NCG's Golf Glossary: Why do golfers shout fore?

Don’t know your dormies from your doglegs? NCG’s Golf Glossary is here to help

Here at NCG we pride ourselves on being the publication for the everyday player, so we’ve taken it upon ourselves to delve into the wonderful world of the golfing lexicon.

Sometimes the most obvious terms have the most interesting story, so you might find yourself an interesting conversation starter…

Why do golfers shout fore?

The shout of the word fore is used to warn players in golf that the golf ball is heading towards the area they are in.

How would I use it in a sentence?

“I missed the fairway to the right so shouted fore right to warn other players”

What are the origins?

The word is an Australian interjection and the first mention of the term can be dated back to 1881 when the word was used in an Australian golf museum.

It is believed the word comes from the military meaning “beware of”. Artillerymen used to shout the the word ‘fore’ to inform near by infantrymen to get on the ground to avoid the shells overhead.

In terms of golf the term is likely to have come from the word ‘fore-caddie’ when caddies used to stand in the middle of the driving range to judge how far shots were going.

The hitter would shout to warn the caddy that the ball was incoming.

Any other business?

The European Tour has warned players on numerous occasions about shouting fore if a shot is endangering anyone.

There have been numerous occasions where players haven’t shouted fore and hit spectators or camera crews.

In order to solve the problem the tour have said they will discipline players who are unable to shout, most likely with a fine.

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