Bicorno

Fiore dei Liberi and his treatises Fior di Battaglia/Flos Duellatorum c.1410.
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Re: Bicorno

Postby Mark Lancaster » 11 Oct 2012 18:11

Just to lob in a different view.

Our group and a few others have moved away from the anvil theory as that is dictating form/use.

Personally I use it straight down the middle at the angles shown. Works really nice and there are some lovely moves for entering bicornio.
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Re: Bicorno

Postby CPenney » 12 Oct 2012 01:11

John H wrote:Precisely, without this you thrust in a middle guard and have no defense while you thrust.


Not that this might be a bad way to do it, but considering that there are three guards described by Fiore as staying in the middle, there is certainly no martial reason that it cannot be straight on the centreline, as described in the text.

I wonder if the bicorno name is simply meant to imply that the sword should be held with the flat up, so that the quillions point to either side, like the anvil. Other than that, I don't think there is any particular evidence for the grip of the sword being held to one side or the other.

Plus, I think it's suposed to be held lower than it's drawn (i.e. so your forearms are parallel to the ground).
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Re: Bicorno

Postby admin » 12 Oct 2012 10:35

Given that there are 5 pages of discussion on Bichorno I'd say that the only thing that is clear about it is that it is unclear :).

I tend to more or less ignore the guard. As the text says, it does the same stuff as the other instabile guards. What you do from the guards is far more important than the guards themselves anyway. You don't win fights by standing in a guard.
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Re: Bicorno

Postby Isto » 16 Oct 2012 15:02

admin wrote: As the text says, it does the same stuff as the other instabile guards.


The unifying factor between all instabile guards is that the sword is not well supported. One could say that in stabile guards a man can move but the sword stays pretty much stationary relative to its user. In instabile guards the sword also moves.

If thought that way it means the drawings of the instabile guards just show us the principle of how to hold a sword in different ways enabling it to move and deceive the opponent. For some reason some guards represented in the Getty manuscript are in their most extreme form, like in Posta Frontale the sword is as left as it can be and in Bicorno the sword is as right as it can be.

Posta Longa: Your hands are extended and the blade points forward. The point of the blade moves and you can e.g. do feints.

Posta di Finestra: Your hands are withdrawn and the blade points forward. You can e.g. deceive the opponent by changing the side.

Posta Frontale: Your hands are in front of you and the blade points upward. You can move your sword in horizontal axis.

Posta di Bicorno: Your hands are in front of you and the blade points forward. The pommel of your sword is on the same level or above of your right forearm. You can move your sword in horizontal axis and perhaps even in vertical axis but the point of the sword stays on the centerline.

My drawing in the previous page shows two extremes of Bicorno in horizontal axis, not different versions of Bicorno, because there is no different versions, it's instabile and on the move.

Does these thoughts make any sense?
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Re: Bicorno

Postby Motley » 16 Oct 2012 15:50

Hi Isto,

I have been thinking about this on and off for a while now. I have had some more thoughts on this recently and I think that I maybe thinking along similar lines to you.

In my current thinking with Bicorno in the Getty being left foot forward and it the other Ms' right foot forward I think it explains the differences in how the posta is drawn between the different Ms. In the Getty it is held on the right*, in the others on the left.

I see that Posta Bicorno has a relationship to Posta Finestra, just that instead of the palm facing out (when on the right) it now faces in and the left hand is on the inside. Basically if you are in right Finestra just play with moving the left hand to the inside of the forearm and back while turning the body, then do something similar on the other side. In thinking like this it can also be viewed as a high withdrawn Posta Longa on each side.

As to why the left hand seems to be reversed in the Getty images I think that is quite possible to do as you transition and allows a more comfortable thrust, I find with my sword (Albion Liechtenauer) that the hilt is a tad long to make this easy though.

It is kind of hard to explain in text, I tried with a friend yesterday and he didn't quite get it, when I later showed him I saw what I was on about. Such is the nature of this medium.

This is the only way I have been able to rationalise to myself the discrepancies between the way Posta Bicorno is drawn. Also I think that from these positions you can do the stuff it says about Post Longa and I think there is an aspect of being able to overbind the opponents sword hence the comments about staying in the middle. I have not actually played with it much yet though, so most of my ideas here are more theoretical in nature.

Ultimately though I tend to agree with Matt, it is pretty unclear and everyone is able to argue their own pet theories, hence we get long threads like this with no consensus. This thinking is working for me for now though.

Regards,
Dan.

*I think it has to be, due to how the left forearm is drawn.
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Re: Bicorno

Postby Colin F. » 16 Oct 2012 20:36

admin wrote:Given that there are 5 pages of discussion on Bichorno I'd say that the only thing that is clear about it is that it is unclear.


Kind of like a Krumphau then... ;-)
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Re: Bicorno

Postby Michael Chidester » 17 Oct 2012 03:59

Colin F. wrote:
admin wrote:Given that there are 5 pages of discussion on Bichorno I'd say that the only thing that is clear about it is that it is unclear.

Kind of like a Krumphau then... ;-)

Complete with Ran posting an interpretation that doesn't match the text and then declaring the mystery solved. :twisted:
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Re: Bicorno

Postby admin » 17 Oct 2012 11:05

The difference being that the krumpahu is supposed to be important to understanding Liechtenauer's system, whereas Bichorno seems to be fairly unimportant, based on the evidence we have.
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Re: Bicorno

Postby CPenney » 18 Oct 2012 12:41

Motley wrote:
In my current thinking with Bicorno in the Getty being left foot forward and it the other Ms' right foot forward I think it explains the differences in how the posta is drawn between the different Ms. In the Getty it is held on the right*, in the others on the left.


Hi, Dan.

As I've mentioned in other threads, I'm not a big believer in relying on minute details of the drawings to give us such precise details on positioning, but if we look at the textual evidence, FIore is unambiguous that the guard stands in the middle, similar to how he describes other guards.

The introductory text in the Getty states that posta longa, breve and middle iron door "stand in point" The description of middle iron door further clarifies this, saying that it "stands in the middle". The other guard that Fiore describes the same way (at least in the Getty; it is not found anywhere else) is middle boar's tooth, which also stands in the middle. Consistently with these, Fiore says bicorno "stands with the point in the middle of the path".

None of these descriptions use *identical* phraseology, but they all commonly use the terms "stand" "point" and "middle". To argue that bicorno doesn't stand in the middle is to ignore what Fiore tells us.
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Re: Bicorno

Postby Michael Chidester » 18 Oct 2012 13:17

The point in the middle does not mean (even by implication) the hands in the middle. There are a number of different hand positions which all share the claim of heeding " what Fiore tells us".
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Re: Bicorno

Postby CPenney » 18 Oct 2012 22:17

That's absolutely possible, but that does not constitute proof.
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Re: Bicorno

Postby Risto R » 21 Nov 2014 12:30

What would your arguments be against the idea that this is bicorno? Except that it's presented in the video as part of the Lichtenauer tradition.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6loG6Ly-bQ
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Re: Bicorno

Postby Colin Richards » 10 Dec 2014 15:14

Hi Folks,

I now have an interpretation of Bicorno that fit all the facts and pictures. i will be publishing a vidoe on it early next year. I was shown a picture from a treatises that I forget the name of, by Alex Kiermayer which solved all my questions in about one minute.

Still have not perfected anything in sparring yet but I am not practising that at the moment.
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