Irish ball game, precursor of field hockey, 1690s, played with a curved stick, also called a bandy (1620s), from bandy (v.) "throw to and fro, strike back and forth."
1570s, "to strike back and forth, throw to and fro," from Middle French bander, from root of band (n.2). The sense apparently evolved from "join together to oppose," to opposition itself, to "exchanging blows," then metaphorically, to volleying in tennis. Related: Bandied; bandying.
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