Outlawing football?

This content was published on March 17, 2008 - 15:09

Hordes of hooligans and damage have no effect: football is still king in modern Western society, despite the cost and nuisance it sometimes brings. It wasn't always the way. In 1314, the mayor of London outlawed the football of the time "as a result of the large disorder caused in the city", a sport that "could give rise to a lot of evil that God condemns". In 1388, Richard II did the same: "Locals and workers must have bows and arrows and make use of them on Sundays and festival days and abandon all hand and foot ball games."

Two extracts from La fabuleuse histoire du football (The Fabulous History of Football) by Jean-Philippe Rethacker and Jacques Thibert (Ed. Minerva 2003)


This article was automatically imported from our old content management system. If you see any display errors, please let us know:

In compliance with the JTI standards

In compliance with the JTI standards

More: SWI certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative

Contributions under this article have been turned off. You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here. Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

Share this story

Change your password

Do you really want to delete your profile?