Origins of Golf
The first published reference to golf is an edict issued in 1457 by James II of Scotland, in which he banned the playing of golf since it was competing for the attention of his subjects with archery practice (a skill more important to the kingdom in those times). The game of golf, as developed in Scotland, seems to have originated in Holland where a similar game, colf, was played on ice. Scottish tradesmen probably imported the game to their own country, where the character of the game was developed. It was in Scotland that the basic features of modern golf, hitting a ball cross-country into a hole in the ground, were established.