English 10: Writing Portfolio
Catholic Memorial High School
|"Sports" are spoken and lived
everyday by people of many stripes.
"Sports" are a major part of culture and economy and almost every country in the world.
When the word "sport" is talked about, most people think of some kind of game or activity
involving two teams playing on a field. The five most popular sports today are Hockey, Baseball,
Basketball, Soccer, and Football. Althought this term agrees with the first definition of the word
"sport" ever, which was founded in the year 1472, history tells us that the word
"sport" means many other things. For example, one of the less common definitions is, a
young man or fellow. Like the dramatic change and development of English history, the word
"sport" has also has been changed because it has been used for over five hundred years.
I took a survey to get definitions that ordinary people would give today for the word
"sport". According to the sports survey, respondents #1 and 2, Meaghan and Shane, defined
"sport" as an activity or game played by two teams. Respondents #3 and 4, defined it as
some sort of competitive activity involving rules and points. However, respondent #5, Pamela,
defined "sport" as a kid or young man who plays a sport. Eighty percent of the
respondents in the "sport" survey defined the word as some kind of competitive game.
Twenty percent of the respondents, defined the word as something irrelevant to any game or activity.
This shows how important and dominant sports are to people.
The OED has found many definitions for the word "sport". The first ever written
definition was a pleasant past time; entertainment, or amusement, which was founded in 1472. There
are many different and uncommon definitions for the word "sport". For instance, in 1604
Shakespeare used the word "sport" as an amorous dalliance or intercourse. This was the
second ever written definition for the word "sport". In the 17th century
"sport" was being referred to as an act of killing or hunting a variety of animals for not
only food, but also clothing. The word "sport" has been associated in the Middle Ages
with many kings and queens. Of course the first sports ever played were in Ancient Greece at the
Olympics. These games included; the marathon, wrestling, and boxing. In 1571 "sport" was
thought of as a theatrical performance or play. This would make sense because this was around the
time of the Elizabethan Era, where plays were an important part of everyday life. In 1935
"sport" was defined as a familiar form of address used to a stranger. The word
"sport" has been defined on many ways over the past six centuries.
Through the development of the word "sport", amny famous authors have included it in their
works. While using the word, they have also changed the definition and the way people understand
it. In 1596 Shakespeare used the word "sport" in his Taming of the Shrew.
Shakespeare used the word in the line, "I haue some sport in hand." Shakespeare is using
"sport" in a positive way as a pleasant past time, entertainment, or amusement. In 1837
Charles Dickens used "sport" in his Pickwick Papers. Dickens wrote, "I am
delighted to view any sports which may be safely indulged in." Dickens was using
"sport" as a game or some sort of bodily exercise. In the Harvard Episodes,
written in 1897, Flandrau used "sport" in the sentence, "I don't suppose
they're "cheap" sports." Flandrau was the first person to use "sport"
as a young man, or a fellow.
Today almost all newspapers use the word "sport" everyday. Most of them even have a
certain section specifically for sports around the world. These sections allow fans to stay up to
date with their favorite teams and how they are doing in the season. On the Boston Globes website,
boston.com, there is an individual subsection for sports around Boston. On November 3, 2007, Globe
staff man Mike Reiss wrote, "If the Patriots are able to beat the Colts at the RCA Dome, they
will have a shot at becoming one of the best sports teams ever to compete in the National Football
League." ESPN is also a great source of sports news in the world today. ESPN is strictly
focused on sports and hilghlights from different games played the day before. This is a great
chance for people to see a recap of the games if they missed them. On November 4, 2007, ESPN
writer, Brad Edwards, talked about the National Hockey League and how they are getting close to
where they were before the Lockout Season. Edwards wrote, "With lower ticket prices and great
young talent in the NHL, franchises are beginning to get the fan support they had before 2004."
Seeing how so many television shows and websites are all about sports, you can see just how big
sports are in every culture.
Most words in the English language have been deprived from other cultures in Europe. However, some
foreign countries have difficult times pronouncing the words that everyday Americans use.
"Sport" is not one of these words. The idea of sports and what they mean are understood
in every nation in the world. So, people of different speaking languages don't have a hard
time understanding the word "sport". I asked my neighbor, who came from Italy, how she
would define the word "sport". She defined it almost exactly the same way my sister
defined the word. This shows you how easy people recognized the word "sport", no matter
what language the speak.
The word "sport" has a tremendous history dating all the way back to the first Olympics,
in Ancient Greece. As far as written records, "sport" has been used in text for five
hundred and thirty five years. Based on history, I believe "sport" has a very bright
future. Seeing how every single culture around the world plays some kind of sport, people will be
playing and speaking about sports for as long as human life is around. Generations after
generations will learn to adopt the great sports of their fathers and their country. So, as long as
people are still living, sports will always be a majority activity on earth.
The Oxford English Dictionary dates the word
“running” back to the year 1450. Running is
One thing that separates Britain from the rest
of the world, is their rich history in literature,