Bingo is one of the most popular games in the UK, with more and more people signing up to play, especially online, every day. However, although it is one of our nation's favourite pastimes, lots of people still don't know too much about the history of bingo, and how it became so popular. So, with that in mind, here's a short history of bingo, from its inception to the modern day!
The Beginnings of bingo
Bingo began in Italy as a lottery called Lo Giuoco del Lotto d'Italia. The Lo Giuoco del Lotto d'Italia was first organised in 1530, to celebrate the unification of Italy and help to develop a new national culture. It worked, and soon the game was being played across the country. It then spread to France and Germany, where it was played both as a lottery game, and used as a method of teaching young children about numbers and mathematics. From here, it then spread to America, probably taken there by the many immigrants that made the journey across the Atlantic to start a new life in the new world.
Big in America
In America, the game that we call bingo was initially called Beano, and became very popular in the 19th and 20th centuries, particularly in the southern states, where it was played on the weekends. It was also taken across the country as part of travelling fairs, and this is where toy and games businessman Edwin Lowe came across it. He first played it at a fair in Jacksonville, where he saw that local people loved playing the game. He then took the idea to New York, and marketed it through his toy company. He later changed the name to bingo - and it became one of the most popular games in the world!
Today in the UK, bingo is one of our favourite pastimes, and more and more people play bingo now than ever before, especially online bingo. So, now that you know a little bit about the history of bingo, you can impress your fellow players the next time you play your favourite game!