Marquess of Queensberry Rules
The modern sport of boxing depends on rules to protect the combatants from serious harm. Prizefighting had no such rules until 1743, when a code of laws was developed by Jack Broughton. These were later enhanced by John Chambers, and in 1867 at the request of John Douglas, the ninth Marquess of Queensbury, were published and applied to the sport.
To be a fair stand-up boxing match in a 24-foot ring, or as near that size as practicable.
- No wrestling or hugging allowed.
- The rounds to be of three minutes' duration, and one minute's time between rounds.
- If either man falls through weakness or otherwise, he must get up unassisted, 10 seconds to be allowed him to do so, the other man meanwhile to return to his corner, and when the fallen man is on his legs the round is to be resumed and continued until the three minutes have expired. If one man fails to come to the scratch in the 10 seconds allowed, it shall be in the power of the referee to give his award in favour of the other man.
- A man hanging on the ropes in a helpless state, with his toes off the ground, shall be considered down.
- No seconds or any other person to be allowed in the ring during the rounds.
- Should the contest be stopped by any unavoidable interference, the referee to name the time and place as soon as possible for finishing the contest; so that the match must be won and lost, unless the backers of both men agree to draw the stakes.
- The gloves to be fair-sized boxing gloves of the best quality and new.
- Should a glove burst, or come off, it must be replaced to the referee's satisfaction.
- A man on one knee is considered down and if struck is entitled to the stakes.
- No shoes or boots with springs allowed.
- The contest in all other respects to be governed by revised rules of the London Prize Ring. See London Prize Ring rules.
These Rules have since
been greatly updated, and the Modern Rules of Boxing
are considered to make the sport as safe as possible, given its nature. The "Queensbury Rules", however, were responsible for bring an element of civilisation to an otherwise savage sport.