Time cut or counter?

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Time cut or counter?

Postby Beelzebubble » 05 Nov 2018 19:31

Dear all,

I'm a Hema sabrist. I've been reading Hutton's treatises; my club doesn't use him really, but I find his works very interesting. I wonder, though:

What is the true difference between a time cut and a counter? