The History of Roulette

Roulette is a casino game involving a spinning wheel. It is played on a table divided into sections that allow players to make a variety of wagers. The game has a history dating back to the 17th century. It was invented by Blaise Pascal, a French physicist and philosopher.

The roulette wheel has thirty-six compartments painted alternately red and black, with a green 0 and 00 on American-style wheels. The compartments are separated by metal partitions called frets.


There are a lot of fanciful stories about the origins of roulette. One of the most well-known is that it was invented by 17th-century French mathematician Blaise Pascal in his search for a perpetual motion machine. Other tales claim that it was derived from the Italian board game biribi, which features a layout of numbered squares similar to modern roulette bets.

Whatever the truth, the roulette cylinder was introduced in its primitive form more than 300 years ago in France. It was adapted from other games such as portique, hoca, bassette and roly poly, which have also been credited with being precursors to roulette. As European migrants made their way to America, many of these games followed along too. They brought with them the idea of a spinning wheel and the betting pattern that we know today.