Saturday, June 28, 2008

The mysterious origins of tennis

With Wimbledon upon us it seemed like a good time to take a look at the origins of tennis and it's strange scoring system. After possibly originating in France, the game eventually made its way to England where, apparently, King Henry VIII invented the 'service' - his servants used to throw the ball up in the air for him because he was too fat to do it himself. Good times. Learn more here.

From my reading this suggests tennis players were just degenerate gamblers. Okay, 'degenerate' might be a little harsh, but the sport was generally played for money and the gambling terms came to define the scoring system.

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