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| name                = [[name::André des Bordes]]
 
| name                = [[name::André des Bordes]]
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'''André des Bordes''' (Abraham Racinot; 1582-1625) was a [[century::17th century]] [[nationality::French]] [[fencing master]]. Nothing is known of this master's youth other than the fact that he studied swordsmanship in Italy for many years and achieved some degree of mastery. After returning to his native France, he soon befriended the future duke Henri, and was appointed fencing master to Duke Charles III of Lorraine in 1606. When Henri became duke in 1609, Bordes was named a gentleman, and in August of 1609 he was raised to nobility (with the usual fees waived). Earlier that year in June, he had married Marie Olivier, a woman from a distinguished family in Pont-à-Mousson.
 
'''André des Bordes''' (Abraham Racinot; 1582-1625) was a [[century::17th century]] [[nationality::French]] [[fencing master]]. Nothing is known of this master's youth other than the fact that he studied swordsmanship in Italy for many years and achieved some degree of mastery. After returning to his native France, he soon befriended the future duke Henri, and was appointed fencing master to Duke Charles III of Lorraine in 1606. When Henri became duke in 1609, Bordes was named a gentleman, and in August of 1609 he was raised to nobility (with the usual fees waived). Earlier that year in June, he had married Marie Olivier, a woman from a distinguished family in Pont-à-Mousson.
  
In 1610, Bordes completed a treatise on fencing entitled ''[[Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes)|Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes]]'' ("Discourse on Theory, Practice, and Excellence at Arms"); it was published in Nancy and dedicated to the Duke. Bordes' treatise seems to largely be an abbreviated French translation of [[Camillo Palladini]]'s 1555 Italian treatise ''[[Discorso sopra l'arte della scherma (MS 14.10)|Discorso di Camillo Palladini Bolognese sopra l'arte della scherma come l'arte della scherma è necessaria à chi si diletta d'arme]]'' (De Walden Library 14/10).
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In 1610, Bordes completed a treatise on fencing entitled ''[[Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes)|Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes]]'' ("Discourse on Theory, Practice, and Excellence at Arms"); it was published in Nancy and dedicated to the Duke. Bordes' treatise seems to largely be an abbreviated French translation of [[Camillo Palladini]]'s Italian treatise ''[[Discorso sopra l'arte della scherma (MS 14.10)|Discorso di Camillo Palladini Bolognese sopra l'arte della scherma come l'arte della scherma è necessaria à chi si diletta d'arme]]'' (De Walden Library 14/10).
  
 
After this, Bordes' wealth and prestige increased; in 1612 he was appointed captain, warden and tax collector of Boulay, and in 1615, captain and provost of Sierck. In 1617, he joined the duchy's Council of State and gained the title Squire. At some point, Bordes also seems to have served as a foreign ambassador for Lorraine. Events turned against Bordes after the death of Henri II in 1624. His political enemies contrived to have him imprisoned on charges of witchcraft in November of that year, and on 28 January 1625 Bordes confessed to the crime and was executed by strangulation and burned.
 
After this, Bordes' wealth and prestige increased; in 1612 he was appointed captain, warden and tax collector of Boulay, and in 1615, captain and provost of Sierck. In 1617, he joined the duchy's Council of State and gained the title Squire. At some point, Bordes also seems to have served as a foreign ambassador for Lorraine. Events turned against Bordes after the death of Henri II in 1624. His political enemies contrived to have him imprisoned on charges of witchcraft in November of that year, and on 28 January 1625 Bordes confessed to the crime and was executed by strangulation and burned.
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{{master begin
 
{{master begin
  | title = [Treatise]
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  | title = Dedication and Foreword
 
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  | width = 90em
 
}}
 
}}
{| class="floated master"
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{| class="master"
 
|-  
 
|-  
! <p>Images<br/></p>
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! <p>Illustrations<br/></p>
! <p>{{rating}}<br/></p>
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! <p>{{rating|C}}<br/>by [[Rob Runacres]]</p>
 
! <p>[[Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes)|Transcription]]<br/>by [[Olivier Dupuis]]</p>
 
! <p>[[Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes)|Transcription]]<br/>by [[Olivier Dupuis]]</p>
  
