Be a Master of Craps – Tips and Techniques: The Background of Craps

Be clever, play smart, and become versed in craps the proper way!

Games that use dice and the dice themselves date back to the Crusades, but current craps is approximately one hundred years old. Current craps come about from the 12th Century English game called Hazard. No one knows for sure the ancestry of the game, although Hazard is believed to have been made up by the Anglo, Sir William of Tyre, around the 12th century. It is believed that Sir William’s paladins played Hazard amid a siege on the citadel Hazarth in 1125 AD. The name Hazard was acquired from the castle’s name.

Early French settlers imported the game Hazard to Acadia. In the 1700s, when displaced by the English, the French relocated south and settled in the south of Louisiana where they a while later became known as Cajuns. When they departed Acadia, they brought their favored game, Hazard, along. The Cajuns streamlined the game and made it fair mathematically. It is believed that the Cajuns adjusted the name to craps, which was derived from the term for the non-winning throw of two in the game of Hazard, known as "crabs."

From Louisiana, the game migrated to the Mississippi river boats and all over the country. A few consider the dice maker John H. Winn as the creator of modern craps. In 1907, Winn designed the modern craps layout. He appended the Don’t Pass line so players can wager on the dice to lose. Afterwords, he invented the spots for Place bets and added the Big 6, Big 8, and Hardways.

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