Rummy – A Brief History – Evolution Of The Game

Rummy – A Brief History – Evolution Of The Game

Being one of the oldest card games in the world, Rummy goes back a long way in time. Its history is interesting for both the gaming and history enthusiasts. If you look for the history of Rummy on the web, you will notice that a man named David Parlett had stated a game called Conquian, which originated in Mexico, to be the roots of modern-day Rummy. Surprisingly Conquian is thought to be around 400 years old.

French Roots?

Nonetheless, this is not the end of the fascinating history of RummyInterestingly enough, the French are thought to come up with the idea and metamorphosis of Rummy from an existing card game in the 19th and 20th centuries. That game, formerly known as “Whiskey Poker”, later got modified to “Rum Poker”.

Chinese & Japanese Roots?

Apart from the American & European connections as to the origination of Rummy, it is also believed that the Chinese had a noteworthy contribution, too. A card game called Mahjong has the same structural framework as that of Rummy – draw and discard.

Japan is another country that played a massive role in giving birth to Rummy owing to a game called Hanafuda, which was initially introduced to them by the Portuguese.

There have been so many pre-existing card games all around the world which might serve as nuances for Rummy. This is the specific reason why it is genuinely not possible to trace down the exact roots and origins of Rummy.

How Did The Game Get Its Name? 

It is widely believed that the word ‘Rummy’ comes from the word ‘Rum’, which is British slang for odd or queer. This indicates that it might be how the British originally saw the game. A lot of people also assume that it might have been ‘Rum Poker’. It is because this game is known to be the ancestor of all variations of Rummy.

Another assumption is that it comes from the drink, Rum. The player who lost had to pay for the drinks of all the players. Makes sense, doesn’t it?

The subjectiveness about the history of Rummy has made way for the ramifications for various types of Rummy in the contemporary world. This stems from the fact that a few decades, or even centuries ago, Rummy did not use to be what it is now. Rummy varied across cultures and borders.

As time passed, with the growth of technology, Rummy’s variations became more in number, and also got introduced to the online gaming industry. Furthermore, Rummy has always been known to break down walls and bring people together.

With the advent of technology, Rummy became even more widespread when people realised the fun and brain-work that it promises.


Fascinating and captivating, the history of Rummy can indeed make someone eager to know about the game. There are some grey areas as well due to which the history of Rummy is not that simple to comprehend.

Today, people are writing the history of Rummy in the online and digital world. Rummy is known today for its demand from players to work their brains out to win, and in the process, develop cognitive traits. Rummy is a game that helps you relax and have fun while being productive at the same time.

Everett Owensby