No one knows exactly how croquet began.
There’s evidence it was played in London as early as the 16th
century, but the game’s French name and use of French terminology
suggest it was developed earlier in France.
We do know, however, that the rules of croquet were standardized in England in 1870,
the same year the All England Croquet Club at Wimbledon
began to host the croquet championship.
While croquet can be played on any grassy surface, it’s properly
played on perfectly flat and immaculately groomed courts.
The object of the game, which can be played as singles
or doubles, is to hit a solid plastic ball (they were originally
wooden) through a series of six or nine metal hoops (called
wickets) using a wooden mallet.
While the Victorians played croquet at private clubs and
upper-class garden parties, the game survives today on the lawns
of Oxford and Cambridge universities, private clubs, certain
stately homes, and a few luxury hotels.
Change into your croquet whites, Myron, and we’ll have a quick match before supper.