Jun 9, 2017

Origins of Golf Terms

The website ScottishGolfHistory.org cites a golf glossary published in 1857 that included the word fore. Historians at the British Golf Museum have surmised that the term 'fore', as a warning in golf, evolved from forecaddie. A forecaddie is a person who accompanies a grouping of golfers around the golf course, going forward on each hole to be in a position to pinpoint the locations of the group members' shots.

Mary Queen of Scots was likely the first woman to play golf. It was during her reign that the famous golf course at St. Andrews was built, in 1552. Mary coined the term caddie by calling her assistants cadets. Of course, le cadet is French for youngster of the family. Some argue French military 'cadets' carried clubs for golfing royalty and this practice came to Scotland when Queen Mary Stuart returned in 1561.

One of the most common misconceptions is that the word GOLF is an acronym for Gentlemen Only Ladies Forbidden. The first documented mention of the word 'golf' is in Edinburgh on 6th March 1457, when King James II banned 'ye golf', in an attempt to encourage archery practice, which was being neglected. During 1460, Sir Gilbert Hay translated an old French poem into the Scottish language. It uses the word 'golf' twice. "Therefore I am sending you a ball to play with and a 'golf staff' to hit it with, as children do round the streets."

Also, according to Grammarist the most correct spelling is caddie (an attendant who carries the golf clubs for a player), not caddy (a can for storing tea). Although the word caddy is currently loosely accepted for caddie