Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Fiore dei Liberi and his treatises Fior di Battaglia/Flos Duellatorum c.1410.
Open to public view.

Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Isto » 21 Mar 2012 20:19

Hi,

Fiore says you can execute all seven strikes of the sword from Posta di Donna. That brings some questions to my mind.

How do you make rising blows (sottani) from Posta di Donna? I have seen some ways but I'm not fully convinced about them. Fiore says rising blows travel the same path as cleaving blows and ends in Posta Longa if you don't return with a cleaving blow. From low positions that's clear but from Posta di Donna it isn't.

Can you do all seven strikes from the right side?
Isto
Corporal
 
Posts: 43
Joined: 02 Jan 2012 19:49
Location: Finland

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Ran Pleasant » 21 Mar 2012 20:48

Isto wrote:How do you make rising blows (sottani) from Posta di Donna? I have seen some ways but I'm not fully convinced about them. Fiore says rising blows travel the same path as cleaving blows and ends in Posta Longa if you don't return with a cleaving blow. From low positions that's clear but from Posta di Donna it isn't.

Isto

I thought you had seen this in the thread on Bicorno. In the following video John Clements makes a number of rising blows that end in Bicorno.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmUqhrcSkY4&feature=results_main&playnext=1&list=PLA95D4F600472F3B0


Ran Pleasant
Ran Pleasant
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 159
Joined: 29 Aug 2011 21:55

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Joeli » 21 Mar 2012 22:13

Hello, I have a feeling that we might have met?

Take your source material and place yourself in the rear weighted posta with the description. As long as you follow the picture, you can strike true edge downward and false edge upward strikes, you just keep your sword arm loose. Pay attention to the pommel, crossguard and the tip and their placement in the drawing in relation to the fencer's body. You are holding the sword by the pommel with your left and your right arm should be very relaxed. A relaxed arm should be pretty free to move however you need to strike. I don't know how others feel, but striking in a steep angle seems easier from a rear weighted position to me.

The roverso mezzano is pretty cute, as you lift the sword over your head and strike from there. Don't sneer about it - some people practise such blows like zwerch duplieren for months before they can really use it. Also, the only problem, and a big mindfuck in the affair in how I would use the donna destra, is the roverso sottano. Don't define it in relation to your own body. Define it in relation to your opponent's. You need to accressere fora de strada before passing to create the necessary room for the attack, in other words, to create enough space between you and the center line so that you can strike an upwards blow towards the opponent's right side. If you fool around with the distance using the unweighted front foot position, and suddenly launch a sottano to the flank or the arm, you have a really succesfull opening attack.

BTW, the strikes Ran mentioned are pretty awesome too. I have fenced using those and managed to put some serious pressure on my partners.
User avatar
Joeli
2nd Lieutenant
 
Posts: 374
Joined: 18 Dec 2008 23:46
Location: Finland

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Isto » 14 Apr 2012 22:03

Ran Pleasant wrote:I thought you had seen this in the thread on Bicorno. In the following video John Clements makes a number of rising blows that end in Bicorno.


Those are cool strikes but not what Fiore describes in his book.

Fiore says clearly that sottani cuts are finished in Posta di Donna and therefore you can say he preferred of doing those with false edge of the sword. I think there is more proof for that claim in the Getty manuscript on the page 31 recto (according to the museum) where Fiore says (from Tom Leoni's translation):

"I am waiting for these three in this guard, Dente di Cinghiaro. I could wait in other guards as well - like left Posta di Donna, left Posta di Finestra - and still be able to defend as I would from Dente di Chingiaro."

Joeli wrote:Hello, I have a feeling that we might have met?


I think so too, in Lappeenranta couple of years ago, perhaps?

I have trained all seven strikes of the sword every evening for a few weeks now and little by little I have progressed. My roverso mezzano and roverso sottani cuts are still pretty clumsy from destra version of the Donna but I think I understand those now.

Posta di Donna is essential part of the Fiore's system and in my opinion many people do it or use it improperly. It's crucial to keep the point of the sword pointing forward in all variations of the posta if you want to make all described actions from it.
Last edited by Isto on 14 Apr 2012 23:24, edited 3 times in total.
Isto
Corporal
 
Posts: 43
Joined: 02 Jan 2012 19:49
Location: Finland

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Lyceum » 14 Apr 2012 22:22

And how would one keep point forward in PdD? Perhaps I'm missing something here? I wouldn't say I'm point forward and I can easily make all the strikes. Perhaps I'm just being slow? Any chance of a picture?
No language is justly studied merely as an aid to other purposes. It will in fact better serve other purposes, philological or historical, when it is studied for love, for itself"

Mind now changed...
User avatar
Lyceum
Field Marshal
 
Posts: 4207
Joined: 16 Nov 2007 00:02

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Isto » 15 Apr 2012 00:04

Lyceum wrote:And how would one keep point forward in PdD? Perhaps I'm missing something here? I wouldn't say I'm point forward and I can easily make all the strikes. Perhaps I'm just being slow? Any chance of a picture?


