Sword Press, eh?

We lead with two Canadian items this time around, a first We think for this blog. 

HEMA/WMA ‘is’ alive and well in the ‘True North, strong and … well trained’.  Given the late start that Canada had with discovering a European martial arts heritage (no medieval nor renaissance-period sword fighting actually took place here in earnest), we’ve played ‘catch up’ in a respectable way, and now have an impressive line-up of salles across the country teaching any number of WMA/HEMA skills with interesting variations and interpretations.  There is no reason now after a little bit of research, that any Canadian cannot find a historical fencing opportunity … within a decent flying distance from your home.  (For our European friends, the Canadian east and west seacoasts are separated by about 7250 km… and it’s ‘only’ 3390 km from east coast Canada to Glasgow, UK)

Teaching 'terza' in TO

TORONTOIST (Toronto, Ontario) 01 August 13  Sporting Goods: Academy of European Medieval Martial Arts (Justin Li)

The Academy of European Medieval Martial Arts (AEMMA) has been teaching Fiori dei Liberi-inspired martial arts for 15 years now – and show no sign of slowing down given the interest in HEMA/WMA among Toronto youth.

With a time-tested curriculum supporting a well-defined rank structure, the intent of founders Brian McIlmoyle and David Cvet is to pass on renaissance fighting disciplines as they were originally taught and used.

One of the features of the AEMMA effort is that their interests and programs are mirrored within allied institutions in eastern Canada, which has the added benefit of providing a ‘salle-away-from-salle’ for their members as they travel.

New Kid on the Block.

NEW WESTMINSTER NEWS LEADER (British Columbia) 01 August 13  Historical martial arts bring new rewards (Mario Bartel)

Being but four years old, New Westminster’s Blood and Iron Martial Arts, has come back from an international competition with successes usually achieved by more established groups.  One gold medal was among the seven won in the Longsword 2013 HEMA competition.

Founder Lee Smith attributes initial interest in his salle to TV shows such as Game of Thrones and The Vikings, and his salle’s retention of 60 fighters resulting from their interest in fusing ancient battle techniques with modern sports mechanics.

Fighting for Her Honour – for which … She Will Grade You!

HORSE AND COUNTRY (UK) 15 July 13  Arundel Castle to hold four-day jousting event (Charlotte Ricca-Smith)

LITTLE HAMPTON GAZETTE (UK) July 13  Brave knights ride into battle at Arundel Castle

Eight respected international jousters participated in a four-day trial during historic Arundel Castle’s Medieval Jousting and Tournament Week.  Hunting and horsemanship skills, jousting and a small group melee determined that it was Stacy Evans who went home with bragging (and neigh-ing) honours as champion … the cash prize of near $2,400 was but a secondary consideration We’re sure.

And true to historical form of when knight’s jousted to impress their Fair Lady, the 'knight marshall' for this event was assisted in his judging by an all-female panel, who have years of equestrian and historical expertise.

Coming Up Next, ‘HEMA: TNG’

WCCO (Minneapolis, Minnesota) 09 July 13  MN Sword Club Teaches Kids How To Face Off (Jamie Yuccas)

Rich Jacobson ‘s Minnesota Sword Club has been around for 30 years, teaching kids as young as 6 the confidence and skills that come with modern or medieval fencing. “It’s not all that different except for the technique.”

We were intrigued by the comment “fighting is a natural thing for most people”.  It’s been Our modest experience that most North Americans new to the armed forces or fencing have to be ‘conditioned’ to actually close with and ‘hit with real intent and effect’ another person.

All the World’s a Stage.

REDAZIONE AOSTASERA (Aosta, Italy) 31 July 13  Il fascino della scherma medievale protagonista nel weekend a Torgnon

For those interested in stage-related sword combat, Torgnon’s "Festum Laminis" – a gathering of 18 historical combat choreography groups might provide an interesting diversion.

Historical fencing choreography is a blend of sport, entertainment and history – often set to music; with the intent to acquaint the viewer with historical fencing techniques within the context of a specific time.


COURIER MAIL (Melbourne, Australia) 07 July 13  Enemies will face each other at the Abbey Medieval Tournament this weekend.

From the kind people that brought you Australian Rules Football (which would have been a recognised medieval sport for developing squires … if there had been an Australia in Europe at the time); this week they offer …  Turkish Oil Wrestling.