Tag Archives: rapier

The Franco-German Pragmatist: Johann Schalch’s ExercierBüchlein provides a glimpse at utilitarian swordsmanship around 1680

A recent find supplements our understanding of late 17th-century fencing practice in the Franco-Germanic cultural sphere.

—by J. Christoph Amberger

The identity of the author, Lieut. Johann(es) Schalch, remains elusive: While he may be related to the 18th-century Swiss painter by the same name, thus far, no additional biographical information has been located to properly place him in a more detailed historical context.

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Big Bang Theory, 1566: The Nerd with the Golden Nose

tycho braheMaybe Cousin Manderup was “in his spot”. Maybe it was Fermat’s Next-to-Last Theorem proving that 2 + 2 = 5 ? Fact is that a squabble among freshman nerds at the theology professor’s house ended in an ugly injury that made one of the geeks almost as famous for his rhinoplasty as for his scientific discoveries… Continue reading

Location, Location, Location: What to keep in mind when choosing a place to fight

Jéann Daniel L’Ange was fencing master at the Electoral Palatinate court and at the University of Heidelberg. His Deutliche Erlärung der Adelichen und Ritterlichen freyen Fecht-Kunst of 1664 is an independently mastered take on the “Italian manner” of rapier fencing, containing many practical hints and recommendations from L’Ange’s own experiences.

Such as what to keep in mind when selecting a place to fight your opponent… 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

Rapier and Buckler; Dutch, 1630

The Glory that was Rome




The Glory that was Rome








Once again, no documentary value…

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Fechtschule; Germany, 1623

Fechtschule der Klopffechter

Fechtschule der Klopffechter

Fechtschule der Klopffechter, 1623


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Georg Gumpelzhaimer: Gymnasma de exercitiis academicorum; German, 1650


Students at German universities were predominantly young noblemen. As such, they brought aristocratic leisure activities with them to academia.

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