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The Bonanza In Blackjack Bonanza

Jul 10, 2014

blackjack-bonanza-history-BJC2-090714Bonanza? Bonanza!

The word Bonanza has been used on ancient seaways and down the deepest mines, we look at why.

So let’s take a closer look at the word “Bonanza”. Now more than a few of you upon seeing the word alone don’t instantly think of blackjack cards but the saddles and steers of the wild west, but it has a deeper significance than that, one that stems from its ancient use in medieval Latin.

Most frequently used, one suspects, by hardy sailor types in hope and prayer whilst on the cruel sea, this Latin expression was part of vulgar slang and combined “bonus” (meaning good) and “malacia” (meaning calm sea) into an expression perhaps akin today to fair weather. Although it would probably have to be said quite gruffly to fully convey the sentiment.

This term was later used by the Spanish as bonanza to mean both the original “fair weather” but also for a rich vein or strike in mining. At which point a sailor happened to be down a mine and pass on this term of good fortune and luck is not made clear by history, none the less that mining association stuck.

A bonanza still means the point at which two mother lodes intersect in mining and because of the obvious potential in such a find it has come not just to mean wealth of a mine but also the mining of wealth. It is now applied to anything from which can be expected high rates of return or a large sudden income.

The television connection

Of course all of that doesn’t even begin to shake the dust from the cowboy boots of Bonanza’s major association. The Tv show might have featured ranchers, cattle and a goodly collection of stereotypes, to rival the two dimensional nature of free online blackjack games but it was nonetheless popular enough to run for 430 episodes over 14 seasons and was only ever slightly overshadowed by the even longer running Gunsmoke.

This association with the Cartwright family’s struggles shouldn’t be overlooked as the underlying theme of the show was one of multi-layered positivity, whether it was in guise of the widowed father with three sons from three wives and how they cared for each other, or the overall success of the ranch as a business.

The unconscious association with this story of success, not to mention the archetypal cowboy, is of course likely to be strong with the demographic group that grew up on Lorne Greene’s acting. These popular culture hooks are seen by modern marketing as akin to gold dust as memories are typically hardwired.

The other association from the TV series is the zeitgeist of the wild west, the spirit of the age, the sense of open horizons and opportunities in a land of stetsons, spurs and saloons. It is perhaps in these saloons that the words would first be uttered within proximity of each other.

The Wild Wild West

The link between wild west and mining is nearly as strong as between cowboys and indians in terms of connotative recollection creation and fostering. The “old mine” stereotype is almost as prevalent across popular culture with references in everything from “The Treasure of Sierra Madre” to episodes of Lassie.

Again in all these cases the word bonanza is subconsciously linked with stories of smart strategies, success and wealth, the discovery of hidden riches and the rescue of small boys from places they shouldn’t have been in the first place. It is these constant reinforcing references throughout both our childhood and adult lives which mean we all know what the mother lode is, but very few of us are miners.

Whilst the saloons of the old west were full of gun totting poker players, craps cheaters and guys winning at blackjack, the association is still a positive one since the guy in the white hat always won, and rode off into the sunset with his saddlebags full of gold.

Bet365 Casino is, therefore, in its use of Blackjack Bonanza, not only alluding to a situation of possible suddenly increased personal wealth, but also the overall atmosphere of opportunity and good fortune. The origins might have been all at sea, but these days the fair weather is, likely as not, to be found on the Internet rather than anywhere near a fishing net.

Read more about where Blackjack Bonanza came from.


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