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The Royal Tennis Court later came to be revered around the first anniversary of 20 June 1789, a decisive date in the history of France and of democracy. In 1790, a bronze plaque bearing the text of the oath was presented to the National Assembly and then taken in a procession to Versailles and put up facing the entrance to the Real Tennis room. Originally a royal sports and entertainment room, it became home to a temple to the memory of the abolition of the monarchy. It was soon neglected, however, and became a national asset in 1793. In the absence of any maintenance, it was closed to the public five years later.
The origin of the term "racket" is unclear. According to a popular belief first published by tennis player Malcolm Whitman in 1932, the expression comes from the Arabic term rahat al-yad, meaning "palm of hand". Modern research however, holds this thesis in a highly questionable light. Instead, the term is more likely to be derived from the Flemish word "raketsen" which is itself derived from Middle French "rachasser", meaning "to strike (the ball) back".
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If the score is tied at 40 ("40-all"), that is "deuce," which is essentially another word for tie. To break the tie, someone must win two points in a row. If you are serving at deuce and you win the next point, then you say "my ad," which means "my advantage." If your opponent wins, it goes back to deuce, and someone again must win by two points in a row. Yes, this could go on forever.
Interestingly, Shapton does not come across as preoccupied with winning: a competitive swimmer who was not so competitive? Kirill is competitive. When he is leading a group session, he loves jumping in and crashing the net and punching remarkable volleys at impossible angles. And when it is just the two of us, and I hit that rare ball that forces him to make a bad shot or, even more rarely, get one past him for a winner, I know that during the next rally we have, he is going to crush the ball, hit a winner I never get close to, then quietly say sorry, as if he were working a little something out.
It wasn't until the 16th century that rackets came into use, and the game began to be called "tennis", from the French term tenez, which can be translated as "hold!", "receive!" or "take!", an interjection used as a call from the server to his opponent. It was popular in England and France, although the game was only played indoors where the ball could be hit off the wall. Henry VIII of England was a big fan of this game, which is now known as real tennis. During the 18th and early 19th centuries, as real tennis declined, new racket sports emerged in England.