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Revision as of 20:57, 11 May 2015

Welcome to the Wiktenauer!

The free library of Historical European Martial Arts books and manuscripts

Without books no one can be a good teacher nor even a good student of this art.
~ Master Fiore Furlano de’i Liberi, ca. 1405

Dedicated to the memory of Dr. Patri Pugliese

Wiktenauer is an ongoing collaboration among researchers and practitioners from across the Western martial arts (WMA) community, seeking to collect all of the primary and secondary source literature that makes up the text of historical European martial arts (HEMA) research and to organize and present it in a scholarly but accessible format. The Wiktenauer project started in 2009, later receiving sponsorship from the HEMA Alliance, and is named for Johannes Liechtenauer, grand master of the oldest known longsword fencing style; his tradition was also the best-documented of the early Modern era, the subject of many dozens of manuscripts and books over a period of more than three centuries.

Wiktenauer's data model is built on separating the contents of each master's teachings from the books and manuscripts that contain them. For this reason, there are three main types of pages:

Treatise Pages host all relevant data on an individual book or manuscript, including codicological description, provenance, table of contents (with links to the appropriate master pages), gallery of page scans, and bibliography of print resources. The exemplar for manuscripts is the Goliath Fechtbuch, while the exemplar for printed books is Ergrundung Ritterlicher Kunst der Fechterey. Ultimately, every text in the corpus of Historical European Martial Arts literature will have a dedicated page.

Master Pages host the actual transcription and translation of a given master's complete works, as well as bibliographical information when available. In cases of multiple copies of a master's work, the transcriptions are laid out side-by-side to facilitate the most accurate translation possible. To aid in interpretation, the writings are also illustrated with pictures from the masters' work (if available). A bibliography at the end of each page lists additional transcriptions, translations, and scans that are available in print. The exemplar for this category of pages is Fiore de'i Liberi. Ultimately, every master in all of the traditions of Western Martial Arts will have a dedicated page.

(Anonymous texts are displayed on orphan treatise pages, which are structured like master pages but without the biography.)

If you'd like to pitch in, simply request an account and consult How can I help?

Announcements
Featured article
Andre Paurenfeyndt
Occupation
Nationality German
Patron Matthäus Lang von Wellenburg
Movement Liechtenauer Tradition
Influences Johannes Liechtenauer
Influenced
Genres
Language Early New High German
Notable work(s) Ergrundung Ritterlicher Kunst der
Fechterey
(1516)
Manuscript(s)
Concordance by Michael Chidester

Andre Paurenfeyndt (Paurñfeyndt, Paurñfeindt) was a 16th century German Freifechter. He seems to have been a resident of Vienna, although he mentions in his introduction that he served as a bodyguard to Cardinal Matthäus Lang von Wellenburg (1468 - 1540). In 1516, he wrote and published a fencing manual entitled Ergrundung Ritterlicher Kunst der Fechterey ("Founding of the Chivalric Art of Swordplay"), which Sydney Anglo notes may have been the first illustrated fencing treatise ever published. Little else is known about the life of this master, but he describes himself as a Freifechter and the contents of his book make it clear that he was associated with the tradition of Johannes Liechtenauer. His treatise diverges significantly from the earlier teachings of the Liechtenauer tradition, which may be due to his stated purpose of writing for beginning fencers.

Treatise

Please note that only the first edition (1516) has the complete set of illustrations, and all later versions are disorganized and incomplete; this article follows the order of plays and illustrations laid out in the original, and the variant sequences can be viewed on the transcription pages. Egenolff's illustrations are rather different from Paurenfeyndt's, and smaller thumbnails are included where applicable. Furthermore, the illustrations on pages 57 and 59 of the 1516 don't seem to relate to the plays described on 58 and 60, since they show pairs of fencers with dussacks while the text indicates that one of them should be unarmed. They are included here for reference, but the Egenolff illustrations (which are original and not based on Paurenfeyndt) are the ones that seem to depict something similar to the plays as described. While the Twelve Rules for the Beginning Fencer are unillustrated in Paurenfeyndt's work, this presentation includes the illustrations for six of the twelve found in the MS B.200 (1524).

(Read more…)

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Wiktenauer parent organizations

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Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA) Alliance

A US educational non-profit which provides a range of programs and services for its members and affiliate schools and clubs, as well as serving the wider HEMA community.

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Western Martial Arts Coalition (WMAC)

A pan-American network of researchers and instructors dedicated to the study of traditional European, American, and related fighting arts and martial traditions.

Wiktenauer sponsors

Each year Wiktenauer holds a two-week fundraising drive to cover our server fees and fund new projects and acquisitions. The following are the organizations are official sponsors of the 2015 fundraiser; a full list of donors can be viewed on the Contributors page.

Top three 2015 donors

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Kron Martial Arts
XKdF Network.png
xKdF Network
Schola Saint George.png
Schola Saint George


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Associació Catalana d'Esgrima Antiga
Boston Armizare.png
Boston Armizare
Fechtschule Victoria.png
Fechtschule Victoria
Longpoint HEMA Tournaments & Workshops.png
Longpoint: HEMA Tournaments & Workshops
Noble Science Academy.png
Noble Science Academy
Ottawa Swordplay.png
Ottawa Swordplay
Purpleheart Armoury.png
Purpleheart Armoury
Rhode Island Fencing Academy and Club.png
The Rhode Island Fencing Academy and Club
The School of European Swordsmanship.png
School of European Swordsmanship
Sword to Sword.png
Sword to Sword - Kunst des Fechtens
Système d'Armes.png
Système d'Armes - New Orleans
Tattershall School of Defense.png
Tattershall School of Defense