Handy Sword Press

Youth and utility dominate this week’s modest offering.


My off-hand weapon is … my off-hand!


IO9 (New York, New York) 14 October 12  This remarkable prosthetic hand was made for a 16th-century knight (Lauren Davis)

“Don’t be swinging that in the castle keep … you’re going to poke someone’s eye out … or chop their hand off!”

16th century German Imperial Knight, mercenary and man-about-Landshut-town Götz von Berlichingen lost his right hand during a 1504 siege, but had at least three replacements rigged up to allow him to continue along his chosen career path.

“According to reports, the spring-operated fingers enabled him to grip a sword or a lance, …”


Sword with a Purpose!


NEWS & OBSERVER (Raleigh, N Carolina) 15 October 12  NC Man buried with horse, sword & dog to hunt devil (Josh Shaffer)

The grave of William Wise, 19th-century ‘local eccentric’ and aspiring devil-slayer apparently holds Mr Wise, his horse, his dog and his sword.

Why all the kit and company in close confines?

“After a century and a half, no one knows whether old man Wise managed to skewer Lucifer on the end of his sword”.

Comment: Though the style of Mr Wise’s blade is not indicated, I’m going to bet it was a saber of some sort!


Sword with Honor … Honoured


FREE LANCE-STAR (Fredericksburg, Virginia) 12 October 12  Marine’s sword lands in museum (Robyn Sidersky)

Col. Frank Goettge’s World War I ceremonial sword has been refurbished and is headed for the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Quantico after being sold by family members as part of an estate ‘odds and ends’ box.




DESERET NEWS (Salt Lake City, Utah) 12 October 12  In our opinion: Hugo Chavez' re-election means U.S. must pay attention

Celebratory sword.


‘Sergeant-Major – form square – prepare to receive cavalry!’

BIKYA MASR (Cairo, Egypt) October 12  Egypt acquits Camel Battle offenders

And we learn medieval sword guard positions during modern times … why?


The next two items, though not WMA/HEMA-specific, do address a concern that We’ve already waxed eloquent (and long) about … the need to engage youth to ensure that the practice of our own martial-art forms and traditions continues.  And besides, from time-to-time, it’s just prudent intelligence to know ‘what is going on on the other side of the hill’.


FORBES (New Delhi, India) 15 October 12  The Mystery of the Damascus Sword and India’s Materials Heritage (Gopi Katragadda)

“…with time, the smiths who knew about the technique died out without passing it on to their apprentices (since it no longer worked), so even if a similar source (of ore) was later found, the knowledge was no longer around to exploit it.”


PIONEER PRESS (New Delhi, India) 03 October 12  Scintillating swordplay that battles odds (Shashwati Srivastava)