Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Monday, June 25, 2012

By The Sword

The Darwin travels have finally ended, but it's a busy catch-up day here at the office, so here's a quick set of lunch-time links for your enjoyment. John Clements of the Association for Renaissance Martial Arts has a piece at io9 entitled, "Swordfighting: Not What You Think It Is". The article style is a little blustery, but it is nonetheless interesting. You can also drop by the ARMA website and check out their web documentary on historical sword fighting techniques and check out some of their training and practice video clips.

Being of the geeky brand of athlete, my high school sport was fencing, and although I enjoyed it a lot, I would certainly agree with Clement's contention that modern competitive fencing (in part due to the arbitrary nature of some of its rules) is very little like real sword combat, even dueling combat.


Baron Korf said...

Check out "Reclaiming the Blade" on Netflix (if you have the service). If you like this stuff, it will be worth your time.

Tony said...

I studied Classical Italian fencing for a while (foil, not epee). I learned that the modern electronic scoring techniques have caused the sportsmen (not "combatants") to concencrate more on hitting their opponent than not being hit.

Classical Italian fencing concentrates on never being hit. You're trained to concentrate on parrying your opponent's thrusts until the perfect time to attack.

Back in the old days, being stuck with a sword could be a death sentence due to infection getting in the wound. So if you both "scored" you could both die. Not much of a "win" (no matter who hit first).