But the story of the ancient games that may or may not have had something to do with the modern codes is a fascinating one, and this book explores each of them in detail, drawing on the very latest research while re-examining the original sources to dispel a number of misconceptions and presenting plenty of surprises along the way!
The 'true' story of football's ancient origins looks not at what we think we know, but what we know we know. Could football really have started as a fertility rite or with ancient head kicking cults? What is the real story behind the games played by pre-Columbian Americans, Aboriginal Australasians, the Ancient Chinese, the Romans, the Vikings, the Celts and many other cultures? And how much did they really have to do with the way football is played today?
Sport and history combine to tell an intriguing story as we explore the medieval folk games, the school traditions and the earliest clubs that played football long before it was ever standardised into the modern forms of soccer, rugby union, rugby league, and Gaelic, Australian, American and Canadian football.
From William Web Ellis picking up a soccer ball and single handedly inventing the game of rugby to Melbournian settlers adapting Gaelic football to an Aboriginal game called marngrook it can be hard to separate myth from reality. Which is precisely what this book does..
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