The oldest confirmed written mention of dominoes in China comes from the Former Events in Wulin written by the Yuan Dynasty author Zhou Mi , who listed pupai as well as dice as items sold by peddlers during the reign of Emperor Xiaozong of Song . Andrew Lo asserts that Zhou Mi meant dominoes when referring to pupai, since the Ming author Lu Rong explicitly defined pupai as dominoes .
Dominoes is a game played with rectangular domino tiles. The domino gaming pieces make up a domino set, sometimes called a deck or pack. The traditional Sino-European domino set consists of 28 dominoes, colloquially nicknamed bones, cards, tiles, tickets, stones, or spinners. Each domino is a rectangular tile with a line dividing its face into two square ends. Each end is marked with a number of spots or is blank. The backs of the dominoes in a set are indistinguishable, either blank or having some common design. A domino set is a generic gaming device, similar to playing cards or dice, in that a variety of games can be played with a set.
The earliest mention of dominoes is from Song dynasty China, found in the text Former Events in Wulin. Dominoes first appeared in Italy during the 18th century, and although it is unknown how Chinese dominoes developed into the modern game, it is speculated that Italian missionaries in China may have brought the game to Europe.
The name domino is from the resemblance to a kind of hood worn during the Venice carnival. (source : wikipedia)