 
|-  
 
|-  
 
|  
 
|  
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| '''DISCOURSE OF THE THEORY AND PRACTICE OF THE EXCELLENCE OF ARMS'''
 +
 +
By Sieur Des-bordes.
 +
 +
At NANCY, by ANDRE BLAISE, ordinary printer of His Highness, with Privilege.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/9|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| MANET ALTA / MENTE REPOSTUM NOBILIS LOTHARINGUS / ANDREAS DESBORDES ANNO AETATIS XXVIII
 +
 +
This book you can make wise of the body, of the spirit, of courage
 +
 +
Made at Nancy by I.A. 1610
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/10|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| '''TO HIS HIGHNESS SIR'''
 +
 +
My inclination, having taken me away from your regions, the place of my birth, [was] to make me capable in some way to the honour of your service. I made the choice of arms, to have more confidence to carry my life to that which Your Highness would look upon. Italy, which has given me the lessons [in arms], and the memory of my homeland obliged me to come offer the effects<ref>In other words, offer his knowledge and skills.</ref> . And now that the beneficence of your highness has drawn me from the exercise of arms and given me the means and leisure to put down the Theory, I have provided a few hours of my service with Your Person, for the employment
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/11|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| in this work, who has sympathy for this feat, familiar to anyone of your house. Finding that it will always serve you, whether to teach for your nobles and from the greatest of your subjects and the bravest, to the least of your people, the most necessary postures for the preservation of their persons, so that one cannot reproach me of ingratitude that I pay the benefits of Your HIGHNESS, not to leave to posterity another mark of my obedience, the honour of being your premier Valet de Chambre. Therefore, receive in the attendant discourse that I am so happy to be able to merit the quality of MONSIEUR, very humble, and very obedient, a subject and servant of your Highness.
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 +
Des-bordes.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/12|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
 +
| '''To Monsieur Baron D'Anserville, Sir'''
 +
 +
If it is allowed for everyone to talk about his art, and no one to abuse it, will I have license to talk to you about the excellence of fencing, and that my discourse cannot approach the esteem of you in deeds? You are born with this advantage that your valour makes your life without enemies, and [with] your courtesy you have acquired many friends. I promise myself at least this favour that cannot hate anyone, you honour me with your gallantry; taking the cause of this issue against those who despise its value, it is an effect of leisure that your good nature obtained me, which I beg you not to disavow the quality [of the aforementioned gallantry].
 +
 +
Your humble servant
 +
 +
Des-bordes
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/13|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| '''TO THE READER'''
 +
 +
I come to see you as a friend; do not receive me as unwelcome. Possibly, after you have paraded my reputation to your fancy, you say that I can be useful. Because I give you the same lessons that the most famous of Italy Have taught to many brave Cavaliers, French, Spanish, Italian, German, and others.
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 +
I know very well that many wish illustrations were in the suite of the discourse, some to better notice the difference in the blows, in the variety of the postures; others merely to discuss the pleasantness of the paintings. I satisfy therefore to those that the postures may only represent one action, and that through the discourse one can know all sorts of guards. I give to others the journey to Flanders or Italy to satisfy their curiosity about the pleasantries<ref>As in the pictures</ref> that are displayed there, telling them that I only speak to those who want to learn.
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/14|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
 +
| '''TO HIS HIGHNESS'''
 +
<poem>To honour the immortal
 +
One provided, on their altar,
 +
That which the one judged the most worthy
 +
It gave the Peacock to Juno
 +
To Venus one devoted a pledge
 +
As something proper to their name.
 +
So great Prince, equal to the gods,
 +
DESBORDES presents to your eyes
 +
A book who worthy sacrifice
 +
Wants to speak to posterity
 +
That you are in truth
 +
That as Alexander is in esteem
 +
His valour, his courtesy,
 +
His great beneficence,
 +
His prudence, were his glory,
 +
But all that write of him,
 +
May recognize today
 +
In you, in effect in him, history.</poem>
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/15|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
 
|  
 
|  
| [http://ardamhe.free.fr/biblio/desbordes_edition.pdf Text to copy over]
+
| '''To MONSIEUR DESBORDES on his book,'''
 +
<poem>Desbordes knows to show, here by writing,
 +
This that one owes the occupation to demonstrate by effect
 +
One who can teach you well in your postures
 +
Can be courageous, render Perfect Master,
 +
That an ignorant critic does not mention through boredom
 +
For I know that the effect may well save the life.</poem>
 +
P. Ditheau
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/16|1|lbl=#}}
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|}
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{{master end}}
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{{master begin
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| title = Rapier
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| width = 90em
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}}
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{| class="master"
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|-
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! <p>Illustrations<br/></p>
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! <p>{{rating|C}}<br/>by [[Rob Runacres]]</p>
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! <p>[[Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes)|Transcription]]<br/>by [[Olivier Dupuis]]</p>
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 +
 
