In 1857 Everard Digby, an extrovert Cambridge scholar, published the first scientific treatise on swimming - and one of the first on any modern sport. Six months later he was expelled from his college, and dies in obscurity as a country parson. Nicholas Orme rehabilitates Digby as a great pioneer of the history of sport.
The book opens with a detailed history of swimming in Britain from the Romans to the sixteenth century, which is followed by an account of Digby's life and work and its impact on swimming down to the eighteenth century.
The book also includes the first modern edition of Digby's treatise, in the English version of 1595, with the 43 original illustrations.