Friday, January 12, 2007

Facinating Invention - No. 8 The Game of Rugby

In the books I got for Christmas, one of the games you MUST play is rugby. Emily, at my school, is rugby-mad and she is the smallest year 5 I know; the ball is almost as big as she is. My godmother is also rugby-mad or probably just mad but she likes rugby ALOT. On the other hand, Dad, who is a dentist and big on teeth, gets mad at rugby because he reckons they do not look after their gnashers. Mum says she doen not understand rugby but quite likes the look of it.

Above is a picture of William Webb Ellis. He was supposed to have invented the game of rugby when he was a schoolboy at a school called Rugby (that is quite a co-incidence!) In 1823 he is said to have been so cheesed off with playing with just his feet that he picked up the ball and ran with it. Hmmm. What do we know about William Webb Ellis? Not much. What we do know is that the boys (definitley no girls then) used to play football at Rugby and they liked to make up their own rules as they went along which sounds excellent.

-Let's have 100 players on Team A and 4 players on Team B and see who wins!
-Let's have a pitch with no boundaries!
-Let's NOT have a referee!

So, I do not think that someone picking up the ball would have been a. unusual or b. against the rules -since there weren't any.
William Webb Ellis's name was probably picked out of a top hat. Anyway, what is true is that rugby was invented by boys (yeh!) and soon loads of schools and even adults started playing it.
This stone says that William Webb Ellis, "...with a fine disregard for the rules...
first took the ball in his arms and ran with it thus originating the distinctive
feature of the rugby game"

Thing is, nobody asked William about it.


Khylan Seriphyn said...

I always thought it was a co-incidence too that the sport of rugby came out of rugby, and that there is still a place called rugby today.

Mr Webb Ellis had a very lucky hat draw, although there must've been some sort of scrum about it ;0)

Susan Abraham said...

I wonder that my favourite children's storyteller, Enid Blyton, did not write about rugby games, Wilf.

btw, are you learning the game in full swing?

Atyllah said...

LOL - chuckling out loud at Khylan's comment.

Personally, I think rugby's just another opportunity for humans to beat each other up. And what I don't understand is this, what is it with all these games that involves chasing balls all over the place. Why a ball? Why not something else?
Wilf, I depend upon you to enlighten me!

Wilf said...

Tee-hee - I reckon it got PRETTY nasty, Khylan!

Wilf said...

Sport was not really her thing maybe. She was all jolly children and toys and fairies - pretty nasty really, in a different way.
I might learn rugby a bit later on, Susan but not until Dad has finsihed finding the perfect mouthguard.

Wilf said...

I think you are right, Atyllah - Rugby is another excuse to beat each other up - that's the fun of it!
I actually believe that the round object is as old as time. It was only after a great game of football that man realised the wheel might also be useful to human beings. I intend to look into the ball side of things.

Atyllah said...

Wilf, I await your feedback and research with due anticipation! If you keep up the good work I shall most definitely speak to the Council of Wise Elders and the Allied Federation of Intergalactic Associations about giving you a special commendation.

Susan Abraham said...

I don't know about pretty nasty Wilf though I've read stuff about her.
I loved her as a child and she brought me joy and hope when life was hard. And that's why I'm the writer & reader today. ;-)
Who is your favourite children's writer at this time,Wilf? Sorry this isn't about rugby, right now.

Jude said...

Rugby, football- men, or women for that matter, chasing a ball of any description across a muddy pitch isn't my idea of fun, but maybe you'll like it Wilf. Have you tried basketball? Now that's a game I can appreciate. Wonder who invented it?

Wilf said...

What a good question, Susan. Well, I do like books of facts and I have EVERY copy of The Guiness Book of Records; also books about how things work. I like all the Roald Dahl books, Captain Underpants by Dave Spivey, Treasure Island, Granny and Alex Rider stories by Anthony Horowitz, Moonfleet. That is all I can think of for now.

Wilf said...

We had a special basketball and football day at school and it was good fun. I think basketball needs some looking into as well.

Anita Marion Loughrey said...

Where I live, the kids are not allowed to play full-blown Rugby until they are thirteen. They play a variation of the game called tag rugby where you're not allowed to touch each other but pull off tags hanging from the shorts and they don't have scrums.
I think normal Rugby is much more exciting to watch than football or basketball.

Wilf said...

Here in the grim north, we play normal rugby from being babies - no not really! But we stop playing tag rugby at age 8. If my godmother had her way, I would be playing for England before I leave school but I cannot see it happening since I still need to start actually playing.