What Is An Albatross In Golf?
An Albatross, along with Double Eagle, is another term for two under par.
Albatross seems to be a relatively recent golf term. Whereas par, bogey and birdie have been used since the 1800s, as late as 1935, Gene Sarazen referred to his double eagle at that year’s Masters as a “dodo.”
An Albatross is a sea bird with wingspans extending up to twelve feet. An albatross named Wisdom, who lives on Midway Island, is thought to be the world’s oldest wild bird, having first been banded in 1956.
I’ve always thought “albatross” a bit strange, for putting an albatross on your scorecard seems unnecessarily similar to having an albatross around your neck. That has a lot of negative connotations, thanks to Samuel Coleridge’s Rime of the Ancient Mariner:
Ah! well-a-day! what evil looks
Had I from old and young!
Instead of the cross, the Albatross
About my neck was hung.”