It’s believed that blackjack was derived from a 16th century French game called Vingt-et-un, which translates to 21. The modern name of blackjack originated in 19th century America where gambling house owners would offer special bets called blackjack to entice new players. These special bets offered 10-to-1 odds if a player achieved a hand consisting of the ace of spades and one of the black jack cards (the jack of spades or jack of clubs). This special “black jack” bet eventually fell away, but the name Blackjack stuck around to this day.
Although the game has remained largely the same throughout it’s history, there have been a few changes to the formula over the years. In the original European style of blackjack, the dealer was dealt only one card from the start while all the other players were dealt two. The other style of the game is known as American Blackjack. In this style the dealer is dealt two cards, the same as everyone else at the blackjack table.