Become Versed in Craps – Pointers and Strategies: The History of Craps

Be clever, play cunning, and master craps the right way!

Games that use dice and the dice themselves date back to the Middle Eastern Crusades, but current craps is approximately a century old. Modern craps developed from the ancient English game referred to as Hazard. Nobody knows for sure the ancestry of the game, however Hazard is said to have been discovered by the Englishman, Sir William of Tyre, sometime in the twelfth century. It’s believed that Sir William’s knights bet on Hazard during a siege on the citadel Hazarth in 1125 AD. The title Hazard was acquired from the citadel’s name.

Early French colonizers brought the game Hazard to Acadia. In the 18th century, when banished by the British, the French headed south and settled in southern Louisiana where they at a later time became Cajuns. When they departed Acadia, they took their favored game, Hazard, along. The Cajuns modernized the game and made it mathematically fair. It’s believed that the Cajuns changed the name to craps, which was derived from the name of the bad luck toss of 2 in the game of Hazard, known as "crabs."

From Louisiana, the game moved to the Mississippi riverboats and all over the nation. Many think the dice builder John H. Winn as the founder of modern craps. In the early 1900s, Winn built the current craps layout. He appended the Do not Pass line so gamblers could bet on the dice to not win. Later, he designed the boxes for Place bets and added the Big 6, Big 8, and Hardways.

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