A brief history of sports betting


Betting, or more precisely gambling, is older than modern civilization and is as old as humanity. Given human nature, it can be assumed that we placed bets tens of thousands of years ago, perhaps not in the form we know today, but certainly it was some kind of swap based on the assumed outcome. Well, people like to put things into context, otherwise most of us cannot understand clearly. It is for this reason that, shall we say, “modern” bets appeared somewhere in ancient Greece during the Olympic Games. This practice was continued by the ancient Romans because they liked to borrow ideas from the Greeks. And from then on, it has been kept alive to this day where sports betting is a multi-billion dollar industry that continues to grow.

Of course, people tend to improve things, so sports betting has taken many different forms over the centuries. Today we have dozens of different ways to bet on literally anything, not just sports. So don’t worry if using terminology like head-to-head, or half bet Totalizer confuses you. Sports betting is certainly a world of its own and requires some introduction.

Olympics and gladiator fights as early entertainment for the masses

Sports betting is always associated with popular sports. Today it is mostly associated with football or horse racing, at least here in Europe. The early Olympic Games in ancient Greece and the later gladiatorial fights in ancient Rome were events that attracted large crowds, and so did the early sports betting, of course. The Greeks liked to bet on athletes, much like we do today. The Romans then legalized betting (if only in Rome) and placed bets on gladiators and chariot races, insane popular entertainment for the masses its time. The practice of betting continued, of course, but was banned in the Middle Ages when people began to take religion very seriously. Most of them just didn’t care whether it was legal or not. Betting precedes human laws and has always managed to survive, even in times when it was frowned upon.

Horse racing as the origin of modern sports betting

There’s a reason sports betting is associated with horse racing, at least in the West. By the time horse racing became a popular pastime for the British aristocracy, sports betting was unregulated – an activity that was practiced in social circles. Nobles bet between nobles and peasants bet between peasants. During 16that and 17that For centuries horse racing bookmaking began to grow. Contrary to popular belief, it wasn’t a free activity. Instead, only horse owners were allowed to bet on private races. It was more a matter for the private horse owners’ club. But King Charles’ passion for horse racing helped keep the activity going and before you know it pub owners are promoting the races and taking bets. From there the practice spread to the rest of the world, especially the USA. British colonies like New Zealand and Canada were also forced to enact sports betting laws in the late 19th centurythat Century which shows you how popular the practice has become.

The internet has changed everything

Around 1995, websites that allowed online betting first appeared and ushered in a new era for sports betting. These websites were allowed to operate on the basis of the laws of countries like Atigua and Barbuda or Malta, which was one of the first countries to recognize the possibility of a regulated online gambling market. After that, many new platforms and concepts such as peer-to-peer betting and Betting exchanges, break the traditional concept of placing bets on events and create a unique experience for fans.


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