, or prizefighting
, emerged in the early twentieth century as boxing
gradually attained legitimacy and became a regulated, sanctioned sport. Professional boxing bouts are fought for a purse which is divided among the fighters and promoters as determined by contract. All legal professional bouts must be approved by a state athletic commission to guarantee the fighters' safety. Additionally, most high-profile bouts obtain the endorsement of a private sanctioning body, which awards championships, establishes rules, and assigns referees. Professional bouts are typically much longer than amateur bouts, and can last up to twelve rounds, though less significant fights can be as short as four rounds. Protective headgear is not permitted, and boxers are generally allowed to take substantial punishment before a fight is halted. Professional boxing has enjoyed a much higher profile than amateur boxing
throughout the twentieth century and beyond.
In 1891, the National Sporting Club
(N.S.C.), a private club in London, began to promote professional glove fights at its own premises, and created nine of its own rules to augment the Queensberry Rules
. These rules specified more accurately the role of the officials, and produced a system of scoring that enabled the referee to decide the result of a fight. The British Boxing Board of Control
(B.B.B.C.) was first formed in 1919 with close links to the N.S.C., and was re-formed in 1929 after the N.S.C.... Read More