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Fiore de'i Liberi/Sword in One Hand

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Morgan Transcription [edit]
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Getty Transcription [edit]
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MS Ludwig XV 13 20r-c.jpg
MS Ludwig XV 13 20r-d.jpg

[1] We are three players who want to kill this master. One that will deliver a thrust, the other a cut (taglio), the other wants to throw his sword at the said master. So that it will be a great spectacle for him not to be killed, God make him very sorrowful.

We are three players that wish to strike this Master. One would strike with the point, another the edge, and another wants to throw his sword against the aforesaid Master, so that it will be a great feat indeed if this Master is not killed. Would that God made him very crafty.

[2] Whether throwing the sword or striking cuts and thrusts,
Nothing will trouble me because of the guard that I hold.
Come one by one whoever wants to go against me
Because I want to contend with them all.
And whoever wants to see covers and strikes,
Taking the sword and binding without fail,
Watch what my Scholars know how to do:
If you don't find a counter, they have no equal.

You are bad, and of this art know little. You do things which have no place in words. Come then, one by one, who can do it. And even if you were one hundred, I would wound you all, because of this guard, which is a good and powerful thing. I advance (acresso) the foot which is in front a little out of the way and with the left I pass traversing. And in this passing cross beating the swords I find uncovered and surely I will make injuries. And if a spear or sword is thrown at me, all will be beaten away, as I said, passing out of the way, as you will see in my plays hereafter. I pray you to look at them. And even with a sword one-handed I will do my art, as is shown in these papers.









You are wicked and of this art you know little; you do things that words cannot describe. Come one by one whoever knows what to do and is able, and even if you are a hundred I will waste all of you with this guard (which is so good and strong). I advance my forward foot slightly out of the way, and with my left I step to the side. I cover myself during that step, beating your swords and finding you uncovered, and I will be certain to strike you. And whether lance or sword is thrown at me, I will beat them all just as I have said, stepping out of the way according to that which you see in my plays hereafter. Watch what I show to you, and with the sword in one hand I will make my art.

















[3] With a step, I have made a cover with my sword
And it has quickly entered into your chest.

[Described in the previous Getty and Morgan text.]

[4] Here I have struck you in your head
From the cover that I have made so quickly.

[5] In this way, I uncover you to strike you with my point
To avenge myself on you of every neglect and injury.

What the master said I have done well; that is I passed out of the way making a good cover. And I find the player uncovered, so that I surely want to put a thrust in his face. And with my left hand I want to try to make your sword go to the ground if I can.



I have done that which the Master has said, that is, I stepped out of the way making a good cover. And I found the player uncovered such that I certainly want to thrust my point in his face. And I want to try this with my left hand, to see if I can make your sword hit the ground.





[6] Again I have struck your head without stepping
Because of the good cover that I knew to make.

In everything I have found you uncovered, and I surely have injured you in the head. And if I want to pass forward with the rear foot, I can do a lot of gioco stretti against you; that is binds, breaks and wrestling.



I have found you completely uncovered and I have struck you in the head for certain. And if I want to step forward with my rear foot, I can make many narrow plays against you (that is, the binds and breaks of grappling).





[7] Because of the hand that I have put beneath your hilt,
If your sword doesn't hit the ground, call me feeble.

I can injure you with a cut (taglio) and a thrust. Also, if I advance (acresco) the forward foot, I can bind you in ligadura mezana, which is drawn before, at the 3rd play of the 1st Master, Dagger Remedy. Also, I can do this play which is after me. And in this way I can injure and also bind you.

[In the Getty, the Scholar's opponent has his right foot forward. In the Paris, the Scholar wears a crown.]




[8] With my left arm, I have bound your right
And will you be presented with many strikes.

Your sword and your arm are well entrapped, and you cannot free yourself, that you don't get hurt by my way, because you seem to know little of this play.

[In Vadi, the Scholar's opponent stands with his right foot forward.]



[9] Because of the way in which I have caught your sword,
Quickly I will have your hand empty.

Here I can injure you well, and disarm your sword without fail, turning it around the hand, I will make you turn, in a way that it is better for you to release the sword.



[10] For that you could overthrow (batter) the swords you must come into the binding
Here at last on the other hand it is yourself who will go forward.

(Translation by Anonymous)

[This Master appears to be missing his crown.]

[11] I will make you turn with the left hand
And in that, I want to give you a great blow.

Here I can injure you in the front, and this is not enough for me, for pinching you at the elbow I will make you turn, to injure you in the rear, and I will shove my sword at your neck, so that you will not defend yourself from this.



[12] Because of the turn that I have given you by your elbow
I believe I have cut you across the throat.

For that play which is before me, in the way I made you turn, and immediately I shoved my sword to your neck. If I do not cut your throat, then I am sorrowful and foolish.



[13] This is a good break of the point on the ground
And in this fashion you will come to be in the narrow.

You cast a thrust at me, and I beat it to the ground. You see you are uncovered, and I can injure you. Again, I want to make you turn, to injure you worse. And I will injure you in the middle of you back.



[14] I have sending you to the ground in my thoughts:
Again, you are uncovered so that I can strike you.

For the turn I made you do, pinching you by the elbow, to this part I have come well and immediately, for the chance to shove you to the ground, so that you do not make war on me nor any other again.



[15] Either your sword is bent or it is broken
And I can strike you from above or from below with mine.

This one I dragged by the head, and I beat his sword. I have come to this part. Also, I will make you turn, not to fail. And I put the sword to your neck, while I am daring.



[17] In order to wound you again with this, my point,
I have added my left hand to the sword.

This is a play in which, wanting to be armoured wants to put a thrust. When someone delivers thrusts and cuts, you do the cover, and immediately put this to him in the way that is drawn.

[The Getty image resembles the Pisani-Dossi, including the lack of armor.]



This is a play in which he who wants to thrust the point wants to be armored. When someone strikes at you with the point, or with the edge, make the cover and immediately thrust this in the way that is depicted.





  1. The "s" replaces an earlier letter that was scraped off, possible "S".
  2. Written as "e" and then corrected to "i".
  3. Word contains both an abbreviation for "r" and another letter was overwritten to "r"; it could also be read as "ferirere", but that's not a word.
  4. The second letter appears to have been corrected.
  5. Possible letter “a” above sanguineo, but nothing else. Unclear whether the “a” is the end of a mostly-erased note, or part of a word-order note that has been erased.
  6. This page is showing ink from the other side much more than usual.