A New Interpretation of Cardano’s De Ludo Aleae.Successes and failures

Mary Sol de Mora Charles
Departamento de Filosofía
UPV/EHU, San Sebastián
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  • Abstract
    Girolamo Cardano (1501-1576) wrote the Liber de Ludo Aleae (Book on Games of Chance) sometime in the mid sixteenth-century, although it was not published until 1663. What Cardano offers in the De Ludo Aleae is a theoretical consideration of outcomes in games involving dice and cards. From a careful reading of the book it is possible to see how Cardano went about considering the probabilities of various outcomes, including their mistakes as well as the successful results. Among the examples he uses is a game he calls fritillum, the meaning of which will be considered from its use in the Roman World as a cup for throwing dice to a chess board and to the game fritillum. This should be the new contribution of this paper.
  • Keywords: dice; games of chance; points; equality; fritillum.
  • AMS Subject classifications: 01A40, 60A99, 91A60.