Greshamistas at tennis

Visit To The Royal Tennis Court, Hampton Court: Excursion

Sept. 14, 2023: -

Sir Thomas Gresham probably didn’t include Real Tennis among his many

attributes, but it was all the rage in Elizabethan times. Today it is still played with

gusto at the Royal Tennis Court, Hampton Court. We were given the opportunity to

learn about and observe the game with two in-house tennis historians and a playing


Royal Tennis Court, Hampton Court.jpg

In the great Gresham Society tradition of allowing our own amateurs to cause carnage in the aftermath of professionals (see Gresham Society Soirées passim) we then had a go ourselves...

Greshamistas at tennis

...watched a mixture of professionals and amateurs playing, demonstrating how it should and shouldn't be done, followed by a splendid tea.

Ian Harris Marking A Tennis Match In The Hampton Court Dedans.jpg

Finally, our own Ian Harris, ably assisted by a pair of real tennis-playing musicians and assorted members of Professor Connell's family, (Tim & Pinar), entertained us with Tudor music, drama and tales of Thomas Gresham's tenuous link with the game and with Queen Elizabeth 1. We even heard some music by John Bull: the first Gresham Professor of music and, by several accounts, a very naughty boy.

John Bull - First Gresham Professor Of Music & Possibly Producer Of The First Selfie.jpg

If by any chance you want to read more about this event, it is described in detail on Ian Harris's Ogblog - click here.

Indeed, for those with a taste for detail, the entire transcript of Ian's performance piece can be scrutinised on that same blog - click here.

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