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(©fforir anir Cambriirg^ §0at-^act, 

FROM THE YEAR 1 829 TO 1 869, 




JOHN ED. MORGAN, M.D., M.A. OxoN., F.R.C.P. 


"Row and work, boys of England, on rivers and seas. 
And the old land shall hold, firm as ever, her own. 


'Eonlron : 



[All RighU Jlfeserved,\ 

26?. J-. /S^. 









The following pages contain the results of an enquiry 
into the after health of University Oars, which has 
been carried out with more or less interruption during 
the last four years. It was commenced in the spring of 
the year 1869. I then hoped to obtain the information 
which I needed in the course of twelve or eighteen 
months, but I soon found that the labour which I had 
undertaken was likely to prove more arduous and more 
tedious than I had anticipated. A certain portion of 
the rowers still retained their names on the Collie 
Books ; but many (39) were dead, and a still larger 
number had disappeared, and whither they had directed 
their steps it was no easy matter to ascertain. When, 
therefore, I had applied to all their surviving fellow- 
Oarsmen without avail, and when also I had written to 
many of their College contemporaries without discover- 
ing any trace of their habitation, I had no resource left 
but to search the different town and county Directories. 
Twenty-seven of the Oars had, however, gone abroad, or 
emigrated, and were either residing in our Colonies or in 
other parts of the world, and the only method I could 
discover of obtaining information regarding several of 


them, was to write to persons bearing the same name 
in this country. Moreover when I had actually suc- 
ceeded in obtaining the addresses of those who were 
missing it was not always easy to extract a reply 
to my troublesome enquiries. That such should be the 
case was nothing more than might be anticipated, as 
questions respecting health, proceeding from a complete 
stranger, must always be looked ^ upon with a certain 
amount of suspicion. The subject of our ails and our 
aches is a somewhat delicate one. When therefore my 
hygienic appeals were consigned to the fire or the waste 
paper basket, it seemed a politic measure to allow some 
time to elapse ere I renewed my importunate requests, 
while at the same time I endeavoured to obtain through 
the assistance of common friends, or some of our leading 
rowing authorities, either a personal introduction, or at 
all events some recognition of the importance of my 

Another difficulty with which I have had to contend 
has arisen from the numerous inaccuracies which more 


or less pervade all the lists of the University Oarsmen, 
inaccuracies which very materially detract from the 
value of those records. I have learnt also from painful 
experience that neither the University Calendars nor 
the College Books can be implicitly trusted. The mis- 
placement or alteration of initial letters, and the mis- 
spelling of surnames, virtually substitute some illegiti- 
mate stranger for the rightful possessor of an Oar. 
These and similar reasons will I believe serve as some 


apology for the length of time occupied in making this 
enquiry, more especially as the work has been carried on 
in the few leisure hours I could snatch from the toils 
of an arduous and exacting profession. Had I, in the 
case of some twenty or twenty-five men, contented my- 
self with the accounts I received from contemporaries 
and friends, without searching on in quest of those still 
missing till one by one they were discovered, the 
results of this enquiry ihight have appeared some two 
years sooner. I have, however, felt strongly that the 
whole valye of such an investigation must depend upon 
its being exhaustive ; and when I mention the fact that 
out of the 255 Oarsmen who were alive at the end of the 
year 1869, I have succeeded in obtaining letters from 
25 1, it will be admitted that it would not be practicable 
to have carried the enquiry very much farther. Three 
of those from whom I have not received letters belong 
to the University of Oxford, and one is a graduate of 
Cambridge. To each of them I have addressed several 
communications, but hitherto without avail. Another 
old Oar, though he has favoured me with full particulars 
regarding his health, has requested me to refrain from 
publishing his name. In numerous cases I have re- 
ceived the information I solicited through the assistance 
of kind friends and well-known authorities in all that 
relates to the University Boat-Race. Although it is 
perhaps somewhat invidious to mention particular names 
when so many have assisted, I still cannot refrain from 
specially thanking my brother, the Rev. H. A. Morgan, 


Jesus College, Cambridge, Mr Charles Stuart Parker; 
M.P., Mr Halifax Wyatt, Mr Smyly, Mr S. D. Darbi- 
shire, Mr George Morrison, the Rev. Arthur Shadwell, 
and Mr Thomas Selby Egan; besides a very large 
number of clergymen who have rendered me much 
help in tracing old Oars who happened at any time 
to have been located in their respective parishes. To 
the clergy, therefore, among whose ranks may be 
found a large number of the most accomplished dis- 
ciples of the Bat and the Oar which the Universities 
have turned out, I am deeply indebted for the kindness 
and courtesy which they have invariably extended to 
me. Press of business has frequently prevented me 
from acknowledging letters at the time they were re- 
ceived. I would now beg to offer my apologies to my 
correspondents for such apparent neglect, and to return 
them my sincere thanks for their disinterested kind- 

The Inter-University Races from 1829 to 1869 (both 
years included) will be found chronologically arranged 
and dealt with separately, in the following manner : 
after a short description of each Race and a list of the 
Oarsmen who took part therein, I have considered the 
life-expectation of the united Crews (16 men in all), and 
summarized the effects of Rowing on their after health. 
This summary is succeeded by extracts from the letters 
of the surviving Rowers in due order, those passages 
being selected in which the writers refer to their own 
personal experience. In some instances, however, in 


which Special interest seems to attach to what is said, 
either from the position now occupied by an old Oan 
or from the nature of his communication, I have inserted 
the remainder of the letter in a separate portion of 
this work; where also will be found some remarks on 
training and rowing by the Rev. H. A. Morgan, who, 
during a twenty years' residence at Cambridge, has seen 
much of Boat-racing and its effects. I have moreover 
been favoured with contributions from those two distin- 
guished coxswains, Mr Thomas Selby Egan and the Rev. 
Arthur Shadwell, whose devotion to the art of Rowing, 
acquaintance among old Oars, and success in training 
some of the most finished University Crews, render 
any expression of opinion coming from them peculiarly 

At the time when my investigations were com- 
menced it appeared to me that the omission of all names 
would enable me to discuss the subject with less re- 
serve, and in some few of the letters which I addressed 
to my earlier correspondents, I spoke of adopting this 
plan. Many of them however objected to the arrange- 
ment, some wishing to know how it had fared with their 
old shipmates, others considering that much greater 
weight would attach to these statistics if the personal 
experience of each rower were backed up by his name 
and signature. In all cases, therefore, where rowing was 
not supposed to be attended with injurious results, I 
decided to yield to their wishes and to insert the names, 
taking care at the same time to obtain the permission 


of the writers. As, however, there may be several to 
whom I have inadvertently omitted to communicate 
my change of plan, I have taken this opportunity of 
explaining to them the reasons which induced me to 
alter my intentions. 

Where however there seemed grounds for suspecting 
that rowing had been attended with more or less serious 
consequences, I have omitted the names of the supposed 
sufferers, and merely discussed their ailments in general 
terms ; taking care to give no clue to the writer, but 
merely affixing to each case, by way of distinction, a 
letter of the alphabet. I also carefully excluded from the 
published letters all personal allusions or remarks calcu- 
lated in any way to cause annoyance, to the surviving 
Oarsmen or to the friends of those who are no longer 
alive. It must not, however, be assumed that in all 
cases where the name of a living Oarsman is not sup- 
plemented by a letter, he has necessarily sustained some 
injury from his exertions, for it must be remembered 
that four or five of the rowers have withheld their per- 
sonal testimony from me, though, through the courtesy 
of their friends and fellow-Oarsmen, I have been supplied 
with all needful particulars regarding the effects of 
training and Boat-racing on their health. 

I have endeavoured to discuss this much vexed 
question in an honest and impartial spirit. I entered on 
the enquiry without any personal bias in the matter, 
and although in the replies with which I have been 
favoured such passages as the following not unfrequently 


occur: "if you are endeavouring to prove that Boat- 
racing is followed by dangerous consequences, I consider 
it very probable that you will fail in your object," I 
must emphatically disclaim any such intention, having 
undertaken this investigation solely from a desire to 
throw some light on an important physiological problem, 
a question which causes deep anxiety to all those who 
are interested in the welfare of the rising generation. 
Many persons entertain so profound a dread of the 
University Boat-Race and similar trials of strength and 
endurance, that it is no unusual thing to overhear pro- 
phetic lamentations over the ephemeral bloom of these 
apparently stalwart champions of the Oar. My statistics 
are I believe calculated to dispel all such gloomy fore- 
bodings, and to show that the hardy disciples of the 
Isis and the Cam may fairly dispute the palm of health 
and longevity with their less active commiserators. 

I would here remind my readers of a leading article 
which appeared in the Times of October the 15th, 1867 
(when a somewhat lively correspondence had been ex- 
cited by the able letters of the late Mr Skey), and 
from which I quote the following remarks : "The con- 
troversy excited by Mr Skey's letter to this journal, 
may be productive of great benefit, if it elicits the facts 
which can alone decide it When an eminent surgeon 
appeals to his own experience and that of his professional 
brethren in support of the opinion that many a con- 
stitution is injured by the University Boat-Races, his 
protest cannot be set aside by allegations of 'palpable 


ignorance/ The first question is not, as one of our 
correspondents seems to imagine, whether Mr Skey 
understands the principles and practice of rowing, but 
whether its effects are such as he describes in a minority 
of cases ; and, if so, in how large a minority. Now, this 
is a question upon which no evidence but medical evi- 
dence can be of much value. Young men soon lose sight 
of their former contemporaries at School and College; and 
if they happen to hear in after life that one has suc- 
cumbed from heart complaint, and another broken down 
from exhaustion of the nervous system, they seldom 
think of coupling these calamities with over-exertion in 
athletic sports. 'The evil,* according to Mr Skey, 
*is not immediate, but remote.' It is but a seed of 
disease which may or may not germinate, and it is for 
doctors and physiologists to ascertain how often it does 
germinate. On the other hand, it does not appear that 
any statistical inquiry into the subject has ever been 
made by the medical professi9n. Had such an inquiry 
been made, Mr Skey would not have failed to quote its 
results, instead of referring to '*some cases" which he 
had witnessed himself, and "several more" of which he 
had heard. Twenty-four regular University Boat-Races 
have now been rowed, of which eighteen were over the 
present course, five over the course from Westminster 
to Putney, and one over the Henley course. Allowing 
for those who may have rowed more than once^ the 
number of persons who have taken part in the 
contests must considerably exceed lOO, besides the 


many hundreds or thousands who have within the 
same period gone through an almost equally trying 
ordeal in College races. If we knew the proportion of 
these University Champions who have since died, or 
become disabled, and if we also knew the mean per- 
centage of mortality and illness among men of the same 


age within the same period, we should be in a position 
to judge, with some approach to certainty, whether these 
matches do or do not tend to shorten life and weaken 
the constitution. As it is, Mr Skey's warning is founded 
in a great degree on presumptions, the grounds of which 
are disputed by his opponents." 

It will be seen from the foregoing extract that at 
the time this correspondence was carried on, such 
statistics as those which I have collected were felt to be 
needed, but did not then exist. 

Though this inquiry has occupied no inconsiderable 
portion of my leisure hours during the last three or four 
years, and though its prosecution has necessitated the 
writing of upwards of two thousand letters, still the 
whole work has been a labour of love, prompted by a 
pure affection for rowing, and by a deep-rooted conviction 
that in these days of incessant mental tension and in- 
tellectual excitement of every kind, we should not allow 
so manly and health-giving an exercise to be unjustly 

For the satisfactory treatment of this subject two 
qualifications seemed to me to be imperatively demanded. 
First, some knowledge of physiology ; and second, some 


acquaintance with the art of Rowing as it is practised at 
our Universities. To both of these qualifications I may 
lay some slight claim. As physician to a large hos- 
pital, I have necessarily enjoyed large opportunities of 
gaining an insight into the laws which regulate our 
health ; while my rowing experience began at Shrewsbury 
(where I spent many a pleasant hour on the Severn), 
and was matured at University College, Oxford, where 
I was for three years captain of the John +, a boat which 
has often played a prominent part in the struggles of 
the Isis, and which has served as the training-school for 
no fewer than ten of the Crews which during the last 
thirty years have won the University Fours. 


I, St Peter's Square, Manchester, 
March y 1873. 



Page 64. J^ ««one in 11-3, about nine per cent, a second," read " eleven, 
or one in 13*3, about seven and a half per cent., a second." 
„ 65. /Jtt "two were second in first class," read "three were second 

in first class." 
» 173- J^or "J. F. M«Dougall, read *'F. T. M«Dougall." 
„ 175- ^or "F. J. M«Dougal," read ** F. T. M«Dougall." 
„ t^. For " Roberts Ross, (of Bladensbei^,)" read " Robert S. Ross 
of Bladensbei^." 

zincs "vie with each'otner m v;ixiuiiiv.ititg v*.w 

particulars regarding victors and vanquished, and there 
are champions of the oar and the cricket-field whose 
achievements are more familiar to the rising genera- > 
tion than those of any general, statesman, or poet who 
ever adorned the pages of English history. 

Whatever may be thought of this spread of athle-' 1 

ticism, and worship of muscle, one thing is certain, that 
even those who are unable to sympathize with such 
pastimes must still accept them as established facts — 
must look upon them as recreations which have taken 
so firm a hold upon the public mind that no amount 
/.-> U.o. I 


of preaching will lessen their attractions, and no amount 
of indiscriminate warning from medical authorities 
without more particular inquiries will ever do much to 
loosen their hold upon the youth of Great Britain. 

Viewing athletic contests then as national institu- 
tions, what is their influence upon health? Are they 
calculated to improve the physique of our population? 
to make men stronger and longer lived? or is such 
violent exercise in early life more likely seriously to 
undermine the constitution, entailing after effects both 
painful and serious? That many of these contests 
prove at times sufficiently trying, those who have parr 
ticipated in them will readily admit. A ten or twelve 
miles* run with " fox and hounds," a three mile steeple- 
chase, a long innings at cricket, a hard Boat- Race, all 
severely tax the strongest muscles ; and so long as these 
games continue to be practised as they are practised at 
the present day, when those who excel are continually 
pitted against each other in a generous spirit of emula- 
tion, when school meets school, and University sends 
out its chosen representatives to do battle with its sister 
University at Lord's and at Putney, so long will they be 
taken up and carried through with true British per- 
severance and pluck. That it should be so, is nothing 
more than might be anticipated ; for surely there is no 
Englishman, and indeed very few Englishwomen, who, 
on seeing their son engage in such a struggle, trivial 
though they may fain deem it, would not blush to 
acknowledge him if he displayed any want of courage 
or failed to exert himself for the time to the utmost of 
his strength. 

But what are the after effects of all this violent 
exercise? This is a subject on which much has been 
written, indeed it has been taken up on several occasions 


with no small degree of warmth : by some it has been 
maintained that the sufferings entailed by such a struggle 
as the University Boat- Race far outweigh any benefits 
which may result from the exercise; that there is no 
modern example of cruelty to animals so great as that 
exhibited in this annual contest ; and that the young 
man who aspires for such laurels deliberately casts in 
his lot for death or victory, perhaps for both. 

Such is the language of the censors of these pas- 
times. To support their assertions they bring forward 
the case of a boat which one hot summer's day rowed 
from Oxford to London, and although the crew were 
all sturdy and robust men when that disastrous voyage 
was undertaken, five short years beheld them the sorry 
wreck of what they oiice had been, and in another fiver 
they were all consigned to an untimely grave. The 
heart must be a hard one which could refuse to be 
moved by so harrowing a tale, and with good reason 
may the British mother bewail the murder of her inrio" 
cents and denounce the callous indifference of those to 
whom their education is entrusted. As a further proof 
of the dangers which result from excessive muscular 
exercise, it has been usual to point to the after lives of 
the champions of the prize ring, who at an early age, it 
is alleged, lose their constitutional vigour and become 
prematurely broken down in health. We hear also, on 
somewhat doubtful testimony, that the athletes of ancient 
Greece rarely attained the blessings of a green old age. 

On such and somewhat similar grounds are the 
objections to these pastimes generally founded. The 
men of muscle, on the other hand, judging from their 
own personal experience, no less than from their obser- 
vation of others, unhesitatingly maintain, that although 
in some few cases injury may result from such violent 



exertions, still, on the whole, the consequences are 
rather beneficial than detrimental to health ; and in 
dealing with the casualties which are said to have oc- 
curred they require information somewhat more exact. 
They would fain learn the names of the crew who so 
miserably perished, the particular circumstances under 
which the feat was accomplished, and the year in which 
it took place. In the case of prize-fighters also, whose 
span of days has been deplorably curtailed, they would 
enquire whether these men live with that care and 
sobriety which might entitle them to look forward to 
a hale old age; and lastly, they make bold to ask 
whether the statements regarding the Greek athletes 
of old rest on any surer foundation than those concern- 
ing our own University Oarsmen. 

It has always appeared to me that although each 
side supports, with the utmost confidence, its own view 
of the case, we do not possess those statistics which 
would alone enable us to come to a just conclusion. And 
seeing that our knowledge of the after effects of exces- 
sive muscular exercise was so scanty and unsatisfactory, 
it occurred to me on the last occasion when this contro- 
versy was rife, that there was but one way in which it 
was possible to discuss this question with a certain de- 
gree of authority, and that was by enquiring into the 
after health of some one of the various orders of athletes 
who have in early life devoted a large portion of their 
time to the development of muscle, and by learning 
from them what has been their personal experience, whe- 
ther as years come round they feel themselves more and 
more exhausted and decrepit, in a word, prematurely 
used up ; or whether they are still able to look forward 
to life's future with a fair amount of cheerfulness and 


In considering what form of athleticism might most 
usefully be investigated, whether as regards its imme- 
diate effects on health or those which may be developed 
in after years, Boat-Racing and the training connected 
with it seemed best calculated to serve the purpose that 
I had in view. For certainly no men are better entitled 
to speak authoritatively on the subject of hard exercise 
and its effects on health than the University Oarsmen of 
Oxford and Cambridge; it is against the great Race 
in which the Universities annually compete at Putney 
that the strongest denunciations have been levied ; these 
are the men who, before all others, have been consigned 
to premature decay and an untimely grave, whose sad 
fate has been blazoned forth to point a moral or adorn 
a tale. 

The men also who engage in that contest belong to 
a class who, from their position, may reasonably be (ex- 
pected to shape their habits agreeably to those laws 
which are justly deemed conducive to health and length 
of days. They would hot, as is too often the case with 
athletic champions in lower walks of life, be ensnared 
into the convivial excesses of decayed prize-fighters or 
the pot-house orgies of acrobatic heroes. At the same 
time, while their number was amply sufficient to supply 
data whereon to build trustworthy statistics, it was still 
not so great as to render such an enquiry as that which 
I have undertaken impracticable from the tedious labour 
it would have involved in collecting the necessary in- 
formation. For these reasons the University Oarsmen 
seemed specially qualified to answer the particular ques- 
tion on which I desired to throw the light of ascertained 

That question, as expressed in letters which I have 
written to those of them who in the year 1869 were 


yet alive, was simply this : " Whether the training and 
exertion demanded of those who take part in the Uni- 
versity Boat-Race are of so trying a character that in 
numerous instances the constitution is liable to be per- 
manently injured ? '* 

Several of my correspondents have suggested that 
such an enquiry would prove more valuable if the 
different College crews at the two Universities were 
likewise included in its scope. They point out that the 
University crews are usually selected with very great 
care, and that consequently such Oarsmen must be 
looked upon as more than usually robust; and further, 
that the men are always carefully trained for the work 
before them ; whilst among the various College eights 
often the rowers are not only deficient in stamina and 
strength, but very imperfectly prepared for the struggle 
of the race. 

Though bound by the quarters from which they 
proceed to treat such suggestions with every respect, 
I would still reply that I should not think of denying 
that men who are wanting in physical power, or im- 
perfectly trained, are unfit to engage in such a contest 
as a hard Boat-Race, inasmuch as they do not undertake 
the work on those conditions on which alone it can 
safely be carried through. Besides, the number of those 
who have competed in College races is so great, and the 
names of these aquatic competitors have been preserved 
with so little care, that I should not envy the nian who 
attempts to discover their present habitations, or to 
trace their after careers, more especially if the enquiry is 
to be thoroughly exhaustive. The question however with 
which I am concerned, is not whether some men who 
never were fit to enter a racing boat at times pay the 
penalty for their folly, nor yet whether those who are 


imperfectly trained occasionally suffer — ^both these pro- 
positions I am prepared to admit; but whether when 
the severe work involved in rowing in a University Race 
is undertaken by strong men, in whom is no tendency to 
hereditary disease, who are accustomed to take proper 
care of themselves, and at the same time are carefully 
prepared for their labours, whether such men, fulfilling 
their allotted task under these conditions, do, in a cer- 
tain proportion of cases, experience irretrievable injury 
from the exertions of their youth ; and if they do suffer, 
is the injury of such a character as to be unavoidable 
by any expenditure of foresight and care ? Or, can it 
be shewn that it is possible to surround the hardest ath- 
letic contests by such safeguards, both as regards the 
selection of the men and their preparation, as shall make 
these contests not only thoroughly healthy, but, in so 
far as they tend to improve our national physique, really 
useful recreations ? 

In discussing this subject I shall first consider the 
cases of those who, either on their own testimony or 
on that of their relations and friends, sustained more or 
less injury from the training and exertion connected 
with the University Race ; and, with a view of sifting 
more thoroughly the nature of that injury and weigh- 
ing the particulars with somewhat less reserve, I pro- 
pose to omit all names in this portion of the enquiry. 

After discussing the cases of injury which are said to 
have occurred among University Oars, I will proceed to 
consider whether the lives of those who have com- 
peted in these contests are on an average shorter than 
those of healthy Englishmen who avoid such excesses ; 
and thirdly, whether, among those no longer alive, the 
diseases from which death has resulted were of such a 
character as are likely to be induced by hard muscular 


exercise, and have happened in more numerous in- 
stances' than among young men of a corresponding 
period of life who do not indulge in athletics. 

In enumerating the cases of injury, I have confined 
myself to those in which the evil results are spoken of 
as more or less serious; as having, in fact, sensibly 
affected the after health. 

A careful analysis of these cases seems to me to shew 
that if harm really was done by too great a strain being 
laid upon the system in early life, that harm may gene- 
rally be accounted for either by the existence of consti- 
tutional unsoundness, or by some deviation from the 
commonly accepted laws of health and prudence. 

Thus, for example, in several cases the suflfering was 
confessedly due to the fact that the men rowed when 
they were not in a fit state of health ; in others, to the 
rowers being by nature constitutionally delicate ; and in 
others again, to their having thoroughly overdone it, to 
their being in boating language "stale." 

As regards the number of those who are said to 
have injured themselves, I find that from the year 
1829 to 1869, both years included, 294 men have rowed 
in the Inter-University Race; of these 294 Oars, 17 either 
describe themselves or are spoken of by their relations 
and friends, — in some instances certainly with very 
considerable reservation — as having suffered from their 
labours to the extent indicated in the following extracts. 

A., who pulled upwards of 30 years ago, informs me 
that while rowing in the College races he suffered from a 
bad cold and pain in the angle of his chest near his 
right shoulder. In spite of the pain he continued to 
row, and it gradually passed off. The following spring 
he experienced a severe chill from travelling outside a 
coach when hot and tired: the breathing became af- 


fected, and an attack of inflammation of the right lung 
ensued. This illness was a very protracted one, and he 
was assured by one of the physicians who attended him 
that there was a permanent induration at the top of the 
right lung which had set in when he was at college. 
My correspondent assures me that for the last 20 years 
he has had no return of his indisposition (but once when 
living in damp air). If the induration of the right lung 
which was observed in A.'s case really commenced at 
the time he experienced pain in rowing in the College 
races, then possibly the mischief arose from his pull- 
ing at a time when he was suffering from a bad cold. 
The chill, however, which he felt in travelling outside a 
coach the following spring when hot and tired, which 
was succeeded by inflammation of the right lung, was 
quite enough to account for any induration which may 
have been observed. If, however, the chest disorder 
did really commence while A. was rowing in the Col- 
lege races, then assuredly his own explanation is quite 
sufficient satisfactorily to account for it ; for he re- 
marks, that he was induced to row from the fact that 
his giving up would probably have disarranged the 
crews of several boats, and caused each one, perhaps, 
to be bumped; and, as he truly observes, "it must 
be something very severe to induce a plucky fellow 
to give in under these circumstances." In this case, 
then, if injury did result from boat-racing, it was due 
to the fact that the exertion was undertaken at a 
time when, in consequence of indisposition, A. was not 
in a fit state to row. 

The next instance I shall adduce is that of B. ; who 
also rowed in the University Race upwards of 20 years 
ago. In referring to his own boating experience, he 
writes as follows: "I am unfortunately an illustration of 


the evils which may be induced by over exercise. I am 
41 years of age and quite obsolete from an hyper- 
trophied heart (I believe), which has gone on to dilata- 
tion and its consequences. Nevertheless, in the absence' 
of any statistics to the contrary, I strongly suspect that 
I am an exceptional case, and my aquatic career was 
not quite analogous to that of most University men." 
Several of my correspondents who rowed with B. allude 
to the state of his health, and concur in the opinion that 
he was not fit to row at the time he undertook the 
Putney race. One of them thus expresses himself: "B., 
who rowed in my crew, had (it was believed) always 
suffered from heart complaint. He is now living, and 
it was with great reluctance we permitted him to row/ 
and did all we could to dissuade him ; he had this com- 
plaint when he came to the University." Here then 
likewise it must be admitted that at the time the 
race was rowed, and probably before, B, was not fi't to 
engage in a contest which it has been said taxes to the 
utmost extent all the strength of the system for up- 
wards of twenty minutes. 

C, who rowed comparatively lately, is another in- 
stance of a man having pulled at a time when his health 
was not in all respects satisfactoiy. I extract the fol- 
lowing passage from his letter : " About a week before 
the race I felt a pain in my left arm as if I had got 
rheumatism, and it became rather stiff till after the race, 
and then severe inflammation set in, in the elbow-joint, 
followed by abscesses ; and, after three months in bed, 
pieces of bone came away, and I' had the elbow-joint 
excised, and my arm is still stiff. I attribute all this to 
the fact that I had rowed very hard at Henley and in 
the fours, and was in fact what is commonly called 
*'5tale ;" my general health always has been, and still is. 


excellent. My arm is the only damaged part." These 
words are confirmed by one of his friends, who remarks : 
" I feel certain that the Putney race alone would not 
have brought on the inflammation that ensued. C. 
was a man who had never had any rest from hard 
training and racing for at least two years previous to 
his being put into the eight ; besides going in for 
every race at the University, he was always at Henley 
with his College crews, and so he entered upon the 
University training in an already exhausted state." 
Had C. given up rowing when he first experienced pain 
in his elbow-joint, it is probable that inflammation of so 
severe a type would not have supervened. 

I shall next consider the cases of six old Oars who 
have died since their rowing days — five of them from 
consumption, and one from heart diseaise. How far 
they suffered from their labours on the river it is not 
very easy to decide, but it will be seen from the fol- 
lowing extracts from letters which I have received from 
some of their nearest surviving relatives, that more or 
less grave suspicions are entertained that the diseases 
which carried them off were originally induced by their 
over exerting themselves in rowing during their College 
days. Generally speaking, they do not appear to have 
been men of that physical vigour which a long Boat- 
Race necessarily requires. 

Such a man, I should imagine, was D., who pulled 
in one of the early races, and died not many years 
ago of consumption; it is said of. him that "His ill- 
health and delicacy were certainly supposed to have 
arisen originally from the bursting of a blood-vessel 
through his exertions in rowing, either in the practice 
for the Inter-University Race or in the race itself." 
Some of these contemporaries thus refer to his physique : 


"He was a pale sallow, wiry man, whom I often ob- 
served to gasp painfully after great exertion, with a dis- 
tressed and anxious look about the eye. He however 
only died two or three years ago." Another of his 
fellow-oarsmen says : " D. was a very fine oar, but he 
always gave me the idea of being an unsound man ; 
he was always pallid, and looked ghastly after a long 
and severe turn; I often used to think him likely to 
break down in training." 

E., to whom I shall next refer, also died of con- 
sumption. One of his near relations sends me the 
following account of his aquatic career : "He was a very 
successful oar, and rowed a great deal at school and 
afterwards in the University. Probably the failure of 
his health did not take place till so long after he had 
given up rowing as to be of little or no service in main- 
taining the theory of rowing being injurious to the 
health. At the same time I have never doubted that his 
early death, at the age of twenty-nine, was due to boat- 
racing. No other member of his family, so far as I am 
aware, has broken down in the same way." A mem* 
ber of his crew writes : *' He had always a delicate look 
'about him, though a wiry and powerful oarsman." 
This opinion is confirmed by one of his intimate friends, 
who speaks of him in these words : " In my dear 
friend's case, I believe that life may possibly have been 
shortened by rowing ; but there is little doubt the seeds 
of disease were always in him, and would have borne 
their deadly fruit, though had he exerted himself less 
it might have been longer in coming to maturity." 

Another old oarsman who died of an affection of the 
chest some twelve years after the race, may perhaps 
have injured himself. Several of his contemporaries 
and his own brother do not think that he did, but 


his father speaks more dubiously. These are his 
words : ** I cannot say that F.'s exertions and train- 
ing, which I had great misgiving about, and rowing 
in the Oxford and Cambridge Boat-Race, told injuri- 
ously, visibly, and positively upon, his health. But my 
fears at the time told me that they must necessarily 
do so, and I warned him accordingly. I could not feel 
assured that the excessive training and racing could be 
safely undertaken by a growing and undeveloped con- 
stitution, not robust, though elastic and sound ; he was 
over six feet, thin and spare ; his illness was at first the 
result of cold, and did not come on till two or three 
years after his rowing at the University." 

G., of whom I shall next speak, died of consump- 
tion some four years after he pulled in the Putney race. 
Several of the members of his crew speak of him as a 
constitutionally delicate man. One writes : **G. died of 
hereditary consumption, which had already carried off 
all the members of his family." Another says: "Whether 
his death was in any way to be traced to his exertions 
in the University Race I am unable to assert ; but from 
my general observation of his constitution, I should say 
that his physique was not such as to stand with im- 
punity the wear and tear of these contests. His exer- 
tions were of a more than ordinarily trying character, 
for he had participated in many severe races both on 
the Thames and at Henley. And he was a man, almost 
of all men, the least likely to spare himself" Another 
correspondent writes: "He was one of a family all of 
whom died in the same way, at younger ages than his 

H.'s aquatic career was in many respects similar. 
One who rowed with him says: "He was known to be 
consumptive at the. time of the race." Another member 


of his crew confirms the opinion that he was not consti- 
tutionally a strong man, and further remarks : "H. died 
within a very few years of the race; whether his exer- 
tions in rowing hastened his death I cannot say, but 
from what I knew of him I should say that his constitu- 
tion was by no means a strong one." 

If J., who rowed about 30 years ago, was injured 
by rowing, his case may probably be classed under the 
head I am now considering. One of his relations has 
sent me the following account of his early and sudden 
decease : " He was found dead in his bed on a Monday 
morning after a long continuous Sunday duty : he 
appears to have gone without a struggle or suffering. 
I can assure you that neither I nor any of his family 
were able to state or feel convinced that his death was 
the result of his previous exertions. He certainly was 
an enthusiast in the sport, and I often saw him very 
seriously exhausted. It is probable that we all had a 
feeling that these exertions may have tended to the 
result, but if you can understand — none of us put it into 
words — it may have dwelt in our thoughts." One of 
his fellow oarsmen speaks of him as "a well-built fresh 
and strong man, but with too ruddy and hectic a look 
about him." 

I shall now refer to five cases of supposed injury, 
where although the men appear to have been strong 
they would still seem to have over-exerted themselves 
and to have unduly taxed their strength. Among these 
cases I would include K., who has sent me the following 
account of his boating experience: "I rowed in a great 
many races, in several while yet a boy at school ; when 
I rowed at Putney I was 20 years of age. I experi- 
enced soon after this severe pain in the region of the 
heart and was thoroughly done up, was forbidden to 



walk up hills, and told that unless I was very careful 
I should never get over it However, I did take care, 
and have been gradually recovering strength ever since*. 
Though I was never incapacitated from ordinary em- 
ployments, still I was prevented from engaging in any 
violent exercise from the certainty with which it brought 
on the old pain at the apex of the heart. I am now 
44 years old and in remarkably good health, and my 
numerous children are all healthy ; one has distinguish- 
ed himself as an athlete and inherits all my muscle and 
sinew. I can walk ten or twelve miles without any 
trouble, and. have preached two sermons every Sunday 
with but few months' intermission for just twenty years. 
Still my heart is weak, though I have no organic disease. 
I am under the impression that if I transgressed any- 
thing like moderation in exercise I should be the worse 
for it. I just remember my doctor saying it might 
not be the rowing after all. I had grown fast — was 
6 feet 2\ in. at nineteen, though strong and muscular. 
At the same time, the conclusion I should come to 
in my own case is that I over-exerted myself tco 
young, and hacf I begun when I left off growing, or a 
year or two later, I should not have experienced any 
evil effects." 

Another man who certainly over-rowed himself was 
L. His aquatic career was comparatively recent. In 
a letter which I have received from him, in speak- 
ing of his health, he uses these words : " For myself 
I have for the last three years suffered much from 
having over-exerted myself, and have only just begun 
to feel that I am beginning to go up hill again. I 
should not think of attributing my ill-health to the 
University Race^ when I know what a very small pro- 
portion the energy expended and the exhaustion con- 




ssi|uent on it can bear to that due to th6 combined 
efifect of other races in which I have rowed and other 
forms of violent exercise in which I have overtaxed 
my strength," 

M. also would appear to have done too much. 
His brother says of him: "I have no doubt M. se- 
riously injured his health by over-exertion in rowing 
and running: he was very strong and steady, but an 
enthusiast in everything he undertook. He imagined 
nothing could hurt him, but soon after leaving the 
University he fell into bad health, and died some eighteen 
years after the race : he attributed his ill-health to over 
exertion. It was the continuance for too great a length 
of time of boat-racing that did him so much injury/* 

N. also is believed to have suffered ; he rowed in the 
eight upwards of thirty years ago. One of his near rela- 
tions writes : " After the University Race he fainted 
away, and it was two hours before they could restore 
him : it was always thought that the part he took in 
the race injured a small vessel at the heart: previous to 
that he had been a particularly strong muscular man. 
Eleven years after the Boat-Race he was suddenly taken 
ill and died in a few days." N. is said to have been a 
much older man than any of the rest of the crew. 

In a letter which I have received from O., who rowed 
some 25 years ago, he thus speaks of his health. " When 
I went to the University I was strong and very healthy ; 
my weight was a little over 12 stone. I began rowing 
at once in my College boat, and also in the University 
crew both at Putney and Henley. I lost about a stone 
in weight during my rowing career, but did not feel 
any ill effects until after my last race, when I became 
very weak with pain in my side. One doctor whom 
I consulted attributed these symptoms to the over 


exertion and hard training I had undergone, but coa-: 
sidered there was no serious mischief. I recovered from 
this attack in time, and since then have enjoyed fairly 
good health, though I have gradually lost weight and 
become very weak. Three years ago, after taking a 
little more exercise than usual, I brought up a great 
quantity of blood. This, my medical man said, came 
from the left lung. Though I became thinner, I ex- 
perienced no return of the bleeding until last June, when 
I had another and much sharper attack. I could not 
trace this to any unusual exertion. I ^m thankful to 
say that I have had no further sjrmptoms of the same 
kind, though I feel at times considerable difficulty in 
breathing, and am weaker than I was before." 

In describing the injurious effects which have been 
set down to the University Race, it is proper that I 
should refer to the cases of three of the old Oars, who 
appear to have enjoyed excellent health during the 
whole of their boating careers, and so long as they were 
taking hard exercise, but to have suffered from the re- 
action when they gave up such pursuits and settled down 
to a sedentary life. P.'s was one of these cases: "During 
the five or six years," he says, "in which I rowed at Col- 
lege and afterwards in London, I always enjoyed the very 
best health, with a feeling that the exercise which I was 
taking agreed with me entirely. Upon my giving up 
rowing and taking to sedentary work, I soon found that 
the want of the accustomed hard exercise began to tell 
upon me and upset my digestive organs ; and about nine 
years ago I was seized with a very violent bleeding, 
some large internal vessel having given way, occasioning 
the loss of a very large quantity of blood. I conse- 
quently was very weak for several years afterwards, but 
i have had no return of the complaint, and am now in 
U. O. 2 


a pretty fair state of health, being able to stand a con-^ 
siderable amount of hard work, in the shape of a 20 
or 30 miles walk, or a good long pull on the river." 

Q. also appears to have passed somewhat too sud- 
denly from a life of muscular activity at College to 
the close confinement of a city counting-house ; "After 
taking my degree," he remarks, "I began a business 
life which I have ever since followed, rowing very occsT- 
sionally, and then only for pleasure. Some time after 
doing so I had a somewhat severe attack of stagnation 
of the liver, which was caused entirely, I believe, by 
the want of rowing exercise which before that I had 
practised incessantly for ten years — and not by the ex- 
cess of it; I suffered from violent pain in my back and 
shoulders, keeping me awake all night. I consulted 

several doctors without relief, till Dr I think at 

once understood my case; he gave me medicine to help 
my digestion, and sent me into the country with a couple 
of horses to trot about, and certainly from that time I 
gradually improved till in about two months I was well 

R., another university Oarsman who rowed compara- 
tively lately, appears to have suffered from the same 
cause; one of his friends thus describes him: *'R. will 
tell you that his health has been ruined by rowing; he 
says that his digestion and heart are injured; it may be 
so, but I think myself that he looks remarkably well for 
one who should be as ill as he considers himself; and 
besides, I think it is a question whether the sedentary 
life he has been leading, after having been accustomed 
to hard work all his life, may not account for a good 
deal of it." 

Besides the cases which I have thus enumerated, 
several of my correspondents attribute to their boating 


labours ailments of more or less trivial character. Thus, 
four of them assure me that the exposure brought on 
sundry rheumatic pains. Three others speak of having 
sprained themselves in the race, though the consequences 
were merely temporary. Two attribute to rowing oc- 
casional attacks of dyspepsia, though they candidly 
admit that these may perhaps with more justice be 
attributed to over indulgence in tobacco. Two express 
the opinion that they are not so strong as they used to 
be, while a considerable number inform me that while 
they were undergoing a course of training they ex- 
perienced much discomfort from boils. 

In the extracts which I have given from the letters 
of the rowers, where the general health appeared to 
be really sound, I have considered myself justified in 
omitting all reference to these minor ailments. 

Having thus dwelt somewhat in detail on seventeen 
cases in which the training and exertion connected with 
the University Race are supposed to have told with more 
or less injurious effect on some of those who participated 
in the struggle — nine of the cases resting on the evi- 
dence of men who themselves rowed and are still alive, 
and the remaining eight on reports received from some 
of the relatives of those now dead — I shall next proceed 
to enquire into the duration of life of University Oars- 
men. Are they, generally speaking, somewhat short- 
lived, or are we justified in expecting them to enjoy an 
average tale of years .^ 

With a view of throwing light on this portion of my 
subject, I have, immediately after the names of the men 
who rowed in each race, inserted extracts from Life 
Tables in which is set forth the probable expectation of 
life of the rival crews, while Tables regarding the longe- 
vity of the Oarsmen of either University may be found 



in the Appendix. These Tables are intended to shew 
by how many years each crew, and indeed every indi- 
vidual member of each crew, is likely to survive the year 
of the race. They relate to those who rowed between 
the years 1829 (the first race) and 1859, both years in- 
clusive. In the course of these 30 years, 16 University 
Matches came off, in which 32 crews competed. In the 
case of each of these crews I have calculated the pro- 
bable duration of life of the different Oarsmen of whom 
they were composed : the following explanation will pro- 
bably render these Tables intelligible. I have assumed, 
in the first place, that each man was at the time he 
rowed 20 years of age; I consider myself justified in 
striking this average, as very many of my correspondents 
have told me how old they were at the time, and twenty 
expresses with very tolerable accuracy the mean age of 
the men both at Oxford and Cambridge. (For the last 
12 or 15 years 21 would be nearer the mark, as young 
men have come up to the universities somewhat later 
in life than they did 30 or 40 years ago.) 

How many years, then, may a healthy man of 20 
hope to live.^ in other words, what is a man's expectation 
of life at 20 } 

According to Dr Farr*s English Life Tables, this 
may be set down at 40 years; hence, every sound man 
who rows in the race ought to live till the age of 60; 
and if all the members of the Oxford 1829 crew had 
lived till the lOth of June, 1869, the 40th anniversary of 
the race, and then died, their lives would have extended 
over as many years as accepted calculations would war- 
rant us in anticipating. Of these eight men, however, 
three died before the year 1869 — one in 1856, one in 
1863, and one in 1868; and the mean age of these three 
Oarsmen, instead of being 60 years, was only 53. In 


fact the three together lived 20 years less than healthy 
men of 20 usually do. In other words, they fell short 
of their calculated expectation of life by 20 years. 
Against these 20 years, however, we have an offset in 
the years which the five healthy survivors at the end 
of the year 1869 were likely to live. Taking their ages 
at 20 when they rowed in the year 1829, and at 60 in 
the year 1869, the expectation of life of each one of 
them, according to Dr Farr's Tables, would then be 14 
years, the value of the five lives together being 70 
years. On adding these 70 years of estimated life to 
the years which had been actually enjoyed by the col- 
lective members of the crew between 1829 and 1869, both 
by those alive in the latter year, and by those who died 
prematurely, it appears that the life of the crew may be 
set down at 370 years ; but the calculated value of the 
eight lives would not exceed 320 years, hence this crew 
may be considered likely to live 50 years longer than 
eight ordinarily healthy men, each rower in fact living 
on an average for about 46 years instead of 40 years 
after the race. 

On testing the Cambridge Crew of 1829 in the 
same manner, I find the results still more favourable. 
Seven of the men who rowed in that race were alive 
and in good health at the end of the year 1869. 
Each one of these seven had therefore at that time 
enjoyed his allotted span of days. One however died 
prematurely eleven years after the race. His life con- 
sequently was of 29 years less duration than a good 
life ought to be. Against these 29 years we have the 
expectation of life of the seven surviving Oarsmen at 
60 ; valued at fourteen years. It is worth to the crew 
collectively 98 years, and this, added to the 291 years 
which they had together attained to in 1869, gives to 


the eight Oars an after life of 389 instead of 320 years, 
and to each man 48*6 instead of 40 years. The Table 
regarding these two first crews of the year 1829 "^^ly 
be calculated up to a still later date, and so may deal 
more with the past and less with the future. From 
enquiries which I have made, I have found that the 
twelve old Oars of the 1829 boats, whose lives I have 
spoken of as prolonged till the end of the year 1869, 
were still alive on the loth of June, 1872, exactly 43 
years after the race; these 12 ancient mariners had 
therefore on that day attained the age of 516 years. 
To this must be added the 1 1 1 years of life enjoyed by 
the four who died early, we then get 627 years ; but the 
estimated life of the 16 men at 20 would be 640 years, 
or only 13 more than they have actually enjoyed. 
Hence, if each one of the survivors lived only thirteen 
months longer and then died, the crew might be looked 
upon in the mass as having reached the average length 
of life of healthy Englishmen. By the law of life pro- 
babilities, however, the 12 survivors may be expected 
to live not 13 years together but 12 years each, or 144 
years collectively, and if this be added to the 625 years 
which the crews have already lived through, we are 
justified in expecting that they will enjoy 771 instead 
of 640 years of life; and on an average each man, 
instead of living 40 years after the race, will probably 
survive for somewhat more than 48. 

I have dwelt at considerable length on the duration 
of life of the 1829 crews, because that race was rowed 
so many years ago that in discussing it we are treating 
rather of obtained results than of estimated probabilities ; 
we are in fact dealing to a greater extent than we are 
in the other races, not with years of life which may be 
anticipated, but with those which have been enjoyed. 


One of my correspondents who took part in this early 
race, informs me that even in those days warnings 
were not wanting, but that those who engaged in the 
struggle were assured that they must not expect to 
survive the age of 30. I have, however, shewn that 
12 of the crew have already attained to more than 
double that age, and unless some extraordinary fatality 
should befall them, it is certain that any Insurance 
Company which accepted the 16 lives in the year 1829 
would have found it a very profitable venture. 

Apparently the best lived crew in the series was the 
Cambridge crew of 1840; at the end of the year 1869 
the eight men of which it was composed were all alive, 
and had together lived for 232 years. Assuming that 
in that year they were each 49 years old, their indi- 
vidual expectation of life would be 21 years, or collec- 
tively 168 years, and these 168 expected years added 
to the 232 actual years gives 400, or to each man a mean 
after life of 50 instead of 40 years. 

The worst lived crew in the table is the first 1849 
Cambridge crew. Four of the men of which it consisted 
died young; (two of them from accidental causes, one 
only three years after the race, and the other only five). 
I have calculated that on an average the Oars who 
pulled in this match, instead of surviving the race for 
206 years, cannot be expected to live much more than 
108 years. 

On the whole the results obtained by the Life Tables, 
in so far as they bear upon the duration of life of Uni- 
versity Oarsmen, must be deemed decidedly favourable ; 
the lives of each one of the 32 crews to which they 
refer extending over 334 instead of 320 years. Hence 
each individual who rowed is likely to survive the race, 
on an average, some 42 instead of 40 years. 


The lives of the Oxford men are on the whole de- 
cidedly better than those of the Cambridge Oars ; the 
former averaging 437 years instead ef 40 after the race, 
while the latter cannot be credited with more than 407. 
This is due to the fact that out of the 16 Oxford crews 
ivhich rowed between 1829 and 1869 only 15 men died 
within those years ; while the deaths among the Cam- 
bridge men, who took part in the same faces, amounted 
to 24, 

In drawing up the tables I have made certain de- 
ductions for unsound lives ; wherever in fact I have 
grounds for believing that some one of the survivors of 
a particular Crew is not in a thoroughly satisfactory 
state of health, I have allotted to him a shorter span of 
after years than would be assigned to a perfectly sound 
man. Some such deductions, it will be admitted, were 
heeded, inasmuch as Dr Farr*s Tables relate only to 
healthy lives. 

It will perhaps be observed that the Tables in the 
Appendix do not in their results exactly correspond 
with the remarks made regarding the expectation of 
life in those portions of this volume in which the names 
of the men are specified. This apparent discrepancy 
between the statistics of life which follow the names 
of the several Crews and those given in the Appendix, 
is due to the fact that in the one case the expectations 
of life are calculated solely with a reference to the six- 
teen men actually engaged in the race, without taking 
into account the Crews which either preceded them or 
came after them. In the other (/. e. the Tables in the 
Appendix) I have looked upon the different Boats as 
merely parts of a series, and inasmuch as in this series 
a certain number of the crews would have been pre- 
judicially affected, by the premature decease of men 


♦1 • 

who happened 'to row in more than one race, I have 
found it nece&s^ry to make allowance for the early 
deaths of such men. only in the first race in which they 
rowed. I have followed the same course also in dealing 
with the health of all those University Oars who have 
rowed more than once. Otherwise the same man might 
have been cgunted as "benefited" or "injured" three 
or four times, thus obviously falsifying the general con- 

Oh the injportant question of the expectation of life, 
it is satisfactory to find that however severe be the 
standard of longevity which we require, my Tables are 
still favourable to the rowers. Thus for example, if 
instead of adopting Dr Farr's calculations, we take the 
tables of some of those Insurance Offices which profess 
to accept none but select lives, we still find the Oarsmen 
living beyond these limits ; and when, in addition to 
requiring this high rate of years, we become still more 
exacting, on the ground that nearly half of the rowers 
are clergymen (whose lives are somewhat better than 
those of less favoured mortals), the grand results (in 
commercial parlance) still shew a balance on the right 

I shall next pass on to consider what has been the 
mortality among University Oars between the years 1829 
and 1869, directing special attention to the causes of 
death, with a view of discovering whether the diseases 
which proved fatal were of such a character as would be 
likely to be induced by excessive exertion. I have 
already stated that in the course of the 40 years to 
which my enquiry extends, 294 different men rowed in 
the 26 races which were contested. Among these 294 
men there were 39 deaths, 24 among the 147 Cambridge 
men (being at the rate of 17*6 per cent.), and 15 among 



the Oxford men (or just ten per cent) ; taking the two 
Universities together, about 1 3 per cent I have shewn 
in the foregoing pages (in which I have discussed at 
some length the probable duration of life of the different 
crews) that the death-rate among those who have par- 
ticipated in these races is decidedly favourable. But it 
remains to be considered whether there was anything in 
the nature of the maladies from which death occurred, 
to which exception can legitimately be taken. The 
following were the causes of death : — 
II died from Fever. 

„ Consumption. 

„ Other forms of Chest Disease. 

6 „ Accidental Causes. 

3 „ Heart Affections. 

2 „ Disease of the Brain. 

2 „ Inflammatory Attacks. 

I „ General Paralysis. 

I „ Calculus. 

I „ Erysipelas. 

I „ Bright's Disease. 

I „ Cancer. 

I „ Lupus. 

In this bill of mortality it will be observed that the 
death-rate from Fever (35 per cent, of the whole) was 
unusually high. It is believed by some writers that 
when fevers attack strong men they are more likely to 
succumb to the disease than others who may be endued 
with less robust frames. The late Dr Graves of Dublin 
(a very high authority on everything relating to this 
affection) remarks in one of his clinical lectures : " Those 
who assert that the possession of previous good health 
or of a robust frame renders violent fevers less dangerous 
know little of the matter. The two strongest and most 


powerful men I ever knew both died before the third 
day." The accidental or violent deaths, as they are 
termed by the Registrar-General, were unusually nume- 
rous, amounting to six, or fifteen per cent, of the whole. 
This is very much above the average for the country 
generally among males of a corresponding age, whose 
deaths from the same cause do not exceed seven per 
cent. Among the Oarsmen who perished in this untimely 
way one was shot at Lucknow, one foundered on board 
the " London" in the Bay of Biscay, another was drowned 
in swimming a young horse across a river in Australia, 
another was murdered by poachers, and another acci- 
dentally shot 

Turning from these casualties, which it is needless 
to remark can in no possible way be traced to the effects 
of rowing, we come to the consideration of those diseases 
of the respiratory and the circulatory systems (in other 
words of the lungs and of the heart) which we are ac- 
customed to hear of in connection with aquatic struggles. 
With a view of throwing some light on this subject let 
us see in what proportion deaths occur from these dis- 
eases among adult males belonging to the civil popula- 
tion of England and Wales between the ages of 20-and 
60. This we may readily discover by turning to the 
1 8th Report of the Registrar-General, which contains 
tables specifying the causes of death at different periods 
of life in the seven years 1848 — 1854. Inasmuch as the 
years to which these tables refer fall about midway be- 
tween the years 29 and 69, they may be looked upon 
as likely to afford fair average data for purposes of com- 
parison. During these seven years it appears that 40 
per cent, of the deaths which occurred among males 
between the ages of 20 and 60 are ascribed to diseases 
of the lungs — 28*9 per cent, being due to consumption, 


and 112 per cent to other forms of chest affection. 
Among the University Oars at correspondii^ periods of 
life the deaths under this head did not exceed 23 per 
cent, of the total mortality — 17 per cent, being due to 
consumption, and S per cent, to the remaining varieties 
of pulmonary affections. I have looked over several 
Reports on the health of the navy, and find from them 
that among sailors the disorders of the chest occasion 
about 28 per cent, of the general death-rate ; while the 
Reports on the health of the army clearly testify that in 
spite of the sanitary care which has been bestowed on 
the soldier since the Crimean war, the mortality from 
diseases of this class still continues considerably higher 
than it is among our civil population, and hence de- 
cidedly heavier than among University Oars; while 
among the Guards lung disease is observed to prevail 
to a still more fatal extent. 

The diseases of the oi^ans of circulation (in other 

words heart affections) must next be considered. Among 

the 39 deaths three (or 7^4 per cent.) are ascribed to 

cardiac disorders. On turning to the Reports of the 

Registrar-General, I find that in the course of the last 

14 or 15 years there has been a marked increase in the 

deaths arising from these maladies. Thus, between the 

years 1848 and 1854, 5'2 per cent, of the deaths among 

males between 20 and 60 were set down to heart disease. 

In the later Reports, however, extending from 1859 to 

1869, the deaths from this cause rose to 8 per cent. 

I an average between these two extremes we 

- cent. ; or we may say generally that about 

n every 200 of which the causes are specified 

disorders of this class. Among sailors the 

rom heart disease is very much greater. In 

on the health of the navy for the year 1868 


it appears that 13 per cent, of the deaths were due to 
some form of cardiac disease. 

The Reports then from which I have just quoted 
sufficiently shew that, as regards heart complaint, there 
is little appreciable difference in the mortality observed 
among University Oars and that which prevails amongst 
other classes of men at a corresponding period of life. 
It may be urged that the deaths among the rowers are 
not sufficiently numerous to afford any very conclusive 
standard of comparison. Nevertheless they are, I am 
disposed to think, amply sufficient when taken in con- 
nection with what has been said regarding the longevity 
of the rowers, to shew that those hecatombs of young 
Englishmen who, we are told, sacrifice themselves annu- 
ally on the altars of our popular pastimes, exist rather 
in the timid brains of alarmists than in the stern tables 
of statistical investigation. 

Having thus discussed the different cases in which 
health is said to have suffered from a hard-rowing 
career — ^having given the results obtained by tables in 
which the expectation of life of the several crews has 
been approximately calculated, and having considered 
what proportion of the deaths is due to diseases of 
those organs which might be expected to suffer from 
muscular exercise carried to excess, it will be allowable 
to examine somewhat critically into the nature of the 
evidence which has been gathered from various sources 
concerning the cases of injury. I have already re- 
marked that in prosecuting this enquiry I have written 
letters to all the old University Oars now alive, request- 
ing them to favour me with their experience of the after 
effects of training and boat-racing on their own health ; 
and I further begged them to inform me which, if any, 
of those who were their contemporaries or friends among 


the crews were believed to have suffered from their ex- 
ertions in rowing. In reply to this question I have 
received much interesting information, many of my cor- 
respondents describing to me the physique of their fel- 
low-oarsmen, and referring more especially to those whose 
health they did not deem altogether satisfactory. From 
these data I readily discovered which cases seemed open 
to suspicion, and required further investigation. In order 
that the details I collected might be accurate, I then 
addressed myself to the nearest friends and relations of 
those who are no more, and in some instances was even 
fortunate enough to secure a medical opinion upon the 
cases. It appeared to me that I should thus gain the 
most trustworthy testimony available on so delicate a 
3ubject. I must confess, however, that after carefully 
weighing the evidence thus collected regarding these 
somewhat uncertain lives, I am forced to admit that 
in such an enquiry more reliance is to be placed upon 
the opinions of College friends than upon those of any 
relative, however near. Not that I would for a moment 
imply that the latter have in any way failed to describe 
their own view of the case, but, as a matter of fact, it 
would be well nigh impossible for relations to form an 
unbiassed opinion regarding those who are both near 
and dear to them, or to come to an impartial conclusion 
on this subject ; thus, in several instances, I am assured 
by relations, that in the very nature of things it is self- 
evident that such violent exercise must be harmful; 
that they had warned those in whom they were in- 
terested of the dangers they were incurring; their advice 
had, however, been unheeded, the risk had been run with 
open eyes, and, as had been foreseen, ill consequences 
had supervened. These kinsmen had, in fact, heard 
and read so much regarding the dangers of these aquatic 


contests, that they made up their minds that health 
would become impaired, and when, at length, the evil 
day came, however long after the exertion, and whatever 
might be the disorder, all was set down to the baneful 
effects of rowing. Besides, however desirous relations 
may be to reply accurately, the very fact of their relation- 
ship disqualifies them from forming an impartial opinion. 
Even near relations know comparatively little regarding 
the University careers of the members of their own 
families. Very few parents would be able to form even 
an approximate estimate of the number of hours which 
their sons devote to study, or the time they expend 
on cricket and boating. They know little regarding 
that inner phase of a young man's College life, which, in 
proportion as it is spent wisely or wantonly, exerts so 
potent an influence on his after health. Yet, these are 
secrets which are sufficiently revealed to* the companions 
of his youth. They are acquainted with his habits, they 
are familiar with the manner in which his evenings and 
his mornings are passed. They have shared with him 
in the labours of the same boat, and toiled together 
behind the same stroke. They have had opportunities 
of observing how far he may have shewn himself unduly 
exhausted ; whether, as the pace increased his face grew 
ruddy and fresh, or turned sallow and pallid ; whether, 
after severe exercise, his appetite was stimulated, nature 
hastening to repair by fresh fuel the undue consumption 
of tissues, or whether he picked at his food in a dainty 
and capricious manner, as though his work had been 
too hard for him. Such friends are the true judges of a 
man's constitutional vigour ; by his clear transparent skin, 
by the pearly white of his eye, by his tapering fingers, 
by his susceptibility to cold, they can satisfy themselves 
that he is a man of delicate fibre, one in whom growth 


has proceeded more rapidly than development; in a 
wprd, that he is one on whom any exciting cause, how- 
ever trivial, might rouse to fatal activity the latent seeds 
of disease. Such warnings are but too often unper- 
ceived by relatives. Indeed, it is extraordinary how 
blind they frequently shew themselves to the physical 
infirmities of those who have been reared under their 
own roof They have grown so accustomed to the 
delicate features, to the careworn countenance, that they 
have failed to realize how frail is the thread of life, and 
how slight may be the jar by which the silver cord 
might be loosed. Several of the old Oars who are said 
to have suffered, were, it is very evident, deficient in 
constitutional vigour, while others were the subjects of 
what has been termed hereditary consumption. Under 
these circumstances, that evil results should ensue, was 
nothing more than might have been anticipated. Such, 
unhappy consequences do not prove that boat-racing 
is a dangerous pastime for the robust; they merely 
shew that those deficient in stamina should never enter 
a boat for racing purposes. Moreover, it often happens 
that such men are peculiarly liable to over-exert them- 
selves. In temperament they are frequently over san- 
guine ; in early life it is no unusual thing to observe 
among them a precocious development of the mental 
faculties, the brain being too active for the feeble tene- 
ment in which it dwells. Men of this type often exhibit 
under difficulties extraordinary pluck. In spirit, though 
not in strength, they are the thoroughbreds of the human 
race, and when they engage in such a struggle as the 
University Match, they are but little lijcely to spare 

It must not, however, be assumed, because some 
listinguished oarsmen died of heart or lung disease, 



■ '^- I * ■ -L ■ 

that their untimely fate must necessarily be ascribed to 
their aquatic labours. Had the University Oars who suc- 
cumbed to the disorders of these organs exceeded in 
number those who die from - such causes amonsf the 
civil population at the same period of life, the surplus 
mortality among the. former might perhaps with more 
or less justice be set down to the unusually hard 
exercise in which the men had indulged. But such is 
very far from being the case ; indeed, it appears from 
the Reports of the Registrar-General, to which I have 
already referred, that whereas about 46 men out of 
every hundred who died between the ages of 20 and 
60 died from disorders of the lungs and heart, among 
the old Oar3 the deaths from these diseases have not 
exceeded 12, being at the rate of 30 instead of 46 per 
cent. Of these twelve deaths, nine are believed by the 
relatives to have been, in a greater or less degree, has- 
tened by the Boat-Race. Assuming, for the sake of argu- 
ment, that their opinions are correct, and that had the 
rowers indulged to a less extent in muscular excesses, 
their lives might have been prolonged, it would then 
appear that among the University Oars only seven 
deaths in every hundred have occurred from a class of 
disorders which carry off 46 out of every hundred of 
the population generally. Were such the case, we should 
discover a rate of mortality from lung and heart disease 
among Oarsmen far lower than can be found in any Sta^ 
tistical Tables which ever were compiled. 

It must be remembered also that the men who occupy 
seats in the University Eight are as a rule considerably 
above the average in height — and among such men con- 
sumption is apt to occur to a disproportionately exces- 
sive extent. Thus, it has been observed, both in our 
own service and in the armies of the continent, that the 


mortality from consumption is considerably heavier 
among the Guards than it is among the raiments of the 
Line. And certainly, in respect to stature, University 
Oarsmen bear the same proportion to the rest of the civil 
population as Guardsmen to the Line. 

I may further mention, that regarding some of the 
more severe cases of injury which have been recorded, I 
find certain discrepancies between several of my corre- 
spondents on points of vital importance. Thus I have 
been assured by relations that in two cases the failure of 
health which supervened commenced with the rupture of 
a blood-vessel — and that these casualties took place 
either in the race itself or during the preparatory train- 
ing. Though doubtless such accidents may have hap- 
pened, it certainly seems strange that those who rowed 
in the same boat with the injured men (to several of 
whom I have directed special enquiries on this subject) 
can supply no information but such as is of a negative 
character. They have in fact entirely forgotten the oc- 
currence. Yet had a blood-vessel really been ruptured — 
had copious hemorrhage ensued — it seems strange that 
the accident should not be remembered ; for it is of so 
alarming a nature that it would be calculated to pro- 
duce a dqep impression upon the minds of Fellow-oars- 
men. It would be sufficiently grave to put an immedi- 
ate stop even to a University Race ; for however exciting 
a struggle might be, no men would consider themselves 
justified in persevering to row when one of their number 
had sustained so serious an injury as the rupture of a 
blood-vessel. I have previously stated, on the authority 
of a near kinsman, that one of the early Oars was be- 
lieved to have overdone it, and that " after the University 
Race he fainted, and it was two hours before they could 
restore him." Now here we have a definite state- 


ment — we should expect, therefore, from the letters of 
his contemporaries to glean corroborative testimony; 
several members of his crew, however (from whom I 
have sought information on this particular point), can 
remember no such catastrophe. One of them (who occu- 
pied the seat immediately behind him in this race) thus 
expresses himself: "I do not think it is true that ■ 
fainted after the race was over ; I have no recollection of 
the circumstance, and I think I should not have forgot- 
ten it if it had happened. I never heard that he was at 
all injured by his exertions in rowing; nor did I ever see 
him unduly distressed." Here then is one of my " in- 
jured men " who, in the opinion of his relatives, was so 
much exhausted that he could not be restored for two 
hours, and yet the Oarsman who rowed immediately be- 
hind him — upon whom in fainting he might be expected 
to fall — " never saw him unduly distressed." Although 
therefore I have deemed it right in describing the differ- 
ent cases of injury to give special prominence to the 
opinions of relations, I am still strongly impressed with 
the conviction that in several instances these opinions 
can only be accepted with very considerable reserve. 
Indeed, touching the list of damaged oarsmen generally 
it may perhaps be urged that there is in the history of 
their maladies a certain degree of vagueness, a want of 
precision in dealing with the various cases which appa- 
rently detracts from their scientific value. To all such 
objections I would reply that the general scope of this 
enquiry is of so delicate a nature that any approach to 
diagnostic accuracy was wholly impracticable. In chronic 
cases also, such as those with which I have had to deal, 
a failure of health may be influenced by so many factors, 
may depend on such a variety of causes, that we must 
rest satisfied with the balance of probabilities. Although 



in several instances I have been so fortunate as to obtain 
the testimony of medical attendants, yet even these 
skilled observers have assured me that there was no- 
thing distinctive about any of the maladies which would 
warrant them in ascribing fatal results to the direct 
effects of excessive muscular exertions, rather than to 
the various other causes whereby health is liable to be 
deranged. If then we accept the communications of the 
relatives with some reservation, from the difficulty they 
naturally feel in forming an unbiassed opinion and from 
a sort of instinctive unwillingness to admit any heredi^ 
tary weakness — an unwillingness which every practitioner 
of medicine well knows is very general amongst all classes 
of the population — there still remain the eight cases in 
which the sufferers themselves admit that their experi- 
ence of the after-effects of Boat-Racing has unfortunately 
been fraught with mischief more or less grave. The tes- 
timony of these men in regard to what they have suf- 
fered in their own persons, is no doubt entitled to more 
consideration ; yet a careful examination of these eight 
cases shews that in several instances the men speak with 
very considerable reserve on the subject of their impaired 
health being attributable to boating, while in others 
they candidly admit that any ill-effects which ensued 
were in some degree self-caused. Thus, for example, 
three confess that they overdid it in other ways as well 
as in boating ; two affirm distinctly that they were unfit 
to pull at the time of the Race; one persevered in 
rowing while his health was failing ; and another in spite 
of the urgent representations of his friends. If fair deduc-^ 
tion be made for these isolated cases of general disregard 
to health or extraordinary imprudence, it would seem 
that the vague fears regarding the danger of taking part 
in a hard Boat-Race, which have got possession of the 


public mind, may be traced, not so much to the evidence 
of the rowing men themselves, or of their companions in 
the amusement, as to what has been said and observed 
by kinsmen and relations. As a rule, those who have 
rowed are singularly sceptical on the subject of "inju- 
rious effects." Indeed, one distinguished authority on 
all aquatic subjects connected with the University, who 
has probably trained as many crews as any man living, 
assures me that in the course of his long experience he 
Can only call to mind two men who in any way suffered, 
and even in these two cases he is by no means sure that 
the evil results should be assigned solely to rowing. 

There is one circumstance connected with the alleged 
cases of injury which materially increases the difficulty 
of assigning the failure of health in each instance to 
some definite exciting cause. I refer to the length of 
time which generally elapsed ere the Upas tree bore its 
deadly fruit. Thus, in the cases of eight of the injured 
men, I find that although the rowers are now dead, still 
they each lived on an average for 12 years after the race, 
and almost all were sufficiently well to follow the duties of 
active professions. It would appear then that admitting 
that such violent exercise as Boat-Racing does in some 
few instances prove injurious, still the evil effects are 
certainly not immediate. Among the whole of the Uni- 
versity Oars I have not been able to discover a single 
example of any of those rapidly fatal forms of heart 
disease which are occasionally met with in medical 
practice. Every physician who has had the advantage 
of being connected with a large hospital has probably 
seen a certain number of such cases. They have been 
observed, for example, among the class of men known 
as coal-whippers, who are employed in loading vessels 
with coal. These men in prosecuting their calling are 


in the habit of catching hold of a rope suspended above 
them, and throwing themselves violently upon it; in this 
manner, a sudden and excessive strain is thrown upon 
the heart, the valves of which are occasionally ruptured ; 
or an aneurism may be formed either within its own 
walls or in connection with those of some of the larger 
arteries; or perhaps one of the ventricles may actually 
give way. In my own hospital experience I have seen 
some eight or ten such cases. The last which came 
under my observation occurred to a patient who was 
compelled to carry a heavy sack of corn for a consi- 
derable distance without having the opportunity of 
taking rest on the way. He was struggling to reach 
the end of his journey, when he suddenly felt something 
give way within his chest; he experienced a rush of blood 
to the head, and fell down insensible. One of the valves 
of the left side of the heart was torn from its attachment, 
and from that moment he was never able to earn a 
shilling or to do an hour's work. Life, in so far as 
capacity for labour was concerned, was virtually at an 
end, and death approached with rapid and certain strides. 
In most cases of this grave character the general features 
of the accident are pretty much the same ; it is sudden and 
overwhelming at the time, and though perhaps after- 
wards, when complete rest is enjoined, the distressing 
symptoms may be temporarily alleviated, yet there is no 
prospect of permanent relief; for the fatal termination 
but too often proves painful in the extreme. Cases of 
this nature are forcible examples of cardiac disease 
induced by too severe a strain; but among the 294 
University Oarsmen I have not been able to discover 
that a single accident of this kind ever occurred as a 
consequence of the Boat-Race. In two instances, as has 
been already stated, the exertions of the race are said to 


have occasioned the rupture of a blood-vessel. Yet, one 
of the men who was thus afflicted lived more than ten 
years after the race, the other survived it for upwards 
of twenty-five years, and both were in all respects equal 
to the duties of an active life. No University Oar 
appears to have been struck down by these more rapidly 
fatal forms of heart disease, and I have only met with 
one instance where I have reason to believe that an 
aneurism was induced by the exertions of a Boal-Race. 
The subject of this accident (never connected with either 
University) was, I have been assured, notoriously care- 
less about his health and by no means a temperate liver, 
and it is to intemperance that I would ascribe the mis- 
chief in this particular case. Nay,I would go further, and 
assert unhesitatingly, that whenever by reason of some 
violent strain an accident occurs, either to the heart 
itself or to one of its great vessels, that heart was not at 
the time in a perfectly healthy state. The tenacity of 
its fibres or of its lining membrane has been undermined 
either by active disease or by some one of those de- 
generative changes which are liable to occur, either as 
a consequence of alcoholic excess or as the natural ac- 
companiment of advancing years. In this opinion I am 
supported by the high authority of Professor Niemeyer, 
who distinctly asserts, in his important work on the 
theory and practice of medicine, that **the healthy heart 
never ruptures." 

