Fencing Art: The Survivor

He managed to escape being turned into shell casings in World War I. Melted down for war reparations during the Weimar Republic. He dodged the Nazi leveling of Breslau in 1945, and the Red Army’s knocking over what was left.

And since he ended up behind the Iron Curtain, in a different country, he even escaped the politically correct B.S. that imprints modern Germany…

"Small potatoes make the steak look bigger." Not in this case, they don't.

Good things come with small packages. Breslau University’s Fechter has been leaning on his blade for over a century now, pondering where he put his steroid supplements.

Designed by Hugo Lederer (1871-1940), Breslau’s Fechterbrunnen (Fencer’s Fountain) was cast in 1901 and installed in 1904. It even comes with a pious explanation why our muscle-bound Bender of the Épée Blade is nekkid as a jaybird:

“It is said the sculpture was a warning to the students not to gamble as one could be left naked with only one’s sword. ”

A likely story, even for the literary over-interpretation biz… who wouldn’t take a gambler’s underwear and socks before taking his sword?

The statue was originally cast in two sizes by the Martin & Piltzing Foundry of Berlin. Various other sizes of the statue are in existence. And while the larger versions these days seem to have adopted épées, smaller samples feature foils.

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