Monthly Archives: September 2011

Hark the Talking Camel: The Six Degrees of Henry Angelo

The Talking Camel is a writers’ site that Secret Archives Press is trying to get off the ground.

Since we’re not exactly fighting ’em off right now, we’ve recycled an elderly article that ran maybe 10 years ago in FQM. Possibly, you still might enjoy it.

Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels. But it’s also  one of the great sources of historical irony. The War of 1812 created one such irony, as far as the canon of classical fencing literature is concerned.

This one is quite complex, as indeed anything should be that manages to connect personages as diverse as a prominent member of the Boston Tea Party, Mad King George, the Hessian mercenaries—and the ubiquitous fencing master dynasty of the Angelos in a game that makes the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon look as one-dimensional as a Partridge Family reunion special…

Wiggle on…

Foil Fencing: The 1820’s “Roland foil”

Some of the British fencing master dynasties left behind more than books and instructional manuals.

The Rolands, for example, supplied us with this exceedingly rare leather-hilted foil…

Continue reading

U.S. Naval Swordplay: A.J. Corbesier

Thanks to the U.S. Naval Academy, Maryland can claim a number of famous fencing masters who left instructional manuals to posterity. One of them was the Belgian Antoine J. Corbesier. He may not have been original. But he was influential enough to have a couple of ships named after him.

Includes link to FREE, complete text of his Broadsword Exercise! Continue reading

Antiquariat: Forget Facebook, get into fencing books!

Still enraged about Facebook’s recent facelift? We say “Get a life!” Even better—get into something that hasn’t changed one bit in 100, 200, 500 years:

FencingClassics announces it has joined forces with actor-fighter-antiquarian Jared Kirby, to make both antiquarian fencing and Historical European Martial Arts resources and bibliophile appraisal services available to practitioners and collectors. Continue reading

Undiscovered Treasure? German paper mentions unlisted fencing Ms.

A passing reference in a German paper could indicate another fencing-related manuscript languishing in Berlin… Continue reading

Henry Angelo: Strategic Planning in Running a Salle

An Assault At Foils at the Angelo School of Fencing at Haymarket

Running a successful fencing club takes strategic thinking. Especially if you’ve built your business on your reputation as a fencing champion. After all, champions are not self-appointed but made—by meeting challengers.

The Angelos had first-hand experience in this. And Henry Angelo seems to have been good at playing his opponents… Continue reading

Tricks of the Trade: Johann Andreas Schmidt, 1713

Don’t you hate when that happens? Your opponent suddenly turns Luke Skywalker and starts using his foil with two hands…

No worries! Nuremberg’s Exercitienmeister Schmidt knows exactly what to do! Continue reading

Swords of Shakespeare: “Hurt Him in Eleven Places”

How much did Shakespeare know about contemporary Italian rapier fencing?

William Gaugler follows the clues from his plays into the Italian fencing literature of the 16th and 17th century. Continue reading

Data Collection: The Origins of Modern Footwork

At what point did fencing turn into an athletic sport? Could it be that the expansion of the fencing strip had anything to do with it?

FencingClassics is issuing a call for historical strip measurements! Continue reading

Over at Fencer’s Magazine: Fencing the Perfect Game

How often has this happened to you? Winning a tournament without allowing a single touch to be scored against you. Fencing the Perfect Game!

Caleb True recounts the one tournament where  everything went right for him. Read it right here…