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All you need to know about the game of Dominoes

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    Dominoes was invented by the Chinese in the 14th Century but the first recorded reference in Europe is from Italy where the game was played in the courts of Venice and Naples. The tiles were originally constructed by gluing and pinning two sheets of ebony on either side of the bone tile. This prevented cheating by being able to see the pip value from the back of the tile in certain lights. It also served to produce nice contrasting white pips on black background by allowing the bone to show through holes in the ebony. The pin through the middle of the tile became known as the "spinner", for obvious reasons. .

    Although domino tiles are clearly of Chinese inheritance, there is debate over whether the game played by Europeans was brought by the Chinese to Europe in the eighteenth century or, in fact, was invented independently. European dominoes are shorter than Chinese ones and there is a single tile for each permutation of the throw of two dice or a blank making a total of twenty-eight tiles. This is the standard or "double-six" set and, as in China, various games can be played with it. Double-twelve sets (91 tiles) are popular in America and Double-nine sets (55 tiles) also exist.

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