Thomas Kincaid's diary: extract 1

Sheet of paper covered in hand-writing, with numbers in margin

Page from Thomas Kincaid's diary, 1687-1688.
[National Library of Scotland reference: Adv.MS.32.7.7]

An extract from the diary of golf enthusiast and Edinburgh medical student Thomas Kincaid.


'The way of playing at the Golve. Jan 20

'after dinner I went out to the Golve with Hen[ry] Legatt. I found that the only way of playing at the Golve is

  1. to stand as you do at fenceing with the small sword, bending your legs a little and holding the muscles of your legs and back and armes exceeding bent or fixt or stiffe, and not at all slackning them in the time you are bringing down the Stroak (which you readily doe.)
  2. the ball most be straight before your breast, a little towards the left foot.
  3. your left foot most stand but a little before the right, or rather it most be even with it, and at a convenient distance from it,
  4. ye most lean most to the right foot,
  5. but all the turning about of your body most be only upon your legs holding them as stiff as ye can.
  6. then ye most incline your body a little forward from the small of the back and upwards; for seeing all the strength of the stroake is from the swing of the body in turning about, then certainly the further forward you incline your body or shoulders they most have the greater swing, and consequently give the greater stroak, but you most not incline so fare forward as that it make you stand the more unstedfastly and waver a little in bringing down the stroak.
  7. you most keep your body in '

More diary extracts:
extract 2 | extract 3 | extract 4 | extract 5 | extract 6 | extract 7 | extract 8 | extract 9 | extract 10 | extract 11 | extract 12

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