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Recomended Online Backgammon:
From: Robert Goldman

The Rich History of Backgammon

Backgammon is one of the oldest board games in history. Experts believe that backgammon or its precursor dates back to over 5,000 years ago in ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia (modern-day Iraq). The game has changed little over the centuries, a proof of the game's enduring legacy.

The name "backgammon" came from the old Saxon words "baec" or back, and "gamen" or game. Some experts also say that it is derived from the Welsh words "bach" and "cammaun" which means "small battle." After all, the game looks like a small battle.

The ancient Egyptians, Romans, Greeks and Mesopotamians all lay claim as the inventors of the game, although it is not clear which is the real one. In ancient Egypt, the game is called Senat. In fact, the world-famous tomb of Tutankhamen contains a Senat game set which the ancient Egyptians believe can be used by the young Pharaoh in the afterlife.

The ancient Greeks also had a similar version of backgammon named Ludus Duodecim Scriptorum. There are also similar games in ancient Rome and Mesopotamia. The Roman Emperor Nero was believed to have been a regular player of the game, and even if backgammon was the favorite game of royalty, it was also very popular with the lower class.

During the Crusades, backgammon was played regularly by knights of opposing armies. It was believed that before battles, the soldiers of the opposing camps played their own versions of backgammon.

In France, engravings of the artist Bonnart who lived during the 17th century showed the French royal family playing a game of tric-trac, another backgammon-like game. Another board game called Nard arrived in Europe during the 10th century.

In England, King Henry the VIII even banned the game and had the backgammon boards destroyed but his daughter Queen Elizabeth revived it. In most parts of Europe, backgammon was the game of choice among royal circles and the nobility.

However, the European continent is not the only playing ground of backgammon. Asia, the Middle East and the Americas also have their own versions of backgammon, which goes to show that backgammon is a global game with a rich history.

Backgammon enjoyed much popularity until the 17th century, when card games supplanted backgammon as the favorite recreational activity. But the game refused to die, and in the early 1900s, the introduction of the Doubling Cube caused a strong revival of the game. With the invention of the Internet, the old and classical game of backgammon has turned to the Internet where it can now be enjoyed by millions of people all over the world.

Backgammon has survived thousands of years and countless civilizations, and may be here to stay forever. Grab a backgammon set now and enjoy the experience of playing like the Kings and Queens of olden times.