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Learn to Play Craps – Tricks and Techniques: The Background of Craps

Be cunning, play smart, and pickup craps the right way!

Dice and dice games date back to the Middle Eastern Crusades, but modern craps is just about a century old. Current craps developed from the old Anglo game referred to as Hazard. No one absolutely knows the beginnings of the game, but Hazard is believed to have been discovered by the Anglo, Sir William of Tyre, around the 12th century. It’s supposed that Sir William’s soldiers gambled on Hazard through a blockade on the castle Hazarth in 1125 AD. The title Hazard was derived from the fortification’s name.

Early French settlers brought the game Hazard to Acadia. In the 1700s, when expelled by the British, the French moved south and settled in southern Louisiana where they at a later time became Cajuns. When they left Acadia, they took their preferred game, Hazard, with them. The Cajuns modernized the game and made it more mathematically fair. It’s said that the Cajuns changed the name to craps, which was derived from the name of the bad luck toss of two in the game of Hazard, known as "crabs."

From Louisiana, the game moved to the Mississippi barges and across the nation. A great many consider the dice maker John H. Winn as the father of modern craps. In the early 1900s, Winn created the current craps layout. He appended the Don’t Pass line so players could bet on the dice to not win. Afterwords, he designed the spaces for Place bets and put in place the Big 6, Big 8, and Hardways.

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