Category Archives: Images

Broken water pipe leads to discovery of rusty saber

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Boston Tea and Mad King George: The Six Degrees of Henry Angelo

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 classical canon of 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… Continue reading

Trick Shot: A two-handed thrust backwards into the thigh from the 1630’s

e0e7bd1d854ce2cae68512538c72febfSome modern martialists spend so much time arguing what the martially-minded duelist of yesteryear would have never done, it would seem that European Martial Arts, especially of the 17th and 18th centuries, was something for ultra-cautious, risk-adverse middle-aged veterans wearing leather soles on a freshly waxed floor while carrying a stack of Wedgwood china. And yet, period literature yields interesting indications that things were not what they seem…

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The unfair advantage: The subtle differences in 19th century French dueling épées

aa3Reduced weight.

Upside-down mounted blades.

A a sneakily set handle.

Early attempts in gaining an unfair advantage with épées de combat.

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“Trump voter restricts access to HEMA discovery”: HEMA, punked, blows a gasket!

17553935_10155065127702557_4645226273205536843_n.jpgTwo days ago, we offered our “restricted release” of the Alchemia Dimicandi, a recently discovered 17th-century German text on how to fight in combat to the death.

We made it free to download for those “qualified researchers” who sufficed the Trump Administration’s America First policies pursuant to the Presidential Executive Order on Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda of President Donald J. Trump, dated February 24, 2017.

You only had to meet two measly criteria to be a “qualified researcher” under that Order: You had to be a U.S. citizen or legal resident. And you had to be a registered Republican.

Is that TOO much to ask??

Well, read on…

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Revealed: Alchemia Dimicandi—A Transcription of an Unknown late 17th-ct. German Fencing Text

smallsword rostockBetween the 1940’s and the early 1960’s the Diplom Fechtmeister (licensed fencing master) Karl Lochner discovered a short German text on “fencing in earnest”.

Dating from around the late 1600’s to early 1700’s, the “Alchemia Dimicandi” of a minor German nobleman cuts through the traditional Lektion-Contra-lektion patterns of contemporary fencing pedagogy—and provides a unique glimpse at actual, hands-on dueling practice with the transition rapier or small sword…

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FencingClassics to release “missing link” late 17th-ct. German fencing manuscript!

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This recently re-discovered transcript by an anonymous German noble could fill an important gap in the documentation of German fencing approaches between Paschen and Schmidt.

Under the sponsorship of the new Administration, we’re preparing a limited release of the manuscript.

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Old School: Four Kreußlerian Foils

kr3From the late 1600’s until the first decade of the 20th century, the Kreußler method of thrust fencing dominated the use of the foil and “Rappier”. Here are four representative varieties of the weapons used…

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See You at the 2015 American Smallsword Symposium in Timonium, Md.

SmallswordGranted, it’s been a while since I’ve made it to a Historical Sword-Fighting event…

This time around, I have no excuse not to go: Victor Markland has organized what is shaping up to be a great event right down the road from my club… Continue reading

The Kriegsbuch of Ludwig von Eyb

Von Eyb KriegsbuchWe may not be up-to-date any more on what old fencing and wrestling manuals are available and accessible by now. But we just found a careful transcription of von Eyb’s fencing and wrestling sections that deserve greater exposure. Here ya go… Continue reading