The History Behind Keno


The History Behind Keno

Many online casinos now include Keno in the games that they make available to their players. Previously the game was only available to play at certain locations throughout the United States.

Keno is a game that was first discovered over 3000 years ago. It is said to have been invented by the leader of the Han Dynasty, Cheung Leung. When he invented the game the city he lived in was in the midst of a long term war which had almost completely drained the city of its resources and money. At that time Keno was played differently than it is today.

The version of Keno first invented by Leung was based on a poem called “The Thousand Character Classic,” which was very popular at the time. This poem has been used as a tool to help teach people how to count. It used a thousand different Chinese symbols. The poem had four characters and 250 phrases for each one of them. Of the 250 phrases, 120 of them were assigned to eight subdivisions of characters.

Players that correctly guessed an entire subdivision of the poem received 10 taels (a Chinese currency) for free. Even today, this version of Keno is still played by those living in China. However, while the game used to involve a thousand characters, the Chinese now play with only 80 of them.

Through this game, Leung was able to acquire the money he needed to pay for the city’s war. When the game became increasingly popular it was then called “Game of the White Pigeon.” The reason for this name change was due to the fact that the game was played in each of the main towns and cities. Because of the mountainous nature of China, communication was made difficult. As a result, those living nearby were informed of losses and successes in the game by a dove.

At the time the game of Keno became so popular that when the Great Wall of China was built, it was funded using the money generated by the game. After Keno dropped off in popularity for a long time and reemerged as the game gamblers are familiar with today.

Starting in the early years of the 20th century, Keno came to the United States when it became the game of choice in San Francisco. Chinese sailors first brought Keno to America. At that time it became an underground success story because any and all gambling was outlawed. It was when Keno came to America that it went from using Chinese characters to the numbers used today.

In an attempt to exploit a loophole in the anti-gambling law, casinos changed the name of the game known as Keno to racehorse casino. Every number used in any game of Keno was repurposed as a horse. After gambling laws were passed in Nevada, casinos went back to using the standard name of the game. Today Keno is offered in many land based casinos and online casinos also.

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