Italy brought some amazing tennis champions like Adriano Panatta, Nicola Pietrangeli, Francesca Schiavone… , some of the most iconic sportsbrands (Sergio Tacchini, Fila, Ellesse…) but also -and it’s less known- the first tennis book!

Tratto del Gioco della Palla is the first book written about tennis, published in 1555. Antonio Scaino, an italian priest, dedicated the book to his patron Alphonse d’Este, Duke of Ferrara.
The book discusses 5 variant ballgames, including a form of football, but the treatment of the rules and method of playing tennis is the most detailed, and all Scaino’s illustrations are of tennis.

Tratto  del Gioco della Palla

Scaino was apparently prompted to write his book after a dispute arose during a game of court tennis. In it he establishes rules and a scoring system for the game, sets the standard court sizes, and mentions some principles of etiquette to be practiced between players.
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