Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Liechtenauer lineage and related sources (eg. Sigmund Ringeck, Peter von Danzig, Paulus Kal, Hans Talhoffer), interpretation and practice. Open to public view.

Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Michael Chidester » 01 Oct 2011 06:42

Okay, my friends, the long-awaited day has finally come. The complete works of Paulus Hector Mair, insofar as they are currently available to the public, are now available on Wiktenauer. Strangely, of all of Mair's work it's the the Sickle section that's received the most attention.


That said, Opus Amplissimum de Arte Athletica (or Wiktenauer 0.1, 0.2, and 0.3, as I like to call them) is a massive compilation with little or no original content. Most of the contents of these three texts appear on the pages of the masters that wrote them, with only the small portion whose origins we haven't determined being listed on Mair's page itself. Therefore, you may also wish to visit the following pages:


For the complete table of contents, go to the manual pages:


Enjoy. I've stared at these images for so many hours now that I don't think I can look at this manual again for a while.
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Megalophias » 01 Oct 2011 22:05

Holy wow that must have been an epic amount of work Mike! Thank you, this is great! Wish I knew Latin.
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Ran Pleasant » 03 Nov 2011 17:53

To any Geman speakers

In the rapier section Plate 7 is titled "Falling Over with a Krumb against a Thrust". Is "Krumb" the same as "Krump"?

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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Wolfgang Ritter » 03 Nov 2011 19:24

Ran Pleasant wrote:To any Geman speakers

In the rapier section Plate 7 is titled "Falling Over with a Krumb against a Thrust". Is "Krumb" the same as "Krump"?

Ran

Without having read the rapier section I'd say yes. There were quite some variations in written german, even in the 16th century. I can't think of any other meaning as the well known hidden strike "Krump".
Literally Krump means just "krumm" = crooked, regarding the direction of the cut in correlation with the body-movement.
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Ran Pleasant » 03 Nov 2011 19:38

Wolfgang Ritter wrote:Without having read the rapier section I'd say yes.


Thanks!

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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby PH BAS » 03 Nov 2011 23:20

Salutem,

just for remember : I have finished today the complete retranscription of the MS Dresd.C.94 for the dagger, wrestling, sword, sword dagger and buckler, etc. I begin the axe's section tomorrow...

The Ms Dresd.C.93' s retranscription is available here : http://reght.wordpress.com/retranscript ... ctor-mair/

So begin this boring work a second time is maybe useless...

but thanks for this work.


Just one question :

What are exactly the connexions between Clerus Lutegerus and the buckler's section ?
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Michael Chidester » 03 Nov 2011 23:42

PH BAS wrote:What are exactly the connexions between Clerus Lutegerus and the buckler's section ?

There's a long discussion of it here: http://hemaalliance.com/discussion/view ... =20&t=1121 and an overview here: http://wiktenauer.com/wiki/Clerus_Lutegerus

Essentially, it is now believed that Mair's sword and buckler plays, as well as those in a few other manuscripts, originated with several pages that were removed from the MS I.33 shortly after it was written.
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby PH BAS » 04 Nov 2011 13:46

Thank's !
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Ran Pleasant » 30 Nov 2011 06:11

Michael Chidester wrote:Essentially, it is now believed that Mair's sword and buckler plays, as well as those in a few other manuscripts, originated with several pages that were removed from the MS I.33 shortly after it was written.


A very interesting hypothesis. Beyound a few images that look similar, such as grabbing the adversary's blade, etc., what solid information supports the hypothesis?

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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Michael Chidester » 30 Nov 2011 06:20

You'll find that information in the links I provided. It's based primarily on analysis of the artwork, timelines, and the physical characteristics on the I.33 manuscript, not a technical analysis of the plays. That said, the fact that, as Brian Hunt demonstrated several years ago in an internal ARMA document, the plays are all technically consistent with the I.33 lends additional support.
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Herbert » 30 Nov 2011 07:39

I would say that the techniques in Mair are inspired by the I.33 but they are certainly no "lost techniques" from the I.33.
The whole concept only superficially mirrors the I.33. If you know the I.33 intimately the differences will just scream in your face.

I am totally convinced that they - as said - may be inspired by the I.33 but are NOT a part of I.33 as such.

Michael Chidester wrote:That said, the fact that, as Brian Hunt demonstrated several years ago in an internal ARMA document, the plays are all technically consistent with the I.33 lends additional support.

I most strongly disagree here. They are everything BUT consistent with the I.33.

If needed I can give examples.

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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Michael Chidester » 30 Nov 2011 08:24

Ah, let me be clearer. I don't think Mair's text has any connection to the I.33. I think he added his own interpretation to what were previously uncaptioned illustrations, as was his custom. I cannot speak to whether Mair's interpretations are correct or not--that's not my area of study. Brian Hunt, as devoted a researcher of the I.33 as anyone I know of, judged them consistent with the Priest's system on some level. Craig Shackleton has also been working with them this year, though I haven't touched base with him to see what his findings are in a while.

