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Scola, overo teatro (Nicoletto Giganti)

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Scola, overo teatro
School, or Fencing Hall
Scola overo Teatro i.jpg
Full title Scola, overo teatro, nelquale sono
rappresentate diverse maniere, e modi di
parare, e di ferire di spada sola, e di spada,
e pugnala
Author(s) Nicoletto Giganti
Illustrated by Odoarco Fialetti
Dedicated to Cosimo II de' Medici
Place of origin Siena, Tuscany
Language Italian
Genre(s) Fencing manual
Publisher Giovanni Antonio & Giacomo de' Franceschi
Publication date 1606, 1610, 1619, 1622, 1628, 1644
Pages 95 pages
Treatise scans

Scola, overo teatro ("School, or Fencing Hall") is an Italian fencing manual written by Nicoletto Giganti and printed in 1606. It treats the use of the single rapier and the rapier and dagger. The treatise is structured as a series of progressively more complex lessons, and Tom Leoni opines that this treatise is the best pedagogical work on rapier fencing of its time.[1] Based on the number of republications over the succeeding decades it seems to have been quite popular, and fencing historians have praised it both for its organization and as the first text to fully describe the use of the lunge.

Publication History

Scola, overo teatro was first printed in Venice in 1606 by Giovanni Antonio and Giacomo de' Franceschi. The Grand Duchy of Tuscany granted Giganti a special protection against unauthorized reprints for a term of 30 years, but this copyright was repeatedly ignored, including a 1610 printing and the 1628 edition published in Padua by Paolo Frambotto.

In 1619, still within the copyright period, the treatise was translated into French and German and published in Frankfurt by Jacques de Zeter under the title Escrime Novvelle ov Theatre ("New Fencing or Theater"). He also included translations of Salvator Fabris' 1606 treatise, which has oddly lead various fencing historians to accuse Giganti of plagiarism. This parallel edition was reprinted in 1622 and again in 1644.

In 2010, Scola, overo teatro was translated into English by Tom Leoni and published by Freelance Academy Press under the title Venetian Rapier: The School, or Salle. A second English translation, titled Nicoletto Giganti's the School of the Sword was released in 2014 by Aaron Taylor Mediema.


i - iii Preface by Nicoletto Giganti
v - xiv Publisher's preface
1 - 47 Rapier by Nicoletto Giganti
48 - 95 Rapier and dagger by Nicoletto Giganti


Title pages

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Medici Heraldry
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Figure 1
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Figure 2
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Figure 3
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Figure 4
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Figure 5
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Figure 6
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Figure 7
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Figure 8
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Figure 9
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Figure 10
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Figure 11
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Figure 12
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Figure 13
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Figure 14
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Figure 15
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Figure 16
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Figure 17
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Figure 18
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Figure 19
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Figure 20
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Figure 21
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Figure 22
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Figure 23
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Figure 24
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Figure 25
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Figure 26
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Figure 27
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Figure 28
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Figure 29
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Figure 30
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Figure 31
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Figure 32
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Figure 33
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Figure 34
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Figure 35
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Figure 36
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Figure 37
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Figure 38
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Figure 39
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Figure 40
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Figure 41
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Figure 42
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Additional Resources

  • Leoni, Tom. Venetian Rapier: The School, or Salle. Nicoletto Giganti's 1606 Rapier Fencing Curriculum. Wheaton, IL: Freelance Academy Press, 2010. ISBN 978-0-9825911-2-3
  • Miedema, Aaron Taylor. Nicoletto Giganti's the School of the Sword: A New Translation by Aaron Taylor Miedema. Legacy Books Press, 2014. ISBN 978-1927537077


  1. Leoni, p xi.

Copyright and License Summary

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

Work Author(s) Source License
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Transcription Index:Scola, overo teatro (Nicoletto Giganti)