Being desirous to arrive at definite conclusions based 
on fact as to what is the effect of a hard-rowing career 
on a man's constitution — ^whether generally speaking it 
proves beneficial or injurious to those who enter upon 
it, whether it renders the after health more vigorous or 
rather has a tendency to lower and undermine the bodily 
powers — I have given extracts from letters which I have 


» • 

received from almost every rower now alive who has 
taken part in the University Race from the year 1829 
down to the year 1869. The portions of the letters 
which I have in general selected for publication are 
those in which my correspondents describe the amount 
of work they have done on the river, and the effect 
which these aquatic labours have had on their health. 
In this way we have their own testimony regarding 
what they have done and how they have fared. Many 
of the writers of these letters, in addition to giving 
their own personal experience, have discussed at some 
length the whole question of training and Boat-Racing 
as practised at the Universities, and have stated the 
opinions at which they themselves have arrived on this 
subject But in placing the results before the public, I 
have found it convenient (except where some point of 
special interest appeared to be discussed) altogether to 
omit these opinions, and confine myself to facts. For 
it seemed to me that in obtaining the direct personal 
experience of so many intelligent men, I possessed a 
far more ample and important mass of evidence on which 
to base statistical conclusions than could be at the dis- 
posal of any of my correspondents, none of whom had 
used the same means of collecting exhaustive informa- 
tion. It was not then from any want of courtesy to- 
wards the University Oars that I am led to omit these 
portions of their letters, but because I found that the 
insertion of such general opinions would greatly com- 
plicate a question in itself sufficiently difficult of solution. 
Thus, for example, in several instances a writer ex- 
presses himself after the following manner: ** Though 
' have never suffered any injurious consequences from 
rowing at the University, but have always enjoyed 
silent health, still it stands to reason that men in 


general must be the worse for such heart-rending labour." 
Or: "Though I have never as yet felt any evil effects, 
still I suppose that with the advance of years I must 
expect to suffer for having taken so much out of myself." 
It will readily be admitted that in these extracts opinion 
is directly opposed to personal experience ; the writers 
being led to rely more on what they have heard and 
read than on what they have themselves felt. 

In tabulating the contents of the different letters 
which I have received, I have found it convenient to 
classify results under three distinct heads. Some of my 
correspondents, unsolicited, have volunteered the state- 
ment that so far from having suffered in health, they 
rather feel that they are the stronger for their labours. 
They believe in fact that their rowing did them good. 
Such Oarsmen I have counted under the heading "Bene- 
fited." Others who merely say in general terms that 
they never felt any inconvenience, I have spoken of 
as " Uninjured ;" while those who consider that their 
exertions proved harmful I have set down as "Injured." 
The cases of the 39 old Oars, who at the end of the 
year 1869 were no longer alive, are also dealt with in 
these tables. In estimating the effects of Boat- Racing on 
their health, I have necessarily been compelled to rely 
upon the statements of their relations and friends, 
R^arding the health of 251 out of the remaining 255 
Oarsmen, I am in possession of their own written testi- 
mony; and as to the four who have not honoured me 
with an answer to my letters, the required informa- 
tion has been amply supplied by their Fellow-oarsmen. 
From these statistics it appears that 115 (or 39 per cent, 
of the whole) were benefited by their exertions ; 162 
(or 55 per cent.) were in no way injured; while 17 (or 
about 6 per cent.) refer to themselves, or are spoken of 


by their friends, as having sustained that amount of 
injury which in a preceding portion of these pages I 
have endeavoured to describe. 

In considering how far rowing may have been at- 
tended with actually beneficial results, we may turn with 
satisfaction to the after lives of the twelve surviving 
members of the crew of 1829. Copious extracts from 
the letters of each one of them will be found elsewhere ; 
with a single exception they all speak of their health 
as remarkably good, and in that one case the only 
ailment complained of appears to be "something of a 
tendency to palpitation of the heart." Those who are 
acquainted with the varied infirmities which as years 
roll on are wont to assail the human frame, will, I fancy, 
agree with me in thinking that the bill of health pre- 
sented by these twelve primeval votaries of the oar at the 
time when they had severally attained the age of sixty 
years, was a remarkably clean one. Some of them 
assure me that in their day, as in the present, forecasts 
respecting their untimely decease were by no means 
uncommon. But by this time surely they have lived 
down all such disquieting vaticinations. The remarkably 
firm and clear hand in which almost, without exception, 
the letters of these veteran Oarsmen are written, and the 
distinctness with which each character is formed, are 
a sure guarantee that in their frames neither has the 
sight as yet grown dim, nor has the pulse of life began 
to fail. 

Scattered through the letters of my correspondents 
I find some remarkably telling statements regarding the 
advantages which have resulted from a rowing career. 
Thus, for example, I am told by a Fellow of the Royal 
College of Physicians of Edinburgh, who occupied a 
seat in one of the early Eights, that, so far as his personal 


experience goes, "rowing in a racing-boat with proper 
training and fitting men does good physically and 
morally, and men are likely to live the longer for it. 
I believe," he adds, "that in my own case rowing has 
strengthened me to go through hard and trying work 
on the Equator for twenty years; and to be, as I am, 
the only survivor of all my contemporaries; but none 
of them were rowing men." 

Another of my correspondents, who rowed in the 
1829 race, and who has since lived a singularly active 
life, in referring to Boat-Racing and other forms of hard 
exercise which he was accustomed to take during his 
University days, sums up his remarks in these words • 
**A11 these processes, combined with strict diet and 
regular habits, had, I think, a most beneficial effect upon 
the constitution, and enabled me on horseback and on 
foot, in Australia and New Zealand, to make very long 
journeys without inconvenience." 

Another writer at present residing in the Colonies 
observes : *' Since taking my degree my constitution has 
been put to the test in many climates ; for I have lived 
in Canada, on the West Coast of America, and in 
Australia, and I can safely aver that I have never, in 
trying circumstances, found a failure of physical power, 
and that when hard pressed by fatigue and want of 
food, the recollection of the endurance developed by 
rowing and other athletics gave me fresh spirit and en- 

Another old Oar thus expresses his obligations to 
rowing : " I came up to the University an overgrown, 
sickly, London-bred boy of seventeen and a half; I soon 
took to rowing and gradually lost my weakness, filled 
out, and improved physically in every respect.** 

Another writes in much the same strain : " The train- 


ing and exertion of rowing races, so far as I am con- 
cerned, have been attended with great benefit to the 
constitution. When I first went to the University, though 
I had always strong health, I was a rather weedy sort 
of fellow; rowing soon developed chest and shoulders, 
and made me a heavy muscular man." 

Others again were benefited, but in a somewhat 
different manner, as may be seen from the following 
extract: "Before I went into regular training for the 
University Race, I was very fat and soft ; so much so, 
that at school I weighed about 13 stone, and was never 
good at active exercises. I also remember that the year 
before I commenced regular training, I used to feel in 
the boat as if I should die ; and at about the same time 
I got completely shut up going up a hill in the north. 
My two years of training seemed to have changed all 
that, for I have found since that I have far better 
staying power And endurance, and I don't think I have 
ever felt so exhausted as I used to do before ; I have 
enjoyed excellent health ever since." 

Another correspondent assures me that he continu- 
ally felt that the discipline and training he had gone 
through for rowing purposes was of great value to him 
in a higher point of view; while in another case, the 
course of training for the University Eight was the 
means of affording relief from attacks of asthma, to 
which there was a constitutional predisposition. 

Having thus considered what have been the effects 
of the University Boat-Race on the health of those who 
have rowed, whether hurtful or beneficial, I shall next 
proceed to make a few remarks on the influences which 
are exerted on the bodily frame by hard muscular exer- 
cise ; how it acts, and what are the changes induced 
in the system. 


This question it is impossible to solve unless we 
■ first enquire what are the physiological conditions whicl;i 

conduce to the growth and development of muscle. 
The most indispensable of these conditions is the em- 
ployment of some force. If it is desired that muscles 
should increase in bulk, should become both larger and 
stronger, their action must be forcible ; mere quickness 
and celerity are insufficient; the expenditure of strength 
is also needed. Thus, for example, we do not find 
that the arms of the seamstress, who for many weary 
hours plies her busy needle, grow strong and muscular. 
There is here no forcible contraction, no obstacle to 
the rapid movement of her toiling. fingers. But when 
the smith wields his ponderous hammer, or when the 
sailor hand-over-hand ascends the rigging of his ship, 
here there is energetic contraction, and here also we 
observe a goodly development of brawny muscle. 

In rowing, muscles are in this manner forcibly plied. 
Indeed, I know no form of exercise in which so many 
muscles are brought energetically into play. It has 
been stated by a well-known authority on questions 
relating to athletic exercises, that in rowing the muscles 
of the legs and of the lower part of the trunk are those 
which bear the brunt of the labour, while the chest and 
upper extremities escape with a comparatively small 
share of the toil. Hence, we are given to understand 
that it is in the lower part of the frame of Oarsmen that 
we must more especially look for development of muscle. 
With this opinion, however, I for my part cannot coin- 
cide. I have too often, during a course of training, 
observed the biceps expand and the fore-arm increase 
in girth, seen, in fact, 

" Arms on which the standing muscles sloped, 
As slopes a wild brook o'er a little stone,'* 


to feel any doubt that the upper limbs also play a 
powerful part in the struggles of the Isis and the Cam. 
Sundry attempts have been made to define, with more 
or less precision, the particular muscles which are called 
into requisition in a Boat-Race. This is an enquiry 
which I do not propose to inflict upon my readers. It 
is of more interest to the student of anatomy than to 
the general public, but if, as has been affirmed by differ- 
ent authorities, the dorsal, the abdominal, the gluteal, 
together with the pectoral muscles, and those of the 
upper and lower extremities, are all required to assist in 
propelling a boat through the water, then assuredly but 
few portions of the Oarsman's frame can luxuriate in idle- 
ness. This will be the more apparent, when we reflect 
that whenever in a healthy subject one set of muscles is 
hardworked, the increase of bulk that usually results 
from their repeated contractions is not confined to 
them alone, but is shared by their several antagonistic 
muscles. On these latter an increased strain is neces- 
sarily laid, and in order to fneet this strain they them- 
selves undergo corresponding development. It is to 
this increase of the antagonizing groups of muscles, as a 
result of the development of those which are directly 
brought into play during "limb-work," that we must 
attribute that well-proportioned symmetry of the animal 
form which we are accustomed to admire after a course 
of training. 

When it is affirmed that rowing gives but little 
employment to the chest, it appears to me that the 
important part played by this portion of the frame 
during active exercise is in a great measure overlooked. 
Let us then consider in what way the chest is affected 
by bodily labour, when the muscles are called into 
activity, whether in rowing, in running, or during such 


a course of gymnastics as is now wisely required of 
young recruits. We find that, in the first place, the 
parts more especially exercised acquire additional bulk, 
grow both larger and stronger : and secondly, we ob- 
serve that the circumference of the chest is increased, 
it becomes both wider and deeper. I have looked over 
numerous statistics, so tabulated as to shew the physical 
value of gymnastic instruction, and these tables all 
agree in shewing that there is under such circumstances 
a coincident development both of muscles and of chest. 
This development of the chest, as I have repeatedly 
satisfied myself, is only to a very small extent due to 
the enlargement of the various muscles which surround 
its walls. That such is the case is conclusively shewn 
by the fact that the increase is not confined to the 
upper part of the thorax, where the pectoral muscles 
more especially are situated, but is even more marked 
over the middle and lower ribs. The additional thoracic 
girth, then, which is more or less attained during train- 
ing, is not due to the muscular thickening of the 
walls, but rather to the enlarged size of the cavity 
which they surround and of the enclosed organs. 

This increase is brought about in the following man- 
ner. I have already shewn that the forcible contraction 
of muscles results in their enlargement ; whether this 
enlargement is due to additional fibres being formed 
de novo, or to the original fibres becoming larger, is still 
a disputed question among physiological authorities. It 
is one which is by no means easy of solution, and in the 
present state of our knowledge we may perhaps assume 
that it depends both on the one and on the other — on 
the formation of new fibres, and on the growth of the 
old ones. With the development of particular muscles 
there is a proportionate increase in the size and perhaps 


in the habit of catching hold of a rope suspended above 
them, and throwing themselves violently upon it; in this 
manner, a sudden and excessive strain is thrown upon 
the heart, the valves of which are occasionally ruptured ; 
or an aneurism may be formed either within its own 
walls or in connection with those of some of the larger 
arteries; or perhaps one of the ventricles may actually 
give way. In my own hospital experience I have seen 
some eight or ten such cases. The last which came 
under my observation occurred to a patient who was 
compelled to carry a heavy sack of corn for a consi- 
derable distance without having the opportunity of 
taking rest on the way. He was struggling to reach 
the end of his journey, when he suddenly felt something 
give way within his chest; he experienced a rush of blood 
to the head, and fell down insensible. One of the valves 
of the left side of the heart was torn from its attachment, 
and from that moment he was never able to earn a 
shilling or to do an hour's work. Life, in so far as 
capacity for labour was concerned, was virtually at an 
end, and death approached with rapid and certain strides. 
In most cases of this grave character the general features 
of the accident are pretty much the same ; it is sudden and 
overwhelming at the time, and though perhaps after- 
wards, when complete rest is enjoined, the distressing 
symptoms may be temporarily alleviated, yet there is no 
prospect of permanent relief; for the fatal termination 
but too often proves painful in the extreme. Cases of 
this nature are forcible examples of cardiac disease 
induced by too severe a strain ; but among the 294 
University Oarsmen I have not been able to discover 
that a single accident of this kind ever occurred as a 
consequence of the Boat-Race. In two instances, as has 
been already stated, the exertions of the race are said to 


have occasioned the rupture of a blood-vessel. Yet, one 
of the men who was thus afflicted lived more than ten 
years after the race, the other survived it for upwards 
of twenty-five years, and both were in all respects equal 
to the duties of an active life. No University Oar 
appears to have been struck down by these more rapidly 
fatal forms of heart disease, and I have only met with 
one instance where I have reason to believe that an 
aneurism was induced by the exertions of a BoaC-Race. 
The subject of this accident (never connected with either 
University) was, I have been assured, notoriously care- 
less about his health and by no means a temperate liver, 
and it is to intemperance that I would ascribe the mis- 
chief in this particular case. Nay,I would go further, and 
assert unhesitatingly, that whenever by reason of some 
violent strain an accident occurs, either to the heart 
itself or to one of its great vessels, that heart Wcis not at 
the time in a perfectly healthy state. The tenacity of 
its fibres or of its lining membrane has been undermined 
either by active disease or by some one of those de- 
generative changes which are liable to occur, either as 
a consequence of alcoholic excess or as the natural ac- 
companiment of advancing years. In this opinion I am 
supported by the high authority of Professor Niemeyer, 
who distinctly asserts, in his important work on the 
theory and practice of medicine, that **the healthy heart 
never ruptures." 

Being desirous to arrive at definite conclusions based 
on fact as to what is the effect of a hard-rowing career 
on a man's constitution — ^whether generally speaking it 
proves beneficial or injurious to those who enter upon 
it, whether it renders the after health more vigorous or 
rather has a tendency to lower and undermine the bodily 
powers — I have given extracts from letters which I have 


depressing of all pastimes, the reading man's " constitu- 
tional," he will have laid up for himself a goodly supply 
of physical vigour wherewith to commence the battle of 
life. An addition of three inches to the circumference of 
the chest implies that the lungs instead of containing 
250 cubic inches of air as they did before their functional 
activity was exalted, are now capable of receiving 300 
cubic inches within their cells: the value of this aug- 
mented lung accommodation will readily be admitted. 
Suppose, for example, that a man is attacked by inflam- 
mation of the lungs, by pleurisy, or some one of the 
various forms of consumption, it may readily be con- 
ceived that in such an emergency the possession of 
enough lung tissue to admit 40 or 50 additional cubic 
inches of air will amply suffice to turn the scale on the 
side of recovery. It assists a patient successfullyto tide 
over the critical stage of his disease ; the actual crisis is 
often short, and during its height the chances of life 
mainly depend upon the amount of lung available for 
decarbonizing the blood. I would further submit that 
from such an increase of chest, depending as it does upon 
a greater influx of healthy blood, and indicating a higher 
degree of constitutional vigour, we may reasonably ex- 
pect more physical capacity for work in after-life, even 
though that work be brain-work, requiring the exercise 
of the noblest intellectual faculties; for if the brain is to 
fulfil its functions in a satisfactory manner, it must be 
liberally supplied with healthy blood. Indeed brain- 
work is peculiarly exacting in the demands which it 
makes on the vascular system. I believe it will gene- 
rally be found as a matter of daily experience, that 
although very considerable acuteness of intellect may at 
times be associated with a slightly formed and puny 
frame, still in the working of such brains we often ob- 


serve a sort of dyspeptic irritability of mind, a certain 
perverse obliquity of judgment; while on the other hand 
a manly and vigorous mind and a full deep chest — 
" mens sana in corpore sano" — are frequently united in 
the same persons. Hence the youth who at school or 
at college may perhaps have devoted more time than he 
was justified in doing to the cultivation of his muscles, 
provided he has not also acquired irretrievably idle 
habits, will, as regards health, commence life under 
more hopeful auspices than a far more industrious man 
whose thoughts have been wholly given to studious 

On the last occasion on which the baneful conse- 
quences of the University Boat-Race formed the subject 
of a newspaper controversy, an allusion was made to 
one somewhat curious effect, said to be experienced by 
those who indulge in violent exercise: I refer to the 
tranquillizing sensation known to Oarsmen as "second 
wind." By some the very existence of such a state 
has been looked upon as altogether apocryphal, while 
an attempted explanation is but ill-calculated to satisfy 
the sceptical. Now I think there are very few rowing 
men who do not believe in "second wind," who have 
not in fact in their own persons felt that after doing a 
certain amount of work in a race, they are, strange to 
say, more comfortable than immediately upon starting. 
At the commencement of the struggle, after rowing 
perhaps only one or two hundred yards, many Oars- 
men are inconvenienced by a very distressing sense of 
breathlessness, and if, as the race proceeded, this feel- 
ing became more intense, a Boat-Race certainly would 
prove no very agreeable pastime. Fortunately, how- 
ever, this dyspnoea, though unpleasant, is by no means 
lasting; it gradually passes off, and then the rower, in 



nautical phraseology, has got his "second wind." Do 
the teachings of physiology throw any light on such a 
state as this ? I believe that they do, though the expla- 
nation which lately appeared in a daily paper is mani- 
festly incorrect. It is couched in these words: "The 
great pressure for breath occurs early in a race at the 
crisis when extra respiration is required by the system, 
but the lungs have not yet expanded to the full ex- 
tent of their power ; as soon as they reach this expan- 
sion, distress subsides and exertion becomes compara- 
tively easy again ; 'second wind' has come — respiration 
does not fail again during the race." 

In reference to this hypothesis, I would remark, that 
the act of deep inspiration, the expansion of the chest, 
is regulated by the contractions of voluntary muscles; 
which are acted upon by the will, and so soon as ever 
they are called into play the chest expands in every 
direction, while the air rushes down the windpipe to 
occupy the enlarged cavity. For such a process very 
little time is needed; and, could the feeling of breathless- 
ness be got rid of by so natural and simple an expedient, 
it is very certain that the Oarsman would not allow him- 
self to be long distressed. 

I believe, however, the following considerations will 
in some degree elucidate the nature of "second wind." 
Immediately before a Boat-Race commences, there is 
usually a longer or shorter interval of rest ; during this 
period the men remain perfectly still, awaiting the ex- 
pected signal for a start : while the muscles thus remain 
inactive and relaxed, a considerable quantity of blood 
collects in the veins. Presently the word is given, the 
muscles thereupon violently and suddenly contract; in 
contracting they press forcibly upon the veins and hurry 
their contents in rapid currents into the right chambers 


of the heart ; the heart, on experiencing this influx of 
venous blood into its cavities, forcibly ejects their con-i 
tents into the arteries of the lungs, which for a time, 
become unduly gorged, occasioning a kind of temporary- 
congestion. ' This state however does not last, for sooa 
that balance between the greater and the lesser circu- 
lation which has been temporarily upset is once more 
restored : the blood is then distributed in equal quantities 
to the general system and to the lungs, and thereupon 
the rower feels less breathless and more comfortable ; he 
has fairly earned his "second wind." The explanation 
here given appears to derive some support from the fact 
that this sensation is experienced to a far greater extent 
soon after the commencement of a race, when the 
muscles have just been in a state of relaxation, than it is 
at a later period of the struggle, when special efforts are 
demanded from the men. 

I have before stated, that in discussing this subject 
several of my correspondents remark that it is only 
reasonable to assume that harm must be done by such 
trying exertion as boat-racing demands. Indeed it is 
said, "flesh and blood cannot be expected to stand so 
severe a strain." Those who hold these views, seem to 
know but little regarding the extraordinary strength of 
muscular fibre. The Rev. Professor Haughton of Dublin, 
a high authority on every subject which he investigates, 
in a Lecture delivered before the Royal Institution in the 
month of June, 1871, throws considerable light on this 
important question. He discusses the amount of work 
done by the human heart, and the manner in which its 
functions are fulfilled. "The heart," he says, "is a small 
muscle weighing only a few ounces, and it beats per- 
petually, day and night, summer and winter." Ex^ 
periments which Professor Haughton has made clearly 


demonstrate that "every ounce of a healthy heart is 
capable of lifting about 20 lbs. through one foot in a 
single minute." **But this," he remarks, "conveys no 
adequate conception of the enormous amount of work 
which that represents." He therefore devised a plan 
for the purpose of shewing his hearers how much they 
ought to wonder at the great work performed by the 
heart. "The average time," he continues, "in which the 
Oxford and Cambridge Boat-Race is rowed (and it has 
been rowed 20 times in 21 years over the same course) 
is 23 minutes and 3 J seconds, and the length of the 
course is 4*3 1 miles." From these data, and from plans 
and sections of the boats, he was enabled to determine 
the amount of work done by the muscles of the young 
men who pull in this hardly-contested race. His cal- 
culations shew tliat "during the 23 minutes the race 
lasts, every ounce of muscle in the arms and legs of the 
rower works at the rate of 20*124 lbs. lifted through one 
foot each minute." "This," the learned professor re- 
marks, "comes out to be very much like the amount of 
work that my heart is doing at this moment. Indeed, I 
am not sure that it is not doing more work than that, 
now that I am lecturing." "In the case of the young 
men, who pull in this race for 23 minutes, every ounce 
of muscle in their arms and legs gives out a force that 
in a minute would lift 20 lbs. through a foot. If any of 
you have seen" (Professor Haughton does not say that 
he has himself witnessed this painful spectacle) "the 
exhausted condition of those young men when taken 
out of their boats after 23 minutes, you will, I think, 
agree with me, that human nature could not endure that 
labour for 40 minutes; yet the heart of an old man, 
close upon 100 years of age, has worked for that 1 00 
years of his life as hard as the muscles of the young 


men that pull in the Oxford and Cambridge Eight-oared 

Now here we have, be it observed, actual demon- 
strative proof of what the human heart is capable of 
doing, and what it continues to do during life. It is 
no mere spasmodic effort, but sustained work. I cannot 
help thinking that from these premises a very different 
conclusion might legitimately have been drawn. Pro- 
fessor Haughtons experiments shew conclusively the 
extraordinary strength of striped muscular fibres, such 
as those which enter into the composition of the heart; 
but the voluntary muscles throughout the system gene- 
rally are constructed much after the same pattern, and 
contain similar striped muscular fibres. What just grounds 
are there then for assuming that these muscles are so 
much weaker than those of the heart? May we not then 
conclude, not that human nature is incapable of enduring 
such excessive labour for 40 minutes, but rather, that 
human nature is endowed with the power of undergoing 
both more violent and more prolonged exertions than 
many persons in these effeminate days appear disposed 
to admit.? At all events, I cannot help . thinking that 
the words I have quoted are likely to prove singularly 
soothing to many an old University Oar who has been 
labouring under the impression that the muscular ex- 
cesses of his youth are still likely to find him out; and 
whose serenity has been disquieted by alarming as- 
surances of a coming collapse. He has probably been 
accustomed to look back on the labours he underwent 
on the day of the race as something which in after years 
he would seldom be called upon to repeat, when here 
he is told, on the highest authority, that he has within 
him another muscle which, in spite of himself, and 
with but little to reniind him of its existence, doe^ 


proportionately as much work as he ever did in the 
Putney race. 

As a matter of experience, however, I have ascer- 
tained that it is a mistake to assume that strong men 
cannot continue to row as fast a stroke as that pulled in 
the match for forty minutes. I have been assured by 
many of the old Oars, that when in training they would 
have had no difficulty in keeping up a stroke of 38 or 
40 in a minute for even more than an hour. In point 
of fact, the exhaustion and distress consequent upon 
the race, have, I believe, been very greatly exaggerated. 
Professor Haughton speaks of the young men as being 
" taken out of the boats," as though they were so much 
fatigued that they could not leave their ship without 
assistance. I am, however, in a position to affirm that 
in all the Boat-Races I ever witnessed (and in the 
course of my life I have seen a considerable number) 
no such event ever took place. Indeed, it is marvel- 
lous how much work may be safely undertaken by a 
young man, who, to use a training phrase, is in " first- 
rate condition." Thus, I am assured by one of the 
old University Oarsmen who rowed in the year 1829, 
that, accompanied by a friend, he walked on one occa- 
sion from Cambridge to London, a distance of 5 1 miles, 
in 13 hours. The best runners are capable of accom- 
plishing ten miles within the hour, and 40 miles are said 
to have been done in four hours and three quarters. 
Feats like these are a far more severe strain on the 
constitution than the less protracted exertions of a four- 
mile Boat-Race. On the whole, although the letters I 
have received refer to almost every topic connected 
with the race, they are singularly silent regarding any 
^due distress being experienced by the rowers. I have 
)eatedly, also, conversed on this subject with some of 


the most distinguished University Oars, who have in- 
formed me, without exception, that excessive prostra- 
tion is but rarely felt. Several very successful strokes 
have assured me that they were never afraid to let 
their adversary head them in the early part of the race, 
as a thorough knowledge of their crew enabled them to 
calculate with the utmost nicety the reserve force at 
their disposal, and the exact amount of work that could 
be got out of their men. Other strokes, it is true, no less 
experienced, pursued a very different course. In their 
opinion, a stem race exercises a depressing psychical 
effect: it was, therefore, their practice to fight out the 
contest from the very commencement. On physiological 
grounds I am disposed to think that the tactics of the for- 
mer were the more correct ; for when men gradually warm 
to their work, more, as a rule, can be got out of them 
in a long race than when they are flurried at starting. 

-The letters then which I have received from the 
rowers, and the conversations I have had with many 
of them, alike testify that except in rare instances any 
approach to collapse is practically unknown. Indeed 
many Oarsmen, so far from experiencing exhaustion, 
seem to revel in the hardest spirt. At such a time well- 
trained men will firmly set their teeth, plant their feet 
against the stretchers, put their backs into the work, and 
pull their oars well home ; and in this way, thoroughly 
wound up for the struggle before them, are so far from 
falling to pieces, that they seem rather with their grand 
swinging stroke to rival the perfect precision of some 
well-arranged machine. 

It is, indeed, strange how the exaggerated ideas 
which have taken possession of the public mind re- 
garding the paralyzing exhaustion often felt by those 
who engage in this race have become so widely dis- 


I . I ^~m* 

seminated ; they certainly cannot be traced to the rowers 
themselves, but would appear rather to originate in the 
fanciful and over-timid brain of paterfamilias. To a 
man who cannot ascend his own staircase without puffing 
and wheezing, the notion of a four mile Boat-Race is 
something too horrible for contemplation. I have seen 
men, who though in years they are but little past the 
prime of life, become so thick in the wind, that when 
compelled to quicken their pace to catch an omnibus or 
a train they frequently hang out more urgent signals of 
distress than are exhibited by a well-trained Oar after a 
hard Boat-Race. In the latter case fatigue soon passes 
off, but in the former the too active traveller will often 
experience discomfort for the remainder of his journey ; 
and, in not a few instances, I have known permanent 
injury originally excited by some trivial exertion. In- 
deed, one of the three cases of heart disease to which 
I have alluded, as having proved fatal to an old Oar, 
was of this nature. The man to whom I refer rowed 
about 30 years ago. For upwards of 20 years after the 
race he enjoyed excellent health, and never considered 
himself any the worse for rowing. " He grew very stout, 
and, farming largely, over-exerted himself very much 
one day in driving some trespassing cattle out of a 
cornfield." In so doing he appears to have injured his 
heart, for from that time his health gave way, and he 
died " after a year or two's suffering from severe heart 

The particulars of this case have been kindly sup- 
plied to me by one of his relations, and strikingly 
illustrate the danger of comparatively trifling exertions 
when a man is out of training and not so young or 
tive as he once was. For in the matter of violent 
^rcise youth is a most important consideration ; many 


an athlete will perform feats of activity at 20 which no 
amount of training will enable him to accomplish at 40 
or 45. In mature manhood we often find great powers 
of endurance, but if we require both celerity and force 
combined in a high degree, we must look to youth, to 
the period of life when the elasticity of the tissues is 
Still in the ascendant. For when those internal organs 
which occupy the lower of the two great compartments 
of the trunk increase in bulk, when in the too flattering 
language of our tailors we become " a trifle wider across 
the chest," weighted with the distressing evidence of ad- 
vancing years, it is but too natural that we should look 
back with awe and wonder to the insane excesses of 
our youth. 

In discussing the effects of hard exercise it is fitting 
that I should make some reference to certain erroneous 
opinions which very generally pervade the letters of my 
correspondents, opinions which betray a wide-spread 
ignorance regarding some of the fundamental principles 
of physiology^ Thus several writers, though in perfect 
health, appear to. labour under the impression that they 
have taken something out of themselves at the Uni- 
versities, and thereby unduly taxed their constitutions. 
One of them gives expression to a very general senti- 
ment in these words : " I feel," he remarks, " that I have 
wasted, on the passing excitement of a race, the vital 
energies required for the great realities of life." 

Words such as these seem to shew that many persons 
entertain a belief that there exists in the human frame 
some general store of muscular and nervous force, which 
by over exercise may be prematurely exhausted ; and 
that one of the most serious objections to a Boat-Race 
consists in the notion that it makes a permanent de- 
duction from the vital energy of the rower. Were such 


the case we should reasonably expect to find that in 
proportion as a man leads a less active life, so will he 
possess within himself the capacity for doing more ; in 
fact, the less he trenches upon his physical capital, the 
more there will be on which to draw. This view may, 
to uninformed persons, seem sufficiently plausible, but 
in the case of the animal tissues it is certainly incor- 
rect. For the experience of pathology clearly demon- 
strates that when muscular fibre is doomed to inactivity 
for any length of time, either atrophy or some other 
degenerative change invariably supervenes. Of such 
changes we see an extreme example where a limb is 
paralyzed and incapable of movement. In some cases 
the muscles become thin and attenuated, in others there 
is an abnormal deposition of fat. When, on the con- 
trary, the different organs and tissues of the body are 
judiciously exercised ; when waste and repair go on 
side by side (the processes of rebuilding being some- 
what more energetic than those of demolition), then 
we invariably find, not only that the parts called into 
play are better adapted to perform their work, more 
capable of fulfilling their healthy functions, but that 
they also prove themselves more permanent and en- 
during. Hence, so far is the expenditure of muscular 
force from proving detrimental to the system, that it 
actually produces an opposite effect, rendering the 
tissues not only larger and tougher, but also more last- 
ing. In fact, the strength of the human frame depends 
in a great measure upon its renovation. For in pro- 
portion as animal tissues are more rapidly and energeti- 
cally renewed by molecular changes, so does their power 
increase ; moreover, the nutritive processes which ensue 
are not exhaustive in their character, but are capable of 
indefinite repetition. 


A striking illustration of the truth of what is here 
urged regarding the renovation of tissue — ^.itself depend- 
ing on the renewal of the blood — may be deduced from 
the thoroughly active lives still led by several of the 
twelve survivors of the first two crews. Energetic as 
their habits have been, and numerous as have been the 
calls on their muscles and their brains, yet their bodily 
and mental vigour still remain unimpaired. 

There is another point bearing on the selection of 
crews for such a contest as the University Boat-Race on 
which I would offer a passing remark. The question 
has been asked, how is it possible to gauge constitutional 
vigour ? for ** great muscular power by no means insures 
equal strength of the internal organs, the vital machinery 
of the body ; on the contrary, the organs of animal or 
external life and those of organic life are often inversely 
developed." Hence you may choose for your boat a 
man, who though a Hercules in outward build, is still 
unsound at the core. This objection, it appears to me, is 
more apparent than real ; at all events it derives but little 
support from the numerous letters which I have received 
regarding the health of the rowers ; generally speaking, 
those who have suffered have been more frequently 
men of a certain delicacy of fibre than those who were 
brawny and muscular. Besides, as a matter of fact, the 
great centres of organic life are in their structure very 
nearly related to the so-called organs of external life. 
The heart, the most important of these organs, is itself 
a muscle, and the vessels which issue from its cavity are 
surrounded by muscular bands. If then training be 
commenced gradually and carried out systematically, 
it will be the means of strengthening the muscles both 
of the heart and of the vascular system in a degree 
proportional to that in which it developes the voluntary 


muscles. Seeing then that these two sets of organs are 
in their functions and in their structure intimately inter- 
woven and co-related one with the other, we should 
scarcely expect to find that in the same individual the 
one set of organs should be enduring and tough while 
the other is soft and yielding. It must be further re- 
membered that the labour of the heart and of the lungs 
only stops with life itself, their vigils are sleepless, 
though sickness assail them their toil never ceases. On 
the other hand, the muscles and the limbs enjoy peri- 
odical seasons of rest, and if injury supervenes they can 
be invalided, and thus placed under the most favourable 
conditions for recovery. Although, therefore, the vital 
organs are, from the conditions under which they work, 
more liable to be damaged than those upon which the 
calls are more or less intermittent ; still I am disposed 
to think that the cases in which they are "inversely 
developed" are extremely rare, and that such a picture 
as that of the highly-trained athlete, who, though ap- 
parently full of rude health and exulting in his " superb 
muscular development," receives from a man of science 
the comforting assurance that he has a canker at the 
core, and will "never row in another match," though 
well calculated to adorn a tale, is painted rather from 
theoretical assumption than from practical observation. 
For my own part I believe that, in so far as the Uni- 
versity Oars are concerned, such a description would 
only apply to men who, presuming on their vigorous 
muscles, either over-exerted themselves without due pre- 
paration, or to those who lived a somewhat freer and more 
self-indulgent life than is compatible with athleticism. 

In considering the effect of rowing in the Universities, 
in its bearing on health, we should never forget that the 
exertions made on the river, in not a few instances. 


serve as the scapegoat for ailments originating in less 
innocent causes. On the whole the standard of morality 
at the English Universities, more especially at the better 
Colleges, is as high and as sound as that of young men 
of a corresponding age in any other walk of life. At 
the same time youth is impulsive, and where the young 
are collected together in considerable numbers, a certain 
proportion do not prove themselves as immaculate as 
could be wished. Among these irregular livers some 
will at times suffer for their sins, and on such occasions 
it is frequently sagely affirmed that " that dreadful row- 
ing has again produced its baneful effects," and we learn 
from . the lips of a Cornelia or a Phyllis, that a son or 
a brother has once more been sacrificed to the devouring 
Moloch of the Isis and the Cam. 

Were all such charges against our national pastimes 
accepted with a greedy credulity, the bill of indictment 
against these pursuits would indeed be a heavy one. 
Although, therefore, I would desire that mothers and 
sisters should live on in their state of blissful ignorance, 
I would still say to every man who desires honestly to 
investigate the influence of exercise on the health of 
athletic competitors, that he must accept with a cautious 
reserve all statements regarding the pains and sprains 
induced by rowing, more especially if they proceed from 
the fair sex; for I can assert, without fear of contra- 
diction,' that those whose professional avocations bring 
them behind the scenes have the best means of dis- 
covering that the instances in which harmless recreations 
are saddled with the odium which more legitimately be- 
longs to some guilty indulgence are by no means rare. 

One of the strongest objections urged against that 
spirit of athleticism which has taken possession of the 
Universities at the present day is, that idleness and gene- 


ral want of application are said to have sprung up" in its 
train, and are its constant accompaniment. Young men 
are sent to the Universities in order that they may receive 
a polite education, may become familiar with the writ- 
ings of the better known classical authors, that they 
may study history, mathematics and philosophy, and 
acquire some insight into the natural sciences. Will not 
then courses of hard training, extending over five or six 
weeks, materially interfere with these academical pur- 
suits, and tend to mar the undergraduate's prospect of 
University distinction, on the attainment of which his 
future career so largely depends? — does he not in this 
manner devote too large a portion of his thoughts to 
what is after all but a recreation and a pastime? On 
this subject several of my correspondents have expressed 
themselves strongly, and it is one which well deserves 
the most attentive consideration. 

With a view of putting this question to a crucial 
test, I have tabulated the Honours gained by the Eights 
in the Schools and in the Senate-house, and compared 
them with those obtained by University-men generally 
during the last forty years. The following are the re- 
sults : — 

In Oxford, between the years 1829 — 1869, 1 1,310 men 
" satisfied" the classical examiners in the honours and in 
the pass schools — of whom 515 obtained a first-class and 
915 a second. Hence it would appear that during the 
forty years which have elapsed since the Boat-Race was 
first rowed, about one man in every twenty-two who. 
passed in classics or 4*6 of the whole has obtained a first- 
class, and one in every 12*5 or just eight per cent., a 
second. Among the 147 Oxford Oarsmen six, or one in 
24*5, about four per cent, of the number, gained a first — 
and one in 11-3, about nine per cent., a second. Hence 


, — — ^ . . ■ ■ ■■ ■ . ^ I , 

taking the "first" and the "second** together (I omit 
all allusions to Moderations and other forms of Univer- 
sity distinctions, several of which were unknown at the 
time the earlier races were rowed) — it may be said that 
at Oxford the men in the Eight, in so far as may be 
judged from their classical attainments, have shewn 
themselves much on a par with the rest of the Univer- 

At Cambridge, on the other hand, the rowers who 
distinguished themselves in* the Senate-house were more 
numerous. Thus among the 147 Cambridge men — 
ten appear in the first class, five in the second, seven 
were wranglers, and twenty-one senior optimes — thus 
twenty-eight per cent, of the oars, not content with their 
laurels on the river, bore off honours also in more 
important contests. The high academical distinctions 
credited to some of these men are of deep interest, inas- 
much as they prove conclusively that mind and muscle, 
provided only they be judiciously guided, are not 
unequal yokefellows, but well able to work together. 
For of the ten first classmen three were senior classics, 
two were second in the first class, and two fourth in the 
first. Two of the three senior classics also gained the 
Colquhoun sculls. 

These instances sufficiently testify that the same 
blood may minister to the development of muscular 
fibre and to the nourishment of the brain, so that both 
the one and the other will be enabled to fulfil their 
functions in a thoroughly vigorous and healthy manner; 
muscle grappling with physical obstacles, and brain 
overcoming intellectual difficulties. If then we view the 
two Universities as one body, and compare generally the 
academical distinctions gained by the old Oars with 
those obtained by men never decorated with the blue 
U. o. 5 


ribtxm of the river, we find that in the number and still 
more in the importance of their honours, the rowers de- 
cidedly have the advantage. And many of these men 
did not content themselves with "slaking the thirst of 
early ambition" while- under the fostering care of their 
Alma Mater, but they exhibited in after-life also the 
same superiority over their fellows, the same aptitude 
in working to the front. When among 300 aquatic 
champions we find recorded the names of three bishops, 
two judges, and one learned historian (not to speak of 
the various other important posts held by University 
Oarsmen), we think it will be admitted that the fortuitous 
aggregation of 300 men can but rarely shew more con- 
spicuous examples of intellectual attainments rewarded 
with success* Hence (to use the words of one of my 
correspondents) men of well-r^ulated minds may per- 
form the l/yya (the real business) of the University, and 
at the same time enjoy their full share of the irapeftya 
(the pastimes). 

The subject of which I am now treating, the Intel- 
lectual Influence of Athleticism, has been discussed by 
one of my correspondents, Mr R. F. Clarke, late Fellow 
and Tutor of St John's College, Oxford, in a pamphlet 
published in the year 1869. " Those," he remarks, " who 
attack athleticism as the cause of our deficiencies, argue 
rather from a pre-conceived prejudice than from any 
knowledge of the facts of the case; they little think that 
the objects of their aversion and contempt are really the 
class whom they ought specially to delight to honour; 
that the 'barbarized athletes' are the intellectual ath- 
letes too. They strangely forget that the Colleges most 
distinguished on the River and in the Cricket-field are 
also most distinguished in the Class Lists, and that on 
the other hand those Colleges and Halls most prone to 


idleness and debauchery do not, except at fitful inter- 
vals, rise to prominence in athletic pursuits. The gla- 
. diatorial feats of Cowley Marsh may be a very lamenta- 
ble result of Oxford culture; and to row in the head 
boat of the river may be a very despicable ambition; 
but one or the other, so far from hindering mental energy, 
may be shewn by the clearest proof to encourage and 
develop it; for while the average of class-men in the 
University generally is 30 per cent, (from 1829 to 1869 
it was 31 per cent. J. E. M.), among cricketers it rises 
to 42, and among rowing-men to 45 per cent. ; nay, the 
very //iU of the university, the men who subsequently 
obtain open Fellowships, are more often found in their 
College Eights or Eleven than any other section of the 
community." In an appendix Mr Clarke supplies some 
statistics on which his observations are founded. What 
he says in regard to the same Colleges being distinguished 
in the Schools and on the River is, I think, fully borne 
out by a Table which I have compiled and inserted at 
the end of this volume. This Table shews the number 
of men that the different Colleges of Oxford and Cam- 
bridge have supplied to the Eights; and those who are 
acquainted with the inner life of the two Universities 
will doubtless pretty generally admit that the Colleges 
which have furnished the largest contingents to the 
Boats, are also those in which the general tone of under- 
graduate life, the mental and social culture among the 
students, have been most satisfactory. 

The enquiries then of Mr Clarke, coupled with my 
own investigations, prove conclusively that so long as 
moderation is observed, athletic pursuits need not debar 
a young man from cultivating the attractive society 
of the Muses. Two or three hours passed on the 
river constitute no very heavy tax on the 15 or 16 of 



which our waking day consists. If, during a Coll^^e 
career, six of these hours be applied to diligent study, 
they will be amply sufficient for intellectual culture 
and the acquisition of knowledge. In such a division 
of our time, eight or nine hours would be given to 
reading and exercise, and the remaining six or seven 
allqtted to meals, social intercourse, and all those varied 
diversions and eccentricities which spring in such prolific 
profusion from the fertile fancy of the undergraduate 
mind. On such a bill of fare many a man has flourished 
both physically and mentally, has rowed in the Eight, 
and taken a First. The idlest men at Oxford and Cam- 
bridge, the " Dundrearies" of the Universities, will not 
endure the self-sacrifices that are needed for an honest 
course of training, but find such exertions altogether 
alien to the bias of their minds. 

A word of caution is perhaps here necessary, for the 
observation of others and considerable personal expe- 
rience have satisfied me, that however vigorous a con- 
stitution may be, the supplies of nerve force available 
are still limited. These stores of nervous energy are 
recruited out of the blood, chiefly during the hours of 
sleep. Under the influence of the will I believe that this 
force can be directed into various channels and applied 
to wholly different purposes. It may be expended on 
the movements of the voluntary muscles, as when exer- 
cise is taken, or it may be devoted to some one of the 
varied forms of mental culture, or it may furnish the 
stimuli needed for the gratification of the pleasures of 
sense; a portion likewise is required for the important 
processes of digestion, secretion and nutrition. Thus 
we see that the store of nervous force within our 
frames may minister to motion, to thought, or to sen- 
sation, and where these functions of nerve tissue are so 


exercised that there is no excess in any direction, there 
we are accustomed to see a well-regulated mind, and 
there also we expect to find that the physical require- 
ments of the system will be duly attended to. 

Inasmuch then as there lies within each of us a 
well-spring of nervous energy renewed daily, and pecu- 
liarly vigorous in the season of youth, a power which 
though frequently impelling men to commit excesses, 
can still be directed into healthy and innocent channels, 
it is important that in so complicated a machine the dis- 
tribution of this force should be evenly balanced, and no 
part be permitted to absorb more than its due share of 
the physical capital. These reflections naturally suggest 
the question, whether such hard work as is needed in the 
training for an University match, if maintained for any 
length of time, does not necessitate the expenditure of 
so large an amount of nervous force on the contraction 
of muscles, as will encroach unduly on what should legi- 
timately be applied to mental exercitation. These words 
of warning however are addressed rather to those who, in 
the busy whirl of Regattas and Cricket Matches, are in a 
sort of perpetual training during all seasons of the year, 
than to others who rest satisfied with one or two Putney 
races and with the labour needed in their College Boats. 
The opponents of these pastimes are accustomed to urge 
(and they do so, I grant, with very considerable justice) 
that they find no fault with young men for spending 
several hours daily on healthy exercise, but they do 
protest against that spirit of competitive emulation which 
is so closely allied with the prosecution of Athleticism ;. 
that blind infatuation which seems to hold its votaries 
in thraldom. 

The rising generation are not satisfied with expending 
a large portion of their nervous energy on the contraction 


of their muscles in propelling their boats, but when they 
arc out of those boats, even at times when their books 
lie open before them, their thoughts and their conversa* 
lion are directed rather to the chances of making another 
bump, than to mastering the difficulties of i£schylus or 
Thucydides ; indeed the minds of many young men in 
the present day seem to be alive to no other questions 
than those which relate to the cultivation of their mus- 
cles. Unfortunately for them this is a species of im- 
provement which many parents feel but little disposed 
to appreciate ; they did not send their sons to the Uni- 
versities for the purpose of becoming Acrobats. They 
look forward to the return of their offspring for their 
numerous and long vacations with anxious expectation. 
They have heard of strange innovations at the Universi- 
ties; Ritualistic excesses; Latitudinarian proclivities; 
Socialistic crotchets ; Darwinian theories of Simian de- 
scent ; the dangerous intrusion of "sweet girl-graduates" 
at lectures and in common-rooms ; in a word, all the wild 
phases of thought and feeling which prevail in these 
mighty centres of intellectual activity will soon be made 
clear to them. 

But when the hope of the house revisits his home 
and is eagerly interrogated on ail the stirring topics of 
the day — his mind is a blank. He can indeed tell the 
cricketing prospects of his College and the chances of 
his boat. He never wearies of descanting on the unfal- 
tering pluck of his Stroke ; the free-hitting and consum- 
mate generalship of the Captain of his Eleven ; or the 
splendid rush by which the "odd event" was secured. 
At times perhaps, melted by paternal generosity, he will 
give utterance to his own dearest aspirations, and with 
faltering voice confide to the parent whose heart is set 
upon academical distinctions, that University Honours 


are a delusion and a snare, little valued \ by '* good 
fellows" of the present day ; while, if fortune prove pro- 
pitious, it is not impossible that his name may yet be 
known to fame as the proud father of a "varsity oar." 
This is no exaggerated picture of the rage for athletics 
which obtains at our Universities in the present day. 
Nevertheless, until study becomes more attractive to 
young men, or until the great importance of early appli- 
cation to literary pursuits is more generally appreciated, 
how to preserve a combination of physical with mental 
development is a problem which demands the earnest 
attention of all who are engaged in the work of edu- 

It must be remembered also that a large proportion 
of the persons who in these days send their sons to 
public schools and the Universities, are more desirous 
that they should profit by the social influences which 
will there surround them, than that they should turn out 
studious and literary men. " My son is not required to 
make his own living ; thank God I have enough both for 
him and for myself." Such sentiments are entertained by 
many ambitious fathers who, far from viewing our clas- 
sical seats of learning solely as the congenial homes of 
polite literature, fondly hope through the kindly arms of 
Alma Mater to gratify their own moneyed thirst for social 
position. To a parent who himself perhaps has pro- 
bably only received what is called " a sound commercial 
education," it appears no small achievement on the part 
of his progeny if he succeeds in matriculating at a good 
College ; and should he be fortunate enough to obtain a 
Degree, the event will be celebrated in enthusiastic 
paeans. For young men of this class, who are not ex- 
pected by their friends to put high pressure on their 
brains, and for others who have no aptitude for any kind 


of study, it is very fortunate that nature provides a 
safety-valve for the exuberance of youthful vigour in 
wholesome exercise; and this outlet for superfluous 
eneigy, though by many deemed trivial, is at least tho- 
roughly harmless and innocent, by no means a small 
recommendation. Compare, for example, such a subject 
of interest as is afforded by a Boat-Race, with the con- 
versation and amusements which absorb the thoughts 
of the idle and the dissolute. It will readily be granted, 
that whenever a young man determines to excel in 
such a contest, he immediately imposes on himself a 
very considerable degree of restraint. Every excess in 
diet is avoided, every irregularity that could interfere 
with the hopes which have suddenly become the all- 
important object of youthful ambition is manfully 
checked; a change comes over the whole character. 
The unwholesome productions of the pastry-cook now 
lose their attractions ; the narcotizing fumes of the fra- 
grant Havannah cease to soothe; the deep-drawn 
draughts from the oft-replenished tankard are but rarely 
quaffed. All these hitherto prized excesses are at 
once stoically abandoned. "Drink," says the future 
Milo, "is bad for the wind, pastry produces internal 
fat, tobacco blunts the keen edge of the sight and 
makes the hand unsteady ; all therefore must be care- 
fully eschewed." Nor is such self-imposed restraint 
to be lightly esteemed ; for in this way, by little and 
little, habits are formed, and wholesome moral discipline 
vigilantly carried out. Those who know the tempta- 
tions of school-life, the snares surrounding young men 
at the Universities, when for the first time they begin 
life as their own masters, with more money than they 
ever had before, with dangerous opportunities of con- 
tracting debt, with ample leisure, with facilities for self- 


- - — — — . ■ - - - — ——' I 

indulgence immensely increased by the rapidity of loco- 
motion ; those, I maintain, who are acquainted with all 
these enticing allurements of academic life may justly 
feel thankful that reliance can be placed on their sons, 
even though that confidence be solely based on the 
regular habits inseparable from athletic aspirations. In 
a large proportion of cases a young man's future career 
at the University is determined during the course of his 
first Term. If he applies himself to studious pursuits, or 
prosecutes energetically some one of those forms of ath- 
leticism which necessitate a strict course of training, the 
probabilities are that even though his course in after life 
may not turn out particularly brilliant, it will at all 
events be respectable ; on the other hand, if his ambition 
be thoroughly grovelling, if his thoughts soar no higher 
than " to do the High," or to saunter about King's Parade, 
apeing the strangest eccentricities of attire during the 
day, and making the night hideous with wild revelry and 
buffoonery, the sooner he be removed from the Univer- 
sity the happier it will be for his friends and for any 
remnants of reputation which may yet remain to him. 

In the foregoing pages I have endeavoured to shew, 
that although such work as is required for the Eights 
at Putney is no doubt severe, still, provided the 
rowers be men of robust frames and sound constitutions, 
and are likewise carefully trained, it is not likely to 
be followed by injurious consequences. At the same 
time, I am bound to confess that a large proportion of 
the Oars do not undergo that continuous and gradual 
preparation which on physiological grounds I should 
be disposed to recommend; and the wonder is that so 
many escape unharmed. How, for example, are the 
men usually selected for the University Race? Sixteen 
Oarsmen are chosen by the Captain from among the dif- 


ferent Colleges, and set to row in a couple of eight-oar 
boats. After pulling together for a short time, they are 
called upon to contend against each other. These boats 
are known at the Universities as the Trial Eights; an 
appropriate name in more senses than one. Not a few 
of my correspondents assure me, that though they never 
felt any inconvenience from rowing at Putney, they were 
much distressed by this trial race — and seeing that many 
of them were at the time but imperfectly trained, it 
would have been strange indeed had they not felt ex- 
hausted. Besides, what is such a trial intended to shew? 
It gives very little information regarding the individual 
merits of the different men who row in the two boats. 
Indeed, in some cases it is calculated to mislead. We 
find, for example, that some rowers are always more 
or less in a state of training; they are usually spare, 
wiry men, equal at all times to undergo a certain amount 
of exertion without experiencing much discomfort. Others 
again, often men of more robust constitution, carry a 
certain amount of fat, which requires fineing down before 
they are in a fit state to take hard exercise. Trial Eights 
would doubtless, however, serve a useful purpose pro- 
vided the two crews were not matched against each 
other in a race. A desire to obtain a place in "the 
boat" urges the Oars to exert themselves to the utmost. 
Suppose then they have taken the trouble to undergo a 
regular course of preparation for this contest: in that 
case there is a danger of their not being in so satisfactory 
a state of health when training is really needed for the 
Putney struggle ; such men by too continuous training 
having become, in boating parlance, stale. For it must 
never be forgotten, that although, when trained, a strong 
man experiences a sensation of as nearly perfect health 
as it is possible to enjoy, still this hygienic state is one 


of high tension, unnatural and forced. It is in fact one 
in which many disorders, more especially those of an 
inflammatory type, are apt to assail the system with 
marked intensity: and Aristotle is justified in saying 
that the high condition attained by athletes is a peril- 
ous sort of health, A course of hard training there- 
fore should not be taken unnecessarily, nor yet too 

If, on the other hand, the rpwers at the time they con- 
tend in these Trial Eights are not well prepared (which 
is the more likely of the two), there is considerable risk 
of the exertion proving injurious. In all cases in which 
it is desired to develope the strength of a set of men to 
the utmost possible extent with a view of enabling them 
to undertake some great physical effort, the secret of a 
trainer's success will in no small measure depend upon 
the exercise being at first very moderate, and afterwards 
gradually increased. In this manner, day by day, the 
frame acquires additional strength, and is thus enabled 
successfully to meet calls of a more arduous nature; the 
muscles grow hard and firm, the superfluous fat is re- 
moved, and the vascular system strengthened to bear 
the additional strain it is intended to endure. So long 
as training is conducted on these principles, the powers 
of the body being slowly and systematically called out, 
the process of preparation will proceed satisfactorily; 
but let this plan of procedure once be interrupted and 
an undue stress laid upon muscles but partially trained, 
there must be a certain risk of reaction. For whenever 
animal tissue is over exercised, nutrition for a time is 
more or less checked. 

So. long then as these Trial Eights avoid all compe- 
tition with each other, and the crews of which they are 
composed content themselves with rowing a long steady 


Stroke under competent coaches, they will find that their 
powers of endurance and their skill in handling the oar 
will alike improve. I believe that these boats might with 
advantage be kept at work during the whole of the 
Michaelmas term and the early portion of the Lent term. 
During this time various changes should be made in the 
crews with a view of securing the most efficient men, 
preference being given to those who when tested appear 
to display the greatest amount of stamina, and to thrive 
upon their work. 

When at length the time of actual preparation for 
the race arrives, twelve of the sixteen Oarsmen should 
together commence a regular course of training, an eight 
and a four being kept in a constant state of practice. 
When so severe a race as the University Match is in pro- 
spect, it would be good generalship to keep in reserve an 
auxiliary four, from which unexpected vacancies might 
be filled* I have been assured by several of the old 
Oars to whom I have referred as injured, that they 
persevered in rowing even when unfit to do so, from not 
wishing to disarrange the crew at the last hour. In 
spite, however, of the pluck which many men have thus 
exhibited in sticking to their ships when virtually in- 
valided, the recorded cases are by no means rare in 
which an attack of indisposition has proved so severe 
that it was found necessary at the last moment to sub- 
stitute an untrained man. All risk of such misadventure 
might be avoided by the institution of these auxiliary 
fours. By their aid also it would be possible to afford 
to many excellent but not over robust Oarsmen an oc- 
casional day's rest And at the same time, if some of 
those who at the commencement of their training ap- 
peared very promising, belied the hopes they had raised, 
their places might be supplied by more apt successors. 



Other forms of competition on the river, denounced in 
strong terms by not a few of the " Oars," are the races 
known in the universities as the " Scratch-Fours." A 
considerable number of men, ambitious of obtaining a 
tankard (the "pot-hunters" of the river), and so of gain- 
ing a sort of spurious aquatic renown, pay some small 
entrance fee and send in their names as prepared to 
contend. The rowers thus entered are distributed by 
lot among the different boats, good and bad being for the 
time indiscriminately associated. Thus unequally yoked 
they struggle for the victory. To the indifferent Oars- 
men it may perhaps be a source of pride to have toiled 
in the same ship with one of the University Crew, but 
how the latter can appreciate the heterogeneous company 
among whom his lot is cast is more difficult to explain. 
The style of rowing of the two men is totally different : 
the one would fain pull his oar well through the water, 
taking care to finish his stroke; the other meanwhile 
indulges in eccentric and spasmodic jerks, not un- 
frequently delaying the progress of the boat by the cap- 
ture of phantom crustaceans. The unsightly appear- 
ance of a boat propelled after such a fashion (little re- 
gard being paid either to time or swing) is sufficiently 
to be deprecated by all lovers of good rowing; and in- 
asmuch as these races are usually rowed without any 
sort of training and often extend over several days, they 
are in not a few instances, sorely trying to the men who 
endeavour honestly to do their work, and in some cases 
are even likely to prove injurious. They are destructive 
also to good rowing, for by engaging in them there is 
more risk of a good Oar contracting faults and adapt- 
ing his stroke to the vagaries of his comrades, than hope 
of an indifferent Oar being permanently improved by his 
fortuitous association with high-class shipmates. 


There are other races also on which a word of warning 
may usefully be expended : I refer to those which are 
annually contested between the second boats of the 
different Colleges. There are men who consider it below 
their dignity to prepare themselves in anyway for a "tor- 
pid race;" and in some cases are so. little careful about 
their health as to take their places in the boats immediately 
after indulging in a heavy meal, sometimes supplemented 
by sherry-cobbler and ices. Rowing under such conditions, 
it is not surprising that their appearance is often a very 
sorry one. After a short spirt they may be seen rolling 
about on their seats more like men suffering from the 
agonies of sea sickness than pursuing a pleasurable re- 
creation. In this manner they not only pull without 
any sort of training, but exert themselves at a time when 
the system is least able to bear the strain. Such folly 
would never be permitted by any trainer, however in- 
experienced. Indeed, the danger of heedlessly under- 
taking violent exercise is so well understood in our 
military gymnasia, that the men while practising their 
exercises are carefully watched, and whenever undue 
distress is exhibited, their work is immediately lessened. 
This procedure is based upon the soundest physiological 

From the importance which I have attached to the 
encouragement of rowing and other muscular exercises, 
it- must not be supposed that I would undervalue those 
studies for the cultivation of which the Universities were 
founded, and that mental training which they are pecu- 
liarly calculated to supply. Were our national games 
incompatible with the successful prosecution of a polite 
education, then assuredly such recreations should be in 
every way discouraged. But the statistics I have ad- 
vanced regarding the distinctions gained by rowing men 


prove conclusively that mental vigour, far from being 
hindered by bodily activity, is thereby materially pro- 

Dr Beddoe in his paper " On the Stature and Bulk 
of Man in the British Isles," corroborates the statements 
I have here made when he remarks : " If we examine 
only a single race, or reputed race at a time, we shall 
find that wherever that race attains its maximum of 
physical development it rises highest in energy and 
moral vigour." As an illustration, Dr Beddoe refers to 
" Scotland in general, to Northumberland, Cumberland, 
parts of Yorkshire and Cornwall, as the portions of 
Great Britain which produce the finest and largest 
men," and observes that " it will be acknowledged that 
they also yield more than their share of ability and 
energy for the national benefit." This, be it remem- 
bered, is no mere theoretical assumption, but an opinion 
based upon statistics, the result of extensive and original 

I would further ui^e that if (as I have attempted to 
shew) physical development is of the last importance 
both to individuals and to nations, it will be generally 
admitted that the years which young men spend at the 
Universities are those in which active exercise proves 
peculiarly beneficial in strengthening the frame, for 
then growth is comparatively in abeyance while de- 
velopment is unusually energetic. The osseous system 
is mapped out, but the bones are not thoroughly set. 
They are still as it were veiy malleable, and the car- 
tilages also are prepared to yield, while the chest may 
be taught to enlarge its boundaries. Many a youth 
who was perhaps shooting up a mere weed, slight, frail, 
and tall, has, by a judicious course of physical in- 
struction, been moulded into a robust and well-built 


man. In examining patients for Insurance Companies, 
I have frequently refused the lives of young persons on 
the ground that their chests were narrow and shallow. In 
several instances, however, these thoracic defects have 
been corrected by a systematic course of gymnastic 
exercises, justifying me ^t a later period in recommend- 
ing their acceptance. At no time, and in no place, 
could every useful variety of exercise be more advan- 
tageously carried out than at Oxford and Cambridge. 
Without in any way detracting from the educational 
value of our old Universities, they might, for the class 
by which they are frequented, serve as valuable national 
gymnasia; colleges for the training of the mind, and 
schools also for the development of physical vigour. 
This adaptation of one and the same Institution to 
two such apparently opposite subjects of instruction 
was well seen in the ancient Gymnasia, more especially 
in the Academia and Lycaeum at Athens, where the 
Sophronistae (or teachers of wisdom) occupied an inferior 
station to the Gymnasiarchs. Nor must it be forgotten, 
that when the spirit of luxurious effeminacy reached 
such a height among the youth of Greece and of 
Rome that the Gymnasia were neglected and forsaken, 
national decadence rapidly supervened. 

Unmindful of such lessons as these, many men look 
upon the cultivation of their minds as a sacred duty, 
while they utterly neglect the comparatively easy task 
of keeping their bodies in working order ; and yet it is 
a question whether attention to bodily culture is not of 
even more importance to the well-being^ of our race. 
For we should never forget that outward form is more 
surely transmitted to a man's descendants than mental 
qualities, however high. Parents gifted with rare abilities 
are often humiliated at observing the painful dulness 


which is apparent in their offspring, while those who 
are sound in constitutipn and powerful in frame are 
but rarely disquieted by the sickliness of their children. 
The sturdy grenadiers of Frederick William L, married 
to wives of surpassing stature, were the progenitors of 
a population which still supplies the most imposing 
Guardsmen of the German Emperor. Thus we find that 
in the vast majority of cases physical form is bequeathed 
from sire to son ; and, inasmuch as athletic exercises 
are well qualified to develop the manly graces, they have 
a material influence on the improvement of our race. 
I feel persuaded that if every youth on attaining man's 
estate, and to a certain extent every woman also, were 
compelled to take just so much exercise as would call 
out the physical resources latent within them, the gain 
to our national health would be something marvellous. 
Scrofula, consumption, insanity, and other hereditary 
diseases, which are holding each succeeding generation 
in a firmer grip, would be sensibly diminished, while 
a far healthier tone would pervade public morals. A 
sound mind in a sound body requires other recreations 
than those supplied by the Casino and the Music-hall. 

In the preceding paragraph I have attempted to 
shew that a robust constitution is the most precious 
heirloom which a parent can pass on to his children; 
and yet there are many persons who by undertaking 
more work than they are capable of accomplishing, 
materially injure their health, thus inflicting a heavy 
penalty on yet unborn generations. Now although, 
as I have shewn, men who indulge in muscular excesses 
may injure themselves, still I am disposed to believe 
that the harm done is solely personal, and but rarely 
likely to prove hereditary. More than one of those 
whose experience is recorded among my ''injured Oars- 
U. O. 6 


men," has assured me that if they suffered in their- 
own persons from over exertion, the punishment has 
fallen on their own heads alone, not being transmitted 
to their offspring, who are spoken of as remarkably- 
strong and robust. When health fails as a consequence 
of sedentary pursuits, or too severe mental application, 
the brain and nervous system being overwrought, traces 
of weakness are often but too visible in the children. 
The studious man as he pores over his . books, burning 
the midnight oil in the solitude of his chamber, regard- 
less of the claims of his bodily frame, observes with 
anxiety unmistakable indications of failing power. The 
stoop in his once erect form, the drooping shoulders, the 
projecting collar bones, the receding ribs, the outstand- 
ing shoulderblades, each and all speak in language too 
plain to be misinterpreted of constitutional decay and 
of shrunk and atrophied lungs, into which thinner and 
poorer streams of blood arc propelled by the heart. 
Nor arc the consequences of such impaired health fleet- 
ing or ephemeral. These outward and visible signs of 
lagging energy are the mournful heritage of a man's 
descendants ; and if sickness be a frequent appanage to 
his household, the cause we imagine is sufficiently mani- 
fest. Similar remarks apply with equal justice to a 
large and rapidly increasing portion of our population, 
to men and women whose days are passed in unwhole- 
some and confined pursuits — whose bones and muscles 
never grow strong, whose constitutions never become 
robust. The best lives in the country districts, allured by 
the high wages and temptations of the cities, are yearly 
absorbed in increasing numbers by these populous 
centn.\s of wealth and industry ; there, toiling in close 
chambers, amid the noisy whirl and stifling atmosphere 
around tlic busy Stcam-Engine, they speedily dctcrio- 


rate — alcoholized, syphilized, tainted with scrofula and 
other constitutional diseases, they become a feeble sickly 
race, a prey to every passing epidemic ; struck down by 
the cold blast of winter or the sultry heat of the sum- 
mer's sun, they are the mere sport of the seasons^ 
Among these people the want of physical vigour is 
portrayed in every lineament and tissue — the muscles 
are pale and flaccid, the bones soft and crooked ; the 
joints large and distorted; the cheeks sunk, blanched, 
and flabby ; the skin thin and transparent ; the eye dull 
and lustreless ; the hair dry. and crisp, while the teeth 
crumble away almost before they are formed. With 
such degenerate citizens the larger towns in the manu- 
facturing districts are fast becoming peopled. The 
enervating avocations in which these operatives are 
engaged add immensely to individual and national 
wealth; but wealth not associated with health must 
eventually prove but a sorry and unstable possession 
to a nation, the duration of whose empire will assuredly 
be proportioned to the hardihood of her sons. 

As physician to the Salford Hospital and afterwards 
to the Manchester Infirmary, I have enjoyed large 
opportunities of personally gauging the physique of a 
very numerous section of the population of this country, 
and my experience convinces me that the great majority 
of them are an undergrown, sickly, and degenerate race ; 
not ten in a hundred of those who present themselves 
before me are possessed of well-formed chests. The 
stunted receptacle which contains the lungs is incapable 
of healthy expansion ; the ribs are bent, crooked, and 
rigidly stiff". The air also does not enter its cells with 
that breezy influx which characterizes the flow of the 
healthy aerial tide as it traverses the lungs. The opinion 
I have formed regarding these people is not confined 



to the experience of a hospital, where the patients 
usually belong to the poorer class of artizans, but it is 
based likewise on what I have seen of them when 
assembled together during their holidays at places of 
public amusement and resort. At such times the Guar- 
dians of public order may be observed stalking along 
overtopping the masses by head and shoulders as though 
belonging to a different race. A physical census shew- 
ing the height, weight, chest-measurement, and de- 
formities of our urban population would bring to light 
some startling revelations. The investigations of Dr 
Beddoe shew that there are country districts in this 
island peopled by men whose average height is S feet 
ir28 and their average weight 199 lbs.; while, on the 
other hand, among the Spitalfields weavers in London 
the average height sinks to 5 feet 1*40, and the weight 
to ic61bs. The skill of the tailor and the constructive 
ingenuity of the milliner are invoked to veil those defects 
of form, which, under the severe simplicity of Spartan 
attire, would have been brought to light, and have 
led philanthropists to 

** Moralize on the decay 
Of English strength in modem day." 

The three Regiments of British soldiers who in the 
month of July, 1809, marched 62 miles in 26 hours, each 
man carrying a weight of between 50 and 60 lbs., and 
leaving only 17 stragglers on the way, in order that they 
might share in the perils and glory of the Battle of 
Talavera, must have been not only in degree but in 
kind, totally different from those of their descendants 
who are now herded together in the manufacturing dis- 

Thus then, there are amongst us influences which are 
insidiously sapping the foundations of our national phy- 


^ ■ ■ ^— ■ ■ ^^ — »■■■ I- — ■— ■ ■■■■■■■l» I !■■■■ — ^— I III I ■■ M W^— ^^B^— 

sique; and these influences, far from being confined to 
any one section of the community, more or less pervade 
all classes of the population. The enervating accom- 
paniments of a more advanced civilization daily en* 
croach on the idyllic life of our rural peasants ; com- 
paratively few of whom, in the present day, can rival 
their fathers in the severe labours of mowing, ploughing 
and thrashing. •Such work is now done more speedily, 
more efficiently, and more economically through the 
agency of machinery. In fact the S team-Engine has 
very generally supplanted hand-labour, and thus the 
strain heretofore. associated with physical toil has been 
diverted from the hand to the head, from muscles to 
brain, from a part of the system which is renovated by 
healthy exercise, to one which in these, days is suffi- 
ciently stimulated, and too often seriously overwrought. 
Who has not felt how far more sound and refreshing 
is that sleep which follows a day spent in manual 
labour (in " the sweat of the brow"), than those fever- 
ish slumbers to which, after severe mental application, 
though the body may submit, yet the mind restlessly 
rebels ? 

