Ebenezer Cobb Morley: Google Doodle celebrates football's founding father
The first rules of football were formally written by Ebenezer Cobb Morley, whose 187th birthday is celebrated Thursday by Google Doodle.
As captain of Barnes Football Club, he soon realized how wild and violent the game could be, and wrote a letter to the popular newspaper Bell’s Life, suggesting a set of standardized rules. The letter eventually led to a now-historic meeting, led by Morley, at the Freeman’s Tavern on October 26, 1863.
The 13 rules, which the FA published in a pamphlet titled “Laws of the Game,” hint to the sheer violence of pre-regulated football — one rule sternly prohibits “hacking,” or kicking other players.
The rules not only helped temper violent play, but standardized the game across the country, with the FA as the governing body.