1. Ancient History Of Football (David Alan Bozak, Garry Archer)
2. History Of Calcio And Its Affect On The Modern Game (Garry Archer)
3. History Of Football In The US (Garry Archer)
1. Ancient History of Football
From: dab@moxie.moxie.oswego.edu (David Alan Bozak)
Subject: HISTORY...1280 A.D.
Date: Mon May 20 10:11:34 EDT 1991

There have been several postings about the history of the sport.
Recently I stumbled across a book, "History of Football: From the
Beginnings to 1871" by F. P. Magoun, Jr., 1938.  I thought I would
relate one story from Trinity Sunday 1280:

    "Henry, son of William de Ellington, while playing at ball at
Ulkham on Trinity Sunday with David le Keu and many others ran against
David and received an accidental wound from David's knife of which he
died on the following Friday.  They were both running to the ball, and
ran against each other, and the knife hanging from David's belt stuck
out so that the point though in the sheath struck against Henry's
belly, and the handle against David's belly.  Henry was wounded right
through the sheath and died by misadventure."

and, in 1321 a dispensation granted from Avignon by Pope John XXII to
William de Spalding of Shouldham:

    "To William de Spalding, canon of Scoldham of the order of
Sempringham.  During the game at ball as he kicked the ball , a lay
friend of his, also called William, ran against him and wounded
himself on a sheathed knife carried by the canon, so severely that he
died within six days.  Dispensation is granted, as no blame is
attached to William de Spalding, who, feeling deeply the dath of his
friedn, and fearing what might be said by his enemies, has applied to
the pope."

I guess these incidents led to a description of illegal equipment...

From: archer@hsi.com (Garry Archer) 
Subject: Re: How old is soccer ?
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1993 17:24:38 GMT

Some form of "football" has been played for centuries.  Historians credit
the Chinese for drawing up rules of one game, called "tsu chu", circa 2500 BC.
The Greeks and Romans formed their own games too.  The Romans are credited
with exporting "harpastum" to Ancient Britain (Pritan) not long after their
invasion of the British mainland.  Indeed, the Romans exported their football
and handball games throughout their Empire.

In the middle eastern empires like Persia, before Roman times, "ball" games
similar to football and polo were played with the heads of criminals or
prisoners of war.

Some forms of football in 6th Century Columbia were observed and depicted by
by artists from Guatemala.

It is in the British Isles where many of the ancient games have been documented
and to a certain extent in Gaul (France) too.  Between the 7th and 11th
Centuries many indigenous games of Normandy, Brittany, Picardy, Cornwall,
Wales, Scotland, Ireland and English towns developed.  Since these times
many important games have been documented.  These games were usually played
at festivities and annual celebrations.  In England, one of these times
was Shrovetide.  To this day an annual game is played on Ash Wednesday
in Ashbourne, Derbyshire which involves the entire town.  The goals are
several miles apart and are a mile wide.  The villagers board up the town
and play several-hundred-aside!

Ball games were becoming increasingly popular in England in the Middle Ages.
It has been recorded, several times (!), that the game was banned by one
king or another!

In the 16th Century, a game called "calcio" is recorded as being played
annually in the Piazza della Novere, Florence, Italy.

It has been recorded that football was played in the Virgina Colony in 1609.

And the list goes on and on.

2. History of Calcio And Its Affect On The Modern Game
From: archer@hsi.com (Garry Archer) 
Subject: Calcio (was Re: SOCCER OR FOOTBALL)
Date: Thu, 4 Nov 1993 16:53:34 GMT

"Calcio" was originally a Florentine football game in 16th Century Italy.
It was institutionalised and played annually in the Piazza della Novere.
(Although I have also read that the "field" was actually the Piazza
di Santo Croce.)  It was a kickball type of game called "giuoco del calcio
fiorentino" played principally by the aristocracy and played every night
between Epiphany and Lent.

It didn't survive except as an annual pageant for tourists and its only
legacy is the adaption of the word in place of the English word "football".
It is therefore formally used in the name of the Italian football
association, "Federazione Italiana Giuoco Calcio" (Italian Kickball Game
Federation) which was founded in Turin in 1898 originally as the
"Federazione Italiana del Football".

Calcio actually resembled American Gridiron Football.  It featured much
running, jumping and tackling (in the gridiron fashion).  Goals were
scored by throwing the ball over a designated spot on the perimeter of
the field. Since the game was played by aristocrats, visiting English
aristocrats who observed the games began to look upon their own sprawling
versions of football with more favour. Several times in English (and
Scottish) history, football games had been banned by a regal succession
of Kings. Finally, with aristocratic support, football began to flourish
at institutions of higher education, eventually leading to widespread
acceptance and entrance of football into mainstream English life.

It seems, Britons owe Italy _twice_ for influencing the game as it was
introduced and developed in the British Isles.  The invading Roman
armies during the 1st to 5th Centuries.   Britain paid that back
somewhat after modern football was formalised in the 19th Century
in England.  British merchant seamen, businessmen and students
imported the modern game to Italian shores.  An Italian businessman,
Edoardo Bisio is generally credited with introducing structured
football into Turin in 1887.  The game took root and spread rapidly
to Genoa and Milan.  The first club was Football Club Internazionale
(not to be confused with Internazionale Milano), founded in Turin in 1890.

In 1898, the Federazione Italiana del Football was founded in Turin.
In 1905 it became one of the first associations after the charter group
of seven to join FIFA. Its present name, "Federazione Italiana Giuoco
Calcio" (FIGC), was adopted in 1909.

3. History of Football in the US
From: archer@hsi.com (Garry Archer) 
Subject: Re: Uruguay 1930 (Re: US WC telecast)
Date: Tue Jan 23 09:48:27 1990

> Obvious question: When did American football start?  It would seem that
> after 100+ years, y'all could have gotten the name of the sport right :-)

It's an interesting quetion you ask, and the answer could fill a book, but
I'll try and keep it short:

Some sort of football was played by the early settlers in Virginia as early
as 1609.

The "great" colleges of the Northeast and  New England were playing games
with round balls before during and after the American Civil War.  An annual
game at Harvard was initiated in 1827.  Princeton had their own version
of the game called "ballown".  Yale "roughhouse football" was being played
by as early as 1840.

The round, rubber ball was introduced into football games by the 1850's at
which time dribbling and passing skills associated with modern soccer were

British immigrants in the large cities began to introduce "their version" of
the game.  In 1862, three years after the formation of the first "dribbling"
club in England, the Oneida Football Club was founded in Boston.  The first
organised "dribbling" club organised *ANYWHERE* outside of England... even
before Scotland, Wales and Ireland even!  All 17 members of the club are
thought to have been English by birth or heritage.  They played scratch games
on Boston Common from 1862-65 without conceding a single game or goal.

So there is a very rudimentary early history of soccer in the USA.  I would
have to say that it really all began in 1862 with the founding of Oneida FC.

So yes, the Americans could have gotten their nomenclature straight nearly
130 years ago!