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Thread: MS I.33 Chivalry Bookshelf / Royal Armouries press release

  1. MS I.33 Chivalry Bookshelf / Royal Armouries press release

    Chivalry Bookshelf
    Publishers of New Works & Important Reprints

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    July 31, 2003
    Contact: Brian R. Price, Publisher
    866.268.1495 tel.

    CHIVALRY BOOKSHELF ANNOUNCES JOINT PUBLISHING PROJECT WITH THE BRITISH ROYAL ARMOURIES AT LEEDS

    “THE MEDIEVAL ART OF SWORDSMANSHIP: A Facsimile and Translation of the World’s Earliest Known Combat Treatise, Royal Armouries MS. I.33,”

    Trans. By Dr. Jeffrey Forgeng
    ISBN: 1-891448-38-2, $54.95 hardcover, available September 2003

    The Chivalry Bookshelf, publisher of works relating to Medieval History and Western Martial Arts, announced today a publishing partnership with the British Royal Armouries, based in Leeds, UK, in order to bring the earliest known book on fencing to print in a color facsimile edition.

    The manuscript, part of the Royal Armouries collection, is known as “Royal Armouries MS I.33.” It consists of 34 parchment leaves of superb figures engaged in German swordplay from the late 13th or early 14th century. The figures are beautifully rendered in watercolor, making it one of the most striking martial arts manuscripts ever created, as well as being the earliest known work on fencing. The illustrations are accompanied with Latin descriptions for each series of maneuvers in a series of contemporary hands. Interestingly, the figures depicted are not foot soldiers or knights, but what appears to be monks or secular clergy executing a surprisingly sophisticated combat system. Uniquely, a woman practicing the fencing moves is also featured in some of the plates.

    Designed primarily for the vibrant community of passionate enthusiasts reconstructing various system of European combat techniques, the facsimile edition will be produced in hardcover on quality art-stock paper, and will include a complete facing page transcription and translation by Dr. Jeffrey L. Forgeng of the Higgins Armory, Worchester MA, who has worked on this project for more than five years in order to bring the cryptic text to a larger audience. Dr. Forgeng’s abilities as a philologist and martial arts practitioner lend his translation unique value that will likely remain the definitive translation for many decades to come.
    Besides martial artists and reenactors, the book will also find a home on any medieval enthusiast’s shelf, especially those interested in military aspects, illuminated manuscripts or early books. This work is a treasure of color and action that has been convincingly conveyed by medieval artists and miraculously preserved to the present day. The figures have a realism and dynamic that is unusual for the period; one can almost see the motion between the plates.

    Alongside this project, the Chivalry Bookshelf will also release a companion interpretative volume by Paul Wagner and Stephen Hand, Medieval Sword and Shield: The combat system of Royal Armouries MS. I.33 (ISBN: 1-891448-43-9, $29.95). This work, to be published simultaneously in trade paper, will feature more than 200 photographs taking the practitioner through every aspect of the system’s elegant system.

    The Chivalry Bookshelf publishes new works and important reprints relating to medieval history and Western martial arts. Established in 1996, the press has published twelve works, including the prestigious reprint of the Bengt Thordeman’s 1929 Armour from the Battle of Wisby, Dr. Steven Muhlberger’s Jousts and Tournaments: Charnay and the Rules for Chivalric Sport in Fourteenth Century France, and most recently, the full-color facsimile of another 15th century martial arts treatise, Arte Gladiatoria: 15th Century Swordsmanship of Master Filippo Vadi, translated by Luca Porzio and Gregory Mele. Their books are available to resellers (on account), direct through their website, http://www.chivalrybookshelf.com or through major wholesaler’s including Baker & Taylor and Ingram. The press has already released 4 new books in 2003 and will be releasing eight more similar books by the end of the year.

    The Royal Armouries, Leeds, holds one of the world’s most prestigious collections of arms and armour. Begun as a military holding in the Tower of London during the 1640s, today the collection consists of more than 1,650 drawings, paintings and photographs; 8,000 pieces of armour from Europe and around the world; 600 pieces of equestrian equipment; 4,200 staff weapons; 7,500 swords; 6,300 daggers; 12,000 firearms; 900 pieces of artillery and 50 pieces of torture equipment. The Royal Armouries publishes the prestigious annual, Royal Armouries Yearbook, now in its 6th year, featuring articles on all aspects of arms and armour. The Trustees of the Museum are charged with the promotion in the UK and worldwide the knowledge and appreciation of arms and armour by leveraging the collection to provide education and enjoyment through its museums, hands-on activities, demonstrations and research. http://www.armouries.org.uk

    The book will be available through the Chivalry Bookshelf direct, through its US Distributor (Midpoint Trade Books) and through their new European Distributor, Greenhill Books. through the Royal Armouries at Leeds in late September or early October 2003. A special preorder discount is available through the Chivalry Bookshelf commerce site for advance purchases of both books.





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    Brian R. Price
    Schola / Company of Saint George
    http://www.scholasaintgeorge.org
    Chivalry Boookshelf
    http://www.chivalrybookshelf.com

  2. #2

    Excellent

    I know that I for one, as well as the Rocky Mountain Historical Combat Guild, are very much looking forward to both these titles.
    Thanks to all involved, keep the great work.

    James
    "Farewell sweet friend, I was a thousand times more evil than thou. "
    -------------Stormbringer--------------
    Rocky Mountain Historical Combat Guild

  3. #3
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    Excellent

    Looking forward to another good book from Chivalry...as if I didn't have enough to read already

    Todd Sullivan

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    Re: Excellent

    Originally posted by Todd Sullivan
    Looking forward to another good book from Chivalry...as if I didn't have enough to read already

    Todd Sullivan
    Awesome! I have just the spot on my shelf for that... right next to the thoroughly dirty / frayed / well-loved Secrets book...
    -David Peck

    =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

    Note to self - Explore relationship between sleep and relieving exhaustion.

    Scholar - Chicago Swordplay Guild
    Keeper of sword-related texts / Archivist for the Sword Forum
    Purpleheart Armoury, Revival Clothing, Chivalry Bookshelf, Arms & Armor

  5. #5
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    Picture on the Front cover.