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|-
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|
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| '''Chap. 1. Discourse of Mr Desbordes touching the theory, practice, and the excellence of weapons.'''
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I want to show for the understanding of weapons (a subject that I have taken to task) that the practice and the use of fencing can save lives, analyse and scare our enemies, [and] triumph over those who assail us, provided that one has the time to defend oneself as is necessary. However, so as to reach the goal more quickly, I will not detain you to describe the praises that from day to day are recognized by the children of this art. However I wish to persuade
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/17|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| the Masters and the students to follow the precepts that I teach, and which I practice to the advantage of all those who receive the lessons. I laugh at the opinion of the vulgar who say without reason that, coming to blows, one does not have the judgement to put into practice the cut and the thrusts that one has learned in the Academies. At least, one cannot deny that it strengthens the arms, that it renders a man fitter by exercise, even that it does not carry other favours to life, and even when it happens that coming to blows he will deprive himself of his posture, the other in order not to observe the tempi, always take the risk of being injured. Besides, it is even discussed in high society that he who often makes this exercise will extend his bottes and advance the foot with more flexibility and ease than he who has
 +
no other art than the natural [and] no other handling than necessity makes him take. I have therefore concluded
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/18|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| that those who have contempt of fencing, and who want to be practiced in arms, are like ignorant goldsmiths, burning their gold instead of refining, very different to those who have the use and the science, who, far from burning it, give such a form as they please.
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/19|1|lbl=#}}
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 +
|-
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|
 +
| '''Chap. 2. Consideration as one must be in their guards.'''
 +
 
 +
It will not be amiss for us to place before the eyes the works of Camille Agrippa<ref>Agrippa, Camillo, Treatise on the Science of Arms (Rome, 1553)</ref>, the most expert of all of this profession. He places the guards alphabetically A B C D, wanting this order to serve the progress of his work. Nevertheless, the premiere marked A should not be in my judgement as high as D: the arm
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/19|2|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| should be more ready for the offensive and for the defensive, which makes me say that it must be a little more extended with the step, because it eases the right side to be quicker to attack and to parry the blows that may occur. Also, the posture for the offensive is more sustainable than he teaches, as the enemy is more in fear of being struck from this guard than any other, and because these principal guards are more understandable. I will discuss the first four as you will see in this discourse.
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/20|1|lbl=#}}
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 +
|-
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|
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| '''Chap. 3. The four principal guards'''
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 +
In this I outline the four main guards, premiere, seconde, tierce, and quarte, to serve as a beginning to this work, they consist of this kind. All those who wear a sword by custom or by merit,
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/20|2|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| whether provoked by words, or agitated with anger to come to blows, represent all four. The premiere, having drawn the sword entirely out of the sheath, they raise the arm in the same tempo to strike. The seconde, while holding firm, they lower the hand a little, with the arm to the equal of the sword. The tierce, at the same time that they put themselves into posture with the sword near the knee at the outside<re>In other words, on the inside of that knee which is to the outside. I am indebted to Olivier Dupuis for correcting my original translation, which was ‘near the outside of the knee’, similar to a ‘Bolognese’ guard of coda lunga e stretta.</ref>. The quarte, bringing the sword hand to the inside of the knee. These are here the principal guards, and from which all others derive as their elements, and from which they are strengthened as their foundations, that we placed here in order, but first I will discuss how to hit so you do not resemble the Alchemists without experience, who derive from their science only vanity, and who make it look like a trick, and an obscurity.
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/21|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| The fencing masters must, by judgement and by reason, teach steps to their pupils, to strengthen them, and to make them acquire a greater disposition; to recognize for themselves the tempi to gain the advantage, to the inside, and the outside, and to all occurrences which may occur to parry and to attack, because they will have such ease in the handling of the sword, they will do everything by industry and nothing by adventure, even as they disturb the memory of their enemies so, that they cannot use their lessons to offend, nor refrain from being offended. I take as witness the most famous Masters of antiquity, like le Pape de Milan le Beccaroni, and the Mancino de Boulogne<ref>Manciolino of Bologna</ref>, and many others who have made a worthy profession of this noble exercise.
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 +
That is why he who knows the way to advance and to retire may render himself expert in making his
 +
observations.
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/22|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| Here are the observances which I intend that one teaches to students. That they walk step by step, both forwards and backwards, with weapons in hand, traversing only the right and the left, exercising to make the steps on the line that traverse the circle.
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/23|1|lbl=#}}
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 +
|-
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|
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| '''Chap. 4. Of Tempo'''
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 +
Since in all other sciences the Masters observe an order, I want to see one here, even though I do not want to make this a profession, which is why I shall say that it is of tempo, half-tempo, and counter-tempo.
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Tempo is when coming into combat your enemy strikes a blow of maindroit or of revers and in raising his arm to hit you he gives you the time to hit him.
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The half-tempo is when one hits with the point, or with the edge, at the same tempo that one parries and is called on this occasion demi-tempo for what is a half sword.
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/23|2|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| The counter-tempo is, when seeing your enemy in guard to strike you with an estocade, you go to the counter, sliding your sword against his. It is so called because the swords meet each other. It is a blow of an alert, wellpractised by the French Nobility. The thrust is now in use in Spain, Poland, and in Germany, formerly little used, for which I praise and approve, especially as the thrust keeps the enemy farther away, because the slender man can measure his sword with the stronger, provided that he has experience of this fencing to make up for his weakness. The honour of this fencing is due to the invention of my Italian Master, who gave the teachings to defend in this way.
 +
 
