A billiard table, billiards table, or pool table is a bounded table on which billiards-type games (cue sports) are played. In the modern era, all billiards tables (whether for carom billiards, pool or snooker) provide a flat surface usually made of quarried slate, that is covered with cloth (usually of a tightly-woven worsted wool called baize), and surrounded by vulcanized rubber cushions, with the whole elevated above the floor.More specific terms are used for specific sports, such as snooker table and pool table, and different-sized billiard balls are used on these table types. An obsolete term is billiard board, used in the 16th and 17th centuries.
A pool table, or pocket billiards table (as the sport’s governing body prefers to call it), has six pockets – one at each corner of the table (corner pockets) and one at the midpoint of each of the longer sides (side pockets or middle pockets). Historically, as old engravings show, tables sometimes used to be made with only four pockets, but the rest of this section addresses six-pocket pool tables.
Snooker and English billiards tables
A table designed for the games snooker and English billiards is usually called a snooker table, although more accurately it is in fact a Billiards table (the baulkline is not used in snooker).