Well, not directly forward but diagonally forward at least (top row).

http://www.getty.edu/art/collections/im ... 349701.jpg

Blade of the sword is pointing directly forward in the left version of the Posta di Donna in the Getty version (lower right corner).

http://www.getty.edu/art/collections/im ... 350001.jpg

I have seen people doing PdD blade sideways or even pointing backwards. That's something else than Posta di Donna Fiore shows.

Why Fiore shows Posta di Donna as he shows? My guess is that it's somewhat optimized for doing what it's meant to do. Perhaps I was too sharp in my original statement. On the other hand you can make any action starting from any position if you have enough time :)

Doing Posta di Donna blade pointing as forward as possible gives you following benefits:

- Your hands are always safe behind your crossguard when you lift your arms over your head (for example when you thrust or strike roverso fendente from destra version of the PdD)
- Quick thrusts (by lifting your hands over your head, point of the blade is practically already on the line when you begin)
- Optimized timing between your hands and legs when striking with a passare (mandritto fendente from destra version of the PdD for example)

Or perhaps Fiore just wanted to stand out from the other masters by doing it that way, who knows...
Isto
Corporal
 
Posts: 43
Joined: 02 Jan 2012 19:49
Location: Finland

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby CPenney » 27 Aug 2012 04:23

Isto wrote:Hi,

Fiore says you can execute all seven strikes of the sword from Posta di Donna. That brings some questions to my mind.

How do you make rising blows (sottani) from Posta di Donna? I have seen some ways but I'm not fully convinced about them. Fiore says rising blows travel the same path as cleaving blows and ends in Posta Longa if you don't return with a cleaving blow. From low positions that's clear but from Posta di Donna it isn't.

Can you do all seven strikes from the right side?


Hi. I think the key to that statement is that Fiore cheats - he states that to make the thrust all he has to do is raise his arms over his head and then he can thrust (I believe he makes that qualifier in the sword-axe guard in the Getty). I interpret this line to mean that he makes a quick transfer into finestra and thrusts from there. I think that statement shows fairly plainly that Fiore can not be taken literally that he can throw all strikes in a direct single motion from the position he's holding.
Chris Penney
Ottawa Medieval Sword Guild
User avatar
CPenney
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 157
Joined: 01 Jan 2007 22:00
Location: Ottawa

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby admin » 27 Aug 2012 12:00

Yeah, I basically agree.
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

I like swords more than you.
User avatar
admin
Emperor
 
Posts: 35036
Joined: 13 Mar 2006 17:28
Location: Guildford, Surrey, England.

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Mark Lancaster » 27 Aug 2012 12:16

Quick one (not at a PC). Fiore only says you can do all 7 colpi against one of the PdD in the Getty (top right in both images above).

I don't think the thrust is after transition into Fenestra as this is too slow, but rather literally lifting the hands up to clear the head (sort of half way towards moving into Fenestra) and then thrusting.

Both Sotani blows are weak as the hands are high but useful, eg for entering under cover. The other blows are straight forward.
Mark Lancaster
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 198
Joined: 22 Jan 2008 00:54
Location: Norfolk

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby admin » 27 Aug 2012 12:50

The most problematic, IMO, is the false edge mezzani from the left.
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

I like swords more than you.
User avatar
admin
Emperor
 
Posts: 35036
Joined: 13 Mar 2006 17:28
Location: Guildford, Surrey, England.

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Mark Lancaster » 27 Aug 2012 14:14

Ah, we worked on this a lot. It may well be that it's true edge.

Tying in with the mezzani text, it might be true edge when left leg lead and false edge when right leg lead (cutting from the right/left body position rather than right/left sword position). This is still work in progress though.
Mark Lancaster
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 198
Joined: 22 Jan 2008 00:54
Location: Norfolk

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Bulot » 27 Aug 2012 15:05

Tying in with the mezzani text, it might be true edge when left leg lead and false edge when right leg lead (cutting from the right/left body position rather than right/left sword position). This is still work in progress though.


It's an interesting thought, but I don't really see how it fits. It would mean the player crosses his wrists in front of him every time he strikes a mezzano ?
User avatar
Bulot
Captain
 
Posts: 677
Joined: 17 Dec 2007 14:15
Location: Montreal, QC, Canada

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Mark Lancaster » 27 Aug 2012 16:09

Nearly/sort of. Try this .... take any left lead position (posta or make up your own, it doesn't matter). You can cut a true edge mezzani from your right without crossing hands no problem with 2h.

Same position try a false edge mezzani 2h on the reverse. Very difficult. Now try it true edge.

Finally play with this PdD and try the reverse both with the true and the false. I think you'll find the true edge to be the better (you might even find the false edge to be virtually impossible)

If this works as I hope/suspect then reread the mezzani colpi text and think body not sword. It makes for food for thought and PdD would not be in conflict.
Mark Lancaster
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 198
Joined: 22 Jan 2008 00:54
Location: Norfolk

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Motley » 27 Aug 2012 16:59

Mark Lancaster wrote:Nearly/sort of. Try this .... take any left lead position (posta or make up your own, it doesn't matter). You can cut a true edge mezzani from your right without crossing hands no problem with 2h.

