Speaking of the history of Rummy, the game that has taken India by storm completely of late, there is no credible evidence available establishing the authenticity of the same. However, it is generally believed that the Mexican game of Conquian is the father of all Rummy games. It is also alleged, however, that Conquian, as the game was called earlier, was first invented in America before moving to Mexico. There is another theory which links its origin to Spain which again alleges that the game moved to West, thanks to Spanish people when they migrated there. However, both the theories are in agreement when it comes to establishing the nomenclature of the game which prevailed in the past and that is called Conquian.
History of Conquian:
Though the history of Conquian dates to several hundred years (400 to be precise), having assumed the form of Rummy, it is still seen dominating online games in India, leading every other game by quite a distance. The reason behind its ever-increasing popularity is because it is getting played in different variations. And why not? Before descending in India, it has travelled so many countries and has attained many transformations in the process.
Let us further discuss as to how the game has evolved over the years being played in various places across the world.
The Poker connection:
There is a belief that the 13-card game of Rummy is devised as a form of Poker. Since Poker is also a game of forming sequences, at hindsight, this theory appears to be true and perhaps is a fact too. In fact, Rummy itself is named after Rum poker – one of the varieties of Poker, as per John Scarne, a famous author on card games.
Contrary to all the popular beliefs on the authenticity of the origin of Rummy, all of which pointing out to either Europe or North America, there is a school of thought which indicates its Asian connection too. There used to be a card game called Mah Jongg in China thousand years ago having the same pick and discard style as that of Rummy and so some people claim that the game has originated in China. In the 19th century, the same game assumed other names like Khanhoo and Kon Khin and was widely popular in China. So, the game of Rummy may have had its Asian connection and thus must have migrated to India easily.
Thus, there is no foolproof indication clearly suggesting the origin of this game. But one thing is clear. The game is several hundred years old and had its roots in many parts of the world, before making a significant impact in India.