The Origins of the Game of Darts
For over a century, darts has been a beloved pub game enjoyed by millions of people around the world. But where did it all begin? Let’s explore the fascinating history of darts and how it evolved into the game we know and love today.
The Medieval Roots of Darts
The origins of darts can be traced back to the 14th century, when soldiers used to throw short arrows- or darts- at the bottom of wine barrels to pass the time when they weren’t fighting. These barrels quickly became known as practice targets, and the sport became popular among the soldiers.
The Modernization of Darts
As the years went on, the barrels were replaced with circular targets and feathers with steel tips. The first standardized dart board was created in 1896 by Brian Gamlin, who developed the iconic “clock” layout that is still used today. Darts soon became a popular indoor game and was played in bars and pubs across England.
The Rise of Darts as a Professional Sport
It wasn’t until the 1920s that darts became a competitive sport. The National Darts Association was formed in 1924, marking the beginning of organized darts competitions. The sport continued to grow in popularity, and in the 1970s, the game was televised for the first time, paving the way for professional darts.
Darts Today: A Global Phenomenon
Darts is now played in countries all over the world, with the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) and British Darts Organisation (BDO) hosting major tournaments and competitions. The annual PDC World Darts Championship draws millions of viewers from around the world, cementing the game’s place as one of the most popular sports in the world.