Englishman Avoids Getting Whomped

Bill Mattocks

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I found this amusing; an English visitor to the Far East during the early 1800's fails to understand what certainly appears to be a demonstration of eastern martial arts, and believes that he can come to no harm. Funny - I suspect the man he puts down was simply too polite to kick his butt for him.

The Chinese As They Are

THE CHINESE AS THEY ARE;
THEIR MORAL AND SOCIAL CHARACTER, MANNERS, CUSTOMS, LANGUAGE, REMARKS ON THEIR ARTS AND SCIENCES, MEDICAL SKILL, EXTENT OF MISSIONARY ENTERPRISE, ETC.
BY G. TRADESCENT LAY, ESQ.
1843

Boxing seems to be considered as a part of a soldier's accomplishments, since if, by mischance, a man lost his weapons, he could have recourse to his fists. In combats upon the stage the competitors are represented as throwing away their swords, and prolonging the struggle with their hands. The foreground of one of their illustrations represents a couple as they appear after casting away their swords. The Chinese throw the body in every variety of attitude, but seem to know nothing about the mode of parrying a blow.

Instead of this, they endeavor to thrust their long nails into their adversary's eye, who is also not aware that a very slight stroke of the hand would ward off the mischief aimed at his visual organs. It is however, still more wonderful that they should be strangers to the practice of firmly clenching the fist; but they merely strike with the hand open, or with the fingers slightly bent. A great deal of parade is made in the way of prelude; the breast and the arms being bared, and presented in a manner truly characteristic of the nation.

Specimens of this preparatory display are now and then seen in common life, where the effect of a fierce volley of rounds is deemed insufficient; but it has never been my lot to see a blow struck that would give a European a moment's smart. In a little work I have on the art of fencing, a man is represented in the act of striking a heavy weight, suspended by a string, for the purpose of increasing muscular strength; and a practice similar to this was well known among our prize-fighters some years ago, though its seems that the Chinese had the start of us in this ingenious discovery.

If we could see anything like a graduated arc, we might fancy they had the principle of the ballistic pendulum, invented by Robins, to ascertain the force of balls when projected from the mouth of a cannon.

I was once threatened with a practical proof of this art near what is called the barrier, at Macao, because a companion of mine had given some offence to the keeper of the wall, by taking advantage of a dismantled part to get a peep at the other side. One of them, as champion of the rest, came up and made a vigorous display of the various positions into which he could throw his body, either for annoyance or defence. At every important shift, he uttered a thundering vociferation, to give greater effect to what he was doing, and ever and anon his companions shouted as they stood gazing from the wall, while the writer remained quietly waiting to see at what part of these evolutions it might be necessary to interpose as a matter of self-defence; but as this interposition did not appear to be called for, I retired, after giving this soldier and athlete ample time to try his hand at something more than show if he chose.
 

MA-Caver

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I found this amusing; an English visitor to the Far East during the early 1800's fails to understand what certainly appears to be a demonstration of eastern martial arts, and believes that he can come to no harm. Funny - I suspect the man he puts down was simply too polite to kick his butt for him.

The Chinese As They Are
This is funny and makes one wish the author's ego was enough to say "ah, I'll take this little bloke on" and have his *** handed to him. How little did he know. :lol:
 

myusername

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LOL! It looks like slagging off TMA's is nothing new then! It is a pity that the modern day youtube commentors who enjoy trash-talking TMA's aren't so eloquent!
 

kaizasosei

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The guy sounds like a regular tough guy to me. Elequent or whatever, i'm sure he could have found a decent challenge in china if he actually tried to look for trouble or teachings. Seems more like a case of the typical victorian attitude of 'field studies'(adopted by the rest of the western world), where the socalled civilized westerner would observe the socalled wild natives of some exotic land-usually without making the effort to actually understand the truly bigger picture. Such reports would later form the basis of opinions for the bulk of the masses back home, that did not have the chance to travel.


j
 

MA-Caver

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The guy sounds like a regular tough guy to me. Elequent or whatever, i'm sure he could have found a decent challenge in china if he actually tried to look for trouble or teachings. Seems more like a case of the typical victorian attitude of 'field studies'(adopted by the rest of the western world), where the socalled civilized westerner would observe the socalled wild natives of some exotic land-usually without making the effort to actually understand the truly bigger picture. Such reports would later form the basis of opinions for the bulk of the masses back home, that did not have the chance to travel.


j
Thusly Stereotyping is born.
 
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