The Italians know how to party... Early reenactment

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Roger N
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The Italians know how to party... Early reenactment

Post by Roger N » Thu May 20, 2010 11:37 am

I am currently looking into the topic of chivalric ideals and how it has been lifted
ever since the late middle ages, no matter how brutal warfare was in reality. (In relation
to this I am reading a new book entitled "By Sword and Fire: Cruelty and Atrocity in Medieval
Warfare" by Sean McGlynn, which is an interesting read).

Hema/SCA/Reenactment are all expressions, although in quite different ways, of an interest
in times where swords were important tools of fighting, and as such it has been expressed
with numerous examples through out time. Some focus more on the ideals, some on the dress
and some on the fighting. This is nothing new, it appears.

In Italy in particular, there has been a strong interest in displaying historical events and in
keeping certain traditions alive. Bologna, Venice, Sienna and Florence all have festivities that
celebrate traditions that go all the way to the Middle Ages.

Likewise large parts of Europe had a strong surge of interest in the old days, with the Romanticism.
The Eglinton Tournament of 1839 is a prime example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eglinton_T ... nt_of_1839
and drew a crowd of 100,000 spectators.

Hutton and Castle can perhaps also be considered part of this.

I will try to expand on this topic when I have a little more time, but meanwhile, here are a few links,
clips and images.

http://www.thearma.org/essays/BridgeWars.htm
http://atlasobscura.com/place/ponte-dei ... e-of-fists
http://www.anderssonart.com/perfor/porc ... /BOLOP.HTM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WsRqSNSjy3E
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gfSXmALnFns
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEAy-NGb66o
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAutFtg_G6U

Image
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Roger Norling

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Re: The Italians know how to party...

Post by Roger N » Thu May 20, 2010 11:44 am

And here are a few images of Hutton. Just for fun. :)
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Roger Norling

Quarterstaff instructor
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Re: The Italians know how to party... Early reenactment

Post by Roger N » Thu May 20, 2010 1:26 pm

And of course the art of duelling never really ceases to exist until the 60's.

Also, Mensur appears to be what is left of the fechtschulen, as they came to
be more associated with the universities. At least this is my current impression.

Here is an image from 1497 of students practicing early mensuren, or just messing
about, at the Erfurt University.
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Re: The Italians know how to party... Early reenactment

Post by Kevin Maurer » Thu May 20, 2010 3:06 pm

Roger, Outstanding images! Thanks, especially those from Hutton, with the BlossSchwerts.
I have often contended that the Modern re-enactors or SCA people, or just anyone who seeks to glorify the
heritage of old, are practicing a Historically accurate portion of these Original Arts. We know from history that the Spiel leute or Play people
were entertainers who travelled around Europe and entertained, much of this came in the form of Martial Games or Dances, this can be
traced to early Italy. And in early Renn. in germany it was practiced in conjunction with the Fechtschulen.
It was a part of the festivities. So i feel that those today who seek to create period impressions, or reenact the
days of old, are in keeping with Historic Tradition. We who practice these Arts in a Martial manner, with intent, often
overlook this, and some today even belittle the efforts of reenactors. This is a wrong philosophy, IMO based on Modern prejudices.
However, many of the SCA people are not aware that what they are doing is just Play. Many of them believe they are somehow
recreating the martial Arts. And therein lies the dilemma for those who study and practice Swordmanship with intent. But in the end,
I believe the Public who attends these Renn Faires or reenactments, are becoming more aware of this division.
As the HEMA community grows, and the understandings are more widely accepted, the differences become obvious.
I dream of the day when there is an event that includes all the festivities we know existed in an original Event. Imagine that,
a reenactment with performers, Games, and the like, that culminates with a Fechtschule, now that would be period Correct!
Great Post Roger, thanks
Kevin
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Re: The Italians know how to party... Early reenactment

Post by Roger N » Thu May 20, 2010 3:50 pm

Thanks for the kind comments! :)

I completely agree with you. And there are quite a few interesting details in the Bologna images as well,
like the stick fighting in 1697, which uses sticks that resemble Jogo do Pau-sticks...

Oh, and look at the early Jackasses slapping each other with geese in 1710. Or are they fighting for it? :D
Reminds me of a curious game mentioned in the "By Sword and Fire"-book, where young men used to nail cats
alive to a tree and compete in trying to head butt it... An early form of basket ball, if you will.
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Re: The Italians know how to party... Early reenactment

Post by Shay Roberts » Thu May 20, 2010 6:59 pm

Pretty wild stuff! I like the turtlemen fighting. Their version of a monster movie.
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Re: The Italians know how to party... Early reenactment

Post by Roger N » Fri May 21, 2010 1:35 pm

In addition to the Hutton images above, I found this picture showing "Ladie's Night Bath Club Paget Entertainment"
from 1899. Notice the two longsworders in the centre... And Bartitsu on the top right. :)

I just bought this print and will frame it as soon as I get it, although I bet I will only be allowed to hang in that special
room where I brush my teeth... ;)
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Re: The Italians know how to party... Early reenactment

Post by Roger N » Wed Sep 01, 2010 7:42 am

Thought I'd add a link to a thread on German carnevals, just to connect the dots.

viewtopic.php?f=91&t=346&p=705#p705
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