In other walks of life, also, everything i& done with a 
view of saving all expenditure of muscular force. What, 
for example, is the amount of exercise taken daily by 
our ordinary English ratepayer } We will suppose that 
he is in comfortable circumstances, thoroughly respect- 
able, indeed respected likewise ; a man on whom fortune 
in her bounty has perhaps lavished municipal honours 
and the proud distinction of a Civic Gown. Such a man 
is rafely to be seen walking; in fact, in his eyes it is 
looked upon as a somewhat vulgar mode of progression. 
Professor Parkes calculates that a healthy man ought ta 
take a daily amount of exercise equivalent to a walk 


of nine miles. Men such as these rarely walk nine miles 
in a fortnight ; for in going to their business and in re- 
turning to the place from whence they came, they either 
'* ride in the bus," take the underground railway, or call 
a hansom; They shrink from even the simplest forms 
of physical activity. The carrying of an umbrella or 
a stick ; the carving of a joint of meat ; the brushing 
of the hair ; these are the most severe 'Strains they im- 
pose upon their muscles. The inaptitude of a man like 
this for hard work is readily explained by his education 
and antecedents; at the age of 14 or 1$ he is removed 
from school and placed in an office, where he " acquires 
business habits;" an initiation into the mysteries of 
trade, which usually consists of sitting on a high stool 
in stuffy air for eight or nine hours a day.; often far 
longer than is at all required for the fulfilment of his 
work, while he is rarely permitted to indulge in any kind 
of active exercise. To a youth of this age an occasional 
Cricket-match, a jgame of football, or a row on the river, 
would prove an invaluable boon, a very elixir of life at 
a time when his whole system is pining for development. 
But these recreations are looked upon with suspicion by 
his employers as likely to bring the "house" into disre- 
pute. Even when his services are not actually needqd 
he is still doomed to loll over the weary desk, because 
forsooth it is the orthodox way of spending the day. At 
five or six o'clock he returns to his lodgings, jaded and 
weary, not so much with the work that he has done, as 
with the depressing influences which surround his occu- 
pation. After a while say he becomes a successful man of 
business. He makes money and marries young. Years 
revolve, and in course of time he takes his numerous 
|)rogeny to some sea-side watering-place. And how is 
the holiday spent } not in long walks among the moun- 


tains with which he is surrounded, an exercise which 
would year by year renew the flagging energies of his 
frame; not in **a long and a strong pull" on the sea; 
but in loitering about the beach, in watching the bathing- 
tnachines, in gazing at Punch and Judy, in picking 
shrimps and in listening to the discordant melodies of 
rival German bands. Should any of my readers be dis- 
posed to question the truth of the picture here drawn, 
let him visit one of the holiday resorts which abound in 
some of the more mountainous districts of Great Britain, 
and he will be surprised to find that while our fashion- 
able watering-places are swarming with tourists, com- 
paratively few of these excursionists possess sufficient 
Spirit of adventure to sally forth among the hills. Such 
are some of " y* manners and y^ customs" of the model 
family man of the present day- To the inexperienced 
eye he is the very picture of rude health, the incarnation 
of strength and solidity ; but if we are admitted behind 
the scenes, and have occasion to test his physical capa- 
city, what do we then discover.? We interrogate the 
chest, but we do not here find that rise and fall of its 
Walls which are justly associated with constitutional 
Vigour. We direct the subject of our scrutiny to breathe 
fast and deep, and he attempts to do so, but instead of 
hearing the breezy ingress and egress of health-impart- 
ing currents of air, we get a jerky contraction of the 
muscles of the neck, an upheaving of the shoulders, and 
a sudden descent of the diaphragm, but no honest ex- 
pansion of the thoracic cavity. When the movements 
of the chest are cramped or confined in the manner de- 
scribed, the Residual and Supplemental air which the 
lungs always contain to a greater or lesser extent, must 
be present in excess, while the decarbonization of the 
fclood will be proportionately hindered. There is in fact 


neither that mobility of the walls of the chest nor that 
resiliency of the lungs which we are accustomed to ob- 
serve in thoroughly active persons* 

In examining such lives for Insurance Companies, 
and at other times, I constantly find that though a chest 
may measure upwards of 40 inches in circumference, it 
is not the storehouse of constitutional vigour which its 
possessor fondly imagines: the diaphragm encroaches 
upon its boundaries, the lung tissue is wanting in elasti- 
city, while the walls of the chest are padded with cellular 
and adipose tissue to as great an extent as the rest of the 
system. Had the physical training of such an one been 
judiciously conducted at the time when his bones were 
still pliant, he might have been moulded into a strong* 
man. But his muscular education was cruelly neglected, 
and hence it is no subject for surprise that we should 
often learn from his own lips that his apparent strength 
is deceptive, that his constitution demands much nursing 
and care ; the slightest exposure to draught is followed 
by a painful attack of rheumatism, a whiff of cold air 
touches his bronchial tubes, that he must be careful in 
what he eats, drinks and avoids : he is a martyr to vari- 
ous dyspeptic disturbances, he has long been compelled 
to forego his Beer, and Champagne, unless it be very dry, 
must be well-nigh eschewed. After these observations, 
it need excite no surprise to hear that such a being is to 
all intents and purposes an old man at the age of 40- 
The suppleness of his limbs is already on the wane, he 
walks perhaps with a certain dignity of carriage, but his 
action is decidedly stiff. When men like these (often 
possessed of more wealth than they have been educated 
to spend) are advised to try the effect of an entire 
change of habit, to retire from their counting-houses, 
lead an active life, and so endeavour to arrest those 


destructive changes which, from want of exercise, are 
assailing their frames, it is usual to hear that holidays 
are irksome; that, as they have never been trained to 
enjoy the pleasures of the country, such an existence 
would be utterly distasteful to them, and time would 
hang heavy on their hands. 

Examples such as these should serve as warnings to 
a numerous class of business-men. In youth and in 
early manhood their lives are often needlessly seden- 
tary and inactive; it is not therefore surprising that 
pursuits and recreations which if periodically practised 
from boyhood are well calculated to prolong existence, 
should, when thus tardily wooed in later years, refuse 
to smile on the evening of life. Such men are often 
constrained to spend their fortunes on Pictures, Statues 
and works of Art, which in many instances they are but 
little qualified to appreciate or to understand. Com- 
pare for a moment the existence of such a father with 
the life of his more fortunate son, who is sent to a 
Public School and afterwards to the University. From 
his earliest boyhood he is trained in every variety of 
manly exercise; he rides, shoots, rows, plays at cricket, 
and is an adept at athletics • his muscular propensities 
are such as to arouse the fears of his anxious parents ; 
who are lost in wonder at the suicidal folly of their off- 
spring. In spite however of their gloomy forebodings, 
that physical collapse which they so surely anticipated 
delays its advent, and the son who was foredoomed to an 
early decease, grows up to manhood vigorous and strong. 
Having once fairly developed his system, having put on 
chest and muscle, even should it be his lot to follow the 
pursuits of a man of business, he will be able to enjoy 
life, and look forward to his annual holiday with feelings 
of keen delight. In fact, whether his vacation be spent 


among the mountains of Switzerland, or upon the Scotch 
moors, or amid the Welsh hills, he will find no difficulty 
in passing his time. He will be able to walk for six or 
eight hours a day without discomfort, and in this manner, 
building up new tissues and casting off such as are effete, 
his season of leisure will not prove tediously long, nor 
will he be likely to pine for a return to the grimy sur- 
roundings of a city warehouse. 

If the remarks which I have made regarding the bene- 
fits of exercise be true, they will in all probability have 
an important bearing in that wide-spread and increasing 
craze for Competitive Examinations which is a pet hobby 
among many leading men of the day. As a natural con- 
sequence, we find that various important offices of trust, 
whether connected with military, diplomatic, colonial 
or Indian appointments, either now are, or are rapidly 
becoming, the reward of the candidate who has been 
most successfully crammed. Had the qualifications of 
the Duke of Wellington, and many other illustrious men 
who will long live in English history, been gauged in 
this manner, it is possible that they might have been all 
far out-distanced by some of those highly-forced exotics 
whose minds are charged with the enigmatical stores of 
their "memoria technica" and the skilful analyses of 
cunningly-collated facts and figures. 

It constantly happens that delicate youths endowed 
with a certain amount of acutcness are selected to fill 
posts in which fertility of resources and a constitution 
hardened by exposure, such as is encountered in 
school-games and field-sports, are of the first import- 
ance ; and yet the advantages which would accrue to 
the public service from such useful qualifications are 
virtually entirely overlooked. Take, for instance, such 
a case as the following, painted from life : A and B are 


rival candidates for an Indian appointment. A from his 
cradle is a bookworm, from his earliest childhood he has 
devoted his mind to examinational topics. He is the 
** paragon" of his school. The hours his companions give 
to boyish recreations he spends in solitary study ; at the 
University he imposes upon his mind the same amount 
of high pressure, and directs his whole energies to the 
acquisition of that kind of knowledge which is " likely to 
pay" — in other words, which will tell in some future 
examination. After a time, with a view of improving 
his chances of being selected to serve his country, he is 
confided to the keeping of the professional crammer; one 
in fact who has thoroughly probed the mysterious laws 
which regulate examinations, and who has made it his 
object to master the whims and the fancies of different 
Examiners ; experience has taught him what questions 
will be asked and how the replies to those questions can 
be most attractively framed — so answered, in fact, as to 
convey the impression that the candidate is the able 
exponent of a profound and well-digested stock of eru- 
dition and learning. The confiding aspirant for office 
imbibes with ready faith whatever he is told to retain, 
and dismisses from his mind all topics which are not 
likely to be brought into requisition. We will suppose 
that -^'s assiduity is crowned with success, and that the 
wished-for prize becomes the reward of his labours- 
B^ another competitor for the same posty is a man of very 
different stamp. His training has been conducted after 
another fashion. From his boyhood he has excelled in 
all manly English sports and games; whenever there 
was a scrimmage at football he might be seen in the 
thick of tlie fray. However hard a ball might be cut at 
cricket he could be relied upon to field it *' clean/' If he 
rowed he would be a "game oar>" if he hunted he woulA 


be a " first flight man ;" and if benighted on a mountain 
expedition he would sleep as soundly under the open 
sky as in his own bed, while his presence of mind and 
cheerfulness would never forsake him. Though not so 
accomplished a bookworm as A yet he would be found 
to possess a far greater fund of useful information, and 
his physical vigour is a sufficient guarantee that his 
"work is all in him;" and that his capacity for labour, both 
mental and bodily, is likely to be very great. No one 
who knows anything of the requirements of a soldier on 
active service, or of the qualifications needed for winning 
the confidence of the dwellers in our colonies, would 
deny that although in what examiners style "marks" 
(those most deceptive criteria of comparative capacity) 
A may surpass B ; still, in any real emergency the latter 
would prove an infinitely more reliable commander or 
guide, his stronger stamina enabling him under the most 
trying circumstances to, retain his self-possession. 

If anyone is disposed to look upon this picture as 
fanciful and overdrawn, let him direct his attention to 
some of the great public schools in this country ; he will 
find among the masters men distinguished solely for 
their scholastic attainments; and he will also find others, 
who, not content with obtaining high classical honours, 
have shewed their prowess on other fields ; have rowed 
in " the Eight " and played in " the Eleven/* Such men 
seem peculiarly fitted to win the respect and command 
the affections of the youthful mind. They have learnt by 
experience that judicious sympathy with the sports and 
pastimes of the young is the surest method of awakening 
in them a spirit of loyal devotion and generous enthu- 
siasm. These remarks apply with equal force to the 
relations which exist between the officers and soldiers 
of the British army. Where the former are known to 


excel in feats of activity, strength and daring, their men 
instinctively look up to them with unswerving confidence 
and trust. 

Since the University Boat-Race became a great na* 
tional institution, since it annually attracted to the banks 
of the Thames the pent-up citizens of the great metro- 
polis, attacks from various quarters have been directed 
more or less against all who participate in the struggle. 
The charges levelled against the Oarsmen, though pos- 
sibly intended only as sportive sallies, really contain 
very grave insinuations, and display, on the part of those 
from whom they proceed, strange ignorance of the tone 
and spirit which distinguish the better Colleges at the 
old Universities. In these delineations of aquatic cha- 
racter, it is usual to represent a sort of hybrid University 
monstrosity affiliated either to "Camford" or "Oxbridge ;" 
terms applied with reversible facility, as though in their 
moral attributes there was but little to choose between 
the two. The culprits who seem more particularly to 
exasperate some of the popular writers of the day are 
the " Stroke Oars." Why no. 8 should be looked upon 
as the concentrated incarnation of that moral debase- 
ment which the prosecution of athleticism is believed 
to engender, it is no easy task to understand. It is 
however on their devoted heads that the quill-wielding 
gladiators of the sensational and dramatic arena hurl 
the darts of their keenest satire. These dissolute Strokes 
have been branded as men given to eccentric formulas 
of swearing, " invoking thunder and lightning, explosion 
and blood ; drinking beer with impunity, and taking cold 
shower-baths all the year round," and associating pub- 
licly with the frail and the fair. One of these ideal heroes 
of the oar is described as having allowed his mental 
faculties to become so utterly blunted by dissipation 


and drink that he found it necessary to summon a *' re-^ 
tired prize-fighter" with a view of " clearing his mind by 
a pugilistic encounter." The remedy proved strangely 
Successful ; for as the blows fell fast and thick upon the 
skull, thickened by beer and hardened by shower-baths, 
so did the flagging energies of his soul revive within 
him, while the embers of intelligence still smouldering 
in his brain were roused to active life. 

I am somewhat at a loss to discover the original 
of such highly-coloured portraits ; as from personal ac- 
quaintance with a considerable number of University 
Stroke Oars and from the letters with which the remainder 
have favoured me (extracts from which will be found 
among the following pages), I am satisfied that they are 
men of a very different stamp to the rowdy reprobates 
of fiction. I do not deny that even at the best Colleges 
excesses are at times committed which it is impossible 
to justify ; still these irregular frolics rather spring from 
a spirit of thoughtless exuberance than from a "bar- 
barous hardness" either of the heart or of the head. 

I shall now proceed to offer some suggestions re- 
garding the sort of men who are likely to derive benefit 
from a course of severe training, and those, on the 
other hand, who are unsuited to undergo such trying 

Let us first take the case of one who may be desigr 
nated "the nervous man," who has all his life been 
accustomed to think about himself and his imaginary 
ailments, who wearies his friends by constantly dwelling 
on his peculiar sensations, describing his symptoms in 
scientific terms, who delights in prying into medical 
works and periodicals, and is under the impression that 
he thoroughly understands his internal economy. He 
is annoyed with his relations and acquaintances for not 


manifesting a more lively interest in his hygienic wellr 
being. On all matters relating to diet he is a great 
authority, prosily dilating on things wholesome and 
unwholesome, digestible and indigestible, things to be 
taken and things better avoided. On such a man, who 
rarely exhibits any outward manifestation of his inward 
disturbance, the rowing fraternity are accustomed to cast 
expectant eyes when he comes up as a freshman. They 
encourage him to row; and his perseverance will often 
be rewarded by a place in the College Boat. All per- 
haps goes on cheerily until the commencement of the 
so called training for the Spring Races. Thereupon he 
suddenly and completely changes both his habits and 
his mode of living, often eating far more animal food 
than he is able to digest; these dietetic excesses at last 
bring things to a crisis. After a hard row he returns to 
his College in the evening and partakes of an unusually 
substantial meal, consisting of beefsteaks, mutton-chops, 
eggs and beer, all consumed immediately before retiring 
to rest. It is not surprising that such a repast should 
be followed by somewhat unquiet slumbers, accompanied 
by more or less palpitation and discomfort. These 
symptoms naturally excite alarm ; he feels his pulse, 
his doubts on the subject of palpitation are at once 
removed, and his agitation increased. Indeed, to his 
fevered imagination it now seems as though separate 
hearts were beating in every part of his frame ; he rests 
his anxious head on his pillow, he hears a loud throbbing 
in his head, he turns on his side, but his angry heart 
"knocks at his ribs." In his trepidation he recalls to 
mind all he has heard of the baneful effects of Boat- 
Racing: the shoals of young men who by such "folly" 
have ruined their constitutions and irretrievably blighted 
their future prospects. Agitated by these and similar 


fears, he passes an anxious and feverish night, unre- 
freshed by soothing slumbers. At early dawn he hastens 
to consult a doctor. Cases such as these are somewhat 
puzzling even to the most skilful adviser; the patient is 
often so excited that the moment the stethoscope is 
applied to his chest the whole circulation appears to 
run riot. Moreover such a man is frequently so well 
versed in the usual symptoms of cardiac affection that 
he fancies he is suffering in his own person from that 
malady the perils of which he has so carefully studied. 
Hence it is necessary to accept what is stated with con- 
siderable reservation. Such an interview between iEscu- 
lapius and his well-priitied invalid usually results in the 
latter being assured that there is nothing seriously wrong 
about the heart, though that organ is in an excitable 
and over-irritated state ; hence in th^ taking of exercise 
moderation should be practised. The interesting sub- 
ject of medical scrutiny returns to his College some- 
what relieved, though still thoroughly frightened, and in 
his anxiety to obtain the sympathy of his friends, he 
assures them that his state is precarious, and that it 
will be necessary for him to bestow great care on his 
health for a very long time, prudence demanding that 
rowing and all violent exercise should be entirely aban- 
doned. A physical collapse at so an early an age is 
well calculated to awake the commiseration and the 
pity of his comrades, who affectionately style the 
damaged athlete, "the man with the heart." Now it 
has always appeared to me that many of these so-called 
men with hearts are adopting the most efficient mode of 
becoming legitimately entitled to this lugubrious sobri- 
quet by the sort of life they are leading. Many of 
them eat and drink an immoderately large allowance of 
stimulating food. They pile on fuel enough to support 




^« ^ ^ ■ <p — ^ * ■ — ■ •- — — 

the physical engine during a hard day's work, whildthey 
limit the calls made on the activity latent within them, 
to sauntering delicately in their favourite loynges. In 
my own college there were in my time several of these 
" heart" afflicted undergraduates. I have followed their 
after careers with some interest, and so far as my en- 
quiries regarding their health extend, they are as well 
now as ever they were ; and probably had their valetu- 
dinarian proclivities been less operative, their existence 
would have been more healthy and more happy. Cer- 
tainly nothing exerts a more sedative influence on the 
over excitable nervous system than hard exercise ; and 
I am acquainted with no better way of dispelling the 
blues, or of quieting the gloomy forebodings of the 
fretful hypochondriac, than a hard row, a good gallop, 
or a long walk across country. In this manner the 
nervous energy which is running riot will be directed 
into a healthy and natural channel, expending its force 
on the contraction of muscle, the removal of effete 
tissue, and the general purification of the blood ; and 
inasmuch as the heart is forced to bear a prominent 
part in these renovating processes, that organ will thus 
be more profitably and usefully employed than in min- 
istering to the caprice of a disordered fancy. I have 
known instances where young men have given up 
rowing, and all forms of violent exercise, from fears 
regarding their hearts, whose hearts and whose whole 
habit of body would have been greatly benefited by 
a judicious course of physical training. I do not say 
such severe work as the university Boat-Race is in all 
cases desirable ; but assuredly a daily row for a couple 
of hours would prove more conducive to after-health 
than calming a refractory heart with a novel and a pipe. 
In a preceding portion of these pages, in speaking of 
U. O. 7 


the casualties which have been ascribed to the Boat- 
Race, I have shewn that the disease popularly known 
as decline or consumption has, in the opinion of many, 
exacted a heavy tribute from among the ranks of Oars- 
men, and is said to have proved peculiarly fatal to them. 
I propose therefore to consider somewhat in detail what 
signification should be attached to this word consump- 
tion. By so doing I believe I shall best succeed in 
demonstrating what men are constitutionally unfitted to 
engage in a hard Boat-Race, and likewise the particular 
occasions on which even strong Oarsmen should entirely 
avoid every variety of active exertion. Such an in- 
vestigation may serve a useful purpose by indicating the 
class of men from among whom an " Eight" may be 
selected, and also those who should be excluded from 
competing on the ground of physical disability. 

In this country the opinions entertained by Laennec 
and Louis regarding the nature of consumption have 
been very generally accepted ; the vast majority of cases' 
classed under this heading being considered due to 
certain deposits or growths in the lungs to which the 
term tubercles has been applied. Hence, till compara- 
tively lately, English writers have been accustomed to 
recognize but one form of consumption, namely, the 
tubercular; a constitutional disorder, accompanied by 
various symptoms of failing health, in which after a 
longer or shorter interval these tubercles (small nodules 
no larger than millet seeds) appear in the lungs, some- 
times collected together in masses, and in other cases 
scattered through the different pulmonary structures. 
Though these views have of late been somewhat modi- 
fied, still the word consumption has amongst us been 
held to include diseases which would appear to be 
wholly distinct from tubercular disorders, both in their 


origin and nature, and which in their early stages at 
all events require an altogether opposite line of treat- 

So long as consumption and tubercle were consi- 
dered synonymous, and tubercles looked upon as some- 
thing inherited, it was not surprising that many per- 
sons should have been considered consumptive from 
their birth, and expressions like the following, "the 
seeds of consumption were always in him," seemed war- 
ranted by the aetiology of the disease. Such ill-starred 
mortals would then, in accordance with some definite 
though mysterious law of pathological evolution, be pre- 
destined to an early death, and although, as a conse- 
quence of over-exertion, or some other form of physical 
excess, that event might perhaps be hastened, still their 
untimely decease would merely be the antedating of an 
inevitable sentence. Although these doctrines regard- 
ing the nature of consumption were till recently consi- 
dered strictly orthodox, and are indeed still held by men 
whose opinions are entitled to great weight, I confess 
that for my part I am unable to subscribe to them, and 
(what is of far more importance) not only has their accu- 
racy been questioned by some of the most distinguished 
authorities on the continent (more especially by Pro- 
fessors Virchow and Niemeyer in Germany), but the very 
foundations on which such doctrines rest, have, through 
the critical investigations of these able pathologists, been 
totally undermined. Their experience has convinced 
them, that although doubtless a certain proportion of the 
cases termed consumption are to be ascribed to the pre- 
sence of tubercle in the lungs, nevertheless these in- 
stances of the affection are by no means so numerous as 
others in which the disorder arises from wholly different 
causes. As therefore consumption is found to vary in 



its mode of origin, so will the forms it assumes be sepa- 
rate and distinct. 

Of these forms, by far the most important is that 
which has been termed " chronic catarrhal pneumonia," 
when in fact the disease is induced by a low type of 
inflammation, characterized rather by the smouldering 
duration of its course, than by symptoms which are 
sthenic or acute. Thus, for example, a man catches- 
a severe cold, accompanied by more or less difficulty of 
breathing, by tightness and oppression. It is not thrown 
off* like ordinary attacks; he is however not sufficiently 
unwell to give up work altogether, and therefore, though 
not without discomfort, he perseveres in discharging 
his daily round of duty: time wears on, and his health, 
instead of improving, continues to fail ; his appetite 
grows fickle ; he loses flesh ; he becomes feverish, espe- 
cially towards evening, and he can no longer take ex- 
ercise without feeling very breathless. At length his 
friends persuade him to seek advice. To the experi- 
enced eye his state is painfully apparent ; a portion of 
the lung is to all intents and purposes useless; certain 
products of inflammation have been exuded into the de- 
licate pulmonary system, choking up and obliterating 
those cells into which the air should find free access. This 
inflammatory infiltration is at first given off" in a liquid 
form ; but after a time certain portions of the exudation 
are reabsorbed, while other parts, incapable of liquefac- 
tion, remain in the lungs in the form of a chalky or cheesy 
mass. The presence of such a foreign body necessarily 
interferes with the healthy action of organs whose func- 
tions are constantly called into activity; and hence, when- 
ever a fresh cold is contracted, mischief at the old spot, 
in the shape of a fresh attack of inflammation, is again 
lighted up. This then is one of those forms of consump- 

— — . - /■ . 


tion which, though generally associated with tubercle, are 
in reality to be attributed to wholly different causes. It 
is simply consumption following upon a neglected cold. 
The disease in fact may pass through all its stages, and 
the patient may die with a cavity in his lungs, not only 
without there being any hereditary predisposition to 
decline, but without the presence of a single tubercle. 
From over-anxiety or from over-work the patient may be 
below par, or possibly he has but lately recovered from 
some enfeebling disorder: from these or similar causes 
of enervation, his blood is impoverished, and conse- 
quently, as has been aptly remarked by an able conti- 
nental pathologist, " the products of inflammation exist, 
at least in part, pre-formed m, the blood ;" in other words, 
the character of an inflammatory attack usually de- 
pends on the quality of the blood, and men in broken- 
down heal til suffer from those asthenic forms of disease 
which are so often the precursors of the most common 
varieties of pulmonary consumption. A man in the full 
vigour of robust health is invalided by inflammation of 
a different kind : if his lungs are attacked, he is speed- 
ily prostrated, for a few days his distress is intensely 
acute, but the crisis is not distant. If he die, his illness 
is a short one, if he recover (as is usually the case) his 
convalescence will be rapid and complete. Though his 
air-cells may have been more extensively blocked up 
than is usually the case in catarrhal pneumonia, and 
Ijhough at first the exudation which invades the lung is 
more glutinous and adhesive — still in a comparatively 
short time, under favourable conditions, the intruding 
mass is liquefied and completely reabsorbed. Hence 
in the one case, the disease, though critical at the time, 
speedily runs its course, and if not fatal leaves no baneful 
traces of its presence; in the other, though the attack 


may be regarded as trivial at the outset, it is often only 
the gloomy herald of impending decay. 

There are other forms of consumption hitherto looked 
upon as tubercular, for the true interpretation of which 
we are also indebted to the industry of German phy- 
sicians. They are usually met with among a class of 
persons who are deficient in physical vigour; such in- 
dividuals may be recognized by their transparent skin, 
by the pearly whiteness of their eyes, by their delicate 
teeth — by their long bones, sparingly covered by thin 
layers of muscle, by their narrow and flattened chests, 
by the beaded extremities of their ribs. In early life 
though growth may be rapid, there is no corresponding 
development; they are subject to headaches, they readily 
take cold, and experience periodical attacks of bleeding 
at the nose. Young persons of this habit, without any 
warning or special exertion, often undergo sudden and 
alarming symptoms of bronchial haemorrhage — in popular 
terms, they are said to have ruptured a blood-vessel. 
This accident, which is frequently followed by copious 
bleeding, is probably to be ascribed partly to an un- 
healthy state of the blood, and partly also to some 
inherent delicacy of the coats of the pulmonary vessels. 
Now although cases of this description have been set 
down to the presence of tubercle, which either by ob- 
structing the circulation, or by inducing ulceration, so 
weakens the capillaries of the lungs as to allow the 
partial escape of their contents, yet clinical observation 
would appear to shew that this tubercular theory is m 
many instances untenable ; the bleeding often occurring 
without its being possible to discover any signs of the 
presence of tubercle. A portion of the effused blood is 
ejected, giving rise to haemoptysis, while the remainder 
gravitates into the lung tissue, obliterating its cells. In 


this situation it is either reabsorbed, or left as an indo- 
lent mass, setting up irritation, and often by its pre- 
sence inducing some low form of inflammation within 
and around this substance ; certain changes occur im- 
parting to it that cheese-like appearance, which although 
in the opinion of many inseparably associated with the 
presence of tubercle, is simply the result of bronchial 

But there are cases of consumption essentially differ- 
ent to the two forms I have hitherto considered, in which 
the affection may with peculiar propriety be termed 
constitutional — its early symptoms seeming rather to 
attack the general system than the respiratory organs. 
The disease here is characterized by a failing of the 
general health, and frequently comes on so gradually, 
and with such insidious steps, that its invasion is well- 
nigh unperceived even by the nearest relatives. Yet 
weight is lost, the appetite grows capricious, every 
variety of fatty food becomes distasteful, the hair falls 
off, or, strange to say, becomes over luxuriant, and often 
towards evening there is a parched feeling about the 
skin, a pungent sense of heat being communicated to 
the touch. In such instances consumption may perhaps 
be suspected and the lungs may be carefully tested ; 
but though sirch an examination be conducted with the 
utmost skill, by those who have made such investiga- 
tions their special study, it often happens that the 
results are purely negative ; the chest movements may be 
somewhat less regular and more jerky than is usual, yet 
there is nothing in the respiration which can be looked 
upon as abnormal. The most striking feature in con- 
nexion with the cases I am now describing is the shrink- 
ing, and wasting of the different tissues. In fact the 
word consumption properly expresses those morbid 


phenomena which characterize the disease. In every 
region of the body the muscles grow spare, the subcuta- 
neous fat gradually disappears, innumerable vessels, no 
longer needed, shrink and become impervious, while the 
larger arteries contract, causing in the pulse a thin and 
thready feeling. Lessened volumes of blood are passed 
into the lungs, where the pulmonary vessels adapting 
their channels to the more scanty streams by which 
they are traversed, participate in the general decay of 
the system. Coincidently with these symptoms of de- 
cline we observe that sinking of the chest, that falling 
in of the ribs, that projection of the collar-bones, that 
angular protrusion of the shoulder-blades so typical of 
pulmonary disease. 

It will readily be admitted that such cases as these 
are, in their nature and symptoms, altogether different 
from those other forms of the disorder to which I have 
already referred. They do not commence with a cold 
on the chest; in many cases they pursue their fatal course 
without the occurrence of any haemorrhage. Modem' 
researches have thrown considerable light on many points 
connected with this form of consumption, which until 
comparatively lately were misunderstood; these investi- 
gations go to prove that in its early stages consumption 
is not so much a disorder of the lungs as of the blood, 
that " liquid flesh " from which all structures and tissues 
derive their nutriment and support. When therefore 
consumption threatens, the first and most important 
changes must be sought for in the blood, which becomes 
impoverished and is altered in its composition, not so 
much by the introduction of new and unusual constituents, 
as by the alteration in the relative proportions of its 
ormal ingredients. When, for example, the quantity 
' albumen in the blood is increased by one-fourth, and 


when, at the same time, the red corpuscles are reduced to 
half their usual amount, it cannot excite surprise that 
the whole system should become " demoralized " by the 
change, and that all the organs and structures should be 
injuriously affected; the temperature of the body rises, 
feverish symptoms supervene, the tissues are used up too 
rapidly. The altered blood, no longer ministering to 
healthy nutrition, becomes instead a source of irritation, 
destructive changes being carried on more energetically 
than those which are constructive. Nor is this process 
confined to the blood alone and the parts nourished by 
it, there are grounds for believing that it extends like- 
wise to the channels through which the life-stream flows, 
subjecting them to morbid and degenerative change. In 
this manner after a time these vessels may altogether dis- 
appear. ' If then we look upon consumption as due to 
some inherent defect in the nutritive processes, to some 
scrofulous form of indigestion, whereby an impoverished 
and albuminous state of the blood is induced, we can 
readily understand the consequent exudation of tu- 
bercle, a substance largely composed of coagulated 

If then this form of consumption be termed "sys- 
temic" as commencing in the general system, the lung 
complication being only secondary, and the two varieties 
before discussed are styled " pulmonary," as originating 
in the lungs, we shall be better able to understand how 
far a predisposition to any one of these diseases is likely 
to be influenced by violent exercise. We shall further 
see that from some ailments, popularly considered 
trivial, grave consequences may frequently supervene, 
and that on the first discovery of such symptoms Boat- 
Racing and other forms of athleticism must be at once 


For example, a man may suffer from a cold on his 
chest, accompanied by a sense of oppression and diffi- 
culty of breathing. He is more or less feverish, and ex- 
periences a general feeling of weariness and malaise, the 
temperature being* at the same time unusually high. 
Such a cold should be looked upon as sufficiently serious 
to exclude even the strongest man from his place in the 
boat; a week's rest will often restore that Oarsman to 
perfect health, who, had he persevered in rowing, might 
have permanently injured his constitution. 

The great internal organs, so important are the ser- 
vices which they render to the economy, when attacked 
by disease can never enjoy complete repose ; if therefore 
they become invalided they should be permitted to per- 
form their inevitable task in the most leisurely manner, 
and carefully guarded from any unnecessary strain : 
when the play of the lungs is exalted by violent labour, 
the quantity of air which passes through their tubes is 
immensely increased ; respiration not only becoming 
deeper, but also far more rapid. Hence at such a time 
by violent exercise a slight bronchial affection may 
readily be fanned into a severe attack of inflammation. 
It will be remembered that several of my correspondents 
attribute the commencement of somewhat serious indis- 
position to their having pulled at a time when they were 
suffering from a cold. Rowing-men should never forget 
that a cold on the chest if neglected may be followed 
by all the fatal symptoms of pulmonary consumption. 
And it should be further noted, that those in a some- 
what low state of health, in training phraseology " stale," 
are more liable to fall victims to such attacks than others 
who are thoroughly robust. Men also who 5re consti- 
tutionally weak, the delicately-fibred youths I have de- 
scribed, should exercise great caution in all that relates 


to their physical training, wholly avoiding those competi- 
tive contests, which are invariably accompanied by more 
or less mental and bodily excitement. 

The health of such a man may be vastly improved 
by moderate exercise, but he should not be subjected to 
a severe course of training; he does not possess the sta- 
mina upon which all training must be based ; the spare 
outline of his meagre frame clearly indicates that any 
attempt at reducing measures would be attended with 
risk; his supply of flesh is too scanty to bear taking 
down, and there is no redundance of fat-containing ele- 
ments in his system. Besides, men of this type do occa- 
sionally suffer from the rupture of a blood-vessel in the 
lungs ; not because those organs are the seat of tubercle, 
but by reason of what has been termed their hsemor- 
rhagic diathesis. In cases also where there is any here- 
ditary predisposition to this form of delicacy, symptoms 
of which have manifested themselves in blood-relations, 
every variety of athletic excess must be wholly avoided. 
On the other hand, when there is merely some undefined 
threatening of "systemic consumption," although the 
strain of a Boat-Race is not unattended with danger, still 
muscular activity sufficiently energetic to expand the 
chest is likely to prove of the utmost advantage. These 
remarks, if correct, are calculated to lessen that burden 
of anxiety necessarily borne by those who in maintain- 
ing that "the seeds of consumption were always in a 
man" seem disposed to believe that the germinal acti- 
vity of those seeds is fatally hastened by indulgence in 
rowing and other muscular exertions. Were this theory 
true, then the harder and the longer a man pulls, the 
more rapidly will he burn down his scanty allowance of 
life; each stroke of his oar being a nail hammered into 
his own coffin. On the other hand, if, in the incipient 


Stages of systemic consumption, certain dyspeptic symp- 
toms are the sole precursors of an impoverished state of 
the blood, it would be reasonable to assume that no 
procedure would be more likely to re-establish health, 
to cure alimentary derangements, and to nip consump- 
tion in the bud, than a course of judiciously regulated 

I have already shewn in what way exercise pro- 
duces such beneficial results, how it develops muscle, 
improving the quality and increasing the quantity of 
the blood, and how when the streams of blood become 
more copious the lungs are recruited by the change. 
Hence whenever temperature is persistently high, when 
weight is lost, when the appetite grows dainty and fickle, 
and fatty food is distasteful, these suggestive warnings 
should sound the first note of alarm. An attempt 
should then be made to arouse the lagging powers 
of the system by requiring a certain amount of forci- 
ble contraction from the muscles, and in no way can 
this end be better attained than by the health-imparting 
labour of rowing. Of course a case may be so far ad- 
vanced as to render such a mode of treatment inadmis- 
sible, but where we have only to deal with premonitory 
symptoms, exercise will restore the failing appetite, 
will induce refreshing sleep, will bring back muscle, and 
even cause the ribs which were beginning to recede to 
assume their natural convexity and freedom of move- 
rtient. Although I would not imply that such cases are 
proper subjects for a hard Boat-Race, still I have known 
instances in which by a judicious course of gymnastic 
training and rowing, health has been so completely re- 
established that even the trying ordeal of a Boat-Race 
has been afterwards undertaken without being followed 
by injurious results. 


Having thus spoken somewhat in detail on the sub- 
ject of lung diseases, I would now allude briefly to some 
of the dangers to which the heart is exposed. Here, as 
in the case of the lungs, perilous consequences may be 
apprehended either on the score of constitutional weak- 
ness, or because tasks of too severe a nature are exacted 
from its muscles when they are weakened and relaxed. 
The heart and indeed the whole circulatory system will 
accomplish successfully very trying work, provided that 
-their powers be not prematurely forced. After a de- 
bilitating illness or some lowering form of medical treat- 
ment, such for example as a course of mercury, the 
fibres of the heart will long remain enfeebled and un- 
strung, while the vascular system, less able to sustain 
the pressure of its contents, will occasionally yield to 
some unwonted strain. At such a time an aneurism 
may be induced ; or cardiac dilatation ensue ; or a less 
serious though disagreeable accident may supervene in 
the shape of a varicose condition of the veins. He who 
is emulous of athletic renown, even when blessed with 
the strongest of constitutions, should always remember 
that after a severe illness the muscles of the heart must 
be used with tenderness and consideration. 

Having thus indicated the circumstances under which 
even a strong heart may for a time become weak, I would 
now, in a few words, touch upon the subject of hereditary 
disease. When, for example, a father or mother has died 
at an early age from some form of cardiac affection, pru- 
dence would forbid the offspring of such parents to test 
their hearts too severely. I am disposed to believe that 
in cases where there is a tendency to hereditary disease 
of the heart, the danger of antedating disastrous results 
by indulgence in violent exercise, is much greater than in 
those instances where the latent disorder to be feared is 


congenital consumption ; those also in whom there is a 
predisposition to acute rheumatism, and who in early life 
have experienced an attack of rheumatic fever, should 
never enter a racing Eight. Exposure at all seasons of the 
year, and the chance of a ducking when the floods are 
out, are in these and similar cases much too perilous 
pastimes to be undertaken with impunity. 

Those who have the selection of the Oars for a Univer- 
sity Boat-Race should bear in mind that too much im- 
portance should not be attached to height alone ; weight 
and circumference of chest should always be taken into 
account at the same time. Even the oldest men who row 
at Putney have scarcely arrived at maturity. As a rule 
it will be found that wherever vital energy is largely 
expended on growth, complete development is some-, 
what retarded. Hence, when a young man of 20 is 
upwards of six feet in height, there is a certain risk of 
his being somewhat loosely put together; for where 
growth is unnaturally rapid, there we often find that the 
tissues are not so completely set as when it proceeds 
after a more leisurely fashion. It would appear indeed 
that although the materials of which the bodily frame 
is composed, are frequently stretched so as to extend to 
several inches above six feet, still under such circum- 
stances we can scarcely expect the same amount of 
tenacity and strength. 

The question then which naturally suggests itself is 
this : What manner of man is likely to possess a maxi- 
mum amount of strength and endurance ? In the British 
army experience has proved that soldiers whose height 
ranges from S feet 7 to S feet 9 are, on the whole, those 
best qualified to stand the privations and fatigues inci- 
dental to a hard campaign. Privates, however, are 
usually recruited from among classes of the population 


who from their earliest years are compelled to earn their 
livelihood by the labour of their hands ; and though in 
such persons the frame is usually well developed, and 
the chest wide and deep, still their laborious occupa- 
tions tend somewhat to check upward growth ; hence, 
on an average, they are not so tall as youths who are 
more delicately nurtured, such as the members of the 
two Universities. From enquiries I have made regarding 
the height and weight of some of the old Oars, as well 
as from observations on others in the same rank of life, 
who from their physique seemed peculiarly fitted to 
stand a severe course of training, I have come to the 
conclusion, that for Universitymen at the age of 20, 
5 feet 10 may be looked upon as the perfection of 
height, while the weight proportioned to that height 
will probably be about 12 stone. For every additional 
inch in height we should require about 6 or 7 lbs. in 
weight, if strength is to be commensurate; while for 
every inch below 5 feet 10, some 5 or 6 lbs. less of 
weight will fairly represent what the bulk should be. 
If the weight exceed this limit by many pounds, such 
excess is probably due to the presence of abnormal fat. 
I have in the Appendix given a Table which may as- 
sist the trainer in the selection of his men. It is con- 
densed from one compiled by Dr Chambers for his Gul- 
stonian Lectures, and shews the average weight of 2650 
healthy men between five and six feet in height, while 
at the same time the figures given in three parallel 
columns convey some idea of the degrees of develop- 
ment attainable by the perfect human form. Here may 
be seen the estimated height and weight of some of the 
most celebrated ancient statues (which we have every 
reason to believe were modelled from the life), such as 
the " Dying Gladiator," the " Theseus," and the bronze 


** Hercules " in the British Museum. By immersing in a 
bath accurate copies of these well-known works of art, 
and ascertaining the quantity of water displaced, Mr 
Brent succeeded in shewing what would be the weight 
of a man similarly proportioned. From the information 
here supplied, it would appear that a "Dying Gladiator" 
would in the flesh have weighed 12 stone 11, his height 
being 5 foot 10 ; the " Theseus " and the " Hercules " 
both also measuring 5 foot 10, weighing respectively 
13 stone II and 15 stone 12. Men as muscular as these 
models of the sculptor are occasionally met with in the 
present day. Dr Chambers remarks that the greatest 
muscular development without obesity which he had 
been able to discover, is in the instance of Parkins, the 
famous Cornish wrestler, whose ordinary weight in his 
clothes was 16 stone 11 lbs., his height being six feet. 
Spring and Jackson, two champions of the prize ring, 
were both 5 feet 1 1 in height ; the former weighing 
13 stone 3, and the latter 14 stone. The value of the 
table is lessened by the fact that all reference to age is 

If really valuable results are to be deduced from 
tables of height and weight, it is of the first importance 
that the period of life when the observations are taken 
be carefully noted. I should be disposed to fix upon 
25 as the age at which the human frame and its tissues 
reach their acme of development. It may be laid down 
as a rule subject to very few exceptions, that after this 
age increase of weight does not represent additional 
power, but indicates rather the growing accumulation of 
a useless and unprofitable burden. When therefore we 
hear of a man who at 20 years of age weighed 12 stone, 
and in after life inclining to corpulency has reached the 
abnormal weight of 17 or 18 stone, we must not con- 


sider him proportionately stronger ; on the contrary he 
should rather excite our pity and commiseration — the 
five or six stone distributed over his body being com- 
posed wholly of adipose tissue. He is thus as com- 
pletely enveloped in blubber as though he were a whale 
or a seal. His muscles being heavily weighted, his 
powers of locomotion are necessarily limited ; and, handi- 
capped in this manner, it is no easy task for him to drag 
his unwieldy frame on some sweltering I2th of August 
over the trying inequalities of a Highland Moor. 

From the rules I have here endeavoured to lay down, 
it will be tolerably easy for a muscular man to decide 
whether in his own case height and weight are approxi- 
mately balanced ; where weight is excessive, we may 
reasonably assume that it is due to superfluous fat. 
Among young men from 19 to 23, more especially if 
their early years have been spent in active pursuits, we 
rarely find any marked tendency to obesity. Those, 
however, who are unusually stout, should be rejected by 
the Captain of an Eight. This rule should more es- 
pecially be attended to when fat is not merely deposited 
generally through the sub-cutaneous tissues, but is col- 
lected around the omentum, giving rise to that unseemly 
protuberance occasionally witnessed even in the young. 
Such men, though apparently robust, rarely repay the 
labours of the trainer. Others, whose exclusion I would 
counsel, are those loose-fibred men whose muscles 
always feel soft and unstrung, who may be designated 
as flabby. In them we often find a general want 
of tone about the whole system, the veins especially 
being relaxed and unduly dilated ; there is also a want 
of power about the heart, which is apt to perform its 
functions in a somewhat irregular and slovenly man- 
ner, as may be inferred from the unnatural rapidity of 
U. O. 8 


Its contractions when some exertion is made, or even 
when a standing posture is assumed. It is important 
also that attention be directed to the conformation of 
the chest — ^width being a less trustworthy indication of 
power than depth. Indeed, broad shoulders are some- 
times deceptive, conveying the idea of more constitu- 
tional vigour than is really available. I have seen 
very wide chests in which there was comparatively 
scanty lung accommodation. I am also disposed to 
believe that the comparative force with which the air 
can be expelled from the lungs, may, when better un- 
derstood, furnish valuable indications of thoracic power. 
Some years ago I myself designed a small instrument 
for measuring the force of the wind, and persuaded a 
considerable number of my friends to test the strength 
of their lungs by blowing forcibly against the face of the 
gauge. I invariably found that the strongest and most 
active men could eject the air with the greatest force. 
I cannot help thinking that the expiratory force thus 
measured will be found a better index of lung vigour than 
that afforded by any spirometer. This question, however, 
demands further investigation. I have before alluded to 
the valuable information which the thermometer affords 
regarding important constitutional changes. A small 
instrument specially adapted for the purpose, held for 
a few minutes under the tongue, will often indicate the 
advent of some disorder which may be lurking in the 
system, before it can be discovered by any other mode 
of examination. In this way, when the cattle plague 
was raging, an outbreak of the disease could often be 
foretold when the malady was as yet only latent, and 
the timely segregation of the affected animal could still 
be effected. In those cases also in which "systemic 
consumption " may be smouldering in the blood, a high 


reading of the thermometer will often afford the first 
warning of its insidious approach ; and where some Oars- 
man seems only to be suffering from a slight attack of 
cold, an increase of temperature should unmistakably 
lead us to enforce entire cessation from exercise. Hence, 
whenever the mercury in this useful test tube rises above 
99.5® Fahr., or falls below 97.3^ Fahr., if the increase or 
depression be persistent, the Oarsman should not be 
selected for a course, of training; in the hands of a 
scientific trainer the information afforded by the ther- 
mometer should never be neglected. 

In considering the selection of crews I would es- 
pecially insist that if the men be tall they be not taken 
too young. Several of my correspondents who appear 
to have suffered, assure me that after having grown fast, 
they over exerted themselves before they had attained a 
proportionate degree of strength. On the whole, how-^ 
ever, I am disposed to think that the instances in which 
immature youths are selected to row in the Putney 
Match, are exceedingly rare, and I cannot agree with 
those who raise an outcry s^ainst this Race on the plea 
that the competitors are not old enough to bear with 
impunity so severe a strain. The best proof that the 
Oarsmen had on the whole pretty nearly attained their 
full vigour at the time they rowed, is furnished by the 
comparatively slight variations observed in the weight of 
those men who pulled in more than one Race; taking the 
60 men who in the two Universities rowed twice ^ I find 
that in the interval between their two races (extending 
in several instances over a period of two or even three 
years), they did not gain on an average more than about 
two pounds three ounces. Again, the 14 men who rowed 
three times for their respective Universities did not, in 

^ See Tables in the Appendix. 



the time intervening between their several matches, put on 
more than three pounds ten ounces, while, during the 
whole course of their University boating career, the six 
who pulled four times added only three pounds to their 

These figures are sufficient to shew that at the time 
when the Race is undertaken, both growth and develop- 
ment are nearly completed. In boys from i6 to i8 the 
annual rate of increase in weight is very much greater, 
amounting on an average to lo or 12 lbs. a year. I 
would take this opportunity of remarking that if in addi- 
tion to the weight, the age and height of the crews were 
also specified, it would be possible to form a far more 
correct idea of the comparative physique of the rival 
Oarsmen ; such information might in after years prove 
very useful, as bearing on the question of national stature, 
and shewing the average size attained by the flower of 
our youth. The heaviest man, so far as I can discover, 
who ever rowed in the Race, informs me that he was at the 
time 14 St. 10 lbs. He was one of the 1829 Oxford crew, 
whose weights do not appear to have been recorded; 
only nine other old Oars weighed more than 13 st. 

The man who can undergo with impunity a searching 
course of training is readily known : his muscular system 
is well strung and compact, the muscles feel tight and 
hard, the chest is broad and deep, the skin clear and 
bright ; a tolerably correct idea of a man's general health 
may be gathered from the state of the skin and of the 
hair. When nutrition is healthy, there is often a clear 
mottled appearance about the cutaneous integument, 
and a soft glossy look about the hair which is very cha- 
racteristic. It has been truly remarked that a thoroughly 
robust and sound man cannot look dirty ; whether you 
meet him in the pea-soupy atmosphere of a city fog or 


calmly emerging from the limited mail on some raw 
December morning, his appearance is cleanly, and his* 
bright eye and clear complexion present a wholesome 
contrast to the motley crew of unwashed humanity who 
in a Railway Refreshment Room may be seen sleepily 
'Snatching their midnight mouthfuls. The teeth also 
should be thoroughly sound ; strong well-set teeth are 
rarely met with among men of delicate habit; at the 
same time the back of the neck should be well rounded 
and covered with muscle, no grooves being visible down 
the nape of the neck. If the upper arm be well deve- 
loped, and the outline of the biceps when contracted 
cleanly defined, the chest is sure to be capacious ; a 
large arm and full chest being well-nigh invariably 
associated together. At the same time the back should 
be straight, and strongly set upon the bones, 
the arms being well proportioned, and symmetrically 
hung from their sockets, while the dorsal regions 
are sufficiently wide to allow the shoulder-blades to 
lie on the same plane with the spine, so as not to 
encroach on the axillary region, a misplacement which 
often occasions an unsightly round back, throwing the 
arms too forward, and giving them the appearance of 
being attached to the chest. When the limbs are straight 
and the form well proportioned, good rowing is the most 
easy and natural of all exercises. Many of the most 
finished Oars that the Universities ever turned out 
never rowed a stroke in their lives before coming into 
residence. If men are endowed with the requisite 
physique they will often, after a short course of judicious 
coaching, handle their oars far more skilfully than others 
who may have spent half their lives in " rowing on the sea" 
or indulging in the eccentric vagaries which self-taught 
Oarsmen are so apt to pursue. 


I have spoken strongly of the advantageous results 
which Rowing may have upon the frame, because it is one 
of the very few popular pastimes which, while it gives 
symmetry to the form, at the same time thoroughly 
exercises the upper extremities ; and it is a remarkable 
fact, that exercise of the upper extremities has a far more' 
direct effect upon the expansion of the lungs, than any 
amount of exertion confined to the lower limbs. Hence 
sailors or blacksmiths like the historic "Harry Gow," 
men in whose daily life the muscles of the arms are 
forcibly brought into play, rarely grow tall, though 
their arms and chests often become broad and brawny in 
a marked degree. Nor should such forms of exercise be 
confined to men alone; for obvious reasons the greater 
number of games popular among the boys of our public 
schools are but little adapted to their gentler sisters; 
but no valid objection can be raised to their Rowing. 
Nothing can prove more prejudicial to the coming race 
than the manner in which the future mothers of England 
pass their time during their school-girl days. At a period 
of their lives when growth and development are peculi- 
arly active, when muscles are yearning for opportunities 
of forcible contraction, they are sent to a young ladies' 
seminary to learn accomplishments, in other words to be 
crammed with a heterogeneous jumble of literary, ethno- 
logical, scientific and musical lore: without any r^ard to 
natural aptitude, objects are forced upon the eye and 
the ear which never penetrate beyond those portals, 
unable to discover any congenial resting-place in the 
recesses of the brain. For long and weary hours, with 
hot heads, cold extremities, and aching backs, these 
modem Iphigenias, the sacrificial victims of polite educa- 
tion, plod over their irksome and unprofitable tasks» learn- 
ing much, mastering little or nothing. These lemarks 


r - I 

are not made in any disloyal spirit to the British maidens 
of the present day; but I am strongly disposed to believe 
that the sort of " finishing *' they often receive is rather 
calculated to finish them altogether than to impart tone 
and vigour to their mind. The University Boat-Race 
has been spoken of as the most conspicuous instance of 
cruelty to animals, but surely the slight discomfort occa- 
sionally experienced in that struggle is infinitesimally 
trifling when compared with the pent-up muscular energy 
which is ruthlessly smothered in the fashionable board- 
ing-school. Few spectacles are better calculated to 
awaken the compassion of a sensitive mind than the 
gangs of jaded girls who may be seen listlessly plodding 
their weary way along the less-frequented paths of some 
of those sea-side resorts where educational establish- 
ments of every description seem to batten and thrive. 
Were these scholastic damsels occasionally permitted to 
relax the tension of their minds and to indulge in some 
such " vulgar" recreation as plying an oar, their mental 
culture would probably suffer but little, while their bodily 
frames would be incalculably benefited, and parents 
and husbands in after years be spared a heavy burden 
of care and anxiety. If some of the hours which are 
dawdled over croquet were transferred to rowing, it 
would be the means of imparting grace to the form and 
vigour to the constitution. I myself have seen a boat 
propelled by the fair hands of lady rowers, whose 
strength and skill would have enabled them to hold their 
own against those adventurous youths who in 1872 had 
the hardihood to cross the Atlantic, to dispute on our 
own waters the championship of the oar. 

. Exercise in the open air is always attended with 
more beneficial results than that taken in a covered 
building however spacious and well-ventilated. When 


respiration is rapid and deep, fully three times as much 
carbonic acid is given oflf from the lungs as when it is 
conducted after a leisurely fashion^ Considering the 
incalculable benefit of rowing exercise it is a subject for 
grave regret that so many rivers, more especially in the 
north of England, have become the sole depositories of 
sewage largely blended with noxious and offensive chy- 
mical compounds. Hence the most ardent disciple of 
the oar may well be deterred from launching his bark on 
pestilential and repulsive waters, whose crusted sur- 
face is only ruffled by the busy bubbles of noisome 
gases, or the frothy refuse of the mill and. the abat- 
toir : these remarks are also applicable to some of the 
southern rivers, though not perhaps to the same extent. 
Although the Cam has of late years been deepened, 
straightened and rendered more navigable — a change 
which has doubtless contributed to the recent successes 
of the Cambridge Crews at Putney — still the river has not 
yet attained those limpid properties which its Oarsmen 
would appreciate, the stagnant water being largely adul- 
terated by the sewage of the to^n. For this reason it 
has always appeared to me that rowing on the Cam is 
by no means so invigorating and healthy a recreation as 
it is upon the Isis. During the two hours that are $pent 
on the river, we may assume that as much air passes 
through the lungs as during the seven or eight hours 
which are devoted to sleep, and when this air is loaded 
with impurities it may readily be conceived that such an 
atmosphere is likely to interfere with the labour of the 
trainer in his endeavours to get his men into first-rate 
condition. Some experiments made by the late Dr 
Barker prove conclusively that when dogs are exposed 
to the noxious gases given off by drains, even in cases in 
vhich there was no actual disease, the health of the 


animal invariably suffered, while the general tone of the 
system was greatly reduced. Inasmuch then as the 
Cambridge Crews labour under this serious disadvantage 
during their courses of training, it is incumbent on all 
who have the interest of their Alma Mater at heart 
not to rest content with the mere deepening of the river, 
but to insist that yet another step be taken in the 
right direction, and that all drains be diverted from its 

There is much in the present day which is calculated 
to impress upon the mind of all thoughtful and patriotic 
men the importance of directing more attention to the 
subject of physical education. The compulsory school- 
ing of gutter urchins may be attended with some ad- 
vantages; the youth whose unassisted instincts had never 
soared above the art of pocket-picking, may, through 
his acquaintance with the three R's, be elevated to the 
more exalted position of an accomplished swindler or 
a dexterous forger. But so long as he is herded among 
the miserable outcasts by whom the slums of our great 
cities are tenanted, there is little prospect of his moral 
tone being benefited by that mental culture which but too 
often results in the mere sharpening of his wits. The 
most satisfactory education which could be conferred on 
the inhabitants of these islands, rich and poor, weak and 
strong, from the pampered millionaire to the needy 
starveling, would be two or three years' compulsory mili- 
tary service. There are no doubt advantages in dwell- 
ing in an island and being girt around *^with a silver 
thread of sea,*' but may not these ocean bulwarks lull us 
into that false security so dreaded by the Lacedaemonians, 
that no walls were permitted to encircle the ancient city 
of Sparta — the stout arms of her sons being her sole 
defence ? If two years' seasoning in the ranks were be- 


Stowed upon youths between the ages of 19 and 21, 
barracks for their accommodation being placed as far as 
possible in hilly districts, the change for the better in 
our national physique would very soon become appa- 
rent; by some such enactment, a large portion of our 
countrymen would for the first time in their lives enjoy 
pure air and discover the use of their limbs in healthy 
exercise. They would learn discipline and be trained 
in those habits of obedience which would make them 
better citizens in after life. Such a change would no 
doubt seriously interfere with that vaunted " liberty of 
the subject " which permits beardless boys to follow the 
bent of their own inclinations, contracting early and 
improvident marriages, and impressing their own half- 
developed forms on a blighted and miserable offspring. 

I have already referred to some of the more power- 
ful influences which, in the course of the last 50 or 60 
years, have tended to deteriorate important sections of 
our population (a subject which I have elsewhere treated 
at some length). Among these causes may be noted 
the increasing immigration from the country districts 
into the towns, a process which results in too large a 
portion of our people becoming dwellers in cities, where 
the enervating conditions amid which life is spent but 
too often culminate in premature decay. I do not deny 
that the change from rural to urban life possesses strong 
attractions. Wages are high, thereby enabling the people 
to procure for themselves good and expensive food. The 
water is often excellent, and brought into their houses 
from the purest springs and lakes. But the air as a rule 
is pestilentially adulterated, poisoned from below by the 
exhalations of the drains, and from above by the murky 
products of combustion and the gaseous emanations of 
chemical and other factories. Although the advantages 


of good air are more lightly esteemed by the majority 
of men than the sweet-sinelling savour of costly viands, 
it is an undoubted fact that the atmosphere we breathe, 
the pabulum of our lungs, is a far more important 
condition of health than tempting varieties of food. 
In the north of England and in Scotland there are dis- 
tricts of the country inhabited by a singularly hardy and 
robust race of men — brawny, tight-sinewed labourers, 
who live entirely on the simple diet of oatmeal, potatoes, 
and milk. But the air they inhale is invigorating and 
pure, and when active labour causes them to open out 
the recesses of their lungs, the cavities of those organs 
are filled with something more exhilarating than reeking 
and smut-laden vapours. 

It is then impossible to doubt that many circum- 
stances in the present day combine to dry up the springs 
of our national life-blood — <:auses which, as population 
becomes more redundant, must tell with increasing effect. 
To counteract these agencies every pastime, every game, 
and every variety of exercise tending to make men mus- 
cular and healthy, is deserving of encouragement. The 
care that is bestowed in patching up the most confirmed 
invalids, the attention and medical skill expended on 
the scrofulous and consumptive, doubtless prolongs their 
lives and is in harmony with the humane sentiments of 
the 19th century. Still, in so far as the interests of the 
state are concerned, the prolongation of such lives must 
be looked upon as a national calamity ; the diseases 
these sickly persons transmit to their progeny are one of 
the most prolific causes of that low state of health 
which is the baneful inheritance of many families. By 
a curious though intelligible physiological law the 
healthiest parents are not as a rule blessed with such 
large families as those in whom there is a certain taint 


of constitutional weakness. Delicate mothers are rarely 
able to nurse their oflfspring, who consequently suc- 
ceed each other in many instances with startling ra^* 

During the last few years the whole question of na- 
tional physique has assumed new and momentous pro- 
portions. In the late continental war the most strik- 
ing point of contrast between the two combatants was 
the difference in strength between the individual soldiers 
of which the hostile armies consisted. The stamina 
of the German troops, as exhibited in the rapidity 
and length of their marches, and their endurance under 
trying exposure, contributed as much to their marvellous 
success as did the skill displayed by their generals; 
The sapless striplings of whom the French army was so 
largely composed, enervated by habits of dissipation and 
self-indulgence, strewed their accoutrements along their 
line of route, and were but ill-prepared to encounter the 
hardy men around the standard of Moltke. Although 
in the course of that war it has been computed that 
the loss sustained by the Germans amounted to nearly 
100,000 men in killed, wounded, and invalided, still 
considering that these troops belonged to an army of 
1,500,000 men, and were drawn from an empire contain- 
ing 40 millions, the drain on the vital resources of the 
state would be well-nigh inappreciable. Moreover, 
while the losses on the field of battle would no doubt 
be meted out with a tolerably even hand among the 
men who were constitutionally strong and among those 
endowed with lesser powers of endurance, still it would 
be upon the latter that the invaliding would tell with 
most disastrous effect. War, then, in its bearing on na- 
tional health, is by no means an unmitigated evil; it 
exacts a heavy penalty of blood, but the weakly are 


killed off, and those who survive usually derive great 
benefit from their enforced exposure and hardships. 

On the return of the German troops to their Father- 
land after the siege of Paris, the change in their appear- 
ance has been described by eye-witnesses as truly 
remarkable. Half-developed youths were transformed 
into bearded and robust soldiers; puny and delicate men 
hardened into vigorous health. 

Familiarity with danger produces that self-confidence 
which is an important element in true courage ; so suc- 
cessful a campaign therefore was certain to exercise a 
most marked influence on national pluck : 1,200,000 or 
'1,400,000 brave men returning triumphant to their 
homes would not only stimulate the martial spirit of the 
nation, but would leave the impress of their high psy- 
chical qualities on their descendants, fulfilling the well- 
known words of Horace, 

** Fortes creantur fortibus." 

But there is another lesson to be deduced from this war, 
one which more deeply concerns surrounding nations. 
A new principle has been introduced into modern war- 
fare. War for the future must be looked upon not only 
as conducing to national glory and renown, but also as 
the most profitable of all occupations. 

Two rich provinces and two hundred million pounds 
sterling, even after deducting the expenditure and loss 
of property, seem no mean return for a nine months' 
campaign. Centuries might have been expended on the 
carving of German toys, the compiling of Lexicons, and 
the brewing of Bavarian beer, ere so colossal a sum 
could be honestly earned. The pages of history may 
be searched in vain for an instance of legalized pillage 
on so gigantic a scale. When these piles of easily gotten 
gains are exhausted; and the national coffers once more 


failing, it is but reasonable to assume that so ready a 
method of replenishing them will not be forgotten. 

In such an hour the most tempting antagonist will 
be that nation which when defeated has the largest re- 
sources with which to remunerate her victor. If there 
be a nation which answers this description it is Great 
Britain, and if there be a town peculiarly adapted for 
"sacking" it is our own metropolis. An empire with 
ships on every sea, with possessions in every quarter of 
the globe, we must ever excite the cupidity of our neigh- 
bours. Whensoever the time of the nation's trial shall 
come, as sooner or later it needs must, arrive, a national 
collapse may convince the most sceptical that hoards of 
accumulated wealth are but a doubtful advantage unless 
our possessions be enhanced by national health. 

In the piping seasons of peace, "men with enough 
muscle to lift a dictionary, and training enough to play a 
fiddle," may be able to enjoy the freedom won for them 
by stouter hearts and stronger arms, but such citizens 
are not a type of the Anglo-Saxon Race which we 
would desire to see perpetuated ; they are not that 
tower of strength of which the Greek Poet speaks when 
he puts his trust in men as the bulwark of the state 
in war, 

&pSp€s iroKcus v6pyos ip-^Xos' 

and after a disastrous " Battle of Dorking," such feeble 
and loosely-knit protectors would be found but a sorry 
reserve to withstand the onslaught of a victorious in- 


THE first Boat-Race between Oxford and Cambridge 
took place on the afternoon of the loth of June, 
1 829, Oxford being victorious. . 

The day was exquisite and the Race consequently 
was rowed under the most favourable circumstances from 
Hambledon Lock to Henley Bridge, about two miles 
and a quarter, a distance covered easily by the winning 
crew in the space of 14 minutes 30 seconds. 

The present Bishop of St Andrews, the Right Rev. 
C. Wordsworth, D.D., was mainly instrumental in getting 
up this Race. He may therefore legitimately be looked 
upon as the *' Father of the Inter-University Match." 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


John Carter, St John's, 
y. E, Arbuthnot, Balliol\ 
J. E. Bates^ Ch. Ch. 
C. Wordsworth, Ch. Ch. 
J. J. Toogood, Balliol. 
Thomas Gamier^ Worcester. 
George B. Moore, Ch. Ch. 
Thomas Staniforth, Ch. Ch. 

Coxswain, W. R. Fremantle, Ch. Ch. 

^ Where the names are printed in italics the Oarsmen died before the 
end of the year 1869. 



A. B. E. Holdsworth, Trin. 
A. F. Bayford, Trin. Hall. 
Ch. Warren, Trin. 
C. Merivale, St John's. 
Thomas Entwisle, Trin. 
W. T. Thompson, Jesus. 
G. A. Selwyn, St John's. 
W. Snow (now Strahan), St John's. 
Coxswain, B. R. Heath, Trin. 

Life-rate of tlie Crews. 

The vitality of these sixteen Oarsmen may on the 
whole be looked upon as very satisfactory. Each man 
ought, according to life probabilities, to have survived 
the race 40 years (his age when he rowed being 20); 
twelve have realized these expectations, and were alive 
and well at the end of the year 1869. The remaining 
four, who were prematurely cut off, lived on an average 
27 years each, after the year 1829. Taking the lives of 
these sixteen men together, we find that whereas for 
ordinary men the calculated expectation of life after 
the Race would not exceed 640 years, their longevity, if 
collectively estimated, will amount to 759 years, while 
the average after-life of each individual, instead of being 
40 years, is likely to be extended to 47J years. In this 
calculation allowance is made for the prospects of after- 
life of the twelve men still surviving in the year 1869. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

8 7 I 


Extracts from t/te letters of the surviving members of 

the Oxford Crew. 

" I rowed in the first race between Oxford and Cam- 
bridge at Henley in 1829, and in the year 1831 I rowed 
over the same course in a match between Oxford and 
the Leander (London Club); on both occasions the 
crews underwent a course of training, and my opinion, 
formed from these matches and from four years of 
College racing, is, that if a young man commences his 
boat-racing career with a sound constitution, and is of 
temperate habits, that constitution will be strengthened 
rather than injured. I myself was so passionately fond 
of rowing that I was constantly on the water, winter 
and summer, indeed there were very few days when in 
residence, weather permitting, that I was not in a rowing 
boat, and not unfrequently rowing hard either against 
some other boat or against time. 

" I have never thought that the exertion in the racing- 
boat ever injured me. Within four years I rowed from 
Oxford to London 5 times, 3 times in a four-oared and 
twice in a two-oared with a steerer. On one of these 
occasions my comrade was an Oxford waterman, with a 
College friend steering us. We started from Oxford at 
4 A.M., and arrived at Windsor at 7.30. P.M. It was in 
the week before Christmas, in the year, I think, 1828. 
From this, though it was a hard day's work, no injurious 
effect followed. * * ♦ * Given a judicious diet and 
regular practice, not too violent at first either as to 
frequency or pace, I cannot believe any injury will 
result to the constitution. I am not aware that any of 
my own contemporaries have suffered any ill effects 
from rowing. 

"My brother rowed in 1836 against Cambridge, from 
U. O. 9 


Westminster to Putney, and I never heard him attribute 
any ill effects to rowing. 

*'JoHN Carter." 

Bristol, May, 1869. 

"You may like to know that during the five or six 
weeks of preparation I trained carefully, observing the 
prescribed diet, &c. ♦ ♦ ♦ As I was more or less a reading 
man, I sometimes sat up too late at night. ♦ ♦ ♦ I am 
now in my sixty-third year, and though I have not been 
without my share of the labours and trials of life, yet 
my constitution is not seriously impaired, as you may 
conclude, when I mention that I am still able to skate, 
to play at cricket with my sons, and that last year I 
rowed with them a distance of eight miles as stroke of a 

" Nor when I think of others whom I knew as a young 
man at both Universities, can I remember an instance 
of injury being done to the health which could fairly be 
set down to the exercise of rowing as then practised, 

"C. Wordsworth." 

Perth, May, 1869. 

"In the year 1829 I pulled number five, the heaviest 
oar in the Oxford Boat, in the first Race between Ox- 
ford and Cambridge at Henley-on-Thames, on which 
occasion Oxford beat Cambridge by several lengths. 
In addition to this, I pulled about 20 other races during 
my residence at Oxford. My weight was at that time 
about 14 st 10 lbs., it is now 15 st. 10 lbs. 

** I do not think the training or racing did me any kind 
f injury: but I have a good constitution, and have 


never had any illness, with the exception of the In- 
fluenza, since I was eight years old. * * * * 

" I should think Boat-Racing would very likely be 
injurious to men of weak constitutions. 

''J. J. TOOGOOD." 

Wetherby, May^ 1869. 

*' I rowed in the Boat-Race against Cambridge at 
Henley, in 1829. Our boats in those days were heavy 
compared with the outriggers of the present day, but the 
distance was considerably less, and our training not so 
severe. In fact it was left almost entirely to a man's 
own discretion, and if he possessed any, he would soon 
find out, that to get through the work satisfactorily in 
bad condition, was so impossible, and to attempt it so 
painful, that it was good policy, to say the least of it, 
to improve his constitution by moderate and wholesome 
diet and plenty of regular exercise. I pulled in the Christ 
Church racing boat the whole time I was there, finishing 
with the race with Cambridge. I never was in better 
health than during the whole time. I have never suf- 
fered from it since. I am now in my 6ist year, and 
can stand a hard day's work as well as I ever could. 
I cannot call to mind at this moment any one of my 
own acquaintance, whose health I believe to have been 
injured by his exertions in rowing ; and I am decidedly 
of opinion, that, provided there is no physical disqualifi- 
tion, no man who has the common sense to prepare 
himself properly for the work, is more likely to be 
injured by the exertions required of him in a Boat-Race, 
such as the Oxford and Cambridge Race, than by any 
other hard work, 

"George B. Moore." 

SiTTINGBOURNE, May^ 1869. 

9 — 2 


"I pulled for four years at Eton, and for four years 
at Oxford, and was, during that time, in every race that 
took place. I never suffered from the exertion then or 
since. Training as a system of preparation was little 
attended to, but I was proud to find that when I went 
to spend a couple of days some eighteen years after- 
wards at Oxford, there was a tradition in Christ Church 
of the steadiness and sobriety of the crews in my time 
and dynasty. 

" I have had remarkable health, and whenever I recall 
the sensation of extreme elasticity of mind and body, 
it is by thinking of one's feeling afler a Race, or night 
when we had come up at best pace. I have alwa^-s said 
that it more nearly realized the idea of jumping out of 
one's skin than anything else. 

•••Tho. Staniforth."' 

Windermere, Junt, 1869. 

Extracts from letters of the friends and relatives of 

tlie dead. 

"I never heard James Edward Arbuthnot complain 
that he had ever suffered in the slightest degree from the 
effects of training, boat-racing, &c., or that he was 
injured in any way by his aquatic exertions during the 
time he was at Oxford. He resided about 35 years in 
the Mauritius and always enjoyed excellent health, until 
he was attacked by the fever, in March, 1868. He had 
frequent attacks of it, and died on the 29th September 
of the same year, at the age of 59, from a severe attack 
of inflammatory dysentery caused by the fever." 