    Hi Brian,

    I was just wondering about the picture on the front cover of the interpretation, with Mr Hand and Mr Wagner.

    I have been looking through all the I33 manual, and I cannot find a picture of an under grabbed grappeling position. In fact I cannot find an under grabbed grappeling position in any manual that I have access to. (Fiore, Talhoffer, Codex, Ringeck. to mention some)

    My question is: Is this mentioned in the text or alluded to in the text, or is it an interpretation of a picture, if so which one?

    All the best


    Col
    Founder and Head Instructor at Arts of Mars Historical European Martial Arts Academy.
    Author: Fiore Dei Liberi 1409: Wrestling and Dagger (in two languages)
    DVD "Medieval Combat Italian Longsword - Student Guide 1" from the Treatises of Fiore dei Liberi 1409
    HEMAC member.
    Organiser International Open Championship 2008, 2010
    www.ArtsofMarsBooks.com
    www.ArtsofMars.com
    www.wwc.ArtsofMars.com


    There is no need of further discussion, when the Sword has the last word.

  6. #6

    Re: Picture on the Front cover.

    Originally posted by Colin Richards
    Hi Brian,

    I was just wondering about the picture on the front cover of the interpretation, with Mr Hand and Mr Wagner.

    I have been looking through all the I33 manual, and I cannot find a picture of an under grabbed grappeling position. In fact I cannot find an under grabbed grappeling position in any manual that I have access to. (Fiore, Talhoffer, Codex, Ringeck. to mention some)

    My question is: Is this mentioned in the text or alluded to in the text, or is it an interpretation of a picture, if so which one?

    All the best


    Col
    Hi Colin,

    I don't know about I.33, as I haven't had the chance to work with it yet, but there is a lock going under the (single) arm (although from experience it can also lock both arms on a longsword just as well) illustrated in folio 18v of Vadi (originating in Fiore I assume?). The translation reads:

    "I have locked you on the reverse side
    With a sword blow you will be thrown to the ground"

    -Porzio and Mele pg105.

    In my reading of Vadi, the swordsman uses his left arm to lock his opponents right arm (elbow under the opponent's elbow, which could be hyper extended quite easily from this position), leaving his own right sword arm free to complete the technique (incidentally, in both the picture above and in Vadi, the sword is being held point online as if ready to finish with a thrust, despite Vadi's text). The key difference here is that Vadi's lock is executed so that the locked arm and sword is kept on the outside, while the photo above has the sword and buckler arms locked on the inside.

    My gut instinct tells me that I would prefer locking my opponent's arms on my outside, as Vadi does, but since I don't know the context of the technique illustrated, I think it would be presumptuous for me to make any assumptions on it.

    As to the lack of it in the pictures of I.33, what of the text? Hopefully Stephen or Paul will be along to make this clearer.

    Cheers,

  7. #7

    Clarification

    [i]
    My gut instinct tells me that I would prefer locking my opponent's arms on my outside, as Vadi does, but since I don't know the context of the technique illustrated, I think it would be presumptuous for me to make any assumptions on it.

    [/B]
    I should add, the reason I prefer to lock the arms on the outside, is because it locks them securely underneath my armpit, making it virtually impossible for the opponent to get his arms free, as well as making it possible to hyper extend the elbow joints and therefore manipulate the opponent into whatever position I want them.

  8. #8
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    Re: Picture on the Front cover.

    Dear Colin and William,

    Thankyou for allowing me the oportunity to discuss our book.

    The image on the front cover is not explicitly described in I.33. It is however, implied. It arises from the ward of Underarm being countered by the Crutch. Each ward in I.33 except longpoint is the departure point for one of the major blows. With Underarm this is obviously the Unterhau from the left. There are many instances in I.33 where the obvious action is not discussed. In order to work out why, we did them and explored possible responses within the existing system. In all instances in which the obvious attack is not mentioned, it is because it is, for all intents and purposes, suicide. If an unterhau is made from the left to an adversary in the Crutch, then the defender is underbound, that is his sword is under the opponent's. Therefore he cannot safely execute the shieldknock, the bind with the shield, which is the most usual follow on from a bind with the sword, as his sword would be trapped under the attacker's in the shieldknock. Our response therefore was to mirror that shown on plate 8 where the Priest overbinds the Scholar on the right, that is he engages the scholar's sword on the inside, pressing it down. Here, the Scholar responds by making an almost identical grapple to that shown on the front cover, except that, because the Priest's sword is on the inside of his blade, rather than the outside, the Priest's sword and shield are trapped under the left arm, as shown in the Vadi plate referred to by William. This grapple with the left arm under the arms of the adversary is shown at plate 8 and plate 24 of I.33. That technique and indeed every other technique illustrated or written about in I.33 is photographed in the book. The grapple shown on the front cover is very effective. On account of its effectiveness, no one does the direct attack from Underarm against an opponent countering in the Crutch.

    It is our contention that it would be impossible to explain the I.33 system to a modern audience by merely describing the plays illustrated and discussed in the treatise. There is too much assumed knowledge. One of the most central features of the system is the way the buckler is held close to the arm, yet this is never explained. So we experimented with not covering the sword arm. It immediately became apparent that if you don't cover the sword arm as shown in I.33, anyone who's vaguely competent can countercut your arm as you attack. Therefore we have included a section on attacking and defending the arm. If people are trained to attack the exposed arm, then the arm must be covered in attack as is shown in I.33. Attacking and defending the arm is therefore a vital part of I.33, although it is assumed knowledge. The same goes for the numerous cases of "why don't I do this really obvious thing". "Why don't you attack directly into the Crutch?" "Why don't you cut at the legs in a Tread Through?" These are all questions which we have asked ourselves or our students have asked us, so we answer those questions. It has been our intention to present a complete system that people can easily learn. We commence with footwork, move on to basic principles and then use those basic principles to examine the plays from each of the wards. We are not interpreting I.33 play by play. We are presenting the entire system, including every play illustrated and described, and additional plays that we feel are assumed knowledge and are necessary to understand the system. Judging from the reaction of the students at classes where I have presented I.33 in this fashion, I would say that this arrangement is extremely effective.