The basic line of reasoning here is that the manuscript itself shows evidence of pages being cut out of the text at some point in its history. These are the "lost pages" (and I keep forgetting to try to get in contact with Cinato and ask if he was able to determine exactly how many pages are missing--the 30 known plays would be 8 folia, but there may have been more initially). This set of pages subsequently made its way to various collectors including Sollinger and Mair, both of whom reproduced them (preserving details like the robes, the pointed gloves, the shape of the bucklers, the hooded Walpurgis, the posture of the fencers, etc.). These details can't be explained by direct I.33 influence since it wasn't liberated from its monastic home until 1552, while these reproductions occurred between 1510 and 1545. (Aside from that, only a couple of the plays actually resemble illustrations in the current I.33.) For whatever reason, the original text was not preserved when these copies were made--perhaps, like the scribe of the Cod.Guelf.125.16.Extrav would later admit in the early 1600s, they simply found the I.33 script too messy to decipher. Alternatively, they could certainly have been copied without the text at some point during the 15th century, and this textless copy could have been the source of the 16th century duplications. In either case, we end up with Mair in possession of illustrations from the I.33 without any explanation of what they mean. He then applied his own martial arts expertise to interpreting them.
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Herbert » 30 Nov 2011 09:21

Michael Chidester wrote:I don't think Mair's text has any connection to the I.33. I think he added his own interpretation to what were previously uncaptioned illustrations, as was his custom.
[…]
In either case, we end up with Mair in possession of illustrations from the I.33 without any explanation of what they mean. He then applied his own martial arts expertise to interpreting them.

Now, that makes much more sense.


Michael Chidester wrote:Brian Hunt, as devoted a researcher of the I.33 as anyone I know of, judged them consistent with the Priest's system on some level.

To my knowledge they are only superficially related to the system of I.33.
It depends on the "level" that Brian spoke of.


Michael Chidester wrote:
both of whom reproduced them (preserving details like the robes, the pointed gloves, the shape of the bucklers, the hooded Walpurgis, the posture of the fencers, etc.).

Just as a side note. Walpurgis is never hooded in the I.33.

all the best

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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Michael Chidester » 30 Nov 2011 09:27

Herbert wrote:Just as a side note. Walpurgis is never hooded in the I.33.

That's true. I like to imagine that the hooded student was Walpurgis the whole time, and merely removed her hood and revealed herself on the last folio. :) I should have said "the hooded scholar" to be more clear.
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Herbert » 30 Nov 2011 10:20

Michael Chidester wrote:
Herbert wrote:Just as a side note. Walpurgis is never hooded in the I.33.

That's true. I like to imagine that the hooded student was Walpurgis the whole time, and merely removed her hood and revealed herself on the last folio. :) I should have said "the hooded scholar" to be more clear.

I like the thought :D
I do think however it is unlikely. For example look at the front neckline of the garment. Still, nice thought.

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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Ran Pleasant » 30 Nov 2011 17:33

Herbert wrote:The whole concept only superficially mirrors the I.33. If you know the I.33 intimately the differences will just scream in your face.

Screams indeed! A core teaching of I.33 is that a skilled fighter will bind with his sword, Shield-Strike against the adversary's hands/hilt, and then attack (cut or thrust). I.33 tells us that it is the common fenser who attacks without a shield-strike. Yet Mair repeatedly instructs one to receive a blow on the shield rather than binding with the sword. In short, Mair is teaching common fensing. Therefore, to a degree I find what Mair teaches to be antithetical to what I.33 teaches.

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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Keith P. Myers » 02 Dec 2011 00:13

Mair's Sword & Buckler section is directly preceded by his section on the Rappier and they are numbered as one section. I think Michael is right is saying that Mair was working with illustrations only and putting his own interpretations to them. I also think his interpretations were heavily influenced by his understanding of the Rappier. Thus he describes more thrusting than typically seen in the I.33 "style" and neglects the shield-strikes as Ran pointed out. I'd really like to know why the Sword & Buckler and the use of the arming sword does not seem to have been preserved in the German traditions of the 15th & 16th centuries. Granted, Talhoeffer shows some of his Messer technique with an arming sword and the Messer was likely used pretty much as an arming sword would be used. But given that the Sword & Buckler and the arming sword were so common in prior centuries, where did they go? :shock:

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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Herbert » 02 Dec 2011 08:05

Keith P. Myers wrote:But given that the Sword & Buckler and the arming sword were so common in prior centuries, where did they go? :shock:

We have the Lignitzer stuff, the Talhoffer and the Kal sword and buckler techniques. But they are all a handful techniques. One has the feeling they have been thrown in for the sake of completion only. Mair and Wilhalm are only poor copies anyway.
So where have they gone? Either they fell out of fashion or there are a lot of fencing books covering these but they haven't survived.

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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Michael Chidester » 02 Dec 2011 08:39

Especially curious is its omission by Meyer. Even if it had fallen out of style in Germany by Meyer's time, he clearly had access to the treatise of Liegniczer (copied into his Rostock manuscript). Furthermore, we know he traveled to Italy to learn foreign arts and the buckler was very much part of the Bolognese teachings. He was therefore certainly exposed to it, both in Germany and Italy. Why then did he leave it out of his teachings?
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Re: Paulus Hector Mair on Wiktenauer

Postby Herbert » 02 Dec 2011 08:56

And sword and buckler was definitely in use. We have quite some pictorial evidence for the 15th and also the 16th century. Also a lot of existing bucklers in museums are dated to this period as well.

So, indeed, where are the techniques?

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