Gaelic football is the most popular spectator sport in Ireland. Championship matches regularly attract crowds ranging from 35,000 to 65,000 people, depending on ground capacities. This is the first comprehensive history of the game to be published ...
in modern times. The game was codified in the 1880s on the foundation of the Gaelic Athletic Association. Prior to that a series of local rough and tumbles, usually known by the generic name of Caid, had been played throughout Ireland. The new codified game, played with a round ball which could be both handled and kicked, contains elements of soccer, rugby and Australian Rules. At its best it provides a thrilling spectacle of high catching, long kicking and clever interpassing. Jack Mahon's history traces the rise and fall of different powers in the game over the last 115 years. The most consistent of all counties has been Kerry, which never failed to win at least one All-Ireland championship in every decade of the twentieth century and won the opening championship of the twenty-first. But teams from every part of the country have dominated at one time or another, and Jack Mahon's history deals impartially with them all. This fine history of Ireland's most popular game has already established itself as a definitive work. Other books by Jack Mahon Galway GAA in Old Photographs.