Who Invented The Roulette Wheel?

Even the best stories begin with a single chapter and the immensely popular game of roulette began with the invention of the wheel. Today, we can play it in any brick-and-mortar casino, or regular game parlor and it is at the cornerstone of online casinos’ portfolios. You don’t need to be a gambling buff to know that roulette is not a new game, but one that was invented many centuries ago. It was a huge hit right from the start and as a result, it changed a little over the years.

Blaise Pascal invents the little wheel

French speakers probably know that roulette means little wheel and this is the name chosen by Blaise Pascal for its creation. The mathematician wasn’t particularly interested in gambling and he had different things in mind when he inadvertently invented the roulette wheel. His goal was to create a perpetual motion machine, something that he wasn’t successful at. On the bright side, his diligent efforts led to the creation of a game of chance that pass the test of time and became modern roulette.

Some people might argue that Pascal was not the first one to invent the roulette wheel. They would point at hints offered by ancient civilizations such as the Chinese, Romans, and Greeks. Archaeologists have unveiled various wheels created by ancient people, some of them allegedly used for gambling. The Chinese would resort to animal figurines, while the Greeks and Romans had different approaches. However, none of these games have endured or morphed into roulette.

A simple game destined for greatness

Sometimes the most basic games are the most popular and this is particularly true when we think of online roulette which can be playing online for free with websites like — The game has basic rules that are easy to learn and master even for people who have no previous experience with online gambling. If you haven’t played roulette before, you will be able to learn the ropes in a matter of minutes and have the same chances as a veteran.

The early versions of roulette were not very different from the games we play today. The reason some of the rules were changed and the roulette wheel was tweaked was to give casinos a better chance. A shining example is the addition of the second zero slot, which increases the house edge significantly. Commonly referred to as American roulette, the game was played in Europe for decades, especially in Monte Carlo where it was the most popular game at the tables.

An important moment for roulette was the crossing of the English Channel and later the Atlantic Ocean. This made it popular on both sides of the Atlantic and ensured its worldwide success for centuries to come. Americans didn’t feel the need to further amend the rules and the game also remained unchanged in Europe. Online casinos have brought sweeping changes to many games, yet they only make modest modifications to roulette.