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The Gaming Clubs

Volume I

The Gaming Table by Andrew Steinmetz, Volume II

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The Gaming Clubs

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Casino Gambling in history


White's Club seems to have won the darkest reputation for
gambling. Lord Lyttleton, writing to Dr Doddridge, in 1750,
says:--'The Dryads of Hogley are at present pretty secure, but I
tremble to think that the rattling of a dice-box at White's may
one day or other (if my son should be a member of that noble
academy) shake down all our fine oaks. It is dreadful to see,
not only there, but almost in every house in the town, what
devastations are made by that destructive fury, the spirit of
play.' A fact stated by Walpole to Horace Mann shows the
character of the company at this establishment:--'There is a man
about town, Sir William Burdett, a man of very good family, but
most infamous character. In short, to give you his character at
once--there is a wager in the bet-book at White's (a MS. of which
I may one day or other give you an account), that the first
baronet that will be hanged is this Sir William Burdett.' Swift
says:--'I have heard that the late Earl of Oxford, in the time of
his ministry, never passed by White's chocolate-house (the common
rendezvous of infamous sharpers and noble cullies) without
bestowing a curse upon that famous academy as the bane of half
the English nobility.'

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