China Unveils Its Evidence

That whole China invented golf story? Well the plot thickens, at least according to Reuters:

An exhibition of three replica paintings depicting nobility playing a golf-like game unveiled at Beijing's Great Hall of the People this week backs the claim that modern golf is derived from an ancient sport called Chuiwan.

The paintings are said to have been stored at Beijing's Imperial Palace Museum and date back to the Yuan (1271-1368) and Ming (1368-1644) dynasties.

"China's ancient Chuiwan, whether in the equipment, the course and the rules -- even in the etiquette -- is very similar to modern golf," Li Yong, deputy secretary of China Golf Association (CGA), told reporters.

"Not only was it played much earlier than (Scotland's) 15th century golf, it's also earlier than other countries' similar ancient golf games. Thus, we can absolutely say that China's ancient Chuiwan is the mother of modern golf."

The replica paintings depict scenes of imperial nobility standing near small, round balls and holding sticks reminiscent of golf clubs.

The other item of evidence offered was a copy of Wan Jing -- a book published in 1282 and reading like a beginner's textbook on golf, according to experts.