October 29 2008
The History of Golf
The game of golf has grown to be one of the world’s most popular sports today. Its history goes back to the 1300s when a game resembling golf was played with a stick and ball.
The origin of golf is a great debate between the Scottish and the English. In England, there is a stained glass window in the Gloucester Cathedral of a man resembling a golfer. This is what the English claim to be their undeniable proof that golfing is a sport that they invented. On the other hand, the Scottish believe that the game of golf was their finding because of the rich history it has contributed.
In 1457, golf was banned in Scotland because it was said to interfere with archery practice. King James IV was the ruler at that time and was part of the conspiracy to ban the sport in 1491. Just ten short years later, he became a loyal player of the game. In 1651, other heads of Scotland gave their royal consent for the game to be played freely throughout the region.
Slowly but surely, golf became a very popular sport. By the early 1700s, golfing became more organized. Clubs and organizations began to form. The world’s oldest golf club is the Royal Burgess Golfing Society of Edinburgh. It was formed in 1735. Others include the Edinburgh Golfing Society and the Gentlemen Golfers of Edinburgh. These organizations were the first to set rules and regulations for this most prestigious game.
The number of holes on the courses was a largely disputed issue in the beginning. Some clubs played with five holes while others would play as many as twenty-two holes. In 1764, it was agreed that there would be 18 holes.
In the mid 1700s, golf began to spread to other areas and countries. A club was formed in England in 1766, and in 1856 the first club of France was formed. In 1888, the St. Andrews club in New York helped bring popularity to the game of golf in the United States, and...