Featured Image - Reading List for the Medieval Reenactment and Living History Resource The Turnip of Terror

Martial Arts

UPDATED 09/01/2023

English Martial Arts
by Terry Brown
“This book investigates the weapons, history and development of the English fighting system and some of the beliefs and social pressures that helped mould it. The second half examines various English fighting techniques drawn from historical texts and manuscripts including bare-fist fighting, broadsword, quarterstaff, bill, sword and buckler and sword and dagger.”

English Swordsmanship: The True Fight of George Silver
By Stephen Hand
“Stephen Hand has delivered what may well be his Magnum Opus, a detailed study in text and photographs of his best form, the swordsmanship of the 16th century English swordmaster, George Silver. In nearly 800 photographs, Mr. Hand explores the depth of Silver’s technique, presenting for the student a clear and concise path to fighting with the single-handed sword.”

Le Jeu de la Hache
Anonymous c. 1400
“(“The Play of the Axe”, MS Français 1996), is a French fencing manual written in ca. 1400 by an anonymous Milanese fencing master in service to Philip II “the Bold”, duke of Burgundy… The earliest extant treatise on the use of the poleaxe, the manuscript is possesses detailed descriptions of a variety of techniques.”

Master Of Defence: The Works of George Silver
by Paul Wagner, 2003
“George Silver’s Paradoxes of Defence (1599) and Brief Instructions upon my Paradoxes of Defence (ca. 1605) are probably the most important works ever written on the Western martial tradition, straddling the medieval and Renaissance worlds and summing up the collective experience of centuries of European warcraft. With in-depth analyses by the author and others, this is an indispensable reference.”

Medieval Wrestling
by Jessica Finley
“In this first of its kind book, Jessica Finley of the renowned medieval martial arts association, the Selohaar Fechtschule, guides the reader on a journey that begins with the historical background of Ott’s wrestling and culminates in step-by-step instruction for practicing the techniques of this ancient fighting art. Both the lover of history and the wrestler on the mat will find this work an invaluable resource.”

The Schoole of the Noble and Worthy Science of Defence
by Joseph Swetnam, 1617
“An English fencing manual written by Joseph Swetnam and printed in 1617. This book contains both instructions for the use of weapons, and an in-depth discussion of both proper and improper behavior of those who would wield said weapons, particularly in the context of settling quarrels. The weapons focused on in this book are rapier and dagger, sword and dagger, backsword, single rapier, short sword, and staff.”

Veni Vadi Vici
by Guy Windsor, 2013
“A transcription, translation and commentary of Philippo Vadi’s De Arte Gladiatoria Dimicandi manuscript, by Guy Windsor.”

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