Digging Around with Sword Press

As our archery peers have been learning, concurrent with ourselves, ‘good’ culture such as movies and books can result in a renaissance of arts or interests too long ignored by our laptop culture.  The trick is to exploit (in the nicest possible way) and reinforce public participation in and adoption of our art forms and studies; to allow the art to grow – and to survive the inevitable bad press incident to follow.  

But, We also have two incentives to get out and dig deep into the garden … even if We don’t plant anything!  And for those of you in Europe, you might want to try the same in your neighbour’s garden while you’re at it! 


Good Money Results in Good Things

SFBAY (San Francisco Bay, California) 14 May 13  Swordplay Students Get The Point (Ken Heiman)

Steaphen Fick, founder of the Davenriche European Martial Arts School, or DEMAS, has the quote of the month for explaining why WMA/HEMA is in vogue right now:  “The thing I get asked all the time is whether there’s an interest in sword fighting. The answer is that there’s enough interest from Hollywood that they’ll spend money on making at least five movies a year that involve sword fighting of some type.”

DEMAS teaches rapier work and quarterstaff, and Fick himself is preparing for the Battle of the Nations.

DEMAS also teaches a zombie-survival combat course – but with a real-world twist … or as much of a real-world element as you can have when talking about zombies.

Too Much of a Good Thing?

HOUSTON CHRONICLE (Texas) 30 April 30 Swordplay becomes overkill in HGO's 'Il Trovatore' (Steven Brown)

Within the stage combat milieu; we have an interesting problem; how to determine when fight scenes stop supporting a story and actually become (or dominate) the story!

One journalist believes that Houston Grand Opera's "Il Trovatore" may be ‘dying by the sword’ to its’ omnipresence and heavy-handled symbolism … in effect, taking over the play.

“During the "Soldiers' Chorus," the men sing their lusty melody while executing a choreographed sword routine. If you imagine a high school band's flag corps, you won't be far off”.  High school flag team?  In a Verdi opera?  Sounds like somebody missed their measure!

A Fine Finnish

РОССИЙСКОЙ ГАЗЕТЫ (Moscow, Russia) 17 May 13  Эксперт: Найденный нижегородскими учеными меч принадлежал вождю племени (Виктор Девицын)

Researchers have uncovered a thousand-year old sword belonging to a ‘Volga Finn chief’ at a gravesite archeological dig.  The sword, still within the scabbard, is estimated to be 94% ‘complete’, with most of the silver highlighting still intact.

Belarus Rarity

ТУРИЗМ И ОТДЫХ (Belarus) 19 April 13  В Лидском музее хранится меч, датируемый серединой XV столетия (Ольга Матеша)

The Lidskaya museum is showing a piece rare within the country … a 14th C Passau-manufactured’ 14th C sword.


THE INQUIRER (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) 09 May 13  Museum of the Confederacy takes on Gettysburg (Steve Szkotak)

The exposition "Gettysburg: They walked through blood" features swords from three of the brigade commander’s involved in the infamous U.S. Civil War Pickett’s’ Charge.

THE HINDU (Chennai, India) May 13  Velu Thampi Dalawa’s sword of rebellion takes centre stage (G. Anand)

A sword carried in a rebellion 200 years ago is proving to be the major draw in an Indian museum.

LAS VEGAS SUN (Nevada) 09 May 13 ‘Tournament of Kings’ Teen Star

Somehow, sometimes, the gravitas and dignity of preparing for an armoured duel escapes us.

HUFFINGTON POST (Canada)  30 April 13  A Total Maniac's Guide To 18th Century Sword Fighting