Sixty Joyless De-Britished Uncrowned Commonpoor Years (1949-2009)

Elizabeth II Vice-Regal Saint: Remembering Paul Comtois (1895–1966), Lt.-Governor of Québec
Britannic Inheritance: Britain's proud legacy. What legacy will America leave?
English Debate: Daniel Hannan revels in making mince meat of Gordon Brown
Crazy Canucks: British MP banned from Canada on national security grounds
Happy St. Patrick's: Will Ireland ever return to the Commonwealth?
Voyage Through the Commonwealth: World cruise around the faded bits of pink.
No Queen for the Green: The Green Party of Canada votes to dispense with monarchy.
"Sir Edward Kennedy": The Queen has awarded the senator an honorary Knighthood.
President Obama: Hates Britain, but is keen to meet the Queen?
The Princess Royal: Princess Anne "outstanding" in Australia.
H.M.S. Victory: In 1744, 1000 sailors went down with a cargo of gold.
Queen's Commonwealth: Britain is letting the Commonwealth die.
Justice Kirby: His support for monarchy almost lost him appointment to High Court
Royal Military Academy: Sandhurst abolishes the Apostles' Creed.
Air Marshal Alec Maisner, R.I.P. Half Polish, half German and 100% British.
Cherie Blair: Not a vain, self regarding, shallow thinking viper after all.
Harry Potter: Celebrated rich kid thinks the Royals should not be celebrated
The Royal Jelly: A new king has been coronated, and his subjects are in a merry mood
Victoria Cross: Australian TROOPER MARK DONALDSON awarded the VC
Godless Buses: Royal Navy veteran, Ron Heather, refuses to drive his bus
Labour's Class War: To expunge those with the slightest pretensions to gentility
100 Top English Novels of All Time: The Essential Fictional Library
BIG BEN: Celebrating 150 Years of the Clock Tower

Saturday, 8 December 2007

Lord Stanley's Cup

Hockey, or what foreigners call "Ice Hockey", is to Canada what baseball is to America, and cricket is to England. Though other nations play it, and play it well, it is our game. We understand it better than anyone else because we invented it, we mastered it, we raised it to a national art form. We unite over it. The sport has an almost religious significance to Canadians.

Emblematic of this religion is the glorious – nay – the mystical Stanley Cup, commonly referred to as simply "The Cup", "The Holy Grail", or "Lord Stanley’s Mug." In 1892 Governor General Lord Stanley of Preston, a hockey fan, donated this cup (see below), named in his honour, to be awarded to the "champion hockey team in the Dominion of Canada".

Today, the Stanley Cup is the oldest professional sports trophy in North America, and is awarded each year to the top hockey franchise in the National Hockey League (Only six of the thirty NHL franchises are based in Canada, but Canadian players outnumber Americans in the league by a ratio of almost four to one). There is only one official Stanley Cup; it is the only trophy in professional sports that has the names of the winning players, coaches, management, and club staff - now an unbroken annual tradition - engraved upon its chalice as well as its rings and base. Thus its ever growing size and stature, slowly manifesting itself into the statuesque magnificence it represents today.

I will have more on my Crown and Hockey series in the posts to come.

6 comments:

David Byers said...

Canadians should call what we call Hockey "Grass Hockey"

CresceNet said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Scott said...

What?

Or, rather:

Que?

Beaverbrook said...

"The tradition continues"! Lord Stanley, many thanks for this very relevant - yes relevant - first post. I trust you will succeed in connecting our national pastime to the Crown in all future posts as well. Great photo of the Mug, I must say.

My apologies for tinkering around a bit. I'm testing a new feature stolen from another blogger.

Younghusband said...

Not sure why only foreigners would refer to the sport as "ice hockey" as it serves to differentiate it from "real" hockey.

Brendan said...

I've always just said hockey and I was born and raised in the United States. But "ice hockey" or "hockey", the Detroit Red Wings are still the best.