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Did baseball begin in 18th-century England?

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posted on Jun, 9 2010 @ 11:59 AM

An extract from an 18th-century diary containing the oldest known reference to baseball is among the items on display in a new exhibition in London exploring the English origins and cricketing connections of America's national sport.

While baseball was once claimed to have been invented in the U.S. in the mid-19th century, recent findings suggest a sport of the same name may have evolved decades earlier alongside cricket, crossing the Atlantic with English settlers to the American colonies.

One notable discovery found in a shed in a village in Surrey, southern England, in 2008 was a handwritten 18th-century diary belonging to a local lawyer, William Bray.

"Went to Stoke church this morn.," wrote Bray on Easter Monday in 1755. "After dinner, went to Miss Jeale's to play at base ball with her the 3 Miss Whiteheads, Miss Billinghurst, Miss Molly Flutter, Mr. Chandler, Mr. Ford and H. Parsons. Drank tea and stayed til 8."

Of course it started in the UK.. but then I'm from the UK

To be honest, it does kinda make sense seeing as we have a more gentle version of the game still in semi popular use today, rounders.

Rounders uses smaller bats and balls, but the principle is still the same as baseball.
Running alongside cricket it seems the perfect blend of ball games that require a bat of some description..

Saying that, I don't think we'll ever forget the very first game of tennis played on the lawn of the white house


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