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  • Old snooker rules?

    I was reading a 'question and answer' in the May 1913 Billiard Monthly.

    Q. —”During a game of snooker the striker pockets a red ball and is snookered for all coloured balls. He declares the
    yellow ball. During the transit of the white ball he hits a red ball first, then the white cannons on to the blue ball. How many away?”

    A. Two away. The stroke is completed as soon as the red is struck and the striking of the blue is merely an after incident.


    When did the rules of snooker change so that the minimum foul is 4 points?

    Thanks!
    My favourite players: Walter Lindrum (AUS), Neil Robertson (AUS), Eddie Charlton (AUS), Robby Foldvari (AUS), Vinnie Calabrese (AUS), Jimmy White, Stephen Hendry, Alex Higgins, Ronnie O'Sullivan, Dominic Dale and Barry Hawkins.
    I dream of a 147 (but would be happy with a 100)

  • #2
    fond this on web
    The 4 point minimum penalty has been the rule for many years, at least since 1920. I have a small rule book published in that year which clearly states this, and that may have been introduced when the rules were standardised 1n 1901.

    In the history section, you will find a set of rules dated 1896 that were published in "Pyramids & Pool Games" by J.P. Buchanan. Rules 25, 26, and 27 clearly state that it is the value of the ball played at which is the penalty; so that would be 1 point for a red, 2 points for yellow, and 3 points for green.

    "The Billiards and Snooker Referees' Handbook" by John Street and Peter Rook (now back in print), includes a brief history of the rules which state that in the early days the penalties were "one away for missing a red" and also "two away for missing any colour from a snookered position after potting a red."
    Craftsman custom made cue
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    • #3
      After the amalgamation of the Billiard Association and the Billiards Control Club in June 1919, they reviewed all the rules being used to bring them into a common code. The first to be addressed were the rules of billiards, which were reissued in September 1919, followed by the other table games, including snooker, over the following year. The BCC had been using the minimum penalty of four points in their rules since their earliest issue (September 1909), and this became a standard when the amalgamated rules were published.

      It wasn't just a case of adopting all the BCC rules, as changes were made to both codes. For instance, under the B.C.C. rules, a player being snookered as the result of a foul was entitled to have any balls taken up to enable him to play direct on the nearest target ball. This did not apply under the B.A. Rules, which stated that "no ball shall in any circumstances be taken up." To overcome this particular difference, a new concept, the "free ball" was introduced to the rules.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by 100-uper View Post
        After the amalgamation of the Billiard Association and the Billiards Control Club in June 1919, they reviewed all the rules being used to bring them into a common code. The first to be addressed were the rules of billiards, which were reissued in September 1919, followed by the other table games, including snooker, over the following year. The BCC had been using the minimum penalty of four points in their rules since their earliest issue (September 1909), and this became a standard when the amalgamated rules were published.

        It wasn't just a case of adopting all the BCC rules, as changes were made to both codes. For instance, under the B.C.C. rules, a player being snookered as the result of a foul was entitled to have any balls taken up to enable him to play direct on the nearest target ball. This did not apply under the B.A. Rules, which stated that "no ball shall in any circumstances be taken up." To overcome this particular difference, a new concept, the "free ball" was introduced to the rules.
        Did the referee lift the ball up from the table until shot was complete and then return it to the same position?
        My favourite players: Walter Lindrum (AUS), Neil Robertson (AUS), Eddie Charlton (AUS), Robby Foldvari (AUS), Vinnie Calabrese (AUS), Jimmy White, Stephen Hendry, Alex Higgins, Ronnie O'Sullivan, Dominic Dale and Barry Hawkins.
        I dream of a 147 (but would be happy with a 100)

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        • #5
          Yes. The rule was copied from the existing rule for "life" pool. Snooker being just another pool game, this would have been quite logical.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by 100-uper View Post
            Yes. The rule was copied from the existing rule for "life" pool. Snooker being just another pool game, this would have been quite logical.
            Any other strange 'old school' rules that you know of 100-uper?

            Thanks for the info!

            My favourite players: Walter Lindrum (AUS), Neil Robertson (AUS), Eddie Charlton (AUS), Robby Foldvari (AUS), Vinnie Calabrese (AUS), Jimmy White, Stephen Hendry, Alex Higgins, Ronnie O'Sullivan, Dominic Dale and Barry Hawkins.
            I dream of a 147 (but would be happy with a 100)

            Comment


            • #7
              I suppose that if you go back before the Billiard Association making its code in 1901, there were lots of anomalies, including the number of pool balls you had on the table, where they were placed and the value of the colours. These could all change slightly depending on the version you were playing.

              Perhaps the biggest change from the original version is the use of the term "snooker" which now describes being unable to hit a ball "on." In the version first introduced to England in 1889, the term applied to any player who was still to score.

              Although the game is eminently suited to a contest between two players, it started as a "pool" game and could have had up to a dozen taking part. In these games, it was a matter of status to graduate from being a "snooker," as well as being a financial imperative. The idea of moving through the ranks according to your score, demonstrate quite well the game's military origins.

