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Big Ben bingo

Bingo: The Beano of Contemporary Lotto game

Bingo is one of the most exciting and simplest games of chance played worldwide dependent to the player's stroke of luck. It is traced back from Italy and patterned after Lo Gluoco del Lotto d'Italia during the 1500s. The game is organized by the Italian National Lottery and has been played daily without recess until the present time.

In 1778, the French press issued a press statement about Le Lotto as one of the favorite game of the masses and has captured their interest in this game of chance. The traditional version of Lotto, developed during this era, make use of a playing card with three horizontal rows and nine vertical columns. The playing card is a matrix of numbers and blank squares in random array. The vertical columns hold the numbers 1 to 90 randomly arranged in the game card. Lotto cards have random numbers distinct from each other. This is to ensure that no two or more identical cards will come out during the game. Players secure a Lotto card and wait for the caller to call out the number inscribed in small wooden tokens. These numbered wooden tokens, numbered from 1 to 90, were drawn from a cloth bag. As each number is called, players will cover their cards if the called number is present in their cards. The first one to cover a horizontal row is declared winner of the game.

After its inception as a popular game of chance, many versions of the Lotto game were introduced to the public. In the 1800s, the educational edition of the Lotto game became very popular and well-accepted by parents, students and other educational institutions. Different variations of this educational lotto game were launched in the market. Some of these include "Spelling Lotto", "Animal Lotto", and "Historical Lotto". These variations teach children with educational knowledge such as counting and recognizing numbers, the alphabet, and historical data. All of these are printed in the squares of the lotto cards in lieu of the original numbers.

In the evening of December 1929, the word "bingo" was inadvertently called out by a winning beano player. Beano is an offshoot of the lotto game by employing a game card and dried beans to cover the numbers called out. Edwin Lowe, a businessman, was in a carnival when the a game of beano was played. He took the idea with him to New York and introduced it to his friends as the new game of bingo. Games were regularly played with bets and introduction of new winning patterns in the bingo cards. Lowe's bingo game turned into an overnight success and everyone were shouting bingo as soon as they completed a winning pattern in their cards. Bingo players still get the same excitement and fun from this game of card and dried beans.