History of Golf

Topics: Golf, Golf ball, Golf club Pages: 3 (1044 words) Published: April 10, 2007
There is general agreement that the Scots were the earliest of golf addicts but who actually invented the game is open to debate. We know that golf has existed for at least 500 years because James II of Scotland, in an Act of Parliament dated March 6, 1457, had golf and football banned because these sports were interfering too much with archery practice sorely needed by the loyal defenders of the Scottish realm! It has been suggested that bored shepherds tending flocks of sheep near St. Andrews became adept at hitting rounded stones into rabbits holes with their wooden crooks. And so a legend that persists to this day was born! Various forms of games resembling golf were played as early as the fourteenth century by sportsmen in Holland, Belgium and France as well as in Scotland. But it was a keen Scottish Baron, James VI, who brought the game to England when he succeeded to the English throne in 1603. For many years the game was played on rough terrain without proper greens, just crude holes cut into the ground where the surface was reasonably flat! Early golfers played at the game for many years without any thought of forming a society or club until finally a group of Edinburgh golfers in 1744 formed a club called the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers. At this time, the first rules of golf, 13 in all, were drawn up for an annual competition between sportsmen from any part of Great Britain and Ireland. A few years later the Society of St. Andrews Golfers was formed and in 1834, when King William IV became the Society's patron, the title was changed to the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews. The earliest clubs formed outside of Scotland was the Royal Blackheath Golf Club of England which came into existence in 1766, followed by the Old Manchester Golf Club founded on the Kersal Moor in 1818. 18th century golf in the United States, while known to exist, did not catch on and it was in Canada that golf first established firm roots in North America. The...
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