Re: [E_Rapier] Blades / Clancy Day
- Alright Willy its time to put this idea that Saviolo used short weapons to bed.
The indication of what length of weapons Saviolo used comes from the writings of George Silver, who unlike any of us was
actually a witness of these things. As I recall Silver challenged Saviolo to prove his skill in public. So they may
not have liked each other but they certainly knew each other.
Silver says on page 25 of the original, chapter 15. "The best length for perfect teaching of the true fight to be used
and continued in fence schools, to accord with the true statures of all men, are these. The blade to be a yard and an
inch for men of mean stature, and for men of tall statures, a yard and three or four inches, and no more"
so that it is a blade length between 37 and 40 inches in length. At the centre of Silver's complaints are the
deficiencies in the Italian Rapier, namely on the length of the weapons. Chapter 5 on page 9 is devoted enitrely to the
issue, it is entitled: "That the cause that many are so often slain, and many sore hurt in fight with long rapier is
not by reason of their dangerous thrusts, nor cunning of that Italianated fight, but in the length and unwieldiness
Thus, Italian Rapiers--of the type Saviolo--used had blades longer than 40". And the articles today certainly suggest
that weapons woth 42" blades have survived more frequently decade on either side of 1600.
Interpreting the vocabulary of Saviolo's work with the language of a shorter weapon might work. But this likely means
that you have not succeeded in reconstructing the vocabulary Saviolo used or intended. So if it is working better with
a shorter weapon than the type Saviolo used, it is that your interpretation of the vocabulary is historically wrong,
rather than Silver's ability to measure.
Methodology is tricky with things like this, a single shifted variable can throw the entire experiment out of wack.
With the complexity of bodies in motions with swords these can quickly lead to vast errors in reinterpretation. And to
be fair to people you teach I hope you make this discrpancy between historical fact and your interpretation known.
Without such is merely the propagation of poor historical method of which the world suffers from far too much already.
Lente autem non celer sum.
- I can for the time remaining that I am a student acquire--albeit sureptitiously any of the english manuals in pdf
> Another source but thelink evades my memory right now
> is William Wilsons stuff for Tattershall
> --- John Enzinas <jenzinas@...> wrote:
> > On 4/10/07, Kelly Wyatt <kgarlow@...>
> > wrote:
> > > The only thing that's clear is that I need to do
> > some reading on Silver and
> > > Saviolo...and then catch up with you again. Any
> > suggestions? Links? Here's
> > > what I've found on these two...I'd prefer to get
> > as pure copies as possible.
> > > I like to translate myself. I understand Silver's
> > manuals are already in
> > > English (well, antiquated but readable) however I
> > must ask if Saviolo's
> > > manuals were done in Italian or English? Are there
> > any other places you can
> > > suggest for me to look?
> > Saviolo was done in English. The transcriptions you
> > have found are the
> > most easily accessable but you can also find
> > reproductions of both.
> > contains Digrassi, Saviolo and Silver.
> > It's worth it if you want to read the originals.
> > Chivalry Bookshelf has an interpretation of Silver
> > done by Steven Hand
> > that includes a trascription. It's not bad, but read
> > the original
> > before you take Hand's word as gospel .
> > Likewise, a friend of mine is working on an
> > interpretation of Saviolo
> > for CB but I don't know when it is expected to be
> > finished. If you are
> > interested, I can put you in touch with him.
> > --j
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Lente autem non celer sum.