              If the original meaning had remained, it would only be applied today to someone who had been "whitewashed" in a game.

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              • #8
                Thanks 100-uper. Very interesting indeed.

                Why was someone called a 'snooker' if they were yet to score?

                Is it a military non-compliment?

                Beginner/noobie?
                My favourite players: Walter Lindrum (AUS), Neil Robertson (AUS), Eddie Charlton (AUS), Robby Foldvari (AUS), Vinnie Calabrese (AUS), Jimmy White, Stephen Hendry, Alex Higgins, Ronnie O'Sullivan, Dominic Dale and Barry Hawkins.
                I dream of a 147 (but would be happy with a 100)

                Comment


                • #9
                  A "snooker" was a first year cadet at the military academy in Woolwich. They were generally despised by the older cadets, and it was a term used to signify a person of the lowest possible rank. The derivation of the term is another interesting story.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by 100-uper View Post
                    A "snooker" was a first year cadet at the military academy in Woolwich. They were generally despised by the older cadets, and it was a term used to signify a person of the lowest possible rank. The derivation of the term is another interesting story.
                    Go on then
                    My favourite players: Walter Lindrum (AUS), Neil Robertson (AUS), Eddie Charlton (AUS), Robby Foldvari (AUS), Vinnie Calabrese (AUS), Jimmy White, Stephen Hendry, Alex Higgins, Ronnie O'Sullivan, Dominic Dale and Barry Hawkins.
                    I dream of a 147 (but would be happy with a 100)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I've done a bit of research into how the word "snooker" came into being, but I can't find out anything definite at this distance in time.

                      I have found out that during the Napoleonic wars the word used to describe a newly-joined cadet into the army was ‘Neux’. The use, and pronunciation of this word as a term of abuse, can be traced as far back as 1812 when it appears on record that an officer of the East Norfolk Militia was fined a bottle of wine in the Officers' Mess for calling the Vice-President "A Newks."

                      The Dictionary of English Slang confirms that by 1860 the term “snooks” was a more widely accepted abusive term, and it may be supposed that "nooks,” evolved into "snooks," perhaps through this connection, and then ultimately into “snookers” some time before the 1870s when it became known to Neville Chamberlain.

                      As a more fanciful explanation for this last stage of development, I have discovered that in the early 1850s there was a comedy duo called “Hooker and Snooker” who were performing in the London theatres during the earliest days of the Music Hall variety acts. This would suggest that the word "snooker" existed independently from, and probably pre-dates, its adoption by the Woolwich Academy.

                      It could be speculated that the act of “Hooker and Snooker” may have been directly responsible for the ultimate conversion of "snooks" to "snookers." Perhaps Mr. Snooker’s comic character was sufficiently inept, that his persona was sarcastically applied by one of the older cadets to a hapless junior at Woolwich, and the name stuck?

                      Unfortunately, this particular link can be no more than guesswork, as my research reveals nothing more about Messrs. Hooker and Snooker (real names Messrs. Widdicombe and Shepherd) other than a few newspaper reviews. Still, there remains the faintest chance that these now forgotten performers gave the world a legacy which far transcends the fame achieved in their own lifetime.
                      Last edited by 100-uper; 29 March 2014, 01:19 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Interesting - thanks 100-uper !

                        My favourite players: Walter Lindrum (AUS), Neil Robertson (AUS), Eddie Charlton (AUS), Robby Foldvari (AUS), Vinnie Calabrese (AUS), Jimmy White, Stephen Hendry, Alex Higgins, Ronnie O'Sullivan, Dominic Dale and Barry Hawkins.
                        I dream of a 147 (but would be happy with a 100)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Old snooker rules?

                          I think I read somewhere that "snooker" was a deveration of an Indian slang word for a greenhorn soldier. ?
                          Up the TSF!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by DeanH View Post
                            I think I read somewhere that "snooker" was a deveration of an Indian slang word for a greenhorn soldier. ?
                            I haven't heard that one before. It may be the case, but it seems clear that in the context of naming the game of snooker, Chamberlain took the reference from Woolwich Academy. This is what he wrote in his letter to The Field in 1938:

                            "A subaltern of the field battery at Jubbulpore was playing the game with us one day, and when talking to me about his time at Woolwich, he mentioned the word 'snooker,' and he explained to me that it was a designation applied to the inexperienced cadets when they joined the Royal Academy there. A soubriquet somewhat on the same lines as the title bestowed on midshipmen in the Royal Navy by their seniors in rank.

                            The term was a new one to me, but I soon had an opportunity of exploiting it when one of our party failed to hole a coloured ball which was close to a corner pocket. I called out to him: 'Why, you're a regular snooker.' I had to explain to the company the definition of the word, and, to soothe the feelings of the culprit, I added that we were all, so to speak, 'snookers' at the game, so it would be very appropriate to call the game 'snooker' ?"
                            Last edited by 100-uper; 29 March 2014, 04:03 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Old snooker rules?

                              yep read that passage before
                              Up the TSF!

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