Digging Up More Press about Swords

Old techology, current technology and maybe future technology – the swords of our past will figure prominently in our future.


Lots of Digging to Do


HARBURGER ZEITUNG (Germany) 07 November 11 Mit Schild, Schwert und Lanze (Carsten Weede)


With Shield, Sword and Lance: An archelogical dig is exploiting a Saxon burial site dating back to the 7th century and is exploring about 270 graves and 250 found weapons. Of interest to the scientists was that ‘grave goods’ were included in 7th and 8th C burials, but the practice apparently stopped in the 9th when the Franks took possession of the area. One tidbit included in the item but not explored is that one sax-armed Saxon warrior had ‘Feuerstahl’ (fire steel?) armour that was lighter in weight then that of the normal steel of the period.




All the Digging is Done.


ZME SCIENCE (Romania) 21 October 11 The Sword of Goujian – untarnished after 2700 years


I’ve added this non-Western related item as a foil to the one above for a specific purpose: to demonstrate that – at times – few and far between, we manage to unearth blades of significant age that have not been worn by climate, storage or burial effects. (Compare photos in the two items)




When you concentrate solely on winning – in lightsaber duels as in everything else – you sully your victory. It is better to lose than to win badly – Rekpa De


SPECTRUM (New York, New York) 10 October 11 How JediBot Got Its Sword Fighting Skills (Evan Ackerman)


You may remember that were were introduced to sword-fighting robots back in the spring? Well – they’re b-a-c-k.


Comment: I’ve thinking that this sort of intiative has potential to be a good thing in the indeterminate future. If robots (or your ‘Wii station’ come to think of it) can be programmed with basic and historical fencing ‘movements’, they could be used as ‘drill partners’ for those that can’t get to class. The exercise of any ‘traditional fighting art’ should be enhanced by modern technology such as ‘instructional action-video’ vice step-by-step photos and drawings; corrective video of yourself doing drills; PDFs copies – with translations and observations – of fight books; and ‘chat rooms’ for discussions with far-away peers and mentors. Just because sword technology has possibly stood-still, we as WMA students are not restricted to medieval education or research techniques. Future technology might at least be able to provide the Canadian WMA student with a chance to stay fit, supple, drilled and motivated during those long months of being ‘snowed in’ when our dog sleds can’t get to the salle.


Next month – sword-fighting, robot zombies!




Our Public Service Announcement …


UCL INSTITUTE OF ARCHAEOLOGY (London, UK) 06 September 11 Lecture: Sword and wielder in Early Anglo-Saxon Kent – 17 Jan 2012


The first seminar in the 2011-12 Institute of Archaeology/British Museum Medieval Seminar Series will be given by Sue Brunning.
The seminar entitled ‘Sword and wielder in Early Anglo-Saxon Kent (plus Sutton Hoo)’ will take place in Room 612 at the Institute of Archaeology (London, UK … darn it) on 17 January 2012 at 5.30pm and all are welcome!