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  1. #61

    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Okinawan Karate/ARMA WMA's
    Hi SCO,

    you said

    "Exactly. You guys are so negative. If you want to know sth. about the German school of the long sword, just read the English manuals and if you have a manual written in ancient German, in some old handwriting, it`s subject being the crystal clear art of ancient fencing, maybe Ringeck for example, just ask any guy who knows a bit of German and he will happily translate it for you. No sweat.
    (Translation is interpretation, by the way.)"


    Love the sarcasm. I find that can be very hard to convey via a post on the internet. :)

    I must agree with what I take to be the point of your post. While there are similarities between the English and the German schools, there are also a great deal of differences as well. You are correct that translation is interpretation, especially the farther back in time you go. I think that a modern German speaking person would find it extremly difficult if not nearly impossible to speak to a 14th century German speaking individual. Translation can be very difficult and time consuming, and the verasity of the translation depends in part upon the skills of both the transcriber and the translator. Therefore everything practiced today by WMA's from these manuals is basicly an interpretation of what we think they meant. However, I think there are an awful lot of really good interpretations out there, and they are getting better all the time. Off the top of my head, exceptions to this would include boxing, wrestling, savate, and modern fencing. These western arts never really died out, unlike some of the things written in the manuals.


    Brian Hunt
    ARMA member.

  2. #62

    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Brian I gotta say I am sorry, you are indeed a gentleman, and I must say that if perhaps I had met more ARMA guys like you things would have beend different. Also, alcohol and keyboarding doesnt always mix. Again, I do not dismiss Western Martial Arts in general, and like many FMA players have had exposure to it as well. It just appears that politics often comes to the fore more often than practice.

    Interesting note about point sparring in weapons competition. That is also a problem in the FMA world. Armored fighting (a recent invention) versus un-armored hard stick matches. Ive never seen a good armored fight in FMA. It has always encouraged un-realistic fighting, poor defence, and the loss of technique. As you said, because of the game aspect that armored fighting becomes (though there are those who consider WEKAF armor too light as bruise and blood still does sometimes occur) an elaborate game of tag. People who would have gone done, without armor, continue to fight, and then there are even worse habits, in which people lose their guarding abilities in favor of their armor (Ive seen guys whove realised that a shot to the head with a helmet doesnt hurt, and thereby proceed not to protect their head). Even hard stick fighting, creates problems, as in an corner, many can absorb 1 or 2 good stick hits, to close the gap and grapple. Such hits of course, if the weapons were blades would have ended the fight. I am definitely a believer in the less armor the better, but even with no armor (hard sticks) conceptualization is still key, as has been said a good hit with a stick can be survived, but a good hit with a blade, could end with a limb on the ground. Which becomes a major concern in FMA. How much is the reality of your training influenced by the safety of your training. There those who have tested it, but that (thankfully) has become more and more rare. Will FMA in 100 years be as tappy as kendo? WEKAF would seem to point that way. Or will it become a pure stick art, and lose the blade aspects, as would seem to be developing with the Dog Brothers (ground fighting works great with sticks, becomes harder with blades unless your opponent doesnt have one).

    As for the notion moving between guards, the same idea exists in FMA. There are "static" guard positions, from which technique is trainined. But then training in FMA is largely conceptual, vs proscribed. A training angle one, is a nice clean 45 degree downward strike bisecting the neck through the soldier, but in combat clean 45 degrees sometimes become 15 degree strikes, or straight horizontals. Rather, it is a conceptual device that allows training via quadrant. Ie. high rightside attacks, with a defence/counter that is capabable of dealing with non-formal angles. An, angle one block should work, on any strike coming in that quadrant despite the actual degree it comes in. Same notion in guards. They are not as important as conceptualizing the possibility from where one actually is, and ideally one does not fight from a "guarded position", but is rather always moving. Though, in stress, I always find myself taking the standard dequardas, shield side forward guard.

  3. #63
    Community Corrections Officer supporting member
    Matt W.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Spokane, WA
    Judo, TKD BB

    Your sarcasm may seem clever on the surface, but in reality it simply misses the point. Kuya claimed that the only way Clements had of beginning his study of Fencing manuals was by looking at the pictures. That is clearly not true. Your implication that my point was that it is a simple matter to sutdy those texts is a straw man.

    Wastrel, I haven't even seen the video. I was just responding to what seemed to be a general ignorance about WMA.

    Kuya, Nutriding??? Man, your the one with an axe to grind. You're nutriding on an anti-HACA/Clements crusade. I'm willing to let it drop, though, since it seems you've come to some accord.


  4. #64

    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    "I think that a modern German speaking person would find it extremly difficult if not nearly impossible to speak to a 14th century German speaking individual."

    Well Brian,
    (completely useless information to follow)
    there are still plenty of local dialects around these days (not just accents), which are difficult to impossible to understand for outsiders, native German or not (living nearby doesn`t always suffice either), and there are still some people who have real problems to talk anything else than their dialect (mainly some places in the south). In older times it was much worse, though the written standard (Hochdeutsch) spread much earlier than than the standard pronounciation (Deutsche Hochlautung), which is a distinctly northern accent (even though some stubborn southerners refuse to acknowledge it), as the spread and further evolution of the written standard is linked to Luther`s translation of the bible and therefore protestantism (roughly speaking, large parts of the south remained catholic). Most of the northern dialects are nearly extinct by now, due to the same reason, earlier adoption of the standard. I had a glance at a random page of the Ringeck transscript on the Freifechter-homepage and could somehow read the words, for the handwriting of the original I would have to do some learning first, a decent translation of such a text would be not be that easy.

