Modern football - invented in Scotland!

'Vocabula' title page
'Vocabula' title page

Scottish historians have discovered that football as we know it today was invented in Scotland.

While the World Cup is played out in Germany, the book which contains this surprising information is on temporary display in a German museum. Part of the National Library of Scotland's collections, 'Vocabula' is a Latin text which proves that organised football was being played in Scotland 230 years before it was introduced in England.

The book was written by Aberdeen schoolteacher David Wedderburn, and first published in 1636. It describes aspects of the game - including goalkeepers and passing the ball - that were thought to have originated in England in the 1860s or later. The discovery was made recently when historians found an English translation of the text.

Our copy of the 1709 edition is part of the 'Fascination Football' exhibition in Hamburg's Museum für Völkerkunde. It is expected to be seen by thousands of fans of 'the beautiful game' during the World Cup.

14 June 2006

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