How did the game of Poker get its name?

Poker is believed to have its origins in 11th Century China.

The earliest recorded mention of it in the west was in Louisiana in the early 19th Century.  In 1834, it was being played on the Mississippi riverboats, where it was known as the ‘cheating game’.

A few years later it became known as Poker.

It derives its name from either the 18th Century French game, ‘poque’ or the German game ‘pochspiel’.

There are however, other possible derivations – the best of which is that it came from the slang word ‘poke’ meaning money – pickpockets used to relieve victims of their ‘poke’.

In light of this meaning, maybe you should be a little wary when someone ‘pokes’ you on Facebook 🙂