 +
I will discuss several other ways of hitting such as with a thrust; a cut; with a maindroit as that of revers; a fente<ref>A vertical, downwards cut, equivalent to the Italian fendente</ref> ; an estramasson<ref>A rising cut with the false edge, possibly similar to the false edge cut described by Dall’Aggochie</ref>; a rising [cut with the false edge]; with the moulinet<ref>A circular cut to the opponent’s right side, equivalent to the Italian moulineto</ref>; the feint to the right; the feint to the left;
 +
 
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/24|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| ; jartiere<ref>A ‘garter’ or cut to the leg. Note the term’s spelling varies in this work.</ref>; estocade<ref>A thrust</ref>, and of several other blows to the legs. But because they are commonplace, I will not make further discourse, especially that nature communicates the science to everyone, and although at present we do not face as large an estate of cuts as are among the common. However, even if this cut had been made promptly, it is helpful and prompt to strike as I have proved with experienced men, and brave, and who made me carry the sword to a palm's width near the face, or even less, in order to riposte my cut, [but] which was beyond their power because the movement of the wrist is swifter than the movement of the foot to carry a thrust.
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/25|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| '''Chap. 5. As one must have alert eyes'''
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 +
After having dealt with tempo, with striking,
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/25|2|lbl=#}}
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 +
|-
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|
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| it is worth warning you, in what place one must have the eye to the time of combat. So many Masters so many opinions: some want us to look at the hand, such as that from which comes the blow, others at the movement of the arm, others the face. Very good opinions and well considered, but for me I require that one looks at the tip of the enemy's sword, as it is the quickest to offend, being closer to your body than the hand. Considering that, while you would take care of the hand or the face, you can be hit easily if you have not parried the tip of your enemy's sword by ensuring that it was past your body. But because this detail requires a different reason, I will distinguish the whole in order, putting the figures where I will judge the most necessary and the easiest to the reader.
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 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/26|1|lbl=#}}
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 +
|-
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|
 +
| '''Chap. 6. As it is necessary to know how to handle all kinds of weapons'''
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 +
Everyone holds that the sword is the queen of weapons, because all the others have some exception [in their use], and that the sword is worn everywhere and in all companies. So that in the army soldier puts down all kind of weapons except for the sword. This is a great ignorance of all those who show to handle several kinds of weapons, and do not show the single sword only because he can barely teach the handling of several kinds of weapons, if they ignore the handling of the principal; one must therefore exercise it from the beginning otherwise it is [like] beating the head against the wall, as the saying goes. Afterwards one must learn the use of two swords, and then the sword & dagger. I will teach you when it is expedient to use two swords all that one can. All that one being struck to right and to left. One must show how to defend oneself, secure with the hands and making
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/27|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| steps to the right and to the left with disposition. It is necessary that the student learns to use the pike, carrying it with good grace, in order that being at war, and passing to show it in the presence of the Captains, he is seen to have experience.
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 +
When a soldier has experience of all these things, he is in better esteem. That is why it is a great error for Masters to not teach the handling of all kinds of weapons, and an even greater ignorance to presume so much faith to want to teach what they themselves do not know how to practice with reason, and with even less experience. I say that the use of weapons in general is very necessary to students who want to throw in with the militia, because their skill can be recognised to circumstances that happen in an army, according to the command of the Leader; that not being in the sight of his enemy, takes the time to exercise
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/28|1|lbl=#}}
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| the soldiers, so as to harden them; as to give pleasure to some Prince who visits, so by any combat at the barrier which could be ordered, as by some other worthy exercise of his profession. It would be a shame to the soldier to pay an excuse to the command of his captain, and remain like a statue, having not devoted himself to the exercises of his vocation. Having the assurance to say he knows not how to handle the halberd, that he has not taken a lesson, since that in war he must serve in the custody of a door, and of a narrow passage, where one cannot use the pike, nor other weapons there, so if the soldier knows not how to handle it, and it is attacked with a two-handed sword, he will lose his posture. On the contrary if he knows how to handle the halberd, he will defend himself [Against the two handed sword] and with the pike because the halberd is more agile for parrying, as I shall show in its place with such ease that you will be compelled to
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/29|1|lbl=#}}
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|-
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|
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| acknowledge that all the others have but skimmed over this discourse, and that I have hit the target.
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| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/30|1|lbl=#}}
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 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 7. As one must defend with the thrust, and the manner of giving with great agility'''
 +
 
 +
Many expert men have discoursed on fencing, and have even written on it, wanting particularly that to strike a thrust one makes the largest pass that one can, of which I cannot approve, for this reason. He that carries it is not assured to give, and although that he gives, by making such a great pass and turning his back according to the instruction of his Masters, he loses the sight of the use of the left hand<ref>Probably a criticism of Agrippa’s recommendation to turn the head away when lunging.</ref>, it will be even precipitate against the sword of his enemy. Thus we can easily understand how this guard is dangerous, and that he must avoid the great pass, because in addition to the peril it causes, he wastes breath and force.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/30|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 8. As must give<ref>As in strike</ref> and parry'''
 +
 
