1396 source for sword play and injured hands

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1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby Thearos » 01 Mar 2014 13:13

A.M. Kristol, Manieres de langage (1396, 1399, 1415), London 1995 (Anglo-norman text society).

Among the teach-yourself materials for English nobility to learn French (Anglo-norman) in late C14th and early C15th, in the form of dialogues, note the passage below. A baker tells his apprentice to fetch water and boil it with salt, in preparation for the night's baking. Apprentice answers that he can't, "a cause que je su blesse en les mainz". How did this happen ? Answer, in full (p. 18)--

Vraiment, sir, sicome je me juay au l'espeie des deux mains ovesque un de mes compaignons, il me done un tiel horion sur la mayne qu'el la fendist tout parmy la palme jusques au os.


So note: longsword play for fun by apprentice (paging BigDummy), and no hand protection=hand injuries. (however the palm got split).
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby Thearos » 01 Mar 2014 15:27

Vraiment, sir, sicome je me juay au l'espeie des deux mains ovesque un de mes compaignons, il me done un tiel horion sur la mayne qu'el la fendist tout parmy la palme jusques au os.

Truly , sir, just as I was playing with the two-handed sword with one of my companions, he gave me such a blow on the hand that he split it in the middle of the palm to the bone
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby admin » 03 Mar 2014 08:48

This is very interesting - I don't have time to look it up right now, but what is the original sources for this exactly?
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby Thearos » 03 Mar 2014 10:56

There are these three mss. with examples of a particular genre, namely teaching dialogues to learn French, for English readers. They are dated to the very late C14th and C15th. Some refer to the victory at "Gincourt", for instance. There are examples of how to order food at an inn in French, or how to chat up a girl (basically: "Hello, do you want a drink, have I seen you before, do you have a boyfriend, do you want to be my girlfriend"), or how to insult someone, how to say grace. Lists of names of body parts, household ustensils, etc (arms and armour too)

The example I quote comes from the earliest of these mss, published by A. M. Kristol (I think it's in Cambridge). I will check to see if it's online or easily accessible, but I think Kristol's the first publication !
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby admin » 03 Mar 2014 11:11

Fascinating! I'd love to know what the primary source references are and try to see them (or transcriptions).
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby Thearos » 04 Mar 2014 13:29

The "Manière" of 1396 has been published twice (once by Jean gessler in 1934). It's atested in two groups of mss. I simplify—

A
British Library Harley 3988, ff 1-26
Cambridge Univ Library Dd 12.23, ff 67-87
Oxford, All Souls College 182, 305-16, 372-3

B
BL Addit 17716, ff 106-111

The best ms is the Cambridge one.But the scene with the baker's apprentice is in BL-H, Oxford, and Cambridge.
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby admin » 06 Mar 2014 08:05

Great, many thanks. 8)
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby Thearos » 06 Mar 2014 13:38

The split palm does sound like a hand parry…
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby Ariella Elema » 24 Mar 2014 18:13

The version in MS Harley 3988 was edited in the nineteenth century. You can download it from archive.org and Google Books. https://archive.org/details/lamaniredelanga00frangoog
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby Thearos » 25 Mar 2014 23:04

The baker story is p. 396
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Postby Ulrich von L...n » 26 Mar 2014 08:31

Fascinating!
Vraiement, sire, si comme je me juai a(u) l'espeie de deux mains avecque un de mes compaingnons, il me donna un tiel horion sur la main droite qu'il le fendist tout parmy la peaulme jusques a l'os. Or veiez vous la proef qu'il n'est pas mençonge ce que je vous die.

The above text is a little bit mangled by OCR, but it seems that the guy received a heavy (uncontrolled?) blow on his right hand. However it is difficult to imagine how his palm was injured. I could understand a serious - "jusques au os" - injury on his backhand, but the palm?
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby OK » 26 Mar 2014 12:26

Half-swording
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby MEversbergII » 26 Mar 2014 21:20

Flinching. Or a botched grapple.

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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby Thearos » 28 Mar 2014 11:50

It was the result of a blow. The guy raised his open hand into a blow ? It's a "defense injury" ?
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Re: 1396 source for sword play and injured hands

Postby admin » 28 Mar 2014 12:35

I've seen people get hit on the inside of the hand when parrying, but also remember that with longswords the hands open and close quite a bit in various techniques.
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