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Backgamn is a two-player board game played with counters and dice on tables boards. It is the most widespread Western member of the large family of tables games, whose ancestors date back nearly 5,000 years to the regions of Mesopotamia and Persia. The earliest record of backgammon itself dates to 17th-century England, being descended from the 16th-century game of Irish.[2]

Backgammon is a two-player game of contrary movement in which each player has fifteen pieces known traditionally as men (short for ‘tablemen’), but increasingly known as ‘checkers’ in the US in recent decades, analogous to the other board game of Checkers. The backgammon table pieces move along twenty-four ‘points‘ according to the roll of two dice. The objective of the game is to move the fifteen pieces around the board and be first to bear off, i.e., remove them from the board. The achievement of this while the opponent is still a long way behind results in a triple win known as a backgammon, hence the name of the game.


Contrary to popular belief, backgammon is not the oldest board game in the world, nor are all tables games variants of backgammon. In fact, the earliest known mention of backgammon was in a letter dated 1635, when it was emerging as a variant of the popular mediaeval Anglo-Scottish game of Irish; the latter was described as a better game.[3] By the 19th century, however, backgammon had spread to Europe, where it rapidly superseded other tables games like Trictrac in popularity, and also to America, where the doubling cube was introduced. In other parts of the world, different tables games such as Nard or Nardy are better known.

Tables games

Main article: Tables game

Backgammon is a recent member of the large family of tables games that date back to ancient times. The following is an overview of their development up to the time when backgammon appeared on the scene.

This work © 2023 by Wikipedia is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

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