The game of Backgammon has a fancy and nice history. Although now it is known by anyone and can be played online as well, it has developed and formed a prominent entertainment. Many centuries ago, almost five thousand years back, for the first time it has been played in the Persian Empire, in Mesopotamia, today known as Iraq, Iran and Syria. So, it seems that this game appeared around 3,000 B.C, which is significantly early, to be honest.
Backgammon was played on wood surfaces, and dices were made of wood or bones. The aristocracy of Egypt, and the slaves in the same time found this a great recreation; and by this time they called the game ‘’Senat’’ or ‘’The Game of Thirty Squares”.
By the passing of time, backgammon reached to Greece and Rome, where three dices were used for throwing. While in Persia it was known as “Takhteh Nard”, meaning “Battle On Wood” and instead of three dices they played with two. Afterwards the game has become practicable in the Anglo Saxon civilization around the 7th century named as “Tables” or “Tabula”.
Many times the Church tried to forbid this game, but didn’t succeed. The backgammon’s popularity has started growing noticeably and players did not necessarily need a specific board to play on, as it could be drawn in sand for instance and instead of dice, they could use small stones.
One of the attempts of forbidding we can specify is the one that took place in the 16th century and was initialized by Woolsey, who was a cardinal. He was asking all the boards to be burned and called the game of Backgammon “the devil’s folly”. In addition, some English people suddenly invented an appropriate way of disguising these boards: they folded them into two to the size of a book in order to hide the board.
Considering the fact that the history of this game plays an important role in Roman Empire, some evidences were found related to Backgammon, the “Ludus Duodecim Scriptorum” which translated means “The Game of 12 Lines”. By the beginning of the 1st century, the variation of 3x12 lines was changed into 2x12 lines, which is obviously more similar to our Backgammon version.
Besides these, in Asia it was called as “Nardshir”, “Nardeeshir” or “Nard-i-shir”, having the same meaning. A detailed description of the game has been revealed which highlights the basic symbols of this, as follows: the board itself reflects a year, both sides separately have 12 points which show the months of one year, and altogether these 24 points are for the hours of a day. Above these, there are 30 checkers which express the days of one month, the number of opposing sides, which is 7 represents the days of one week, and the two different colours emphasize day and night contrast.
From civilization to civilization, the name of Backgammon has had different meanings; for example Chinese people called it “T’shu-p’u” around 220-265AD., in Japan it was known as “Sugoroku”.
“Nard” spread around Europe through Italy and Spain somewhere around 902AD and the “Tabula” term was also popular.
Nowadays it’s not just the popularity, but its history also is what makes the game of Backgammon so frequently played, not just one by one, but through the Internet in the same time. Many websites give you the chance to have a great time and enjoy playing online Backgammon. So, don’t waste your time, benefit of an exceptional entertainment and try the pleasure of throwing some dice!