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Fortuna: from The Romans to the 21st century

 article about Fortuna: from The Romans to the 21st century
2015-08-11 07:59:31
While some people might think that games relating to chance or luck, or whatever else like that, are the things of the recent past, the fact is that gaming, or gambling as such has actually been around pretty much since the beginning of mankind. The general form of it might have changed over time, but the basics, and even some games, have remained the same. Even the word, or name, Fortuna, has remained with us for thousands of years.

Ancient Romans built the second temple dedicated to the goddess Fortuna, the ruler of chance and fortune, in 293 BC. She could also be called the goddess of gambling, considering she was called upon when making bets or hoping for the best. She was admired and counted on by all classes of people, from peasants to elite, who gambled independent of the fact that gambling was rather illegal at the time.

But what did the medieval gambling look like? Throwing stones at each other and making bets who will be hit first? Well, maybe. But that's just an ignorant random idea. In reality one of the main elements of gambling still available today, the dice, might have been invented already as far back as 6000 BC (as such artifacts have been found in ancient Egyptian tombs). The first mention of it though is from around 450 BC by Sophocles.

During the ancient times throwing of dice was believed to be controlled by the gods - I guess in that sense, for some people not much has changed. Sometimes even rulers were chosen with a help of a dice. One could say it's kind of a good way to choose a president even today - wouldn't give any one candidate an advantage, and even the size of their pockets wouldn't have any importance in getting elected or not. These days they only say they are chosen by gods, but chances are that if they were given the option to roll a dice for it, none of them would go for it. But that's already another story.

In 15th century, while different dice games remained, cards were introduced, with some of the games being amazingly complex considering the time.

Today there are special venues for gambling of all sorts, be it dice, cards or anything else, from land casinos to online casinos (such as The first known casino was established in Venice, Italy, back in 1638, called the Casinò di Venezia. Surprisingly enough it is still in operation. The first online casino was created only around 20 years ago, back in 1994. So online gaming, compared to everything else, could be considered still in baby shoes.

But it still all started with The Romans!

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