TNB Night Owl – Quidditch

Quidditch, photo by Ben Holland Photography

Often it’s hard to trace the exact origin of a sport. Games tend to evolve over time, and where one sport ends and another begins can be a matter of great contention.

Not so, quidditch. The origins are quite certain; it was a game invented by J.K. Rowling for her Harry Potter book series. The rules were just simple enough for a reader to be able to follow while being complex enough to generate some excitement in the description of the game. And, of course, there had to be some key event which would make Harry the hero of the day.

In 2005, at Middlebury College in Vermont, some friends got together and decided on a set of rules that would keep to the spirit of the game as described in the Rowling novels. Playing the game in public drew the attention of other Potter fans, and other people joined in. Within two years they were having intercollegiate matches against players at Vassar. It’s grown from there.

The game is fairly contact-heavy, with 7 people on each team trying to get balls through hoops on one side of a playing field without getting smashed by a rapidly-hurled dodgeball. Games are of indeterminate length, ending when someone catches the snitch… a tennis ball inside of a pouch, attached to the shorts of an impartial official who is allowed to commit minor physical violence to keep players away.

Today there are more than fifteen national quidditch associations, an international governing body, and a World Cup match held every two years, comprising the best players from national teams.

International rules don’t require the broomstick between the legs to have bristles at the end, but it’s expected at American games. Otherwise the game just wouldn’t fly.

Question of the night: What is your favorite children’s or young adult book?

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About AlienMotives 1991 Articles
Ex-Navy Reactor Operator turned bookseller. Father of an amazing girl and husband to an amazing wife. Tired of willful political blindness, but never tired of politics. Hopeful for the future.