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
Posted in 18th Century, American martial arts, Antiquarian Books, fencing, Foil, Saber, Sword Fighting, Uncategorized
Tagged american swordplay, cavalry saber, henry angelo, military saber
Some 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…
Upside-down mounted blades.
A sneakily set handle.
Early attempts in gaining an unfair advantage with épées de combat.
Posted in 19th Century, Duel, Epee, fencing, fencing art, HEMA, smallsword, Sword Fighting
Tagged 19th-century dueling, amberger collection, épée de combat, dueling epees, French dueling swords, j christoph amberger
The last German student to die as a result of a duel using thrusting swords—not unlike the French épée de combat—was the young jurist Adolph Erdmannsdörffer.
Buried in the village cemetery at Wöllnitz, now integrated into the Thuringia town of Jena, his grave marker recalls him as “das letzte Opfer der Stoßmensur” (the last victim of the thrust Mensur).
The worst part: It was his own fault.
On April 1, 2017, FencingClassics gave the people what they wanted:
FREE unconditional access to a FREE newly discovered resource.
What it all worth it?
“I Laughed. I Cried. It moved me, Bob.”
We conclude our 2017 April Fool’s prank with a cursory glance at the reactions of those who caught on early, those who read along in puzzlement, and those who gave full vent to their feelings of entitlement and resentment.
Two 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…
Posted in 17th Century, Antiquarian Books, Duel, fencing, fencing art, HEMA, rapier, Rapier, smallsword, Sword Fighting
Tagged Alchemia dimicandi, transition rapier, vetting algorithm
Between 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…
As indicated earlier, we are preparing a recently rediscovered short text for publication:
The Alchemia Dimicandi is a problematic document, both in regard to provenance and chronology of creation. The following provides an attempt at dating its origin.
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.
Posted in 17th Century, 18th Century, Duel, fencing, fencing art, HEMA, Images, quarterstaff, rapier, smallsword, Sword Fighting, Transcriptions
Tagged alchemy, Fechtmanuskript, fencing manuscript, german swordplay, German thrust fencing, kreussler, smallsword fencing