    So why does the cover have an image from one of those speculative sections? Because Brian Price chose it as being dramatic and effective. I agree with him.

    Cheers
    Stephen
    Last edited by Stephen Hand; 08-10-2003 at 08:49 AM.

  9. #9
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    Re: Re: Picture on the Front cover.

    Hello Mr Hand

    <The image on the front cover is not explicitly described in I.33. It is however, implied.>
    Actually it is not is it.
    All of the grapples in 133 show clearly the grappler taking the arms of the grappled under his arm pit.
    Where is your move implied?

    <In all instances in which the obvious attack is not mentioned, it is because it is, for all intents and purposes,suicide.>
    Then why are you using an unmentioned technique, but I must agee it probably would be suicide.

    <If an unterhau is made from the left to an adversary in the Crutch, then the defender is underbound, that is his sword is under the opponent's. Therefore he cannot safely execute the shieldknock, the bind with the shield.>

    Would not a stab knock or a bound thrust as shown not suffice?
    If you note the head is covered here not the hand which is cool.


    <This grapple with the left arm under the arms of the adversary is shown at plate 8 and plate 24 of I.33.>
    But as an over arm grapple, not an underarm in both cases.


    <That technique and indeed every other technique illustrated or written about in I.33 is photographed in the book. The grapple shown on the front cover is very effective. On account of its effectiveness, no one does the direct attack from Underarm against an opponent countering in the Crutch. >

    No and thats cos his hands are high and covered, which is why an over bind is suggested, I'd like to see how you are using crook in such a way to leave you open to this grapple.

    <It is our contention that it would be impossible to explain the I.33 system to a modern audience by merely describing the plays illustrated and discussed in the treatise.>
    Oh come on credit them with intelligence, I'm sure they can work it out, after all we have haven't we.

    <There is too much assumed knowledge. One of the most central features of the system is the way the buckler is held close to the arm, yet this is never explained. So we experimented with not covering the buckler arm. It immediately became apparent that if you don't cover the buckler arm as shown in I.33, anyone who's vaguely competent can countercut your arm as you attack.>

    I assume you mean cover the sword arm, that's a good observation though can see howv that would slip past a lot o folk

    <Therefore we have included a section on attacking and defending the arm. If people are trained to attack the exposed arm, then the arm must be covered in attack as is shown in I.33. Attacking and defending the arm is therefore a vital part of I.33, although it is assumed knowledge.>

    I agree with you here.

    < The same goes for the numerous cases of "why don't I do this really obvious thing". "Why don't you attack directly into the Crutch?" "Why don't you cut at the legs in a Tread Through?">
    Does this Justify the above technique, it is not obvious it is not implied.
    If you practise your lignitzer it makes very clear the reasoning behind leg cuts and why they work at times and are stupid at others, but sorry, bit off topic.

    Take care.
    LONDON LONGSWORD ACADEMY
    For practice is better than art,
    hit him
    your exercise does well without the art,
    keep hitting,
    but the art is not much good without the exercise
    do not miss.


    author of the DVDs:
    Obsesseo
    Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33) "Intention".
    & Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33)Part II "Timing and Distance".

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    Re: Re: Re: Picture on the Front cover.

    Dear David,

    Let me explain. In over 500 photos in our book there are perhaps 50 that show actions not explicitly described in I.33. In all cases these are moves that we have found necessary, such as the countercuts to the arm and responses to attacks not shown, but which people nevertheless make.

    The picture on the cover is one of the latter. In practically every combination of a ward and a counterward the obvious attack is not shown. The Unterhau from the left is not shown from Underarm, the Zornhau is not shown from Right Shoulder etc. Why is this the case? We believe it is because the counterwards make the direct attack foolish. Fine, but if you don't know what to do against a foolish attack, then maybe it isn't so foolish, is it? So we have experimented with making the direct attacks from the wards against each counter and responding using the basic principles. The plays that we have come up with and included in the book are speculative, but they obey the principles of the system and they work consistently in bouting. It is our feeling that if we hadn't presented responses to the most obvious attacks then we would not be presenting a complete system and we would not have created as good a product.

    Now, if you adopt the Crutch (or maybe we should use the original spelling Krucke as we have different translations), and you are attacked with an Unterhau from your right then it is simple to parry the cut. From the parry you have few options. You are underbound and hence will be at a disadvantage in any shieldknock. Your arm is not in a position to grapple over the arms of the attacker, as you do when the attacking sword is on the other side of your sword (as seen at plate 8) but is in a very good position to grapple under the attacker's arms (David it is the defender in Crutch who is making the grapple, not, as I think you assumed the attacker from Underarm). The attack is implied, because it is what the Priest in Underarm is charged to do. The grapple is implied, because that's what you do when the sword is on the other side of your blade, and it's pretty much the only good option except for a direct buckler strike to the head or right elbow from the parry. We freely admit this is speculative, but have found it highly effective. I.33 does not tell you what to do in the Crutch against the direct attack from Underarm. We do, because otherwise there would be an obvious gap in the system. Is our speculation open to question. You bet. If you don't like it, come up with a better option, but if you can't, then you will be vulnerable to a shield knock from the bind that results when you parry the direct cut from Underarm.

    When our publishers chose that photo for the front cover it didn't occur to me that it would be controversial. If it's going to create this much fuss then I'll get it replaced with a picture of a shieldknock. After all they're illustrated about 20 times in I.33 and at least twice as often in our book, whereas there's one picture of a grapple from underneath the arms.

    And yes, I did mean sword arm. Thanks, I will edit accordingly.

    Cheers
    Stephen

  11. #11

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Picture on the Front cover.

    Originally posted by Stephen Hand

    When our publishers chose that photo for the front cover it didn't occur to me that it would be controversial. If it's going to create this much fuss then I'll get it replaced with a picture of a shieldknock.

    Oh heavens no! Its just the sort of thing that might encourage someone to pick up a copy of the book! "Hmm...I thought I knew everything in I.33, maybe I'd better check this out!"

    A little controversy can be a very good thing. Can't wait to see the finished product - I'd better dash off a letter to Santa right away!

    ash

    P.S. - I saw a bio on Paul Newman yesterday, and fellow actor Tom Bosley was describing how when they were both doing summer stock theatre, they would get together, drink beer and play.... "bump-belly" hmmmm.........

  12. #12
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    I can see Ash's point, but I would have thought a pic representative of the majority of the system was most appropriate - after all, not many punters are buying these books - they are mainly bought by people who know what I.33's images look like already. Just my humble opinion as a sword punter anyway.

    Matt

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    I’m going to pipe in here with an observation.

    The thing that makes i33 so special is that is a true *manual*. Unlike, say, Talhoffer, it’s not just a collection of techniques, it’s a systematic application of principles. The system, really, is in the Principles, not the mere techniques.

    What this means is that what’s illustrated in the MS is only a small portion of the possible applications of those principles, and a fairly advanced application at that. In order to really understand I33 (or any system for that matter) you have to strip it back to it’s bare essentials and figure out not just “what” it’s doing, but the “why” - especially “why doesn’t it do it some other way?”. The answer to the “why” is really what gives you the specifics of the “how” to go with the “what”. The difference between the Tobler and Lindholm/Svard Ringeck books, for example, is not with the “what”s, it’s in the “why”s, which radically effects the “how”s.

    IN the case of the cover shop, the context of the technique is in answering a “why” ie “why doesn’t Underarm attack straight into the Crook, overbind it, and tread-through?”, which would seem to be an obvious application of previously established principles - and, indeed, works if the Crook doesn’t know how to respond. The answer is really to do with timing, in that the Crook has time to respond by closing and parrying before the overbind can be completed (which, incidentally, we know by applying Silver’s principles). Whether you choose to finish by grappling over or under the buckler, a shield knock, hitting him in the head with the buckler, or kicking him in the knee doesn’t really matter - all these are possible responses. What’s important is illustrating the principle of timing and positioning to counter an obvious attack that I33 assumes no-one would be stupid enough to try, but we are.

    For me, the under-grapple is just the finish that seems quickest and sweetest from the resultant position, and perfectly consistent with how I33 moves and thinks. Plenty of other responses are possible too, and in fact there is another similar sequence where we end in a very similar position, but finish with a shield-knock, because in that particular case it seems like the easiest thing to do.

    Maybe I’ve been spoilt by Silver, but I expect my fencing systems to work just like the manuals say they should, even if I’m a bit sloppy in the execution. If the “what” doesn’t work, I therefore assume I’m making a mistake & have made an unfounded assumption about the “how”, and keep applying the principles until I figure out the “why”. At Stoccata we’re - er - *blessed* (cough cough) with a hard-fighting and skeptical mob, and if something’s not working as advertised, they let you know. The failed interpretations, however, are very useful in illustrating “why” a technique is done the way it is, and not any other way.

    I have to say every historical fencing system I’ve looked at has been far more clever and, in many cases, complex that it first appeared. I33 is by far the most advanced I’ve found, and if there’s one thing I’m really proud of in the upcoming book, it’s that by looking at all the “whys” and “what ifs” and failed interpretations, the subtlety and tremendous sophistication of medieval fencing is obvious in a way I don’t think it ever has been before.

    Paul

  14. #14
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    Re: Re: Re: Re: Picture on the Front cover.

    Hello Mr Hand,
    <Let me explain. In over 500 photos in our book there are perhaps 50 that show actions not explicitly described in I.33. In all cases these are moves that we have found necessary, such as the countercuts to the arm and responses to attacks not shown, but which people nevertheless make.>

    Cuts to the arms are shown, all langort positions are the finishing points of attacks, so you'd have thought they are actually showing attacks, or at least the positions resulting from them.

    <The picture on the cover is one of the latter. In practically every combination of a ward and a counterward the obvious attack is not shown. The Unterhau from the left is not shown from Underarm,>

    Is it not? what does he strike against crook then. and from where, crook counters underarm, underarm can counter by striking into a like counter, it rises up from low on the left, that makes it an unterhau,(if you want to use it as a strike).

    <the Zornhau is not shown from Right Shoulder etc.>

    Etc what, the bind that results from the striking of an oberhau is, the position it starts from is. Barring dotted lines marking trajectory it's pretty well there.

    <Why is this the case? We believe it is because the counterwards make the direct attack foolish.
    Fine, but if you don't know what to do against a foolish attack, then maybe it isn't so foolish, is it? So we have experimented with making the direct attacks from the wards against each counter and responding using the basic principles.>

    It'd be pretty dull if you didn't wouldn't it.
    What basic principle applys to the under grab though, 133 says where it wants you to grapple and never once does it show an underarm grab, I'm sure if I want to use this justification I can get I33 to imply that leg cuts are good in places, as in my experience they are. But it doesn't does it


    <The plays that we have come up with and included in the book are speculative, but they obey the principles of the system and they work consistently in bouting. It is our feeling that if we hadn't presented responses to the most obvious attacks then we would not be presenting a complete system and we would not have created as good a product.>

    That is fine I don't doubt your wishes to turn out the most valid product you are able, that said 133 does give you those responces to the most obvious attacks. Why do you think it doesn't.


    <Now, if you adopt the Crutch (or maybe we should use the original spelling Krucke as we have different translations), and you are attacked with an Unterhau from your right then it is simple to parry the cut. From the parry you have few options. You are underbound and hence will be at a disadvantage
    in any shieldknock.>
    Not the best place to shield knock then is it, why not try stab knock, or bind over.

    <Your arm is not in a position to grapple over the arms of the attacker, as you do when the attacking sword is on the other side of your sword.>
    If you are close enough to go under, you should be close enough to go over, simple really or the principles of uberlaufen would work in reverse, would they not.


    <(as seen at plate 8) but is in a very good position to grapple under the attacker's arms (David it is the defender in Crutch who is making the grapple, not, as I think you assumed the attacker from Underarm).>
    Steve if you use the counters in the manual it would'nt matter would it?

    <The attack is implied, because it is what the Priest in Underarm is charged to do. The grapple is implied, because that's what you do when the sword is on the other side of your blade, and it's pretty much the only good option except for a direct buckler strike to the head or right elbow from the parry. We freely admit this is speculative, but have found it highly effective. I.33 does not tell you what to do in the Crutch against the direct attack from Underarm. We do, because otherwise there would be an obvious gap in the system. Is our speculation open to question. You bet. If you don't like it, come up with a better option, but if you can't, then you will be vulnerable to a shield knock from the bind that results when you parry the direct cut from Underarm.>

    So you made it up, that's ok, it's not implied though,
    I thought I might do what he said in the manual, and try and make those techniques work and not ones he doesn't imply.


    <When our publishers chose that photo for the front cover it didn't occur to me that it would be controversial. If it's going to create this much fuss then I'll get it replaced with a picture of a shieldknock. After all they're illustrated about 20 times in I.33 and at least twice as often in our book, whereas there's one picture of a grapple from underneath the arms.>

    Don't, nowt wrong with the picture it's just misleading about I33.

    <And yes, I did mean sword arm. Thanks, I will edit accordingly>.
    Cool thought you did, Cheers.
    Cheers
    Stephen [/B][/QUOTE]
    LONDON LONGSWORD ACADEMY
    For practice is better than art,
    hit him
    your exercise does well without the art,
    keep hitting,
    but the art is not much good without the exercise
    do not miss.


    author of the DVDs:
    Obsesseo
    Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33) "Intention".
    & Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33)Part II "Timing and Distance".

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    Hi Paul,

    <The thing that makes i33 so special is that is a true *manual*. Unlike, say, Talhoffer, it’s not just a collection of techniques, it’s a systematic application of principles. The system, really, is in the Principles, not the mere techniques..>

    That's the thing though how far do you stretch the "well this is what he meant".

    <What this means is that what’s illustrated in the MS is only a small portion of the possible applications of those principles, and a fairly advanced application at that.>

    I object your honour, when the author feels something was missed out he says so, why would he only show partial technique and principle. Is it posible he actually put in the things he felt worthwhile and not the ones he didn't.

    <In order to really understand I33 (or any system for that matter) you have to strip it back to it’s bare essentials and figure out not just “what” it’s doing, but the “why” - especially “why doesn’t it do it some other way?”. The answer to the “why” is really what gives you the specifics of the “how” to go with the “what”. The difference between the Tobler and Lindholm/Svard Ringeck books, for example, is not with the “what”s, it’s in the “why”s, which radically effects the “how”s.>

    Yup, that's fair.

    Running out of lunch break now, but I think you like it and you feel you can justify it.
    I think it's out of place and inconsistant with the manual. That said the important thing is you feel it works for you.
    Take care lads,
    D'Goat.
    LONDON LONGSWORD ACADEMY
    For practice is better than art,
    hit him
    your exercise does well without the art,
    keep hitting,
    but the art is not much good without the exercise
    do not miss.


    author of the DVDs:
    Obsesseo
    Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33) "Intention".
    & Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33)Part II "Timing and Distance".

  16. #16
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    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Picture on the Front cover.

    Originally posted by David Rawlings
    Cuts to the arms are shown
    Yes, but countercuts to the arm left exposed in the initial attack are not shown. They are not shown because I.33 at no point shows an initial attack with an exposed arm. There is an assumption that you know what happens if you attack with an exposed arm and therefore won't do it. In our book we have assumed an intelligent reader totally unfamiliar with I.33 and with the realities of medieval combat. Some of our readers will certainly understand the need to protect the extended target, but many others will not. If we didn't spell it out, then we would not be providing a complete fencing system.

    <The Unterhau from the left is not shown from Underarm <against the Crutch> >

    Is it not? what does he strike against crook then.
    Nothing. There are two offensive actions shown in I.33 from Underarm against the Crutch. Neither is a cut. On plate 8 an overbind is shown. On plate 11 an underbind is shown.

    <the Zornhau is not shown from Right Shoulder etc.>

    Etc what, the bind that results from the striking of an oberhau is, the position it starts from is. Barring dotted lines marking trajectory it's pretty well there.
    The bind shown in plate 17 is not an attack. If you examine the two illustrations on plate 17 you will see that no distance has been gained by the Priest. The only offensive actions show from Right Shoulder are the bind on plate 17 and the cut against the hands shown on plate 21.

    I don't doubt your wishes to turn out the most valid product you are able, that said 133 does give you those responces to the most obvious attacks. Why do you think it doesn't.
    I cannot speak for the author of I.33, but I believe the reason he didn't include the obvious attack from each ward (and hence responses to those attacks) is because they are foolish and easily defeated. This is all very well if you know why they are foolish and how to defeat them. I.33 doesn't tell you. Presumably it doesn't tell you because it was so obvious that no one made the direct attack into a formed counterward. We DO tell you why the attacks are foolish and how to defeat them, because we cannot assume that any modern person inherently knows what's sensible and what's not in a 700 year old fencing system. Again, if we didn't explore this area and provide responses to the obvious attacks then we would not be providing a complete fencing system.

    Not the best place to shield knock then is it, why not try stab knock, or bind over.

    If you are close enough to go under, you should be close enough to go over, simple really or the principles of uberlaufen would work in reverse, would they not.
    It isn't the best place to shield knock, which is precisely why I said you shouldn't do it. Whether or not you are in a position to make an action depends on more factors than simply distance. A grapple under the arms seems to work. A grapple over the arms doesn't in this situation. Does this mean that this is what the author of I.33 would have done? We don't know and we can't know. It works. Nothing else we tried seems to work. Since people do make the direct attacks from the wards against people lying in the counterwards, we would not be presenting a complete fencing system unless we presented responses to these direct attacks. Feel free to develop your own responses.

    Steve if you use the counters in the manual it would'nt matter would it?
    I'm sorry, we do use the "counters" in I.33. Every action explicitly illustrated or described in I.33 is in our book. This is a situation not covered in I.33. How could we use the "counter" in I.33, as the attack which we are making the response to (our response is a parry, not a counter) is not shown?

    So you made it up, that's ok, it's not implied though,
    I thought I might do what he said in the manual, and try and make those techniques work and not ones he doesn't imply.
    David, this is just rude. We didn't "make it up". Each ward in I.33 except Longpoint is charged for a specific blow or thrust. An Unterhau from the left is the natural attack which Underarm charges you to deliver. People make this attack. Hence both the natural attack and a response to that attack are implied from the ward/counterward combination of Underarm and Crutch. Because the position of the sword in the Crutch it is easily overbound (that is the sword binding it is over it, pressing it down), a shieldknock is not likely to work as a response and grappling is shown as an alternative response in one situation (plate 8). The specific grapple shown in plate 8 doesn't appear to work in this situation, but a similar grapple works very well indeed. This process cannot reasonably be described as "making it up".

    As I have said above, we teach and show in the book every single technique illustrated or discussed in the text of I.33. We also teach and include material that we find necessary to create a complete fencing system. This material, by definition is not in I.33, but without it the book and our teaching would be much weaker. We have gone through the mechanistic "do what's in the treatise" stage of interpretation. We are now in a stage of interpretation where we understand the principles of the treatise and we teach it in terms of principles, not of mechanical actions. In my Benicia and New York classes on I.33 in June I taught the principles of the system and then examined a series of plays using those principles. In both cases the students were able to state what principle was at work in the play and by the end of the class, use their knowledge of the principles to tell me what the end of the play was. This was immensely gratifying to both me and to the students. Not everything in our book is explicitly in I.33, but every addition is implicit in that it describes an obvious action not shown explicitly in the treatise, in a way that obeys the underlying principles of I.33.

    Cheers
    Stephen

  17. #17
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    Hi Dave,

    >>That's the thing though how far do you stretch the "well this is what he meant".

    I don't think it's a matter of saying "this is what he meant", it's just a matter of pointing out what he considers obvious, but we may not.

    Steve wrote something important about this:

    >>"We have gone through the mechanistic "do what's in the treatise" stage of interpretation. We are now in a stage of interpretation where we understand the principles of the treatise and we teach it in terms of principles, not of mechanical actions."

    This really sums it up. As I said before, the "what" and the "how" can be interpreted in many ways, but until you understand the "why" (and "why not") you won't be able to know if you've cracked it or not.

    >>when the author feels something was missed out he says so, why would he only show partial technique and principle. Is it posible he actually put in the things he felt worthwhile and not the ones he didn't.

    Yes, you're right, that's EXACTLY what he did! But what I'm saying is what the Priest thought worthwhile was pretty advanced stuff. There's an awful lot of things he just assumed you already knew - basics like which end to hold the sword, how to move in and out of distance - and "ordinary fencer" stuff like what happens if someone attacks without covering thier arm. We don't necessarily know this, 'cos we're not experienced - or even "ordinary" - 13th century sword and buckler men, so all this basic-level stuff has to be explained for dumb-heads like us.

    When interpreting I33 we *went* through all the "ordinary fencer" stuff, and made the obvious interpretations, and got walloped by "ordinary" fencers doing other systems, and had to keep refining and changing and learning until we understood both the principles at play, and all the assumed knowledge. Having done all that, it would be silly not to put it in the book to prevent others from making all the same mistakes we did - of which there were lots, believe me!

    Now Dave, I really don't want to appear rude or patronising or anything like that (and I've been trying to find a way of phrasing this so it sounds in the spirit in which it's intended!), but in following yours and Steves attempted discussions on I33 over the past year or so, I get the impression that a lot of what you're doing with I33 is exactly what I used to think too, but eventually discarded in favour of something better. When the book comes out, I really hope that someone like you, who has been working on I33, can go through it, find *exactly* what you do in it, and, in some cases, see why we don't think it's done that way anymore, and have moved on to a different interpretation. Even trying to explain how you get to the cover shot position is difficult, 'cos you're coming from somewhere a long way away from us, with different assumptions about what things mean, and it's very difficult to have a sensible converstaion without going back 68 steps (!). Wait til the book comes out, work through it, then let me know if you still don't see it!

    Paul
    Last edited by Paul Wagner; 08-12-2003 at 05:42 AM.

  18. #18
    I can't help but notice that pretty much all of the last few posts have come across as arrogant and patronising. Now I'm sure that they weren't meant that way but just in case.

    Cool it please.

    Different people have different interpretations of manuscripts and treatises, as long as we are clear that we are talking about our "interpretation" then there should be no problems.

    Take Care

    Oz
    Learn English Martial Arts

    "I have declaired in my prdoxes of defence of the false teachinge of the noble scyence of defence used here by the Italyon fencers."

    "The time of the foot is when you step forward to strike"

  19. #19
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    Paul, you raised a question earlier (or was it Stuart?) which maybe I didn't answer concisely enough - if someone doesn't cover the sword hand then why can't the opponent just lop it off. Well, in referrence to Manciolino my reply was this:
    You can cover the sword arm by covering the line of attack to your sword arm - the buckler does not need to actually be next to the sword arm. Hence in I.33 when a shield knock is performed and a cut delivered, that hand that performs that cut is covered by the very fact that you have stuck your buckler in a place that prevents a cut being given to your sword arm. Hence Manciolino seems to have the sword and buckler separated quite often, but he still covers the sword arm because of where he is sticking the buckler.. I think..

    Matt

  20. #20
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    "if someone doesn't cover the sword hand then why can't the opponent just lop it off. Well, in referrence to Manciolino my reply was this:
    You can cover the sword arm by covering the line of attack to your sword arm - the buckler does not need to actually be next to the sword arm."

    Yes Matt, you're dead right (again - commend your staff!), and something I've experienced first hand fighting Italian-style people (!). The ability to do so comes back, again, to shield size - the bigger the shield, the more of the "line" you can cover. Obviously, with a Big Shield, you can close entire fencing lines, but even a medium-sized, say 40-50cm, buckler can cover an awful lot, and make it very difficult for the I33-person. I33 is specifically about small i.e. 20-30cm bucklers, which have the advantage that you can grapple around arms with them (as seen on the cover shot!), but the disadvantage that they don't cover much, an thus if you're going to protect your forearm, it better be damn near your forearm (!). It's remarkable how small a gap is needed for a sword to slip through...

    "Hence in I.33 when a shield knock is performed and a cut delivered, that hand that performs that cut is covered by the very fact that you have stuck your buckler in a place that prevents a cut being given to your sword arm"

    On the other hand, what just "sticking out the buckler" does is present it as a target for your opponent to bind with *his* buckler. One of the definite links between I33 and Silver is this concept that by using your off-hand weapon, be it buckler or dagger, to "take out" your opponent's off-hand weapon, you can reduce the fight to a single-sword fight. In I33, there's a lot of advancing by binding extended bucklers, and I *suspect* the phenomenon where the I33 pictures show the same wards with buckler extended, then withdrawn, then extended, indicates that you don't just lie with your buckler out for the other chap to have a go at, you move it - it's certainly what I am doing now.

    This is actually why I asked about the buckler binds in Manciolino - it seems to be one of I33's reasons not just to stick the buckler in the other chaps face, and I can report that binding bucklers is a very effective means of countering the mere closure-of-line method.

    Paul

    Paul

  21. #21
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    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Picture on the Front cover.

    Hi Steve
    <Yes, but countercuts to the arm left exposed in the initial attack are not shown. They are not shown because I.33 at no point shows an initial attack with an exposed arm. There is an assumption that you know what happens if you attack with an exposed arm and therefore won't do it. In our book we have assumed an intelligent reader totally unfamiliar with I.33 and with the realities of medieval combat. Some of our readers will certainly understand the need to protect the extended target, but many others will not. If we didn't spell it out, then we would not be providing a complete fencing system.>

    Fair enough




    <Nothing. There are two offensive actions shown in I.33 from Underarm against the Crutch. Neither is a cut. On plate 8 an overbind is shown. On plate 11 an underbind is shown. >

    Ok steve how do you get to these positions,
    we may as well disagree on this one, I have an opinion about the manner and speed of achieving said binds it seems you don't share.



    <The bind shown in plate 17 is not an attack. If you examine the two illustrations on plate 17 you will see that no distance has been gained by the Priest. The only offensive actions show from Right Shoulder are the bind on plate 17 and the cut against the hands shown on plate 21. >

    Ah, maybe he is just using the time of the hand, maybe he's maintaining distance, shall we measure the swords and see if they'd hit if at extension.
    Why are you concentrating on the manual being right about everything now? Maybe I see more in it than you, which is ok now isn't it.



    <I cannot speak for the author of I.33, but I believe the reason he didn't include the obvious attack from each ward (and hence responses to those attacks) is because they are foolish and easily defeated. This is all very well if you know why they are foolish and how to defeat them. I.33 doesn't tell you. Presumably it doesn't tell you because it was so obvious that no one made the direct attack into a formed counterward. We DO tell you why the attacks are foolish and how to defeat them, because we cannot assume that any modern person inherently knows what's sensible and what's not in a 700 year old fencing system. Again, if we didn't explore this area and provide responses to the obvious attacks then we would not be providing a complete fencing system. >
    There you go then.


    <It isn't the best place to shield knock, which is precisely why I said you shouldn't do it. Whether or not you are in a position to make an action depends on more factors than simply distance. A grapple under the arms seems to work. A grapple over the arms doesn't in this situation. Does this mean that this is what the author of I.33 would have done? We don't know and we can't know. It works. Nothing else we tried seems to work. Since people do make the direct attacks from the wards against people lying in the counterwards, we would not be presenting a complete fencing system unless we presented responses to these direct attacks. Feel free to develop your own responses. >

    That's fine, you put in a technique not mentioned, which bearing in mind your previous insistance that things must "look" like 133, I felt a bit strange, your choice, don't mind, s'up to you.



    I'm sorry, we do use the "counters" in I.33. Every action explicitly illustrated or described in I.33 is in our book. This is a situation not covered in I.33.
    B)How could we use the "counter" in I.33, as the attack which we are making the response to (our response is a parry, not a counter) is not shown?
    Good then, I like to use the ones mentioned too, then we are agreed.
    And B, do you think there is a reason for that.



    <David, this is just rude. We didn't "make it up". Each ward in I.33 except Longpoint is charged for a specific blow or thrust. An Unterhau from the left is the natural attack which Underarm charges you to deliver. People make this attack. Hence both the natural attack and a response to that attack are implied from the ward/counterward combination of Underarm and Crutch. Because the position of the sword in the Crutch it is easily overbound (that is the sword binding it is over it, pressing it down), a shieldknock is not likely to work as a response and grappling is shown as an alternative response in one situation (plate 8). The specific grapple shown in plate 8 doesn't appear to work in this situation, but a similar grapple works very well indeed. This process cannot reasonably be described as "making it up". >

    Is it in the manual Steve, if not...


    <As I have said above, we teach and show in the book every single technique illustrated or discussed in the text of I.33. We also teach and include material that we find necessary to create a complete fencing system. This material, by definition is not in I.33, but without it the book and our teaching would be much weaker. We have gone through the mechanistic "do what's in the treatise" stage of interpretation. We are now in a stage of interpretation where we understand the principles of the treatise and we teach it in terms of principles, not of mechanical actions. In my Benicia and New York classes on I.33 in June I taught the principles of the system and then examined a series of plays using those principles. In both cases the students were able to state what principle was at work in the play and by the end of the class, use their knowledge of the principles to tell me what the end of the play was. This was immensely gratifying to both me and to the students. Not everything in our book is explicitly in I.33, but every addition is implicit in that it describes an obvious action not shown explicitly in the treatise, in a way that obeys the underlying principles of I.33.>

    Good, that's nice.
    Take care, D'Goat
    LONDON LONGSWORD ACADEMY
    For practice is better than art,
    hit him
    your exercise does well without the art,
    keep hitting,
    but the art is not much good without the exercise
    do not miss.


    author of the DVDs:
    Obsesseo
    Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33) "Intention".
    & Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33)Part II "Timing and Distance".

  22. #22
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    Hi paul,


    <I don't think it's a matter of saying "this is what he meant", it's just a matter of pointing out what he considers obvious, but we may not.>

    Assumptive.

    <Steve wrote something important about this:>
    I've shortened this cos me lunch is running out, I don't disagree with most of what was in that last bit, I don't doubt you've worked hard, or your ability to reason. Just that technique is not there is it, we or any one else would be told of by Steve at least for it, just accept it and critisise my bad form when I show it next


    <Yes, you're right, that's EXACTLY what he did! But what I'm saying is what the Priest thought worthwhile was pretty advanced stuff. There's an awful lot of things he just assumed you already knew - basics like which end to hold the sword, how to move in and out of distance - and "ordinary fencer" stuff like what happens if someone attacks without covering thier arm. We don't necessarily know this, 'cos we're not experienced - or even "ordinary" - 13th century sword and buckler men, so all this basic-level stuff has to be explained for dumb-heads like us.>

    If you like, I don't think you are dumb.

    <When interpreting I33 we *went* through all the "ordinary fencer" stuff, and made the obvious interpretations, and got walloped by "ordinary" fencers doing other systems, and had to keep refining and changing and learning until we understood both the principles at play, and all the assumed knowledge. Having done all that, it would be silly not to put it in the book to prevent others from making all the same mistakes we did - of which there were lots, believe me!>

    We did the first bit and walloped the fencers, Huzzah, principles ain't that hard are they?

    <Now Dave, I really don't want to appear rude or patronising or anything like that (and I've been trying to find a way of phrasing this so it sounds in the spirit in which it's intended!), but in following yours and Steves attempted discussions on I33 over the past year or so, I get the impression that a lot of what you're doing with I33 is exactly what I used to think too, but eventually discarded in favour of something better.>
    Hey I said something like that to you and Steve once.
    Think you are wrong there, but then I would and so would you.


    <When the book comes out, I really hope that someone like you, who has been working on I33, can go through it, find *exactly* what you do in it, and, in some cases, see why we don't think it's done that way anymore, >
    Bless you, show that you have moved on and then I might buy it, I don't see that improvement, maybe because you do things I regard foolish and dangerous (in a fencing sense, not personally).

    <and have moved on to a different interpretation. Even trying to explain how you get to the cover shot position is difficult, 'cos you're coming from somewhere a long way away from us, with different assumptions about what things mean, and it's very difficult to have a sensible converstaion without going back 68 steps (!). Wait til the book comes out, work through it, then let me know if you still don't see it!>
    We need to train together, it is the only way to thrash these things out.


    Take care,D'Goat
    LONDON LONGSWORD ACADEMY
    For practice is better than art,
    hit him
    your exercise does well without the art,
    keep hitting,
    but the art is not much good without the exercise
    do not miss.


    author of the DVDs:
    Obsesseo
    Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33) "Intention".
    & Lutegerus Sword and buckler(I.33)Part II "Timing and Distance".

  23. #23
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    Originally posted by Paul Wagner
    [BYes Matt, you're dead right (again - commend your staff!)[/B]
    Well in this heatwave they are doing most of the thinking, while the real Matt Easton takes a break, so that may account for it.

    the bigger the shield, the more of the "line" you can cover.
    And also the further it held away from you towards the opponent, as Schola member Craig informed me Di Grassi points out in his treatise. Though when the buckler arm remains extended then the buckler arm replaces the sword arm as the vulnerable target with a buckler, which is not such a problem the larger the shield/buckler is and the more of the left arm it protects.

    I33 is specifically about small i.e. 20-30cm bucklers
    Manciolino's first book is apparently also for the small buckler, as he calls it this, and later has a section on the larger rectangular buckler (Targa/Bocherro Larga) as a different section! Then again a different section for the Rotella, large round domed shield.


    "Hence in I.33 when a shield knock is performed and a cut delivered, that hand that performs that cut is covered by the very fact that you have stuck your buckler in a place that prevents a cut being given to your sword arm"

    indicates that you don't just lie with your buckler out for the other chap to have a go at, you move it - it's certainly what I am doing now.
    It is likely that the Bolognese school does this also, as Marozzo shows the buckler brought in close to the body a couple of times. Though I do not remember Manciolino commenting on this.

    This is actually why I asked about the buckler binds in Manciolino
    Well Lovino definitely does it:

    Manciolino does ward with the buckler and attack with the sword at the same time though - with the weapons separated. He also wards with them together as well though, like halbshilt, which is just guardia di testa to him, while langenort would be guardia di facia. And often he describes his cuts and thrusts as moving over or under or around the buckler arm, which generally seems to be extended. But he is not static with it - he describes moving the buckler out to defend on its own, as well as up-and-down movements etc.

    While I'm here and babbling about Manciolino (makes a difference to Fiore all the time doesn't it?), I found it very interesting that the two-sword style of Di Grassi goes as far back as Manciolino (who Steve Hick thinks published first in 1509). Manciolino says fighting with two swords is a beautiful art and should be practiced in the Salle, and that all moves of the single handed sword should be learnt with both hands! Hardcore!! I am crappy with my left hand!

    Matt

  24. #24
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    Originally posted by Matt Easton


    (SNIP)

    It is likely that the Bolognese school does this also, as Marozzo shows the buckler brought in close to the body a couple of times. Though I do not remember Manciolino commenting on this.



    Well Lovino definitely does it:
    Matt remind me to tell you about the "missing" or "other" Lovino



    Manciolino does ward with the buckler and attack with the sword at the same time though - with the weapons separated. He also wards with them together as well though, like halbshilt, which is just guardia di testa to him, while langenort would be guardia di facia. And often he describes his cuts and thrusts as moving over or under or around the buckler arm, which generally seems to be extended. But he is not static with it - he describes moving the buckler out to defend on its own, as well as up-and-down movements etc.

    While I'm here and babbling about Manciolino (makes a difference to Fiore all the time doesn't it?), I found it very interesting that the two-sword style of Di Grassi goes as far back as Manciolino (who Steve Hick thinks published first in 1509). Manciolino says fighting with two swords is a beautiful art and should be practiced in the Salle, and that all moves of the single handed sword should be learnt with both hands! Hardcore!! I am crappy with my left hand!

    Matt
    I found a mention to this and the missing diLucca actually being of this date. I can send you the quote if you wish Matt.

    Steve

  25. #25
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    Originally posted by Steve Hick
    Matt remind me to tell you about the "missing" or "other" Lovino
    Ok!

    I found a mention to this and the missing diLucca actually being of this date. I can send you the quote if you wish Matt.
    Yes please!

    Matt

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