Blackjack Idols
Edward O. Thorp - Maestro of Blackjack

The world of blackjack is impossible to imagine without the name of one more blackjack guru and master, the father of card counting at blackjack, the member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame, the professor of mathematics – Edward O. Thorp.

What is he famous for?

This person has a rich biography which clearly shows his wide experience as a professor of mathematics and finance; he worked at different universities such as M.I.T (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) for example, known also by another considerable figure of blackjack – MIT Blackjack Team.

The year of 1962 was commemorated by the book Beat the Dealer: Edward O. Thorp destroyed the myth of impossibility to beat a casino out of great money. Using mathematics and his own mind, Thorp described different blackjack strategies which gave a chance to any ordinary gambler to improve his skills of playing and learn how to win at blackjack.  Beat the Dealer had become an American bestseller at once, and now the name of Edward O. Thorp was associated with the game of blackjack.

To check the effectiveness of his counting system, Thorp used it by himself at Lake Tahoe, Reno and Las Vegas casinos first: certainly, he worked not alone but with a professional gambler, whose name was Manny Kimmel. After winning $ 11000 for one weekend, professor Thorp has understood that his theory and mathematical methods of playing blackjack really worked; thanks to such amazing and quick wining, the name of Thorp became very known among blackjack gamblers. The father of card counting became a real threat for casinos because of his books which helped many gamblers to become professionals.

Anyway, Beat the Dealer was not so easy to understand for ordinary gamblers at first, because it was difficult for average players to use Thorp’s theory at casinos. But the second edition of the book (in the year of 1966) became the more practical variant of Beat the Dealer: Thorp had written it with the assistance of Julian Braun.

Edward O. Thorp is known not only because of his book Beat the Dealer: he is the author of other works, such as:

  • The Mathematics of Gambling
  • Beat the Market
  • Elementary Probability

Dr. Thorp is the author of many different articles which are considered to be the best blackjack achievements today.

He is known not only as a writer but also an inventor of the first device to win at roulette: he has invented it in 1961 together with Claud Shannon.

In 2003, Edward O. Thorp, together with other 6 blackjack celebrities which are considered to be the historical personalities of blackjack today, has become the member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame for his contribution to this popular card game.