Golfing Terms - why the birds?

To score one under par in golf is described as getting a 'birdie'. If you get two under it is an 'eagle, and three under is an 'albatross'. The origin on the term birdie is said to go back to a time early last century, when after a score of one under par on a hole, the golfer exclaimed loudly 'what a bird of a shot'.

This term caught on, and in time players scoring one under par came to refer to it as a birdie. Now that the bird theme was introduced, it became a logical sequence to name two under par after a bird, in this case an 'eagle', and three under par after a more rare bird, the 'albatross'.

Related Pages

Popular Pages


Golf Extra

This popular sport has many variations, but what we all want to know is who wins the majors. Improve your game with information about the fitness, nutrition, physics and psychology of golf.

How to Cite