"The Rev. yohn Ellison Bates was Incumbent of 
Stratton Audley, and was afterwards at St Bride's, 
Liverpool ; from there he was appointed Incumbent of 
Waterloo, near Liverpool, and finally to Christchurch, 
Dover. He died of a painful illness under very aggra- 
vated circumstances. Previously to this he had been 
perfectly healthy and vigorous, and if I were asked I 
should say without hesitation that rowing had not in- 
jured his health. 

"He was buried at Dover on the 24th of February, 

" At the time of his death he was 46 years of age." 

" The late Thomas Gamier^ D.D., was Fellow of All 
Souls, and subsequently Chaplain to the House of 
Commons, Dean of Ripon, and finally Dean of Lincoln. 

" He was a strong powerful man, and shewed no ill 
effects whatever of his exertions in rowing. His heart 
in particular was strong and sound. * ♦ * 

" In consequence of an accident which occurred when 
he was about 45 his health gradually failed, and he died 
at the Deanery, Lincoln, on the 7th of December, 1863,. 
at the age of 54." 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of 

the Cambridge Crew, 

" I never found that rowing did me any harm, on the 
contrary, I think it benefited me. I have rowed a great 
deal since I left the University and have trained crews ; 
none of whom have ever been the worse for the exertion 


necessarily taken by those who take part in boat- 

'^ I may add that when I left Cambridge I was the 
stroke of the Trinity Boat, and she was at the head of 
the river, and that I rowed in the first Race between 
Oxford and Cambridge which took place at Henley-on- 
Thames nearly 40 years since. 

KiNGSBKiDGEy June^ 1869. 

" I am personally unable to mention a single man 
either on the Thames or at Cambridge whose health 
suffered in after life from rowing ; I have heard of such, 
but I know no one myself. My own health is, thank 
God, as strong as any man's of my age. 

" A. F. Bayford." 
London, May^ 1869. 

"I rowed in the first Oxford and Cambridge Race 
and for two years in the Cambridge Races ; * * I have 
escaped with little harm : I attribute to Boat-Racing 
something of a tendency to palpitation of the heart, 
which is sufficient to shew one harm that may be 
done. " Ch. WarreN." 

St Ives, June^ 1869. 

"In my time we rowed almost continually from 
October to June, and there was no attempt at scientific 
training for special exertion, of a few weeks or days. 
My own College boat's crew were generally reading 
men, and disposed to temperate and regular living. We 


abstained pretty constantly from spirits, smoking, and 
dyspeptic food ; and were, I believe, all naturally strong 
of constitution. I never heard then or since of any one 
having injured limb or constitution by the exertion of 
rowing. * * ♦ 

" On the whole, I should say from my own observa- 
tion of Cambridge rowing 40 years ago, that it was a 
thoroughly good and healthy exercise for the healthy 
and the temperate. " C. Merivale." 

London, June, 1869. 

" I beg to state that I never found any inconvenience 
to my health either at the time, or afterwards, from 
rowing in the University or other Boat-Races. Nor do 
I think that young men, in general, who are strong and 
healthy sustain any injury from the exercise, severe 
though it is; but rather the contrary. ♦ * * But for 
those who are at all delicate, and especially for those who 
have any organic complaint, I think it very dangerous, 
for the severity of the exertion is sure to find out a 
man's weak point. I may add, that, from what I hear 
from my sons and other young men, I think the system 
of training for these races is now much more rigid than 
it was in my time. Whether this be in itself an evil, I 
cannot undertake to say positively, but I incline to think 
it is. 

"Thomas Entwisle." 

Christchurch, Ap'ili 18 7.1. 

" I was in the Race of 1829. * * One great benefit of 
our rowing was that we were by rule, if not by inclina- 


tion, habitually temperate ; and I suppose all medical 
men will agree that little danger can arise from strong 
exercise in youth, if the body is always kept in a fit 
state. Active exercise combined with strict diet and 
regular habits had, I think, a most beneficial effect upon 
the constitution, and certainly enabled Bishop Tyrrell 
and myself on horseback and foot, in Australia and 
New Zealand, to make very long journeys without in- 

" G. A. Lichfield." 

Lichfield, yum, 1872. 

"I am very glad I can give you a most satisfactory 
account of the health of the crews under me at Cam- 
bridge. My Boat, the Lady Margaret, was head of the 
river for two years, and all are alive and well except one, 
of whom I have never heard since he left Cambridge. 
We pulled in the years 1828, 1829, 1830; they were 
never in better health than when they were rowing hard : 
several imputed their high degrees to the regular and 
healthful life we led together in the boat. When you 
consider this crew rowed together just 40 years ago it is 
singular how healthy we now all are. * * * All my 
crews were reading men and took high honours, and 
were at the head of the river besides. Our training in 
those years was not so severe as it was about 10 and 15 
years afterwards, when it became too severe, and now I am 
glad to say they find less training more profitable. * ♦ * 
I have quite made up my mind that rowing at the 
Universities is most conducive to a regular life and 
health in after years. I now row myself whenever I can 


get an opportunity. Reading men will always beat non- 
reading men. 

" W. Strahan." 

SiDMOUTH, yune, 1869. 

Extract from the letter of a relation, 

"The Rev. William Thomas Thompson was born 
September 30, 1801, and died from heart disease, 
November 10, 1840. He was therefore 39 when he 
died. He was a fine strong man at Cambridge, and 
was captain of the Jesus Eight, and pulled in the Uni- 
versity Crew in 1829. He was a first-rate cricketer as 
well as Oar, was in the University Eleven, as well as in 
the Eight, He was for some time Curate of Loddon in 
Norfolk, and also of Ridley and Ash, in Kent." 


After the lapse of some years, the second Race be- 
tween the sister Universities took place on the 17th of 
June, 1836, and was rowed in heavy soaking rain. Cam- 
bridge won the toss. One of the crew remarks : " The 
start was made too late, causing the tide to be against 
us in the half of Battersea Reach, and therefore making 
the contest an unusually severe one, as you may gather 
from the return of that race, the time of which exceeded 
any other (from this cause) over the same course." 
The Cambridge Boat came in easily one minute before 
her opponent, it having taken about 36 minutes to row 
the six miles under these adverse circumstances. 


The names of the crews were as follows : 


W. Hammond Solly, ist Trinity. 
F. S. Green, Caius. 
E. S. Stanley, Jesus. 
Percival Hartley, Trin, Hall. 
Warren M, Jones, Caius. 
John H. Keane, ist Trinity. 
Arthur W. Upcher, 2nd Trinity. 
Augustus K. B. Granville, Corpus. 

Coxswain, Thos. Selby Egan, Caius. 


George Carter, St John's. 
Edward Stephens, Exeter. 
William Baillie, Ch. Ch. 
T. Harris, Magd. 
Justinian Vere Isfiamy Ch. Ch. 
John Pennefather, Balliol. 
William S, Thomson^ Jesus. 
Fred. Luttrell Moysey, Ch. Ch. 

Coxswain, E, W. L. Davies, Jesus. 

Life-rate of the Crews. 

The years of life enjoyed and expected collectively 
by these 16 men after the Race may be estimated at 
681 instead of the average 640 years, and the individual 
lives at 42*5, instead of 40 years. In respect to longe- 
vity, therefore, the prospects of life of the crews were 
decidedly good. Twelve of the rowers were alive and 
in good health at the end of the year 1869. Four died 
prematurely (from causes unconnected with rowing), at- 


taining on an average 22 instead of 40 years of life after 
the Race. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

4 12 o. 

Extracts from the letters of tlie surviving members 

of the Cambridge Crew. 

"You ask me 'whether the training and exertions 
demanded of men who row in the Oxford and Cam- 
bridge Race are of so trying a character that in nume- 
rous instances the constitution is liable to be perma- 
nently injured ?' I have no hesitation in saying that in 
my opinion that is not the case. I rowed in the Cam- 
bridge Boat in 1836, and I believe that (with one 
exception) the whole crew are now alive, and I do not 
believe his death was caused by rowing. I also rowed 
every Race during the three years I was at Cambridge 
in the ist Trinity, and out of the old crew I do not 
know of one death. I do not say there may not have 
been, as of course I have lost sight of some, but if so, 
I have not heard of it. * * * In my time, as you are 
probably aware, the old-fashioned boats were in use, 
and the course over which the University Race was 
rowed was from Westminster to Putney, called six 
miles, and the distance was covered by a good crew in 
30 minutes at the top of the tide. 

" In those days we used, for the fortnight we were in 
town previous to the race, to row every day hard aU over 
the whole course one way or the other. * * * I mention 


these facts, simply to shew that the work we did in 
former times was quite as severe, and probably more 
than is now done ; but whether or not the style of rowing 
in the outriggers takes more out of men than the old- 
fashioned boat did, I leave to better judges than myself 
to decide. My own idea is that men in the present 
day over train ; as I firmly believe that every man from 
1 8 to 20, in good health and fairly abstemious, is, with 
the proper preparation of constant rowing, perfectly 
able to row any race without extra training ; and more 
than this, that unless a man has some constitutional 
infirmity (and such men ought never to think of rowing), 
and lives moderately, no amount of rowing will hurt 
him. I know these opinions are very old-fashioned, but 
as you ask for them, I give them, such as they are. I 
may add, that my great objection to the very strict 
training men now go through, is that after the race is 
over, they so soon become infinitely in worse condition 
than before they began. 

"W. Hammond Solly.'* 

Hemel Hempstead, June, 1869. 

" I have experienced no ill effects whatever from 
rowing ; and I was in every race. College and University, 
during my residence at Cambridge. Twas captain of 
the Caius Boat, and rowed 1836 and 1837, against 
Oxford and the Leander crew. 

''F. S. Green." 

Church Stoke, Ap-il, 187 1. 

" I began myself as a young boy of thirteen at Eton, 
took a great liking to rowing, wishing to distinguish 


myself, worked very hard at it ; I was not a strong boy 
at that age, but the care I took of myself, and the 
violent exercise, certainly improved my health and 
caused me to grow up a strong enduring young man. 

"I have never felt any ill effects from the violent 
exercise I took when young. 

"E. S. Stanley." 

Jersey, May^ 1869. 

'*I am not conscious of having brought upon myself 
any evil consequences by hard rowing in early life. My 
rowing days extended over a longer period than is the 
case with many, who take up the amusement when they 
go up to College and lay it down again as soon as, or 
even before, they leave the University; but I have not, 
so far, I am thankful to say, experienced any ill effects 
from my exertions. 

*'Percival Hartley." 

YOUGHAL, JutUy 1869. 

"In reply to your enquiries, I had the honour of 
rowing in the Cambridge University Crew both in 1836 
and 1837. In 1836 we rowed Oxford from Westminster 
Bridge to Putney, and won very easily. 

"In 1837 Oxford declined to row, or could not form 
a crew. Cambridge then challenged the Leander, the 
crack London Crew, and beat them, much to their 
surprise, by six boats' lengths over the same course. 
The race in each year was rowed in heavy soaking rain. 

* Our training was not so strictly enforced as I under- 
stand it to be of late years. Still, we lived carefully^ 
an4 were in good condition ; in proof of which, I recollect 


in practising in 1837 we rowed from Putney to West- 
minster on a good ebb tide, in 28 minutes and 35 
seconds, the distance 5 J miles, without any one of the 
crew being distressed. This could not have been done 
by men in imperfect condition. I do not consider the 
training and exertion demanded were of so trying a 
nature as to injure the constitution permanently. 

"John H. Keane." 

Cappoquin, June, 1869. 

"The subject of your letter is very interesting, and I 
should be glad if I could give you any information about 
it that would be of any use to you, beyond what you 
will have gathered from many others. During my stay 
at Cambridge I lived a quiet and steady life, and the 
regular exercise of rowing suited me very well. As far 
as I can remember, I pulled in every Eight-oared Race 
while I was up, except in one during my " Freshman " 
year. I pulled under Selwyn (at the head of the river 
for a considerable time), who now looks as strong as 
ever he did; and I believe all our crew are still alive 
and strong, except Mr Harris, who died not long ago at 
Harrow. In my time I suppose the training was not 
nearly so severe as it is now-a-days for men of that age. 
I should think it might easily be overdone, so as to lose 
their elasticity. The Race in which I pulled from 
Westminster to Putney was very easy, in fact, not re- 
quiring so much exertion as in common practising 
days. None of the crew were personal friends of mine, 
so that I have kept up no correspondence with them, 
but of some I have heard that they are strong hearty 

" I may add, that I used to hear at Cambridge of 


instances of men falling into bad health and of death 
ensuing, which used to be put to the charge of over 
exertion in rowing; but I did not know of one that I 
thought really such. On the contrary, I believe that 
such cases might all more or less be traced to drinking; 
but for the sake of not shocking the feelings of parents 
and friends, rowing was made to bear the blame. No 
doubt, young fellows with bad lungs ought not to be 
out all weathers upon the river, nor ought a diseased 
heart to have anything to do with a Racing-Boat ; but if 
a man is healthy, and leads a decent life, and does not 
eat or drink immoderately, I believe that rowing is a 
healthy and strengthening exercise. 

•'Arthur W. Upcher." 

Cromer, Juney 1869. 

" For myself I may speak with great confidence. I 
sustained no injury from rowing, and in no way im- 
paired my health ; I am now a robust man, though more 
than thirty years have passed since the contests in which 
I bore a part, and had rowing 'been bad' for me, to use 
the phrase of the day, it is quite certain it must have 
found me out. I have pleasure in recollecting the ex- 
treme hilariousness produced by the exercise, which 
to me was never excessive, for I was as fresh at the end 
of a 'good puir as at the beginning, whether practising 

or racing. 

"A. K. B. Granville." 

Iffley, yune^ 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of friends. 

"I recollect Warren Jones well ; he was a tall, well- 
developed young man, rather taller than the rest of the 


crew; the cause of his death I was told, was typhus, or 
some low fever: it had nothing to do with rowing." 

"I have ascertained that Warren Jones died of 
typhus in 1843 at Lower Charlton." 

"I do not think, as far as my memory serves me, 
that he in any way injured himself, or was the worse for 

Extracts from the letters of tlw surviving members of 

t/ie Oxford Crem, 

"I rowed in the Oxford University Boat in the year 
1836. The Race was from Westminster to Putney, a 
distance of nearly six miles. The exertion and training 
necessary for so long and hard a race told upon me at 
the time, though I do not think my health has been 
permanently injured. * * ♦ I am afraid I can give you 
no statistics in reference to my contemporaries, as I 
have never had much communication with any of them 
since. I have no hesitation, however, in saying that I 
think the training required for a University Race is too 
severe for the generality of young men, and that the 
constitution runs considerable risk of being seriously 
injured. I should never wish any of my own boys to 
engage in so severe a contest. I perhaps may as well 
say that I was passionately fond of rowing. 

"George Carter." 

Faringdon, May^ 1869. 

"My own rowing career was only of five seasons 
duration, namely, at Eton in 1832 and 1833, and at 
Christchurch 1834, 1835 and 1836. I left Eton with a 
good reputation, and when I went up to Christchurch in 


January or February 1834, I was immediately put into 
the Racing-Boat of our College, consisting of four 
Etonians, three Westminster men, and one Charter- 
house man. I have often thought since then that was 
the best crew I ever pulled in. We kept head of the 
river with the greatest ease. ♦ * * I never saw a race 
from the bank during my whole stay at Oxford, being 
always pulling. * ♦ * I was so fond of rowing that I 
still forget myself when speaking on the subject. I 
don't think my health suffered in any way from the 
exertions either in training or actual pulling during all 
my career. Nor am I aware that any of those I knew 
suffered in health afterwards in consequence; but at the 
same time I believe our training in those days was not 
nearly so severe or so regulated and looked after by 
professional trainers as it is now. ♦ ♦ * 

" My own idea is, that if a young fellow is well built, 
muscular, and plenty of him, has a good constitution, 
and is in robust health, very little real harm will be 
done even with severe training. But a bad constitu- 
tioned man, however muscular and strong, must suffer. 

"William Baillie." 

POLKEMMET, December^ 1869. 

" For my own part, I can safely say that I am not 
aware that my health has suffered in any way either 
now or in time past. I would observe, however, that in 
those early days the training was neither so strict nor 
so protracted as it has become since. Indeed, little was 
ordinarily done in that respect at that time, beyond an 
extra beefsteak occasionally, abstinence from pastry &c., 
and moderation in the use of wine, cigars &c., not, I 
fear, always very strictly observed. Whether the health 
U. O. 10 


would be more likely to suffer from this loose training 
than from a stricter system, prolonged for an excessive 
length of time, you will be better able to judge than 
myself. I am sorry that I cannot give you more in- 
formation upon a subject which has naturally much 
interest for old lovers of the oar. 

"T. Harris/' 

SWERFORD, May^ 1869. 

" No apology was necessary from you for writing to 
me on the subjectof Boat-Racing; a sport in which in 
former days I took very great interest and pleasure. 
When I was at school at Westminster I was the ' Head 
of the Water,' and consequently when I was elected from 
thence a Student of Christ Church, Oxon, I was soon 
put into the College Eight, and eventually became its 
Captain and Stroke Oar. In the year 1836 I was also 
Captain of the University, and rowed the Stroke Oar 
against Cambridge, and, alas, lost my Race. 

" In reply to your question I can honestly say that 
though in my days our boats were barges compared with 
the crank things used in the present races, I never knew 
any one in the slightest degree the worse for the exertion. 
I take it that the work was decidedly harder, but the 
training not so severe. My own feeling (expressed often 
when the Times was deluged with letters on the subject, 
though / never appeared in print) is, that over training 
is what those who may have suffered from Boat-racing 
have to thank for their failure. They have not done 
growing, and have not stamina for such excessive train- 
ing and such hard work on it. 

*'Fred. Luttrell Moysey." 

Cheltenham, May, 1869. 


Extracts from letters of the friends and relations of 

the dead. 

^^ Justinian Vere Isham died in 1846; his health waS 
not in the least impaired by his rowing exercise, and 
his death was not attributable to that cause. 

"/j^w did not experience injurious effects of any- 
kind whatever from the Boat-Race, and was never heard 
to express any apprehensions on the subject." 

^^John Pennefatker, who pulled in 1836, died of a 
malignant fever in his forty-second year. I am not 
aware that he traced ill effects to pulling ; I knew him 
most intimately." 

" I had the pleasure of Mr W. S. Thomson's ac- 
quaintance for many years. He was in holy orders, 
and served several curacies in this diocese (St Asaph). 

*' About ten years ago he was left a large property, 
upon which he ceased discharging the duties of the 
curacies which he held, and merely occasionally assisted 
his friends. After he left Oxford he met with an acci- 
dent while shooting, which necessitated the amputation 
of one of his arms. He was a man of much bodily 
strength, and whatever exertions he made in Boat- 
Racing seemed to have had no injurious effect whatever 
upon him. He died in 1867." 




Two years again passed by without a r^^lar Uni- 
versity Match, but on the 3rd of April, 1839, the rival 
Boats once more met on the waters of the Thames. It 
seems universally admitted that while Oxford pulled with 
undoubted pluck and energy, Cambridge for the time 
possessed the true science of the art of rowing, as we are 
told in BeWs Life that her '* stroke was really terrific, 
one of the severest we ever saw, ♦ ♦ * and tremendously 
swift." The Race resulted in an easy victoiy for Cam- 
bridge, their opponents being nearly two minutes later 
in reaching the winning-post ; time, 31 minutes. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


Alfred H. Shadwell, St. John's. 

Warington W. Smyth, ist Trinity. 

John Abercrombie, Caius. 

A, Paris f Corpus. 

C. T. Penrose^ Trinity. 

William Hamilton Yatman, Caius. 

W. Baliol Brett, Caius. 

E. S. Stanley *, Jesus. 

Coxswain, Thos. Selby Egan, Caius. 


Stanlake Lee, Queen's. 
John Compton, Merton. 
5. E. Maberly, Ch. Ch. 
William J. Garnett, Ch. Ch. 

^ Rowed also in the Race of 1836. 


R. G. Walls, Brasenose. 

R. Hobhouse, Balliol. 

Philip Lybbe Powys Lybbe, Balliol. 

Calverky Bewicke, Univ. 

Coxswain, W. Ffooks, Exeter. 

Life-rate of the Crews, 

Time has proved that these two Crews were com- 
posed of a healthy set of men, whose collective lives 
may be set down at 686 years after the Race, or 
46 years more than ordinary good lives. Hence the 
average duration of life for the Crews exceeds, by nearly 
3 years per man, their estimated life-rate as ordinary 
sound men. Four of the 16 men are now dead, one of 
whom died in 1848, one in 1861, a third in 1866, and 
one in 1867. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon tlie Crews. 
Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 
7 7*2 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of 

the Cambridge Crew. 

"According to my own experience rowing never 
hurt anyone who rowed much and well. As far as I 
myself was concerned, I began my rowing life in public 
by rowing against Westminster as an Eton boy, in 1836. 
I went up to Cambridge in the October of that year, 
and rowed in every Eight Oar race during my stay there, 
so that I never saw a Race at Cambridge until after I 
had left in 1840. I was in the University Crews racing 


— ■ ■ • 

from Westminster to Putney ; after I left I rowed one 
Race from Westminster to Putney in 1841, and at the 
Henley Regatta in the years 1841, 1842 and 1843, and 
finally at the Thames Regatta in 1845 ; so that for a 
gentleman my career was a long one. * * * The Cam- 
bridge Crew of 1839 was, I think, about as good a 
gentleman Crew as ever has been. * * * Of course no 
one knows so much of the men younger than himself, 
but almost all the men who were celebrated as rowing 
men in my time are still well — as are nearly all of the 
more distinguished ones younger than myself whom 
I have known. — The word / occurs very often in this 
note, but you asked for personal experience. 

"Alfred H. Shadwell." 

London, August, 1669. 

"I rowed in every race during my whole career at 
Cambridge, not even omitting the Autumn Races between 
Captains and University, and for two years in the Uni- 
versity Crew on the Thames against Leander and 
Oxford. My University Crew of 1839 was reckoned 
the best, for many years before and after. * * ♦ I have 
led an exceptionally physically active life, and hkving 
to inspect the Prince's minerals in Cornwall, do my 
climbing on the ladders for one or two hundred fathoms 
against most competitors^ whence I trust I am sound in 
\vind and limb. 

"Warington W. Smyth." 

London, June, 1869. 

"At the time that I rowed, the course was from 
Westminster to Putney, a distance of about 5f miles, 


and this we rowed over at racing pace (one way) every 
day for eight or ten days ; on looking back at this work, 
I am disposed to think that it was rather more than was 
judicious for me at the time, but only as regards the 
point of being in full strength on the day of the Race, 
for I did not suffer in any way to injure me either at the 
time or since, nor am I aware that any of my crew were 
at all injuriously affected by the work, and our Captain 
rowed in races for twenty years after our Inter-Uni- 
versity Race. I have heard the opinion stated that 
these races are very prejudicial, and even fatal at an 
early period to all who engage in them. I do not share 
that opinion ; I think that assuming the men to be sound 
in wind and limb, as the phrase goes, the cases of injury 
would be exceptional. 

Cheltenham, Jufyy 1869. 

"In answer to your letter of the 7th, requesting 
information whether the exertion of rowing in the Uni- 
versity Matches during my residence at College has 
proved in any way injurious to my after health, I beg 
to say that I do not think it has. * * * Since then I 
have hunted, and played cricket, and taken much out- 
door's exercise, * * * and my heart and lungs are pro- 
nounced sound. * * * 

" William Hamilton Yatman." 

Tetbury, Aprils 1871. 

"In my opinion, the rowing practised at Cambridge 
as it was practised in my time, did no harm to any one. 
I never could trace any mischief done by it to any one 



^— — ^— ^i^— — i^»^i^i^"^M^— ^ I I 1^ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ .1 ■ I ■■■■■■■ .^M ■■■■■■ ■■ ■■!■ ^iM^^^^i^M— I^M^— — ^M^.M^— — — ^— ^Mi» 

I knew. I myself rowed as much and as hard as 
any one. Including College Races, I rowed, I believe, 
seventy-two matches during the years I practised the 
art. I never suffered in any the slightest degree. On 
the contrary, being six feet one inch and a half high 
when I went up to Cambridge at nineteen years of age, 
and weighing then ten stone four pounds, I developed 
into a weight of twelve stone four pounds before I left 
Cambridge, and maintained that weight until middle 

''W. Baliol Brett." 

Manchester, August^ 1877. 

Extracts from letters of tJie friends and relatives of 

the dead. 

*' Archie Paris died October 24th, 1861. 

"As far as my information goes, Mr Paris experi- 
enced no ill effects from his rowing labours. On the 
other hand, previous to his last illness he was con- 
sidered a robust and powerful man; his 'tout ensemble' 
was that of a squire of the olden time. 

"I can only write at present, that so far as I am 
aware his after health was exceedingly sound, and that 
he was a fine healthy-looking man until he was attacked 
by the disease which proved fatal to him." 

C, T. Penrose, my particular friend, died some two 
years ago, of something unconnected with exercise, 
however excessive. 

" J/r Penrose pulled in three University Races, his 
illness and death were not in the remotest degree trace- 
able to over exertion in those contests." 


Extracts from the letters of tlie surviving members of the 

Oxford Crew, 

**My own experience has been considerable, and 
perhaps above the average of most Oarsmen, for I was 
virtually 3 years in the University Crew. I say virtually, 
because the first Race in which I pulled was in 1837, 
when in consequence of not being able to get picked 
Crews together in time, it was agreed that the head boat 
of Oxford should race the Iiead boat of Cambridge. 
This came off as the University Race at Henley. Cam- 
bridge, however, afterwards objected to that Race being 
considered a University Race, as the Crews were not 
picked from the whole Universities. We won that Race. 
In 1838 I was again Bow-Oar of a picked University 
Crew, and went through all the labour of training ; but 
at the last moment a difference arose about pulling in 
Passion-week, and there was no Race. In 1839 I was 
Bow-Oar of the University Crew, and pulled over the 
then course from Westminster to Putney (six miles)- 
I mention this to shew that I have had a fair share of 
the experience of a racing Oarsman. * * * As to my 
impression of the effect of training and racing on the 
constitution, I think that, if there is a predisposition to 
disease in the heart or lungs, or even a natural weakness 
in either of them, the severe strain upon these organs 
in the process of rowing must be injurious. At the 
same time this would depend upon the way in which 
the training is done. If gradually ^ by not overtaxing 
the heart and lungs before they have been made capable 
of enduring what, under ordinary circumstances, \vould 
be an excess of exertion, I should not anticipate any 
injurious results. As regards men who are naturally 


sound in heart and lungs, the training and racing do not 
hurt them, provided only that they carefully and gra- 
dually prepare themselves for it. 

" I may conclude by saying of myself, that I am 
none the worse for the Boat- Racing, as I have for nine 
years done three duties every Sunday, and in the 
shooting season can walk men off their l^s who are 
25 years my juniors. 

"Stanlake Lee." 

Stockbridge, May, 1869. 

"I rowed in the Oxford and Cambridge match in 
1839, from Westminster to Putney. The race then, I 
suppose, involved greater exertion than the present ones, 
as the boats were very much heavier, and the course 
much longer. On looking back, I cannot see that I 
have in any way suffered from it, having enjoyed un- 
interrupted health and strength. The part I imagine 
likely to be hurt is the heart, but as yet there is not 
the slightest sign of derangement there. * * ♦ 

"I cannot suppose that such very severe exercise (I 
believe that just after a hard race the pulse is so quick that 
it cannot be felt so as to be counted) can be good for any 
one, considering the matter by itself, and if young 
men were as sedate and prudent as old ones, they would 
never undertake such foolish things ; but if I had a son 
at the University, who I was sure was perfectly sound, 
I should encourage him to train if he was inclined, as I 
believe it would, if he were a boy of high spirit and 
strong energy and physical force, very greatly help to 
keep him out of mischief, 

Lyndhurst, May^ 1869. 


"I don't think rowing ever did me any harm, though 
I certainly did not like the very early season at which 
the University match in which I rowed took place; I 
think it is a great mistake to have the University Race 
so early in the spring, which we all know is the trying 
season of the year to every one, and when the low 
temperature and cold winds do not allow of that relief 
to the system through the skin, which is so essential 
to robust health. I was always very temperate in my 
habits, and could almost say I was ready to pull a race 
at any time, with little or no training; I had gone 
through some gymnastic training abroad before ever I 
pulled in a racing boat either at Eton or Oxford, and 
I consider that to have been much in my favour; for 
what was often an exertion very trying to others, my 
contemporaries, I thoroughly enjoyed. 

"If men will not take care of themselves, but live in- 
temperate and reckless lives, and then think to go into 
training for a few weeks and pull in a Boat-Race, they will 
most likely find out, sooner or later, that they can't 
escape painful consequences. But if a young fellow has 
really a pleasure in the exercise of rowing, is robust and 
vigorous, and will live as he ought to do, I don't think 
rowing will hurt him. 

"William J. Garnett." 

London, May^ 1869. 

"It gives me great pleasure to answer your en- 
quiries about the earlier Races between Oxford and 
Cambridge. I rowed in the years 1839 and 1840 — it 
seems a long time ago. There had been no race be- 
tween the Universities since 1836: the Race was then 


from Westminster Bridge to Putney, a somewhat longer 
course than the present ; so it was quite as hard work. 
I never felt any ill effects from the Race, nor did I ever 
hear of any of my friends suffering in the least. In 
fact, I do not think the University Race on the Lon- 
don water is anything like so trying as the Race at 
Henley, or even the College Races. I don't know what 
time you were at University College, but our College 
(B. N. C.) had some tremendous contests with University. 
The Menzies, two brothers, Highlanders, were the great 
stay of their boat. I was on the water almost every 
day, winter and summer, and after the Races I used to 
finish up by rowing down to London and then going 
down into Lincolnshire by the mail coach, — not train in 
those days, and of course I was very sleepy for the 
next week ; that was all I ever suffered. I do not 
suppose that those people who attribute ill effects 
to rowing were ever much used to it. I do not know 
anything of the rowing now, I give you my opinion 
of what it was 30 years ago. 

" R. G. Walls." 

Spilsby, May, 1869. 

*'I cannot call to mind any instance of a man's 
health being permanently injured by rowing. I think 
there may have been some who were obliged to give up 
the practice from finding themselves not strong enough 
to continue it. But if any who were able to continue 
in it suffered in health afterwards, I should expect to 
find, on enquiry into their cases, that they were persons 
who did not attend properly to diet and regimen during 
^.e time of their boating exertion. For this certainly 


was necessary to secure immunity from injury, viz. a 
plain and wholesome diet, and a regular and proper 
mode of life : granted this, and sufficient robustriess to 
enable a man to continue the exertion at all, I do 
not think there would be any fear whatever of injury, 
nor do I know any cases of it. * * During the earlier 
part of 21 years of hard and anxious work in a parish, 
I continually felt that the discipline and training that 
I had gone through for rowing purposes was of great 
value to me in a higher point of view. On the whole, 
my judgment is that the outcry against rowing is base- 
less, provided first, that those who engage in it have 
a certain amount- of stamina and do not persevere 
against first warnings ; and secondly, that they live 
soberly and temperately, and on wholesome and muscle- 
making food. 

LisKEARD, May^ 1869. 

"Come and see me, and then you can judge whether 
I look much the worse for rowing. I have been an 
Oarsman sinc^ my boyhood ; could row probably before 
I could write. I was reared on the banks of Thames. 
My father was a very good Oarsman at St John's, Oxford, 
and put me to work going down in the boat to Maple 
Durham church on Sunday afternoons. I rowed all 
through my Eton and Oxford life, and was seven in an 
Oxford Crew in 1839. Three years I rowed seven in 
the Balliol Boat, and about three more years I rowed 
seven in the Oxford London rowing crew; since that 
time I have been continually rowing. * * * The 
very fastest four-oared boat (bar one) was the John 4- 


of your College. ♦ * * I am of opinion that no able- 
bodied youth or man will be damaged by rowing if 
he trains. Training is a great art, and very few people 
can train gentlemen. * * * Boys and young men must 
do something. I found my College Boat the cheapest 
amusement in Oxford. I never hunted, but always 
rowed. I consider match-rowing without training most 
dangerous. * * * * If people take liberties they must 
stand to the consequences. 

"Philip Lybbe Powys Lybbe." 

Reading, May^ 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of tlie friends and relations of 

the dead. 

" »S. E. Maberly^ a most devoted clergyman, died in 

" Calverley Bewicke^ a first-rate Oar, died in 1866." 


This year the Race took place on the 15th of April. 
The contest was of a most exciting nature, as for some 
distance Oxford kept the lead, both Crews rowing most 
gallantly. At length, however, the Cambridge men 
drew their boat slowly ahead, and after a severe 
struggle succeeded in leavmg their opponents two-thirds 
of a length astern at the winning-post — time 29 minutes, 
seconds. Course from Westminster to Putney. 


The names of the Crews were as follows : 


Alfred H. Shadwell \ St John's. 
W. Massey, ist Trin. 
S. B. Taylor, ist Trin. 
John M. Ridley, Jesus. 
G. C. Uppleby, Magd. 

F. C. Penrose, Magd. 
Heighway Jones, Magd. 
Charles M. Vialls, 3rd Trin. 

Coxswain, Thos. Selby Egan, Caius. 


y. G. Mountain, Merton. 
I. J. J. Pocock, Merton. 
S. E, Maberly^y Ch. Ch. 
William Rogers, Balliol. 
R. G. Walls*, Brasenose. 
E. Royds, Brasenose. 

G. Meynell, Brasenose. 

John Somers Cocks, Brasenose. 

Coxswain, W. B. Garnett, Brasenose. 

Life-rate of tJie Crews. 

These two boats were manned by a very healthy set 
of men, who may be expected to enjoy 692 instead of 
640 years of life after the Race ; the lives of the indi- 
vidual Oarsmen extending on an average over 43 and a 
half instead of over 40 years. ' Those who died before 
1869 ^U belonged to the Oxford Boat, they lived on an 
average 14 years after they rowed in this Race. 

^ Rowed also in 1839. 


Effects of Training and Boat-racing on tJu CrcTvs. 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

3 13 

Extracts from the letters of the Cambridge Crew. 

" As regards my opinion of rowing, I believe it to be 
a very healthy exercise, provided the rower has a fairly 
good constitution. I totally disbelieve half that is said 
about it, as having no foundation in fact ; and you will 
very well understand what a very convenient thing it is 
to lay the blame pn rowing when the real cause is not 
in any way so creditable. I was for a short time in the 
second crew, and 1 was then put into the first crew, at an 
. oar very much above my strength — No. 4 — and I used to 
feci the strain on me so great that the luxury of sitting 
down in the boat-house has been a sort of memory with, 
mc ever since. This however only lasted one quarter, 
and I never felt any ill effects from it. I then pulled the 
Stroke Oar, and remained in that place till I left — win- 
ning with our 1st Trinity crew the first Henley Regatta 
Cup, and I pulled in the University Crew the next year. 
During all the time I rowed I felt about as well and 
strong as possible, until the last Race I pulled, which 
was the Henley Regatta : I had nothing that I knew of 
the matter with me, but I lost a stone in weight and felt 
altogether weak and not up to work ; I am very sure 
this was not the fault of rowing* and I never felt any 
further ill effects from it. I was also during three years 
playing in all the matches at Cambridge in the Eleven 
at cricket, and I am now, I believe, thank God, as free 
from ailments and fresh as anybody could expect to be 

at my age. 

"W. Massey." 

Beaumaris, June^ 1869. 



'* You do not let me into the secret of your own 
views upon the much debated point on which you write 
to me. Perhaps, however, you are at present only an 
enquirer, but anyhow I hope you will not be displeased to 
learn what I am very pleased and thankful to be able to 
state, that at the present moment I am in quite as good 
a state of health as in 1840, when I rowed in the Inter- 
University Match, and that I have had uo illness worth 
speaking of between these periods. So that I may 
decidedly be quoted among the examples of those upon 
whom rowing has not acted prejudicially in after life. 
Indeed I am often inclined to attribute tny present good 
statq of health in a great degree to hard txercise in 
early life, though this may not be a very logical conclu- 

« S. B. Taylor." 

Epsom, April, 1871. 

" I was a member of the Crews which rowed for 
Cambridge against Oxford in 1840, 1841, 1842. I have 
among my acquaintances many who rowed in Univer- 
sity Crews, both previously and subsequently to those 
years, and, except in one instance, I can safely say that 
I cannot trace any evil effects to exertion from rowing. 

" John M. Ridley.'* 

Hexham, May, 1869. 

" I rowed in the Cambridge University Crew against 
Oxford in 1840, and in every Race during my stay at 
the University ; nor am I aware that I have sustained 
any injury from it, nor do I know of any men that have. 

U. O. 1 1 


* * * My opinion is that the exertion is too severe and 
more or less injurious, but not more so than the pro- 
found idleness, gluttony and dissipation of those who 
did not row. 

" G. C. Uppleby." 

Ulceby, yune, x%6g. 

" I pulled myself three times in those Races, and am, 
I dare say, now enjoying as good health as most people 
at 52 years of age can expect * * * I think I knew of 
two cases where pulling acted injuriously, two among, 
say 400. 

'' F. C. Penrose." 

London, November, 1869. 

" There are few of the old Cambridge Oarsmen of 
my date who pulled in the University Matches, but are 
still, as far as I know, strong men, and in my opinion 
quite equal to compete with those of the same age. 
Men of a weakly constitution certainly have no business 
to undertake any exercise that taxes their strength to 
the utmost, rowing of course included ; and if they yield 
under the trial, their imprudence should be condemned, 
and not the manly games of Old England. The ad- 
vantages of our athletic competitions much more than 
counterbalance the few cases that occur of persons 
yielding. As for myself, after twelve years of colonial 
work, far more trying than rowing exercises, I may still 
call myself a strong man in my 5 3rd year. When I say 
this, rowing cannot be said to have started me (physi- 
cally) in life very badly. One thing I think I may 
safely say, the self-restraints required to keep up to 


what IS called condition for contesting never did half 
the injury to the constitution as the laxity of others. 

" H4y Jones." 

PONTESFORD, April^ 1 87 1. 

" I have been accustomed to rowing since I was a 
child, and rowed in many races both at School and 
College. I am constantly in the habit of meeting those 
with whom and against whom I rowed. I cannot call 
to mind any instance, except one doubtful one, in which 
injury has been sustained from the exertions we under- 
went. In my opinion rowing was an advantage rather 
than an injury to a sound constitution, and that at 
School and at College those who found themselves 
unsuited to such hard exercise relinquished the practice 
before they injured themselves. * * * Formerly it was 
the custom to row to train, simply being careful as to 
diet and hours, before an approaching Race. Now they 
train to row, and I think it possible more harm may be 
done by over-training than by rowing. I frequently 
hear of crews looking over-trained, and I believe it is 
the general opinion that rowing has not improved at 
either University. 

" Charles M. Vialls." 

London, June^ 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of the 

Oxford Crew. 

" I am of opinion that the training and exertion 
demanded of those who engage in the Oxford and Cam- 

II — 2 


bridge Boat-Races are not of so trying a nature that in 
numerous instances the constitution is liable to be per- 
manently injured ; I mean of course when the men them- 
selves are strong and healthy in the outset. JMo doubt 
many young men of delicate constitutions, some per- 
haps with the seeds of latent disease about them, 
engage in these and other violent exercises to which 
they are physically unequal; but such men I think soon 
discover, or it is discovered for them, that they are un- 
able to do the work ; and it is not, I presume, from 
such cases that an argument would be shaped for or 
against Boat-Racing ; but what those interested in the 
enquiry would probably ask is, whether among those 
who have had the reputation of being strong enduring 
Oarsmen at the Universities, a failure in health some 
years later may be reasonably traced to their exertions 
in the boats while at College. 

"In speaking of my personal experience it is right 
that I should state, that when I left off rowing races 
about 25 years ago I became much alarmed at some 
pains and discomfort I felt about my heart ; but I always 
had from a boy a weak digestion, and I attribute what 
I felt more to the cessation from strong exercise (while 
eating and drinking freely) than to any harm occasioned 
by it. I am now nearly 50 years old, and I don't think 
I am better or worse in health than I was at Oxford. 
* * * All my old rowing friends whom I meet with 
appear to be in the strongest health. I believe cases 
to the contrary, though of course some exist, are very 

** I. J. J. POCOCK." 
Maidenhead, May^ 1869. 


" I am well, and in fact, though I have spent a most 
laborious life, working in some of the worst parts of the 
City of London, seldom absent from duty, I have never 
suffered except sometimes perhaps from mental anxiety, 
but have always been restored after a short cessation. 
Though, like an Englishman, I complain, and tell my 
friends that I am breaking up, they do not believe me, 
and I do not believe it myself. I do not believe that 
rowing is injurious, if men are only moderate in the 
exercise, and moderate after the exercise. I constantly 
see old rowing men, with whom I was associated at 
Eton and Oxford, hale and strong. 

'' W. Rogers." 

London, April, 187 1. 

" Your course as to athletics seems to an unpro- 
fessional eye the sensible one. I think I can answer 
your questions not only for myself but for a good many 
of my contemporaries as well, as I happen lately to 
have seen or been in communication with many. At 
19 I rowed in the Oxford Crew against Cambridge, 
from Westminster to Putney, six miles, A. D. 1840; 
1 841 ditto; 1843 in the Oxford seven oar at Henley, 
and with an additional man at London Regatta ; besides 
College Races, four oars, pair oars, &c. &c I have 
never felt any inconvenience, except that when first 
ordained want of strong exercise made me unwell for 
a short time ; now I think I could walk or run against 
most men of my age, and have excellent health. ♦ ♦ * 
Many of my fellow Oarsmen in the University Boat I 
have seen and heard from quite lately, and a heartier 
set for their age I never met with.' I do not think 


however that University Crews are those likely to be 
injured, they are 'picked men/ but among my own 
friends in College Crews I have known very few or 
none permanently injured ; in the University Boats 
not one. I can quite believe an unsound constitution 
might be fatally injured ; but again, I think the course 
of training a great safeguard, as almost certain to 
bring out the weakness before any serious injury is 
done ; and any doubtful man would be draughted at 

''Edward Royds." 

CONGLETON, May^ 1869. 

"You are right in your supposition that I rowed 
against Cambridge in the years 1840 and 1841. I was 
Stroke Oar each year, and also rowed in the B. N. C. 
racing boat for three years, as well as having trained 
hard at Westminster against Eton for three years pre- 
viously. I find myself as well in health as most of my 
contemporaries, or as my three brothers, who have good 
constitutions, but have never rowed in this violent way. 
* * * But though I can speak thus favourably from 
my own personal experience and from what I know of 
my fellow Oarsmen, I do feel that any organic weakness 
must be developed by such intense exertion, however 
much prepared for by training which in itself is trying, 
though of course absolutely necessary for the prudent 
accomplishment of rowing matches. The training how- 
ever generally proves those athletic frames who appear 
fitted for their places to be so, or to be wanting in con- 
stitution, which of course you are well aware does not 
jalways go with muscular power. 

"John Somers Cocks." 

Boulogne, June, 1869. 


Extracts from the letters of the friends and relatives of 

the dead. 

^^ Mountain went as a missionary to Newfoundland, 
and the privation, voluntary and involuntary, which he 
underwent may have hastened his death." 

" J. G. Mountain, the best man in the boat, and so 
beautifully made that we used to call him the ' Apollo 
Belvedere,' went out as a missionary and caught a 
fever of which he died." 

" I am not aware that Mountain suffered from the 
University Race, he was constantly rowing for some 
years after." 

^^ Mountain died of acute disease in 1856, while in 
otherwise excellent health." 

^^ Godfrey Meynell died July 3, 1858, from natural 
causes, which had nothing to do with rowing." 

" Meynell did not suffer any ill effects from his ex- 
ertions in boating, and was a strong healthy man until 
he broke down with an attack of illness ; from this he 
recovered and lived, I believe, a few years pretty well, 
when he was taken with his last illness, a severe febrile 
attack, and died. I never think of his death without 
feeling that I then lost the best friend and the most 
estimable man I ever knew." 



This match took place on Wednesday April 14, 1841, 
about six in the afternoon. The water was pretty 
smooth, but there was rather A strong head-wind, so that 
the time was longer thaa in the last Race, being 32 
minutes 30 seconds. The Oxford Boat was completely 
distanced, and came in about a minute after her adver- 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


William Croker, Caius. 
Hon. L. W. Denman, M agd. 
A M. Richie, ist Trin. 
John M. Ridley^ Jesus. 
R. H. Cobbold, St Peter's. 
F. C. Penrose*, Magd. 
Hon. G. Denman, ist Trin. 
Charles M. Vialls^ 3rd Trin. 

Coxswain, J. M. Croker, Caius. 


Richard Bethell, Exeter. 
E. Vaughan Richards, Ch. Ch. 
y. G, Mountain}^ Merton. 
E. Royds\ Brasenose. 
H. W. Hodgson, Balliol. 
William Lea, Brasenose. 
Godfrey Meynell^^ Brasenose. 
John Somers CocksS Brasenose. 

Coxswain, C. B. Woolaston, Exeter. 

^ Rowed in r840 also. 





L ife-rate of the Crews. " 

These Crews seem to have been composed of a 
sound constitutioned set of men. I have estimated the 
duration of their collective lives at 664 years after the 
Race, and their individual lives at about 42 instead of 40 
years. Three men died early, one the year after the 
Race, and the others in 1856 and 1858. 

Effects of Training and Rowing on the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

4 12 

Extracts from tlie letters of the surviving members of the 

Cambridge Crew, 

"With regard to rowing, there is no doubt it is a 
most healthy exercise in itself, and it is a very good one 
for gentlemen^ who are too apt to be indolent, not being 
obliged to work. The racing in boats perhaps is the 
only means of keeping young men to regular hours of 
rowing. Of course every thing of this nature may be 
abused, and is abused ; but on the whole, I believe that 
boat-racing at the Universities does good in keeping 
young men out of mischief, and keeping them to regular 
hours of exercise. And from all the enquiries I have 
made, as well as from my own knowledge, the accounts 
that are circulated as to the fatal effects of boat-racing 
are very grossly exaggerated. 

«L. W. Denman." 

Henley on Thames, Juncy 1869. 


''Personally I never felt any inconvenience from 

rowing, but I cannot say how far it may have affected 

my constitution ; I never heard any of my friends say 

that they thought rowing had done them any harm. 

Our Boat at St Peter's was head of the river. I only 

know of the death of one of the crew, and that did not 

appear to be connected in any way with the exertion of 


•'R. H. COBBOLD." 
Broseley, Juney 1869. 

"As for myself, I rowed in loi races of all kinds, of 
which I lost 13. I think there can be no doubt that I 
thereby turned myself from a weak weedy boy into a 
tolerably athletic young man. * * ♦ On the whole, I 
think it all depends upon the man, but take the average 
young Englishman of public schools, I believe far more 
of them are improved in health than damaged by taking 
to the water, and that those who have derived the most 
benefit have been those who have rowed in the University 

"G. Denman." 

London, June, 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of the friends and relatives of 

tlie dead, 

*' William Croker died at the University in 1841 of 
typhus fever. 

'* W, Croker, died, I believe, from a cause quite in- 
dependent of rowing. 

**He never suffered from rowing." 


Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of the 

Oxford Crew, 

"I think I may say I have in one way or other done as 
much as any other man, in excessive exercise, wet and dry. 
* * * But for my opinion as to your question, I do not 
consider that a sound boy or man will materially affect 
his life by the training and exertion necessarily under- 
gone for the University Boat-Race. 

*' Richard Bethell/* 

New Zealand, February ^ 1873. 

"I rowed in the Oxford Crew in the spring of 1841, 
being at that time 19 years and five months old; I grew 
to my full height before I was 17 years old; I was five 
feet eight inches, stout built, and remarkably large round 
the chest, though short in the arms and legs. I was 
a remarkably strong boy. * * * I was educated at 
Westminster, and was Stroke of the Boat there before 
going to Oxford, and was thoroughly used to rowing 
hard. I could train well, and was in excellent condition 
when I rowed the University Match. I cannot trace 
any evil effects to my health in after life due to rowing ; 
but I consider my build and constitution peculiarly well 
adapted to the piurpose of rowing ; and I never would con- 
sent to any young man of slender build, or who had not 
done growing (which I consider a prime point), rowing in 
an important match, if I had power to prevent him. Much 
evil arises, in my opinion, from want of care in training, 
and in supposing that a system which suits one man 
is necessarily the best for another. I have heard of some 
of my contemporaries falling ill and dying, and have 


Jieard such disasters attributed to rowing; but I cannot, 
of my own knowledge, give you any information about 
anybody but myself. If I had a son who wished to row 
in the University, I should consider, 

" 1st. Has he ceased to grow ? 

" 2nd. Is he muscular and of large chest capacity? 

" 3rd. Will he stand training well ? 

"E. Vaughan Richards." 

London, June, 1869. 

*'I underwent a most severe apprenticeship at West- 
minster School ; when training for the race with Eton, 
we frequently rowed at racing speed from Westminster 
to Battersea and back in the morning, and from West- 
minster to Putney and back in the evening, 18 miles in 
all ; but I do not know that any of us were the worse 
for it. My father says that I looked like a greyhound 
in those days, and he would tell you that I was the 
worse for it, but I tell him I never sent him in a doctor's 
bill. I was at it all the time I was at the University, 
in my College Crew, in four-oars, and in pair-oars, but I 
am still in excellent force, and should be in still better 
if in training. 

"H. W. Hodgson." 

Baldock, May^ 1869. 

"I was one of the Oxford Eight in 184 1. * * * I do 
not think that my health suffered in any way from the 
training and exertion of the University Race. For 
some years after that time I was as well as ever. ♦ * * 
I do not think that men of average constitutions and 
3ound organs would suffer from the Boat-Race, but I 


think it would be injurious if any organs such as the 
heart or lungs were unsound. It might not be a bad 
plan to suggest a medical certificate of soundness before 
a man was admitted to the University Crew. 

"William Lea." 

Droitwich, May^ 1869. 


"The University Race of 1842 resulted in the first 
victory gained by Oxford on the London waters (the 
Race of 1829 having been rowed at Henley). Both 
crews were in first-rate condition, but the Race was 
shorn of much of its interest by the inexcusable conduct 
of a steamer which got right in the way of the Cam- 
bridge Boat, not only throwing her out of her course, 
but subjecting her to its swell for a considerable distance, 
and thereby depriving her of all chance of making a 
good fight. The Oxford Crew brought in their Boat 
some 13 seconds ahead of their opponents. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


J. F. McDougall, Magd. Hall. 
Robert Menzies, Univ. 
Edw. A. Breedon, Trinity. 
W. B. Brewster y St John's. 
G. D. Bourne, Oriel. 
J. C. Cox, Trinity. 
George E. Hughes, Oriel. 
F. N. Menzies, Univ. 

Coxswain, Arthur Shadwell, Balliol. 



Ernest Tower, St John's. 

Hon. L. W. Denman \ Magd. 

W. Watson, Jesus. 

F. C. Penrose ", Magd. 

R. H. Cobbold \ St Peter's. 

y, RoydSy Christ's. 

Hon. G. Denman*, ist Trin. 

John M. Ridley ', Jesus. 

Coxswain, A. B. Pollock, Trin. . 

L ife-rate of the Crews, 

The lives of these men may be considered good 
ones. My estimate of their collective after-life amounts 
to 687 instead of 640 years, while the individual Oars- 
men may on an average be expected to live for 43 in- 
stead of 40 years after the Race. Three of the rowers 
who died prematurely, lived between them 50 years 
after they rowed. One of them died in 1847, o^^ ^^ 1864, 
and one in 1865. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

9 7 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of the 

Oxford Crew. 

" I rowed in the Oxford and Cambridge Match of 
1842 as Bow. I believe that in my own case rowing 

^ Rowed also in 1841. » Rowed both in 1840 and 1841. 


has strengthened me to go through hard and trying 
work on the Equator for 20 years, and to be, as I am, 
the only survivor of all my contemporaries in it, but 
none of them were rowing men. I can pull a stout oar 
yet on our quiet Ouse, and hope, please God, to be able 
to do so for years to come. 



" I am sure rowing never did me any harm, either at 
the time or afterwards,- and I think the training we 
rowing men undergo, who go in for being public Oars- 
men, in most cases does a great deal of good, and at all 
events keeps the rowing men out of worse mischief. Of 
the seven-oar Oxford Crew that pulled at Henley in 
1843 «ill ^re now alive and healthy, except one, who 
died of the effects of a malaria fever caught at the Cape 
of Good Hope. * * * The others of this Crew met at 
Oxford last year, and shewed no signs of any harm 
from their exertions there 25 years previously, but were 
all sound and well. I think if a young man is sound and 
has not any constitutional weakness, rowing will in- 
vigorate his system and have a very good effect on his 
bodily health in after years, and at all events it agreed 
well with me and the crews I rowed with. 

"Robert Menzies." 

Aberfeldy, Mayt 1869. 

*' In reply to your letter on the subject of rowing 
and its effects on myself individually, I am happy to be 
able to state that I was never in better health than 


when I was in training for a race, and that as I have 
been perfectly well ever since that period, I think I am 
justified in supposing, that in my c^se at all events, that 
noble pursuit has not been productive of injury in any 
manner whatever. 

" Edwd. a. Breedon." 

London, May^ 187 1. 


"As regards myself I began to row at 14 years of 
age, and I have taken a part in seventeen public races, 
such as Eton and Westminster, Eton and Guards, Eton 
and Leander, Thames, Henley, Oxford and Cambridge, 
etc., besides College Races, and I am thankful to say 
that now I am as well as ever I was. Of the Crew that 
rowed in the Oxford and Cambridge Race in 1842, the 
last that was rowed from Westminster to Putney, all 
but one are living and hearty. We met last year at 
Oxford, and some letters having appeared in the papers 
respecting the injury done to the constitution by this 
exercise, the subject was discussed ; and we were all of 
opinion that rowing, so far from being injurious, was 
beneficial. * * * My own only son derived great 
benefit from the exercise of rowing, and I would en- 
courage it in every way. 

" G. D. Bourne." 

Broadway, May^ 1869. 

" I rowed 5 years in my College boat, 2 years at 
Henley Regatta, i year against Cambridge from West- 
minster to Putney, and i year against the Leander at 


the Thames Regatta. I was not, when I began to row, 

strong for my size and weight, and I believe that rowing 

and training, and all the rest of it, did me not only no 

harm but a vast deal of good. I am in perfectly good 

health now. * * * Depend upon it rowing will always 

do a man more good than harm. 

"J. C.COX." 
Chelmsford, yune^ 187 1. 

" I rowed in the O. U. Boat in 1842 and 1843, and 
am in my soth year. * ♦ * I enjoy very good health, 
I can walk all day with my gun or ride all day after the 
hounds without feeling knocked up, and I am con- 
stantly in the habit of taking hard exercise, such as 
planting and felling trees, of which I am very fond. * * * 
I think therefore that I may conclude that rowing has 
not been prejudicial in my case. 

"George E. Hughes V 

Luton, Aprils 1871. 

" I was Captain of the Oxford University Crew for two 
years and rowed stroke oar, pulled the last race that was 
rowed over the old course from Westminster Bridge to 
Putney, in which Oxford was victorious. I rowed five years 
at Oxford, one year 3 in a four-oar, one year 7 in the 
University College Eight, and three years stroke of 
Univ. Coll. Eight, and Head of the River the last two 
years. I am now 52 years old, and I suffer no bad 
effects. I had my life insured two years ago, and had 
to be examined by one of the first medical men in 
Edinburgh, who passed me as a first-class life. * * ♦ 

^ Mr Hughes died May and, 1872, of acute inflammation of the lungs. 
U. O. 12 


I am sure rowing makes muscle and improves the 

« F. N. Menzies ." 

Edinburgh, April, 1871. 

Extracts from the letters of the friends and relatives 

of the dead. 

" W. B. Brewster died July 7, 1864, but his death 
could in no way be attributed to rowing ; he was a very 
tall man, 6 feet 4, and of all the men in the Crew I had 
most doubt of him when he was chosen ; but the exer- 
cise did him good and made him a stronger man. He 
got fever in Africa when on service in the Rifles, and 
retired in consequence of the effects of it." 

" He died of the effects of a malaria fever caught 
at the Cape of Good Hope, under which his health 
gave way, and he ultimately died in this country." 

" He met his death from a cold caught by returning 
wet from a Brighton Volunteer Review ; he being Colo- 
nel of the Inns of Court Battalion, and having gone 
through severe work at the Cape in the Rifle Brigade." 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of 

the Cambridge Crew, 

"I have much pleasure in replying to your note, 
and without hesitation declare that the training and 
exertion in rowing were no injury to me; on the con- 
trary, they were exceedingly useful in keeping me in 
excellent health during the whole of my Cambridge 


time ; if my sons grow up and reach Cambridge, I shall 
certainly recommend them rowing in preference to other 
athletic sports. I really could not give you, if I were 
to rack my brain for a week, a single instance of a man 
who suffered from rowing in my day. 

*' Ernest Tower." 

Hinckley, June^ 1869. 

" W. Watson died of influenza in 1847." 
He never suffered from his rowing exertions. 

^^John Royds died June 1865, aged 46. I never 
heard that he was, or considered himself any the worse, 
for rowing; he grew very stout, and, farming largely, 
over-exerted himself very much one day in driving some 
trespassing cattle out of a corn-field. He died after a 
year or two's suffering, from severe heart disease." 


The University Race of 1845 took place at an un- 
usually late hour on Saturday the 15th of March, 1845. 
The weather was freezingly cold and the water lumpy, 
but the bitter wind was somewhat in favour of the rival 
Crews. This was the first year in which the Race was 
rowed over the present course. 

The Cambridge Boat drew slowly ahead, and finally 
won by 30 seconds; time, 23 minutes 30 seconds. 

12 — 2 


The names of the Crews were as follows: 


Gerard Mann^ Caius. 

W. HarknesSy St John's. 

W. S. Lockharty Christ's. 

W^ P^ Cloves y 1st Trin. 
F. M. Arnold, Caius. 
Robert Harkness, St John's. 
J. Richardson, 1st Trin. 
C. G. Hill, 2nd Trin. 

Coxswain, H. Munster, 1st Trin. 


Mark Haggard, Ch. Ch. 

W. Chetwynd Stapylton, Merton. 

William H. Milman, Ch. Ch. 

Henry Lewis, Pembroke. 

W. Buckle, Oriel. 

F. C. Royds, Brasenose. 

F. Maitland Wilson, Ch. Ch. 

F. E. Tuke, Brasenose. 

Coxswain, F. J. Richards, Merton. 

Life-rate of the Crews. 

Collectively, the lives of these sixteen Oarsmen will 
not, according to my calculations, extend over more 
than 561 instead of 640 years after the Race; while 
their individual life-rate will be only 35 years. Hence, 
in the aggregate, the rowers will probably live 79 years 
less than ordinarily healthy men, each man on an ave- 
rage falling short of his tale of days by some five years. 
Four of the Cambridge ipen died before 1869, only 
living on an average some 9 years after the Race. One 
of the Oxford Crew died in 1854. 


Effects of Training and Rowing upon tlie Ctews^ 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

2 lO 4 

Extracts from the tetters of the surviving members of tlie 

Cambridge Crew, 

*'In 1844 I went through all the training, the most 
severe part of the work, more trying even than the Race 
itself, though in the end Oxford refused our challenge ; 
in 1845 I rowed number five, when we were victors. I 
rowed in four or five other University Grews. * * * As 
to myself, I am in perfectly good health. A few years 
ago I was most carefully examined for an hour or more, 
and the verdict was that my heart was as sound • as any 
man's, and that I might freely indulge (I was about to 
start for my favourite ground for walking, the Pyrenees) 
in any mountain climbing whatever. 

'^F. M. Arnold." 

Kingston-on-Thames, yyne^ 1869^ 

"As an old Captain of the Cambridge University 
Boat Club, and Lady Margaret B. C, I was much 
mixed up with boating nuen, some twenty-two years 
ago. * ♦ * 

"I believe that I myself rowed as much as most men 
could short of excess. I rowed twice in the University 
Boat-Race, but I did not row for more than two years, 
being prevented at first by an accident, and afterwards 
by a conviction that I could not stand too much of such 
severe exercise. I do not consider my rowing injured 
my health. 

"Robert Harkness." 

Salisbury, June^ 1869. 


"I am thankful to say that so far as I know I am in 
perfect health at the present time ; that I was so all the 
time I rowed, and I have rowed in several severe races, 
in some of which I have been beaten, in others successful, 
and that I never suffered either from training or rowing. 
I write this without the slightest knowledge of your 
intentions, whether to gain information in favour of or 
against the Inter-University Boat-Race; I simply state 
things as they are and were. 

"J. Richardson." 

Bedford, Aprils 187 1. 

I commenced rowing at Cambridge in 1842, knew a 
great many of the hardest rowing men of my time, both 
at Oxford and Cambridge, and cannot say that I can 
see that any marked injury is common to their lot, now 
that thirty years have passed. * * * I rowed stroke-oar 
both in College and University Races, without suffering 
any inconvenience, and with uniform success, ending my 
boating days with the Inter-University Race of 1846. 

Wa&boys, Dec, 1871. **C. G. Hill." 

Extracts from the letters of the friends and relatives 

of the dead, 

"My old friend Gerard Mann 6X^6. from erysipelas 
driven to the head from bathing, as was his daily custom, 
in a cold bath in the middle of winter, when he had 
got erysipelas." 

" Gerard Mann died October 1855, aged 33. He 
never suffered from rowing in any way whatsoever." 

" W. Harkness died in 1863." 


" Walter Scott Lockhart {Scott) after rowing in the 
Race alluded to, went into the army (i6th Lancers 
being his regiment), and died in 1851 at the age of 26. 
He was a remarkably handsome fellow, the grandson 
of Sir Walter Scott, and succeeded to Abbotsford, 
assuming the name of Scott on the death of his uncle, 
the second Sir Walter. 

" Uninjured by rowing." 

W. P. Cloves. "Was known to be consumptive 
when he rowed ; he was muscularly strong, and it was 
the general feeling that his rowing had by no means 
shortened his life." 

"You may have heard of Cloves, Captain of the 1st 
Trin., who rowed against Oxford in 1845. He was about 
the strongest man in Cambridge, and won the sculls, 
but he died of consumption soon after he left the 

" W. P. Cloves rowed in the University Crew of 
184s, and trained that year both for spring and summer 
crew; in 1846 also he trained and rowed in the spring. 
After this his health broke down, and he died, I 
think, in Madeira not long after." 

" W. P. Cloves died Sept. 25, 1849." 

Extracts front the letters of the surviving members of the 

Oxford Crew. 

" I rowed in the Eton Eight for two years, and in 
the O. U. B. C. Eight and Four for three years, and am 
not aware that my health or constitution have in any 
degree suffered. 

"W. Chetwynd Stapylton." 

Kingston, May^ 1869. 



"I have never suffered the slightest inconvenience 
from my rowing exertions in any way, and few have 
rowed more than I have. An Eton and Westminster 
Race, Christchurch Boat for four or five years ; two 
University Races ; Thames and Henley Regattas several 
seasons, especially the latter, where on one occasion 
I rowed in two eight-oared races, two four-oared, the 
pairs, and wound up by winning the scratch Eights. 

"W. H. MlLMAN." 
London, Api/, 1871. 

" So far as my own health is concerned, I do not 
think there has been any injury. * * * I have not 
known personally of any case of injury from boating 
which I could supply without a very reasonable doubt 
of its being genuine. 

"Henry Lewis." 

Stowmarket, May, 1869. 

"I rowed in the Oxford University Boat for part 
of three years, and during the time I was in training 
and afterwards I never had a day's illness which I could 
attribute to it. I rowed 13 st. S lbs., and always rather 
gained in weight when training than lost; indeed I 
believe that the regular life and hours necessary in 
training were useful to me in more ways than bodily 
health. * * * I am not aware that any of my contempo- 
raries were injured by rowing. * * * I rowed several 
hard races, but never was so much * done up ' as I was 
in the College Boat, still I never was the worse for it. 

" W. Buckle." 

Ledbury, MarcA, 187 1. 



" As far as I am concerned myself, I have always 
enjoyed and still enjoy excellent health. I have no 
reason to suppose that I am any way the worse for rowing. 
I have two brothers who were also University Oarsmen, 
one older, and one younger than myself, and they would 
both give the same account of themselves. 

"F. C ROYDS." 
Chester, May^ 1869. 

" I rowed two years in the Eton Boat against West- 
minster, and three more in the Oxford University Boat, 
at all the regattas (only one Race with Cambridge), 
and am not aware of any ill effects. 

''F. Maitland Wilson." 

Bury St Edmunds, AprU^ 1871. 

'* As an Eton boy I was Captain of the Boats, and 
rowed in two Races against Westminster, in 1842 and 
1843. I went up to Oxford after the Long Vacation in 

1843, rowed in the College Races in the summer of 

1844, and was appointed President of our University 
Boat Club. At the end of this term Oxford met Cam- 
bridge University and Leander, at the Thames Regatta 
8-Oar Race, when we were victorious. I rowed stroke. 
I rowed the following week in a University Four-Oar 
Race, at Henley, winning ; also in a Race for the Eight- 
Oar Cup in an Oxford crew composed of old Etonians, 
winning this also. The next Easter (in 1845) I rowed 
against Cambridge at Putney, and was beaten. 

" F. E. TUKE." 

SiTTINGBOURNE, May^ 1869. 


^^ Mark Haggard died of consumption on his way 
home from Madeira in the year 1854." 


This Race came off upon Friday the 3rd of April, and . 
was rowed from Mortlake to Putney, the day being very 
fine. The Race was one of the closest upon record, and 
with the exception of the 1868 and 1869 Matches, was 
rowed in a shorter space of time than any other, namely 
21 minutes 5 seconds. The Crews were in capital condi- 
tion, and unusual interest was aroused by the fact that 
on this occasion outriggers were used for the first time in 
a University Race. The lead was gallantly contested 
for many minutes, but Cambridge at last distanced her 
rival, and succeeded in passing the winning flag some 
two lengths ahead — wind and tide were favourable, and 
the water calm. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


George Francis Murdoch, St John's. 
G. F. Holroyd, ist Trin. 
Stephen T. Clissold, 3rd Trin. 
W.P. Cloves', 1st Trin. 
Edmond Wilder, Magd. 
Robert Harkness*, St John's. 
Edwd. P. Wolstenholme, ist Trin. 
C. G. HilP, 2nd Trin. 

Coxswain, T. B. Lloyd, Lady Margaret. 

4 Rowed also in 1845. 



H. S, Polehatnpton, Pembroke. 
E. C. Burton, Ch. Ch. 
W. U. Heygate, Merton. 

E. H. Penfold, St John's. 

J. William Conant, St John's. 

F. C. Royds\ Brasenose. 

W. Chetwynd Stapylton *, Merton. 
W. H. Milman^ Ch. Ch. 

Coxswain, C. J. Soanes, St John's. 

Life-rate of the Crews. 

The aggregate longevity of these i6 men is mate- 
rially lowered by the early deaths of three of their 
number, one of whom perished in the Indian mutiny. 
Collectively their allowance of life will not exceed 613 
years instead of 640, while their individual lives may 
be estimated at 38*3 instead of 40 years after the Race. 
Two of the Cambridge men died 3 years after they 
rowed, 37 years before their time. One of the Oxford 
men only lived till the year 1857. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

1 13 2 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of the 

Cambridge Crew. 

*' In reply to your letter respecting my rowing ex- 
periences, I think I may say that I was benefited in my 

^ Rowed also in 1845. ; 


health by rowing rather than otherwise. I think that I 
must have strong lungs/ as I can and always could as- 
cend steep ascents rapidly without difficulty. My gene- 
ral health too is always better when I am taking hard 

'* G. F. HOLROYD." 

Lymington, July^ 1871. 

*' In answer to your enquries, I have great pleasure 
in assuring you that I never suffered the slightest incon- 
venience from rowing in the Inter-University Races. 
I have seen in America and Australia several old Uni- 
versity Oarsmen within the last few years, and in no 
instance did I hear of any of them having suffered in 
any way from rowing. 

" Stephen T. Clissold." 

SouTHSEA, Aprils 1871. 

" As regards the particular enquiry which you have 
submitted to me, viz. whether in my opinion the train- 
ing and exertion demanded of men who take part in the 
Oxford and Cambridge Boat- Race are of so trying a 
character that the constitution is liable to be perma- 
nently injured, I should say, speaking from an experi- 
ence of nearly thirty years, that neither the training nor 
the exertion are calculated to have that effect. 

" Edmond Wilder." 

Emsworth, Jurut 1869. 

" I have myself derived great benefit from rowing ; 
and, though now 45, keep it up as far as my engagements 


will allow, and still find the benefit of it. Of course I 
have long given up racing. * * * When a man is sound 
in constitution, and rows properly, with ordinary care 
and training, he will not injure his constitution, he will 
improve it — ^that has happened with myself. 

" Edwd. p. Wolstenholme." 

London, June^ 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of friefids of the dead. 

" G. F. Murdoch died of decline in the year 1849." 
" In my opinion rowing never did him any harm." 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of the 

Oxford Crew. 

" I do not consider my health was at all injured by 
Boat-Racing, and perhaps for five years I did as much or 
more of it, than most of my contemporaries. I was 
trained twice for the Westminster Crew in our Match 
against Eton, and at Oxford in every term for four suc- 
cessive years. The o'nly thing I suffered from was 
indigestion after it was all over and I came to reside 
quietly at home. I attributed it to the sudden change, 
or rather the want of that excitement I had gone 
through, but it passed off in about a twelvemonth, and 
I have never had really a day's illness in my life. * ♦ ♦ 
I rowed upwards of 50 Boat-Races, including the Cham- 
pion Sculler's Cup at the Thames Regatta, and the 
Sculls at Oxford (both of which I won), and was only 
beaten three times. 

