Article ID: CBB822246783

Juan Caramuel (1606–1682) and the Spanish Version of the Passedix Game (2019)


The game of chance called Passedix was known at least since the Middle Ages around the whole of Western Europe. It is based on the throw of three fair dice. The simplest version, for two players, consists of throwing the three dice once and summing up the numbers on the three upper faces. If this sum is greater than 10, it favours the player; if it is less than or equal to 10, it favours the opponent. A simple calculation of probabilities can show that the game is fair, in the sense of an equal probability of winning for both players. The first time we find explicit reference to this game is in an encyclopaedic work on mathematics, published in two volumes in 1667 and 1670, by the Spaniard Juan Caramuel. In this article, we describe and translate the part of this work which Caramuel dedicates to this game.

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Authors & Contributors
López Piñero, José María
Jerez Moliner, Felipe
Jullien, Dominique
Nesci, Catherine
Dollo, Corrado
Ineichen, Robert
Colorado Review of Hispanic Studies
NTM: Zeitschrift für Geschichte der Naturwissenschaften, Technik und Medizin
Bulletin of the History of Medicine
Historia Mathematica
Azogue: Revista Electrónica Dedicada al Estudio Histórico-Crítico de la Alquimia
Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies
OPVI, Organismo Público Valenciano de Investigación
University of California, Santa Barbara
W. W. Norton & Co.
Caramuel, Juan
Galilei, Galileo
Malpighi, Marcello
Moleti, Giuseppe
Tosca, Tomás Vicente
Zaragoza, José de
Time Periods
17th century
16th century
18th century
Early modern
19th century
Valencia (Spain)
Habsburg, House of

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