The Game of Dominoes


The game of dominoes is a family of tile-based games that is played by placing dominoes on the table. Each domino is a tile with two square ends, marked with a number of spots. A player begins by placing one domino at a time and attempting to eliminate all of the dominoes on the table.


The Rules of Domino are a set of rules for a traditional board game. The basic aim is to create an enclosed space – a cell – that covers half of the domino tiles. For every cell created, a player scores one point. In addition to the basic rules, the game features many different scoring variations.

Origins in France

The game of dominoes is believed to have originated in Italy in the early eighteenth century and was later introduced to Austria, southern Germany, and France. By the mid-18th century, it had become a popular game in France, and the word domino was first recorded in the 1771 Dictionnaire de Trevoux. However, the word domino has more than one meaning, and has also been used to refer to two different things. One of its earlier meanings was that of a crude woodcut worn by French peasants, and the other relates to a mask worn by soldiers.

Variations on the game in the West

There are a number of variations of the game domino in the West. In the traditional version, the game is played anti-clockwise. Each turn consists of playing a domino, extending one bone of its set. The other players must have matching ends, or else the player will lose his turn. If no player can play, the next player takes his turn.

Origins in pubs

The origins of Domino in pubs can be traced back to the 14th century, when players would play the game on the ground and later on tables. Players would throw a ring onto a bull’s horn affixed to the wall. Later, plastic Dominoes were introduced into pubs.

Variations on the game in the U.S.

There are many variations on the basic game of domino in the U.S., including variations that allow players to play off the sides or ends of doubles. For example, the player with the highest double leads with a double six. The next player may lead with a double five or four. If a player plays the same number on both sides of the chain, the other player is said to have “stitched up” the ends.