The History of Football

football-historyWell it is a good start to know about history about football as the biggest fans all over the world and played by many people all over the world. Some people can have some different opinions and information, so we tried to find something and make this information and explanation simple from some inspirators and sources.

( 2500 BC ) Han Dynasty forebear of football was called Tsu’ Chu and it consisted of kicking a leather ball filled with feathers and hair through an opening, measuring only 30-40cm in width, into a small net fixed onto long bamboo canes. According to one variation of this exercise, the player was not permitted to aim at his target unimpeded, but had to use his feet, chest, back and shoulder.

( 300 – 100 BC )Football (as well as rugby and soccer) are believed to have descended from the ancient Greek game of harpaston. Harpaston is mentioned frequently in classical literature, where it is often referred to as a “very rough and brutal game“. The rules of this ancient sport were quite simple: Points were awarded when a player would cross a goal line by either kicking the ball, running with it across the goal line, or throwing it across the line to another player. The other team’s objective was simply to stop them by any means possible.There was no specific field length, no side line boundaries, no specified number of players per team, only a glaring lack of rules.

( 600 – 1600 ) Aztehcs played a game called Tiachli, played in a capital shape court, a ring either end about between 8 and 10ft high and 30cm diameter, the purpose was to score in the opposing goal, and the first team to do was the winner. A pretty tough ask made tougher as the rules stated that they couldn’t use their hands and the ball was not allowed to touch the floor. Despite having shin guards and helmets to protect the players from injuries from the heavy rubber ball, the losing Captain in true Aztec style would be sacrificed to the gods for their defeat.

In the 17th Century the Native American’s Further north in modern day USA played a game called ‘Pasuckuakohowog’., a very violent game that could last for hours or even days with teams up to 500 strong. Players would cover up with disguises as not to be recognized afterwards for fear of retribution.

Evolution and the Beginnings of Standardization

Mob football, as it was dubbed has been played in England since The Roman occupation between 43 and 410 AD. Many variations of this game existed but common denominators such as a mob and a ball as with the title were forever present, the objective is that each team had to get the ball to the oppositions area by whatever means possible.

It is believed after the Norman conquering of the isles the mob game really took off and as early as 1314 Nicolas de Farndone (The Lord Mayor of the City of London) banned the game from the city streets due to the violence and crime that surrounded the events, a national ban was introduced in 1314 on April 30th by King Edward II and further proclaimed by his successor in June 12th 1342 by imaginatively named Edward the III. The reason for this was that is distracted the young men from involvement in archery and other useful war skills, punishment for participation would be imprisonment. A year later Scotland introduced the ‘Football Act’ and with it a fine of ‘Four Pence’, which I’m sure was a lot of money at a time, to discourage the people.

There are many references to the game in the medieval and renaissance eras from kings to great writers. The infamous King Henry VIII owned a pair of boots, but also backed the continued banning of the game in 1548 as it was often the source of many riots and acts of crime. The people love of playing the game thought made this impossible so it continued without authority.

In 1608 William Shakespeare disapprovingly coined the word football in his play ‘King Lear” “Nor tripped neither, you base football player.” And again in the ‘A Comedy of Errors’, penned this sonner.

In 1500 Italian Form Calcio started, still played today in Florence.

At Rugby school in 1823 playing a game of football William Webb Ellis sat on a football, misshaped it, picked it up and ran with it to the opponent’s goal and became the defining moment in separation of Football and Rugby.

Football didn’t really begin to take on any consistency of rules and boundaries until it was picked up as a sport in the seven major public schools of England in the early 1800’s. Six of the seven schools were largely playing the same game (including Eton, Harrow and Winchester) – while the seventh, Rugby School (founded in 1567) was playing a markedly different version of football.

The other schools moved ahead refining their rules and eventually their game became known as “association football” – or soccer, which was played back then much as it is today.

The pace of growth in football saw a real explosion in participation and watching of games occurred half way through the nineteenth century when the factory workers act of 1850 was passed, before this act the working classes and their children were expected to work 6 days a week for 12 hours a day. Leaving a little time for any recreational activity, what the act provided after 1850 was a half-day working on Saturdays finishing at 2pm for the first time young men had the opportunity to enjoy free time in the afternoon and was the driving force behind the popular Saturday 3pm kick off time which lasted nearly 150 years before live television coverage demanded staggered match times.

In 1885 Sheffield Football Club was born, this is now considered the world oldest football club. (Revision : Notts County Football Club 1862)

It wasn’t until October 26th 1863, at the Freemasons Tavern (now arms), 13 Teams from the London area sat the first set of 6 meetings trying to combine all the codes and rules that teams The Football Association (FA) was born.

Prepared and compiled by -HR-

 

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