Monthly Archives: April 2012

Preview: The Codex Amberger and its predecessors

After many a year of absolutely nothing, the dining room table is now bending with old and new books, reams of print-outs, photographs, articles, bibliographies: We’ve finally started to work on the definitive monograph to the modest 15-page anonymous manuscript fragment we acquired back in 2005.

To sucker as many experts as we can into doing our work for us, we’ll be presenting some of the preliminary work here on FencingClassics… to elicit qualified response and criticism and, yes, lavish praise.

Let’s kick off the process by presenting Sheet 8r, which may prove to be a key element in properly placing the fragment in its proper lineage… Continue reading

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Legends of the Sword: Satan fights a Mensur

The German novelist and poet Wilhelm Hauff (1802—1827) is more famous for his fairy tales than for his novels. Unreasonably so, because his Memoiren des Satan alone are better written and more enjoyable than all the semi-competent writage they throw at German literature students in college these days.

Hauff studied philosophy and theology at Tübingen. In 1826, he wrote Mitteilungen aus den Memoiren des Satan (Memoirs of Beelzebub), in which he works in some of the fencing activities of his brother, a member of the Tübinger Burschenschaft.

For the connoisseur of Gedecktes Hiebfechten, this is a rare monument of armament and strategy of the early Mensur… Continue reading

Free Resources: The Wrestling Arts of Medieval Germany

We spare no cost to proselytize the combative arts of Europe to the larger web community.

But we’re also not above letting other people foot the bill. Like those 1%ers at Google, who’ve been scanning in old books like there’s no tomorrow. Today, we bring to you a title we’d have given our eye teeth for, had it been available as an antiquarian book just five years ago:

Dr. Karl Wassmannsdorff’s Die Ringkunst des deutschen MittelaltersContinue reading

Hooked on Phonics: Dr. “Fartin'” Luther and the Gun Wad Bible

This one has absolutely nothing to do with fencing and swords.

It only goes to show what can happen to a historical text if insufficient diligence is applied reading and transcribing it.

As in the following example from a spiffy catalog, sent to me by a reputable seller of expensive-as-sin antiquarian books… Continue reading

Follow-up: “What the hell is ‘craping’…”

Oh, the humanity!

You’d think our April Fool’s joke—selling the title and teaching privilege of “Mister of Fencing” and membership in MoFO—was such a blatantly obvious and lame joke, only a sloth would’ve missed it. But apparently, MoFO and the prerequisites of owning a foil and never having earned a competitive ranking were still too subtleContinue reading

Masters of the Sword: MD Company to Claim Monopoly on Historical Fencing Accreditation

You’ve heard it here first:

SHotS is teaming up with Towson-based Secret Archives Press LLC to provide the historical fencing community with ultimate credentials. Continue reading