avoid offending other players. ...[Read more]

History of Poker

In Persia, the 16th century saw the birth of poker and the beginnings of the game can be traced to a game called As Nas. As Nas was a game that is similar to today’s poker in that the game relied on different hand rankings that resemble the modern era’s concept of poker. One exception was that As Nas used a deck that contained only 25 cards and the cards themselves contained five suits rather than the standard four. Poker has transformed its image in the 21st century from a game that was played by crooks and lowlives to a game that can now be enjoyed by the masses. Poker has become the sexiest card game in the world and as a result some of the playing terms that are used in poker have become common phrases. Bluffing, having an ace up a sleeve, and other poker terms are used in the everyday vernacular with little thought that they have their origin in a game that found its roots many centuries before.

The Name Itself

Poker, as it is called today, has gone by many different names in various eras and locations. Europeans once called the game poque or pochen. The name poker is thought to have German origins as a game called pochspiel which had a very similar game concept as does modern day poker. Others believe that the name, poker, is derived from the fact that money seemed to magically disappear from the pockets of unsuspecting victims as poker hustlers cleaned up around river boats and towns during the early days of poker in America. Thus, some claim poker gets its name from the magical term, hocus pocus.

Evolution of Poker

The earliest days of poker saw two very different types of players. There were those that conducted themselves respectfully and there were those that made their living by cheating or hustling the unsuspecting gentlemen poker players. As poker became an increasingly well-known game, the cheats and card playing professionals saw that they could win more money to wit they introduced a higher degree of difficulty to the game by adding more rounds of betting as well as wild cards. These changes occurred around 1850 and greatly reduced the odds of a novice ever beating a professional player.

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