" E. C. Burton." 

Dayentrt, yun^f 1869. 


■* • 

" For myself I can only say that I rowed in every 

kind of race for six years at Eton and three-and-a-half 

years at Oxford, and have certainly suffered in no way 

from it 

" W. U. Heygate." 
Loughborough, May, 1869I 

"I have much pleasure in replying to the questions 
contained in your letter. I have no reason to suppose 
that the frequent Boat-Races in which I was engaged in 
my earlier years have proved in any way injurious to my 
health; nor can I call to mind any one of a very numerous 
boating acquaintance whom I believe to have been 
permanently injured by his exertions on the river. I 
have lived the greater part of my life on the banks of 
the Thames; from the time that I first went to Eton 
(1836) until I left Oxford (in 1847), I was constantly 
working in a racing boat. Even now, although the 
activity of youth has left me, and I have no longer the 
zest for racing, my powers of endurance are hardly 
diminished, and I not unfrequently row 30 miles or 
more in a day. So much for my personal experience. 

"J- William Conant." 

SURBITON, April, 1871. 

Extracts from the published Memoir of the Rev, H. S. 


^'^ Henry Stedman Polehampton was always of a pecu- 
liarly fearless, honest nature, much liked by his com- 
panions, and attached to those manly sports of swimming, 
boating, and cricketing, for which Eton is famed; he 


became a stout swimmer, a good 'Oar/ and before he 
left Eton was the first choice out of the 'Eleven;' in 
which, on one occasion, he played in the Public School 
Matches at Lord's. When at Oxford in 1845, at con- 
siderable risk he saved a man from drowning, and re- 
ceived in consequence the silver medal of the Royal 
Humane Society {pb civem servatum). The uniform 
success of his College Boat during his Captaincy proved 
^t once his energy and his influence over men. In 1846 
he was chosen to row in the University Boat in the 
Match with Cambridge; the latter being the winners of 
a well-contested race. After he took orders, it is said 
that *his preaching, as well as his visitation of the sick 
in the time of the cholera in 1849, will ever be re- 
membered in St Chad's.' He afterwards obtained a 
chaplaincy in India, but in November 1855, before he 
left this country, he went in for a 'scratch' race at Oxford, 
when his Boat came in second, and he won a pint pewter, 
which he much prized, and took with him to India. 
He there rowed a good deal, besides being a most de- 
voted pastor of his flock; but during the summer of 1856 
had a most dangerous fever brought on by his incessant 
and unwearied care of the men of the 52nd" regiment 
during a severe visitation of cholera. On the 8th July, 
1857, he was shot through the body at Lucknow, and 
soon afterwards succumbed to an attack of cholera which 
carried him off" on the 20th July, 1857." 

"Rowing never hurt him in any way." 



This Race took place on Thursday the 29th of 
March. The day was cold and showery; after a severe 
struggle Cambridge drew ahead, and kept the lead easily, 
reaching Mortlake exactly 22 minutes after the start was 
effected at Putney. The Oxford men laboured under 
some disadvantage in their boat, which was heavier and 
less springy than that of their opponents ; but they made 
a most chivalrous effort to gain the victory, and rowed 
with indomitable pluck. 

The names of the Crews were as follows: 


H. Probyy 2nd Trin. 
W, J, H, Jones, 2nd Trin. 
A. de Rutzen, 3rd Trin. 
Charles James Holden, 3rd Trin. 
W. L, G, Bagshawe, 3rd Trin. 
W. H. Waddington, 2nd Trin. 
W. C. Hodgson, ist Trin. 
J. Copley Wray, 2nd Trin. 

Coxswain, George Booth, ist Trin. 


David Wauchope, Wadham. 
J. W. Chitty, Balliol. 
Henry H. Tremayne, Ch. Ch. 
E. C. Burton S Ch. Ch. 

^ Rowed also in the Race of 1846. 

UNIVERSITY oars: !93 

Charles H* Steward, Oriel. 
Arthur Mansfield, Ch. Ch. 
Edward Sykes, Worcester. 
W. Gordon Rich, Ch. Ch. 

Coxswain, C. Soanes, St John's. 

Life-rate of the Crews, 

The death-rate among the' Cambridge men who 
rowed in this Race has been very heavy. Four of them 
died early, two from accidental causes, one being killed 
by poachers and the other drowned. Hence, the cal- 
culated life-rate of the two Crews cannot be set down 
at more than 584 instead of 640 years after the Race. 
The individual lives, therefore, must be estimated at 36*5 
instead of 40 years. 

Effects of Training and Rowing on the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 
5 10 I 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of 

the Cambridge Crew. 

''I rowed two races against Oxford over the London 

course before I was 20 years of age ; my experience both 

before and after those Races, in training, has been very 

considerable, and I do not think that I ever suffered in 

any way from the effects of it. 

London, yune, 1869. 

u. o. 13 


"I am, as you suppose, one of the Crew that rowed 
in the Oxford and Cambridge Race at Easter, 1849; I 
was at Triiiity College, Cambridge, at the time. I always 
trained carefully for the Races, and never experienced the 
slightest inconvenience from the violent exertion; my 
health has ever since been singularly robust, and I long 
travelled in the East under circumstances of great fatigue 
and hardship, without a day's illness. ♦ * * A man of 
sound constitution has nothing to fear, provided . he un- 
dergoes a proper course of training and adheres to it 
strictly ; on the contrary, the training will often harden 
and improve his constitution permanently; such has 
been the case with myself after four years of continual 
boating and frequent training. 

"W. H. Waddington." 
AisNE, France, Jufyy 1869. 

"I am glad to answer your enquiries respecting the 
effect of rowing. I went up to Trinity, Cambridge, in 
October, 1846. I began rowing directly, and soon got 
into the First Trinity Eight at the head of the river, 
and as 7, or stroke, took my part in keeping the Boat 
in its place for nearly three years. As stroke I had 
some very severe races; in March, 1849, I rowed at 
Putney, our Crew was a very good one, and our time 
over the course was a quick one. In December, 1849, I 
rowed again at Putney, the second race in one year ; our 
Crew was almost the same as in the beginning of the 
year. We were said to have fouled at Hammersmith 
bridge, and though we rowed in first by some distance, we 
lost the Race. The exertion of this Race was not as great 
as the other. In the winter of 1849, in addition to this 
Race, I was stroke to the istTrin. Four-oar, and we won 


after as hard a Race as I ever rowed. I was in also 
for the Sculls and the Pair-oars. I tell you these things 
to shew I rowed almost as much as any man, and after 
20 years I can say I have scarcely ever had any illness 
save a very severe attack of small-pox. Three or four 
years ago I thought I was threatened with heart disease ; 
I went to ' , and he told me I was as strong as a 
horse. So I think I can say very hard rowing has never 
hurt me, and, as far as I can recollect, it has done very 
little harm to those who rowed in my time. 

" W. C. Hodgson." 


" I rowed twice as stroke in the Oxford and Cam- 
bridge Boat-Race, and in many other races over shorter 
courses. I can certainly say as regards myself that I 
never experienced the smallest ill effects from rowing, or 
rather racing. On the contrary, I think it improved the 
strength of my constitution, as well as my muscular 
strength. ♦ ♦ ♦ I could give you a long list of names 
of men, my own contemporaries,, none of whom have 
been in any way injured. 

"J. Copley Wray.*' 

London, June, 1869. 

Extracts from tlu letters of friends and relations of the 


H. Proby. " Was drowned in Australia many years 


13— 2 


" Proby died in the year 1852 ; drowned while swihi- 
ming a young horse across a river in Australia* He 
was a wiry man, about 5 feet 8 in height, and I think 
about 10 St. 6 lbs. in weight. There never was any- 
thing the matter with him." 

" W, y. H. Jones died of fever in the year 1857 in 
the Barbadoes, where he was minister of St Alban's and 
St Silas." 

" Rowing never hurt him in any way." 
" He was as game an Oar as ever lived." 

Charles James Holden died of a chest affection, May 
26th, 1862. 

W, L, G. Bagsliawe " was killed niany years ago in 
an affray with poachers." 

'* Murdered on the 24th July, 1854, by poachers." 
" I do not believe that Bagskawe, as good an Oar as 
I ever saw, was a bit the worse for his exertions ; he 
was killed by poachers about 15 years ago." 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew. 

" I rowed in the Putney and Mortlake Race in the 
year 1849, and I do not think that I received the slight- 
est permanent injury either from the training or from the 
race. * * * I do not know that any of our men have suf- 
fered ; several of them I know to be strong men now ; 
and I may add that in the i^ame year I rowed stroke to 
my own College Boat (Wadham), against the first Cam- 
bridge Boat at Henley, beating them, though half their 


Crew were University Oars ; and I think I may safely say 
that every one of that Crew is alive and well, with the 
exception of one who was killed in California. A curious 
circumstance with regard to training I would mention, and 
that is that one of the most sinewy and lasting men of 
my friends, who had been accustomed to rowing since he 
was little more than a child, and who was a particularly 
steady and temperate man, and so good an Oar as to be 
chosen stroke for a time, never could stand training. 
After a few days of it he invariably broke down, and 
therefore never rowed in a race. 

"David Wauchope." 

Rugby, May^ 1869. 

"In answer to your questions, I may state that 
during my residence at Oxford I rowed in the Uni- 
versity Eight against Cambridge three times at Putney, 
and once at Henley. I also rowed in the University 
Four, and in Pair-Oar Races at Oxford, Henley and 
the Thames Regatta. My own personal experience ex- 
tends over a period of about five years, during a great 
part of which I was rowing in races. I am not aware 
that I have in any way suffered in health, either from 
the training or the rowing ; on the contrary, my belief 
is that I derived from them great benefit physically. 

"Joseph W. Chitty." 

London, May, 1873. 

"I rowed in the University Race from Putney to 
Mortlake in the spring of 1849, and in the Eton and 
Westminster Race from Barker's Rail to Putney in 
1S47; as regards mjiself^ which is the only piece of 


evidence worth having that I can give you, I can only 
say that neither at the time nor since am I aware of 
being any the worse for the training, or either Race. 

"Henry H. Tremayne/' 

ExMOUTH, June^ 1869. 

" I do not think that rowing is more dangerous to 
health than other athletic exercises. Probably if the 
trapeze or other more violent exercises had been in- 
vented in the last century, they would have also shared 
the reputation of some of the breakdowns attributed 
solely to rowing; at the same time I may as well 
observe, that as far as my own personal knowledge goes, 
these latter amount to actually nothing. I still know 
and occasionally see many of my contemporary Oars- 
men ; they are apparently in good health and strength, 
and never complain of having done themselves harm 
by rowing. 

"Charles H. Steward." 

Tewkesbury, May^ 1869. 

" I rowed a great many races myself. In my 20th 
year, before I went up to Oxford, I rowed two races at 
Bristol Regatta. I rowed three years in the College 
(Ch. Ch.) Boat, pulling No. 4 and 5 oar ; also in the Four- 
Oars once, and in the Pair-Oars once. I rowed one 
vacation at Worcester Regatta, and I rowed one year at 
Henley for the Ladies' Cup in the Christchurch Boat» 
and for the Grand Challenge in the University; and 
another year in the Oxford and Cambridge Race at 
Putney, pulling No. 6 oar both times. I am now in my 


43 rd year, stout and hearty, with nothing that, I know 
of the matter with me." 

"Arthur Mansfield." 

Shirehampton, May^ 1869. 

" In answer to your letter, I may safely say that my 
labours at the oar have in no way (to my knowledge) 
told prejudicially on my health. On the contrary, it 
is to my four years in the University Boat that I impute 
my after robust health, from the habit of training, 
and from the love of hard exercises for exercise sake I 
then acquired, 

''Edward Sykes." 

Reading, June^ 1871. 

" I rowed Races from the age of 16 to 23. Four of 
these over the London course besides many others at dif- 
ferent Regattas, and in all the College Races from 1847 
to 1852. I have never felt any ill effects either from 
training or rowing. Nor do I consider that it is in any 
way more injurious than any other athletic exercise. ♦ ♦ ♦ 
As regards long and short courses, the former I think 
more tiring, but the latter more exhausting. In the 
latter there is no .chance of developing the strength of 
a Qxe:w gradually y it must be done at once. 

" W. Gordon Rich." 

ToNBRIDGE, May^ 1 869. 



A second aquatic meeting took place between the 
two Universities in 1849, on the iSth December. 

The day wa6 most unpropitious, witfr a biting Tifead- 
wind and heavy showers of rain, and the water very 
rough. The Crews however were in first-rate conditibn^ 
and the 5tart was successfully accomplished about half- 
past three o'clock ; but unfortunately the interest of the 
Race was completely lost by the occurrence of a foul, 
which was given in favour of Oxford, though the Cam- 
bridge Boat led at the winning-post. This is the only 
occasion on which a University Boat-Race has been 
decided by a foul. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


J. J. Hornby, Brasenose. 
W. Houghton, Brasenose. 
James Wodehouse, Exeter. 
J. W. Chitty\Balliol. 
James Aitken, Exeter. 
Charles H. Steward*, Oriel. 
Edward Sykes\ Worcester. 
W.Gordon Rich\ Ch. Ch. 

Coxswain, R. W. Cotton, Ch. Ch. 


A. Baldry, ist Trin. 
Henry E. Pellew, 3rd Trin. 

^ Rowed also in March, 1849. 

1 • 




A. de Rutzen\ 3rd* Trin* 
Charles James Hvlden^^ 3rd Trin. 
W, L, G. Bagskawe^, 3rd Trin. 
Henry John Miller^ 3rd Trin. 
W. C. Hodgson \ ist Trin. 
J. Copley Wray^ and Trin. '- 

Coxswain, George Booths Trfn. 

• • ■ « 

Life-rate of the Crews. 

The lives of the 16 men who belonged to these two 
Boats may be set down at 629 years after the Race, or 
eleven less than their estimated expectation of life. One 
of the Oxford Crew and two of the Cambridge died 
before the year 1869. Two of these deaths were attri- 
butable to accidental causes, the health of the Oarsmen 
being in no way injured by their rowing labours. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

8 . 6 2 

. Extracts from the letters of the surviving Members 

of the Oxford Crew. 

" I rowed a great deal, between 50 and 60 Eight- 
oared Races (counting the College Races), and many 
Four-oar and Pair-oar Races. I rowed twice in a Uni- 
yersity Crew against Cambridge, once at Putney and 
once at Healey. I have never felt any ill-effects from 
it. On the contrary, I think I was considerably, 
strengthened by it. I have taken a great deal of very 

^ Rowed also in March, 1849. 


hard exercise in the Alps for some years, and I have 
had at times a g^eat deal of very hard Collie and 
School-work ; if I should break down under my present 
work (which I hope will not be the case), I should cer- 
tainly see no reason to attribute it in any degree to 
Boat-Racing in my earlier days. I take a row now when- 
ever I can get an opportunity. 

^ J. J. Hornby." 

Eton, May^ 1869. 

" The training and exertion of rowing Races, so far 
as I am concerned, have been attended with great bene- 
fit to the constitution. When I first went to Oxford 
in 1847, though I had always strong health I was a 
rather " weedy " sort of fellow ; rowing soon developed 
chest and shoulders, and made me a heavy muscular 
man. I have never suffered the least inconvenience 
from rowing, beyond of course the necessary temporary 
fatigue at the end of a four-mile Race ; my health since I 
left Oxford could not well be better. I frequently walk 
some 60 miles a week, and can do 20 miles a day with- 
out trouble. I do not think that any of the men with 
whom I rowed at Putney in 1849 and 1852 are at all 

the worse for the exertion. 

" W. Houghton." 

SaloPi May^ 1869. 

*' Your letter reached me at a most opportune time, 
as I was in company with my old friend Mr J. Chitty, 
and we at once discussed the subject of it together; .we 
bpth agreed that rowing and training had not done us the 
very slightest harm, and what is more, we could not 


remember any one of our old Oxford boating friends 
who had suffered from it. So far from considering 
training to be dangerous, I believe that most men would 
be infinitely the better for it. 

"James Aitken." 

Charleywood, May, 1869. 

Extract from the letter of a Friend. 

" James Wodehouse was one of my most intimate 
friends ; I was t^ilking about him only a fortnight ago to 
his cousin. He never suffered from rowing. Soon after 
taking Deacon's orders he went out to Australia ; there 
he passed through considerable hardship and bore it 
well; he came to England, and on his return voyage was 
lost in the '* London." I should think his case would 
not prove the slightest evil effects from hard rowing." 

The " London" foundered on the lOth of January, 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving Members 

of the Cambridge Crew, 

"Judging from an extensive knowledge (18 years 
ago) of rowing men, on the Thames as well as the Cam, 
I believe the sport innocuous to the majority who in- 
dulge in it 

''A. Baldry.'' 
Bournemouth, 1869. 

" I have pleasure in being able to state that nothing 
(in my opinion) contributed so much to my full develop- 
ment in body and mind, as the labour of the oar which 


fell to my share at the University. Although an Eton- 
ian I knew nothing about rowing until I went up to 
Trinity, and I rowed hard as Captain of my Boat (the 
3rd Trinity) which I took up to, and kept at the head 
of the river, * * * My frame was developed by train- 
ing and work in the Boat ; while I have been enabled in 
consequence to undergo great fatigue in travelling in 
South America and elsewhere. 

" Henry E. Pellew." 

' 'London, April, 1871. 

"I, can't at all say if my health would have been 
better now than it is, if I had never been engaged in 
any of the nun>erous Boat-Races which I rowed from the 
time I was 15 to say 21 years of age ; but I think I 
injured my digestion, and I always believed that a bad 
illness I had four years after I left College was partly 
caused by indigestion brought on by boating exertions. 
However, my health now is quite good, and I daresay 
I am not much the worse for it all ; I shouldn't wonder, 
if the truth could only be known, that Smoking would 
have quite as much to answer for as aquatic exertions. 

" Henry John Miller." 

Otago, New Zeai^and^ Aug, 30, 1871. 

tlNIVE^SITY oars: 205 


The University Race of 1852 was rowed upon Satur- 
day, the 3rd of April. Oxford proved victorious, her 
Crew this year being a singularly good one ; the Race 
was won by about six boat-lengths, or 27 seconds. 

Time: 21 minutes 36 seconds. The day was very- 
cold but pretty calm. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


K. Prescot, Brasenose. • 

Richard Greenall, Brasenose. 

Philip Henry Nind, Ch. Ch. 

Reginald J. BuUer, Balliol. 

Henry Denne, Univ. 

W. Houghton ^ Brasenose. 

W. O. Meade King, Pembroke. 

J. W. Chitty', Balliol. 

Coxswain, R. W. Cotton, Ch. Ch. 


E. Macnaghten, ist Trih. 
Henry Brandt, 2nd Tftn. 
H, E. Tuckey, St John's. 
H. B. Foordy 1st Trin. 
E. Hawley, Sidney. 
W. S. Longmore, Sidney. 
W. A. Norris, 3rd Trin. 
Fred. Wm. Johnson^ 3rd Trin. 
Coxswain, C, H. Crosse, Caius. 

I Rowed in December, i849. * Rowed twice in 1849. 


Life-rate of the Crews, 

The mortality among the Cambridge men who took 
part in this Race has been high. Hence the two Crews 
collectively cannot be expected to enjoy more than 608 
instead of 640 years ; while the lives of the individual 
Oarsmen will, on an average, be brought down from 40 
years to 38 after the Race ; one man dying three years 
after he pulled, another seven, and a third eleven. 
None of them, however, were injured by their rowing 

Ejfects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

5 II 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew. 

"I rowed constantly for five years at Oxford, and, as 
you say, took part in the Oxford and Cambridge Matches. 
I rowed in the Oxford Crew at Putney in 1852, in a 
University Eight and Four at Henley in 1853. I do not 
think that I have any grounds for saying my rowing did 
me any harm, and in many respects it did me much 
good. * * * I do not know any man of my standing 
who was injured by rowing. ♦ * * I have never heard 
of an Oxford man who was seriously injured by rowing. 

^'K. Prescot." 

PONTELAND, May^ 1 869. 

"I have great pleasure in giving you my experience 
and opinion on the important question, whether those 


who take part in the Oxford and Cambridge Boat-Race 
are liable to receive harm from the nature of the ex- 
ertions required in the training and race? I have put 
this question to myself frequently, and have always been 
able to make a satisfactory answer, as I have never felt 
any harm myself, nor have I heard of any of my con- 
temporaries being any the worse. I went up to Oxford 
not being able to row a stroke, yet during my career 
there I rowed something like 250 races. So continually 
was I employed, that to be out of training for a fortnight 
was a novelty and a treat. 

"Richard Greenall." 

Hawkshead, May^ 1869. 

"Since taking my degree in 1855 my constitution 
has been put to the test in many climates, for I have 
lived in Canada, on the west coast of America, and in 
Australia, and I can safely aver that I have never in 
trying circumstances found a failure of physical power ; 
and that when hard pressed by fatigue and want of 
food, the recollection of the endurance developed by 
rowing and other athletics gave me fresh spirit and 

"Philip Henry Nind." 

Queensland, June^ 1871. 

"My experience in training and rowing does not lead 
me to think that the exertion demanded of men engaged 
in the University Race is so trying, that in 'numerous* 
instances the constitutipn is liable to be permanently 
injured ; for I cannot call to mind a single instance of one 


208 trmVEkSITY OARS. 

*. ^ 

of my contemporaries suffering any ill effect from train- 
ing. I have lost sight of some of those who rowed with 
me (now 17 years ago), but I have never heard of any 
being injured by rowing. 

"Reginald J. Buller." 

HEYBRIDGEy May^ 1869. 

"I am very happy to be able to say that to the best 
of my belief rowing has in no way impaired my health 
or strength. I am in robust health, as active as in those 
days, and hardly have had a day's illness since that 
time. I have been examined with stethoscope two or 
three times, and have been passed quite sound. 

"Henry Denne." 

OSTENDE, May^ 1871. 

"I am not aware, and have no reason to believe, that 
I did myself any permanent injury by rowing. In my 
last year at Oxford, I was guilty of — ^what was at that 
time more than it is at present — an uncommon act of 
indiscretion — I allude to the practice of entering for 
several races at Henley or elsewhere, which entails the 
necessity of practising with two or more crews daily. I 
regard rowing as a most salutary exercise, though, of 
course, one may expect to suffer more or less from any 
excessive violent exercise. * •♦ ♦ I insured my life about 
two and a half years ago, and no objection was made to 
the state of any of my organs. 

"W. O. Meade King." 

Manchester, ^M.^w/, 1871. 



Extracts from the letters of the surviving members 

of the Cambridge Crew, 

" I never rowed until I went to Cambridge; when I 
was there I rowed I think as much as any one, and 
certainly ipy health did not suffer in the least in con- 
sequence; on the contrary, J think I was much the 
better for it 

LONDON. AM!. ,871. "E. MaCNAGHTEN." 

** I rowed in the University Boat at Henley, in the 
year 1851, when we entered for the Grand Challenge 
Cup, and were opposed by Oxford. On the same oc- 
casion I rowQd with my College Club (ist Trin.) for the 
Ladies' Plate, and also in a Four-oar Race for the 
Stewards' Cup. The following year I pulled in the 
Oxford and Cambridge Match from Putney to Mortlake. 
I rowed in all the College Boat-Races during the three 
years I was at Cambridge; I therefore saw as much of 
the system as most men. * ♦ * The only time I ever 
felt shaky after a race, was at Henley, when one of our 
crew broke his rowlock a quarter of a mile after starting, 
and we pulled the rest of the course with three oars only 
on the bow-side ; when we came in I was weak in the 
. legs, and could hardly stand, but I was able the same 
day to pull, and win, against the Brasenose Four-oar. 
* * * Looking over the names of the rowing men, my 
contemporaries, I cannot find any of whom I could 
positively say, that they had injured themselves by row- 
ing. * * * To a man of sound constitution and average 
strength, the amount of risk from rowing is infinitesimally 
small, provided that he takes ordinary care of himself 

*f Henry Brandt." 

Melton Mowbray, July^ 1869. , 

U, o. 14 


" I am not aware of any one point in which I may 
have received injury from rowing. ♦ * ♦ I have what 
is commonly called a capital wind for climbing hills, and 
I think the Boat-Racing may be fairly credited with 
having helped to produce that 

"H. E. Tuc^EY/' 

Wellington, New Zealand, August, 1873. 

"If I speak first of myself you will pardon me in 
this case, as of necessity being best able to tell you how 
rowing has affected me. When I went up from an in- 
land county to the University, I was utterly ignorant 
of rowing in any form. At Cambridge I at once took 
to it, and fearlessly say I have never had reason to 
regret having done so. 

. " I have met men (who rowed with me in the above 
boat) at Putney this year, looking well and hearty, as, 
thank God, I am, and others, the same who rowed with 
me at Henley in 1853 (I was then Captain of the 
C U. B. C). 

"At Cambridge I almost lived on the river, and during 
the whole time I was there scarcely ever saw a race, 
being engaged in every possible one. 

"E. Hawley." 
Shire Oaks, July, 1869. 

"As regards myself, I am glad to say I have always 
and still do enjoy very good health. ♦ * ♦ 

"W. A. NORRIS." 
Cirencester, June^ 1871. 


Extracts from letters of friends and relations 

oftJte dead, 

^^H. B. Foord was a very strong, healthy-looking 
nian. ♦ * * I don't think rowing had any thing to do 
with his death/* 

" Died within a few years of the Race, of a sudden 
attack of inflammation." 

"Died in the year 1863 ; rowing did him no harm.** 

" W. S. Longmorey one of the best and most finished 
Oars Cambridge ever produced, died of rapid decline 
in March, 1855." 

" Rowing never injured him, though I always con- 
sidered him delicate : I knew him well." 

'^Fred. Wm. Johnsony who rowed stroke in 1852, was 
at all times a most regular and temperate man." 

"We have no reason at all to suppose that my 
relative, Frederick Wm. Johnsofty who rowed in the 
Cambridge University Boat in 1852, injured his health 
thereby in any degree. He lived for some years after 
in robust health. He was a very hard-working clergy- 
man at Yarmouth until the time of his death. His 
death was caused by inflammation after four days' illness, 
in Dec. 1859. He had been feeling unwell for two 
or three weeks before this, but there was supposed to 
be nothing serious the matter, and his indisposition 
was regarded as the result of hard parochial work and 





The weather on the 8th April, 1854, was exceptionally- 
fine, and the Race was rowed rather earlier than usual 
— soon after 1 1 o'clock in the morning. 

Both Crews were good, but in spite of the utmost 
efforts of the Cambridge men their opponents won by 
II strokes; the race being rowed in 25 minutes 29 

The names of the Crews were as follows: 


W. F. Short, New Coll. 

Ad. Hooke, Worcester. 

W. Pinckney, Exeter. 

T. Blundell, Ch. Ch. 

T. A. Hooper, Piembroke. 

P. H. Nind\ Ch. Ch. 

Geo. L. Mellish, Pembroke. 

W. O. Meade King*, Pembroke. 

Coxswain, T. H. Marshall, Exeter. 

R. C. Galton, ist Trin. 
Spencer Nairne, Emm. 
John C. Davis, 3rd Trin. 
Stair Agnew, ist Trin. 
Edwd. Courage, ist Trin. 
F. W. Johnson\ 3rd Trin. 
Henry Blake, Corpus. 
John Wright, St John's. 

Coxswain, C. T. Smith, Caius. 

^ Rowed also in 1851. 


Life-raU of the Crews, 

The health of these 16 men, as measured by their 
chances of life, may be looked upon as satisfactory; 
14 out of the 16 being alive at the end of the year 1869. 
647 years may be allotted to the two Crews after the 
Race, or seven more than the estimated average. Two 
of the Cambridge men died prematurely, one seven 
years after he rowed, and the other nine. It is net 
thought that either of them suffered from his aquatic 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. 


Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew, 

"I can honestly say that I believe I have never 
suffered from my exertions on the river at Oxford, and 
few men were so constantly rowing as I was. I rowed 
four times for the Pair-oars, winning three times; three 
times for the sculls (winning twice, and once coming in 
second), and once for the Fours, and two years in the 
College Races. I rowed three times for the grand Chal- 
lenge at Henley (winning twice), three times for the 
sculls, three times for the Pair-oars (winning once), I also 
rowed in the winning Crew at Putney, and often in 
smaller Regattas without regular training. I believe it 
to have been this constant and regular exercise and 
training which enabled me to stand the strain of over 


head work longer and harder than most men undergo. 
* * * I have always said that, given a sound constitu- 
tion and careful training, no amount of rowing ought to 
hurt a man; indeed the action is so distinctly a healthy 
one, that, as compared with other exercises, I should 
have thought it decidedly beneficial I grew, I re- 
member, two inches round the chest in my first year's 
rowing at Oxford. 

*'W. F. Short." 

Woolwich, July^ 187 1. 

"I probably know as many old Varsity Oars as any 
one who has rowed in the Oxford and Cambridge Race, 
for I know either personally or by repute nearly all the 
men who rowed in the Oxford Boat, from the times of 
the Menzies to my own, 1854, and I may say even to the 
year i860, for I was in Oxford up to that date. Of all 
these, I know but one man who is said to have suffered 

from rowing, and that is , perhaps the most finished 

Oar Oxford ever had; the mischief, however, even in 
his case, was not incurred at Oxford, but at Eton\ I 
am thankful to say my own health has not suffered. 

"Ad. Hooke." 

Banbury, June^ 1859. 

*'As for myself, I don't think I am any the worse; 
and when I tell you that about eight years ago I had 
concussion of the brain, and though fit for nothing for 
about four years, am now as well as ever I was, you will 

^ I am personally acquainted with the old Oar referred to^ and he now 
enjoys excellent health. J. £• M. 


infer that my constitution was not hurt by rowing. I 
think it took me about three years to get over my first 
year at Oxford, and I still think it unadvisable for any 
one to row in the University Crew under 21. I thought 
so at the time, but was over persuaded to row in it 
directly I went to Oxford, having just left Eton, where I 
had been two years in the Eights. I also rowed in my 
College Four^ Torpid^ and Eight that first year, each of 
which to my mind was harder work than the University 
Crew. Still, all four together rather shut me up. * * * 
I know of none that I consider have hurt themselves 

by rowing. 

Salisbury, August^ 1869. 

" In answer to your enquiries about what effects I 

have felt from rowing in the University Match in 1854, 

I must say that I never felt the least ill effects from 

doing so. 

'' T. Blundell." 

HuLSALL, Sept, II, 187 1. 

*'As to my experience in rowing in the Inter-Uni- 
versity Race, I can most unhesitatingly say that it did 
not affect me in the slightest degree prejudicially. * * ♦ 
I was within a few months of 20 years of age when I 
rowed; I stood just six feet in my stockings; rowing 
weight was n stone 3 lbs., my ordinary weight then 
was II stone 7 lbs. My weight now, at 37 J, is 12 stone 
exactly, height 6 feet J inch. I insured my life about 
12 months since, and was accepted at the lowest rate of 


premium, I have had a good deal of * roughing it' since 
leaving Oxford, having served 12 months in the Crimea^ 
and lived in the colonies since I left the army. 

"Geo. L. Mellish." 

Canterbury, New Zeland, Feb, 1872. 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving members of the 

Cambridge Crew. 

"1 rowed in the Oxford and Cambridge Race in 1854, 
and trained for that of the previous year at Henley, 
and up to this time I certainly am aware of no ill effects 
whatever. Of the 1854 Crew No. i is the only member 
of whom I have entirely lost sight, all the others (with 
the exception of Johnsoti) are to my knowledge in. 
good health, and sound. 

" Spencer Nairne." 

HuNSDON, May^ 1869. 

" I can state from experience that there is nothing so 
conducive to health and improvement to the frame 
generally as the exercise of rowing, provided that a 
man has nothing the matter with his heart or lungs* 
I have a very large circle of acquaintance of rowing men 
who were in different University Crews, from the ages 
of 25 to 45 (I myself rowed in 1854), and I can con- 
fidently assert you can't find a finer set of men than 
they are. 

*'JoHN C. Davis;* 

Ilford, June^ 1869. 


- - ■ " 

''Individually I have suffered no injury from the 
exertion of a University Boat-Race, and during 15 years 
which have passed since the one in which I rowed I 
have not had an illness. ♦ * * I cannot recollect the 
case of any person of my acquaintance who has been 
injured by over exertion in rowing; but I could mention 
some who were forbidden to row for fear of injury. 

"Stair Agnew." 

London, June, 1869. 

"I rowed a good deal before I went to the Uni- 
versity as well as afterwards, and without intermission 
during the time I was there. Personally I felt no bad 
effects; on the contrary, the abstemiousness I learnt 
during my rowing career has enabled me since to take 
very active exercise without any sort of distress. 

"Edwd. Courage.*' 

Brentwood, yum^ 1869. 

" I have rowed three University Matches, and I am 
thankful to be able to say that I am not aware that my 
constitution has in the slightest degree suffered from 
the necessary exertion. 

*' Henry Blake." 

Norwich, yufy, i%6^ 

Extracts from letters of friends and relatives of the 


" Robert Cameron Gallon, M.D., died of fever, caught 
in the exercise .of his profession." 


" Gallon died, I believe, two years ago, but from cir- 
cumstances with which rowing could have had no con- 

"On the 22nd of March (1866), at Hadsor, Worces- 
tershire, Robert Cameron Gallon, M.D., aged 35." 

" I never heard that Gallon injured himself in rowing. 
* * * He had great pluck and great muscular strength 
for his build." 



"The University Race of March 15th, 1856, was 
rowed from Mortlake to Putney, as the tide was unfa- 
vourable for the usual course. The day was cold, 
the water rough, and the wind dead against the rival 
Crews. The struggle for victory was very keen, neither 
Boat clearing the other during the whole Race, but 
Cambridge at last succeeded in drawing half-a-boat's 
length ahead at the winning post, thus closing one of 
the best Races on record, though owing to the foul 
weather the time occupied was 25 minutes 50 seconds, 
rather longer than usual. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : — ^ 


Peter King Salter, Trin. Hall. 
F. C. Alderson, ist Trin. 
R. Lewis Lloyd, 3rd Trin. 
Edward H, Fairrie, Trin. Hall. 


H. Williams, St John's. 
Joseph McCormick, St John's. 
H. Snow, St John's. 
H. R. Mansel Jones, 3rd Trin. 
Coxswain, W. Wingfield, Trin, 


Philip Gurdon, Univ. 

W. F. Stocken, Exeter. 

R. J. Salmon, Exeter. 

Alfred B. Rocke, Ch. Ch. 

Richard Newman Townsend, Pembroke. 

A. P. Lonsdale, Balliol. 

George Bennett, New Coll. 

J. T. Thorley, Wadham. 

Coxswain, F, W. Elers, Trin. 

Life-rate of the Crews ^ 

The men who manned these two Boats were all alive 
in 1869. Between them they are likely to survive the 
Race 694 instead of 640 years, while each man may 
be expected to live 43*3 instead of 40 years after he 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

I 13 I 

Extracts from the letters of the members of the Cambridge 


" I can at once answer your questions on the subject 
of injury caused by rowing with regard to myself; with- 


^— pi ■ ■ . 

regard to friends or contemporaries there may be cases, 
but I have not heard of them. 

I did, no doubt, lose my health and strength for some 
time about eight or ten years ago, but I do not think it 
can fairly be. placed to rowing or training ; on the con- 
trary, I trace it now to giving up active exercise and 
living a quiet home life, without r^^lar strong exercise. 
I have taken to rowing, fencing, etc. again, and am 
gradually recovering my old strength. 

" I should say, on the whole question, that I do not 
know of one single instance of any real injury from 
rowing in the University Race. ♦ * ♦ I believe anyone 
who would take up this subject and put it before the 
public would be a real benefactor. 

" I think, on mature consideration, i.e. looking at it 
as an old Oarsman of liberal views in all athletic matters, 
that rowing is the very finest and safest exercise in the 
whole world. 

" J. Peter King Salter." 

Hammersmith, May^ 1871. 

" I do not think that I suffer in the least degree now 
from the effect of rowing. I remember, however, imme- 
diately after the Race, which was rowed on a very tem- 
pestuous day, so that we all got thoroughly wetted, the 
day also being very cold indeed, having pain and numb- 
ness in my limbs. For about three weeks I could not 
walk for more than a hundred yards without feeling con- 
siderable pain there, and almost unable to raise my legs. 
I was, however, speedily cured by hot water sea-baths 
which were prescribed for me. All my colleagues are, I 
believe, alive and well, though I have lost sight of 


II ■ I I I I I II - — ■ ■ 

almost all of them. I know of no case where rowing 
has been hurtful to health except my own case, as ex- 

" F. C. Alderson." 
Northampton, yune, 1869. 

" I beg to state that of those who rowed with me 
in the University Boat-Race I do not know that any 
have ever felt any ill effects in consequence. I rowed in 
four Races. Twenty-one others took part in them with 
me, that is Cambridge men ; of the 22 men three are 
dead, but in no case can their death be attributed to 
rowing. * * * For myself I can safely say I have never 
felt the smallest evil from rowing, as since I have left 
the University I do not recollect having had a day's 
illness, and can do as much in walking or other exercisfe 
as most men. Between School and the University I 
find I rowed 132 Races. Of those who rowed with me, I 
have lost sight of a few, but the greater part are without 
exception in perfectly good health. 

"R. Lewis Lloyd." 

Rhayader, ^ufy, 1869. 

" During the five or six years in which I rowed in 
Cambridge, and afterwards in London, I always enjoyed 
the very best health, with the feeling that the exercise 
which I was taking s^eed with me entirely. * * * I am 
now in a pretty fair state of health, being able to stand 
a considerable amount of hard work, in the shape of a 
20 or 30 miles walk or a good long pull on the river. 

" Edward H, Fairrie." 

London, yune, 1871, 


** I am now a Nova Scotian missionary, and, thanks 
to my training and rowing, I am able to do any amount 
of work. * ♦ * I rowed five years at Henley, and four 
University Races at Putney, winning three; I rowed in 
1859, the year we sank. I rowed four years head of the 
river at Cambridge, and won innumerable scratch and 
other races, and now I am as strong as ever, and would 
very much like to have another turn at the Oxford Crew- 

** Hugh Williams." 

Nova Scotia, Fd. 1870, 

**I am not aware that rowing has done me any 
injury. I was not, however, a rowing man ; I pulled 
against Oxford in 1856, but only once for my College, 
when there was some danger of our Boat's losing th6 
head place on the river. * * * I do not personally 
know of any one who was injured by rowing. 

"Joseph McCormick." 

Lewisham, yun^t 1869. 

" I am very glad to be able to inform you that I 
have never yet experienced any ill effects from rowing; 
but am quite sound and warrantable. 

" H. Snow." 

St Leonard's-on-Sea, April, 1871. 

" As far as my own experience goes, I can only say 
that from six years of hard rowing at Eton and Cam- 
bridge I derived benefit, rather than the contrary, in 
health and strength ; with regard to my own contempo- 
raries, of course, I have lost sight of many of them^ 


but those I do meet give one the idea of being decidedly 
'* weight carriers ' in more senses than one. 

" H. R. Mansel Jones." 

London, Juney 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of the members of the 

Oxford Crew. 

'* My health was certainly injured for some time by 
rowing ; but I attribute it mainly to rowing with bad 
Crews in College Races. With the present system of 
training, if a man has a fairly powerful frame and a good 
constitution * * * he might, in my opinion, row for one 
or two years at Putney without injury. * * ♦ I think 
you would find that no University Oarsmen who be- 
longed to a College that had no boat on the river, had 
suffered in any way from the Putney Race. ♦ ♦ * I 
know that I was much stronger my second Putney Race 
than I was my first, and I would sooner row 5 miles 
with a good Crew, than \\ with a bad one. 

" Philip Gurdon." 

BuLKiNGTON, May^ 1871, 

" I am happy to be able to inform you that I have 
no reason to think that my health has been in any 
measure injured by the training, &c., of 13 years ago. I 
know not what it is to have a medical man in my house, 
I mean of course for myself; neither can I call to mind 
any 'rowing man' with whom I was personally ac- 
quainted whose health has suffered from the exertion 
which Boat-Racing necessitates. 

« W. F. Stocken.** 
London, May^ 1869. 


" I rowed in the celebrated University Eight Race 
of 1856, the best Race on record, neither boat having 
ever cleared the other throughout the whole course, and 
I cannot say that I have any reason to regret the 
part I took in that Race. I am not that I know of 
any worse for it, nor have I ever heard that any of the 
Crew suffered ; to the best of my knowledge they are 
all alive and in the enjoyment of good health, at least 
I have never heard anything to the contrary. Collateral 
-evidence is sometimes useful. When I was ordained, 
the Bishop spoke most highly of the Clei^ in his 
diocese who had. been boating men, and made special 
mention of a University Oar. 

" R. J. Salmon." 

London, May^ 1869. 

"Since 1856, when I rowed in the match, * ♦ * I 
have taken no violent exercise. At times I have felt very 
good for nothing, and have had pains in the region of 
the heart, which made me at one time think it was af- 
fected ; how^ever, I am now convinced it is only ' liver.' 
* ♦ * I have come to the conclusion that all I require is 
violent exercise, and have just bought a boat and am 
going to take to rowing again, although I have not had 
an oar in my hands now for 1 1 years. 

"Alfred B. Rocke." 

Birmingham, J^yy 1869. 

" As regards the effect of training on my own health 
personally I can lay nothing to its charge. I do not 
think that any of the affections which from time to time 


I have suffered from can in all fairness be attributed to 
the effects of rowing or training. However, I happen 
to be physically qualified (if ever any one was so) for 
undei^oing the labour and fatigue of training. * * * I 
hope that you may succeed in placing truth (which is 
ihm ultimate object of all honest investigation) clearly 
before the public. 

<* Richard Newman Townsend." 

Cork, August 27, 1869. 

" In my own case I enjoy the ipost perfect health, 
and am wonderfully well. I began rowing when at 
school at 13 years old, and constantly rowed Races 
there. At Oxford I was always rowing, and every term 
was in training, more or less, for some Race or other. 
College or University. Amongst all my rowing ac- 
quaintances I cannot now call to mind one who was 
injured by rawing alone. I know some where the disease 
has been laid at the door of rowing, but if enquiry was 
made, it would be found either that the man had rowed 
against his doctor's advice, or else had not strictly kept 
the rules of training. * ♦ * I rowed two years in the 
Putney Race, and I do not think a single man of those 
two Crews is at the present time the worse for those 
exertions, now 12 or 13 years ago, and one Race was 
the hardest and closest ever rowed between the two 

"A. P, Lonsdale." 

Stafford, May 6, 1869. 

" Personally I believe myself to be none the worse 
for having rowed v. Cambridge in 1856. I have been 

U. o. 15 


rowing more or less ever since, at Surbiton and else- 
where, and, except for the inevitable effects of time, I 
feel as ready for it and as little incapacitated by past 
exertions as I could hope to be. * * * Of course, if a 
man comes to the post improperly prepared, he may 
suffer severely and feel the after effects, but if he has 
taken proper pains and has been carefully attended to, 
by the time he gets to Putney the work is merely 
pastime to him and without danger. 

"George Bennett." 

London, Aprils 1871. 



The University Race of April 4, 1857, was rowed as 
usual from Putney to Mortlake. Oxford won the toss, 
and, rowing in perfect form, gained and kept the lead the 
whole way, gradually increasing the distance between 
the two boats until at the winning post Cambridge was 
left 35 seconds astern. Time 22 minutes 55 seconds; 
this was the first race rowed in keelless boats, and 
both Universities also used round oars for the first time. 

The names of the crews were as follows : 


Robert W. Risley; Exeter. 
Philip Gurdon*, Univ. 
John Arkell, Pembroke. 
Richard Martin, Corpus. 

^ Rowed also in 1855. 


W. Hardy Wood, Univ. 
Edmond Warre, Balliol. 
A. P. Lonsdale \ Balliol. 
J. T. Thorley, Wadham, 

Coxswain, F, W. Elers, Trin, 


Arthur P. Holme, 2nd Trin, 
Anthony Benn, Emm. 
W. H. HoUey, Trin. HalL 
A. L. Smith, ist Trin. 
J. J. Serjeantson, ist Trin. 
R. Lewis Lloyd*, Magd. 
P. Pearson (now Pennant), St John's. 
H. SnowS St John's. 
Coxswain, R. Wharton, Magd. 

Life-rate of the Crews. 

In the year 1869 no death had occurred among any 
of the members of these two crews. Consequently to the 
16 men who rowed, 704 instead of 640 years of life after 
the Race may be allotted, each man living 44 instead of 
40 years after he rowed. 

Effects of training and rowing upon the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. 


Extracts from the letters of the Members of the Oxford 


"I never yet knew a man's health permanently 
injured by training, when he had in the first instance a 

^ Rowed also in 1856. 



constitution naturally strong enough for sudi hard work, 
when he paid attention to the rules when in training, 
or when he began or left off training gradually^ and 
not all at once. As far as I am concerned myself, 
I can say honestly I have never been so well as when 
in training. * * ♦ I can say this after 12 years' hard 
racing, and I only regret that I am no longer in a 
position to go on with it 

''Robert W. Risley.*' 

HouNSLOW, July, 1869. 

" For myself, I can only say that from the time I 
was a schoolboy of about 15 years of age to the time 
I took my degree at Oxford, I rowed some 60 Races 
in all, and amongst them three of the annual Races 
against Cambridge at Putney ; and if I had my time to 
come over again with the knowledge I now possess, I 
would enter upon the same course, not only without 
hesitation, but without the least misgiving, ♦ ♦ ♦ I would 
also add, that a physician who has known my family for 
many years, gave, it as his opinion, that so far from 
being injured by rowing, I was much stronger than I 
should have been had I not been a rowing man at 
Oxford. I hope therefore my case at least will afford 
an instance in which rowing has been beneficial, 

"John Arkell." 

Gateshead, June^ 1869. 

" I think no man should undertake the training and 
rowing of the University Race without undergoing a 
thorough medical examination. ♦ ♦ * It was what I did 
myself as soon as I wa3 asked to pull in the University 


Boat, and I certainly have hever had to regret for one 
moment any bad effects from training ; on the contrary, 
I was never so well as when in training. The year I 
pulled at Henley was the. only year that I ever escaped 
my annual attack of hay fever, which generally com- 
pletely prostrates me with asthma. * ♦ * I certainly 
never was in such a state of robust health in my life. 

"Richard Martin.** 

Barnstaple, May^ 1869. 

'* I rowed in the University Eight twice at Putney, 
in 1857 and 1858, and once at Henley, and I have 
never felt any ill effects whatever. I am as well now 
as I ever was in my life, sind should of all things enjoy 
another such a course of training and exercise- I have 
no ailment, and never have had, which I would in the 
smallest d^ree connect with the University Race. 

"W. Hardy Wood;* 

Benwick, Aprttf 1871. 

" Personally I have found no inconvenience from 
rowing hard now, or from having rowed hard. I con- 
tinue to row in Races against the Boys' Eight here when 
in training, that is just before Henley. 

*'Edmond Warre.** 

Eton, May^ 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of the Cambridge Crew. 

" I do not call to mind any one single person of my 
time permanently injured through their exertions. My 


own opinion has been, and I think will remain, that a 
healthy, sober fellow may train and row as much as he 


"Arthur P. Holme," 

Yarmoitth, Juncy 1869. 


" Twelve years have now expired since I rowed in the 
Cambridge University Boat, during the whole of which 
time I have been in perfect health ; * * * so my ex- 
perience would lead me to believe that the hard training 
and exertion required does not in the least injure a natu- 
rally strong man's constitution. I am not aware that any 
of the men who rowed with me are the worse for it ; they 
are all, or were a few months since, alive and in good 
health. Not only did I row in the University Boat, but 
in 32 Eight-Oar first division Races, in my College Pairs 
^v^ry year I was up, in all Scratch Four Races it was 
possible to row in, in the University Pairs, and in fact 
in every Race I could go in for. 

"Anthony Benn." 

Crediton, May^ 1869. 

" I have not found my health in any way injured by 
training for and rowing in the University Boat-Race; 
it is now 12 years since I did so. * * * 

«W. H. HOLLEY." 

Okehampton, May^ 186$^ 

" I rowed without intermission during the years 1855, 
856, 1857, 1858, and down to Easter 1859. During 
lat period I rowed three Races at Putney, and one at 


Henley for the Cambridge University; besides some 
100 others for the First Trinity Boat Club. I have not 
the least hesitation in saying that I have never, up to 
this moment, experienced the slightest ill effects from 
either the rowing or training I was subjected to ; and I 
can only add, that I heartily wish that circumstances 
permitted my still having recourse to the river. I can 
honestly say that I do not myself know of a single 
individual who has been damaged by rowing, but, on the 
contrary, I know men who from being weeds have grown 
into strong and healthy men on the river. 

"A. L, Smith." 

London, June^ 1869. 

" I am very glad you have undertaken the task of 
collecting statistics about ' Varsity Oars.' As far as I 
am concerned, I have never felt the least harm from the 
training, and when I had occasion to insure my life 
about a year ago, the medical man who examined me 
gave a most satisfactory account of my constitution. * * 
Our Boat was a good reading one too, as it contained 
one Senior Classic, three Seniors Ops., one Junior Op., 
and two Scholars of their College. 

" J. J. Sergeantson.'' 

Lichfield, June, 1869. 

" No case of injury (from rowing) has come within 
my experience. I gave some attention to this subject 
some time ago, but I could ascertain no case of injury to 
health among University Oarsmen who were my con- 
temporaries at Oxford or Cambridge. * * * My own 
experience consists of three trainings for a University 


Race (I rowed two Races, the third time an attack of 
scarlet fever at the last moment prevented my taking 
part in the Race), and rowing four years at Henley 
Regatta. I have never felt the slightest after inconve- 
nience in health or otherwise that I could attribute to 

** P. P. Pennant/' 

London, June^ 1869. 


The University Race of 1858 was rowed on the 27th 
of March. The day was cold and inclement, the wind 
almost dead against the competitors, and the water 
somewhat lumpy and troubled. Though Oxford made 
a gallant struggle for the victory, her opponents gradu- 
ally drew ahead, and succeeded in reaching Mortlake 
twenty-two seconds before their rivals; the Race 
being rowed in 21 minutes 23 seconds. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


H. H. Lubbock, Caius. 
A. L. Smith\ ist Trin. 
W. 7. HaVart, St John's. 
Duncan Darroch, ist Trin. 
Hugh Williams*, St John's. 
R. Lewis Lloyd*, Magd. 
A. H. Fairbaim, 2nd Trin. 
y. Hall, Magd. 
Coxswain, R. Wharton, Magd. 

^ Rowed also in 1857. ' Rowed also in 18561. 




Robert W. Risley^ Exeten 
John Arkell*, Pembroke. 
Charlton G. Lane, Ch* Ch. 
W. G. G. Austin, Magd. 
Ernald Lane, Balliol. 
W. Hardy Wood\ Univ. 
Edmond Warre^ BallioL 
J. T. Thorley, Wadham. 

Coxswain, H. Walpole, Balliol. 

Life-rate of the Crews. 

Two early deaths among these 16 Oarsmen mate- 
rially lessen their collective life-rate, which may be esti- 
mated at 636 instead of 640 years after the Race. Each 
man may however be credited with a fair average allow- 
ance of life, as, by the law of life chances, he will only 
enjoy some few months* less of existence than his 40 
anticipated years. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

9 7 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving Members of 

the Cambridge Crew. 

'* As far as I am concerned, I have never felt any 
bad effects, and I rowed several Races at Cambridge 

^ Rowed also in 1857. 


after the Putney Race in 1858. * * * I should say, from 
my own experience, that the present Eight-Oar course 
at Cambridge, i J mile, is far more likely to do harm, 
especially to an honest Oar and no shirker ^ as the pace 
for the distance is far more severe, and your companions 
in the struggle not always willing to do their utmost 

*' H. H. Lubbock." 

Norwich, June^ 1869. 

"In answer to your question as to the effects of 
training on my health, before I went into regular train- 
ing for the University Race I was very fat and soft; so 
much so that at Harrow I weighed about 13 stone, and 
was never good at active exercises. I also remember 
that the year before I commenced regular training I 
used to feel in the boat as if I would die, and at about 
the same time got completely shut up in going up a hill 
in the north. The two years of training in 1858 and 
1859 seem to have changed all that, for I have found 
that I have far better staying powers and endurance, 
and I don't think have ever felt so shut up as I used to 
do. I have enjoyed excellent health ever since; my 
weight last November was 13 stone *j\ lbs. 

"Duncan Darroch." 

London, May^ 187 1. 

" To speak from my own experience I am able to 
say that my health has hitherto sustained no injury 
from rowing at Cambridge 10 years ago ; on the con- 
trary, I believe I derived benefit from the exercise. My 
Vest increased in breadth, the muscles of the back and 
;s were strengthened, and I think the training and 


discipline I then underwent have enabled me to bear 
with more ease any bodily exertions I have since made. 
I think it well to mention that I took to violent exercise 
at an early age, and when at Rugby was accustomed to 
run long distances at a good pace without stopping. * * * 
When I call to mind my friends who rowed with me at 
Putney against Oxford, in 1858 and i860, I find there 
is not one who, to my knowledge, has been injured in 
any way by his exertions. Those of them whom I meet 
occasionally, always bear witness to the good effects they 
have derived from rowing. 

"A. H. Fairbairn." 

TWYFORD, yutUt 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of friends of the dead. 

" W. y. Havart, Rector of Milton-Bryant, Beds, died 
in 1866, of typhus fever caught when visiting parish- 
ioners who were ill of it." 

He was uninjured by rowing.' 



" y. HallAioA of brain fever in the year 1868, aged 


*'He was a powerful man, and was' uninjured by 

Many old Oars refer to him as being a universal 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew. 

*'As regards myself, I feel certain that so far from 
having been injured, I benefited in health and strength 


by the severe training, but I must add that I had alwa3rs 
been used to hard exercise and generally was in good 
condition, so that there was not the same sudden change 
in diet, &c., that was the case with some men. ♦ ♦ ♦ 
Of the men who rowed with me I don't know one who 
has been injured ; some I have followed in after life and 
know to be perfectly sound. 

" Charlton G. Lane.** 

Great Be&khampsted, May, 1869. 

'' My health is as good as when in 1858 I rowed in 
the University Eight, although I now have been residing 
for eleven successive years in Demerara, the climate of 
which is . generally thought to be very trying for 
Europeans. Had my constitution been in the slightest 
degree affected by any boating exertions, the effect 
would certainly have been apparent by this time. 

*' W. G. G. Austin." 

Demerara, May, 1871. 

''My personal experience and knowledge of many 
Oarsmen who were my contemporaries, or were not so, 
would lead me to say that as a general rule it is not an 
injury to the constitution to row in the University Boat. 
♦ * * My own experience tells me that, given training, 
a short course is far more trying than a long one, from 
the greater quickness of stroke. Two of my own con- 
temporaries in University Crews are dead, one a Cantab 
and the other Oxon, but from causes wholly, as I believe, 
unconnected with rowing. 

"Ernald Lane." 

Oxford, May, 1869. 



The Race, which was rowed on Friday, the 15th of 
April, 1859, took place under circumstances which 
proved peculiarly trying to Cambridge. Their Crew 
was universally admitted to be a good one, but their 
boat was unfortunately too slightly built to encounter 
safely such wind and sea as she had to face on the 
appointed day. After the first few strokes she became 
completely waterlogged, and though the Crew struggled 
manfully, persevering even when completely over- 
whelmed by the waves, their efforts were unavailing, 
and their boat at length sank beneath them. Some 
of the rowers were unable to swim, still the whole 
Crew were, rescued, fortunately none the worse for their 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


H. Fleming Baxter, Brasenose. 

R. F. Clarke, St. John's. 

Charlton G. Lane^ Ch. Ch. 

Hon. V, Lawless (now Lord Cloncurry), Balliol. 

G. Morrison, BallioL 

R. W. Risley", Exeter. 

Geo. G. T. Thomas (now Treheme), Balliol. 

John Arkell', Pembroke. 

Coxswain, A. J. Robarts, Ch. Ch. 

^ Rowed also in 1858. ' Rowed also in 1857. 



Nat Royds, 1st Trin. 
H. J. Chaytor, Jesus. 
A. L. Smithy ist Trin. 
Duncan Darroch', ist Trin. 
Hugh Williams*, St John's. 
R. Lewis Lloyd", Magd. 
George Paley^ St John's. 
J. Hall", Magd. 
Coxswain, J. T. Moriand, ist Trin. 

Life-rate of the Crews, 

These sixteen men will probably enjoy an average 
allowance of life. The eariy deaths of two of the Cam- 
bridge men reduces the aggregate sum of years which 
as healthy men they might be expected to enjoy after 
the Race, from 640 to 632 years. 

Effects of Training and Rowing on the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

12 J. 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew, 

"I rowed three times in the University Eight at 
Oxford, twice at Putney, and once at Henley, and be- 
sides that did as much rowing as any man during the 

^ Rowed also in 1857. ' Rowed also in 1858. 

' Rowed also in 1856. 


time I was at the University, having won every aquatic 
honour that was to be won either in the College or the 
University at large. I was ' sounded ' before I rowed, 
and I have been sounded several times since, and my 
honest belief is that I am not in the least injured by 
the rowing. Last year one of the first medical men in 
London said this after examining me carefully : * I don't 
know when I have seen a healthier chest and lungs, and 
so far from having damaged yourself with rowing, if I 
were going to certify for you for an insurance office, I 
should say that they ought to make a reduction in your 
favour.* ♦ ♦ * I cannot lay my finger upon any man 
who rowed with me that has been injured by it. 

"H. Fleming Baxter." 

Wolverhampton, May^ 1869. 

" I rowed at Putney in 1859, and have rowed for 
seven years in the College Races here and also in 
various other Races. Indeed I was almost * boating mad ' 
when I was an undergraduate, and still retain an intense 
fondness for it. It seems to me, that all things taken 
into account, I have derived very great benefit from 
rowing and training; it is of course hard to tell how 
far any present ailments are due to rowing, but I am 
of opinion that in no possible respect have I been in- 
jured by the very considerable number of Races in 
which I have rowed, and that, on the contrary, it has 
been very beneficial to me. I came up to Oxford an 
overgrown, sickly London-bred boy of 17 J. I soon took 
to rowing, and gradually lost my weaknesses, filled 
out, and improved physically in every respect. Indeed, 
my doctor in Oxford advised me to row in the Uni- 
versity Eight after a very careful examination of my 


chest. ♦ * * Of the men who rowed with me in 1859, 
all are, so far as I know, perfectly well and strong : I 
have seen several of them lately. 

"R. F. Clarke." 

Oxford, May^ 1869. 

" I do not know personally of any one on whom the 
exertion or the previous training of the Putney Race 
has had an injurious effect. * * * In my own case no 
injury of any kind whatever has resulted, although I 
was younger than the average of men who row in the 
University Eights (having been under 19 years of age 
in April, 1859), and although I continued in a similar 
course of training in connexion with the College Fours 
and the College Eights. On the whole my opinion is, 
that to a naturally sound constitution the exertion of 
the Putney Race is beneficial rather than the reverse. 

<* Cloncurry." 

Hazle-hatch, Aprils 1871. 

" In reply to your letter respecting the alleged in- 
jury to rowing men from the Putney Race, I think I 
may say that I only know of one instance in which 
anything like permanent injury resulted, and that was 

the case of \ I have either rowed in, or trained 

most of the Oxford Crews since 1859, ^^^^ conse- 
quently know pretty intimately most of the men, and 
hear constantly of the remainder, and a healthier set of 
men could not be found. ♦ ♦ ♦ With ordinary care the 
University Race is the safest Race that a fairly strong 

^ This Oarsman in a letter to me speaks of his "general health" as 
"excellent." J. E. M. 


man can engage in, and I am certain that many men 
derive great benefit from it. 

"G. Morrison." 

DowNTON, June^ 1869. 

" I myself rowed in my College Eight when she was 
head of the river three years running ; in the years (if 
I recollect rightly) 1858, 1859 and i860; and I rowed at 
Putney in the Oxford Crew under my then name of 
'Thomas' in 1859. I have also rowed at Henley, 
Kingston, and other Regattas, and feel satisfied that my 
health, so far from being injured, has been invigorated 
and established by the exercise. I often wish I had the 
opportunity of indulging in the same way now. I have 
a large acquaintance with boating men of my day, 
and I know of no instance of constitution impaired by 
the rowing they have done. To the best of my belief, 
my seven 'assessors' in the Race of 1859 ^^^ *^ ^^ 
day in as ' good form ' and as 'fit * as they could wish 
to be. I maintain that the stiffest Race, following upon 
a sufficient amount of judicious training, cannot by any 
possibility injure a healthy subject. 

" Geo, G. T. Treherne." 

London, May^ 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving Members 

of the Cambridge Crew. 

"As regards myself, I feel sure that rowing had a 
most beneficial effect on my health, and I don't Icnow 
a single instance among my friends or contemporaries 
where any injury has been sustained. * * * I am one 

U. O. 16 


who has always enjoyed perfect health ; so those who 
think rowing injurious say they won't accept me as an 
instance, for nothing would harm me. 

" Nat. Royds." 

Saint Neots, June^ 1869. 

"With respect to the question you ask me, I have 
only to tell you that I underwent the training four 
times ; three times for the Race at Putney, and once for 
Henley, and have felt myself no ill effects from it. It 
is now 10 years since I first rowed in the University 
Race, and I passed the medical officer of a Life In- 
surance Company at the beginning of this year; he 
assured me that heart, &c., were all right. Very few men 
row so often as I did, and only one, or two at most, 
have rowed oftener. I never heard of any one who 
injured his constitution by rowing in a University Race. 
* * * I have heard several say that they were the 
better for their rowing, and never heard any one com- 
plain, * * * Of my contemporaries in the Cambridge 
Boats, all I believe but two are now alive ; * * * 'neither 
of these deaths had anything to do with rowing. 

" H. J. Chaytor." 

Brewood, May^ 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of friends of the dead. 

*^ George A. Paley died of typhus fever in 1866, 
caught in sessions at Leeds. 

"Rowing never did him any harm/' 




The Race of Saturday the 31st of March, i860, was 
very hotly contested; Cambridge only succeeded in 
distancing her adversary by one length at the finish. 
Though the day was cold and rainy, yet the wind was 
not sufficiently strong to ruffle the water, and the rowing 
of both Crews was admirable. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 

S. Heathcote, ist Trin. 
H. J. Chaytor\ Jesus. 
D. Ingles, 1st Trin. 
Joseph S. Blake, Corpus. 
M. Coventry, Trin. Hall. 
Benjn. N. Cherry, Clare Hall. 
A. H. Fairbaim', 2nd Trin. 
J. Hall\ Magd. 

Coxswain, J. T. Morland, Trin. 


J. N. McQueen, Univ. 

G. Norsworthy, Magd. 

T. F. Halsey, Ch. Ch. 

J. Young, Corpus. 

G. Morrison*, Balliol. 

H. Fleming Baxter, Brasenose. 

C. J. Strong, Univ. 

R. W. Risley*, Exeter. 

Coxswain, A. J. Robarts, Ch. Ch. 

^ Rowed also in 1859. ' Rowed also in 1858. 

' Rowed also in 1857. 



Effects of Training and Rowing on the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

8 8 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving Members of 

the Cambridge Crew. 

"I beg to' state that, so far as my experience goes, 
the training and rowing in University Boat-Races are 
not at all injurious to after health. 

"S. Heathcote." 

Devizes, March, 1S71. 

" I have much pleasure in answering your question 
on a subject which interests me so much. So far from 
injuring the constitution, I believe that rowing is gene- 
rally an immense benefit to it. I was a weak and 
rather unhealthy man when I went up to Cambridge, 
and weighed about 1 1 stone, and came away in strong 
health, weighing 12 stone 7 lbs. within six months of 
my last training. During the two years and half I was 
at Cambridge I was in strict training 10 times and rowed 
in nearly all the principal races of the day, and I am now 
in perfect health and up to any amount of work, and 
weigh 13 stone 7lbs. 

" I know no one who is said to have suffered from 
the work of a Putney training. 

"D. Ingles." 

Hemel Hempstead, 5:^. 1869. 

" I rowed two University Races, i860 and 1861. Two 
years ago, when the discussion on the subject took place 


in the 'Times/ I was examined by a medical man to 
satisfy myself upon the point, and he failed to observe 
any abnormal symptom. Last spring year I passed a 
medical examination for an Insurance Society quite 
satisfactorily, the examining doctor knowing of my 
former aquatic exertions. For myself, I can trace no 
evil result to my training or rowing whatsoever, unless 
it be that I suffer from the want of exercise, more perhaps 
than I might have done under ordinary conditions, 

"Joseph S. Blake." 

Salisbury, yuly^ 1869* 

**I may say that I have not heard of any cases among 
men of my own time where rowing in the University 
Race has done any permanent injury. I should perhaps 
qualify this by restricting it to Cambridge. * * * Row- 
ing very seldom does any permanent injury, and for this 
reason, that the process of training finds out any weak 
point, and a man is obliged to stop rowing before any 

harm is done. 

" M. Coventry.'* 

Manchester, May^ 18 71. 

*' From my own experience I feel confident that the 
training does not injure a sound man, provided he goes 
out of training fairly. * ♦ * I really cannot call to 
mind one single man that I know to be injured by 
boating. For myself, I have not had, or needed, the 
services of a doctor from 1858 to this present time; 
in fact, I always hold that the training did me good. 

"Benj. N. Cherry." 

Stony Stratford, May, 1869. 


Extracts from the letters of the surviving Members of 

the Oxford Crew. 

"So far as it concerned me, training seemed to have 
had a beneficial effect at the time, and afterwards I have 
felt no ill consequences. 

"I am now a stout man, weighing 15 stone, but able 
to be in the saddle all day without fatigue, or, if necessary, 
walk my 10 or 15 miles without any distress. I can only 
hope the rest of the Crew are as well as I am. 

"J. N. McQueen." 

Bengal, February^ 187a. 

" In reply to your note, I beg to say that I have not, 
to my knowledge, suffered any injury from rowing at 
the University. I do not consider that any injury is 
likely to be caused by rowing in the Race at Putney 
unless men row too young ; but in that case, I expect 
that all violent athletic sports might have a bad effect 

London, August^ 187 1. 

'*I rowed in the University Boat-Race in the year 
i860, and I can safely say that (with the exception of 
ordinary colds, and a very slight touch of gastric fever 
in 1865) I have never known a dafs illness from that 
time to this. ♦ ♦ ♦ My own experience as Captain of 
my College Boat-Club, and secretary of the O. U. B. C, 
has always been, that those who are not strong enough 
for the work get ample warning before they have been 


at it long enough to injure themselves. ♦ * * Shortly- 
after the^Race in i860 a well-known London physician, 
who knows my constitution thoroughly, told me he 
'thought I was all the better.' 

"T. F. Halsey." 
Hemel Hempstead, June^ 1869. 

**I rowed in the Boat-Race at Putney in i860, and 
the only way in which I personally suffered from it was 
slightly from rheumatism, the season having been very 
wet, and I hereditarily subject to it. Of course there 
are exceptions, and instances of men of delicate con- 
stitutions suffering from the training usual for the Inter- 
University Boat-Race, but in my opinion there is nothing 
in it that is likely to injure a tolerably robust young 
man; and the Oarsmen for such a race are naturally 
chosen 'ceteris paribus' of the strongest constitution. It 
is right that I should say that my opinion is not founded 
on a long experience of boating. I never rowed before 
going to Oxford, was there only three years, and have 
never rowed since; and I have lost sight, to a great 
extent, of the men with whom I rowed in the Uni- 
versity Eights of 1859 Henley, and i860 Putney. 

«C. J. Strong, 
^^ Also late Captain of the John +." 

Derby, June^ 1869. 

Extracts front letters of friends and relations of the dead, 

*' J, Young was one of the Oxford Crew in the year 
i860. He died in the full vigour of manly strength (of 
an attack of typhoid fever, November 26, 1866), and I 
have no reason whatever to suppose that his constitution 



had been in the slightest d^jree affected by his exertions 
either in rowing or cricket" 

**J, Young, who was in the Boat with me in i860, 
was one of the finest men in it — ^tall and broad, apparently 
of as fine physique as any I ever saw ; and during the 
time I remained I knew him well, and he always seemed 
to have good health." 



On Saturday March 16, 1861, Cambridge was suc- 
cessfully distanced by one of the finest Crews which 
Oxford ever sent to Putney, and which succeeded in 
reaching the winning post in 23 minutes 30 seconds 
from the time of starting, having to row part of the 
time against an unfavourable tide and a head-wind. 
The Cambridge men, who rowed with great pluck, came 
in about 48 seconds behind their opponents. 

The names of the Crews were as follow^ : 


Weldon Champneys, Brasenose. 
Ed. B. Merriman, Exeter. 
Henry E. Medficott, Wadham. 
Wm. Robertson, Wadham. 
G. Morrison*, Balliol. 
A. R. Poole, Trinity. 
H. G. Hopkins, Corpus. 
W. M. Hoare, Exeter. 

Coxswain, S. O. B. Ridsdale, Wadham. 

^ Rowed also in 1859 aod 18604 


university oars. 249 


G. H. Richards, 1st Trin. 
H. J. Chaytor^, Jesus 
W. H. Tarleton, St John's. 
. Joseph S. Blake', Corpus. 
M. Coventry*, Trin. Hall. 
Heniy H. CoUings, 3rd Trin. 
R. U. P^irose Fitzgerald, Trin. Hall. 
J. Hall\ Magd. 
Coxswain, T. K. Gaskell, 3rd Trin. 