 +
Having shown the four main guards, and given the essential rules for true fencing, of no small value, I will start with striking, and then finish with the parry, all for the common service of those who are inquirers of the virtue.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/31|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 9. Of striking'''
 +
 
 +
The philosophers are of opinion that we must understand things before starting them and that after it is easy. It is this which to me makes take guard to which the man engages most and by what manner he can keep from being offended, be it in the premiere, in the seconde, the tierce, or in the quarte. I will teach him
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/31|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
|  as [to how] he can strike, starting with the premiere guard. To follow the proposed order, here is one example.
 +
 
 +
Take your sword, and put yourself in the position that we have said above; if your enemy wants to attack you in this premiere guard, it will be good to find his sword to the outside in a cross, in order for him to disengage his to strike underneath and, in case that he is not too distant, when he wishes to lengthen his thrust this way, you shall lower your point towards the ground, shocking his own in passing with the left foot, and striking him under the sword.<ref>Dupuis suggests that Des-Bordes is in fact suggesting the fencer lowers the whole sword as the enemy attempts to thrust underneath, thereby striking with the quillions. This author considers that the lowering of the point may indicate a parry with the false edge, but that would not lend itself to a following thrust under the enemy’s sword.</ref>
 +
 
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/32|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 10. As one must strike seconde against seconde'''
 +
 
 +
From the premiere guard, it is fitting to come to the seconde, so if you want to attack from the seconde guard, you must find the sword
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/32|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| of your enemy from within, so that he has subject to move. Let us say also, if he moves to strike at the same tempo as you have covered. So without parrying you lower your sword, while that of your opponent makes his journey towards yours.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/33|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 11. The tierce against the tierce'''
 +
 
 +
Having discussed the first two, we must not forget the tierce against the tierce, so that everything feels its order, facilitating our work to give a greater understanding to those who are curious to have knowledge of arms.
 +
 
 +
Attacking with the tierce against the tierce, I want you enter to the inside with resolution, that you beat the sword of your enemy, feigning to carry a thrust to him in the stomach, which
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/33|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| will oblige him to parry, and then you lower the point and strike to him to the right side over his sword, and it will hit without you running any risk.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/34|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 12. The quarte against the quarte'''
 +
 
 +
Since I have divided the guards into four, and as I have already talked about the first three, it remains to deal with the quarte against the quarte. In this exercise caution is necessary, and in this posture, we must be as swift in striking on the firm foot as to pass. I want that, going to find your enemy in this guard, you go to the outside, in order that he is forced to move his sword, and in the same tempo strike him with the quarte. At this time I have shown you the four principal guards for offending, I will speak of the defence according to the design that I have proposed.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/34|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 13. To defend against the premiere guard'''
 +
 
 +
Having shown how one can offend in the premiere, seconde, tierce, and quarte guards, I will teach the means of defence with the same postures. So while using the premiere, one comes to the outside to find he who is in the same guard; we must lower the body, and pass under his sword in the same tempo provided he comes, or deceive his sword, putting it to the inside of the quarte evading with the body. He will find nothing with which to offend, and will find himself offended. I will speak in another place as the tempo to make another blow.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/35|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 14. Defence of the seconde against the seconde'''
 +
 
 +
All the same, when being on the seconde guard you will go to find to the inside one who is in the seconde, so that your enemy caver, and gives you the tempo to carry to him; you will strike him with the quarte if you can, so that being forced to parry, and parrying he covers the stomach to guard his face, then making the quarte from under the sword, you will strike him beneath the armpit with the hand as you wish.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/36|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 15. Defence of the tierce against the tierce'''
 +
 
 +
So that one avoids with honour being offended with the tierce, as that one comes on this guard to give you, he must be taken on the inside; and lowering the point of his right side, carry to him
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/36|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
|  in the shoulder, and if he parries turn the hand in the high quarte, and he will be hit hard in the arm, body, and elsewhere. This is why he that understands the force of this science holds that the angle can be more advantageous than the straight line.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/37|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 16. Defence of the quarte against the quarte'''
 +
 
 +
To put an end to the defences of the four guards, we must speak of the last. If your enemy is on the quarte, and that you want him to find [you] from the outside, so that he gives you the tempo to hit him, you must raise your sword above his making a high quarte and carry to him with resolution, so
 +
that you parry, and that in parrying you uncover yourself, then you will have the tempo to pass in seconde under his sword.
 +
 
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/37|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 17. The quarte against the premiere'''
 +
 
