The end of the second millennium is characterised by a declining popularity of bridge apart that is... from a group of enthusiasts who eagerly practice the game in their organisations. But organisations as is usually the case ossify in time – they become the guardians of a strictly worked out and pale ortho­doxy; regulations, laws, instructions, restrictions and such boring de­tails. Furthermore they persuaded them­selves and others that theirs is a „higher form of bridge”. In fact bridge is a very old game and once upon a time was practiced in a manner more simple, more pleasent and at the same time more interesting.

 

       

The beginnings of bridge are lost in the shades of prehistory. It does not appear that prof. Turlantani was right in observing on the rock paintings in Libenia mam­moth hunters playing with flintstone cards. Equally it is quite improbable that the famous frescoes found in the temple in Karajangaratho depict four aliens who, ac­cording to Dueniken, are playing in a contract of  1 No Trump. Let us then restrict ourselves to the well documented beginnings of bridge.

     

5000 years ago there were a people living in the delta of the Tigris and the Euphra­tis, Summerians, who found out that what is said can also be written; and since they had nothing better to hand, began to write on clay tablets which after baking were easily preserved. Thousands upon thousands of these tablets were only just recently dug up in our times and amongst these they also found bridge cards!

From Summeria bridge drifted to Egypt, Phoenicia, Crete, Greece and finally... 

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