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One of the interesting poems on sword-fighting is one that mixes Messer fighting with the longsword. It is to be found in Talhoffer Fechtbuch (MS Thott.290.2º, Copenhagen, 1r) and in Martin Siber’s Fighting of the Codex Speyer (MS M.I.29, Salzburg, 3r). In June 2011 I translated and explained the poem in the Salzburg manuscript. Today I did a complete new translation and edited it by completing it with the poem of the Talhoffer book. For this I needed to sort the lines according to the structure of the Liechtenauer Zedel. A sorting of the poem following the number magic would be more true to the original structure, but would automatically need a reformatting and the deletion of content. The following lines continue more content than needed according to the old masters, but it will display a united teaching of sword and knife.

You find an Explanation of the Hans Talhoffers Fencing Poem, from Thott 290 2° made by me in 2011 if you follow the link.

For an Explanation of the verses in the Fechtbuch MI29 on Page 3r follow the link.

The strikes from above are for the thrust
The strikes from below are easy to crush
The strikes in the middle in extent
Now see what this meant
To enjoy the art
You must learn the Doubled-strikes
Who follow simple strikes
Will have less joy in the art
The Wrath-strike drills the point to the chest
Shoot above both sides
The crook-strike to the mouth
Don’t rest while Weaving-in
In the War you do snatch
Seek the mouth with the change-strike
Look out for the displacement
In the Overthrow-strike wind
And open his face you find
Out of the Parting-strike
Hit with the short edge
In the lower Overthrow-strike
Reverse in itself and learn
There are four siege guards to be known
You should well remember
But don´t fall for them too strongly
Or he will bash on them loudly
Whatever one will bind on you
Wind the short edge into
In Ox and Plough don’t give way
Joke with the Pulling-point
Be brave in the Barrier-point
In the Iron-door reverse
Failure the buffalo if you are agile

In the Iron-door play attention
with the point rise up
Sometimes up to the Unicorn
The Roses-in-the-wheel
The Pull-back in contact makes good sense
Follow the Slant-strike to hit
The Wing-strike poisons the ears
The Waking-strike wants to stay
The Driving wants to go
The Ride-after the ones before is fashion
The Quick-cuts, Run-over-cuts, and Slice-cuts
This is the common lore
Keep true to it
Those who know this
Will be praised by the art bearers