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History of Rummy 500
The origins of Rummy 500 are vague at best. There are three separate theories on how Rummy came to be: Conquian Origin, Poker Origin, and Chinese Origin. Although the 500 Rummy history might be uncertain, the game is certainly here to stay.
Historians are divided even in this theory. Some say Rummy was invented in Spain (as Ramy) and was then brought over to Mexico. Others say the game was invented in Mexico and was played with a Spanish card set which included only 40 cards. Regardless, Rummy entered the southern United States at the end of the Nineteenth Century. There are even records of the Apache Indians playing a version of Rummy, called con quién or Coon-Can. Then, the game traveled to England where it was called “Rum”, which in their linguistics meant “odd”. When the game entered (or re-entered) America, it became known as Rummy.
There are many similarities between Poker and Rummy. Thus, it is a possibility that Rummy evolved from Poker. Poker was brought to America from the French settlers. Both games value sequences, called straights and three-of-a-kinds in Poker. Some historians think that Rummy evolved from Whiskey Poker, also called Rum Poker. Then, the came was abbreviated to be called Rum and then nicknamed to be called Rummy.
One of the best theories has its source with the Chinese. The Chinese were playing a card game which involved drawing and discarding cards in the 1700s. The came was called Mah-jong. Mah-jong eventually evolved into a game called kun p’ai. The game was very similar to Rummy with sequences and a similar goal of ridding your hand of all cards. Kin p’ai was adapted by the UK into a game that they called Khanhoo or Kon Khin. These names are very similar phonetically to Conquian or Coon-Can. Thus, the game could have arrived in America through the Chinese immigrants.
A few additional historical facts:
Rummy could have originated with any one of these theories; or, with theories yet to be discovered. Perhaps one day the mystery will be solved and minds can stop searching for the true history of Rummy 500. Regardless, a fun game that involves quick thinking, a little math and lots of fun, Rummy 500 will be around for years to come.
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