Sword Press in Modern Times

This week’s offering is eclectic in origin and subject, sometimes one just gets lucky.  The major lesson that the Major would like you to take away today is that the cost of some of our kit can be substantial – take care of it – and each others’.


Making Swords in Modern Times


SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST (Hong Kong, China) February 12  Mania for swords makes blacksmith’s fortune

In the rice fields of the Philippines; farmers and ex-soldiers are turning old truck leaf-springs into creditable replicas of famous movie swords.

For one ex-soldier, a government retraining initiative allowed him to acquire the blacksmith skills necessary to become a blacksmith – which in turn led him into making kitchen knives.  His proximity to a U.S. military base resulted in him doing specialised piece-work for specialised knives and swords – and then he hit ‘the big time’ helping to fulfill the demand for movie and fantasy swords in North America.



Losing Swords in Modern Times


DAILY NEWS (Taranaki, New Zealand) 13 February 12  Thieves pillage weapons, armour (John Anthony)

The New Zealand Viking-re-creation group ‘Midgard Vikingrs’ had two helmets and three swords were stolen from the Vikings’ camp during their warm-up run.  Included in the stolen items was a $5000 English long sword built by Weta Workshop’s master swordsmith Peter Lyon.

One of the truly great things WMA groups can do for their art is to put on exciting, authentic and safe demonstrations of our studies for the others in public venues.  Unfortunately, it does happen that when most eyes are turned to the action, some will use the occasion to steal from a temporarily neglected or improperly-stored cache of fighting kit.

First, if you can’t lock-up your kit, have it ‘guarded’ by someone not involved with inter-acting with the public (those Renaissance-style bodice lacings can be so-o-o distracting).  Second, carry photos of your kit  – and etch/indelibly mark it if possible (without detracting from neither utility nor value) – this makes recovery – and a quick return much easier for the local sheriff.



Symbols in Modern Times


EL UNIVERSO (Guayaquil, Ecuador) 05 February 12  Las espadas de Eloy Alfaro, un símbolo político recurrente

In Ecuador, former members of the AVC anti-government group returned to the government the swords that they had stolen in 1983.  The subsequent guardianship of the blades of 19th century presidents Eloy Alfaro and Pedro J. Montero are now a point of contention between rival federal and municipal leaders in that country.

Story and Photos at URL below.





Everybody Loves Swords! (Yes, in Modern Times)


HUFFINGTON POST (UK) 15 February 12  Ministry Of Defence Lose £527,879 In Items Over 10 Months

Photo at URL … you’ll see it!



Our Parthian Shot for Modern Times


SUNDAY ZAMAN (Istanbul, Turkey) 09 October 11  Traditional Ottoman archery revived at Biga  (Mehmet Ali Poyraz)

And for those of you who caught the Borsos Torz Horse Archery Club’s invitation within Jennifer’s previous Cavaliere Program post, here’s a slightly stale-dated piece on the state of the art …

Turkey is attempting to revive historical horse archer skills with the annual Osman Bey Traditional Archery Competition held in Biga.  Apparently, the West, the Orient and the Persian Gulf are not alone in trying to revive ‘uniquely cultural’ martial arts.

Hundreds of competitors, men and women from seven nations; over sixty dressed as traditional janissaries, some as samurai and even some as Mohican warriors, demonstrated their skills in both ‘foot’ and ‘kabak’ or mounted shooting.

Biga District Governor Fatih Genel who oversaw the creation of the archery event:  “Each and every Turk has a penchant for horseback riding and archery in their soul. What we should do is to trigger this hidden yearning”.


You can see additional coverage of this keystone martial arts event at:

Biga atlı okçuluk ve okçuluk müsabakası Ekim 2011