The game of baccarat is one of the oldest casino games. In fact, according to baccarat history, the game was documented as early as the 1300s, when it appeared in France. According to legend, the game came originally from Italy, and indeed the word baccarat in Italian means zero. The word baccarat or zero refers to the fact that all tens, jacks, queens and kings have a value of zero in the game. Any hand with a total of ten, like a three plus a seven, will also equal zero.
Five hundred years of baccarat history passed before the game became accepted in Europe. At first, it was the French nobility who were taken with the game, and their favourite version of baccarat was called chemin de fer. Eventually it caught on in England too, and the game was taken to the United States by the French and English who emigrated there. According to baccarat history, the game was taken to Cuba where the version played there became known as Punto Banco.
Three Original Versions of the Game
In baccarat history there have been the three original versions of the game that have become the most popular, chemin de fer, baccarat banquet and punto banco. All versions of the game have identical rules, and the difference between the three is in the dealing of the cards. The most widespread version that is played in the United States today is punto banco, where the dealer deals all of the cards, and the players just bet on one of the three outcomes. Even today, most casinos will provide its visitors the choice of all three baccarat versions. In fact, one of the most iconic images in baccarat history relating to baccarat is of James Bond playing a game of baccarat at a plush casino, usually for very high stakes.
Mini Baccarat Now the Accepted Form
After a while, it was decided to simplify the game a bit, and make it possible for a single dealer to run, and this gave rise to mini baccarat. There was now only an initial bet, and with the dealer controlling the rest of the actions quickly and expertly, it became possible to play more hands and games with lower stakes could be introduced, thus appealing to a wider player base.
The game of baccarat today is still popular with the casino nobility, the high rollers. The world’s biggest gamblers all seem to love the game, and it is not unusual to see the exchange of millions of dollars. The most recent development in baccarat history is the online casino. With the arrival of the internet era, a new chapter in the life of baccarat has begun.
The New Era of the Internet
Online casinos are growing incredibly fast in both numbers and popularity, and the range of games they now offer is amazing. More and more players prefer to play baccarat online, both for fun and for real money. Today most of the well established online casinos offer baccarat as one of the favourite card games, played under the classic rules of mini baccarat.
There are great bonuses offered, quick access, and the convenience of being able to play whenever you want, wherever you are. Some online gaming sites these days offer live dealers, where you are connected by a video link to a real life dealer. Most online casinos offer free games, which offer players a great chance to learn to play baccarat before spending any real money.