Thursday, February 08, 2007

Halfsword ca. 1380-1390

Halfsword is a technique that involves holding the hilt of one’s sword in one hand while the other grasps the blade for a more effective thrust. It appears frequently in 15th c. combat manuals. It is difficult to say when the technique first appeared, but there is at least one example in a manuscript illumination ca. 1380-1390, fol. 209r of Livy, Histoire Romaine, KB 71 A 16 in the National Library of the Netherlands.(Koninklijke Bibliotheek: Shelfmark 71 A 16) This is the earliest unequivocal example that I have been able to identify

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