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What Does Billiards Mean?


Everyone has played a game of billiards at one point or another in their lives, and if you haven’t, you’re going to want to try your shot at it after getting informed on its background and how it is essentially played.

If you have no idea what the game of billiards even is, then let Mitchell Pool Tables intrigue you with our world of billiards.

According to Merriam-Webster, the word “billiards” refers to any various games played on a cloth-topped, cushion-railed rectangular table by driving hard, baseball-sized balls against one another or into pockets, with a long stick that is called a cue.

There are different types of billiard games that entail their own rules and overall objectives such as carom, English billiards, snooker, and American-style eight ball, which is also known as pocket billiards and/or pool.

Let’s walk through the game of billiards and how it became one of the most popular games throughout the world.


Where Did Billiards Originate


There are a few theories on when and where billiards originated, but the most common belief is that it was discovered by the French during the 15th Century.

Just like croquet, billiards emerged as a lawn game that only the royals would take part in. The name “billiards” was said to have come from the French word “billart” which meant wooden stick, and “bille” which meant ball. The combined version of Billart + bille translates to a game that uses a wooden stick and a ball, billiards.

As the popularity of billiards grew, billiard tables have become common sights in gambling parlors or bars where betting commonly occurs.

Billiards has predominantly evolved and transformed since the 15th Century by the British and the Americans to make it into the game of pool that it is today.


Are Billiards and Pool the Same Thing

The popular opinion assumes that billiards and pool are the same thing, although if you’re educated enough on billiards, you understand that the two are not the same game.

Billiards refers to any kind of tabletop game played with a cue stick and ball, while pool generally means a game with pockets.


How Billiards is Played


Historically a gentleman’s game, billiards involves a cue ball and a red “striker” ball for each of the two players. The objective of billiards isn’t to sink a ball into a pocket, but instead it is to use the cue ball to push the striker ball into the opponent’s cue ball. A billiards table does not have pockets, but instead the table is surrounded by bumpers that allow balls to ricochet and move around the table.

Game points in billiards are scored by striking the opponent’s cue ball and vary based on the difficulty of the shot. Rather than the white cue ball found in pool, cue balls in billiards are colored to make it easy to tell your cue from the opponent’s.

Billiards How Many Balls

Depending on which billiards game is played, billiards can involve from three up to twenty-two game balls.

How Many Players in Billiards

Billiards involves two players.

Where is Billiards Most Popular

Billiards is a worldwide game that has been transformed by various countries to make it the game that it is today.

America, Canada, Taiwan, the Philippines, and China regularly enjoy the game of billiards, although the United Kingdom is where billiards is most popular.


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