Effects of Training and Rowing on the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

5 10 I. 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew. 

"My own personal experience goes to prove that a 
Race such as the Oxford and Cambridge is not injurious 
to the constitution. I rowed in 1861, and though for 
nearly two years before I engaged in almost every 
Oxford Race for which I was eligible, and likewise for 
a similar period after, including two Henley Regattas, 
in the latter of which I had to row three deciding heats 
on a sultry day, in almost as many hours, I have never 
suffered the slightest inconvenience from my exertions, 
and was, only a few months ago, pronounced perfectly 
sound by a doctor who examined me. 

"Weldon Champneys.*' 

London, Mayy 1869. 

^ Rowed also in 1859 ^^ \%^» ' Rowed also in i860. 

' Rowed also in 1858, 1859, and 1860^ 


" Replying to your queries, I must say that person- 
ally I have discovered no evil effects to result from the 
exertion and training incidental to my contest with 
Cambridge. I should however say, that when I was 
asked to represent my University, I went to my doctor 
and was examined and overhauled by him, and pro- 
nounced sound before I consented to row. The exertion 
no doubt is great, bringing as it does all the muscles of 
the frame into play, but I cannot see that with due 
caution on the part of the rower evil effects ensue ; of 
course this pre-supposes that the man is sound before 
he engages in the trial. ♦ ♦ * My experience leads me 
to say that nine out of every ten cases of breaks-down 
amongst rowing men may be traced to previous disease, 
or foolish excess on the termination of training, and not 
to over-exertion for which rowing is so much abused. 

"Ed. B. Merriman." 

Marlborough, June^ 1869. 

" I rowed No. 3 in the Oxford Boat in the year 1861. 
I have no reason whatever for supposing that I received 
any injury to my constitution by doing so. * * * All 
the members of the Oxford Crew of 1861 were well- 
gtown and powerful men, and, with one exception, new 
Oars in a University Boat. I left Oxford at the end of 
the year, and did not row again. ♦ * * AH my comrades 
are at the present time in the enjoyment, to all ap- 
pearances, of sound working health. 

"Henry E. Medlicott." 

London, June^ 1869. 

" J am happy to say that I am not sensible of having 
in any way injured my health or constitution by rowing ; 


indeed, I may go so far as to express my belief that I 
am at the present moment as sound in wind and limb 
as I was in the year 1861 when I rowed against Cam- 

"Wm. Robertson.* 

Melbourne, Australia, August^ 1871. 

" It entirely depends upon a man's previously sound 
condition whether or not the training for the University 
Race be injurious. * * * In my own case, I took care to 
consult a medical man, and got myself well sounded, 
and can trace no special influence upon my system to 
my rowing in the University Crew. I look upon it as 
one event in my rowing life from the whole course of 
which I derived great benefit 

"H. G. Hopkins." 

Cheltenham, May^ 1S69. 

^ I do not believe the constitution to be permanently 
injured in numerous instances by the system of training 
and rowing in the University Bpat-Race. I rowed in 
1 86 1, 1862, 1863, and have not heard of the death of, or 
even injury felt by, any single one of the 18 or 20 
men who composed the Crews of those years. * * * If a 
medical man of experience warrants a young man sound 
(and this ought always to be required, even in self-de^ 
fence, to prevent the probability of a man's breaking 
down in training), I do believe he would be far from 
likely to injure himself. 

"W. M. HOARE." 

Thetford, June^ 1869. 


Extracts from the letters of the surviving Members of 

the Cambridge Crew. 


I am very happy to be able to report myself in 

excellent health. I have not required the assistance of 

your profession during the last nine years, and, so far as 

I myself am concerned, I feel sure that I am a stronger 

man than I should have been if I had not rowed at 

Cambridge. I rowed in the Crews of 1861 and 1862, 

besides rowing a number of Races at Henley, in my 

College crew, and the usual College Races. In 1861 I 

rowed three Races in one day, all of them hard Races, 

and many of us thought the Henley Races even more 

severe than those at Putney, on account of the quick 


"G. H. Richards." 

Boston, United States, May^ 1871. 

" With regard to your questions, I had good oppor- 
tunity of judging of the effect of boating and training, 
as I was first Captain of the Lady Margaret. I think 
that if a man can train, boating does him good, aiid by 
training I mean pursuing such a system as will rid the 
body of what is really superfluous matter, purify the 
blood, and harden the muscles. * * ♦ 

** Personally I invariably got heavier in training. 
* * * I believe boating has done me a great deal of 
good. * ♦ ♦ One thing I have noticed about old Uni- 
versity Oars, and that is, if they get fever of any kind 
it is very likely to kill them. I think, however, it is 
possible that the constitutions which make a good Oar 
may be peculiarly liable to fever. 

"W. H. Tarleton." 

Birmingham, yune^ 1869. 


"In reply to your note, I beg to say that after leaving 
Cambridge I served eight years in the army, and have 
never suffered any ill effects from my training, which 
commenced in 1858 and was continued at intervals 
imtil 1862 for the University and other Boat-Races, 
and I believe myself to be perfectly sound at the present 

"Henry H. Collings." 

London, June^ 1871. 

" I rowed two Putney Races, and after the second 
was supposed to have injured myself. I was sent 
abroad, and finally went to India. * * * Four years 
very hard work, shooting in the Himalayas and Cashmere, 
have not brought out any further signs, and I had some 
roughish times out in those parts. My second year I 
took no tent and no bedj and slept on the ground on a 
waterproof sheet, finding no ill effects from hard moun- 
tain marching and bad food. * * ♦ I think that so far 
as lungs are concerned I am as sound as can be. 

"R. U. Penrose Fitzgerald." 

London, 1869. 




The Race of Saturday, April 12, 1862, resulted in an 
easy victory for Oxford, The Cambridge men rowed 
gallantly throughout. The day was very fine, but bitterly 
cold with a stiff north-easter, which was dead against the 
Crews in the latter part of the Race. The water was com- 
paratively calm, though the steamers, as usual, behaved 
disgracefully, throwing a heavy wash on the losing boat, 
and thereby deprived her of all chance of retrieving the 
day. The Race was rowed in 24 min. 41 sec, the 
winning Crew coming in 30 seconds ahead of their 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


W. B. Woodgate, Brasenose. 

O. S. Wynne, Ch. Ch. 

William B. R. Jacobson, Ch. Ch. 

R. Edward L. Burton, Ch. Ch. 

Allan Morrison, Balliol. 

A. R. Poole\ Trin. 

Charles Ridley Carr, Wadham. 

W. M. Hoare*, Exeter. 

Coxswain, F. E. Hopwood, Ch. Ch. 


P. Freeland Gorst, St John's, 
J. G. Chambers, 3rd Trin. 
Edward Sanderson, Corpus. 
Wm. Cecil Smyly, ist Trin. 

^ Rowed also in 1861. 


R. U. Penrose Fitzgerald \ Trin. Hall. 
Henry H. Collings\ 3rd Trin. 
J. G. Buchanan*, ist Trin. 
G. H. Richards^ ist Trin. 

Coxswain, F. H. Archer, Corpus. 

Effects of Training and Rowing on the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

4 II I 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew. 

" My own experience of rowing is that heart and 
lungs never suffer, with a man in real training, from 
rowing in a Crew. * * ♦ As to myself, not three weeks 
ago I was passed by an Insurance office as A i, in the 
doctor's own words, after I had told him what I had 
done. I believe I have rowed more than any other 

amateur or professional. 

London, Jidy^ 1871. 

"I don't think, as far as I am concerned, that having 

rowed once in the University Crew has done me any 


"Owen S. Wynne.'* 

Rhuabon, Dec. 187a. 

* Rowed also in 1861. 

^ Mr Buchanan died in 1870; his illness and death could in no way be 
traced to his rowing exertions. ' 



" Rowing never did me any harm as far as I know ; 
but then my father sent me to a doctor before rowing 
even in the Torpid, and he told me my heart was one 
of the most regular he ever heard, and that I might do 
anything I Hked without danger. Perhaps this may 
lead me to speak warmly of my favourite amusement; 
but I think it would be well if every man, at any rate 
before rowing at Putney, were to be examined by some 

As to my general health, I think rowing and training 
did me a great deal of good. 

" William B. R. Jacobson." 

London, May^ 1869. 

"As far as my rowing in the University Crew was 

concerned, my health is quite as good as it was 


" R. Edward L. Burton." 

Shrewsbury, January^ 1879. 

"In reply to your letter, in which you enquire 
whether I consider that my health has been damaged 
by having rowed (three times) in the Oxford and Cam- 
bridge Boat-Race, I must state that I cannot trace any 

bad effects to those exertions. 


"Allan Morrison.' 

Reading, May^ 1871. 

" My health up to this time, has not, as far as I can 
judge, been affected in the least degree by my rowing in 


the Putney Races of 1862 and 1863 ; but I have such a 
lively recollection of the state of extreme exhaustion I 
was often in two miles off the end of the course, and of 
the resolutions often formed never to touch an oar 
again, that I am by no means sure that my life is as 
good a one as it would have been had I never partaken 
in such immoderate exercise. That any one can go 
through such desperate heart-rending work without 
more or less impairing his vital powers, seems to me a 
very bold assertion to make; and I have often said that 
I should not wonder if I had taken 10 years off my 
life by over-tasking my powers of endurance on the 
river. But this is guess-work, you want facts. As I said 
before, I am all right as far as I know at present, and 
my experience is that of one whose chest was pronounced 
to be a pattern of all that a chest ought to be, and 
whose habits have always been* strictly temperate, and 
who never 'shirked' a stroke in training or in the Race. 
After the severest rows I always recovered immediately 
on stopping. 

"Charles Ridley Carr." 

Marlborough, ^unej 1869. 

• Extracts from the letters of the surviving Members of 

the Cambridge Crew. 

"In answer to your enquiries, I am happy to be 
able to state that as far as I know I have suffered in no 
way whatever by rowing the University Race ; I think, 
considering that I rowed almost every College Race at 
Cambridge for four years, it would hardly be fair to 
lay any ill effects (supposing I had received them) to 
the one Race, which after all is not much more trying 

u. o. 17 


than others. Whilst I know many men whose health 
has materially improved with rowing, I do not know 
any that have been injured by it. I never felt better in 
my life than when in training, and I now miss the hard 
exercise I was so fond of. 

" P. Freeland Gorst." 

Melton Mowbray, June^ 1869. 

" I have never experienced any ill effects from row- 
ing, running, walking or swimming 200 Races in which 
I have competed. * ♦ * 

" J. G. Chambers.'* 

London, May^ 187 1. 

" In answer to your question I beg to state that in 
my opinion the training and exertion demanded of men 
who engage in the University Race, are not of so trying 
a nature that in numerous instances the constitution is 
liable to be permanently injured. In a few cases it may 
be an injurious, in many, and I think in my own case, 
it has been a highly beneficial exercise. I do not know 
that any of my friends or contemporaries have suffered 
from their exertions in rowing in the University Crew. 

"Edward Sanderson.** 

Acton, Augusf, 1869. 

'* You ask me whether the rowing and training at 
Cambridge has had a good or bad effect upon my 
health, I can confidently say that I have never felt any 
bad effects from it. Since I took to rowing I have 
never been confined to my bed, or even to the house for 


a Single day, and have never felt a pain that I could 
connect with it ; on the contrary, I believe it has done 
me much good, both physically and morally. * * * 
During the latter years of my stay at Cambridge I was 
very frequently in hard training. The principal Races for 
which I trained after I got into my Club, ist Boat (ist 
Trinity), were i86i, May Races (Head of the River), 
•Henley Grand Challenge, Ladies' Plate Eight-Oars, 
Stewards' and Visitors' Fours (all won); November, 
University Fours (dead heat with Trin. Hall), December, 
Trial Eights (lost) ; 1862, April, rowed against Oxford 
at Putney (lost). May Races (third on the river) ; Uni- 
versity Pairs (lost), November, University Fours (2nd) ; 
1863, March, rowed against Oxford at Putney (lost) ; 
June, Henley Grand Challenge, Ladies' Plate Eights, 
Stewards' and Visitors' Fours (all lost) ; out of training 
I rowed in numerous University Scratch-Fours, and in 

Club Trial Eights, &c. 

"W. CSmyly." 
Manchester, July, 1871. 


The University Race of 1863 was rowed from Mort- 
lake to Putney to take advantage of the tide, on 
Saturday the 28th of March, at about half-past ten. 
The two Boats were fairly started, the wind was 
highly favourable, and the distance was covered in 23 
minutes 6 seconds by the winning Crew ; Oxford gain- 
ing an easy victory over her adversary, and the Race 
being virtually over before Barnes Bridge was passed. 



The names of the Crews were as follows : 


Robert Shepherd, Brasenose. 
F. Hume Kelly, Univ. 
William B. R. Jacobson^ Ch. Ch. 
W. B. Woodgate\ Brasenose, 
Allan Morrison ^ Balliol. 
William Awdry, Balliol. 
Charles Ridley Carr\ Wadham. 
W. M. Hoare', Exeter. 

Coxswain, F. Hopwood, Ch. Ch. 

J. Clarke Hawkshaw, 3rd Trin. 
. Wm. Cecil Smyly*, ist Trin. 
R. H. Morgan, Emm. 
J. Bowstead Wilson, Pembroke. 
Claude H. La Mothe, St John's. 
Robert A. Kinglake, 3rd Trin. 
J. G. Chambers*, 3rd Trin. 
John Stanning, ist Trin. 

Coxswain, F. H. Archer, Corpus. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

2 13 I 

Extracts front the letters of tJie Oxford Crew. 

**From my own personal experience in rowing in 
Boat-Races at Oxford, Henley, Putney and elsewhere, 
I think all injuries from rowing may be classed under 

^ Rowed also in 1863. ' Rowed also in 1861. 


three heads :— i. From accidents. — 2. From over- 
training. — 3. From under training. I myself strained 
a muscle through a quick jerk to right the boat in 
stormy weather, with a strong wind off shore. This 
strain incapacitated me from rowing in 1864 as re- 
quested, but I feel no ill effects from it now. 

" Robert Shepherd.'* 

BiLLESDON, Sept. 1 87 1. 

"I can only say with regard to myself I rowed two 
years at Putney, besides three years in the College 
Eight, and at Henley, and have- sincie then undergone 
some very hard roughing in South America. I am as 
sound as possible. 

« F. Hume Kelly." 

London, D£c. 1871. 

*'I rowed in the years 1863 and 1864, but on the first 
occasion I was not in the Crew for the whole of the 
training, having been put again into the Boat ten days 
before the Race, after comparative rest for three weeks. 
I never had the trial of a hard race with Cambridge, but 
probably it would not have been much greater than that 
which we had in 1863 with a picked Crew of watermen, 
who kept just in front of us over the whole course. 
Rowing has not, so far as I know, made any difference 
in my health, and though for a considerable time I was 
more dependent than many are on regular and hard 
exercise, even that effect seems to have passed away. 
* * * I cannot judge of after effects on lungs or heart, 
except from my own case, in which they appear to be 


nil, but I was told (by my medical adviser) that with 
my slow circulation and very expansive chest, there was 
nothing to fear. ♦ * * I never was in better condition 
myself than at my first University Race, when I had 
lO days of training, then 3 weeks of rest, and then 10 
days of very hard work and training. * * ♦ I think that 
in the main, rowing at Oxford is the best and healtlfiest 
of the r^^lar amusements ; and having rowed for six 
years consecutively in a Collie Eight-Oar, and known 
a very large proportion of the rowing men, I can speak 
with some knowledge of what passed between i860 and 


**Wm. Awdry." 
Winchester, yufy, 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of the Cambridge Crew. 

"I know of no case of a man who has rowed in the 
University Race who can be shewn to have suffered in 
health solely on that account. There are many who 
would be pointed out as examples of the ill effect of 
rowing, but it will generally be found that there is 
more reason in considering their ill-health as the result 
of the life they have led when out of training. As re- 
gards my own Crew, I am not aware that any of them 
are much the worse for rowing ; they were all powerful 
men. ♦ ♦ * The good resulting from rowing outweighs, 
in my opinion, the evils of it. It teaches men to put a 
moral restraint upon themselves, and leads many to con- 
sider their health, who would probably never otherwise 
have thought of it. 

"J. Clarke Hawkshaw." 

Hull, June, 1859. 


'* I have great pleasure in informing you that though 
I was in hard training seven out of the nine terms I was 
at Cambridge, and rowed many hard and close Races, I 
have.never felt any the worse for it in any way. * * * 
I was just 20 years old when I rowed in the 'Varsity.' 

" R. Herbert Morgan." 

Blandford, Aprils 187 1. 

" I myself rowed in the Race of 1863, and during the 
four years which I spent in Cambridge I knew all the 
'Varsity Oars' of my own time, and also many more 
who had been there before me, and I cannot mention 
to you a single case where I have known one of them to 
be permanently injured (or injured at all) by their train- 
ing or rowing in the Race. 

"J- BowsTEAD Wilson." 

Bromsgrove, May^ 1869. 

"In reply to your letter I am happy to say that I 
have not in the least suffered from my rowing, either on 
the Cam or on the Thames ; I am at this moment per- 
fectly sound in every respect, and do not find as yet 
any evil effects from such strains upon the constitution 
as every one must undergo who is ambitious of distinc- 
tion in aquatic sports. ♦ * * I rowed in the year 1863, 
No. 5, at 12 St. 3 lbs., and now my weight is nearly 
15 St If weight of body be a criterion of health and 
physical vigour, then you may consider that I have not 
suffered much harm by my exertions on the Cam. 

" Claude H. La Mothe." 

Galatz, Junet 187 1. 


" I began to row at 10 years old and have rowed 
regularly from that time till the last two years, and now 
have an occasional race in the Leander, to which I 
belong. I was in the Eton Eight at 16, rowed three 
years in that, rowed as a freshman in the C. U. B. C. at 
Putney and did so for four years. In fact for those four 
years, from the isth of October until the end of June, 
I was rowing almost every day. In the summer I have 
occasionally knocked up with a sore throat, but have 
never broken down in training in my life, and have from 
first to last rowed more than 140 Races. 

"Robert A. Kinglake.*' 

London, Jum, 1869. 

" I am very happy to be able to say that, so far as 
I know, I have not received any injury at all from 
rowing. Having not yet arrived at the age when a man, 
as it is said, must be either a fool or a physician, I 
cannot speak with absolute confidence as to whether 
there may not be some terrible disease lurking in my 
system though entirely unsuspected by me ; but I can 
in all honesty say this, if I have sustained any injury I 
do not know it, and since I rowed in 1863 I have been 
in tolerably hard work, but have never had a single 
day's illness during the time. 

"John Stanning." 

Haluweix, Aprily 1871. 






The University Race of 1864 was one of peculiar 
interest, as in the long list of aquatic struggles, the win- 
ning Boat had in ten Races borne Cambridge colours, 
and in the remaining ten the dark blue of Oxford. 
Victory however was destined once more to crown the 
efforts of the older University. Saturday the 19th of 
March, 1864, was a lovely day, and more genial than is 
usually the case ; the water was calm, and the wind 
though slight, very favourable. The Race was rowed 
in a shorter time than that of the preceding year, oc- 
cupying only 2 1 min. 40 sec. The Cambridge Boat came 
in 26 seconds behind her opponent. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


C. P. Roberts, Trin. 
William Awdry\ Balliol. 
F. Hume Kelly \ Univ. 
J. C. Parson, Trin. 

William B. R. Jacobson^ Ch. Ch. 
A. E. Seymour, Univ. 
M. Meredith Brown, Trin. 

D. Pocklington', Brasenose. 

Coxswain, C. R. W. Tottenham, Ch. Ch. 

* Rowed also in 1863. ' Rowed also in 1862. 

I * Mr Pocklington died in 187Q. He considered himself rather benefited 

I than injured by his rowing exertions. 

266 university oars. 


J. Clarke Hawkshaw^, 3rd Trin. 
E. V. Pigott, Corpus. 
H. S. Watson, Pembroke. 
W. W. Hawkins, St John's. 
Robert A. Kinglake*, 3rd Trin. 
Geo. Borthwick, ist Trin. 
D. Fenwick Steavenson, Trin. Hall. 
J. R. Selwyn, 3rd Trinity. ♦ 

Coxswain, F. H. Archer, Corpus. 

Effects of Training and Rowing on the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 


Extracts from tJie letters of tlie Oxford Crew, 

" Boating was my chief recreation at Oxford, and I 
went into training 10 times for various Races, and I 
look back upon those periods, as having not only left 
me without injury, but been the source of much strength 
to me in every way. I was brought up to think that 
my chest was weak, and forbidden to take any violent 
exercise at school, such as running; and when I went up 
to College I was looked on as a very weakly fellow, 
and not taken down in the boats for trial amongst the 
other freshmen until a ' Scratch four ' Race shewed that 
I might be made something of. I then rowed in the 
Torpid and in the Eight for succeeding years. I grew 
in height, breadth and strength. Sore throats, to which 

^ Rowed also in 1863. 


I had been very liable, and often had severely at school, 
left me, and my whole state of health improved. The 
* University Boat Race * is a trying one certainly, and 
the training severe, but I always made a point of being 
examined by a surgeon before entering on any severe 
course of preparation ; this I think every man ought to 
do, for his own sake and for the sake of the Crew in 
which he rows. I did not feel the exertion of the 
Oxford and Cambridge Race so much as the shorter 
Henley Course ; the time of year and the difference 
in temperature may partially account for it. * * * I 
know no instance in my own experience of a man who 
lived a temperate and pure life, without indulging in 
any excesses, who has been injured by training. * ♦ ♦ 
I look upon rowing as a most healthy and strengthening 
exercise in every way if the quantity is adapted to the 
constitution of him who goes in for it. 

" C. P. Roberts." 

, Bury, yunct 1869. 

"I really cannot tell you how far rowing affected 
ethers, but as far as I myself am concerned, I think 
that it did me considerably more good than harm. 

"J. C. Parson. 

Haddam, yune, 1869. 

" My general health always was and still is excel- 

"A. E. Seymour." 

Kidderminster, yuney 1869. 

• ] 


** I went to Radley to school in 1855. In 1857 1 b^an 
to row, and in due course became one of the school racing 
Crews. In 1863 I went to Oxford, where I rowed in the 
University Eight in 1864, 1865 and 1866, besides rowing 
in College Eights, and University Fours and Pairs for 
four years. I Towed at Henley three years, besides 
Paris, Kingston, Walton. I calculate I was in training 
for rowing more than four months in each of the eight 
years from 1858 to 1866. During that time I may 
safely say that I never was ill, and I am convinced the 
effect rowing had on my health was only salutary. 

*'M. Meredith Brown.'* 

London, Juncy 1872. 

Extracts from the letters of the Cambridge Crew. 

"I can truly say I have never experienced any 
effects from rowing but what are the most beneficial. 
During my training I was always conscious of enjoying 
an intensity of good health and general buoyancy which 
I have never experienced at any other time. During 
the years that have passed since I rowed (my years were 
1864 and 1865, for I rowed in two Races) I have never 
experienced the least ill effects ; on the contrary, what- 
ever vigour, whether physical or intellectual, I now 
enjoy, I attribute as much to the very healthy and 
steady life which I was compelled to live at Cambridge, 
as to any other cause. I feel, in fact, that I have 
derived nothing whatever but benefit from it. 

" E. V. PiGOTT." 
Malpas, Jutyt 1869. 


"I am glad to tell you that I have not experienced 
any ill effects from rowing, and indeed I can testify to 
its being most beneficial to myself. Since the time I 
rowed in the University Race I have enjoyed the best of 

'* H. S. Watson." 

Birmingham, A^/, 187 i. 

"I am thankful to be able to say that my health is 
usually very good, and, as far as I know has not been 
injured by my rowing labours. 

" W. W. Hawkins." 

DONCASTER, Mayt 187 1. 

" I have much pleasure in informing you that I do 
not know of a single instance in which permanent in- 
juries, or indeed any injuries, have resulted from rowing 
in the University Boat-Race. Personally I am, and 
always have been, in the enjoyment of most excellent 
health; and I attribute this, in no slight degree, to the 
training I underwent in my rowing days. I am inti- 
mately acquainted with many old Oarsmen, and I can 
safely say that a sounder, healthier set of men could not 
be found. 

"Geo. Borthwick." 

London, yunf, 1869. 

" I feel sure that for a man of sound limbs, lungs and 
heart, the training and rowing done whilst at the Uni- 
versityy even if he rows three years in his University 
Boat, does him good instead of harm. It keeps him 


from many pernicious habits, such as smoking, drinking, 
late hours, large suppers, &c. ♦ ♦ ♦ More than this, 
training gets men into a steady and regular habit of life 
at an early age. I think I may most confidently state 
that I know no more healthy body of men than 'Var- 
sity Oars/ I fear you will think me prejudiced, ♦ ♦ * 
but I most seriously think ' I have kept within the 

*' D. Fenwick Steavenson." 

London, May, 1869. 

** I feel no ill effects from much rowing. I know 
many instances of old University Oars who are now 
elderly men, and strong and hearty. 

« « » « « » 

"I am sure that if rowing were abolished from the 
Universities — and the curtailment of the Race would go 
far to do that — the men would do something infinitely 
worse for their constitutions, pockets and characters. 

«J. R. Selwyn.** 
Lichfield, May^ 1869. 




The University Race of ^865 took place on Satur- 
day, the 8th of April. The hour of starting was about 
one o'clock; the day had cleared into bright sunshine, 
and the contest for some considerable distance was very 
exciting ; but the slow, sure and steady swing of the 
Oxford Oars gradually told, and just beyond Chiswick 
church the Race was virtually over, as the Light Blues 
became disorganized, though their boat was barely four 
lengths astern at the winning post. 

The time was 21 minutes 24 seconds, being the 
fastest Race ever rowed by the Oxford Boat in a Uni- 
versity Race hitherto ; though Cambridge in 1846 
only took 21 minutes 5 seconds, and in 1858, 21 minutes 
23 seconds. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


R. Taunton Raikes, Merton. 
H. P. Senhouse, Ch. Ch. 
Edward F. Henley, Oriel. 
Gilbert Coventry, Pembroke 
Allan Morrison\ Balliol. 
Thomas Wood, Pembroke. 
Henry Schneider, Trinity. 
M. Meredith Brown', Trinity. 
Coxswain, C. R. W. Tottenham. 

1 Rowed also in 1862 and 1863. ' Rowed also in 1864. 



Herbert Watney, St John's. 
Meyrick H. L. Beebee, St John's. 
E. V. Pigott*, Corpus. 
Robert A. Kinglake', 3rd Trinity. 
D. Fenwick Steavenson*, Trin. Hall. 
Geb.'Borthwick^ 1st Trin. 
W. Russell Griffiths, 3rd Trin. 
C. B. Lawes, 3rd Trin. 
F. H. Archer, Corpus. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

8 • 7 I 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew. 

" I can only say that my experience, which now ex- 
tends over 8 years, and in particular instances a great 
deal longer, goes entirely to support those who believe 
that rowing generally is a healthy exercise, and that 
the training and exertion demanded of those who en- 
gage in the Oxford and Cambridge Race do not so try 
the constitution as to injure it permanently. I myself 
rowed in that Race in 1865 and 1866, and have been 
intimately acquainted with those who have taken part in 
it for eight years, and with some of the now prominent 
Oxford Oarsmen since 1856. During that time I have 

^ Rowed also in i864« ' Rowed also in 1863 and 1864. 


only known one instance of a man being permanently 
injured by the training. * * * I myself have never 
suffered any ill effects ; in fact, I was during the two 
periods of training heavier and more uniformly strong 
than I ever was before, or (except during periods of 
considerable physical exercise) have been since. For 
3 years I have now led a sedentary life in London, with 
a short holiday in the summer, and have during that 
time enjoyed uniform good health, the only perceptible 
difference being that I am thinner and lighter than when 
I indulged in the constant hard exercise of my Oxford 

*' R. Taunton Raikes." 

London, October ^ 1869. 

*' I myself rowed in the University Race in the years 
1865 and 1866; in fact, I have been constantly at it from 
1857 to 1866, and do not in any way feel that it has 
done me the slightest harm. The training time of 1865 
was very trying ; rain bringing snow ; cold high winds, 
and sometimes towards the end very hot days. * * * 
As far as the length of the Putney course is concerned I 
have no doubt it really takes more out of men than a 
shorter course, but for a quarter of an hour after the Race 
is over I have always felt more exhausted after the 
Henley ij mile than the Putney 4 J miles. 

^'H. P. Senhouse." 

Maryport, June^ 1869. 

" I am glad to say, in answer to your enquiries, that 
I have never experienced in any way any evil effects 

U. O. • 18 


from having rowed in the Inter-University Matches of 
1865 and 1866, and that my health since then has been 
quite as good if not better than before. 

" Edward F. Henley." 

London, yz/ff/*, 1871. 

"As far as I can I will give you a true account about 
the Oxford training and its effects. With regard to 
myself it did me an immense deal of good, I am con- 
fident ; I am as strong as a man well can be, and I have 
never had an hour's illness since the Race, that I know 
of My height is 5 ft. \\\ in., I now weigh 14 st. 2 lbs., 
and I am 43 inches round the chest. * * * I can also 
assure you that in my opinion the training for the long 
course does not hurt one like the short courses that are 
rowed up at Oxford ; and for this reason, you have not 
the same power of properly and steadily expanding your 
chest as you do over the long course; added to which, 
I consider that if you row in the Varsity Boat you must 
(as a rule) have been scratched out of the 'weeds' who 
row on the short course. * * * There is one thing I 
have forgotten to say, which is, that I never rowed until 
I went to Oxford at 19. 

"Gilbert Coventry." 

Worcester, June^ 1869. 

"I rowed in the Oxford University Eight v, Cam- 
bridge, 1865, and am very pleased to tell you that it 
lias not injured my health in the smallest degree, 

'^Thomas Wood." 

Oxoi^,A/n7, 1871* 


"* * * I may state that as far as I myself am con- 
cerned, I am able to discover no particular symptoms, 
either good, bad or indifferent, specially attributable to 
rowing. I say 'specially,* because in all probability if 
I had not taken plenty of exercise, either in that form 
or some other, my constitution would not have been 
half so good as I have every reason to believe it to be 
at the present moment. 

"Henry Schneider." 

Queensland, October, 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of the Cambridge Crew, 

" In answer to your letter as to the purely physical 
effects of the University Races, my belief is that if a 
man is medically examined before rowing, so that it 
can be certified that he has no structural defect in any 
of his organs, and if he is of a reasonable age, not less 
than 19, and has had some rowing previously, say for 
one year, so that what are called his 'rowing muscles' 
are set, no apparent harm is likely to accrue. 

" Herbert Watney." 

Cambridge, Aprils 1871. 

"In reply to your enquiries, I beg to inform you that 
I do not think I have suffered in any way from rowing, 
either when up at Cambridge or out here, where I have 
been for five years; I have rowed a good deal in this 
country, about seven months out of the twelve in each 
year, and in some half-dozen races." 

"Meyrick H. L. Beebee." 

Calcutta, June^ 1871. 

1 8— 2 


"I know of no case within my personal knowledge 
where any harm has happened to a man's constitution 
from rowing in the University Boat. * * * I do not 
really think that a man with an ordinary constitution 
and with ordinary care is likely to suffer any harm 
from rowing in a University Crew ; on the contrary, I 
think he may find it very beneficial to his health. 

**W. Russell Griffiths." 

London, yum, 1869. 

"You may perhaps have heard that I was more 
than usually successful in rowing as well as running. 
* * * I went immediately after my last Race into a 
studio, where I have been for three years without one 
day's even moderate exercise. * * * But I have not 
found any evil effects at present. * * * It is plain that 
rowing without racing would be much healthier for 
every one, but that cannot be.* * * You say, is the 
constitution in numerous instances liable to be injured? 
Yes, it is liable; but to the question is it injured in 
numerous instances ? I should answer, no ; in very few, 
even indirectly : but this can only be a guess guided by 
a few years' experience. * * * In my opinion nothing 
would give you reliable data, but the actual longevity 
of University Crews over a period of many years. 

" C. B. Lawes." 

Berlin, August, 1869. 



1866. . 

The Race of Saturday, March 24, i866, took place 
at an unusually early hour in consequence of the state 
of the tide. The start was successfully accomplished 
shortly before 8 A.M., and a most exciting race ensued. 
The water was somewhat lumpy, and the wind foul, but 
the rival Crews rowed in good form, while the chances of 
Cambridge were watched with breathless interest by 
her numerous adherents. The issue of the Race was still 
uncertain, when within a short distance of its termination 
the untimely appearance of a large barge right across 
the Cambridge course somewhat interfered with the 
even tenor of her way, and Oxford, drawing slowly but 
surely ahead, completed her 13th victory over the light 
blues, passing the flag-boat some 1 5 seconds before her 
adversary ; the time being unusually slow, owing to the 
commencement of the ebb tide, 25 mins. 35 sees. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 

R. Taunton Raikes*, Merton. 
Fred. Crowder, Brasenose. 
W. L. Freeman, Merton. 
F. Willan, Exeter. 
Edward F. Henley*, Oriel. 
W. W. Wood, Univ. 
H. P. SenhouseS Ch. Ch. 
M. Meredith Brown*, Trin. 

Coxswain, C. W. R. Tottenham, Ch. Ch. 

* Rowed also in 1865. • Rowed also in 1864 and 1865. 



John Still, Caius. 

J. R. Selwyn^ 3rd Trin. 

J. Ulick Bourke, ist Trin. 

Hugh J. Fortescue, Magd. 

D. Fenwick Steavenson^, Trin. Hall. 

Robert A. Kinglake', 3rd Trin. 

Herbert. Watney", St John's. 

W. Russell Griffiths', 3rd Trin. 

Coxswain, A. Forbes, St John's, 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. Injured. 

8 7 I 

Extracts from tlie letters of the Oxford Crew, 

" I myself have rowed twice in the University Race 

(in 1866 and 1867), besides many other College Races at 

Oxford, and have no hesitation in saying that in my 

case I found that I suffered more from the College Races 

than from either of the University Races. 

« » « « « 

"As to the University Race, my opinion is that if a 
man having a good constitution to start upon, trains 
strictly throughout the whole seven weeks usually set 
apart for that purpose, he is not likely to experience 
any ill effects from the Race. 

^ Rowed also in 1864. ' Rowed also in 1863, 1864, and 1865. 

' Rowed also in 1865. 


"For the last few years I am not aware of any one 
in the Oxford Crews being permanently or even seriously 
injured by the University Race. 

"Fred. Crowder." 

Reading, ^M^, 1869. 

**When I rowed in 1866 my weight was 12 st 7lbs.; 
the term after, when I rowed in our College Eight, I was 
nearly 13 stone; and when I won the sculls the same 
term I was 13 st. 3lbs. I came out here in 1866, and I 
have never felt the slightest effects from my training; 
I weigh now i S st. 7 lb., and have gone up to 16 st. 6 lbs.; 
so you see I hav^ not been very ill since I rowed. I 
used to go in for foot-racing when at Cheltenham and won 
several long Races, running one year second in a two- 
mile Race picking up 50 stones, and half an hour or so 
afterwards running another two-mile Race, when I came 
in second also ; so you see I was accustomed to hard 
training. When I went up to Oxford I also belonged to 
the Boat-club at Cheltenham, and won several Races. 
I rowed stroke to the four, and rowed the first Race 
between Cheltenham and Shrewsbury, which we won. 

"W. L. Freeman." 

India, yune, 1872. 

'* I think I may be considered a good subject or 
example in regard to rowing, for I imagine I have rowed 
as many Races as any man of my age. I do not exactly 
know how many Races I have rowed, extending over a 
period from the spring of 1863 to August, 1869. * * ♦ 
But I rowed in Races at Henley Regatta every year for 
seven years in succession; and the chief Races in which 


I have rowed are Oxford and Cambridge four times, 
Grand Challenge at Henley Regatta four times, Oxford 
and Harvard, U. S., both the Eight and Four-oared 
Race at the International Regatta at St Cloud, 1867, 
Ladies' Plate at Henley, &c. But I will not inflict 
any more of my deeds upon you; however, I think for 
the seven years I was rowing as constantly in Races as 
any man ever has done. Now with regard to my health, 
I can only tell you facts; I have never felt any ill effects 
from rowing. * ♦ * I hope you will not think that all 
this recapitulation of my rowing deeds is mere egotism. 
I only meant it to shew that I have at any rate been 
pretty well 'put through the mill' (as they say on the 
turf), and am therefore a good specimen of the rowing 
man, either for good or evil report. 

"F. WlLLAN." 
London, Aprils 187 1. 

Extracts from the letters of the Cambridge Crew. 

" I may safely say that as yet I have felt no bad 
effects whatever from my rowing ; but on the contrary, 
c6nsider it to be the source of much of the good health 
I now enjoy. In my last race, 1869, being called upon 
to row without training I certainly expected to suffer 
for it, but I have not felt any harm at all; my wind 
was in very good order at the time, from playing foot- 
ball, which I believe saved me; for rowing a quick 
stroke in the light racing-boats there is no doubt that 
the lungs must be quite sound, and if so, I have never 
heard of any harm being done. Of course strength 
makes a boat go, but good lungs will carry most over 


the course somehow. I was always very careful in 
going out of training gradually, generally going a short 
walking tour after the Race. I have known of bad 
results, but in each case the man either started unsound 
or went into heavy dissipation after training was over. 

"John Still." 

Lichfield, May, 187 1. 

" I know of no men with whom I am individually 
acquainted who have done themselves the slightest 
harm (that I am aware of) by rowing in the Varsity 
Race. I think that very often men who have been rowing, 
and therefore taking hard exercise, on coming up to live 
in London and taking little or no exercise for a short 
time (say the first year or so), feel the sudden change; 
but I cannot understand how rowing, to a man who is 
not consumptive, can do him any harm. * * * Indivi- 
dually I never was in better health than while rowing, 
and only wish I had time to row now, as I am sure it 
does a man good instead of harm. 

"J. Ulick Bourke," 

London, Jitne, 1869. 

" I am afraid I can give you very little information 
as to my friends or contemporaries who rowed in the 
Putney Race. With regard to myself, though I was not 
thought to have stood the training well, yet I do not 
think that I have suffered the least permanent injury 
from it ; but I am, I think, quite as strong and healthy 
as I was before I rowed. A great change appeared to 
me almost always to be seen in a man a few months 
after he rowed in the Putney Race, as almost all ap- 
peared stronger and more powerful men, and at the 


same time by no means less healthy, nor have I heard 
of any of them who have suffered since from their 

"Hugh J. Fortescue." 

Kidderminster, July, 1869. 


RAGE, 1867. 

The Race of Saturday, April 13, 1867, will long be 
remembered as one of the most exciting which was 
ever rowed between the two Universities. As was the 
case in 1856, the winning Boat only led by half a length 
at the finish ; and though the wind was foul, the water 
lumpy, and the tide on the turn, the distance was covered 
in 22 minutes 40 seconds, marvellously quick considering 
the opposing elements ; the rowing of both Crews being 
really splendid. 

The names of the two Crews were as follows : 


W. Paget Bowman, Univ. 
J. H. Fish, Worcester. 

E. S. Carter, Worcester. 
W. W. Woods Univ. 
James C. Tinn6, Univ. 
Fred. Crowder\ Brasenose. 

F. WillanS Exeter. 

R. G. Marsden, Merton. 

Coxswain, C. R. W. Tottenham, Ch. Ch. 

^ Rowed also in 1866. 

university oars. 283 


W. Herbert Anderson, ist Trin. 
John M. Collard, St John's. 
J. UHck Bourke^ ist Trin. 
Hon. J. H. Gordon^ ist Trin, 
F. E. Cunningham, King's. 
John Still\ Caius. 
Herbert Watney', St John's. 
W. Russell Griffiths*, 3rd Trin. 
Coxswain, A. Forbes, St John's. 

Effects of Training and Rowing on the Crews, 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

II 5 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew. 

'* As far as my experience goes, the question whether 
or no permanent injury results from rowing in the Oxford 
and Cambridge Race, depends almost entirely upon the 
previous constitutional soundness of the men who are 
selected to row. * * * Judging from my own case, I 
can say (as far as I know) with perfect truth that I went 
into training for the Race sound, and I am as sound as 
a bell at the present moment ; and perhaps my testi- 
mony may have the greater weight, inasmuch as besides 
rowing against Cambridge, I have led anything but an 
inactive life at Oxford. I have rowed three years at 
Henley, twice rowing in the winning Crews of G. C. C, 
L. C. C. and V. C. C. Races. I have rowed (as you 
have) four years in the University College Eight, and 

^ Rowed also in 1866. } Rowed also in 1865 and 1866. 


I have rowed three times in the winning Four at Oxford. 
Besides this I have filled up the intervals with running, 
not without success. Out of 17 terms spent at Oxford, 
I was in a state of training during some part of 15, that 
is, all except my first and last, and I can only say that 
I never felt better than when in a state of training. It 
is perhaps too early for me to say positively that I 
have received no injury from rowing, but I can safely 
affirm that nothing has appeared yet, and, as far as 
mortal man can judge, nothing is likely to appear. 

"W. Paget Bowman." 

London, 7««<r, 1869. 

" For the health of my friends I should not, in their 

absence, feel inclined to answer. Mine own could 

scarcely be affected by a single year's rowing in the 


"J. H. Fish." 

Oxford, ^une, 1869. 

"I have just returned from Australia, and therefore 
only now received your note. * * * In my own mind 
I am convinced that far from the University Race 
doing me or anybody else engaged any harm, if even 
moderately careful, it is calculated to do very much good ; 
and I am confident if I had not undergone what I had 
done in that Race and previous training, I should not 
have got over my illness (pleurisy) as well as I have. 
* * * I speak for myself when I say that in no University 
Race did I feel half the exhaustion that I always did in 
the College Eights, that is, if we rowed the whole course, 
(ij miles), without making our bump. I believe the 


system of training in Oxford, of course I mean in the 
case of the University Crew, is so perfect that men are 
generally in capital condition on the day, and not over- 
worked in the practices, which is t/te great thing in 
training. This is what I felt in my case both years I 
rowed, and I must say that I felt very much better all 
the time of training than ever I did before, and cer- 
tainly never felt in the least degree worse for it after- 
wards, as one might have expected with the reaction. 

'^E. S. Carter." 

York, August, 1869. 

"My own impression as to whether the 'Varsity 
training' is or is not injurious to men is very much the 
same as I daresay you have heard from others, namely 

" I. If a man be sound to start, with, 
" 2. Trains honestly, 

" 3. Does not play the fool when he comes out 
of training, 
he will come to no harm. 

" Speaking for myself, I can say that I never was in 
such perfect health and comfort as when in training at 

"James C. Tinne." 

Oxford, yune, 1869. 

**In answer to your enquiries as to the effect of 
training for, and rowing in the University Race, I must 
first give my own experience, of which at least I may 
be sure. As far as I can judge myself, rowing has done 
me no harm. I never in my life enjoyed such exube* 


rant health as when training for the Putney Race. So 
much so that I have often experienced a feeling of per- 
fect health at such times, which is almost peculiar to 
training. I have heard other rowing men observe this to- 
wards the end of a long training. * * * To conclude, I 
may say that the University Oarsmen with whom I am 
acquainted are almost, without exception, uninjured by 
their labours, that is, as far as I can judge myself by 
observation and some little attention I have given to the 

subject for some years, 

" R. G. Marsden." 

Harwich, June, 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of the surviving Members of 

the Cambridge Crew, 

*' In answer to your letter, I may confidently say 
that I do not think I have received any bad effects from 
rowing, and I am all the more pleased to give my evi- 
dence in support of that much maligned pastime. * * * 
I many a time feel the great advantage of having spent 
my leisure time in rowing ; it makes one feel so much 
more compact, so hard and hardy, and any one who 
has rowed knows how much perseverance it requires 
and developes. 

" W. Herbert Anderson." 

Ceylon, June, 187 1. 

"I rowed in 1867, the year when neither Boat was 
clear of the other during the whole Race. To begin 
with, it is my opinion that the Race is not of so trying a 
character that in numerous instances the constitution is 
liable to be injured. I believe this, judging from my 


own case, and all those of my own contemporaries who 
have rowed that long course. My health has been 
vastly improved by rowing. I was quite a weed when I 
went up to the University, and now am very strong and 
well, and much heavier and increased in girth round the 
chest. This has been the fact with all my friends. Of 
my own Crew one met his death by an accident, all 
the rest are in no way altered except for good. 

"John M. Collard." 

Rugby, yune, 1869, 

Personally I have not suffered the least ill effects 
from rowing in a University Boat. So far as actual 
rowing is concerned, I do not think that it is in any way 
injurious to the constitution, and I cannot call to mind 
any men who have suffered in consequence of it. 

'*F. E. Cunningham." 

London, June, 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of friends and relations. 

'* The Hon, J. H. Gordon^ a universal favourite and a 
very plucky Oar, met with a fatal gun accident which 
caused his untimely death on Wednesday, the 14th of 
February, 1868.'' 

"He never suffered in any way from the training and 
rowing connected with the University Race." 




The University Race of 1868 was not one of much 
interest, the style of rowing in either Boat being inferior 
to that of the preceding year, though Oxford, from her 
well-known slow and steady stroke, secured herself the 
victory before half the course was over. There was no 
wind, and the water being very calm the time occupied 
in the Race was the shortest hitherto recorded, 21 
minutes, Cambridge being six lengths behind. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


W. D. Benson, Balliol. 
Alf. C. Yarborough, Lincoln. 
Roberts Ross, (of Bladensberg,) Exeter. 
R. G. Marsden^ Merton.. 
James C. Tinnd^ Univ. 
F. Willan ', Exeter. 
E. S. Carters Worcester. 
S. D. Darbishire, Balliol. 
Coxswain, C. R. W. Tottenham, Ch. Ch. 


W. H. Andersons ist Trin. 

J. P. Nichols, 3rd Trin. 

James G. Wood, Emm. 

W. H. Lowe, Christ's. 

H. Trafford Nadin, Pembroke. 

W. F. MacMichael, Downing. 

John Still*, Caius. 

W. J. Pinckney, ist Trin. 

Coxswain, T. D. Warner, Trin. Hall. 

^ Rowed also in 1867. ' Rowed also in 1866 and 1867. 


Effects of Training and Rowing upon tlie Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

13 3 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew. 

*' I am at present in the enjoyment of perfect health, 
and have been so for many years, so that I feel no 
effects from the long course of training for aquatic races 
which I have undergone. The last seven years I have 
been constantly trained in the summer ; the last four, 
during which I have been at Oxford, I have trained 
nearly all the time, the summer and winter vacations of 
course excepted. I feel quite as strong as ever I did, 
and shake off any little complaint as quickly as can be 
expected from anyone. 

^'W. D. Benson.'' 

Wales, April ^ 187 1. 

" I and one or two others of this Crew have rowed 
ever since we have been at Oxford almost without ces- 
sation. Since October last I have only missed about 
eight weeks from rowing or training for one Race or 
another, and do not feel any ill effects from it. Our 
Race against Harvard comes off to-day, and the whole 
Crew are, and have been all through the seven weeks 
training, in excellent health. 

''Alf. C. Yarborough." 

Putney, August 27, 1869. 
U. O. 19 


"I am very glad to hear that you are going to take 
this matter in hand, you having rowed yourself, and not 
being too old yet to sympathize with youths and their 
pastimes, will have a better chance of coming to a satis- 
factory and trustworthy conclusion than others who 
have talked and written a great deal without really 
knowing anything about it. * * * As to myself I can 
confidently say that the rowing and training have done 
me a great deal of good. I have always been very well 
during training, and the more I row and train, the 
stronger and healthier I seem to get. In this year's 
Crew we were all quite well, and as yet none have ex- 
perienced any evil consequences. * * * If my testimony 
is of any weight, I can assure you that, as far as my 
experience goes, the 'Varsity Race ' and the training for 
it is not injurious; but it is when men row continually 
in Races, both in training and out, or when they keep in 
training too long, or break it too suddenly, that they 
injure themselves. 

" S. D. Darbishire." 

Oxford, May^ 1S69. 

Extracts from the letters of the Cambridge Crew. 

*'I have much pleasure in answering the letter I re- 
ceived from you on the subject of my experience of the 
effects of training and rowing, 

"All I can say is, that the whole time I was rowing I 
was in as good health as possible ; that I have nevei; 
experienced any ill effects from the training for the 
University Race, and think that both the rowing and 
training were very beneficial to me. 

"J. P. Nichols." 

London, January^ 1873, 


" I believe I may safely say that I never passed two 

months in more perfect health (except a slight cold for 

a couple of days) than I did during the training for the 

University kace; I was then in my sixth year at the 

University, and had regularly engaged in Boat-Races and 

Regattas during the whole of my University career, and 

therefore I suppose have done as much, if not more, 

rowing than most men of my age. At the same time I 

was always engaged in hard study, and in fact at the 

time I rowed at Putney I was a fellow of my College; 

so the two things combined, you will say, ought to 

have damaged me if anybody. * * * The opinion I 

have formed as above is not a mere prejudice, but based 

upon my own observations during the many years in 

which of course I formed the acquaintance of a large 

number of rowing men. 

"James G. Wood." 

London, July, 1S69. 

"All I can tell you is, that I think that rowing has 
done me good rather than harm, and that I am never 
so well as when I take a great deal of rowing exercise. 

"W, H. Lowe." 

Cambridge, May^ 1871. 

r " I may state, to begin with, that I rowed No. S in 

the Cambridge Boat of 1868, and that I am perfectly 

I certain I sustained no permanent or even temporary 

injury from so doing. During my College life I rowed 
almost every day, and I am certain I gained health and 
strength by it,s except in the May terms; every May 

I term for three years I rowed in our first Boat, and was 

19 — 2 


made more or less ill * * * by the absurd system of 
training insisted on by the captains of small Colleges. 

♦ ♦ * The training for the University Race was as 
good and sensible as the College was bad and ridiculous. 
Our food was constantly changed ; on Sundays, for in- 
stance, we had fish and hare and were only allowed a 
very light meal before going to bed. * * * I mention 
all this to shew that I firmly believe that, be the dis- 
tance one mile or four, everything depends upon the 
training beforehand, whether injury will result or no. 

* * * My opinion, founded on personal experience, is, 
that a healthy man will sustain no injury, permanent or 
temporary, from the training for or rowing in the Inter- 
University Boat-Race. I may add that I know many 
men who have rowed against Oxford, and not one has 
ever complained of injury. 

"H. Trafford Nadin." 

Derby, June, 1869. 

^'I did not go up to the University till I was twenty, 
which is rather later than most men, and I knew nothing 
of rowing till I went up. For the five years immediately 
preceding I had been in continual bad health, suffering 
greatly from head-ache, tooth-ache, &c. ; I believe these 
were chiefly caused by want of exercise. On going to 
College I took steadily to rowing, and have found the 
most beneficial results arising from, it. * * ♦ I have 
found myself in every way stronger and healthier. * * ♦ 
The work you are undertaking will, I am convinced, 
prove that rowing is one of the most, if not the most, 
healthy of exercises. 

''W. F. MacMichael." 

Colchester, August^ 1869. 


"I rowed in the Oxford and Cambridge Race in 
1868, and a good deal besides in College Races, so I am 
very glad to tell you my own experience as to the effect 
of training and rowing on the constitution. I may 
mention, first, that it is a common mistake among people 
who know little or nothing about rowing, to think that 
the Inter-University Race is a much greater trial and 
tax upon the constitution than Races for head of the 
river or at Henley, &c. * * * I had rowed short Races 
often before I was called on to practise at Putney, and 
found I could always last to the end in them, but felt 
very anxious as to how I should hold out over the four 
and a half miles; but I found that I soon became ac- 
customed to the greater length of the course, and did 
not find it more trying on the whole than the shorter 
ones. * * * As regards myself, I may say that I con- 
sider Boat-Racing to have done me unmitigated good. 
Before I took to rowing much I was far from strong, 
and never thought that I should have been able to have 
raced, but I got stronger as I went on, and always 
felt better when in training than at any other time. 
I used to be subject tq frequent attacks of asthma, 
which I imagined would have entirely prevented my 
taking part in any important Race, but I soon found 
that when in training I could throw off the attacks 
with* such ease, that only once was I incovenienced by 
them, and on that occasion I was not prevented from 
rowing the Race. * * * As regards the University Race 
in which I took part, I can safely say that I never 
remember to have felt so well and strong as I did 
during the fortnight of our stay at Putney preceding 
the Race, and that so far from feeling any ill effects 
from it afterwards, I was the better for it. * * * 


m^M I II ■ ■ I III ■ ■! I I I - ■ — •- 

"Among those of my friends who have rowed in the 
Race I do not know any who are in any way injured 
by it. 

" W. J. PlNCKNEY." 
Ludlow, Jufyt 1869* 



The last Race which I have to record, namely, that 
of the 17th of March, 1869, was also the swiftest upon 
record, being rowed in the short space of 20 minutes 
5 seconds. It must, however, be remembered that the 
wind and tide were highly favourable, and the waters 

The Cambridge men rowed with great pluck, but 
fortune once more smiled upon the Dark Blue ; and 
Oxford, winning the Race by three clear lengths, was 
enabled to add a sixteenth victory to her already long 
list of aquatic achievements. 

It is satisfactory to be able to state that Cambridge 
has again succeeded in holding her own against her 
sister University, and that her victories of 1870, 1871, 
and 1872 have raised her score to 13, as against the 
16 of Oxford. 

The names of the Crews were as follows : 


S, H. Woodhouse, Univ. 
R. Tahourdin, St John's. 
Thomas Southey Baker, Queen's. 
F, Willan\ Exeter. 

^ Rowed also in 1866, 1867, and 1868. 


James C. Tinn^\ Univ. 
Alf. C. Yarborough^ Lincoln. 
W. D. Benson% Balliol. 
S. D. Darbishire", Balliol* 

Coxswain, D. A. Neilson, St John's. 


J. Arthur Rushton, Emm. 

J. H. Ridley, Jesus. 

J. W. Dale, St John's. 

F. J. Young, Christ's. 

W. F. MacMichael", Downing. 

W. H. Anderson*, ist Trin. 

John Still', Caius. 

John H. D. Goldie, St John's. 

Coxswain, H* E. Gordon, ist Trin. 

Effects of Training and Rowing upon the Crews. 

Benefited. Uninjured. 

13 3 

Extracts from the letters of the Oxford Crew. 

" I have rowed for the last three years in the Univer- 
sity Match, the last two being the most severe races I 
have ever rowed. I have never felt any ill effects either 
from the rowing or training, though I have done a good 
deal in the last few years; for instance, in 1868 and 
1869, I commenced operations with the College Fours 
in November, followed by the trial Eights. After Christ- 
mas I rowed in the University Race, followed by the 

^ Rowed also in 1867 and 1868. ' Rowed also in 1868, 

* Rowed also in 1866, 1867, and i868. 


College Eights and Henley R^atta, where I rowed in 
three distinct Crews. After this I had six weeks train- 
ing with the Oxford Four for the Harvard Race, though 
I did not actually take part in the Race. All these 
Races, as you know, involve a considerable amount of 
training and practice. ♦ ♦ ♦ I have never known men 
injured by rowing. ♦ ♦ ♦ I consider I owe a good deal 
of the health and strength I enjoy to the rowing which 
I began at Eton eight years ago. 

Oxford, May^ 1871. 

"I am delighted to have an opportunity of testifying 
nay gratitude to my Putney rowing; it has been of 
immeasurable benefit to me, and I have never felt the 
least suspicion of harm in any quarter from it 

'' R. Tahourdin." 

Hkytesbury, May^ 1871. 

*'In my case I feel that rowing has done me 
immense good. 

"Thomas Southey Baker." 

Hurst Green, Jtdy^ 1869. 

Extracts from the letters of the Cambridge Crew. 


"As to the effects of rowing on my own health, I 
can so far say that I have experienced no evil results 
from the exertion, to my knowledge ; indeed, I quite 
think that to the regular exercise taken on the river I 
owe the good health I had while in Cambridge. My 
constitution is, I believe, naturally a strong one, and I 



was careful of myself as much as possible, both in and 
out of training, and perhaps specially in going out of 

"J- Arthur Rushton." 

York, May, 1871, 

*'I certainly think that the training for the 'Varsity 
Race' could not possibly damage a man unless he was 
in a weak state of health to begin with, and such a man 
is not likely to be chosen. As for myself, I felt more 
'fit ' and well each day as we got on in training; in fact, 
I never was better in my life. 

"J. H. Ridley." 

Island of Islay, yuttf, 1869. 

"You ask if the severe exercise I have taken has 
ever injured my health or constitution, I can say — cer- 
tainly n6t. 

"I have played at cricket I may say all my life, but 
did not take up rowing until I entered at the University. 
* * * I rowed in my College second Boat in the Lent 
Term 1866, in my College first Boat the next Term, 
after which I devoted the rest of my summer to cricket. 
The following Term I rowed in the University Four- 
Oar Races, and also in the Trial Eights at Ely. In 
the May Term, 1868, I refused to row, and took hard to 
cricket, and played in the University Match at Lord's, 
and in the following Term rowed again in the Four, and 
Trial Eights at Ely; then, in the Lent Term I rowed in 
the University Boat. The following May Term I had 
harder work to do than in any previous one, for I 
played in the different Matches for the University during 
the day, and rowed in our College first Boat in the evening, 
and so on to the end of the Races ; this I found to be 


rather too hard work. Again, in the following October 
Term (1869) I rowed in the University Fours, and 
again in the Lent Term (1870) in the University Crew, 
The next May Term (1870) I did not row in the Race, 
but contented myself by playing again in the Univer- 
sity match at Lord's. That is the amount of exercise 
I took while up at the University, and certainly feel the 
stronger for it. I was examined by a doctor before I 
rowed in the/ University Boat,' in fact, I think everyone 
ought to be. * * * The man who takes this kind of 
exercise is ten times stronger and more healthy than the 
man who does nothing but smoke and frequent billiard- 
rooms, never taking exercise at all. 

London, April, 1872. "J- W. DALE." 

''As far as my observation goes (and I happen to 
know a great number of past and present »' Varsity 
Oars') my opinion undoubtedly is, that to a man of 
sound constitution the training for the Race can do no 
harm, provided always that he uses great care. As for 
the statement about such men dying young, you have 
only to run over the list of names of * Varsity Crews' 
for the 40 years since the Race was first rowed (as given 
in the Rowing Almanac) to see the falseness of that. 

Cheltenham, August, 1869. " F. J. YoUNG." 

" My experience is as yet limited to one Boat-Race. 
All I can say is, that I have never experienced any ill 
effects from the training, &c., for that Race, and I have 
never heard of any one else who has rowed in a Univer- 
sity Race suffering from the exertion. 

Cambridge, yuly, i86f>. ** JOHN H. D. GOLDIE." 


Subjects of special interest connected with Boat-Racing 
are discussed in the following letters. 

From the Right Reverend CHARLES WORDSWORTH, 
D.C.L., Lord Bisfiop of St Andrews. 

Oxford University Eight, Number 4, 1829. 

"The subject upon which you have written to me 
is one in which I naturally take a more than common 
interest. Not only was I one of the Oxford Crew in 
the first Inter-University Boat-Race in 1829, but the 
Race was entirely ^.^/ up by me, owing to the fact that 
though I was myself at Christ Church, Oxford, my 
home was at Cambridge (my father being Master of 
Trinity), and I had a large acquaintance there, and some- 
times (especially in Easter vacations) was invited to 
pull in one of their boats, e. g. that of St John's, in 
which were the now Bishops, Selwyn and Tyrrell, and 
Charles Merivale the historian, all now vigorous and 
flourishing. I may also mention, as bearing upon your 
enquiry, that as soon as my father heard that I had 
been chosen one of the Oxford Eight, and was practising 
for the Race, he wrote me an earnest letter, in which 
he desired me not to row any more, simply from anxiety 
lest my health should suffer. Though I was always 
much given to athletic exercises, even before I went to 
Harrow (where I was one of the Eleven in the first 
Matches against Eton, for four years, 1822 — 1825), my 
constitution was in some respects rather a delicate one. 


When I received his letter I went at once to my physi- 
cian, told him the difficulty in which I was placed, 
begged him to examine my state of health, and got his 
authority to assure my father that so far as he could 
judge, rowing had not cjone me any harm. By this my 
father was satisfied, and I was allowed to go on. The 
Race itself, which was at Henley (two miles up stream), 
certainly did me no harm, though at the time I was 
incommoded by the change to an unusual diet, — under- 
done beefsteaks, porter, dry bread, no butter, no tea, no 
vegetables. After the Race, which was on Wednesday 
or Tuesday (I think), I was able to play cricket, as one 
of the Eleven also, against Cambridge on the following 
Friday. The match was at Oxford. We were victorious 
on both occasions. 

*'For myself, I am now in my 63rd year, yet my con- 
stitution is not seriously impaired, as you may con- 
clude when I mention that I still am able to skate, to 
play at cricket occasionally with my sons, and that last 
year I rowed with them upon the Tay, a distance of 
eight miles, as stroke of a Four-oar ? Nor when I think 
of others whom I knew as a young man at both Uni- 
versities, can I remember any instance of injury being 
done to the health which could fairly be set down to the 
exercise of rowing as then practised. It is true we used 
to be told, even in those days, that no man in a Racing- 
Boat could expect to live to the age of thirty. * * * 
But in giving this testimony, I am no less anxious to 
state my strong conviction that there is a limit beyond 
which the practice of rowing, especially in races, cannot 
be carried without injury, more or less serious both to 
body and mind, and I sadly fear that this limit may 
have been exceeded at the present day. If you can do 
anything to check not the use but the abuse by sober, 


sensible arguments, founded upon well ascertained facts, 
the public in general, especially parents and others in- 
terested in our country's welfare, will have reason, I am 
sure, to be deeply thankful to you. I write as one who 
now, in the decline of life, looks back and finds himself 
responsible in some degree as a promoter, if not a first 
father of the practice, and I would gladly assist in 
bringing the rising generation to a sounder mind in 
regard to the * mania ' as it has been called (not without 
reasons) for this and other 'gymnastics' which now 
prevails. I think that far too much consideration and 
encouragement is given by educational authorities them- 
selves (and here I speak as one who was once a tutor 
and a schoolmaster) to pursuits and distinctions of this 
kind in comparison with the more important objects and 
successes of education. 

An athlete, as I myself have been, I must confess 
that I sympathize if not with the sterner denunciations 
of Mr Grant Duff, and, if I remember right, of Mr 
Froude, yet at least with Sir John Coleridge, when he 
writes in his memoir of Keble, that ' insane and excessive 
passion for athletics, indulged in our great schools as 
well as at Okford, damps industry, and diverts from 
that severe mental labour which is among the guards 
to preserve the mind from yielding to sophistry.' We 
seem to have reached a point at which iraiZia (bodily 
sports) have taken the place of TratSeui (mental culture), 
and the irapepya of our fathers have become the epya of 
our children, and vice versa." 

Perth, May, 1869. 


From the Right Reverend G. A. Selwyn, D.D., 
Lord Bishop of Lichfield, 

Cambridge University Eighty Number 7, 1829. 

I was in the Race of 1829, when Bishop Wordsworth 
rowed in the winning Oxford Boat, and I in the losing. 
The Crew at Cambridge to which I belonged was the 
Lady Margaret of St John's College, which for a long 
time was at the head of the Cambridge river. Among 
the Crew of our College Boat were the present Dean of 
Ely, Bishop Tyrrell of Newcastle, the Rev. S. Banks of 
Cottenham, the Rev. W. Hoare, and njany others now 
alive, not one of whom (so far as I know) has ever ex- 
perienced any bad effects from rowing. One great 
benefit of our rowing was that we were by rule, if 
not by inclination, habitually temperate, and I sup- 
pose all medical men will agree that little danger can 
arise from strong exercise in youth, if the body is 
always kept in a fit state. Many of us were great pe- 
destrians. Bishop Tyrrell and I walked from Cambridge 
to London in 13 hours without stopping. Many were also 
psychrolutes, bathing in winter in all states of the river. 
All these processes, combined with strict diet and 
regular habits, had, I think, a most beneficial effect upon 
the constitution, and certainly enabled Bishop Tyrrell 
and myself, on horseback and on foot, in Australia and 
New Zealand, to make very long journeys without in- 
convenience. My advice to all young men is in two 
sentences : be temperate in all things, and ' incumbite 

Lichfield, June^ 1872. 


II • • — 

Front A. F. Bayford, LL.D., Chancellor of the Diocese 
of Manchester^ Senior in Civil Law, 

Cambridge University Eighty Number 2, 1829. 

"You are quite right in supposing that I am an old 
University Oarsman. At the same time, though I rowed 
in the first Race between the two Universities, we rowed 
on the Henley course, which is not much longer than on 
the Cam; so that I can hardly help you in respect to 
University Races for a long distance, I was, however, 
in the habit of rowing long Races in London, from 
Westminster bridge to Putney (six miles), with London 
men, both with a pair of oars and in Four-oared and Six- 
oared Boats. I also rowed constantly in the short Races 
at Cambridge. My brother perhaps rowed the largest 
number of Races (all from four to six miles) on the 
Thames of any man of his day. I am personally unable 
to mention a single man, either on the Thames or at 
Cambridge, whose health suffered in after life from 
rowing. I have heard of such, but I knew no one 
myself. My own health is, thank God, as strong as 
any man's of my age. My brother has attained the age 
of 64, and has enjoyed capital health, except from causes 
which have had nothing to do with rowing. With regard 
to long and short Races, I have found in my own ex- 
perience that the long ones are the least trying, they do 
not of course occur so frequently, and if rowed properly 
there is less exertion at the utmost stretch of the 
strength. I have been far more beaten by a short 
Race at Cambridge than ever I was by a long one upon 
the Thames; though the actual fatigue went off of course 
sooner. The only time I ever saw my brother really^ 
knocked up by a Race was when he rowed in an Eight- 
oared Boat, manned by London men at Henley, against 


eight Oxford men. The Londoners won: but it was a' 
hard Race. I acted as umpire on the London side. In 
the days when my brother and I rowed there was no 
such thing as regular training. We used to practise 
together, and generally abstained from things unfavour- 
able to wind for a few days, but that was all; and as we 
all did the same and were always on the water, nothing 
further was needed. 

"The men who rowed were much more constantly 
engaged in rowing than they are now. Speaking of the 
Thames, most of those who rowed then did nothing else 
from about May (often earlier) till September (often 
later). They were always rowing, and the exertion was 
far less to them than it is now to most men who row. 
With regard to the modern University rowing, I have 
seen as fine rowing on the Cambridge side in the days 
when they used to win as ever I have seen in an Eight- 
oar, and since Oxford has so decidedly taken the lead, 
I have seen equally fine rowing on their side. The 
present Cambridge system is, however, the very worst 
for a long Race, and frequently loses them Races they 
ought to win. They go upon the idea that the quicker 
the stroke the faster the pace. That is so at a start ; and 
from the short distances between the Boats when starting 
at Cambridge, the nature of the bumping Race and the 
shortness of the course, it answers there. In a long 
Race, however, after the start it is suicidal. It beats 
the men, and then in order to keep time their exertion 

"The distress to a large powerful man, upon whose 
strength the success depends, is greater than upon a 
smaller man, and he gets, if not beaten, to be weaker; 
when in this state, and excited, I can easily imagine 
him straining himself: but this applies to a short Race 


as well as to a long one. We also in London, and in the 
Universities in London, and in days past, had heavier 
boats, and sat higher, and could thus alter our position by- 
moving our feet, looking ahead. All this is denied tp 
the present rower." 

London, May^ 1869. 

From the Rev. CHARLES Warren, M.A., Editor of 


Cambridge University Eighty Number ^^ 1829. 

"The effects of the present system of Boat-Racing on 
the health of the rowers ought most certainly to be 
ascertained. You will do a good work if your enquiries 
enable you to furnish an answer to the question. 

" I rowed in the first Oxford and Cambridge Race, 
and for two years in the Cambridge Races. The Henley 
course was not, I think, above half the length of the 
present London course; the Cambridge course was not 
so long as the present course. In neither case was there 
anything like the present interest or excitement. The 
boats too were the old and lower boats. At Cambridge 
there were sometimes severe Races; but rowing twice a 
week, as we did through the whole term, and in two 
terms (if my memory does not fail me), the Races in 
general were not so sharp as at present: whatever evil 
attended the old system must be much increased now. 

"I am inclined to think that in not a few cases 
permanent disease and shortening of life has ensued. 
I have myself escaped with little harm; I attribute to 
Boat-Racing something of a tendency to palpitation of 
the heart, which is sufficient to shew one harm that may 
be done. We want full statistics, that is, a list of all 

U. O. 20 


rowing men, not confining the list to the Oxford and 
Cambridge Crews, but extending it to all the racing 
Crews, and returns of disease and deaths. I fear that 
these returns would be above the average. It is very 
clear to my mind that no man ought to row in the 
Oxford and Cambridge Race unless he has been war- 
ranted sound in wind and limb, by a surgeon who has 
known him long and tried him thoroughly, and unless 
he has been sufficiently trained by a professional trainer. 
The present attempts to train are absurdly insufficient; 
you cannot bring a man into a fit state for a four-and-a- 
half mile Race, with everything to stimulate him to 
exertion, in a few weeks. And the captains who pretend 
to train their Crews know little of training, and have 
not power enough over their men. For such a Race a 
man ought to be trained as a Newmarket horse, or a 
Greek athlete; that is, he must sacrifice his mind to his 
body. It is not the training that injures the health, 
but the want of training — the sudden and extremely 
violent exertion when the body is not prepared for it. 

"There are two things to be abhorred in the present 
day: Athletics and ^Esthetics, both of them are unduly 

St Ives, yune, 1869. 

