Michael de Burgh Daly (1922 –2002) was an English physiologist and son of the renowned physiologist and Royal Society Fellow; Ivan de Burgh Daly. Daly was educated at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge and St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London in his clinical studies. In 1947 he became a house physician at St Bart’s and went on to become an Assistant Lecturer (1948) and then Lecturer (1950) at University College London. In 1958, at the age of just 36, he was appointed to the Chair of Physiology at Bart’s Medical School and Head of Department – a position he held until his retirement in 1984 at the age of 62. He then moved to the Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine, to the Department of Physiology for the remainder of his life. He worked principally on peripheral arterial chemoreceptors and respiratory-cardiovascular Integration, especially with reference to the effects of hypoxia and apnoea. His work included detailed studies of diving. His Physiological Society monograph in 1997 is rightly celebrated. Michael de Burgh Daly died on 1 March 2002 aged 79. The Physiological Society established the Michael de Burgh Daly Prize Lecture in 2002; this biennial lecture is given in memory of the distinguished physiologist, with input from the Cardiovascular & Respiratory Physiology Theme Lead.