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Ergrundung Ritterlicher Kunst der Fechterey (Andre Paurenfeyndt)

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Ergrundung Ritterlicher Kunst der Fechterey
Foundation of the Chivalric Art of Swordplay
Ergrundung Ritterlicher Kunst der Fechterey 1516 title.jpg
Title page of the 1516 edition
Also known as La noble science des ioueurs d'espee
Illustrated by Unknown
Place of origin
  • Vienna (1516)
  • Antwerp (1538)
Genre(s) Fencing manual
Pages 74
Extant copies
  • E.1939.65.357 (1516)
  • Hn 236 (1538)
Treatise scans Digital scans (1538)

Ergrundung Ritterlicher Kunst der Fechterey ("Foundation of the Chivalric Art of Swordplay") is a German fencing manual by Andre Paurñfeyndt printed in 1516 in Vienna.[1] The text shows some connection to the tradition of Johannes Liechtenauer, but with significant unique material.

Sydney Anglo notes that Paurñfeyndt's is likely the earliest printed treatise on swordsmanship that includes illustrations.[2]

Publication History

Paurñfeyndt's Ergrundung Ritterlicher Kunst der Fechterey was first published in Vienna in 1516 by Hieronymus Vietor. In 1538, it was translated into Middle Walloon (a language related to French) and published by Willem Vorsterman in Antwerp,[3] where it was retitled La noble science des ioueurs d'espee. This translation omits all of Liechtenauer's verse, but retains the balance of the content and the original images. Sections of Paurñfeyndt's text were also reproduced in a 1530s book by Christian Egenolff entitled Der Altenn Fechter anfengliche kunst.

Some time before 1520, the section on pole weapons was copied into the MS German Quarto 2020 by an unknown scribe; based on the timeline and geography, it's possible that Paurñfeyndt was directly involved in this venture. In 1564, Lienhart Sollinger created a new manuscript copy of this text, which was later bound by Paulus Hector Mair into the Codex I.6.2º.2.


1 - 2 Preface by Andre Paurñfeyndt
3 - 44 Long sword by Andre Paurñfeyndt
45 - 58 Dussack by Andre Paurñfeyndt
59 - 65 Pole weapons by Andre Paurñfeyndt
66 - 67 Dagger by Andre Liegniczer
68 - 69 Sword and buckler by Andre Liegniczer
69 - 70


Title pages

German Edition (1516)
Ergrundung Ritterlicher Kunst der Fechterey 1516 title.jpg
Walloon Edition (1538)
La noble science des ioueurs d'espee 1538.jpg


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Additional Resources


  1. According to page K4r
  2. Anglo, Sydney. The Martial Arts of Renaissance Europe. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2000. p46.
  3. According to page 35v

Copyright and License Summary

For further information, including transcription and translation notes, see the discussion page.

Work Author(s) Source License
Images Herzog August Bibliothek Herzog August Bibliothek
Transcription Michael Chidester Wiktenauer