Italian Sabre Usage...

Discussion in 'Historical European Swords and Sword Arts' started by geezer, Apr 15, 2009.

  1. geezer

    geezer Grandmaster

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    I belong to a group that does some loosely historical rapier fencing. I say loosely, because they use historical Italian and Spanish sources, but have a sort of "anything goes" or "if it works, use it" philosophy. Some members bring a modern sporting fencing background, others are martial artists, such as myself (I come from a Filipino Eskrima background) ... so we are an eclectic bunch to say the least. Now the instructor says he wants to bring in some historical sabre fencing. I'm keen on this since the Filipino blade work I've seen uses a lot of cut and slash work. At the same time, I'd like to research the "authentic" Western historical use of the sabre. Any suggestions on where to look? Are the works of Alfred Hutton a good start?
     
  2. lklawson

    lklawson Senior Master

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    Folks I trust say that Hutton's is a good system. I'm not sure how Italian it is though.

    There are a bunch of period fencing manuals available in French, Spanish, and (ims) Italian, many of them have been translated.

    Peace favor your sword,
    Kirk
     
  3. geezer

    geezer Grandmaster

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    OK now that we actually had our first lesson I can see that I had it wrong. We were using an Italian-style dueling saber (because they are available and pretty cheap) but the duels we conducted were set up like the late 19th-20th Century German "mensur" duels. When I was a kid, I remember when an older German-American neighbor of ours, a U.S. WWII vet, had a visit by his elderly cousin, an ex-Nazi officer who had attended the University of Heidelberg. I remember he had scars about the head and cheeks just like those Nazi types in all the old movies. Now I know why!
     
  4. kaizasosei

    kaizasosei Master Black Belt

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    Scars on the face are often a sign of belonging to a Schl├Ąger brotherhood or Burschenschaft. I know they have them in Austria and i take it Germany too.
    It is required to battle until you get slashed or even let yourself get slashed in the face. Often they are extremely nationalistic and sometimes even Nazi. They still exist and i've seen a few younger individuals with scars that seemed to fit the desciption.
    It must be a reoccuring theme in history or even an ancient tradition.

    As far as the sword arts go. I agree with the concept of using whatever works or is graceful and effective. Style will be established automatically as skill develops anyway.







    j
     
  5. lklawson

    lklawson Senior Master

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    Yeah, the "Schmiss" (ims).

    From what I can tell, in Germany preceeding WWII, it was nearly a requirement if you wanted to get anywhere in the German Military as a career.

    Peace favor your sword,
    Kirk
     

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