Ball game
(1,113 words)

1. Educational ideal

From the Renaissance on, Humanist pedagogues attempted to associate the love of ball games with ancient traditions (e.g. Galen), but the modern term derives not from the Latin pila but from the Germanic ball (Italian palla). Humanist teachers and princes’ tutors of the 15th century, like Vittorino da Feltre and Guarino da Verona, ennobled the ball game by placing it alongside equestrian exercises. Baldassare Castiglione’s Courtier (Cortegiano, 15…

Cite this page
Behringer, Wolfgang, “Ball game”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Executive editor of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy. Consulted online on 17 February 2018 <>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20160321

▲   Back to top   ▲