Gambling has always been a part of the Greek culture for as long as the history books go. In ancient times, betting was mainly on coin-tossing and dice games. Old statues and paintings indicate the first forms of sports betting, which were bets on racing competitions and fighting games. The betting process was rather rudimentary, with most wagers being exchange bets. Mythological stories indicate that even the Greek gods used to gamble. For example, Pan and Hermes are believed to have placed wagers as Hades, Zeus, and Poseidon decided to draw straws to determine how to split the world.
The advent of new games and laws
As gambling advanced in Greece, newer games were introduced, becoming popular. A good example is Par Impar Ludere. This game involved a person holding small sheep bones and the opponent guessing whether the number of bones was even or odd. As money became the main exchange currency, the bones were replaced with coins, and the winning person would keep all the coins.
Eventually, gambling laws were introduced to control the industry as many people became victims of gambling addiction. At some point, laws were introduced to prohibit all forms of gambling. In 1958, new laws were formed. The laws permitted gambling but only under strict state control. The Greek Organization of Football Prognostics, owned by the state, had a monopoly on the betting industry until the 2000s. In 2008, the organization experienced a financial crisis and sold part of the company shares to private citizens. Around that time, online sports betting also came about in Greece, which became popular quite fast.
Key historical changes
The main change in the Greece gambling industry occurred during the early 2000s. That was when online gambling was introduced and became popular quite fast. The online sports betting platforms gave more punters opportunities to wager on their favorite sport, including leagues played on different continents. It also made the betting process easier and more credible, provided punters choose the right betting sites.