 +
I want to talk equally of the first style to show the other guards in the proof of the figures that follow. This is why I told you, being in the quarte, to wait for your opponent [who is] in premiere; when he advances his point, you will parry being in quarte, and going in seconde, you will carry to him in the stomach on the right side, and if he parries, you will come in passing to fall under his sword.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/38|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 18. The seconde against the tierce'''
 +
 
 +
If you are in seconde wanting to attack he who is in tierce, you must with resolution go to your
 +
opponent's stomach, who for
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/38|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| his defence will come to beat your point from the inside, as is more convenient for him and to his advantage; then you must lower his point down, and carry to him on the right side in a high quarte. If he comes to fall back, you will lift yourself from your position with resolution and strike him in the shoulder. One could even feint with similar blows but I shall finish [so as] not to weary you by the length of their lecture.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/39|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 19. The premiere against the tierce'''
 +
 
 +
If you put yourself in the tierce, and your enemy is in premiere, and that he strikes you, you must parry and present the point of your sword to his face, so that he parries; and while he parries, you will pass on his side, striking him with the seconde. By parrying still the same botte, you
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/39|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| will be able to strike him a slash to the face and, parrying suddenly, lower a blow to his leg; in parrying you can even enter with the left foot and join the arms of your enemy to his sword, giving him a thrust in the stomach. Besides this you will be able to relieve him of his sword by turning your left arm.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/40|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 20. Various ways of the premiere'''
 +
 
 +
If you want to cover the sword of your enemy outside or to the inside so that he disengages, you will be able to hit him in the same tempo that he moves. But if he wants to set upon yours, and he does not move his, you will only put your hand in seconde, presenting the point to the stomach, and he will be struck; and you will understand that the angle beats the straight line, by observing the posture that I teach.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/40|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| While your enemy sets upon your sword, you will be able to hit him, or in lowering the point, pressing on the sword, or, under the armpit in passing the left foot, he will be struck with the quarte, though this kind of blows rarely happen, and by observing the tempi you will make this blow, and many others even more difficult.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/41|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 21. Resolution of the single sword which is used in disputes'''
 +
 
 +
In the play of the single sword there are greater virtues which do not consist in the postures as for the other plays, that with the single sword you will find the enemy to give him terror. To do this, you must hold the sword high in the tierce, going against his opponent until you approach the point of his sword, then you must make
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/41|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| a feint over his point to the outside, returning quickly with the hand in quarte; you will avoid the blow of his sword, and will carry to him in the face.
 +
The same is made with the opposite effect; in striking you must move the sword in seconde. So this manner of fencing is called the step of deception.
 +
 
 +
He who has the patience to stand in that high tierce, when the enemy comes to cover his sword, while he covers it, must remove the body back without stepping, so that he [the enemy] pursues it, and he must as he advances the foot carry to him[the enemy] with resolution to the inside, depending on whether you recognize the advantage provided on the left foot, and therefore you will learn to break your measure, and to not let yourself be forced to leave by necessity.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/42|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| '''Chap. 22. To strike with a cut'''
 +
 
 +
To strike with a cut, if you want to be the first assailant, you must be in the wide tierce, attacking him in this way: if your enemy holds his sword long in the tierce you will strike his point with the false edge on the weakest place, and if he carries a cut to your face or leg, remaining with his sword in quarte, to parry several blows by removing your point, you must parry in quarte, going in the seconde which you will carry to his stomach: afterwards you must retire first in order that he does not have the satisfaction of coming to carry to you. And in case he comes in desperation to thrust you below the hand, you must lower yours to hinder his sword, and suddenly you will strike to him in the stomach, striking him first.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/43|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| Being still in the same tierce, you will carry to him a quarte to the face to force him to parry, and by feinting you will strike him a revers to the head, or a jartiere, or else some other downward blow, passing on your left foot to his right side, and if he parries and your sword remains in the presence, in his first movement you can enter with the point, feinting to give him a downwards blow to the arm with a maindroit or a revers, and if striking the sword to the inside he lowers the point in changing his posture, he will be struck by the sword in the stomach. If you want to wait for your enemy to force him to come to you and to carry to you with a maindroit or a revers, if he strikes with a maindroit, you need to parry with the sword to the end hand in quarte, by binding with the point as we have said here before. If he carries a revers to you, parry with the seconde, so that he lowers his sword, and with the same seconde you will carry to him in the stomach.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/44|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| If your enemy wants to strike you with a premiere, you must parry with a revers, and strike him in the same tempo a maindroit to the face, or parry on the outside and strike him with a seconde. So I will put an end to the discourse of cuts and estramasson (stramazone).By our discourse it will seem to many that it is difficult to offend and to defend oneself with the point, to attack and to parry, because there are many feints, which nevertheless can be done easily.
 +
 
 +
To not cool the courage of the Cavaliers, and to not remove their assurance to strike their enemies [when] coming to blows, this way of striking is very good.
 +
 