From Mr E. S. STANLEY. 

Cambridge University Eight, Number 3, 1836, 

and Stroke 1839. 

" Provided a young man or boy has no tendency to 
disease of the heart, and is what is termed 'sound,' I 
believe that rowing for these Matches does no harm. 
I began myself as a young boy of 13 at Eton; took a 


- ■ 

great liking to rowing — wishing to distinguish myself — 
and worked very hard at it. I was not a strong boy at 
that age, but the care I took of myself, and the violent 
exercise, certainly improved my health and caused me 
to grow up a strong enduring young man ; but I suppose 

all the internal organs were perfectly sound. 

« « « « « 

"Upon the whole, I do not consider that the rowing 
in the University Matches would be prejudicial to any 
young man in sound health. I am rather inclined to 
believe that at the present day they are too much given 
to overwork tlieir men in training; certainly the Crews 
are much heavier than they used to be. But if a man 
of twenty does the work properly that is required of 
him in the Boat, he cannot have much left in him to 
run so many miles in addition. It is all very well for 
older men, whose bones are formed, but cannot do much 
good, I think, to growing lads. I well recollect that I 
could always pull harder and better on a Monday^ oh 
account of my rest on Sunday.** 

Jersey, 1869. 

From the Rev. A. K. B. Granville, MA. 

Vicar of Iffley. 

Cambridge University Eighty Stroke 1839. 

"I have, like yourself, followed Boat-Racing for years 
with much interest, thinking very much on the subject 
when it has been before the public; and my con- 
clusion is, that with proper selection no harm can 
come of it. The strong man, with good heart and lungs 
and adequate muscle, will sustain no ill effects from the 

20 — 2 


excessive exertion which racing demands. But it is 
sheer madness for any one of feeble frame, or defective 
constitution in any respect, to attempt it. No excessive 
exercise has ever ill affected me, simply because a 
beneficent Providence has endowed me with great physi- 
cal powers, and in my college days I could perform 
various athletic feats which were not then, as now, 
matters of contest. But it is only the sons of Anak who 
should attempt these things. You would not hunt a hare 
with a toy terrier, or race against an * Eclipse' with a 
dray-horse. In the same way a man must be qualified 
by nature for the peculiar exertion which is needed in 
feats of strength. If he is not, and undertakes them, 
he runs the risk — I had almost said — ^the certainty, of 
injury. In determining the point, one or two trials are 
enough. If a man can't stand a sharp practice, he can't 
stand a race; and I never felt any difficulty in making 
my selection where there was staple enough to select 
from ; I had a good look at my man as he got out of the 
Boat If a man dropped his head and held his sides, and 
could not speak for a minute or two, and shewed con- 
tinuance of distress after the effort was over, out of the 
Crew went he, as certain as I had charge of it. If on 
arrival he could laugh and romp and jump high over a 
boat-hook, or square up for a right and left, he was one 
'bom to the giant,' the right sort, and no mistake; a 
man who would repay the trainer's trouble, and do a 
good eighth part of the work." 

Iffley, Jun<^ 1859. 


Letter from Mr THOMAS Selby Egan, Coxswain of 
the Cambridge University Eight, 1836 and 1839. 

** As it is not possible to get behind the scenes and 
become acquainted with men's private lives, I think it 
quite fair to argue from cases which we do happen to 
know about, to others of which we must necessarily be 
ignorant On looking over my log books I find that 
I have had to do with the training of about 14 or 15 
University Crews at various intervals from 1836 to i860 
inclusive, and during most of those years I was intimately 
acquainted with nearly all of the Oarsmen at both Uni- 
versities. Many either during that period, or since, died ; 
and you may be sure that the death of such a man at 
once gave rise to the question among his friends, 
whether rowing had in any way hastened it. I can 
safely say not only that I never heard such a thing 
asserted, but in the majority of cases the cause of death 
has been well known to have had absolutely nothing to 
do with rowing. I think indeed this question would 
never have arisen if it were generally known by what 
easy steps and gradations a University Oarsman is fitted 
for the final struggle, as it is called, and how he is (or 
used to be) so prepared beforehand, that distress is a 
thing almost unknown to him. . It must also be remem- 
bered that men constitutionally unfit will in all proba- 
bility have been found out early in training and re- 
jected ; but take an average healthy young man, and 
surely, if not too often called upon, training must be of 
immeasurable benefit to him, bringing with it as it does 
habits of temperance and daily work. Of course I have 
known instances where men, to their own risk and that 
of their University, have inconsiderately neglected their 


training, but they need not be mentioned because (un- 
fortunately for our argument) they are still alive." 

tONDON, December^ 187s. 

Extract from a letter front Mr J. M. Ridley, late 
Scholar of Jesus College, Cambridge. 

Cambridge University Eighty Number ^ 1840 and 1841, 

Stroke 1842. 

" I am of opinion that, on the whole, rowing is a most 
excellent 'institution* at the University. It necessi- 
tates a regular and steady life. It teaches habits of 
self-denial and obedience to orders, and if there are 
evils attending it, they are on the whole less than would 
probably occur to the same number of men engaged 
energetically^ as youth will, in anything they take in 
hand. No man with delicate lungs should undertake 
it any more than mountain climbing, or any severe 
exertion. The great secret to avoid evil is, not to 
undergo severe exertion without proper preparation. By 
observing this I never had a man of my College Crew 
laid up, and by that means in a great measure suc- 
ceeded in getting my College Boat (Jesus) Head of the 
River, while other Crews were being broken up by dis- 
abled men» who were unable to undergo hard work 
immediately after coming up after the vacations." 

Walwick Hall, May^ 1869. 

From tite Hon. George Denman, M.P., Q.C, now 

Mr Justice Denman. 

Cambridge University Eighty Number 7 y 1841 and 1842. 

" My experience about rowing is, that though I have 
fuard of some few cases in which men are said to have 


injured themselves seriously by rowing, I cannot my- 
self speak from actual knowledge of any such case. 

**I think I could quote 20 cases of weak lads who 
have turned out strong men, for one case of a strong man 
who has had any appearance of breaking down, during a 
boating career at either of the Universities ; and in the 
few cases in which men have been said to have died, or 
failed in health, there has generally been some ridicu* 
lous excess to account for it. 

" I have tested many of the most current anecdotes 
of men and Crews ruined in health by rowing. The 
Guards' Six-Oar, which rowed from Oxford to London 
in one day, some forty-five years ago, was currently 
rumoured to have died to a man within a very short 
time. But about 40 years after the event, the present 
Lord Penrhyn, who was one of the Crew, told me, that 
of the six, four were still alive, and the other two had 
been killed in battle. I was myself told, about six 
years ago, that I was the only survivor of my own Crew, 
which was Head of the River at Cambridge in 1842, 
The fact is, that they were then, and, as far as I know, 
still are all alive. 

'• The present Lord Justice Selwyn about the same 
time (six years ago) told me that he had heard the same 
thing about his own Crew, which was Head of the River 
at Cambridge in 1835, and that they also were then 
alive to a man. 

"Of the first Crew in which I rowed in 1841, all 
but one are still alive. * * ♦ My experience is that of 
all the Boat-Races a young and tolerably strong Univer- 
sity man rows, the one least likely to be injurious is the 
University Race. First, because he is generally a picked 
man for health and strength. Secondly, because his 


training is most carefully attended to. Thirdly, because 
from the length of the Race it is a steadier, less con- 
vulsive, less spurting affair, in which it becomes more 
or less of a duty for a man to husband his strength, a 
thing he never thinks of over a short course. One other 
fact. There had been 3 1 winners of the Colquhoun Sculls 
at Cambridge down to October, 1867. A nephew of 
mine having then won them (Mr Denman himself won 
them in 1842, Ed^, I got up a dinner for him, and 
mustered as many old winners as I could gather to- 
gether. I found that of the 31 winners 6 were dead — 
one of scarlet fever, one drowned in New Zealand, one 
murdered by poachers, one fell down the Matterhom, 
one died of decline (he was one of a family all of whom 
died in the same way at younger ages than his own), 
and one of fever caught in the practice of his profession. 
This left 25, of whom 18 appeared (the rest being other- 
wise engaged). These 18, including the first and the 
last^ ate a very hearty dinner, and looked none the worse 
for their aquatic trials. I asked those of them who had 
rowed in University Races to hold up their hands, and 
12, including myself, responded. On the whole I think 
it all depends upon the man; but take the average 
young Englishmen at Public Schools, I believe that far 
more of them are improved in health than damaged, by 
taking to the water; and that those who have derived 
the most benefit from it have been thos6 who have 
rowed in University Crews." 

London, June^ 1869^ 


From the Rev. Henry William Hodgson, 

Rector of Ashwell. 

Oxford University Eighty Number 5, 1841. 

*' I cannot say that my own experience of the train- 
ing and exertion demanded of men who engage in the 
University Race has led me to coincide in the opinion 
that it is of so trying a character as to impair the 
constitution either temporarily or permanently ; on the 
contrary, I believe that in most cases it is attended 
with beneficial results. Rowing men 'keep under their 
bodies and bring them into subjection/ while many 
others who have no motive for doing so, suffer from 
excesses from which I think we 'galley-slaves' were 
saved by the very necessity which the hope of victory 
laid upon us of temperate habits. Rules for training 
are rules of health ; and though I now enjoy excellent 
health and strength, yet I should like to feel again that 
elasticity of body and of spirit which I remember to 
have experienced when in good condition. Those I 
fancy who row in Races without training, and who try 
to combine two things which are incompatible, namely 
dissipated habits with hard aquatic exercise, are the 
men who really suffer. I have known many instances 
of good men, who from over training have become 
what we used to call screwed; men who failed in power, 
and who shewed by a sort of careworn expression of 
countenance that they were not the men that they once 
were. Such men we should reject when choosing a 
Crew ; not that we should consider that their health was 
permanently injured, but that for the present time the 
steam had been taken out of them." 

Ashwell, May^ 1869. * 


From the Right Rev, R T. McDoUGALL, late Lord 
Bishop of Labuan, Fellow of the Royal College of 
Physicians, Edinburgh. 

Oxford University Eight, Number i, 1842. 

''I may add that as a medical man I made it a 
point to choose men who seemed fitted for the work, 
and could stand the strain on muscles, heart and lungs, 
and I believe rowing did us all good ; but we did not 
overtrain, a:s I fancy is now often done, to the prejudice 
of the man. I encouraged running and other exercise 
at the same time. If men have not a sound chest and 
good digestion they will not stand the work of a rowing 
Crew, and should not attempt it, but confine themselves 
to mild four oars and skiffing. Everything of course 
may be carried to excess, and even sound men injured 
by rowing in that case; but my experience is that 
rowing in a racing boat with proper training and fitting 
men does good physically and morally, and men are 
likely to live the longer for it. I believe that in my 
own case it has strengthened me to go through hard 
and trying work on the equator for twenty years, and 
to be, as I am, the only survivor of all my contempo- 
raries in it, but none of them were rowing men." 

Huntingdon, May^ 1869. 

From the Rev, Arthur Shadwell, M. A., Rector of 
Langton, Coxswain of the Oxford University Eight, 1842. 

" I willingly add my contribution to the work which 
you have in hand, and am prepared to state the impres- 
sions left on my mind by a long and varied experience 
of University Match-rowing. During seventeen years 


I trained Oxford Crews at intervals ; and for many more 
years, amounting all together to 34, I have been ac- 
quainted with the results of men's rowing careers. The 
conclusion arrived at has never varied with me, and it is 
this : that University Oarsmen do not suffer from the 
after effects of their work. Indeed, taking the instances 
^ of those men who continued to train and row in public 
Races long after they had graduated and joined the 
London University Rooms' Clubs, it is still more ap- 
parent that the practice in noM'ays affected their health, 
except beneficially. Some men rowed continuously from 
1836 to 1845 1^ Match Crews, and are now most eminent 
in their professions. I remember certain instances in 
which rowing left its harmful mark, and where early 
consumption shewed itself, but those were cases where 
intense love of the craft outbore all prudence and 
forbad a timely retirement from the overstraining exer- 
cise, when delicacy of lungs was easily apparent. One 
case I remember of a very illustrious Oarsman whose 
heart became affected after a long University career ; he 
ceased rowing, and lived till the present year, 28 years 
after his retirement 

" It should be remembered that I am purposely going 
back to the early days of rowing for my instances ; to 
the times when the boats used in matches were large, 
solid-sided cutters, immensely heavy by comparison 
with the outrigger ; when Henley course occupied from 
one minute to one minute and a half longer than at 
present; when the match course from Westminster to 
Putney usually occupied thirty minutes, never under 
twenty-eight. With the outrigger came in a very sen- 
sible alleviation of dead weight to be pulled along, and 
at the same time the lengthening of the oar-leverage 
made an important diminution in the number of strokes 


taken per minute. In the last Race rowed by victorious 
Oxford at Putney in a four-oared gig-craft, 44 to 45 
strokes were taken : now, as is well known, they would 
seldom reach 40. The demand upon the lungs, therefore, 
as the weight on the arms, is materially lessened. The 
adversaries of Match-rowing base their objections on the 
supposed severity of exertion undergone : now in all my 
experience I never knew trained men distressed at the 
end of a racing practice ; and the more perfect the uni-p 
formity of the rowing arrived at, the less proportionably 
is the fatigue. I made it a standard of a perfect Crew, 
that they should row their fourth mile better and faster 
than the first. In a word, there is no distress to a 
trained man, nothing that sickens or turns him faint in a 
four-mile course. The boat is so light that it flies away 
at the first application of the blade at right angles to 
the water, and the difficulty is not in overcoming the 
weight to be moved, but in detaining the blade long 
enough in the water to secure a dwelling stroke. If you 
watch an University Eight, you will observe how ex- 
tremely measured and balanced, even one might say 
prolonged, are the component motions. The men are 
aware that the Boat will run away at the moment the 
fresh power of the stroke is felt, and therefore they pull 
as deliberately as possible. The Crew which is ill- 
trained, either out of condition, or not perfectly ground 
together, will undoubtedly suffer, and severely, but 
deservedly, on the match-day. Such a shipwrecked 
state is not predicated of our University Crews : indeed, 
they of all men suffer least from continuous rowing, 
and are most prepared for the struggle on the day of 
decision. The American Crew of 1869 were half dead 
at the winning post ; they were unformed when they 
started ; our boys, though rowing a ' stem wager,' were 


quite fresh because perfect in uniformity, and never fall- 
ing to pieces. 

" I will only add that training itself is an unmitigated 
good to most men, for most men need to learn modera- 
tion in all their habits, as well as to accustom them- 
selves to regular daily exertion. 

" Your true athlete is he who always keeps himself up 
to the mark of development by wise attention to rules 
and the sweat of his brow. To such an one the training 
makes but little difference, and rowing a match is a 
trifle. I hope your investigations, undertaken with so 
much zeal for the truth, will triumphantly bear out the 
trainer's experience, that in the very vast majority of 
Oarsmen their matches have left no evil consequences 
behind them." 

Langton, Malton, December^ 1871. 

Letter from Mr Edward P. Wolstenholm£, 
Barrister-at-LaWy Lincolris Inn, 

Cambridge University Eighty Number 7, 1846. 

" I am quite satisfied that rowing is a benefit to any 
young man of 18 years or upwards, who has no fault 
in his constitution (i. e. if heart, lungs, etc. are sound). 
If he is merely muscularly weak he will, I am sure, 
benefit. Rowing is different from other exercises (such 
as athletics) in this, that it is difficult for a man to over 
exert himself* When he begins learning he is clumsy, 
thereupon he cannot work hard. As he goes on, he has 
learnt to put out his strength, his strength has increased 
accordingly; I assume, of course, that he never rows a 
Race without being trained. To do as was done by 
one of the Cambridge Crew in the last University Race, 


to supply the place of a man taken ill, and row at three 
days* notice, never having touched an oar for a year, I 
consider mpst dangerous. These are the tricks that 
have caused rowing to be considered dangerous to 

" The effect of training I have found to be to reduce 
the strength for a given effort, and make it last out 
a longer time, besides, of course, increasing the total 
power (?) of work. Thus, I think it is admitted that a 
crew who had not trained (i.e. I mean trained as regards 
diet and hard work, and other things distinct from the 
mere art of rowing) would for half a mile beat the same 
Crew trained; but after the half mile the trained Crew 
would have it all their own way. 

" As to statistics of life, I have made out this: during 
the years 1845-6-7, 1 was rowing in the head Boat of the 
Cambridge river with 20 different men, making with 
myself 21 ; out of those, 18 are now living and in health ; 
of the three who died, one died about eight years after 
of an aneurism ; one died of consumption, his family 
being consumptive, and he, not taking care of himself, 
I have no doubt, met with his death by rowing; of the 
cause of the death of the third I do not know. 

" To answer your questions more specifically, I am 
decidedly of opinion that when a man is sound in con- 
stitution, and rows properly, and with ordinary care and 
training, he will not injure his constitution, he will im- 
prove it ; that has happened with myself. 

*' Except the consumptive case above alluded to I 
cannot say I have ever known a man constitutionally 
injured by rowing. If not of good constitution they 
give it up after a few trials. Of from 27 to 34 men who 
joined our Club yearly, when first coming to the Uni- 
versity, more than half gave it up within six months, and 


at the end of three years not more than seven to ten 
remained at it. 

" I ought to add that I don't think racing good for 
boys, say under i8, when the bones cannot have got 
hardened, but this is only an idea of mine." 

Lincoln's Inn, yune^ 1869. 

Letter from the Rev. J. William Con ant. 
Oxford University Eight, Number 5, 1846. 

"In regard to the question which you ask me, I 
would desire to, make some distinction between the old- 
fashioned style of rowing and that of the modern school. 

"Formerly, as boys, we were taught to develope the 
muscles of our arms and legs, by serving an apprentice- 
ship in heavy boats, and, when in after years, we stepped 
into our racing outriggers (which would be condemned 
as too heavy even for * scratch crews ' in the present day), 
the perfection of rowing consisted in a long steady 
stroke, rowed out evenly and smoothly from beginning to 
end: thus the strain was almost entirely on (what I may 
call) the non-vital organs of the body, viz. the arms and 
legs, which had been previously accustomed to hard 
work. The present system is to build a boat so narrow 
that it can scarcely ever be rowed steadily y and thus an 
undue and uneven strain is constantly thrown upon 
portions of the body — with outriggers extended so far 
from the sides of the boat (for the sake of increased 
'leverage'), that the labour is taken away from the 
arms and legs, and is thrown, by a ^r^^t^x rapidity of 
stroke, upon the vital organs of the body. 

"'Young England' steps at once into such a boat, 
unaccustomed to really hard work; and he is called 
upon to commence each stroke with a slight pause and 


a jerk (technically called *the catch'), and throwing all 
his energy into this catch, the more vital organs of the 
body receive a sudden shock some forty times, or more, 
in every minute, such as I believe no machinery could 
long sustain without injury. 

"I think also that the training (out of the boat) is 
now carried to an undue extent, not calculated to pro- 
duce health. 

" No doubt some of the champions of the modern 
school would deride my notions as being altogether 
obsolete; but I would simply refer them to the published 
records that the University course between Mortlake 
and Putney was rowed quite as fast formerly as now, 
and particularly the Race of 1846, to which you refer, 
and in which I had the pleasure of rowing, was, I be- 
lieve, faster than any subsequent Race over the same 
course^. I think also that the Henley Race in 1848, 
when Burton, of Ch. Ch., was stroke of the Oxford Crew, 
was rowed more quickly than in any subsequent year. 

"Thus, in forming an opinion that the Race-rowing of 
former days was decidedly ftot injurious to the after 
health of those who engaged in it, and that the modem 
style is calculated to be so, I am far from saying that 
I would wish to deter any young man from engaging in 
it even in the present day. 

''I think that a man who is constantly engaged in 
Races must necessarily abstain from many a vicious 
and unhealthy habit, in which, as an idle man, he would 
be tempted to participate; and even admitting that the 
present school of rowing carries with it some degree of 
danger, I think it is the smaller evil of the two, and thus 

SURBITON, April, 187 1. 

^ The Race in 1868 was rowed in 5 seconds less (Ed.). 


Letter from Mr Philip Henry Nind. 
Oxford University Eighty Number i^ 1852, Number 6^ 1854. 

"The subject you refer to, viz. rowing and training, 
has always interested me greatly, and I think that as it 
is much before the English public just now, it should be 
treated fairly, and from a broad point of view. * * * 
From the time I was fifteen till I was past three-and- 
twenty I never ceased rowing and training. At present 
my health could not be better. * * * The wretched 
effeminacy of many young Englishmen who come to 
new countries to seek a livelihood, their want of self- 
regard, their hanging about towns without strength of 
mind to tear themselves away from a soft and luxurious 
life, their continual ruin by strong drink, may, I think, 
to a great extent be attributed to the false ideas which 
it is some people's interest to promulgate, against those 
sports which are a test of manly vigour. I do not think 
that training and Match-rowing will hurt a strong tho- 
roughly healthy man, but if there be any weak point in 
the constitution it may be made worse by hard rowing. 
Again, I think a man should not be less than 19 who 
rows in a University Crew. In 1852 I was under this 
age, and felt the strain, but in 1854 the work seemed 
light to me. 

" I am not aware whether any modification has taken 
place in the system of training, but in my time I think 
it was too uniform — too much beef, mutton, bread and 
gruel, and too little variety of food. It is indispensable 
that certain broad principles should be adhered to, but 
within due limits the previous mode of life should be 
taken into consideration, and tastes and temperaments 

U. O. 21 


be reasonably humoured. No eight men have precisely 
similar organization, and consequently cannot be brought 
to individual perfection of health and endurance by an 
inflexible and Procrustean system of training. At a 
Race it is very rare to find every man at his best; 
symptoms of languor and falling off are by no means 
uncommon, and so the full power of the whole Crew is 
not exhibited: By a strict attention to each man's 
peculiarities, I am convinced that this may be in a great 
measure guarded against and better results obtained. 

** Having lived out of England for the last thirteen 
years I can give you no information respecting con- 
temporary Oarsmen of my own standing." 

Queensland, Jtine^ 187 1. 

Letter from the Rev. JOHN Arkell, Rector of 


Oxford University Eighty Number 3, 1857^ Number 2, 

1858, Stroke 1859. 

" I am very glad of the opportunity you have 
afforded me of protesting against the prejudice that has 
been created in many minds against rowing by the 
unfounded assertions of those who have never had the 
means of testing the truth of what they affirm. Were 
there not now too many living contradictions to these 
words in all parts of the kingdom, I should fear lest a 
great injury would be done to one of the most manly 
and healthful recreations. I shall be glad therefore if 
you are able to carry out your idea, for I feel confident 
the matter has only to be fairly and truly sifted, 
and there will scarcely be found to be any truth in the 
exaggerated, if not wholly unfounded assertions, that 


have been raised from time to time of the injurious effects 
of rowing. * * * Wherever there is a good constitution 
and a fair amount of bodily strength, I do not believe 
that rowing ever leaves any injurious effects behind, except 
such as may be traced to some accidental cause. And 
training of course, if reasonable, is not only absolutely 
necessary, but beneficial. It is not the training or the 
rowing that injure men, but the going out of training, as 
men sometimes do, with a rush into all kinds of excesses. 
Soon after settling down to my first training, and at a 
time when racing was accused of all sorts of crimes, 
for the satisfaction of my friends as well as my own, 

I called on Dr and asked him to examine me 

thoroughly, to see if he could detect any signs of injury 
received, and the result was that he pronounced me 
perfectly sound." 

PORTISHEAD, June, 1869. 

From the Rev, Edmond Warre, Assistant Master at 


Oxford University Eight, Number 6, 1857, Number 7, 


" I am afraid that I can only write a few lines off- 
hand upon the subject of rowing to you, as I am very 
full of work. As I understand, your work is mainly upon 
the Hygiene (to use a French term) of rowing. The late 
Mr Skey, no mean authority, was set against rowing, and 
I suppose equally against \st Class Athletics of every 
kind, by some cases which led him to consider the 
damage therein evident to be entirely owing to the 
severe competitive examination of the physical powers 
which such sports entail upon those who wish to come 



to the front. That it is possible, nay probable, that in 
some cases where there was constitutional weakness, 
harm may have been done, owing to the imprudence of 
the subject in doing that for which he was not fit, I 
suppose no one will deny ; but these cases are not to be 
taken as instantice prcerogativcB of the whole class, and the 
main question is whether Mr Skey's induction was based 
upon sufficient grounds. In my experience I have come 
across many men and boys who were not fit to row, and 
have always, where it was in my power, discouraged 
and even vetoed further attempts on their part. Still a 
case of the kind does occasionally slip by. Of sound 
persons, those who have broken down within my know- 
ledge owe their failure to causes under their own con- 
trol. They have misused their powers and are punished 

"One other point I should like to notice, and that is 
the formation of the habit of rowing. A man or boy 
gets rowing lungs, rowing stomach, rowing muscles by 
rowing, and the rapid motion forward and back in a fast 
stroke, which would be impossible for one unpractised 
to sustain, is sustained, and without injury, by one 
whose bodily powers, whose vessels have been by long 
practice habituated to the exertion. Persons who have 
created this habit of body can go through the necessary 
exertion of a Race with comparatively little wear and 
tear. I think much is to be done in the matter of diet, 
and regulating the amount of exercise in training ; I do 
not think these points are yet well understood. ♦ * ♦ 
As a fact, but few men are injured by rowing and the 
training it involves, except those who, from weakness of 
heart or lungs, ought never to have engaged in it, and 
those who having strong animal propensities, reward 
their abstinence in training by a course of fast, or, I 


might rather say, loose, living afterwards. The former 
class ought to be stopped from rowing by medical 
opinion as to their fitness, which is insisted upon, I am 
happy to say, much more frequently now than it used to 
be. The second class I fear cannot be dealt with, except 
incidentally. They are on the same footing as others 
whose sins find them out. 

" I can refer you to a valuable piece of statistics. 
When Mr Burton and myself presented a memorial from 
the old Oarsmen of Oxford to the Committee, in 1867, 
begging them not to change their rule as to the qualifi- 
cation of men to row in the University Match, we pre- 
sented the names I think of 58 out of all the men who 
had rowed since* 1829. There were in all, I think, 93 or 
94, including those men who had rowed twice. The list 
was only made out to 1864. We could only ascertain 
the names of 8 men as dead, out of the whole number 
in the course of 35 years. I believe you will find these 
statements correct, though I am writing from memory, 
as the facts struck me very much at the time.*' 

Eton, 1869 and 1872. 

From Mr R. F. Clarke, Fellow of St John's 

College, Oxford. 

Oxford University Eight, Number 2, 1859. 

"My general opinion is this, that rowing is a real 
benefit to any man whose constitution is sound ; but if 
heart or lungs are at all touched, then it is a great 


" But there are some nien apparently sound whom 
experience has taught me ought not to row, viz. men of 
a rather livid complexion, thin about the cheeks. I 


cannot tell the reason, I simply have watched results 
for many years ; of course the great test is muscular 
activity. If a man has great vigour the exercise of it 
is natural and beneficial. Men often attribute to rowing, 

"I. The indigestion, which so many men bring on by 
eating too fast and too much. I have seen a man in 
training take 6 or 7 helpings of beefsteak at breakfast, 
and that with great rapidity. 

"2. The derangement which results from want of 
variety in diet. In this respect matters are better than 
they were, but still, puddings, light wines, fruit, &c., are 
too often entirely put aside : a man thinks the great 
object of training is to eat nothing but beef, mutton, 
bread and been 

" 3. The evil consequences of excess when the train- 
ing is over. This is, I believe, one of the greatest 
sources of after ailments; men who have been most careful 
in their diet for 5 weeks suddenly leave off their exercise, 
and live a life thoroughly unhealthy. Too often after 
Putney the champagne lunch and subsequent dinner 
do great harm. 

"I believe the moral value of rowing to be very 
great, as teaching self-denial and self-sacrifice for the 
public good, and as promoting energy and earnestness, 
as well as unity of action amongst the Crew, and sub- 
mission and obedience to the captains. I have noticed 
that as a College improves, the interest in boating 
always increases." 

Oxford, May^ 1869. 


Letter from Mr GEORGE MORRISON. 
Oxford University Boat, Number S, 1859, 1S60, and i86r. 

" No doubt men do sometimes injure themselves by- 
rowing, but that happens at Regattas, where they are 
forced to row short courses at a great pace, out of 
training, and in the hottest season of the year. I have 
known a man row five Races in a day at Henley when 
the thermometer was standing at 8o* in the shade, and 
although this was rather an exceptional case, there is 
rather too much of that sort of thing going on at Re- 
gattas. This is owing to a system of pot-hunting, which 
is not confined to rowing, and is one of the evils of the 
day which old rowing men would like to see knocked on 
the head. I believe that this belief in the injury some- 
times done by entering for too many Races at one 
Regatta is common among old Oars, and it is not un- 
likely that' something may be done before long to 
mitigate the evil by not allowing the same man to enter 
for more than a certain number of Races at one Re- 

In a subsequent letter Mr Morrison remarks, "We 
have had a very influential boating meeting at Putney, 
at which representatives of the Henley Committee were 
present, and we unanimously agreed that it would be 
desirable to limit the number of Races for which a man 
might enter ; so I hope we have cut off" one source of 

Extract from a letter of Mr Weldon Champneys. 
Oxford University Eighty Bow 1861. 

" I believe it is an indispensable condition of being 
able to engage in such a Race safely, that (as was the 


■ ■ ■ ■ - — - ■■■■■■ ■ ■»■ 111 ■ M^- ■^■■■11 M ■ ^ ■■■■■■ I I » . ■ ^^— ^^ ■■ I I ^m^^^^m^^ 

case with myself) there should be a good constitution to 
work upon, and then careful and judicious training. It 
is to the latter of these having been entirely neglected 
in former times, that I attribute, what doubtless is well- 
known to you, the sad havoc which heart disease^ used 
to make among the crews. The former I think we are 
in the greatest danger of now, because I know that 
many men with an intense and unreasoning love of glor}^, 
unbalanced by the prudence which increased age gives, 
recklessly undertake the immense exertion with neither 
thought nor wish to ascertain whether their constitutions 
will stand it. * * * 

" My own strong impression is, that it is not the 
University Race that injures men as a rule ; nor yet the 
College Races, though those, short as the course is, are 
not quite so harmless, because the system of bumping 
requires such sudden and furious spurts, and because 
the men are less evenly matched in a boat, one or two 
good men having to do their own work and that of two 
or three others, who are mere 'passengers ;* but it is the 
Scratch Races, and provincial Regattas, when training is 
impossible, or, at least, considered as superfluous ; and it 
is against these that I should like to hear a strong voice 
lifted up. In the case, however, of our University Race 
there ought to be more care taken than is at present, to 
ascertain the soundness of those who are likely to be 
required to row ; and this in good time, so as to prevent 
coaching being wasted on any who are unfit; and such 
inspection should be compulsory, for the reason I have 
already named. And besides this, the system of ela- 
borate luncheons and dinners after the Race ought to 
be given up, the change from one mode of living to 

^ My statistics do not support the view that the earlier Crews sufTered 
to any great extent from heart disea!»e. 

r » • 


another being thus rendered sudden and violent, when 
it ought to be, as I suppose all will agree, gradual and 

London, May^ 1869. 

Frofn Mr G. H. Richards. 
Cambridge University Eight, Bow 1861, Stroke 1862. 

"My experience has invariably been that boating- 
men are among the strongest men one meets, and I 
have noticed this in America as well as in England. Of 
course there are exceptions, but these are as often due 
to other causes as to rowing. I have no question that 
It is injurious for a man with any trouble about the 
heart or lungs to row Races, and have seen cases where 
it has been so ; and I may say the same of rowing Races 
without proper training. I have thought that it would 
be a good thing both for the University Crews, and for 
the men themselves, that there should be a medical 
examination of the men selected, and that during train- 
ing a little medical advice might save the frequent over- 
training, &c., which all rowing men have experienced." 

Boston, U. S. May, 1871. 

Extract from a letter of Mr W. B. WOODGATE. 

Oxford University Eight, Bow 1862, Number 4, 1863. 

"I have had to train men who could row a long 
course well enough for any given day. Race or practice, 
but they had, so to speak, more muscle than stomach, 
and took out of themselves in the day more than they 
could digest back in the night, hence they were prone? 


to 'go to pieces.' Such men, of course, hamper a Crew, 
the rest of whom require the long and heavy work for 
the sake of practice and condition, but if trained for a 
sculling Race in which they would row singly, they 
would do well enough on the Race-day over the long 
course, though they had previously been confined to 
short courses. Such men, if compelled to keep pace 
with the work of the rest of an Eight, soon become stale 
and feeble in digestion." 
London, July^ 1871. 

Extract from a letter from Mr Charles Ridley Carr. 

Oxford University Eight, Number 7, 1862 and 1863. 

** To make a general remark or t^Yo, I do believe 
that there are men of such extraordinary physique that 
a Putney Race is a mere trifle to them. Again, it is to 
be remembered that those who row at Putney are proba- 
bly the men most qualified in the University to stand 
such killing work, so that even could it be proved that 
no man had hitherto been permanently injured by row- 
ing there, in no case should a careful selection by the 
captain, and in most cases a medical examination be 
dispensed with, in the choosing of the Crew. 

" Again, many men are very careless in going out of 
training. It would be most unfair to blame the Putney 
Race for consequences incurred by indiscretion in this 

" This is a question in which I am much interested. 
The only real way of proving anything has always 
occurred to me to be to make a list of those who have 
rowed in any Race since the first one in 1829, and to 


find out who are dead, who alive, and if dead what they 
died of." 

Marlborough, June^ 1869. 

Extract from a letter from the Rev. William Awdry, 
Second Master of Winchester College. 

Oxford University Eight, Number 6, 1863, Number 2, 


" It is worth noting that I have often been far more 
exhausted even when in 'good condition' in the short 
Races at Oxford, with a weak Crew behind me, than 
I have ever been in our University practising or Race. 
Moreover, rowing is far less strain to a good Oar, who 
pulls straight and economises power, than to an indiffer- 
ent Oar, whose every stroke is working a closed chest 
or bent spine in a manner that is most painful and 
exhausting. * * * 

" Training is certainly not understood at Oxford. 
It must be absurd to treat eight men in the same 
way in order to bring them into the same condition, in 
the same time, whatever may be their build or tempera- 
ment, or whatever their habits when in training. You 
probably know well the weak state which a man gene- 
rally gets some time between the first and third week 
of training, and which he hopes to have got over before 
the Race comes on ; and you must know how short a 
time a man continues in thoroughly good condition. A 
Crew is fortunate in which none of the men are weak, 
and 5 or 6 are at their best at the proper time. I could 
mention men who were at their best after ten days of 
training, and continued at something below their best 
without changing from that time. Others I have seen 
still not fined down after 5 weeks of hard work. I never 


was in better condition myself than at my first Univer- 
sity Race, when I had had lO days of training, then 3 
weeks of rest, and then 10 days of very hard work and 
training: any one who would give directions which would 
make the system of training more rational than it is, 
would be a great benefactor to rowing men, whose 
health is at the mercy of the captains." . 

Winchester, July, 1869. 

Extract from a letter from Rev, E. V. PiGOTT. 

Cambridge University Eight, Number 2^ 1864, Number'^, 


"What little experience I have had in my own train- 
ing for the University, and training others for the 
College Races, seemed to prove to me chiefly this: That 
if a man was regular and moral in his general mode 
of life, he generally trained easily and well, and was 
not in the slightest danger of injury, and that those 
men who knocked up, and were most likely to suffer 
afterwards, were those who were most accustomed to 
indulge themselves in various ways. Smoking we were 
all accustomed to look upon as our greatest enemy, 
and in my opinion (though in this, I dare say, I was 
prejudiced as being a non-smoker myself) the smokers 
were always the least dependable men in the Crew;^ and, 
what I think may prove that I was not alone in this 
opinion, I have often heard men boast that not one man 
of their Crew was a smoker. 

"In a word, if a man breaks down it is to a certain 
extent his own fault, either he has not trained honourably y 
or at first starting he was absolutely not strong enough 
in constitution for it, or he has had the roots of some 


illness in him beforehand ; and I think that every man is 
bound, as I had myself, to have his heart and lungs 
tested before he goes in training for the University 

Malpas, July^ 1869. 


From Mr Henry Schneider, Queenslmid, 

Oxford University Eight, Number 7, 1865. 

" With regard to the training for the University Boat- 
Race, I can only deal with the system adopted in my 
time, and as many persons have formed the most curious 
notions, associating it with violent exercise and raw 
meat, it will perhaps be as well to state briefly in what 
it really consisted. Rise early, take a walk for about 
half an hour, during the course of which spurt once or 
twice at full speed for a distance of about 200 yards 
to improve the wind, a cald bath, breakfast consisting 
of beefsteaks and mutton chops (not necessarily under- 
done), bread or toast, butter, and tea. The trainer 
usually asks the men not to eat much butter, and 
limits them to a reasonable quantity of tea at his dis- 
cretion. No further exercise is then required till after 
lunch, unless, whilst at Putney, some of the men are 
occasionally taken out in the morning for a gentle pull 
in a pair-oared gig to be * coached.* Lunch consists 
of bread, butter, and lettuce or watercress, and half a 
pint of ale. Then comes the rowing for the day. Dinner 
at six ; a joint of beef or mutton, potatoes, cabbage, 
bread, lettuce or watercress, and a pint of ale. After 
dinner a few plain biscuits, and two glasses of port 
wine each. Sometimes a cup of tea is allowed about 
eight o'clock; once or twice also during the training 


fowls are allowed for dinner, and spmetimes eggs for 
bVeakfast. Such things are at the discretion of the 
trainer. Pastry in any shape, and cheese, are never 
allowed, and the men are on their honour not to smoke. 
The hour for bed, is (if I recollect right) ten o'clock. On 
Sundays the crew take a walk oA eight or ten miles, in- 
stead of the rowing. If the rowing itself be put out of the 
question, the whole may be summed up in a few words ; 
regular hours, plain diet, and moderate exercise. Such 
a system, if consistently carried out, can hardly, I think, 
be objected to on the score of endangering the health. 

" There is however one point in a manner connected' 
with the training to which I would desire to draw your 
special attention, and that is the enormous quantity of 
animal food daily consumed by a Boat's Crew whilst in 
training. None but an eye-witness would credit the num- 
ber of mutton chops and the quantity of steak a single 
individual will put out of sight in the course of one meal. 
I cannot but think that herein lies a source of evil not 
generally taken into account, and I would venture to 
suggest that (as is, I believe, often the case during a 
sea-voyage) the appetite may be stimulated to such an 
extent, that the person is tempted to eat more than he 
really requires, and consequently to lay an injurious 
tax on his powers of digestion. To this source I am 
disposed to attribute affections of the liver which are 
sometimes said to have been brought on by rowing, 
and also perhaps in some cases certain minor evils 
incident during the time of training, such as boils, 
headache, etc. 

" Next, with regard to men who are said to be over- 
trained, i. e. who get more qr less weak and knocked up. 
In this case, doubtless, their powers have been rather 
overtaxed for the time being, and here again boils and 


Other evils above alluded to may shew themselves from an 
opposite cause. How far this may be the case I must 
leave you to decide, but I do not think that it at all follows 
that the constitution should have sustained the slightest 
injury, and no further result would doubtless follow if 
they were to attempt to do the work of a quarryman or 
a navvy for a week. 

" I now come to what I believe to be tlie chief, if not 
the only real danger attendant upon Boat-Racing, and 
that is the violent strain upon the action of the heart 
caused by rowing a rapid stroke, and exerting every 
energy to maintain the same to the end of the Race. 

" This, however, is an objection which may be urged 
with quite as much justice against foot-races for dis- 
tances of a mile or more, and no man with either heart 
or lungs in an unsound state ought to think of attempt- 
ing either the one or the other. But let the heart and 
lungs be sound, and the constitution fair, I feel confi- 
dence in saying that cases of either permanent or tem- 
porary injury to the constitution through rowing in the 
University Race will be found extremely rare." 

Queensland, Oct, 1869. 

Extract from a Letter from Mr FREDERICK Crowder. 

Oxford University Eighty Number 2, 1 866, Number 6, 


"As to College Races, I can confidently say that 
I always felt more exhausted after them than after 
either of thfe University Races, although in 1867 (my 
last year) we only won the Race by half a length. This, 
as I said before, I ascribed to want of proper training, 
only three weeks being given for the Eight at Oxford^ 


which in my opinion is not sufficient to fit a man to 
row eight consecutive nights. I should consider three 
weeks' training ample for a single Race, not exceeding 
two miles. 

" There is one great difficulty with reference to train- 
ing for rowing, which does not equally apply to training 
for other sports: it is always a reasonable thing that a 
Crew in training should have their meals together, for 
many reasons; perhaps the chief one is to give the 
captain an opportunity of exercising a surveillance over 
them, to see that they do not eat anything which is 
against the traditional rules of training, but this prac- 
tically involves the necessity of dieting every one alike ; 
and this, I think, is a great drawback to training men 
properly, as in a Crew of eight men the chances are 
greatly in favour of there being several different con- 
stitutions to deal with, and thus it often happens that 
what is beneficial for training one man, may be quite 
the reverse for another, and therefore some men may 
come to the Boat in a condition which disqualifies them 
for the task they have to perform." 

Reading, Jtme^ 1869. 

Extract from a Letter from Mr F. Willan. 

Oxford University Eighty Number 4, 1866, Ntimber 7, 
1867, Number 6, 1868, Number ^, 1869. 

''My own impression with regard to rowing is, that, 
provided a man is tolerably sound in body, it will not 
hurt him, unless carried to a great extent, as long as he 
trains, and prepares himself for Races; but I have a 
strong idea that what we call scratch Races will often 
over-tax a man's power and do him more harm than 
years of steady rowing ^\\!ci proper preparation for it. 



"I have often felt very much 'done up' after short 
scratch Races, and thought afterwards how foolish I was 
to row. Moreover, you nearly always will see in scratch 
Races, a lot of men rowing who are weak in body and 
constitution, and whom you would never think of picking 
out to put in a regular Crew; and yet those men go and 
row desperately and entirely out of condition, in a heavier 
boat than a racing one. I cannot help thinking that the 
seeds of ill health are often sown in this way; but this 
is the abuse of rowing, and ought by no means to be 
held in evidence against it, any more than you would 
condemn fox-hunting because a man chose to get on a 
hunter, for the first time in his life, and run with the 
hounds, breaking his neck Id the course of the run." 

London, April<i 187 1. 

Extract from a Letter from Mr F. J. YoUNG. 

Cambridge University Eighty Number 4, 1869. 

"There is only one objection to the training, and I 
should not be giving you my whole opinion if I did not 
state it; it is not exactly physical, but still results 
from the bodily exercise. It is this — during the time of 
training, and for some period afterwards, all study is 
almost impossible. Although the body Is in an ap- 
parently perfect state of health, and capable of any 
exertion, the mind is almost utterly incapable of doing 
anything. I do not know whether this proceeds from 
exhaustion or excitement, perhaps both * 

Cheltenham, August^ 1869. 
U. O. 22 


From the Rev. Henry Arthur Morgan, M.A., 

Fellow and Tutor of Jesus College, Cambridge, 
Honorary Secretary of the Cam Improvement Com- 

" As I have during many years taken very deep inr 
terest in Rowing, I am glad, to have an opportunity of 
making a few remarks on the University. Boat-Race, 
the mainstay of rowing at Cambridge. 

" In the first place, it is probable that injurious 
consequences may result from a sudden cessation of hard 
rowing over long courses, and all its attendant training, 
when these have been continued during a considerable 
period of time. Those who become members of a Uni- 
versity Crew are accustomed to take very severe exer- 
cise whilst at College, and this they generally abandon 
abruptly on settling down, soon afterwards, to the seden- 
tary lives of clergymen or London lawyers. I have 
occasionally noticed a certain worn-out expression about 
former University Oarsmen. Without being ill, they 
appear to be fit for little active exertion. A cloud 
has passed over the buoyancy and vigour which once 
stamped their countenances. Possibly these may be 
cases in which the constitutional was not on a par with 
.the muscular strength which conduced to gain the 
blue ribbon. Of course University Oarsmen are, as 
far as possible, chosen from those who combine both, 
but sometimes it is difficult for persons who have not 
received a medical education to be certain that the 
former is present even when the latter is most evident, 
especially at the time of youth. But, whatever be the 
cause, I cannot say I have noticed any such appearance 
in men whose rowing has been confined to races at 
Cambridge, where the course is much shorter, terhaps 


my opinion on this latter point may be of some little 
value, for I have myself rowed in over lod Eight-Oar 
races on the Cam, and mixed much with rowing men. 

" Again, in considering the causes of the debilitated 
condition I have mentioned, I am inclined to think that 
something is due to thq great length of the course 
over which the Race is now rowed. At present we 
see young men between the ages of 19 and 23 la- 
bouring their utmost at a stroke of from 37 to 40 
per minute, perhaps cruelly quickened during one or 
more spurts, for a distance of over 4J miles, or for a 
period of more than 20 minutes ; and this, too, at a 
time when the intense anxiety of the day, and the 
excitement of previous weeks, have strung the nerves up 
to the very highest tension. No doubt many pass 
through this severe strain, the preparatory period of 
hard work and training, and the complete reaction 
which follows, without subsequent injury to themselves ; 
and it would be strange if this were not the case, for 
University Oarsmen are selected from the most robust. 
But at the age of 21 manhood has not been fairly 
reached, the frame has not been perfectly developed, 
and the substance of the body has not attained its 
maturer state of firmness and toughness. ^It is the old 
story of young horses being injured by running over 
long courses. I believe there would be much less risk 
of injury if the present course were considerably short- 
ened, i,e, if the start were, say from Hammersmith 
bridge instead of Putney. Men fully matured, between 
the ages of 25 and 30, might probably row hard and 
fast over the present course, and be in no way the worse, 
but it is difficult to believe that all those who now gal- 
lantly strive to uphold the honour of their Universities 
can escape quite scatheless from the struggle. It will 

22 — 2 


perhaps be said in reply to this that it is the 'pace 
that kills/ and that in a shorter course the pace would 
be more severe. But nothing can be more severe than 
the pace sometimes is on the Thames; witness the 
desperate contests of 1867, 1871, and many others. 
In 1 87 1 the Oxford stroke at one time reached 42 
to 43, and in 1872, 43 to 44 per minute, according 
to the published reports. In the College bumping Races 
at Cambridge the pace is often very severe, and the 
spurts frequent, but the exertion there is not at all equal 
to that undergone in a hard. Race from Putney to Mort- 
lake. The 'Eton boys' who are, on the average, at least 
two or three years younger than the University Crews, 
row the Henley course of about 9 minutes, and at a 
very quick stroke. 

"There is another point which may also be men- 
tioned. The daily and weekly bulletins of the news- 
papers on the performances of the Crews, not unfre- 
quently written by persons utterly ignorant of the beau- 
tiful and intricate art they profess to criticise, cannot be 
too severely deprecated. They lead to a perpetual 
excitement which is in every way bad for the men. 
Sometimes they are totally unjust and unduly severe, 
and then have a very depressing effect on the victims, 
who, we may be certain, are doing their utmost to arrive 
at perfection. And here let me add, the mischief done 
by the Press culminates, shortly before the Race, when 
we see our noble Crews dragged into the gambling 

"Though many 'abolitions' may be in store for 
Cambridge, nothing could be more deplorable than any- 
thing which tended to the abolition of Rowing. On the 
contrary, I wish to see it encouraged, for I know its value 
morally, as well as physically. In the relaxing climate 


of Cambridge it is especially desirable that he who 
leads the life of a student should take plenty of bodily 
exercise. If this be neglected his position in the Tri- 
pos will be gained at the expense of a blanched cheek 
and impaired brain. The rowing men in the Univer- 
sity comprise many of our most steady and industrious 
students. Vicious habits and vigorous exercise rarely 
go hand in hsind. The former may flourish in the 
billiard-room or near the dovetrap, but their haunts 
are not by the river. Active youths at the age of 20 
must have an exercise in which skill is required and 
emulation may be found. Their wants will hardly 
be supplied by taking 'constitutionals' along straight 
roads bounded by turnip-fields, in a country so flat 
that a tall man has an extensive view. But in Boating 
they find exactly what they want. It is not expen- 
sive ; it may be practised all through the year, and 
a Boat-Race does not, like a Cricket-Match, take a 
whole day. Moreover, the goal to which the boating 
man presses forward is not the mustard-pot in the 
silversmith's window, which, now, alas ! must be visible 
before an athlete will jump over a footstool or run 
round a grassplot But Boating would not continue 
to attract the numbers it does, if the College Races 
were to languish, which they certainly would do were 
it not for the stimulus of the University Race. A blue 
blade is the highest ambition of all rowing men. It is 
the fellowship of the Cam, and the main incentive 
to row. My earnest desire therefore is to see a place in 
the University Boat made as free as possible from 
danger to the health.. 

Cambridge, February^ 1873. 


The following spirited Boating Songs were written 
by two old University Oars, the late lamented Mr Greorge 
E. Hughes \ who pulled No. 7 in the Oxford University- 
Boat of 1842, and who was also stroke of the famous 
Seven-oar Henley Crew, and Mr Duncan Darroch, who 
rowed No. 4 in the Cambridge University Boats of 1858 
and 1859. 


The wood sways and rocks in the fierce Equinox, 
The old heathen war-god bears rule in the sky, 

Aslant down the street drives the pitiless sleet, 
At the height of the housetops the cloudriack spins by. 

Old Boreas may bluster, but gaily well muster, 
And crowd every nook on bridge, steamboat, and sbore^ 

With cheering to greet Cam, and I sis, who meet 
For the Derby of boating, our fdte of the oar. 

" Off jackets !" — each oarsman springs light to his seat. 
And we veterans, while ever more fierce beats the rain. 

Scan welX the light form of each hardy athlete. 
And live tjie bright days of our youth once again. 

A fi^ for" the weather! they're off! swing. together ! 

Tho^ lumpy the water and furious the wind. 
Against 2^ ^ dead noser '' our champions can row, Sir, 

And leave the poor "Citizens'' panting behind. 

*' Swing together!" The Crab-tree, Barnes, Chiswick are past; 

Now Mortlake — and hark to the signalling gun ! 
While the victors, hard all, long and strong to the last, i 

Rush past Barker's rails, and our Derby is won. 

^ Mr Hughes's song is inserted by the kind pennission of Mr Thomas 
Hughes, M.P. 


Our Derby, unsullied by fraud and chicane, 
By thieves-Latin jargon, and leg's howling din — 

Our Derby, where "nobbling" and "roping" are vain. 
Where all run their best, and the best men must win. 

No dodges we own but strength, courage, and science ; 

Gold rules not the fate of our Isthmian games ; 
In brutes — ^tho' the noblest — ^we place no reliance ; 

Our racers are men, and our turf is the Thames. 

The sons of St Denis in praise of their tennis. 
Of chases and volleys, may brag to their fill ; 

To the northward of Stirling, of golf, and of curling, 
Let the chiels wi' no trousers crack on as they will. 

Cricket, football, and rackets-— but hold. 111 not preach, 
Every man to his fancy — Pm too old to mend — 

So give me a good stretch down the Abingdon reach, 
Six miles every inch, and "hard all" to the end. 

Then row, dear Etonians and Westminsters, row, 
Row, hardfisted craftsmen on Thames and on Tyne, 

Labuan, New Zealand, your chasubles peel, and 
In one spurt of hard work, and hard rowing, combine. 

Our maundering critics may prate as they please 

Of glory departed and influence flown — 
Row and work, boys of England, on rivers and seas. 

And the old land shall hold, firm as ever, her own. 

George £. Hughes, 1868. 

AIR.— "Viva la Trinit6." 

Oh gentles I pray you, come list to my song, 

" Viva la Trinity !» 
Of the Trinity hearts so united and strong ; 

"Viva la Trinit6r 
For Henley's proud records full plainly can shew, 
That wherever the struggle, whatever the foe, 
The shout for the Victor still louder shall grow 

Of "Viva la Trinit6l" 


Oxford Winners, iSap. 

John Carter, St John's. 
y. E, Arbuthnot, Balliol. 
y, E. Bates, Christ Church. 
C. Wordsworth, Christ Church. 
J. J. Toogood, Balliol. 
Thomas Gamier, Worcester. 
George B. Moore, Christ Church. 
Thomas Staniforth, Christ Church. 

Coxswain, W. R. Fremantle, Christ Church. 


A. B. E. Holdsworth, Trinity. 
A. F. Bayford, Trinity Hall. 
Ch. Warren, Trinity. 
C. Merivale, St John's. 
Thomas Entwisle, Trinity. 
1V» 71 Thompson, Jesus. 
G. A. Selwyn, St John's. 
W. Snow (now Strahan), St John's. 
Coxswain, B. R. Heath, Trinity. 

^ The names of the Oarsmen being in most cases taken from their own 
signatures, I believe this list will be found correct. 


Cambridge Winners, 1836. 

W. Hammond Solly, ist Trinity. 
F. S. Green, Caius. 
£. S. Stanley, Jesus. 
Perceval Hartley, Trinity Hall. 
Warren M. yones^ Caius. 
John H. Keane, ist Trinity. 
Arthur W. Upcher, and Trinity. 
Augustus K. B. Granville, Corpus. 
Coxswain, Thos. Selby Egan, Caius. 


George Carter, St John's. 
Edward Stephens, Exeter. 
William Baillie, Christ Church. 
T. Harris, Magdalene. 
yusHnian Vere Isham^ Christ Church. 
John Pennefather^ Balliol. 
William S» Thomson, Jesus. 
Fred. Luttrell Moysey, Christ Church. 
Coxswain, £. W. L. Davies, Jesus. 

Cambridge Winners, 1839. 

Alfred H. Shadwell, St John's. 

Warington W. Smyth, ist Trinity. 

John Abercrombie, Caius. 

A. Paris, Corpus. 

C. T, Penrose, Trinity. 

WUliam Hamilton Yatman, Caius^ 

W. Baliol Brett, Caius. 

£. S. Stanley, Jesus. 

Coxswain, Thos. Selby Egan, Caiu;;. 


Stanlake Lee, Queen's. 
John Compton, Merton. 
S, E. Maberly, Christ Church. 
W. J. Gamett, Christ Church. 
R. G. Walls, Brasenose. 
R. Hobhouse, Balliol. 
Philip Lybbe Powys (now Lybbe), Balliol. 
Calverley Bewicke, University. 
Coxswain, W. Ffooks, Exeter. 


Cambridge Winners, 1840. 

Alfred H. Shadwell, St John's. 
W. Massey, ist Trinity. 
S. B. Taylor, 1st Trinity. 
John M. Ridley, Jesus. 
G. C. Uppleby, Magdalene. 
F. C. Penrose, Magdalene. 
Heighway Jones, Magdalene. 
Charles M. Vialls, 3rd Trinity. 

Coxswain, Thos. Selby Egan, Caius. 


y, G. Mountain i MertoD. 
I. J. J. Pocock, Merton. 
.S*. E, Maberfy, Christ Church. 
William Rogers, Balliol. 
R. G, Walls, Brasenose. 
£. Royds, Brasenose. 
Godfrey Meynell, Brasenose. 
John Somers Cocks, Brasenose. 

Coxswain, W. B. Gamett, Brasenose. 

Cambridge Winners, 1841. 

William Croker, Caius. 
Hon. L. W. Denman, Magdalene. 
A. M. Ritchie, ist Trinity. 
John M. Ridley, Jesus. 
R. H. Cobbold, St Peter's. 
F. C. Penrose, Magdalene. 
Hon. G. Denman, ist Trinity. 
Charles M. Vialls, 3rd Trinity. 
Coxswain, J. M. Croker, Caius. 


Richard Bethell, Exeter. 

E. Vaughan Richards, Christ Church. 

y, G. Mountain^ Merton. 

E. Royds, Brasenose. 

H. W. Hodgson, Balliol. 

William Lea, Brasenose. 

Godfrey Meynelly Brasenose. 

John Somers Cocks, Brasenose. 

^Coxswain, C. B. Woolaston, Exeter. 


Oxford Winners, 1842. 

F. T. MacDougall, Magdalene Hall. 
Robert Menzies, University. 

Edw. A. Breedon, Trinity. 
W, B. Brewster^ St John's. 

G. D. Bourne, Oriel. 
J. C. Cox, Trinity. 
George E. Hughes, Oriel. 
F. N. Menzies, University. 

Coxswain, Arthur Shadwell, Balliol. 


Ernest Tower, St John's. 

Hon. L. W. Demnan, Magdalene. 

W, IVdtson, Jesus. 

F. C. Penrose, Magdalene. 

R. H. Cobbold, St Peter's. 

y. Royds, Christ's. 

Hon. G. Denman, ist Trinity. 

John M. Ridley, Jesus. 

Coxswain, A. B. Pollock, Trinity. 

Cambridge Winners, 1845. 

Gerard Mann^ Caius. 
W. HarknesSy St John's. 
W, S, Lockhart, Christ's. 
W, P. Cloves, ist Trinity. 
F. M. Arnold, Caius. 
Robert Harkness, St John's. 
J. Richardson, ist Trinity. 
C. G. Hill, 2nd Trinity. 

Coxswain, H. Munster, 1st Trinity. 


Mark Haggard, Christ Church. 

W. Chetwynd Stapylton, Merton. 

William H. Milman, Christ Church. 

Henry Lewis, Pembroke. 

W. Buckle, Oriel. 

F. C. Royds, Brasenose. 

F. Maitland Wilson, Christ Church. 

F. E. Tuke, Brasenose. 

CoxswaiDi F. J. Richards, Exeter. 


Cambridge Winners, 1846. 

George Francis Murdoch, St John's. 
G. F. Holroyd, ist Trinity. 
Stephen T. Clissold, 3rd Trinity. 
W. P. Cloves, I St Trinity. 
Edmund Wilder, Magdalene. 
Robert Harkness, St John's. 
Edwd. P. Wolstenholme, ist Trinity. 
C. G. Hill, 2nd Trinity. 

Coxswain, T. B. Lloyd, Lady Margaret. 


H. S. Polehampton, Pembroke. 
E. C. Burton, Christ Church. 
W. U. Heygate, Merton. 

E. H. Penfold, St John's. 

J. William Conant, St John's, 

F. C. Royds, Brasenose. 

W. Chetwynd Stapylton, Merton. 
W. H. Milman, Christ Church. 

Coxswain, C. J. Soanes, St John's. 

Cambridge Winners, March 29, 1849. 

H. Prohy, 2nd Trinity. 
W, y. H. yones, 2nd Trinity. 
A. de Rutzen, 3rd Trinity. 
Charles y antes Holden, 3rd Trinity. 
W, L. G. Bagshawe, 3rd Trinity.. 
W. H. Waddington, 2nd Trinity. 
W. C. Hodgson, ist Trinity. 
J. Copley Wray, 2nd Trinity. 

Coxswain, George Booth, ist Trinity. 


David Wauchope, Wadham. 
J. W. Chitty, Balliol. 
Henry H. Tremayne, Christ Church. 
E. C. Burton, Christ Church. 
Charles H. Steward, Oriel. 
Arthur Mansfield, Christ Church. 
Edward Sykes, Worcester. 
W. Gordon Rich. Christ Church. " 
Coxswain, C. J. Soanes, St John's. 


Oxford Winners, Dec. 15, 1849. 
J. J. Hornby, Brasenose. 
W. Houghton, Brasenose. 
jfames Wodehotisey Exeter. 
J. W. Chitty, Balliol. 
James Aitken, Exeter. 
Charles H. Steward, Oriel. 
Edward Sykes, Worcester. 
W. Gordon Rich, Christ Church. 
Coxswain, R. W. Cotton, Christ Church. 


A. Baldry, 1st Trinity. 
Henry E. Pellew, 3rd Trinity. 
A. de Rutzen, 3rd Trinity. 
Charles yames Holderty 3rd Trinity. 
W, L. G. BagshawCy 3rd Trinity. 
Henry John Miller, 3rd Trinity. 
W. C. Hodgson, ist Trinity. 
J. Copley Wray, 2nd Trinity. 
Coxswain, George Booth, ist Trinity. 

Oxford Winners, 1852. 

K. Prescot, Brasenose. 
Richard Greenall, Brasenose. 
Philip Henry Nind, Christ Church. 
Reginald J. Buller, Balliol. 
Henry Denne, University. 
W. Houghton, Brasenose. 
W. O. Meade King, Pembroke. 
J. W. Chitty, Balliol. 

Coxswain, R. W. Cotton, Christ Church. 


E. Macnaghten, ist Trinity. 
Henry Brandt, 2nd Trinity. 
H. E. Tuckey, St John's. 
H, B. Foord, ist Trinity. 
E. Hawley, Sidney. 

W. S. Longmore^ Sidney. * 

W. Norris, 3rd Trinity. 
Fred. Wm. yohnsoriy 3rd Trinity. 
Coxswain, C. H. Crosse, Caius. 


Oxford Winners, 1854. 

W. F. Short, New College. 
Ad. Hooke, Worcester. 
W. Pinckney, Exeter. 
T. Blundell, Christ Church. 
T. A. Hooper, Pembroke. 
P. H. Nind, Christ Church. 
Geo. L. Mellish, Pembroke. 
W. O. Meade King, Pembroke. 
Coxswain, T. H. Marshall, Exeter. 

R, C, Gallon, ist Trinity, 
Spencer Nairne, Emmanuel. 
John C. Davis, 3rd Trinity. 
Stair Agnew, ist Trinity. 
Edwd. Courage, ist Trinity. 
Fred, IVm. Johnson, 3rd Trinity. 
Henry Blake, Corpus. 
John Wright, St John's. 

Coxswain, C. T. Smith, Caius. 

Cambridge Winners, 1856. 

Peter King Salter, Trinity Hall. 
F. C. Alderson, ist Trinity. 
R. Lewis Lloyd, 3rd Trinity. 
Edward H. Fairrie, Trinity HalL 
H. Williams, St John's. 
Joseph McCormick, St John's. 
H. Snow, St John's. 
H. R. Mansel Jones, 3rd Trinity. 
Coxswain, W. Wingfield, ist Trinity. 

Philip Gurdon, University. 
W. F. Stocken, Exeter. 
R. I. Salmon, Exeter. 
Alfred B. Rocke, Christ Church. 
Richard Newman Townsend, Pembroke. 
A. P. Lonsdale, Balliol. 
George Bennett, New College. 
J. T. Thorley, Wadham. 

Coxswain, F. W. Elcrs, Trinity. 



Oxford Winners, 1857. 

Robert W. Risley, Exeter. 
Philip Gurdon, University. 
John Arkell, Pembroke. 
Richard A^artin, Corpus. 
W. Hardy Wood, University. 
Edmond Warre, Balliol. 
A. P. Lonsdale, Balliol. 
J. T. Thorley, Wadham. 

Coxswain, F. W. Elers, Trinity. 

Arthur P. Holme^ 2nd Trinity. 
Anthony Benn, Emmanuel. 
W. H. HoUey, Trinity Hall. 
A. L. Smith, ist Trinity. 
J. J. Serjeantson, ist Trinity. 
R. Lewis Lloyd, Magdalene. 
P. Pearson (now Pennant), St John's- 
H. Snow, St John's 
Coxswain, R. Wharton, Magdalene. 

Cambridge Winners, 1858. 
H. II. Lubbock, Caius. 
A. L. Smith, ist Trinity. 
W, J. Havart, St John's. 
Duncan Darroch, ist Trinity. 
Hugh Williams, St John's. 
R. Lewis Lloyd, Magdalene. 
A. H. Fairbaim, ^nd Trinity. 
J* Hall, Magdalene. 
Coxswain, R. Wharton, Magdalene. 

Robert W. Risley, Exeter. 
John Arkell, Pembroke. 
Charlton G. Lane, Christ Church. 
W. G. G. Austin, Magdalene. 
Emald Lane, Balliol. 
W. Hardy Wood, University. 
Edmond Warre, Balliol. 
J. T. Thorley, Wadham. 

Coxswain, H. Walpole, Balliol, 



Oxro&o WiKHERs, 1859 

H. Fleming Baxter, BrasenoK. 

R. F. Claike, St Jc^in's. 

Charlton G. Lane, Christ Chnrdi. 

Hon. V. Lawless (now Lord CloncnnT), Ba]Ii<4. 

G. Morrison, BallioL 

R. W. Rislqr, Exeter. 

Geo. G. T. Thomas (now Trebeme), BallioL 

John Arkell, Pembroke. 

Coxswain, A. J. Robarts, Christ Church. 


Nat. Royds, ist Trinity- 
H. J. Chaytor, Jesus. 
A. L. Smith, ist Trinity. 
Duncan Darroch, ist Trinity. 
Hugh Williams, St John's. 
R. Lewis Lloyd, Magdalene. 
George Foley ^ St John's. 
y, Hallf Magdalene. 

Coxswain, J. T. Morland, ist Trinity. 

Cambridge Winners, i860. 

S. Hcathcote, ist Trinity. 
H. J. Chaytor, Jesus. 
D. Ingles, ist Trinity. 
Joseph S. Blake, Corpus. 
M. Coventry, Trinity Hall. 
Benjn. N. Cherry, Clare Hall. 
A. H. Fairbaim, 2nd Trin. 
y. Hall^ Magdalene. 

Coxswain, J. T. Morland, Trinity. 


J. N. McQueen, University. 
G. Norsworthy, Magdalene. 
T. F. Halsey, Christ Church. 
J, Young, Corpus. 
G. Morrison, Balliol. 
H. Fleming Baxter, Brasenose. 
C. J, Strong, University. 
R. W. Risley, Exeter. 
Coxswain, A. J. Robarts, Christ Church. 


Oxford Winners, i86i. 

Weldon Champneys, Brasenose. 
Ed. B, Merriman, Exeter. 
Henry £. Medlicott, Wadham. 
Wm. Robertson, Wadham. 
G. Morrison Balliol. 
A. R. Poole, Trinity. 
H. G, Hopkins, Corpus. 
W. M. Hoare, Exeter. 
Coxswain, S. O. B. Ridsdale, Wadham. 


G. H. Richards, ist Trinity. 
H. J. Chaytor, Jesus. 
W. H. Tarleton, St John's. 
Joseph S. Blake, Corpus. 
M. Coventry, Trinity HalL 
Henry H. CoUings, 3rd Trinity. 
R. U. Penrose Fitzgerald, Trinity Hall. 
,J, Hall^ Magdalene. 

Coxswain, T. K. Gaskell, 3rd Trinity. 

Oxford Winners, 1862. 

W. B. Woodgate, Brasenose. 
O. S. Wynne, Christ Church. 
William B. R. Jacobson, Christ Church. 
R. Edward L. Burton, Christ Church. 
Allan Morrison, Balliol. 
A. R, Poole, Trinity. 
Charles Ridley Carr, Wadham. 
W. M. Hoare, Exeter. 
Coxswain, F. E. Hopwood, Christ Church. 


P. Freeland Gorst, St John's. 
J. G. Chambers, 3rd Trinity. 
Edward Sanderson, Corpus. 
Wm. Cecil Smyly, 1st Trinity. 
R. U. Penrose Fitzgerald, Trinity Hall. 
Henry H. CoUings, 3rd Trinity. 
J. G. Buchanan, ist Trinity. 
G. H. Richards, 1st Trinity. 
Coxswain, F. H. Archer, Corpus. 



Oxford Wnfmns, 1863. 

Robert Shqpbeid, BrascDOse. 
F. Hume Kelljr, Uniyersitj. 
William B. R. Jaoobson, Cbiist Chnidb 
W. B. Woodgate, Brasenose. 
Allan MorrisoOy Balliol. 
William Awdry, BallioL 
Charles Ridley Carr, Wadham. 
W. M. Hoare, Exeter. 
Coxswain, F. E. Hopwood, Christ Chorcfa. 


J. Clarke Hawkshaw, 3rd Trinity. 
Wm. Cecil Smyly, ist Trinity. 
R« H. Morgan, Emmanuel. 
J. Bowstead Wilson, Pembroke. 
Claude H. La Mothe, St John's. 
Robert A. Kinglake, 3rd Trinity. 
J. G. Chambers, 3rd Trinity. 
John Stanning, ist Trinity. 
Coxswain, F. H. Archer, Corpus. 

Oxford Winners, 1864. 

C. P. Roberts, Trinity. 
William Awdry, Balliol. 

F, Hume Kelly, University. 

J. C. Parson, Trinity. 

William B. R. Jacobson, Christ Church. 

A. £. Seymour, University. 

M. Meredith Brown, Trinity. 

D. Pocklington, Brasenose. 

C. R. W. Tottenham, Christ Church. 


J. Clarke Hawkshaw, 3rd Trinity. 

E. V. Pigott, Corpus. 

H. S. Watson, Pembroke. 
W. W. Hawkins, St John's. 
Robert A. Kinglake, 3rd Trinity. 
Geo. Borthwick, ist Trinity. 
D. Fenwick Steavenson, Trinity Hall. 
J. R. Selwyn, 3rd Trinity. 
Coxswain, F. H. Archer, Corpus. 


Oxford Winners, 1865. 

R. Taunton Raikes, Merton. 
H. P. Senhouse, Christ Church. 
Edward F. Henley, Oriel. 
Gilbert Coventry, Pembroke. 
Allan Morrison, Balliol.. 
Thomas Wood, Pembroke. 
Henry Schneider, Trinity. 
M. Meredith Brown, Trinity. 
Coxswain, C. R. W. Tottenham, Christ Church. 


Herbert Watney, St John's. 
Meyrick H. L. Beebee, St John's* 

E. V. Pigott, Corpus. 

Robert A. Kinglake^ 3rd Trinity. 
D. Fenwick Steavenson, Trinity HalL 
Geo. Borthwick, ist Trinity. 
W. Russell Griffiths, 3rd Trinity. 

