History & Evolution of Rummy
Rummy is a game which is loved by almost all card game enthusiasts in India. The truth is that a major chunk of the card lovers do not know the exact origin and evolution of their favourite card game. We took some time to do a deep research on the topic and we decided to share the details with you.
To start with, there are many theories on the origin of Rummy but we are sharing the ones that we think are authentic. The origin of the card game is a bit hard and there are many claims made on the origin of rummy. Below are some of the major theories:
Theory of Spanish Origin
The connection of rummy with Spanish communities is backed by the resemblance of the game to the Spanish card game 'Conquian'. Many researchers believe that there are origin is also associated with Mexico and there are other theorists who states that the Spanish communities migrated to the west has spread the popularity of the game. There are also claims on the origin of the game being in America and then it was spread across Mexico and named Conquian.
John Scarne Theory
John Scarne was a famous card magician and had profound knowledge on cards and their origin. In one of his books, Scarne states that the game of rummy was formed from the poker variant known as 'Whiskey Poker'. He says that the name was evolved to 'Rum Poker' and then to 'Rum' and finally 'Rummy'. There are many other card researchers and theorists who believe that the game was derived from the game of Poker.
Theory of Chinese Origin
According to David Parlett, the famous games scholar who has specialized in card games and board games also suggests that 'Conquian' is ancestral to all rummy card games. The Conquian is believed to be originated from the Chinese game known as 'Khanhoo' and 'Mah Jong'. There are also theories which also connect it to the Japanese game of 'Hanafuda'.
The different variants of rummy show the evolution that the game has undergone. There are many popular variation of the game that is played in different parts of the world. The Indian version is the 13 card variant which is popularly known as Indian Rummy.