Archaeologists have discovered evidence that there was a 17th century underground casino in Russia. This latest find sheds light on how gamblers who lived in 17th century Russia came up with a creative way to conceal their illegal pastime.
Gambling was prohibited in Russia during the 17th century, so people who love the activity were thought to have come up with various ways on how they can still enjoy this pastime, but in secret. Peter the Great's father Tsar Alexis issued a law that prohibited all forms of gaming as he was concerned about the gambling addictions of his subjects. To make sure everyone follows the decree, he imposed brutal punishments for lawbreakers.
The unlucky ones caught gambling were either flogged or had their ears cut off, but that still didn't deter them and instead, they even came up with clever tricks.
According to the Archaeological Centre of Pskov Region, they have unearthed a wooden bench from a place situated 385 miles (620 km) west of Moscow.
The bench had a carving on it, and the archaeologists believe it to be a game called alquerque.
The game, which resembles an early version of draughts (checkers), was very popular in Russia during that era, alongside chess.
If ever a raid occurred on the "underground casino", people would simply sit down on the bench or place a cloth to conceal it. Doing so ruins the game but will save them from prosecution. To support their claim, the archaeologists said that they have found many chips for this game last year.