Thursday, June 14, 2007

Another Chapter Down

Diverse reasons or introductions to bring thee the better unto the knowledge of they weapon.

As I may have mentioned before, I'm slowly transcribing The Schoole of the Noble and Worthy Science of Defence, a fencing manual written in 1617 by Joseph Swetnam. I managed to complete chapter six today, which is largely a treatise on why Swetnam has chosen what to include in the more technique-oriented portions of the manual, which will come later.

One point of note in this chapter is that knowing everything about fighting isn't necessary for most people. A sound knowledge of one weapon -- and the appropriate guards and attacks for it -- is sufficient for most people. He essentially paraphrases the notion that it's better to do one thing well than to do several things poorly.

I can agree with that sentiment, which is why I generally don't spend a great amount of time trying to learn the styles of other period fencing instructors like Fabris, Capo Ferro, Di Grassi, etc. I'd rather get this particular style down well than dabble in a broad assortment of techniques that may not even complement each other well. It's nice to know about them for when I face them on the field, but I'm not going to try to incorporate them into my own fighting unless they're obviously compatible.

No comments: