Influence de l’Esprit Aleatoire sur L’Économie Politique et Sociale, Trente-et-Quarante Dévoilé.

Influence of the Aleatory Spirit on the Political and Social Economy, Trente-et-Quarante Unveiled; with manuscript annotations

Still popular today in France, Italy, and Monaco—and within other casinos of Continental Europe—Trente et Quarante (Thirty and Forty), i.e., Rouge et Noir (Red and Black), is a French gambling card game that requires a special betting table.

This rare gambling work, with only two known copies in America and one in France, is divided into two parts, nine chapters in all. In the first part, the author muses about the role of chance in revolutions and civilizations and refers to his own experiences in Egypt. The second part of almost 90 pages, the majority of the work, demonstrates the author’s primary concern: successfully playing and gambling on the game of Trente et Quarante.

The text includes 10 tables of exercises describing 7,300 coups or “hands” of play. Pencil annotations, likely contemporary, on these tables and additionally scattered throughout the text give evidence of its actual use as a gambling guide.

The annotations include mathematical calculations, marks added to graphs and figures, and, in one instance, an algebraic formula.

Author J. Jouet de Lanciduais also wrote, in the same year as this title, 1859, a player’s guide on the game of Trente et Quarante (and also roulette)—Guide de Jouer à la Roulette et au Trente-et-Quarante, ou la Chance…, promising to defeat chance by calculation. The work was based on his extensive experience (over 200,000 hands) playing the game at various casinos.

Noted as “Hargrave 1859” within A History of Playing Cards and a Bibliography of Cards and Gaming (1930), p388.

Description: Influence de l’Esprit Aleatoire sur L’Économie Politique et Sociale, Trente-et-Quarante Dévoilé.

Paris: Chez E. Dentu, Libraire-Éditeur, 1859. First Edition. [3], [1]–162, [1 (errata)]pp., untrimmed. 8vo. Publisher’s printed blue wraps. Pencil annotations, likely contemporary, throughout including mathematical and algebraic calculations. Wraps soiled, one separated; spine perished; sewing so loosened as to be almost disbound, else good.


OCLC: University of Kansas, University of Nevada at Las Vegas, BNF. Hargrave 1859.

Price: $650.00

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