C. B. Lawes, 3rd Trinity. 
Coxswain, F. H« Archer, Corpus. 

Oxford Winners, 1866. 

R. Taunton Raikes, Merton. 
Fred. Crowder, Brasenose. 
W. L. Freeman, Merton. 

F. Willan, Exeter. 
Edward F. Henley, OrieL 
W. W. Wood, University. 

H. P. Senhouse, Christ Church. 
M. Meredith Brown, Trinity. 
Coxswain, C. R. W. Tottenham, Christ Churclt. 

John Still, Caius. 
J. R. Selwyn, 3rd Trinity. 
J. Ulick Bourke, ist Trinity. 
Hugh J. Fortcscue, Magdalene. 

D. Fenwick Steavenson, Trinity Hall. 
Robert A. Kinglake, 3rd Trinity. 
Herbert Watney, St John's. 

W. Russell Griffiths, 3rd Trinity. 
Coxswain, A. Forbes, St John's. 


Oxford Winneks, 1867. 

W. Paget Bowman, University. 
J. H. Fish, Worcester. 

E. S. Carter, Worcester. 
W. W. Wood, University. 
James C. Tinn^, University. 
Fred. Crowder, Brasenose. 

F. Willan, Exeter. 

K. G. Marsden, Merton. 
Coxswain, C. R. W. Tottenham, Christ Church. 


W. Herbert Anderson, ist Trinity. 
John M. CoUard, St John's. 
J. Ulick Bourke, ist Trinity 
Hon, J, H, Gordon^ ist Trinity, 
F. E. Cunningham, King's. 
John Still, Gains. 
Herbert Watney, St John's. 
W. Russell Griffiths, 3rd Trinity. 
Coxswain, A. Forbes, St John's. 

Oxford Winners, 1868. 

W. D. Benson, Balliol. 
Alf. C. Yarborough, Lincoln. 
Robert S. Ross of Bladensberg, Exeter. 
R. G. Marsden, Merton. 
James C. Tinnd, University. 
F. Willan, Exeter. 
E. S. Carter, Worcester. 
S. D. Darbishire, Balliol. 
Coxswain, C. R. W. Tottenham, Christ Church. 

W. H. Anderson, ist Trinity. 
J. P. Nichols, 3rd Trinity. 
James G. Wood, Emmanuel. 
W. H. Lowe, Christ's. 
H. Trafford Nadin, Pembroke. 
W. F. MacMichael, Downing. 
John Still, Caius. 
W. J. Pinckney, ist Trinity. 
Coxswain, T. D. Warner, Trinity Hall. 


Oxford Winners, 1869. 

S. H. Woodhouse, University. 
R. Tahourdin, St John's. 
Thomas Southey Baker, Queen's. 
F. Willan, Exeter. 
James C. Tinn4, University. 
Alf. C. Yarborough, Lincoln. 
W. D. Benson, Balliol. 
S. D. Darbbhire, Balliol. 
Coxswain, D. A. Neilson, St John's. 

' Cambridge. 

J, Arthur Rushton, Emmanuel. 

J. H. Ridley, Jesus. 

J. W. Dale, St John's. 

F. J. Young, Christ's. 

W. F. MacMichael, Downing. 

W. H. Anderson, ist Trinity. 

John Still, Caius. 

John H. D. Goldie, St John's. 

Coxswain, H. £. Gordon, ist Trinity. 


University Oars who died between 1829 and 1869. 

James Edward Arbuthnot, the Mauritius, Sept. 29, 1868, 
aged 59. 

W. L. G. Bagshawe was killed by poachers in the river Wye, in 
Derbyshire, July 24, 1854. 

The Rev. John Ellison Bates died at Dover, in February, 1856, 
aged 46. 

Calverley Bewicke died in 1866. 

W. B. . Brewster, Captain and Adjutant of the Rifle Brigade, 
Colonel of the Inns of Court Volunteers, died in London, July 7, 

W. P. Cloves died Sept 25, 1849. 

William Croker died at Cambridge in 1841. 

H. B. Foord died in London in 1863. 

R. C. Galton, M.D., died in Worcestershire on the 22nd March, 

The Very Rev. Thomas Gamier, D.D., Dean of Lincoln, died 
at the Deanery, Lincoln, December 7, 1863, aged 54. 

The Hon. J. H. Gordon died at Cambridge, February 14, 1868. 

The Rev. Mark Haggard died on his way from Madeira in 

J. Hall died in 1868, aged 33. 

The Rev. W. Harkness died in 1863. 

The Rev. W. J. Havart, Rector of Milton-Bryant, died in 1866. 

C. J. H olden died on the 26th of May, 1862. 

Sir Justinian Vere I sham, Bart, died in 1846, aged 30. 

The Rev. Fred. William Johnson died in December, 1859. 

W^arren Jones died at Lower Charlton in 1843. 

The Rev. W. J. H. Jones died in the Barbadoes in 1857. 

Walter Scott Lockhart (Scott) died in 1851, aged 26. 


The Rev. W. S. Longmore died in 1855. 

The Rev. Gerard Mann died in October, 1855, aged 33. 

The ReV. S. E. Maberly died in 1848. 

Godfrey Meynell died July 3, 1858. ^ 

The Rev. J, G. Mountain died in Newfoundland in 1856. 

G. F. Murdoch died in 1849. 

George Paley died at Leeds in 1866. 

The Rev. A. Paris died October 24, 1861. 

John Pennefather died in 1857. 

The Rev. C. T. Penrose died in 1867. 

The Rev. H. S. Polehampton, late Fellow of Pembroke College, 
Oxford, died at Lucknow, July 20, 1857. 

H. Proby was drowned in Australia in 1852. 

The Rev. John Royds died in June, 1865, aged 46. 

The Rev. William Thomas Thompson died November 10, 1840, 
aged 39. 

The Rev. W. S. Thomson died in 1867. 

W. Watson died in 1847. 

The Rev. James Wodehouse was lost in the " London," which 
foundered at sea on the loth of January, 1866. 

J. Young died November 26, 1865. 

%* The causes of death, though discussed in a previous portion 
of this work, are here omitted, as in several instances the infor- 
mation supplied to me has been of a confidential character* 




Oxford University Crews. 


Aitken, Rev. James, No. 5, Dec, 1849 
Arbuihnoty y, £., No. a, 1829 .... 
Arkell, Rev. J., No. 3, 1857; No. 2, 1858; 

Stroke, 1859 

Austin, Rev. W. G. G., No. 4, 1858 . 
Awdry, Rev. W., No. 6, 1863; No. «, 1864 


Baillie, Sir William, Bart., No. 3, 1836 
Baker, Thomas Southey, No. 3, 1869 . 
Bates, Rev, y, E,, No. 3, 1829 . 
Baxter, Rev. H. Fleming, Bow, 1859; No. 6, 


Bennett, George, No. 7, 1856 

Benson, W. D., Bow, 1868; No. 7, 1869 • 

Bethell, Richard, Bow, 1841 

Bewtcke^ Calverley^ Stroke, 1839. 

Blmidell, Rev. T., No. 4, 1854 . 

Bourne, Rev. G. D., No. 5, 1842 

Bowman, W. P. (Barrister-at-Law), Bow, 1867 

Breedon, Edwd. A., No. 3, 1842 

Brewster y Colonel IV. B., No. 4, 1842 

Brown, M. Meredith, No. 7, 1864; Stroke, 1865 


Buckle, Rev. W., No. 5, 1845 . 
BuUer, R. J., No. 4, 1852 .... 
Burton, E.G., No. 2, 1846; No. 4, March, 1849 
Burton, R. E. L., No. 4, 1862 . 


Carr, C. R., No. 7, 1862 and 1863 
Carter, Rev. John, Bow, 1829 
Carter, Rev. George, Bow, 1836 . 
Carter, Rev. E. S., No. 3, 1867; No. 7, 1868 
Champneys, Rev. Weldon, Bow, 1861 
Chitty, J. W., No. 2, March, 1849 ; No. 4, Dec., 
1849; Stroke, 1852 

200, 203 
127, 132 

226,228,233, 237,322 

260, 262, 265, 331 

138, 145 
294, 296, 

i27» 133 

«37» «39» «43 
219, 226 

288, 289, 295 

168, 171 

149, 158 

212, 215 

173, 176 
282, 284 

173, 176 
173, 178 

265, 268, 271, 277 

180, J 84 

205, 208 

187, 289, 192 

«54, ^56 

«54» «S7. 2^ 
127, 130 

i38» 144 
282, 285, 288 

248, «49» 3«7 
192, 197, 200, 205 



Clarke, R. F., No. fl, 1859 .... 

Cocks, J. Somers, Stroke, 1840 and 1841 . 

Compton, Rev. John, No. a, 1839 

Conant, Rev. J. W., No. 5, 1846 

Cotton, R. W., Coxswain, Dec. 1849 and 1852 

Coventry, Rev. Gilbert, No. 4, 1865 . 

Cox, Rev. J. C, No. 6, 1842 

Crowder, Fred., No. 2, 1866; No. 6, 1867 . 


Darblshire, S. D., Stroke, 1868 and 1869 . 
Davies, E. W. L., Coxswain, 1836 
Denne, Henry, No. 5, 185a 

Elers, F. W., Coxswain, 1856 and 1857 


Ffooks, W.» Coxswain, 1839 
Fish, Rev. Jf. H., No. «, 1867 . 
Freeman, W. L., No. 3, 1866 . . . 
Fremantle, Rev. W. R., Coxswain, 1829 . 


Gamett, Rev. W. B., Coxswain, 1840 
Garnett, W. J., No. 4, 1839 
Gamier^ Rev, Thomas^ No. 6, 1829 
Greenall, Rev. R., No. 2, 1852 . 
Gurdon, Philip, BoW| 1856; No. 2, 1857 


Haggard^ Rev, M,^ Bow, 1845 . • • . 
Halsey, T. F., No. 3, i860 . . . . 
Harris, Rev. T., No. 4, 1836 .... 
Henley, E. F., No. 3, 1865; No. 5, 1866 . 
Heygate, W. U., (Barrister-at-Law), No. 3, 1846 
Hoare, Rev. W. M., Stroke, i86x, 1862, and 

1863 ...... 

Hobhouse, Rev. R., No. 6, 1839 
Hodgson, Rev. H. W., No. 5,' 1841 . 
Hooke, Rev. A., No. 2, 1854 . 
Hooper, Rev. T. A., No. 5, 1854 
Hopkins, Rev. H. G., No. 7, i86r 
Hopwood, Rev. F. E., Coxswain, 1862 and 1863 
Hornby, Rev. J. J. (D.D.), Bow, Dec. 1849 
Houghton, Rev. W., No. 2, Dec. 1849; ^o* 6» 


Hughes, Geoiige E., No. 7, 1842 

237, 204 
159, 166, 168 

148, i5* 
187, 190 

I93» 205 
271, 274 

I73i 177 
277, 279, 282, 335 

288, 290, 295 

205, 208 

Uham^ SirJ, V, (Bart.), No. 5, 1836 

219, 227 

282,. 284 

277, 279 


148, 155 

"7, »33 

205, 207 

219, 323, 226 

180, 186 

«43. 247 

138, 146 

271, 274, 277 

187, 190 

248, 251, 254, 2(5o 

I49» 157 
168, 172, 313 

212, 214 
248, 251 
154* «6o 
200, 202 

200, 202, 205 
I73» 177 

138, 147 




Jacobson, Rev. W. B. R., No. 3, i86a and 1863; 
No. 5, 1864 . . . . ' . 

«54i «5^» 260, 265 

Kelly, F. H., No. a, 1863; No. 3, 1864 . 

260, 261, 265 


Lane, Rev. Charlton, No. 3, 1858 and 1859 

Lane, Rev. Emald, No. 5, 1858 

Lawless, Hon. V. (Baron Cloncurry), No. 4, 

1859 • • 

Lea, Rev. William, No. 6, 1841 . 

Lee, Rev. Stanlake, Bow, 1839 .... 

Lewis, Rev. Henry, No. 4, 1845 

Lonsdale, A. P. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 6, 1856; 

No. 7, 1857 

Lybbe, P. L. Powys, No. 7, 1839 


Maberfy, Rev, S, E,, No. 3, 1839 and 1840 
MacDougall, Right Rev. F. T. (D.D.), Bow, 


McQueen, J. N., Bow, i860 . . 
Mansfield, Rev. Arthur, No. 6, March, 1849 
Marsden, R. G., (Barrister-at-Law) Stroke, 1867 

No. 4, 1868 

Marshall, T. H., Coxswain, 1854 

Martin, Rev. R., No. 4, 1857 • • • 

Meade King, W. O., No. 7, 1852; Stroke, 1854 

Medlicott, H. £. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 3, 1861 

Mellish, G. L., No. 7, 1854 

Menzies, F. N., Stroke, 1842 

Menzies, Sir Robert (Bart.), No. 

Merriman, £d. B., No. 2, 1861 

Meynell, ^., No. 7, 1840, 1841 

MUman, Rev. W. H. (Canon) 

Stroke, 1846 
Moore, Rev. G. B.,,No. 7, 1829 
Morrison, Allan, No. 5, 1862, 1863 and 1865 
Morrison, George, No. 5, 1859, i860 and 1861 
Mountain t Rev. y, G.t Bow, 1840; No. 3, 1841 
Moysey, Rev. F. Luttrell, Stroke, 1836 

2, 1842 

No. 3, 1845 

«33» 236 
«33i n^ 

237, 240 
t68, 173 

148, 154 
180, 184 

219, 225, 227 

149, 158 

148, 158, 159 

173, 17s. 314 
«43f M 
^93» 199 

282, 286, 288 


226, 229 

205, 208, 212 

248, 250 
212, 216 

>73. 178 
173, 175 
248, 250 

I59» i^7» 168 

180, 184, 187 

127, 131 

254, 256, 260, 271 

237. «4>. «43, 248, 327 
159, 167, 168 

138, 146 


Neilson, D. A., Coxswain, 1869 .... 
Nind, Philip Henry, No. 3, 1852; No. 6, 1854 . 
Norsworthy, G. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 2, i860 , 

«05, 207, 212, 321 

243» «4^ 





Parson, Rev. J. C, No. 4, 1864 .... 
Penfold, E. H., No. 4, 1846 .... 
Pennef other ^ yohn. No. 6, 1836 .... 
Pinckney, W., No. 3, 1854 .... 

Pocklington, Rev. D., Stroke, 1864 . 
Pocock, I. J. J. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 2, 1840 '. 
Polehamptotty Rev, H, S., Bow, 1846 . 
Poole, A. R. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 6, 1861 and 

1862 . . 

Prescot, Rev. K., Bow, 1852 


















Raikes, R. Taunton (Barrister-at-Law), Bow, 
1865, 1866 . 

Richards, E. Vaughan (Barrister-at-Law), No. 2, 

Richards, F. J., Coxswain, 1845 . . . 

Rich, W. Gordon, Stroke, March and Dec 1849 

Ridsdale, S. O. B., Coxswain, 1861 . 

Risley, Rev. R. W., Bow, 1857 and 1858; No. 6, 
1859; Stroke, i860 

Robarts, A. J., Coxswain, 1859, i860 . 

Roberts, Rev. C. P., Bow, 1804 

Robertson, W., No. 4, i86i .... 

Ross of Bladensberg, Robert, S., No. 3, 1S68 . 

Rocke, Alfred, B., No. 4, 1856 .... 

Rogers, Rev. W., No. 4, 1^40 .... 

Royds, Rev. E. , No. 6, 1840; No. 4, 1841 

Royds, Rev. F. C, No. 6, 1845 and 1846 , 

«7i» «73» «77 


168, 172 

199, 200 

226,228,233, 237, 243 

237. 243 
265, 267 

248, 251 


219, 224 

>59, 165 

159, 166, 168 

180, 185, 187 


Salmon, Rev. R. I., No. 3, 1856 

Schneider, H., No. 7, 1865 

Senhouse, H. P., No. 2, 1865 ; No. 7, 

Seymour, Rev. A. E., No. 6, 1864 

Shad well. Rev. Arthur, Coxswain, 1842 

Shepherd, Rev. R., Bow, 1863 . 

Short, Rev. W. F., Bow, 1854 . 

Soanes, C. J., Coxswain, 1846, and March, 1849 

Staniforth, Rfev. Thomas, Stroke, 1829 

Stapylton, Rev. "W. Chetw3md, No. 2, 1845 ; No 

7, 1846 .... 
Stephens, Ed., No. 2, 1 836 
Steward, Rev. C. H., No. 5, March, 1849; No 

6, Dec. 1849 

Stocken, Rev. W. F., No. 2, 1856 
Strong, CI., No. 7, i860 .... 
Sykes, Rev. Ed., No. 7, March and Dec. 1849 

219, 224 
27'» 275, 333 
27i» 273, 277 

265, 267 

173. 3»4 
260, 261 

212, 214 

T87, 193 
127, 132 

180, 183, 187 

1931 '98» 200 
219, 223 

243» 247 

i93» i99i 200 




Tahourdin, Rev. R., No. «, 1869 

Thomas, Geo. G. T. (now Treheme), No. 7, 1859 

Thomson^ Rev. W, S., No. 7, 1836 

Thorley, J. T., Stroke, 1856, 1857, 1858 . 

Tinn^, T. C, No. 5, 1867, 1868, 1869 

Toogood, Rev. J. J., No. 5, 1819 

Tottenham, C. R. W., Coxswain, 1864, 1865 

1866, 1867, 1868 .... 
Townsend, R. N., No. 5, 1856 . 
Tremayne, Henry H., No. 3, 1849 
Tuke, F. E., Stroke, 1845 .... 


Walls, Rev. R. G., No. 5, 1839 ^^^ ^^4^ • 
Walpole, H., Coxswain, 1858 
Warre, Rev. E., No. 6, 1857 ; No. 7, 1858 
Wauchope, Rev. D., Bow, March 1849 
Willan, F. No. 4, 1866; No. 7, 1867; No. 6, 

]868; No. 4, 1869 .... 277 
Wilson, F. M., No. 7, 1845 
Wodehouset Rev, James, No. 3, Dec 1849 . 
Wood, Rev. T., No. 6, 1865 
Wood, Rev. W. Hardy, No. 5, 1857 ; No. 6, 1858 
Wood, W. W. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 6, 1866 

No. 4, 1867 . . . . 
Woodgate, W. B. (Barrister-at-Law), Bow, i86a 

No. 4, 1863 

Woodhouse, S. H., Bow, 1869. 
Woolaston, Rev. C. B., Coxswain, 1841 
Wordsworth, Right Rev. C. (D.C.L.), No. 4, 


Wynne, Owen S., No. 2, i86a , 


Yarborough, Alf. C, No. a, 1868 ; No. 6, 1869 
Young, John, No. 4, i860 

294, 296 
237, 241 

138, 147 
229, 227, 233 

282, 285, 288, 295 
"7, 131 

265, 271, 277, 282, 288 
219, 225 
192, 198 
180, 185 

H9. 156 

227, 229, 323 

192, 197 

280, 282, 288, 294, 336 
180, 185 
200, 203 
271, 274 
227, 229 

277, 282 

«54, «5S, «6o, 329 

294, 296 


128, 130, 299 
«54f 355 

288, 289, 294 
«43. 247 




Cambridge University Crews. 

Abercrombie, J., M.D., No. 3, 1839 . 

Agnew, S., No. 4, 1854 

Alderson, Rev. F. C, No. 2, 1856 . , 
Anderson, W. H., No. i, 1867, 1868 ; No. 6, 1869 
Afel^er, Rev. F. H., Coxswain, 1862, 1863, 1864, 
1865 ........ 

Arnold, Rev. F. M., N0.5, 1845 


Bagshawe^ IV. L, G,, No. 5, March, and Dec 

1049 .«•*.. . 
Baldry, A., Bow, Dec. 1849 
Bayford, A. F. (LL.D.), No. 2, 1829 
Beebee, M. H. L., No. 2, 1865 . 
Benn, Rev. Anthony, No. 2, 1857 
Blake, Henry, No. 7, 1854 
Blake, Rev. J. S., No. 4, i860, 1861 . 
Booth, G., Coxswain, March and Dec, 1849 
Borthwick, G. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 6, 1864 

and 1865 

Bourke, J. Ulick, No. 3, 1866, and 1867 " 
Brandt, Rev. Henry, No. 2, 1852 
Brett, Sir W. Baliol (Knt), No. 7, 1839 
Buchanan^ J. G.,*No. 7, 1862 • 


Chambers, J. G., No. 2, 1862; No. 7, 1863 . 
Chaytor, H. J., No. 2, 1859, i860 and 1861 
Cherry, Rev. B. N., No. 6, i860 
Clissold, S. T. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 3, 1846 
Cloves, W. P,, No. 4, 1845 and 1846 . 
Cobbold, Rev. R. H., No. 5, 184 1 ; No. 6, 1842 
Collard, Rev. J. M., No. 2, 1867 
CoUings, H. H., No. 6, 1861 and 1862 
Courage, Edwd., No. 5, 1854 . , 

148, 151 

212, 217 

218, 221 

283, 286, 288, 295 

255> 260,266, 272 
180, 181 

192, 196, 201 
200, 203 

128, 134, 303 
272, 275 
227, 230 
212, 217 

243» 245i 249 
192, 201 

266, 269, 272 

278, 281, 283 

205, 209 

148, 152 


254. «58, 260 
238, 242, 243 

«43, «45 
186, 188 

180, 183, 186 

168, 170, 174 

283, 287 

«49» «53» ^55 

212, 217 



Coventry, Millis, (Barrist^r-at-LAw), No.. 5, fi86o 


Croker^ WilUaniy Bow, 1841 • , . 
Croker, Rev. J. M., Coxswain, 184I . 
Crosse, Rev... C. H., Coxswain» 185 ^ . 
Cuningham, p. E., (Barrister-at-Law)^ No. 5, 1867. 

D. . 

Dale, J. W., No. 3, 1869 ♦ ... 
Darrdch, Duncan, (Barrister-at-Law), No: 4, 1858 

and 1859 ...••• 
Davis, J. C, No. 3, 1854 . . . 
Penman* Hon. G., No. 7, 1841 and. 1841. . 
Denman, Hon. L. W., No. 2, 1841 and 1841 
De Rutzen, A. No. 3, March and Dec, 1849 


Egan, Thos. * Selby, Coxswain, 1836, 1839 and 


Entwisle, Thomas, No. 5, 18^9 . . . 


Fairbaim, Rev. A. H., No. 7, 1858 and i860 
Fairrie, Edward H., No. 4, 1856 
Fitzgerald, R. U. P., No. 7, 1861 ; No. 5, 1862 
Foordy H, B.J No. 4, 1851 .... 
Forbes, A., Coxswain, 1866 and 1867 . 
Fortescue, Rev. H. J., No. 4, 1866 


GaltoH.R. C, (iV.Z?.), Bow, 1854 
Gaskell, Rev. T. K., Coxswain, i86t . 
Goldie, J. H. D., Stroke, 1869 . . 
Gordon, H. E., Coxswain, 1809 
Gordon, Hon. y. //"., No. 4, 1867 
Gorst, Rev. P. Freeland, Bow, 1861 . 
Granville, Rev. A. K. B., Stroke, 1836 
Green, Rev. F. S. No. 2, 1836 . 
Griffiths, W. R., (Barrister-at-Law), No. 7, 1865; 
Stroke, 1866 and 1867 .. . • 


Hall, y.y Stroke, 1858, 1859, i860, I861 
Harkness, Rev. R., No. 6, 1845 and 1846 
H^rkness, Rev. fV., No. a, 1845 
Hartley, Perceval, No. 4, 1836 . 
Havarty Rev. W. J., No. 3, 1858 
Hawkins, W. W., No. 4, .1864 . 
Hawkshaw, J. C, Bow, 1863 and 1864 
Uawley, Rev. E., No. 5, 1851 . • 

U. O. 

«43t «45, «49 
168, 170 



183, 287 


«3«. «34, 238 
212, 216 

i68, 170, 174, 31a 

|68, 169, 174 

192, 193 

138, 148, 150, 309 
"8, 135 


«.^5. H3 

218, 221 


253, «55 

205, 2£I 

278, 383 

278, 282 

212, 217 


«95, 298 


«83, 287 



^ 143, 307 

138, 140 

272, 276, 278, 283 

232» «35» 238, «43. «49 
z8o, 181, 186 

li^o, 181 
13^ 141 

«.^2f 235 
266, 269 

ifo, 262, 266 

205, 3 10 




Heath, B. R., Coxswwn, 1819 . • • 
Heathcote, S., Bow, i860 .... 
Hill, Rev. C. G.. Stroke, 1845 and 1846 . 
Hodgson, Rev. W. C, No. 7, March and Dec, 


Holden^ C. y.. No. 4. March and Dec. 1849 
Holdsworth, A. B. E., Bow, 1829 
Holley, W. H., No. 3, 1857 ... 
Holme, Rev. A. P., Bow, 1857 . 
Holroyd, G. F., No. «, 1846 . . . 

Ingles, Rrv. David, No. 3, i860 



Johnson, Rev, F, TV., Stroke, 1852; No. 6, 1854 
Tones, He'ghway, No. 7, 1840 . . . . 
Jones, H. R. Mansel, Stroke, 1856 
yofifs. Rev, W, y. II,, No. «, March, 1849 
Jones, Warren if., Na 5, 1836 .... 


Keane, Sir John H. (Bart.V No. 6, 1836 
Kinglake, Robert A., No. 6, 1863; No. 5, 1864; 
No. 4, 1865; No. 6, 1866 . . . . 


La Mothe, Rev. Clpnde H., No. 5, 1863 

Lawes, C. B., Stroke, 1865 

Lloyd, R. Lewis (Barrister-at-Law), No. 3, 1856 

No. 5, 1857, 1858 and 1859 • 
Lloyd, Rev. T. B., Coxswain, 1846 
Lockhart, W, S., No. 3, 1845 
Longmore^ Rev. W, S,, No. 6, 1853 . . 
Lowe, W. H., No. 4, 1868 . 
Lubbock, Rev. H. H., Bow, 1858 


McCormick, Rev. J., No. 6, 1856 

MacMichael, Rev. W. F., No. 6, 1868; No. 4, 


Macnaghten, £. (Barrister-at-Law), Bow, 1853 
Mann, Rev, Gerard, Bow, 1845 . 
Massey, W., No. ), 1840 .... 
Merivale, Very Rev. C. (D.D.), No. 4, 1849 
Miller, H. J., No. 6, Dec. 1849 . 
Moigan, Rev. R. H., No. 3, 1P63 
Mcrland, J. T., Coxswain. 1859, ^^^ 
Munster, H. (Barrister-at-Law); Coxswain, 1845 
Murdoch, G.'F,, Bow, 1846 • 

180, 183, 186 

194, 195, lot 

193, iq6, 201 

n8, 134 

t2^, 330 
186, 188 

«43» «44 

205, IT I, «T« 

194, 196 

460, 464, 466, 474, 478 

461, 463 
474, 476 

4 18, 441, 447, 434, 438 

405, 411 
488, 491 
434, 434 

419, 444 

488, 494, 495 
405, 409 
180, 184 

I59» J6o 
i«8, 135 

40I, 404 
460, 463 

«38, «43 


186, 1^9 




Nadin, H. Trafford, No. 5, 1868 . 
Naime, Rev. Spencer, No. 2, 1854 
Nichols, J. P., No. % 1868. 
Norris, Rev. W. A., No. 7, 185a 


PaUy^ George (Barrister-at'-Law), No. 7, 1859 
Parisy Rev, A,, No. 4, 1839 . . 
Pearson, P. P., No. 7, 1857 
Pellew, H. E., No. a, Dec. 1849 
Penrose, Rev. C, T., No. 5, 1839. 
Penrose, F. C, No. 6, 1840 and 1841 ; No. 4, 1843 
Pigott, Rev. E. v., No. «, 1864 ; No. 3, 1865 
Pinckney, Rev. W. J., Stroke, 1868 . 
Proby, H,y Bow, March 1849 



913, 9l6 

988, 990 

90$, 9 10. 

23«, 14« 
T48, 153 

937, 333 

30O, 304 

148, 153 

159, 103, 168, 174 

366,368, 3)3, 333 

388, «94 
193, 195 

Richards, G. H., Bow, 1861 ; Stroke, 1862 . 949, 

Richardson, Rev. J., No. 7, 1845 

Ridley, J. H., No. 3, 1869 . . . 

Ridley, J. M., No. 4, 1840 and 1841 ; Stroke, 1843 159, 161, 

Ritchie, A. M. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 3, 1841 . 

^^</j, ^«;. y., No. 6, T843. . . 

Royds, Rev. N., Bow, 1859 .... 

Rushton, Rev. J. A., Bow, 1869 .... 


Salter, Peter King, Bow, 1856 . 
Sanderson, Rev. Ed., No. 3, 1863 
Selwyn, Right Rev. G. (D.D.), No. 7, 1839 
Selwyn, Rev. J. R., Stroke 1864 ; No. 3, 1866 
Sergeantson, Rev. J. J., No. 5, 1857 . 
Shadwell, Alfred, H., Bow, 1830 and 1840 
Smith, A. L. (Barrister-at-law), No. 4, 1857; No 

3, 1858; No. 3, 1859 .... 
Smith, C. T. (Barrister-at-law), Coxswain, 1854 
Smyly, W. Cecil (Barrister-at-law), No. 4, 1863 

No. 3, 1863 

Smyth, W. Warington, No. 3, 1839 . 
Snow, Rev. H., No. 7, 1856, Stroke, 1857 
Snow, W. (now Strahan), Stroke, 1839 
Solly, W. Hammond, Bow, 1836 
Stanley, E. S., No. 3, 1836; Stroke, 1839 . 
Stanning, J., Stroke, 1863 .... 
Steavenson, D. F. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 7 

1864; No. 5, 1865 and t866 
Stm, Rev. John, Bow, 1866; No. 7, 1867; 1868 

and 1809 

«S2» nh 349 

180, 183 

295» «97 
168, 174, 310 


174» 179 

438, 343 

«95, ^97 

318, 330 
354. 358 

138, 136, 303 

366, 370, 378 

337, 33L 

148, 150, 159 

«37, 23i> 23«» ^.=J8 


«54» «59» 2^0 
148, 150 

319, 333, 337 

128, 137 

138, T40 

138, 141, 148, 306 

360, 364 

l^^y 370, 372, 378 

378, 381, 383, 388, 395 
24 — 2 




Tarleton, Rev. W. H., No. 3, 1861 
Taylor, Rev. S. B., No. 3, 1840 
Thompson^ Rev. fV, T,, No. 7, 1829 
Tower, Rev. Ernest, Bow^ 1844 
Tuckey, H. E., No. 3, 1852 


Upcher, Jiev. A. W., No. 7, 1836 
Uppleby, G. C, No. 5, 1840 

Vialls, C. M., Stroke, 1840 and 1841 


Waddington, W. H., No. 6, March 1849 

Warner, T. D., Coxswain, 1868 . 

Warren, Rev. Charles, No. 3, 1829 , 

Watney, Herbert, Bow, 1865 ; No. 7, 1866, 1867 

Watson, Rev. H. S., No. 3, 1864 

Watson^ fV,, No. 3, 1842 . 

Wharton, Rev. R., Coxswain, 1857, 1858 

Wilder, Edmond, No. 5, 1846 . 

Williams, Rev. H., No. 5, 1856, 1858, 1859 

Wilson, J. B., No. 4, 1863 . 

Wingfield, Rev. W., Coxswain, 1856. 

Wolstenholme, E. P. (BarristeT-at-Law), No. 7 


Wood, J. G. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 3, 1868 
Wray, J. C. (Barrister-at-Law), Stroke, March 

and Dec. 1849 

Wright, Rev. John, Stroke, 1854 . , , 


Yatman, W. H. (Barrister-at-Law), No. 6, 1839 
Young, F. J., No. 4, 1869 . • , . . 















159. 163 

19^. 19* 

"8, I34» 305 
272, 274, 278, 283 

266, 269 

'74. 179 
227, 232 

186, 188 

2x9, 222, 232, 238 

260, 263 


j86, 189, 317 
288, 291 

192, 195, 201 

148, 151 
«95. «98, 337 


Table * Pagb 

I. Life-Table of Oxford University Crews from 1819 to 1859. 375 

II. Life-Table of Cambridge University Crews from 1839 to 

1859 . . . 37<^ 

III. Life-Table of United University Crews from 1819 to 1859. 377 

IV. Effects of Training and Boat-Racing on the health of the 

Crews • • . 378 

V. Honours gained by Members of the Oxford Eights . . 379 

VI. Honours gained by Members of the Cambridge Eights . 380 
VII. Table shewing the number of men supplied to the Uni- 
versity Eight by the different Colleges, from 1829 to 

1869. • • 383 

VIII. Weight in health in proportion to height .... 383 

IX. Variation in the weight of Oxford University Oars who 

rowed twice 384 

X. Variation in the weight of Cambridge University Oars 

who rowed twice 385 

XI. Variation in the weight of Oxford University Oars who 

rowed three times • 386 

XII. Variation in the weight of Cambridge University Oars 

who rowed three times 386 

XIII. Variation in the weight of Oxford University Oars who 

rowed four times 387 

XIV. Variation in the weight of Cambridge University Oars 

who rowed four times 387 

XV. Shewing the Expectation of Life in Males from 9o to 

65 years of age ••..,... 388 













w ^ 

>A CO 






on of life 
to Dr Farr) 

Of eight 

healthy men 

at 3o. 


fiTi cQ lo ©0 CO <*s to wi CO ro .to wj CO ro to *o 


(acc6rding 1 

Of a healthy 
man at ao. 



Extent to which 

life exceeded 

or fell short of 


so* ««i-c^wic«*\pt*toiO'«#''«#'-*'«#' 

+ I+ + + + + + + + + + + + + + 



Average length 

of life of each 

Oarsman after 

the Race. 


io\o »^ SO 5«vp to 

vb bs«* i* Ovwie« 0*0 «'»«*e!!:!t"*± 




length of each 

Crew's life after 

the Race. 

»^>0 -^C* «OQ0 «OQ0 O^O C« c* « C« 

t^ M «o to 0\vo to M ro>0 >o wa wd «0 «o 



Years deducted 

for unsound 


• ••...* . T ••■•••.. 

• ••••• *4.*....v. 


exj)ectation of 

life in 1869. 

NO OP "^-OO 0000 f« ^OOOVO '^«« 
r* Cs «• t« 'S »OVO vO 00 r« -^ ^ »ovo t^ 



Years of life 
enjoyed collec- 
tively by each 
Crew from the 
Race to 1869. 

ii^vo 00 <4- M r^ c« Q t^vo ^vO 00 
«« t^ «< •- t^ >»^0 «o (O c< Onqo 00 


Year of Race. 


osvo o^O M «• «ovo oso\c« xt-vo »^ao 0^ 

W f0r0^^^'^'^^^*0«0i0>0tf3tf) 





























«i iE-g- 

,000000 gooooooooo 

to f^ f^ Wi CO CO CO CO CO CO CO CO CO CO #0 ffi ■ 



»^ 0.-i 


°6 °i 



a health 
an at 20. 


o ^ 


t^ B 


_ .. -. .. 1. 


'9. ^ 

.H'O • 

\0«0t>. C«»0 00»>.»O<it. 


• •• ••* •• •• 

SS-SiS . . 

00 »*i CO «« «•' « *» CO tNi On ««■*■* 



+ + + + -!:+ 1 + 1 + 1 + + + J 1 


K ••« M a> 



f.*^ V 

beu.s . 

of ea 
an af 

•vo «n f^ c« op to ^ r^ *'^^ 
oo*oroo cob t^I-"t^t>i^- b »• ^»obs 



of life 

•^<^<<|>iO«h^C« "<■€• ^CO-^-^-iTfJCO 



ength of eac 
rews life aft 

the Rstce. 

0\'*0 "**• coc^sovooo i-«.e» c* •♦t^ 



cofO(0'^(OcOc« fOf co«« «ococoe*<o 







a a . 

• • 

rs ded 

r uhsoi 








•fcl-s . 

oovo ooo *^c«vooooQvo ooovdoooo 


ON c «• VO -* CO 0»vo 0»- '*•-• "'♦••OONro 


I^Mff^MM M»«C**^nC*C«MC< 


a u.v 

^ ahs 



f life 
im the 

•- 00 O C* t^ O "* "♦CO O 00 t^ '♦so »0 ON 

0\ CO CO fO ON ON COVO O NO '- O OvOO *— 














T ** 


ONNO On Q « e* »OVO on On e« •♦NO t>»00 0» 
e» fO'0^"*'^-^'^"«^"*«r>»oio«o«o»o 

A. - 



























i-a CO 



I— • 




on of life 
to Dr Farr) 

Of sixteen 
healthy men at 





(accordihg t 

Of a healthy 
man at aa 



Extent to which 

life exceeded 
or fell short of 


w> tf)QO 00 OS w)^ 0\ <0 coop 



Average length 

of life of each 

Oarsman after 

the Race. 

10 »O00 00 0\ »OVO Ov <0 t>»00 
• ••• • •• ••.T_» 

x>. (« et mvo e» »o — vo "*oo e« «o ■* 0% •* 



length of life 

of the Crews 

after the Race. 

0» M VO ^VO »^ •-• »^ '*• »O00 t^ -^ "♦VO 0\ 
•OOO 00 (O (OOO NO V)00 M Q 00 0\ <^>0 

»«>OVO rot^vo wavo •or«NO>ONO x>>vo ^D 



Years deducted 
. for unsound 

• • • •» • • .^ .^ 'Si * *Zi'* • • 

a • • .v. .MM .^4 .^4 • • • 



expectation of 

life in Z869. 

00 NO ■«•• »OVO 'il-VO VOOP^■O^OW «« 
NO M '<^O^i-i00VO fON- OnVO to On •- >• "^ 


Years of life 
enjoyed collec- 
tively by the 
Crews from the 
Race to 1869. 

M loVO 0«-»»^'^'000t>»"* «>.00 « ^ On 
Onno ^ ■^ k^ *^ «iNO "^ ^ fO On *^ lo 
iO'«^'*'**'*'*«3««e« «o«« «« c« ^ 1^ »^ 



Year of Race. 

►4 « 

OnNO OS »- <* »'5>e On ON «* ■"♦•VO r^OO Os 
f« '<0rf»'*''«h'*'*''«hf'**«O »o "O »o up vp 















Year of 











• • • 








• •• 




• • • 




• * • 









I 849-1 











• •• 




• • • 








• • • 




• • • 




• •• 




• •• 








• •• 


• • • 








' 5 

















N.B. This table refers solely to the Oarsmen, the Coxswains not being 



















:H : I 








(3 u 

vi o 





^ : • 

O V O ^ M 











gj OOOOQOOOOO 0000000000000000000000 0000 0000 

























































IS -^ 
d <a 



GO'S '^n^- 

U CP-4 >-• rO 

u 'O C o 

• CD • * k*4 



J3 : 







4^ m O 


• • • 

• • 



• • • 

Naime, i 
W. Johns 





wO • • • • 

' ^"^ • • • • 

<^ • • •• • 







^^ • • • • 



O 4^ 

•^ o 



O «| O^ 0»V0 «0 0\0^0^0'0\0 O^ i-»-^ lo »r.VO VO O* 0\ «* ^ "t- 

SO e«e4rOfOrO(OrorO(0^-<f'4>^^^^'^^^^tOiO>0 










• • • • 


• ••#•••• ^M • • • 

-• W CO 

o . . . . "^ L)^ 




o ^ 



o G a 

''^ 123 

. « > 

O d 









»— I 


::::::::::::::: c<t 



>0 *^ X^OO O^ 9> O •>• 'O «CVp 1^ t>«00 OS 0\ 

10 10 io to to lovo vo^o^O^^O^O^^O 








LEGES FROM 1829 TO 1869. 


Christ Church «6 

Balliol 19 

Brasenose 17 

University 14 

Exeter i« 

Pembroke 9 

Merton 8 

St John's 7 

Trinity 7 

Oriel 5 

Wadham 5 

Worcester 5 

Corpus 3 

Magdalene 3 

New College « 

Queen's « 

Jesus * 

Lincoln i 

Magdalene Hall 1 



Trinity 66 

St John's ^5 

Cains 10 

Magdalene 8 

Trinity Hall 8 

Corpus 6 

Jesus 6 

Emmanuel 5 

Christ's 4 

Pembroke 3 



Downing ; 


St Peter's 


N.B. This table refers only to the Oarsmen, the Coxswains not being 




(From Dr Chambers' Gulstonian Lectures). 



weight of 

9650 healthy 




Bronze Her- 



cules, British 



a in. 

St. lbs. 

St. lbs. 

St. lbs. 

St. lbs. 

5 I 

8 8 

8 7 

9 « 

9 7 

5 2 


8 11 

9 8 

10 10 

5 3 

9 7 

9 4 


II 4 

5 4 

9 13 

9 " 

10 7 

II 10 

5 5 

10 1 

10 1 


13 4 

5 6 

10 5 

10 9 

II 8 

13 13 

5 7 

10 8 

II 3 

la I 

13 7 

5 8 


II zo 

13 10 

14 I 

5 9 

II 8 

12 3 

13 « 

14 II 

5 10 

13 I 

13 II 

13 II 

15 5 

5 *' 

12 6 

13 4 

14 6 

15 13 


11 10 



16 10 







r«R«. , .^^ 

Pins or Minus. 

ft lbs. 

St. lbs. 


" 4 


+ 10 

M 3 

13 « 

+ 13 

i« 13 

11 8 

- 5 

II 4 

II 4i 

+ 1 

10 13 

II 7 

+ 8 

II 3 

II 84 

+ 5i 

II 5 

II 9 

+ 4 

II 2 

II 8 

+ 6 

10 \^ 

II 7 

+ 9 

II 6 


+ 5 


10 10 

" 4 




10 9 

+ 3 

10 II 

10 13 

+ I 

II 10 

II 9 

- I 


II 3 

+ 3 

II 8 


+ 3 

10 8 

10 13 

+ 4 




II 13 

+ 3 


13 3 

+ 3 

19 13 


+ I 

II 7 

II 8 

+ I 

i« 3 

i« 5 

+ 3 

10 8 


+ 6 

II 13 


+ I 

II 5i 


+ 3i 

i« 4 

13 6 

+ 3 

II a( 

II 3* 

+ I 

II 13 

II 8 

- 4 

Average gain in weight 

+ 3-8 







First Race. 

Second Race. 

Plas or Minus. 

St. lbs. 

8t lbs. 


12 9 

12 10 

+ 1 

II 9 

II 12 

+ 3 

II \\ 

" 4 

+ 2i 

12 7 



10 12 

10 II 


II o# 

11 6 


11 8 

II 8 

• « • 

12 4 

12 6 

+ 2 

12 4 

12 6 

+ 2 

10 7 

10 9 

+ 2 

12 8 

12 12 

+ 2 

12 8 

r2 12 

+ 4 

II 8 

II 8 

• • • 

11 8 


+ 3 

11 10 


+ 4 

10 12 


+ 2 

II 2 

" 3 

+ 1 

11 8 

10 13 


12 I 

12 4 

+ 3 

II 12 

II 10 


10 II 

II 2 

+ 5 

10 4 

10 5 

+ 1 

II 8 

II 6 


" 5 

II 4 



II 3 

+ 3 


II 3 

+ 3 


II 6 

+ 6 

12 3 

12 9 

+ 6 

12 8 

13 3 


II 2 

II 3 

+ 1 

— 1 

Average, gain in weight 

+ 1-7 

u. o. 






First Race. 

Second Race. 

Third Race, 

Plus or Minus. 

St lbs. 

St lbs. 

St lbs. 


II 4 

II 9 

II 7 

+ 5^ 

13 8i 

13 4 


- 1\ 

12 4 

13 4 

13 3i 

- \ 

lO lO 

II 3 

II 7i 

+ 11 

lO II 

II 3 

lO 12 

+ I 

n 3 

11 4 

II 5 

+ 3 

13 4 

13 7 

13 io| 

+ 6i 

9 13 

10 I 

10 3 

+ 5 


erage gain in 'tik 


+ 3*5 



First Race. 

Second Race. 

Third Race. 

Plus or Minus. 

8t lbs. 

8t lbs. 

st lbs. 


lo 13 

II 4 

II 3 

+ 4 


10 13 


- I 

II 3 

II 4 


+ 9 

10 81 

II 9 


+ 54 


II 3 

II 4 

+ 4 

13 I 

13 4 

13 5 

+ 4 

Average gain in w( 


+ 4'i 





First Race. 






Second Raoe. 

St. lbs. 
II 8 

la 3 

Third Race. 




Fourth Raoe. 




Average gain in weight 


Plus or Minus. 

+ 5 
+ 4 

+ 27 



First Race. 

Second Race. 

Third Race. 

Fourth Race. 

Plus or Minus. 

St. lbs. 

II 6 

11 la 
10 7 



St. lbs. 
II la 
II 11 
10 a 
la 4 

St. lbs. 

la I 
II 13 
10 4 
la 8 

St lbs. 

la I 

10 6 
la 9 


+ 9 

+ 9 

Average g 

'ain in weight 

• « * ■ •« 

+ 3*5 






(According 1 

to Dr Farr.) 

(According to 

Mr Finlaison.) 


of Life. 


of Life. 


of Life. 


of Life. 




















































' 21 




20 98 








20 30 


. 35 






















































1 6 -02 

















































i 41 








: 4« 










Academy at Athens, 80 
Academical pursuits, will training 

interfere with ? 64 
Acrobats, 70 

Active lives led by old crews, 61 
Acute inflammation, loi 

— intellect, 50 

— rheumatism, 110 
Adipose tissue, 88, 113 
Advantages of an island, 121 
iEschylus, 70 

Age, omission of, 113 
Air-cells, additional, 48 
Air, pestilential, 123 
Alarming accident, 34 
Albumen, increase of, 104 
Allurements of academic life, 73 

— of large towns, 82 
Alma Mater, 71, 121 
America, 43 
Analysis, result of, 8 
Anamometer, 114 
Ancient mariners, 22 
Aneurism, 109 

— case of, 39 
Anglo-Saxon Race, 126 
Antagonistic muscles, increase of, 46 
Antithesis between mind and mat- 
ter, 48 

Appointments gained by cramming, 

Aptitude, natural, disregarded, 118 
Aristotle, 75 
Army, health of, 28 
Asthenic form of disease, 10 1 
Asthma and hay-fever cured by 

rowing, 44 
Athletes, various orders of, 4 
Athletic contests, influence of on 

health, 2 
Athleticism too enthralling, 69 
Atlantic crossed by hardy youths, 1 19 

Augmented constitutional vigour, 49 
Australia, 27, 43 
Auxiliaiy boats recommended, 76 
Average size of the flower of our 

youth, 116 
Axillary region, 117 


Balance of circulation restored, 53 
Baneful effects of rowing, 63 

— inheritance, 123 

" Barbarized athletes," 66 
** Barbarous hardness,*' 94 
Barker, late Dr, 120 
Barracks in hilly districts, t22 
Beddoe, Dr, on bulk, 79, 83 
Benefited, 41 
Benefits of war, 125 
Best-lived crew, 23 
Biceps, 117 

— expansion of, 45 
Blacksmiths, 118 
Bleeding at the nose, T02 
Blindness of relatives, 32 

Blood, alteration in relative propor- 
tions of, 104 

— a source of irritation, 105 

— disordered, 104 

— quality of, loi 

— loss of (0), 17 

— loss of (/^, 17 

— nourishing mind and muscle, 6$ 
Blood-vessel, breaking of, x i 

— rupture of {Z> )r 34 

— rupture of, 107 

— increase in size and number of, 

47. 48 
Blue ribbon of river, 65 
Boat racing, 5 

— baneful effects of, 96 

Bodily frame, how influenced by 

hard muscular exertion, 44 
Bones still malleable, 79 
Brain better aUe to work, 49 



Brain-work exacting, 50 

Breezy influx of healthy aerial tide, 

Brent, Mr, 111 

Brewing Bavarian beer, 125 

British maidens, 119 

• — pluck, 2 

— soldiers, three regiments of, 84 
Bronchial haemorrhage, 102 
Bulwarks of the state, 126 
Burning of midnight oil, 82 


Cam, river, 46 

— improvement of the, 12O 
Cambridge crews* disadvantages, 121 

— to London, 56 
"Camford," 93 
Canada, 43 

** Canker at the core,** 62 
Capillaries newly formed, 48 
Cardiac dilatation, 109 

— disease, 38 . 
Carbonic add given off, 120 
Casino repulsive to healthy mind, 81 
Casualties ascribed to Boat-racing, 98 
Causes of death, 26 

Centrifugal expansion, 49 
Cessation of exerpise, 115 
Chalky or cheesy mass, 100 
Chambers, Dr, iii 
Champions of the prize-ring, 3 
Change recruiting to the lungs, 108 
Characteristics of health, 116 
Cheese-like appearance, 103 
Chest, circumference of, 49 

— cramped movements of, 87 

— capacious, 117 

— conformation of, 1 14 

— may still be enlarged, 79 

— how affected by rowing, 46 — 51 

— cold on, 106 

— development of, 47 
■ — effects of hard exercise on, 48 

— g:ood, prized, 49 
Choice of apt successors, 76 
Chronic catarrhal pneumonia (de- 
scription of), 100 

Civic gown, 85 
Clergymen, select lives, 25 
Close confinement, x8 
Coal-whippers, 37 
Cold neglected [F)^ 13 

Collie Eights, 6 

Colquhoun sculls, 65 

** Coming collapse," 55 

Comforting assurance of man of 

science, 62 
Compiling of lexicons, 125 
Competitive examinations, 90 

— contests, who are to avoid, 107 
Conflicting evidence, 35 
Consequences of compulsory school- 
ing, 121 

— of early inactivity, 89 
Constitutional vigour, how to ac- 
quire, 49 

"Constitutional," reading man*s, 50 
Consumption, said to be fatal to 
Oarsmen, 98 

— tubercular, description of, 98 

— a term too widely applied, 98 

— inherited, 99 

— distinct forms assumed by, 100 

— * 'pulmonary," 101 — 105 

— other forms of, 102 

— description of constitutional, 105 

— **systemic," 105 — 107 

— percentage of deaths from, 27 

— hereditary (6'), 13 

— forms of, 50 

— remedy for, 81 
Consumptive {H)^ 13 
Cornelia, 63 
Cornwall men, 79 

Covered buildings, exercise in, un- 

exhilarating, 119 
Cowley marsh, 67 
Crimean war, 28 
Critical nature of attack, loi 
Criticism of evidence, 29 
Cruelty to animals, 3, 1 19 
Cruel neglect of muscular education. 

Cubic inches of air, 50 
Cumberland men, 79 
Cunningly collated facts and figures, 



Danger liable to be incurred, 109 

— understood, 78 
Decarbonizing the blood, 50 
Degenerative changes, 60, 83 
Delicate fibre, 31, 61, 106. 

— mothers, 124 

— subject,- 30 



Delicate inquiry, 35 
Deterioration of race, 83, 12a 
Development, unusually energetic, 

Diathesis, haemorrhagic, 107 

Dietetic excesses, 94 

Difference between A and ^f 91 

Digestion, secretion and nutrition, 68 

Discipline, moral, 72 

Disastrous voyage, 3 

Discrepancy in evidence, 34 

Dispelling the blues, 97 

Distribution, even, of nerve force, 69 

Diverting of drains, 121 . 

Dogs exposed to bad air, 120 

Dorsal regions, 117 

Doubtful testimony, 3. 

Duke of Wellington, 90 

"Dundrearies" of the Universities, 

Duration of life among University 

Oars, 19 
"Dying Gladiator," in 
Dyspnoea, 51 
Dyspepsia, 19 
Dyspeptic irritability of mind, 51 


Education most required, the, 121 
Educational value of our old Uni- 
versities, 80 
Eccentric formulas of swearing, 93 
Effeminate days, 55 
Eighteen-twenty-nine crews, 20, 21, 

22, 42, 43 
Elasticity of tissue, 59 
Elbow-joint excised (C), 10 
Elite of University, 67 
Elbcir of life, 86 

Emperor's German Guardsmen, 81 
Empire, duration of, 83 
Enervating conditions, 122 
England, future mothers of, 118 

— north of, 123 

English strength, decay of, 84 
Engorgement of lungs, 53 
Equator, trying work on the, 43 
Evidence of relatives, 36 

— of advancing years, 59 

— important mass of, 40 
Exceptional case {B\ 10 
Exercise, beneficial, 108 

— injurious, 105 
Exhaustion, exaggerated, 56 

Exhaustion, undue, 31 

Exhausted condition of University 

Oars, 54 
Exotics, highly forced, 90 
Expansion of lungs, 1 18 
Expectation of life at twenty, 20 
"External life," organs of, 6i 
Extraordinary pluck, 32 


Failing of national coffers, 126 
Fainting, case of (A^), 16, 35 
Farr*s, Dr, English life-tables, 20 
Fashionable boazding school^ 119 
" Fatal indulgence," 107 
Feats in walking and running, 56 

— of athletes chronicled, i 
Feeble sickly race, 83 

Fevers fatal to robust frames, 26 

Fibres, new formation of, 47 

** Finishing," 119 

First class, 64 

Firet term, importance of, 73 

Flagging energies of the frame, 87 

Food, expensive, 122 

Foreign body, presence of injurious, 

Fortuitous aggregation of 300 men. 

Fortunate son of business father^ 89 
Foundation of statements, 4 
Four Oarsmen who have not. an- 
swered, 41 
Fragrant Havannah laid aside, 72 
FraU thread of life, 32 
French striplings, 124 
Full deep chest, 57 


Gas and smoke, 122 
Gastrocnemius developed, 48 
Gauging constitutional vigour, 61 
German troops, stamina of, 124 

— industry, fruits of, 102 
Gradual preparation recommended, 


"Graduates, sweet girl," 70 

Graves, late Dr, 26 

Great Britain, 126 

Greece, athletes of ancient, 3, 4 

Grenadiers of Frederick William 

the First, 81 
Groundless forebodings, 89 
. Growth in abeyance, 79 




Guardians of public order^ 84 
Guards, 28, 34 
Gulstonian lectures, j 1 1 
Gutter i^rchins, 121 
Gymnasia, our militaiy, 7^ 

— ancient, 80 

Gymnasiarchs, importance of, 80 
Gymnastics for recruits, 48 


Haemoptysis, io« 

Haiti ro\i^ng career, effect of, 39 

Harmless recreations saddled with 

odium, 63 
•'I&rryGow,*' 118 
Haughton, Rev. Professor, 53 
Health, necessity of, 83 
Healthy channel for nervous energy, 


— man, description of, 116 

— parents, 123 

— blood requirecl, 48 

— man's exercise, 86 
Heart disease, case of, 58 

— rapidly fatal forms of, 37 
Heart, a muscle, 61 

— healthy, 39 

— hypertrophied (B,\ 10 

— pain in apex of, (A'.), 15 
•— valve of, torn, 38 

— afflicted undergraduates, 97 

— refractwy, not soothed by pipe 

or n6vel, 97 

— affections, «8 

— danger fpom thej 109 

— rending labour, 41 

— a small muscle, 53 

— of old man, work done by, 54 

— mentioned, 32, 33 

— knocking at ribs, 05 
Heaviest old oar, 1 10 
Hecatombs of young Englishmen, 29 
Height, 33 

— to be deprecated, 1 10 
Herald of impending decay, loa 
Hercules in build, 61 

•' — Bronze," iii 
Hereditary consumption, 3a 

— heart-disease, 109 

— diseases, how to diminish, 81 
Heterogeneous company, 77 

" High," to do the, 73 
High tension, state of, 75 
Highland moor, 113 

Honours gained by university Oars, 

Hints for Captains of Eights, 113 
Hope of the house, 70 
Hours for intellectual culture, 68 
Hybrid monstrosity, 93 
HjrpocUondriac, method of quieting 

the, 97 


Idle and dissolute, the, 72 
Idyllic life encroached on, 85 
Ill-starred mortals, 99 
Importance, of available lung tissue, 

— of early literary application, 71 
Impossibility of tracing every College 

Oar, 6 
Improvident marriages, 122 
Impure air, interferes with training, 

Increase of temperature, 115 
Indications of failing power, 82 
Indigestion, 105 
Indiscriminate warning, 2 
Inflammatory infiltration, 100 
Inflammation of lungs, 50 
Injured, \\ 
Injury to Oarsmen, reasons of, 8 

— 17 cases of, 7 — 18 
Insanity, how to prevent, 81 
Insidious influences, 84 
Insinuations against Oarsmen, 93 

Instances of injury in a hospital 
patient, 38 

— 01 benefit, 43, 44 

Insurance ofHces, for select lives, 

23. 25i 80. 88 
Intellectual influence of athleticism 

(Mr R. F. Clarke on), 66 
Intemperance injurious, 39 
"Internal life," organs of, ^i 
Invalids, 123 
Invaluable boon, 86 
"Inverse development,** very rare, 

Iphigenias, modem, 118 
Isis, rowing on the, 46, 120 
Isolated cases of imprudence, 36 


Jackson a prize champion, 119 

Jaded girls, 119 

Judicious course of training, 97 



Judicious exercise, 60 

— training, 108 

Jumble, heterogeneous, n8 

** King's Parade,** to saunter in, 73 


Lacedaemonians, 13 1 

Lady Rowers, 1 19 

Laennec, theory of, 98 

Latitudinarian proclivities, 40 

L^alized pillage, 135 

Lent Term, 76 

Liberty of the subject, 112 

Life tables, 19, 20, also in Ap- 

Liquid flesh, 104 
"Limb-work," 46 
London-bred boy, 43 

— adapted for "sacking," 126 

" — tbier^old Oar who foundered in, 

Loose-fibred men, 113 

Loss of Germans, inappreciable, 1 24 

Louis, theory of, 98 

Loyal devotion evoked by sym- 
pathy, 92 • 

Lucknow, old Oar shot in, 27 

Lumbar bones, 117 

Lungs, pabulum of, 123 

— disease of, 27, 28, 33 

— increase of, 48, 50 

— functional activity of, exalted, 50 

— affected (^), 9 

— affected (0), 17 

— shrunk and atrophied, 82 
Lycseum at Athens, 80 


" Man with the heart," 96 
Manchester Infirmary, 83 
Manly vigorous mind, 51 
Manufacturing districts, people of, 


" Marks," deceptive criteria, 92 
Martyr to dyspeptic disturbances, 

Marvellous gain to national health, 

Maximum amoont of endurance, 

" Memoria technica," 90 

Men of muscle, 3 
"Mens sanain corpore sano," 51 
Mental and social culture, 67 
Method of prosecuting inquiry, 29 
Michaelmas Term, 76 
Military service, enforced, 121 
Milo, future, 72 
Mischief at the old spot, 100 
Miserable offspring, 122 
Moderate exercise beneficial, 107 
** Moderations " omitted, 65 
Modem research, light thrown by, 

— warfare, difference in, 125 
Moloch, 63 

Moltke, 124 

** Moral debasement" of No. 8, 93 

— and physical vigour combined, 79 

— effect of training, 43 
Morality, standard of, 63 
Mortality among Oarsmen, 25 
Mournful heritage, a, 82 
Muscle constantly working, 55 
Muscles used in rowing, 45 

— and mind yokefellows, 65 

— men of, 3 

— slightingly alluded to, 49 

— antagonizing, 46 

Muscular excels merely entails per- 
sonal harm, 81 

Muses, attractive society of^ 67 

Music-hall, not so tempting to well 
regulated minds, 81 ' 

Mysteries of trade, 85 


Nape of neck, 117 
National physique benefited, 122, 

— decadence of the Greeks, 80 

— pluck, 125 

— health, 126 

— life-blood, 1 23 
Navy, health of, 28 
Neighbours* cupidity, 126 
Nerve force, 68 

Nervous energy, well-spring of, 69 

— man, the, 94, 95 
New tissues built up, 90 

— Zealand, 43 
Newspaper controversy, 51 
Niemeyer, Professor, 39, 99 
Nineteenth centur)*, humane senti* 

ments of, 123 



Noblest intellectual faculties, 50 
Northumberland men, 79 
Number of old Oars, 8 


Oar, championship of the, 119 
Oarsmen, comparative physique of 
rival, 116 

— self-taught, 117 
Obliquity of judgment, ft I 
Objection to athletics, o^ 
Occasional day's rest, 76 
Occasions on which exertion is 

harmful, 08 
Ocean bulwarks, 121 
"Odd event," 70 
"Old Oars," social position of, 5 

— number of, 5 

— number of different races rowed 

in by, 15, 16 

— academical distinctions gained by, 

65, d^ 
Omission of minor ailments, 19 

Open air beneficial, 119 

Opinions of College friends, 30 


Ordinary English ratepayer, 85 

Organ, irritable and over-excited, 

Organs ** internal and external" in- 
timately interwoven, 62 

— great internal, 106 
Original of portraits, 94 

— research, by Dr Beddoe, 79 
Orthodox methods of spending the 

day, 86 

— doctrine regarding consumption, 

Osseous system mapped out, 79 

Outward form transmitted, 80 

Overtaxing of strength \H)^ 13 

Over-exertion (iT/), 16 

" Oxbridge," 93 


Pain in the angle of the chest (^), 9 

— in the side (0), 16 
Painful spectacle, 54 
Palpitation of the heart, 42 

" Paralyzing exhaustion," 57 
Paris, siege of, 125 
Parkins, the Cornish wrestler, 112 
Parkes, Professor, 85 

Pastry-cook avoided, 72 
Pateifamilias, 58, 70, 87 
Pectoral muscles, 47 
Pent-up muscular energy, 1 19 
Percentage of death among old Oars, 

25, 26, 27 
Perfection of height, 1 1 1 
Perilous health, 75 
Periodical repose enjoyed by limbs 

and muscles, 62 
Perpetual training undesirable, 69 
Personal experience of old Oars, 40 
Persons deficient in physical vigour, 


Pet hobby of leading men, 90 
Phantom crustaceans, 77 
Phase, inner, of college life, 31 
Phenomena, morbid, 104 
Phyllis, 63 

Physical activity, simple forms of, 

— capacity for work, 50 

— capital, 60 

— disqualifications for rowing, 98 

— education, importance of, 1 2 i 

— toil, diverted, 85 

— value of gymnastic instruction, 47 

— vigour wanting in, 11, 83 
Physiological law, 122 

— reasons, 73 
Physiology, teachings of, 52 
Physique requisite for rowing, 117 
Picture of rude health, 87 
Pictures, statues, and works of art, 

Piping seasons, 126 

Pleasurable recreation, 78 
Pleurisy, 50 
Polite education, 64 
Pot-hunters of the river, 77 
Portions of old Oars* letters pub- 
lished, 40 
Precious heir-loom, the most, 81 
Precocious development, 32 
Preference given to stamina, 76 
Premature decay, 122 

— old age, 88 

Prey to epidemics, 83 
Primeval votaries of the oar, 42 
** Professional crammer," 91 
Proportion of cases ascribed to con- 
sumption, 99 
Psychical qualities transmitted, 125 
Pugilistic encounter, 94 



Pulmonary vessels, inherent delicacy 

of, 102 
Puny frames, 50 


Query addressed to old Oars, 5 
Question regarding time spent in 
training, 69 

— r^^ding cultivation of muscle, 

Quill-wielding gladiators, 73 


Railway refreshment room, 117 
Rate of mortality among Oarsmen, 

Re-absorption of mtruding mass, 


Recruits, gymnastics for, 47 
Red corpuscles, 105 
Refusal of narrow chests, 80 
Registrar-General's Report, 37 
Relation between officers and men, 

Renewal of animal tissue, 60 
Renovation of animal tissue, 61 
Revelry and buffoonery, 75 
Rheumatic fever, no 

— pains, 19 

Ribs rigidly stiff, 83 
Risk of re-action, 75 • 
Ritualistic excesses, 70 
Rival candidates A and ^,91 
Rivers polluted, 120 
Rowing, a scape-goat, 63 

— beneficial, 42, 108 

— advantageous, 118 

— on the sea, 117 

Rowdy reprobates of fiction, 94 
Royal Institution, 53 


** Sad fate of old University Oars," 5 
"Safety valve" for youthful vigour, 

Sailor ascending rigging, 45 
Sailors, 118 
Salford Hospital, 83 
Scepticism of old Oars, 37 
Scholastic damsels, 119 
School "paragon, " g\ 
Scotch, mental and physical vigour 

of, 79 
Scotch moors, 9a 

Scotchmen, 123 

"Scratch Fours," harmful, 77 

Scrofula, means of averting, 8r 

Seamstress, arms of, 45 

Second wind, 51 

Secret of trainer's success, 75 

Sedentary pursuits, evils of, 82 

— life, evils of a (P^ Q, and A'), 17, 

18, 19 
Seeds of disease (£), 12 
Serious exhaustion (^), 14 
Severe simplicity of Spartan attire, 

— course of training, 107 
Signal for the start, awaited, 52 
Signals of distress, 59 

" Silver thread of sea,'* 121 

" Simian descent," 70 

Simple diet, 123 

Sixteen University matches, 20 

Skilful adviser puzzled, 96 

"Slaking the thirst of early am- 
bition," 66 

Sleepless vigils of heart and lungs, 

*' Slums " of our great cities, 121 

Smith wielding hammer, 45 

Smouldering embers of intelligence 
aroused, 94 

Socialistic crotchets, 70 

Social position, 71 

Soldiers, average height of strong, 

Solution difficult, 40 

Sophronistse, 80 

Span-short, of years, 24 

Sparta, i2X 

Spirometer, 114 

Spitalfield weavers, 84 

Sport of the seasons, 83 

Spring, a prize champion, 112 

Spurious aquatic renown, 77 

"Stale" men, 74, 106 

— at time of race (C), 8, 10 
Statistics, apparent discrepancy in, 


— and facts required, 4 

Steam-engine, the whirl of the, 82, 

Straight back, 117 

Striped muscular fibre, strength of, 

"Stroke Oars" culprits, 93 

Strong and vigorous manhood, 89 



Stunted receptacle of lungs, 83 
Suggestions regarding the men to 

be trained, 94 
Sweat of the brow, 85 
Swiss mountains, 90 
Symmetry given by rowing, 118 
Synonymous, consumption and tu- 
bercle considered, 99 

Tables, explanation of, 10 

— favourable result of, 23 

— stern, of statistical investigation, 

Tactics, difference in, 57 
Tailor's skill, 84 

** Taking of cold shower baths," 93 
Talavera, battle of, 84 
Tankard moderately indulged in, *J2 
Tapering fingers, 31 
Teeth, good, a sign of health, 117 
Telling statements, 42 
Tenacity of heart undermined, 39 
Tennyson, quotation from, 45 
Thermometer, 115 
"Theseus," iii 
Thorax, 47 
Thoracic defects corrected by g)rm- 

nastics, 80 

— power, test of, 114 
Thoroughbreds of human race, 32 
Thoughtless exuberance, 94 
Three R*s, 11 1 

Thucydides, 70 
Timid brain of alarmist, 29 
Tissues not completely set, 1 10 
Tobacco injurious, 19 
"Torpid races," injurious, 78 
Toys, German, carving of, 125 
Transparent skin, 31 
Tranquillizing sensation, 51 
" Trial Eights,'* practice of depre- 
cated, 73, 74 
Trivial ailments may become grave, 

Tubercles, 98 

— death, without presence of, 10 r 
Tubercular theory untenable, 101 
Twenty-five, a perfect age, 112 
Two years* seasoning in the ranks, 

Types of pulmonary disease, 104 

Unbiassed opinion impossible, 30 

Undue distress, silence of old Oars 
about, 56 

— dilatation of heart, 113 

Unfit, men constitutionally, to en- 
gage in Boat- Racing, 98 
Unforeseen misadventure, 76 
Union of mind and muscle, 78 
Uninjured, 41 
University Oars, longevity of, 19 — 25 

— men, average height of, 1 1 1 

— Boat-Race annual institution, 93 
Unsound lives, 24 
Unswerving confidence, 93 
Unwholesome pursuits, consequences 

of, 82 
Upas tree, 37 
Upper arm, 117 
Upward growth checked, in 
Urban immigration, 122 

— population, 84 

Use, the, not the abuse of rowing 
defended, 7 . 


Vague, apparently, data about da- 
maged Oars, 35 

Value of hard exercise, 49 

Varicose veins, 109 

"Varsity Oar," father of, 71 

Varying origin of consumption, 99 

Vascular system, 48, 61, 75, 109 

Victorious invader, 126 

Virchow, Professor, 99 

Violent labour increases play of 
lungs, 106 

Vital energy used, 59 

Voluntary muscles, contractions of, 


— construction of, 55 

Vulgar recreations, 119 

— mode of progression, 85 


Want of exercise injurious {P), 17 

— . (0, 18 
Waste of vital energy, 59 
Wasting of tissue, 103 
Water, good, 122 

Wealth a sorry possession, 83 
Weeds made robust, 79 
Week's rest, benefit o^ 106 
Weight in proportion to height, f 1 1 

— increase of, 112 
Well-primed invalid, 96 



Well-arranged machine, 57 
Well-trained men, rarely exhausted, 

Welsh hills, 90 

Windpipe, 52 

Wives of surpassing stature, 81 

Work done by University Oars, 54 

** — all in him," 92 

Worst-lived crew, 23 

Worship of muscle, i 

Wranglers, 65 


Y* manners, and y' customs of y* 

family man, 87 
Yearning of muscle, 118 
Years at University, importance of, 

Yorkshire men, 79 
Young ladies' seminary, 118 
Youth an advantage, 58 
— a disadvantage, 15, 115 





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