While the origin of mahjong (麻將, má jiàng), along called mah-jongg in the US, is unknown, the fast-paced four-player game is popular throughout Asia. The game was first sold in the US in the 1920s and has become popular in the last decade. Mahjong is often played as a gambling game; therefore, mahjong was banned after 1949 in China but reintroduced after the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976).
There are variations in mahjong game play from country to country. Many mahjong sets contain 136 or 144 tiles. There are 16 rounds in a game with a winner after each round. Learn how to play one common version (based on 136 tiles).