No lecture today … just press. Enjoy the break while We catch our breath.
WESER KURIER (Bremen, Germany) 30 September 13 Mit dem Gummischwert aufs Pferd (Karsten Hollmann)
Arne Koets and the staff of the Prince’s Riding School of Bückeburg are instructing a small number of student in the chivalric art of historical sword combat from horseback. Mr Koets is perhaps better known as one of Europe’s premier jousters, though the 32 year-old admits that he’s does less jousting ‘work’ of late and more teaching and organising events for other riders.
For his classes Koets prefers to use Andalusian horses, favouring their nimbleness as being useful when ‘fencing’ from horseback.
Instruction is based on 15th C techniques and the program consists of both ‘dry’ (on foot) and mounted exercises, with students initially using ‘rubber swords’ – not so much to save wear and tear on their bodies as that of their ever-so-patient (and apparently forgiving) steeds. Students are taught to get ‘close in’ in order to effectively use their swords, and starter students are impressed with just how hard it is to manage your horse’s manoeuvring and still have effective sword technique. (Medieval multi-tasking perhaps?)
“This is high art!”
Imminent Sports Dynasty?
KAREL NEWS (St Petersburg, Russia) 10 September 13 Рыцари Карелии доказали, что они лучшие в России
The swordplay group “Tannenberg” from Kondopoga won a series of convincing victories at the “Sword of Russia 2013” national championships for historical fencing in Moscow, and thus qualify to represent that country in the ‘internationals’ against Ukraine on 05 October.
Of note, Galina Kohvakko was the Women’s Champion for Russia for the second time in a row. (Yes, Russia has women fighting in armoured combat – in competive leagues). And while competing for the Steel’s Leagues’ ‘regional level’ 2011 Commonwelth Cup, Ms Kohvakko made the following observation about the fighting techniques employed by her peers: “Russian women fight with a more defensive style, while the Ukranians use a more ‘manly’ technique – more cutting with little thought of self protection. The experience of both is very useful to me as a fighter.”.
Two minutes for … roughing?
ЮЖНОУРАЛЬСКАЯ ПАНОРАМА (Chelyabinsk, Russia) 20 September 13 Сегодня в Челябинске ролевики сойдутся на рыцарском турнире
The Chelyabinsk Regional Federation of historical fencing and reconstruction (a regional group, not local … not national … regional!) hosted their annual Medieval battle open tournament in sunny, hard-hitting Chelyabinsk. Medieval swordplay competitors from five cities gathered to challenge each other to full contact sword and shield and pole arm fights.
And they did it with the full financial and administrative support of the city’s cultural office, the regional Legislative Assembly and some other government organisations. In Chelyabinsk at least, medieval swordplay is treated much in the same way as we treat our semi-pro hockey teams!
And they get paid for doing this!!
SKY TYNE & WEAR (Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, UK) 14 September 13 Metal On Metal: Axes, Swords And Spears Help Get Underneath Bronze Age Society
Researchers at Newcastle University are recreating bronze age weapons and testing them to discover what they were really used for.
Trained volunteers are experimenting with a variety of ways of striking people with swords.
The weapons were cast by traditional bronze smith Neil Burridge using 12 percent tin-bronze, with sword handles, pommels and spear shafts made from oak and ash.
Buried in … the files.
STUTTGARTER NACHRICHTEN (Germany) 07 September 13 Wertvolles keltisches Schwert – Sensationsfund fristet Schattendasein (Annette Mohl)
An 80-cm (31 inch) long, Iron Age, Celtic sword blade that had been stolen from an archeological dig some110 years ago has been recovered by authorities from a rediscovered bunch of boxes in the city archives, and is in the process of being conserved so it can be appropriately displayed in a museum.
As decayed and mis-handled as it has been, officials believe that “”The sword could still present some surprises”.
The very latest for those of us in the Sarah Hay Fan Club.