 +
Especially since the premiere guard is dreadful, and it seems difficult to deal a more dangerous blow: however I want you to advance first up to two or three steps until you make your blow, and that you can hit your opponent, you must suddenly, without closing yourself, strike straight to the face, and
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/45|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| inasmuch that such a blow leans to the ground you will turn the hand when you can in quarte, however, lowering with the same guard to the right side of your enemy that you want to hit with this botte, you can parry then that this quarte to such an industry when properly implemented. I say the same to those who understand this profession, that there are many things that can be understood naturally, even if they be children of the art.
 +
 
 +
I will leave you in quarte having struck with the premiere, recommending you take similar guard to better parry all sorts of moves with this guard, without being subject to so many feints, as are other guards. When your enemy is in quarte for all sorts of blows, either of the point or the edge, you will put yourself in premiere, the point not as high with the arm so that your enemy cannot feint
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/46|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| striking you in one place and striking in another, although parrying there you had the advantage of your body no matter what occurs, because the nature of the man is to carry thrusts under hand, with maindroit and with revers.
 +
 
 +
To all duels the feints are useless against those who know them. Nevertheless, it will not be out of place to learn them in order to uncover them so [that] they cannot harm.
 +
 
 +
So, reader, that you can have the practice, and to exercise to many blows and feints, to know the amount of surprises that your enemy prepare for you, you must understand how you can gain the outside or the inside, which will be in this way. By covering the sword of your enemy from within, so that he takes resolution to not be subject to yours; when he
 +
 
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/47|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| strikes with his sword, strike with yours, and strike him in the stomach. But take care that while you go to cover his sword, he can pass underneath yours, and for your defence in this accident you must lower the hand and the wrist in quarte, voiding with the body, and he will remain struck in the same tempo. But if you cover it from the outside so that your enemy goes each time with the same quarte lowering the point to the ground: in parrying, you will hit him where convenience presents itself, further you will be able to disarm his sword. In the same tempo, I want you to strike him straight to the face, in order that you incite him to parry and, in parrying he bends the body as you can see set above, in a similar guard. But if he uncovers outside of your right side, without moving lowering the head and the point of the sword, pass under his with the left foot, striking him with the point to the stomach.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/48|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| While he covers, you can still go resolutely with a seconde to his face in order that he raises his arm, and [he] lifting it, pass under his sword in the same tempo, and then strike him with a seconde. Since you cover the inside, you can strike over his sword, and go to attack him with the right foot.
 +
 
 +
Covering the outside, feint to go under his sword and, in no way lowering the tip, turn it suddenly to his stomach, provided that it is on his own sword to avoid being subject to the feints which your enemy will make. You must lower your sword in a low quarte, seeing that such a guard can parry all kinds of feints.
 +
 
 +
But there is so much diversity that everyone makes them to their fancy. This is why I want to advise everyone to parry well with the sword as this serves the occasion of many quarrels.
 +
 
 +
We will leave aside all these moves that are made
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/49|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| in tierce, and will talk about certain very useful guards, and swift for all men, weak or strong as they are.
 +
 
 +
Having shown clearly with care, and with exercise, which is the most useful and convenient guard.
 +
 
 +
I find that wanting to have patience to remain in quarte, or in tierce, which are the best, since they have the power to offend, and to defend all, and if Masters keep their students more covered as they can, not considering (inappropriately) that they have to defend, and that they would be compelled to uncover on the inside or outside. But instead going from tierce to a quarte to parry, you will have more force and while parrying, you will cover yourself as much as is needed in quarrels. But we must not parry negligently as at school playing with his master. These kinds of guards can make all kinds of injuries, and parrying with the edge, as with the point in the attempt, you will find the truth
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/50|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| because these two guards, quarte and tierce, are the ships of our art. Many believe that a left-hander has the advantage against one right-handed, but those who have that view are wrong, especially since I cannot find a left-hander who has not had lessons other than from a Master who is right-handed, and that he works more with a right-hander than with a left-hander in the general exercise so that the left-hander makes with the right-hander, giving him a great advantage. But if you have to make an estramasson with a left-hander, I want you always be with the weapons in tierce, wide on the outside of his sword, so that going to strike you, he is forced to uncover himself. Asking the case that a left-hander strikes you with the point, then you must parry with your sword of the left side, striking him with the point to the stomach to the face. Secondly, if a left-hander strikes you with the edge provided that it is with a maindroit, you must parry with a seconde, and then strike him a maindroit to the head, redoubling with another for your defence.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/51|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
| Thirdly, if a revers is carried to you, you will parry with the edge of the sword, carrying a revers to him on the face or you will parry with the false, striking him with a maindroit or a revers, with the edge or the point, inside or outside, depending that you are in posture. However, the right-hander is
 +
quicker to hit than the left-hander, albeit that this parry seems difficult to you, if that you exercise all will succeed very happily.
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/52|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
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|
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|
 +
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 +
 
