Bingo was around as early as the 1500s. Contrary to popular belief that the game started in the USA, it actually originated from Italy, and was first called Il Gioco del Loto dÍtalia. The game was picked up fast by the Italians and, soon after, countries in Europe such as Britain and France picked up on the game as well. When it arrived in France, the name was shortened to Le Lotto. But it was only in the 1920s when a similar game called Beano was discovered by a toymaker, named Edwin S. Lowe, who then introduced the game to his family and friends, that the term bingo was coined.
Since then, the game has become the favourite pastime of people both rich and poor. It was relatively easy to play and prizes were at stake. Some played it just for fun and to pass time, but many people played it for the money. The game has undergone minor changes since it was invented in the 16th century. After it was introduced in the USA, more and more countries adopted the game and now people all over the world know how to play it. There are bingo socials held in places so players can play and mingle with each other while enjoying a game or two.
Just like any other conventional game, when the Internet took the world by storm in the 1990s, Bingo was one of the games that went online. People can now play the game against other people not just from their area but from all over the world as well. The Internet has allowed it to cross boundaries and be played in real time all over the globe. Prize money has also become bigger, and there are now literally thousands of sites where you can play the game online. Even social media sites like Facebook have bingo that can be played, but without the prize money. You can play it to pass the time when you’re bored.
Bingo has definitely transcended time. From its humble beginnings in Europe in the 16th century until now, it has continued to flourish and has kept up with the changing times and technology. Expect that in the years to come it will still be around and played by future generations. It is no longer just a game for old people, but for the young ones looking for an easy game to play and earn money as well. You can be sure that it will be around for a thousand more years.
Image via freedigitalphotos.net (Stuart Miles)