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Origins of spey -

This is just a guess, but I would think that the origins of spey go back to the origins of fly fishing. They used long rods, with a "tapered" line of horsehair (BTW - I have read discussions of "color" being the quick measure of strength) - It was tapered in that it consisted of several strands where it was tied to the tip, and fewer strands as it progressed toward the "angle" (hook of a bent needle, sometimes tied as a fly) , with usually a one or two strand horsehair"tippet". The line was only about as long as the rod.
"Winders" (reels) were invented sometime later, improvements in line, and someone thought up snake guides to retrieve with, progressing to (ugh!) the silk lines and gut leaders of my youth. The fun of fishing with those is another sickening long story.
The only way you can cast one of these long rod-horsehair line tied to tip original jewels comfortably and with any degree of precision is a simple spey-type cast.

Just some thoughts, coupled with some knowledge gleaned from some old books I read in my misspent youth. Don't remember the names, though - but they were old library books, and I read continuously back then.

Have a Happy and Prosperous New Year!

BobK
 
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