 +
|-
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|
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|
 +
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 +
 
 +
|-
 +
|
 +
|
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/55|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
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|
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|
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/55|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
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|
 +
|
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/56|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
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|
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|
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/56|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
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|
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|
 +
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 +
 
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|-
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|
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|
 +
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 +
 
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|-
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|
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|
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/58|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
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|
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|
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/58|2|lbl=#}}
 +
 
 +
|-
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|
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|
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/59|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
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|-
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|
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|
 +
| {{section|Page:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf/60|1|lbl=#}}
 +
 
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|-
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|
 +
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  | work        = Images
 
  | work        = Images
 
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  | source link = http://bmn-renaissance.nancy.fr/items/show/1229
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  | source title= Bibliothèque Renaissance à Nancy
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  | license    = public domain
 
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{{sourcebox
 
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  | work        = Translation
 
  | work        = Translation
  | authors    =  
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  | authors    = [[Rob Runacres]]
  | source link =  
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  | source link = http://swordschool.uk/Desbordes%201610.pdf
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  | source title= The Renaissance Sword Club
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  | license    = copyrighted
 
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  | work        = Transcription
 
  | work        = Transcription
 
  | authors    = [[Olivier Dupuis]]
 
  | authors    = [[Olivier Dupuis]]
  | source link = http://ardamhe.free.fr/biblio/desbordes_edition.pdf
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== Additional Resources ==
 
== Additional Resources ==
 +
[[Index:Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (André des Bordes) 1610.pdf|Transcription by Olivier Dupuis]]
  
 
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[http://swordschool.uk/Desbordes%201610.pdf Translation by Rob Runacres]
  
 
== References ==
 
== References ==
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[[Category:Rapier]]
 
[[Category:Rapier]]

Latest revision as of 23:01, 15 January 2022

André des Bordes
Born 1582
Nancy, Lorraine
Died 28 January 1625
Nancy, Lorraine (?)
Spouse(s) Marie Olivier
Occupation Fencing master
Patron Henri II, Duke of Lorraine
Genres Fencing manual
Language Middle French
Notable work(s) Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes (1610)
Manuscript(s) MS E.1939.65.435

André des Bordes (Abraham Racinot; 1582-1625) was a 17th century French fencing master. Nothing is known of this master's youth other than the fact that he studied swordsmanship in Italy for many years and achieved some degree of mastery. After returning to his native France, he soon befriended the future duke Henri, and was appointed fencing master to Duke Charles III of Lorraine in 1606. When Henri became duke in 1609, Bordes was named a gentleman, and in August of 1609 he was raised to nobility (with the usual fees waived). Earlier that year in June, he had married Marie Olivier, a woman from a distinguished family in Pont-à-Mousson.

In 1610, Bordes completed a treatise on fencing entitled Discours de la théorie de la pratique et de l’excellence des armes ("Discourse on Theory, Practice, and Excellence at Arms"); it was published in Nancy and dedicated to the Duke. Bordes' treatise seems to largely be an abbreviated French translation of Camillo Palladini's Italian treatise Discorso di Camillo Palladini Bolognese sopra l'arte della scherma come l'arte della scherma è necessaria à chi si diletta d'arme (De Walden Library 14/10).

After this, Bordes' wealth and prestige increased; in 1612 he was appointed captain, warden and tax collector of Boulay, and in 1615, captain and provost of Sierck. In 1617, he joined the duchy's Council of State and gained the title Squire. At some point, Bordes also seems to have served as a foreign ambassador for Lorraine. Events turned against Bordes after the death of Henri II in 1624. His political enemies contrived to have him imprisoned on charges of witchcraft in November of that year, and on 28 January 1625 Bordes confessed to the crime and was executed by strangulation and burned.

Treatise

Additional Resources

Transcription by Olivier Dupuis

Translation by Rob Runacres

References

  1. In other words, offer his knowledge and skills.
  2. As in the pictures
  3. Agrippa, Camillo, Treatise on the Science of Arms (Rome, 1553)
  4. Manciolino of Bologna
  5. A vertical, downwards cut, equivalent to the Italian fendente
  6. A rising cut with the false edge, possibly similar to the false edge cut described by Dall’Aggochie
  7. A circular cut to the opponent’s right side, equivalent to the Italian moulineto
  8. A ‘garter’ or cut to the leg. Note the term’s spelling varies in this work.
  9. A thrust
  10. Probably a criticism of Agrippa’s recommendation to turn the head away when lunging.
  11. As in strike
  12. Dupuis suggests that Des-Bordes is in fact suggesting the fencer lowers the whole sword as the enemy attempts to thrust underneath, thereby striking with the quillions. This author considers that the lowering of the point may indicate a parry with the false edge, but that would not lend itself to a following thrust under the enemy’s sword.