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  1. Tyrsmann is offline

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    Posted On:
    7/16/2010 5:08pm


     Style: Fiore

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    Histortical Marketing Gimmicks?

    Let try this again

    From what I've read there was a gimmick called "The Perfect Thrust". The Perfect Thrust (or Secret Thrust) was supposed to be a smallsword technique that was so effective that no could stop it. I've also read about another called the Universal Parry which was supposed to be able parry any thrust or cut. Both were marketing ploys by fencing teachers during the smallsword's hey day.

    I've gotten curious lately about what other gimmicks Historical Masters would used to attract students.

    Does anyone know of other gimmicks?

    Anyone locate mention of any in the various manuals available?
  2. Ningirsu is offline

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    Posted On:
    7/17/2010 6:26am

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Not even in the manuals, plenty of teachers today do that kind of thing.

    They'd have a background in balet or sport fencing or something like that, come across some HEMA manuals or other HEMA organizations and then go "oh hey, I'm of a direct line of masters! Look, I learned all of this HEMA stuff from my father and his father etc etc" and go around claiming original research and knowledge on whatever field they're teaching.

    As for manuals themselves doing this kind of thing, I honestly don't know much about manuals beyond the days of the rapier, but I do recall that Fiore de Liberi and Joachim Meyer (I think it was those two) getting challenged to the death multiple times to prove that they were actually masters. This harsh "environment" probably discouraged marketing ploys in the Renaissance, since if you were called out...you'd probably get killed if you weren't the real deal.

    Nonetheless Fiore and Meyer fought and won those duels, proving to the world that they knew what they were talking about.


    *ahem* but it seems I was correct in saying that your last attempt at this post was addressing this exact issue in simply a satirical format.
  3. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    7/17/2010 12:50pm

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    IIRC George Silver (author of "Paradoxes of Defence" back in the 1500s) equated these gimmicks to an old scam perpetrated by sailors. A landlubber would be sold a magic pill, actually the eyeball of a fish, and told that as long as they kept the "pill" in their mouth, they would not suffer from seasickness. Which was essentially true, as the "pill" would be ejected first when they threw up aboard ship.

    Otherwise, the botta secreta and the Universal Parry are the only specific examples I can think of, although presumably they took on different forms as advocated by different masters. One of the great Victorian-era revivalists of historical fencing, Egerton Castle, wrote a short story centered around a rapierist's quest to learn the "secret thrust" from an unscrupulous fencing master.
  4. Tyrsmann is offline

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    Posted On:
    7/17/2010 4:26pm


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    Quote Originally Posted by DdlR View Post
    Otherwise, One of the great Victorian-era revivalists of historical fencing, Egerton Castle, wrote a short story centered around a rapierist's quest to learn the "secret thrust" from an unscrupulous fencing master.
    This interests me.

    Would you know the name of this story? I'd interested in reading it.
  5. Tyrsmann is offline

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    Posted On:
    7/17/2010 4:29pm


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    Quote Originally Posted by Ningirsu View Post
    *ahem* but it seems I was correct in saying that your last attempt at this post was addressing this exact issue in simply a satirical format.
    Only partially in satirical format actually. I accidently copy'n'pasted half of what I had originally intended to post.
  6. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    7/17/2010 6:59pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tyrsmann View Post
    This interests me.

    Would you know the name of this story? I'd interested in reading it.
    It's called "The Great Todescan's Secret Thrust"; it's actually quite a fun story, like a kung fu revenge drama. Castle's Victorian mock-Elizabethan writing style takes some getting used to.

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