Do you have a lucky number? We have several. Do they drop in for us on the roulette table? Well, we like to think they do, but to be honest, we have never done a scientific analysis of it.
Numbers play an important part in all cultures. In the west, the number 7 is lucky and the number 13 is seen as unlucky, for example, whereas in Chinese cities, buildings often don't have a fourth floor as that number is seen as unlucky. The roulette number 8, in contrast, is seen as very lucky in China. Numbers that add up to 8 like the number 26 are also seen as lucky (it also sounds a bit like "easy profitable" in Cantonese.)
That's what this section is all about. We are going to run though all of the numbers on a roulette wheel (bear with us, there are 37 of them), and we'll explore whether the number has any specific meaning in different cultures and we'll list some interesting facts and stories associated with it.
Is this one of those roulette tips that will help you pick a winner on a single number bet? Well, no, but it'll be fun anyway. And it might help you pick the number. Who knows? It might be the winner, but we're not going to claim any credit for it even though we are a bit superstitious.
Numbers have long held a fascination for cultures around the world. They seem to be the building blocks of the universe and somewhere in there is the answer to that age old question "what makes the universe tick?"
Numbers are not numerals by the way. Numerals are symbols used to represent numbers.
So the Romans, for example, used "V" for 5 and "X" for 10. Natural numbers (numbers that you use for counting) are the ones you'll find on a roulette wheel. For most of history, the natural numbers began with 1 and then in the 19th century, mathematicians included 0. 00 has never been used in maths by the way!
The Main Types of Numbers
Please bear in mind that the roulette odds of all the numbers on the wheel are the same. We are not suggesting otherwise as they all take up the same amount of space on the wheel (well, if the wheel is biased or is imperfect they may not all be equal, but the difference will be very very small). That being said, let's continue.....
Mathematicians talk of integers, which are whole numbers (not fractions) that can be positive, negative, or zero. So all of the numbers in roulette are integers, apart from the 00 which is a special that you only see in roulette.
One of the most popular bets on the roulette wheel is the even/odd bet, an outside even money bet. And this is one of the main classifications of numbers generally. An even number is can be divided two to give a natural number (i.e. one that is not a fraction or does not have a decimal point- which would be a real number). The rest are odd numbers. 0 is a special case of course. Actually, it is not really. It passes the even number test easily- so it is even. (I guess we get confused due to history. The Greeks didn't even consider that 0 was a number).
Any number that can be split into 2 to make another whole number is even. If you halve zero, you get zero, so it passes this test.
Also, the neighbours of even numbers have odd numbers either side of them. Zero also passes this one - minus one and one sit either side of it.
A quick video from the Khan Academy explaining Prime Numbers.
A prime number is an integer greater than 1 that you cannot make by multiplying together two smaller whole numbers. Prime numbers have fascinated people for thousands of years.
As the Khan Academy says, prime numbers have been studied by mathematicians and mystics for a long time. They are both basic and mysterious. The more you learn about them, the more you discover that the universe is a fascinating place. The video above is from the Khan Academy and is an introduction to the magic of prime numbers.
The following is a list of the prime numbers on a roulette wheel: 2, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 17, 19, 23, 29, 31. Here is a list of the first 1000 prime numbers- it might give you some inspiration on those straight up bets!
They are often popular roulette bets, as they are seen as "magic" numbers, but of course that may be just hocus-pocus. The lucky number 17, in particular, has featured in some pretty famous roulette bets such as Mike Ashley's £1.3 million roulette win on a single spin.
There are many other interesting sub-sets of numbers, including Fibonacci numbers (which forms the base of a famous roulette system) and perfect numbers. A prefect number hat is a perfect number?
A perfect number is a whole number, (greater than zero) that you can make by adding up all the factors of the number. (Factors are numbers you multiply together to get that number, so the factors of 6 are 1,2,3 and 6.
!+2+3 = 6, so 6 is a perfect number as you can make it by adding together all of its factors.
28 is also a perfect number as it's factors are 1, 2, 4, 7, 14 and 28. Add together its factors lower than the actual number and you get 28.
So on a roulette wheel, there are 2 perfect numbers, 6 and 28. Incidentally, some people avoid these numbers because they superstitiously believe that to be that perfect is somehow unlucky. And 6 is seen as unlucky anyway in some cultures, due to religious reasons, but more on that later.
Interesting, hey? I bet you never knew that mathematics could be so fun! Especially if it helps you find your winning number. We hope we find your lucky roulette number!
1 + 2 + 4 + 7 + 14 = 28