Same position try a false edge mezzani 2h on the reverse. Very difficult. Now try it true edge.

Finally play with this PdD and try the reverse both with the true and the false. I think you'll find the true edge to be the better (you might even find the false edge to be virtually impossible)

If this works as I hope/suspect then reread the mezzani colpi text and think body not sword. It makes for food for thought and PdD would not be in conflict.


Sorry Mark, you are going to have to spell it out for me a bit more.

Dan.
Dan Sellars
Context is everything
User avatar
Motley
Lieutenant General
 
Posts: 2566
Joined: 20 Jan 2008 17:04
Location: Great White North

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Mark Lancaster » 27 Aug 2012 20:34

Dan,

Let me get off my mobile/tapatallk and I'll try to expand :)

Cheers

Mark
Mark Lancaster
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 198
Joined: 22 Jan 2008 00:54
Location: Norfolk

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby CPenney » 28 Aug 2012 00:06

I'm also curious about this exercise, but I will say that, given other instances of Fiore being what I'd call a little loose with some of his descriptions, that I'm totally comfortable with the idea that he didn't intend to throw all 7 strikes directly from the one PdD image where he makes the statement. I think it's just as reasonable that he was referring to PdD on either side. Of course, I have no proof of that :?
Chris Penney
Ottawa Medieval Sword Guild
User avatar
CPenney
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 157
Joined: 01 Jan 2007 22:00
Location: Ottawa

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Mark Lancaster » 28 Aug 2012 06:56

CPenney wrote:I'm also curious about this exercise, but I will say that, given other instances of Fiore being what I'd call a little loose with some of his descriptions, that I'm totally comfortable with the idea that he didn't intend to throw all 7 strikes directly from the one PdD image where he makes the statement. I think it's just as reasonable that he was referring to PdD on either side. Of course, I have no proof of that :?

I disagree with this. Fiore is very specific about actions from Posta and you can't do all 7 colpi from PdD senestra without dropping into a two (or three) time move.
Mark Lancaster
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 198
Joined: 22 Jan 2008 00:54
Location: Norfolk

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Mark Lancaster » 28 Aug 2012 07:16

Motley wrote:
Mark Lancaster wrote:Nearly/sort of. Try this .... take any left lead position (posta or make up your own, it doesn't matter). You can cut a true edge mezzani from your right without crossing hands no problem with 2h.

Same position try a false edge mezzani 2h on the reverse. Very difficult. Now try it true edge.

Finally play with this PdD and try the reverse both with the true and the false. I think you'll find the true edge to be the better (you might even find the false edge to be virtually impossible)

If this works as I hope/suspect then reread the mezzani colpi text and think body not sword. It makes for food for thought and PdD would not be in conflict.


Sorry Mark, you are going to have to spell it out for me a bit more.

Dan.

Dan,

I should have said "left leg lead" at the start.

Take up the PdD from above and you can cut mezzano from your right to the player's left easily with the true edge. The reverse mezzano, though, is also easiest true edge (in fact it's the only practical way to cut as a false edge just doesn't work). This is what Matt was concerned about as it goes against the write up for mezzani.

You can repeat the mezzani cuts from any practical position that has a left leg lead and you should find that it is best true edge for both the normal and reverse cuts. The false edge reverse cut doesn't work.

Going back to the mezzani text, it may mean that he's not talking about the "side" that the sword is striking but the side that the sword is starting from. On the above this would mean that all mezzani cuts that start from the right (due to the left leg lead) are true edge.

As I say ... work in progress :)
Mark Lancaster
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 198
Joined: 22 Jan 2008 00:54
Location: Norfolk

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby CPenney » 28 Aug 2012 12:22

Mark Lancaster wrote:
CPenney wrote:I'm also curious about this exercise, but I will say that, given other instances of Fiore being what I'd call a little loose with some of his descriptions, that I'm totally comfortable with the idea that he didn't intend to throw all 7 strikes directly from the one PdD image where he makes the statement. I think it's just as reasonable that he was referring to PdD on either side. Of course, I have no proof of that :?

I disagree with this. Fiore is very specific about actions from Posta and you can't do all 7 colpi from PdD senestra without dropping into a two (or three) time move.


I will acknowledge that I haven't spent a lot of time trying to do all seven blows from right PdD, but I meant that all seven blows might come from both poste together (i.e. not seven blows from each). And from right PdD Fiore already acknowledges one two-time move (the thrust).
Chris Penney
Ottawa Medieval Sword Guild
User avatar
CPenney
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 157
Joined: 01 Jan 2007 22:00
Location: Ottawa

Re: Posta di Donna and all seven strikes of the sword

Postby Motley » 28 Aug 2012 12:54

Mark, thanks for the extra details, are you assuming any footwork with the strikes or just cutting?

Is there anything in the language of the passage that would lead to this interpretation?

Cheers,
Dan.
Dan Sellars
Context is everything
User avatar
Motley
Lieutenant General
 
Posts: 2566
Joined: 20 Jan 2008 17:04
Location: Great White North

Next

Return to Fiore dei Liberi

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest