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Leofric
Monday, August 27th, 2007, 05:20 PM
http://ejmas.com/jwma/

Although it's not limited specifically to the martial arts of the Germanic peoples, this journal includes a wealth of information on the traditional fighting styles of our folk, including the German Fechtschulen, the English arts of longbow and quarterstaff use, Dutch wrestling, and Scandinavian glima.

For those who are interested in martial arts training, but don't feel like adopting the Oriental culture that so frequently gets crammed down the throat of Eastern martial arts practitioners, this journal is a welcome resource indeed.

Jäger
Monday, August 27th, 2007, 05:27 PM
I once made a post about Hans Talhoffer on Skadi, he was a swabian Fechtmeister [fight master] who wrote a book about combat training in the 15th century, there is a English translation of his book: Medieval Combat: A Fifteenth-Century Illustrated Manual of Swordfighting and Close-Quarter Combat (http://books.google.com/books?id=WL5EAAAACAAJ)

It was a very interesting read, although it consists mostly of plates that illustrate the fighting moves :D, here is the foreword which also addresses the problem of the misconceptions of Germanic martial arts:

Today the term ’martial arts’ is usually assumed to be synonymous with
’Asian fighting art’. This is no surprise since popular media are notorious for
misrepresenting medieval fighting. The medieval warrior’s craft is often reduced
to the myth that combatants merely crudely bludgeoned one another or
hacked and slashed savagely. Yet well established, highly sophisticated European
fighting systems existed. European ’masters of defence’ produced hundreds
of detailed, well-illustrated technical manuals on their fighting methods, and the
people of the Germanic states were especially prolific. Their manuals present to
us a portrait of highly developed and innovative European martial arts based
on sophisticated, systematic and effective skills. Among the best known of these
works is that of Hans Talhoffer. His influential treatise, first produced in 1443,
was reproduced many times throughout the century.
Here now is the first English-language edition of the definitive work of this
Fechtmeister (literally, ’fight master’). Talhoffer, probably a follower of the
Grand Fechtmeister Hans Liechtenauer, reveals an array of great-sword and twohanded
sword techniques, sword and buckler moves, dagger fighting, seizures
and disarms, grappling techniques, and the Austrian wrestling of Ou, a rare
medieval Jewish master of whom little is known. The illustrated plates also show
methods for judicial duels – official fights to end legal disputes – and fighting
with pole-weapons. Like many other medieval fighting texts, Talhoffer’s manual
covers fighting in full armour and without armour.
His manual reveals a range of both rudimentary and advanced techniques
and provides a firm foundation on which to begin exploration ofWestern martial
culture and the skills of medieval masters of defence. His manual covers fighting
with swords, shields, spears, staffs, pole-axes and daggers, as well as grappling,
throws, takedowns, holds and groundfighting skills. Like many other teachers of
his day, Talhoffer recognized that armed and unarmed fighting were only facets
of personal combat and he accordingly taught an integrated art. He was greatly
concerned with secrecy in both the teaching and learning of his skills, for if a
fighter’s style were known he could be vulnerable, and a master’s teaching was
his own to give out as he saw fit. Talhoffer’s manual was not widely distributed
until after his death, and even then it must have circulated very slowly among
groups of practitioners.
Whether your interest is academic, historical, theatrical or martial, Talhoffer’s
work offers today’s student of European martial culture a strong starting
point. While not a complete guide book on fighting from the period, it will encourage
the reader’s own practice and understanding of the brutal effectiveness
of European warriors as well as the artistry of their craft. Like many others,
for years now I have been interpreting and practising Talhoffer’s techniques.
I have studied his instructions and followed his advice with real weapons and
with safe sparring tools. It has been a long but fruitful process and while such
investigation remains ongoing and new insights continually appear, there is no
question of the martial value and legitimacy of his teachings.
It is exciting that we are currently seeing a ’renaissance’ in the study of
Western martial culture as research and study of historical European fighting
arts now undergoes something of a revival. Increasingly, enthusiasts of historical
fencing today are focusing on legitimate methods rather than mere competitive
games and role-playing pursuits and a much greater appreciation for the sophistication
and effectiveness of medieval and Renaissance fighting skills has
emerged. A new generation of serious practitioners and researchers is approaching
the subject not as escapist fantasy or entertainment, not just as theatrical
display, but as the study of a true martial art.
Earnest practice of the methods of medieval and Renaissance weaponry is increasing
in popularity today as students rediscover the many works of European
masters of defence. A renewed interest in and appreciation of the formidability
and complexity of both medieval and Renaissance arms and armour has evolved.
Most satisfying is the tremendous increase in the availability of translations of
the old fighting manuals, but even so we have only begun to scratch the surface
in the serious study of medieval fighting arts. Talhoffer’s Fechtbuch (’fight
book’) represents the tip of a very large iceberg.

John Clements
Author of Medieval Swordsmanship and
Director of the Historical Armed Combat Association
2000

Angelcynn Beorn
Monday, August 27th, 2007, 05:31 PM
I love it! :D

I've been interested in Western Martial Arts for years, but never really had the time or the money to train it myself. Apart from the journal there are a few other resources out there on the web.

http://www.aemma.org/

Which has it's own training regime based on medieval texts, in how to master swordsmanship and unarmed fighting.

http://www.geocities.com/cinaet/westernarts.html

Is a short list of links to various WMA manuals that have made it through the years. Mostly based on arts from the last 200 or 300 years.

Leofric
Monday, August 27th, 2007, 05:34 PM
I once made a post about Hans Talhoffer on Skadi, he was a swabian Fechtmeister [fight master] who wrote a book about combat training in the 15th century, there is a English translation of his book: Medieval Combat: A Fifteenth-Century Illustrated Manual of Swordfighting and Close-Quarter Combat (http://books.google.com/books?id=WL5EAAAACAAJ)

It was a very interesting read, although it consists mostly of plates that illustrate the fighting moves :D, here is the foreword which also addresses the problem of the misconceptions of Germanic martial arts:
<pulling said book off his bookshelf to read along>

Yes, that's an excellent book! I was afraid when I first saw it at Barnes & Noble that it would be just a silly watered down version of a wide variety of uncited but supposedly primary sources that vaguely related to medieval combat. Nothing could be further from the truth. It's a a genuine Fechtbuch, different from the original only in that it is translated into (typewritten) English and is available on cheaper folios and with cheaper binding than the original must have been. I got it for less than ten dollars.

SuuT
Monday, August 27th, 2007, 06:43 PM
For those who are interested in martial arts training, but don't feel like adopting the Oriental culture that so frequently gets crammed down the throat of Eastern martial arts practitioners...

This has always bothered me, too. The tattooing of various Asian characters upon the body, in particular.

An Aside: the Dutch have produced the world's finest kick-boxers for the last 20 (give or take) years; and those of European descent have dominated even Asian forms of Martial arts since the before advent of MMA.

Hersir
Wednesday, August 29th, 2007, 10:15 AM
I made a post about Glima here: http://forums.skadi.net/showthread.php?t=229

Angelcynn Beorn
Friday, August 31st, 2007, 03:26 PM
Although it's not strictly Germanic, if anyone is interested in WMA in general and in Pankration specifically, here's a great resource which describes what it's rules and techniques were.

http://historical-pankration.com/

theTasmanian
Tuesday, September 4th, 2007, 03:17 PM
that's an excellent site thanks for that!

i particularly like the section "Frank Docherty - A Brief History of the Quarterstaff "

as i have a stave at my front door...for the native seem to forget the meaning of property

SwordOfTheVistula
Wednesday, September 5th, 2007, 02:50 AM
Joachim Meyer's Fechtbuch:

http://www.thearma.org/pdf/JoachimMeyer.htm

Deutsch & English:

http://www.schielhau.org/Meyer.title.html

http://www.higginssword.org/guild/study/manuals/meyer/index.html

theTasmanian
Wednesday, September 5th, 2007, 03:51 AM
i had until reading that post SwordOfTheVistula heard of a Dussack!
as the falchon and cutlass is a term far more common to the type of sword

i also noticed the grapling in the training picture with the dussack


i looked up Dussack and i found this!....anyone have one?

http://www.myarmoury.com/review_dt5174.html



question: how blunt was the edge on a great sword? as in the training picture there seem to be a fair bit of holding the "blade"

Angelcynn Beorn
Sunday, September 9th, 2007, 01:20 PM
question: how blunt was the edge on a great sword? as in the training picture there seem to be a fair bit of holding the "blade"

Holding the blade was common in European martial arts in general. I'm not sure how blunt the blade would have been, but holding a sword by the blade seems to have reached it's height during the period plate armour, and declined noticably after that. So going out on a limb, i'd say the blade handling was made a lot easier due to the gauntlets that knights and soldiers of the time would have worn.