    "Therefore everything practiced today by WMA's from these manuals is basicly an interpretation of what we think they meant."

    Yes, as long as this is being acknowledged I am happy. Healthy for the scene, too. Dogma leads to stasis.

    Well Matt,
    so what was your point?

    "First of all, there are several manuals IN ENGLISH. Second of all, it is really not that difficult to find someone who speaks German, Italian or Spanish here in the states. And third of all, how the hell do you know what languages Clements does or does not know anyway?"

    Now, let's not write `"Clements", let's invent a completly fictional character A, because it really doesn`t matter to me.
    Someone, call him B, says "A can`t read some of his sources."
    You say: "Big deal,
    1. he could have used other sources if he only wanted to (just he didn`t and he couldn`t on a subject he chose, unless I am wrong)
    2. he could have simply asked someone to translate the sources, that`s easy (just it isn`t easy, it's difficult and it doesn`t matter what he could have done, but what he did)
    3. B doesn`t know what languages A knows anyway (this may be true or not, its not quite an argument to refute B`s claim. You would better indicate which languages A knows and how you are sure of that).
    Unless you back it up, your contribution sounds like fan mail and not much else.
    Personally I don`t think we need to discuss what languages Clements speaks and how he got along with sources.

    But actually, my main intention was to mention that
    - translation work is commonly underrated and so are good translators
    - a translation is an interpretation, the result is based on the knowledge of the translator.
    Transcribing/translating/interpreting ancient manuals is by no means a trivial task. General knowledge of contempory language is not enough, knowledge of old handwritings combined with that isn`t enough either and the bigger the gap, the more room for interpretation.
    Just because that sounds trivial, doesn`t mean it is.
    Last edited by SCO; 1/20/2004 8:35pm at .

  5. #65

    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Phoenix, AZ
    Darn, hate to find a good thread only to enter WAY WAY late.

    Welcome to the boards, Arma (not that I'm some high muckity long time member to offer such, but eh, I can offer it anyway)

    Haven't had a chance to Look through the vid yet, so I'll offer opinion on that in a moment.

    But did have a few questions for Brian (as I haven't gotten a chance to peek at arma forums yet)

    #1: What all is the theory behind the whole "ABSOLUTELY no edge" rapier comment that I've seen from time to time with you folks and others. I'd think that some of the fundamental differences between fighting rapier or smallsword would scream that there's something of an edge (Not the most useful thing in the world, but discourages grabs and CAN draw cut under very limited circumstances)

    and #2: When are you guys going to have a school/group/etc in Phoenix? It's really sad being one of the better fighters and more knowledgable guys out here (REALLY sad REALLY REALLY sad, I'm not that good by any means).

  6. #66
    danno's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Shoalhaven, Australia
    so if a group, say, like the dog brothers were to get hold of some medieval weapons and find a relatively safe way to spar with them, does anyone think they would eventually come up with roughly the same techniques they used back in the day?

    i'm just trying to think of a respected group of weapon based martial artists who could to do it from the right perspective.

  7. #67
    Anna Kovacs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Las Vegas, NV
    Dancing the Spears
    Man this thread is old.

    Anyways, It's been done already. There are several groups that are working on reconstructing historical european armed martial arts. Of course, I might be a bit biased, but i think ARMA is one of the better ones due to our emphasis on contact sparring and putting our interpretations to the test against resisting opponents, wheras many other groups are content to simply read the text and come up with "interpretations" that are unworkable in sparring (or only workable with uberlight weapons that in no way approximate a real weapons handling)

    That being said,if you take a decent approximation of a weapon and start sparring with it, eventually you will hit upon multiple things that we have evidence of being used back in the day, but it's extremely helpful to have a referance to help guide your drilling and sparring so you can be surer of your interpretation.

    Quote Originally Posted by danno
    so if a group, say, like the dog brothers were to get hold of some medieval weapons and find a relatively safe way to spar with them, does anyone think they would eventually come up with roughly the same techniques they used back in the day?

    i'm just trying to think of a respected group of weapon based martial artists who could to do it from the right perspective.

  8. #68

    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    I didn't bother reading all the posts so pardon me if this has alread been covered.

    I have been studying Kali for about 20 years. After watching the video that started this thread I was... well.... um..... not impressed.

    2 words..... Dog Brothers.

    If these guys want realist dueling then they might want to go fight the Dog Brothers.

    and yes... it did look like a lot of random wild swings.

    Sorry... this is the nicest way I could put it.

  9. #69

    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Perth, Australia
    TKD, Kendo, Kenjutsu
    Kendo isn't tappy! My small experience with Kendo indicates that Kendoka hits damn hard O_o. Well maybe not comparable to the dog brothers, but they ARE using sticks, and us Kendoka are trying to simulate cutting remember, not whacking =D

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