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Sports and Games of the 18th and 19th Centuries (Sports & Games Through History) Hardcover – 30 Jan 2003


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"Crego presents an informative overview of 18th- and 19th-century sports and games in seven geopolitical world regions...Crego presents rules of the games and equipment requisite for play, providing readers with the opportunity to re-create the regional sports. A splendid read! Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty and professionals." - Choice --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

ROBERT CREGO is an accomplished sportswriter and long distance runner. This is his first book. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


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Though many of the traditional African sports and games discussed below date back to ancient times, their prevalence throughout the continent was diminished greatly during the 18th and 19th centuries. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Amazon.com: HASH(0x93af1bac) out of 5 stars 1 review
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x93ad32e8) out of 5 stars A shakey job 8 Jun. 2009
By Thinker - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A bit of a bodge job on this one. The book is supposedly about 18th and 19th century sports, but the author cannot seem to unroot himself from the 20th century, and a full 30-40% of this book has nothing to do with its subject. There are numerous errors that could have been fixed by doing better research than reading the miscellaneous drug-store bookshelf offerings listed in the bibliography. First of all, in British sports, rowing, it is not the "Doggett Coat and Dog Race", as it's called in the index, nor is it one of the 'biggest' races on the Thames: It's the Doggett Coat and Badge race and fields 6 competitors, as it has since its inception. The Thames is not a 'calm' river - it's a tidal river, and for the first 75-100 years of the race, the competitors rowed against a strong tide (maybe the author thinks the Thames barrier was invented in the 18th century?). Want to know more about the race? You won't find it here, despite the fact that it's a template for the river wager, a foundational part of 18th and 19th century British rowing. But there's a bunch of stuff about 20th century rowing. Don't expect to read anything about the boats used - he doesn't know. We get a lot of stuff about modern racing shells. Irrelevant.

Similarly the boxing: So, he gets Fleischer's book and a couple of things online. Please do not consider this as anything but a sloppy pass through of bareknuckle fighting. Where's Figg? And Mendoza was not the first to introduce science to the sport, it was Broughton who introduced blocking, stopping, retrograde motion and footwork. George Taylor, 2nd champion, introduced various fencing moves, thrust and parry, into the sport. Mendoza took these a level higher, he did not invent it. Wrestling? Slap-dash, nothing about catch-as-catch can, a basis for wrestling in Britain, Lancashire style or Cornish, again the foundation for much of the country wrestling which formed the backbone of this sport.

But, you can read all you want about sports 'invented' in the 1890s and developed in the 20th century (netball anyone)? including rules. It may have been easier for a lazy author to find, but it is is not the supposed intent of the book, and individuals looking to find ACTUAL data about 18th and 19th century sports will be either mislead, or disappointed.

These are only some examples, and it makes me pretty much disregard the rest of the book as no doubt similarly flawed. Understandably, there are only so many pages to cover these things and it's an overview book, but a great deal of the stuff irrelevant to the subject of the book could have been simply eliminated, and the space used to enlarge upon the original intent of the book, giving readers what they actually came for. The author has a pleasant, economical writing style, he doesn't waste words, he's obviously a professional, but he seems to have written this on his lunch hour, was a lazy researcher, needs a decent editor and a refocussing. He could have done so much better.
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