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Rich Morris' Comics - YAFGC and The ComixBlog • View topic - A Book on swordmanship?

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 Post subject: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 6:12 am 
Enforcer
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I understand that a lot of the forum goers are somehow experts on historical re-enactment so i wanted to ask for recommendations: i need to learn about medieval swordmanship. I understand there is a lot of misinformation going around, so is there a good, perhaps a definitive book on how swords (or/and bows) were used and cared for?

Thank you in advance. I promise not to hack anyone based on the info you give me :D .

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 11:56 pm 
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Umm... could you be a bit more specific as to what area of the Medieval world you wanted to study?
For example, the Germanic sword styles are quite different from what the Turks were doing, and both are different from what the Scottish Highlanders were doing during that time...

Also, were you (or perhaps a character for your game?) thinking of using just one sword, or adding something else (shield, dagger, second sword, etc.)?

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:07 pm 
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A hero in a fantasy novel actually. I want to portray a guy with a greatsword, but i understand that in real life even the strongest of warriors could not swing a greatsword for long or even carry one around without a horse.
Battle scenes will not be the focal point but i cannot write a warrior without knowing some basic stuff and i would rather get them from a book than the internet.

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 8:50 pm 
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Basically, a zweihander was used almost exclusively for beating down pike hedges. People then figured out it was easier to stand back with archers or crossbowmen and shred the pikes that way.

Then gunpowder made the scene.

That's the story in a nutshell.

It might be best to start with Burton's Book of the Sword, if you haven't already.

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:37 am 
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I hadn't heard of it to be honest, but I am going to take a look at it now. What do i follow it up with?

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 4:14 pm 
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Hmm. Tricky. Many of my books are library discards, which means you not only need to find a English language book, but an older English language book.

I'll take a look, but don't hold your breath--I probably can't help beyond the Burton.

Well, except to point you towards the ARMA website, since last I checked they had a bibliography-type section.

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2013 3:54 pm 
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That will do, thanks :-) .

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:46 pm 
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For an introduction to swordfighting, I find video more approachable than the ancient texts.
So, here are of a Germanic school of 2-handed sword fighting.
Use google translate if necessary.

You also might want to consider for your character.

Viel SpaƟ :biggrin:

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2013 12:17 pm 
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That is way better than my books. The most recent of which, besides the Burton reprint (Dover), is 1946.

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 1:00 pm 
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Thank you guys. These are going to be really useful -as long as i do not get lost in the text instead of writing. You know, for "research".

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2013 1:10 pm 
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I suppose I should put some of the titles up, since I have no idea if any of these have been reprinted. It's been a long time since I read these, so i honestly don't remember how good or bad they were.

Oakeshott's Archaeology of Weapons remains pretty much the top of the heap. I know this one will be reprinted again and again. Heck, it might be an e-book.

Alfred Hutton has a few books on fencing and technique. I found them a bit dry, if memory serves.

There's also Ralph Payne-Gallwey's Book of the Crossbow, which I got for the siege engines.

And there's a couple books on castles by Viollet-le-Duc, which I really need to find a better translation on.

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2013 1:07 am 
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This is where I wander into a discussion WAY after everyone else has forgotten about it...

Morgana, there is a book called Medieval Combat: "A Fifteenth-Century Manual of Swprdfighting and Close-Quarter Combat."

It's mainly pictures, as it's a reprinting and translation of a 15th-century fighting manual by a man named Hans Talhoffer. It shows, among other things, how the long sword (commonly referred to as a "bastard sword" in gaming) is used in both hands.

It was translated and edited by Mark Rector and published by Greenhill Books. The ISBN is 1-85367-582-2. It doesn't talk about care of weapons, but it does cover a number of usage scenarios. (And, as an added bonus, you'll get to see where they got the design of the Elfin shields in The Lord of the Rings from.)

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 Post subject: Re: A Book on swordmanship?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2013 7:56 am 
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Thanks! I certainly haven't forgotten about it, and such suggestions are always welcome :-) .

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