Why is a football field called the gridiron?

April 8, 2017 | Author: | Posted in Football

A gridiron is a grated utensil on which food is broiled over a fire. Hence, figuratively, any network, as of pipes, railway tracks, etc., is called a gridiron. The term was applied to a football field because it is rectangu­lar in shape and is traversed every five yards by white lines, which produce a gridiron effect.

A gridiron dinner is not a dinner cooked on a gridiron. Putting a person on the gridiron is to place him in an uncomfortable position; that is, broiling him over a fire as it were.

The Gridiron Club, composed of a restricted number of Washington newspaper correspond­ents, adopted that name because at its dinners it caricatures and satirizes prominent public persons who are present.

Grid is merely a shortened form of gridiron, which etymologically has nothing to do with iron, being a corruption of gredire, a variant of gredil, the source of griddle.


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