Pedestrianism; or, an account of the Performances of celebrated Pedestrians during the last and present century; with a full narrative of Captain Barclay’s public and private matches; and an essay on training.

  • Thom, Walter
  • Aberdeen: Printed by D. Chalmers and Co. for A. Brown [et al] 1813


SKU: 5000 Category: Tag:


FIRST EDITION, 8vo, pp. [ii], 286 + frontispiece. Untrimmed in original plain boards, printed paper label to spine. Some light spotting, title-page and frontispiece offset to each other. Boards a little marked, spine creased and worn at ends. A few marginal calculations in pencil.


Walter Thom (1770-1824) was born in Kincardineshire and moved to Aberdeen where he wrote a history of the city and this celebration of the fad of long-distance walking, with particular attention to Captain Robert Barclay Allardice. The volume is 'an extraordinary survey of records of matches and athletes, and the application of enlightenment thinking to the documentation of sport. Thom's intention was to celebrate the achievements of Captain Barclay, but in order to give Barclay's achievements greater meaning he discussed the athlete's predecessors with a diligence that provides a model for today's sports statisticians' (Julian Walker, BL's Untold Lives blog, 19 July 2016). Scarce in the original boards.

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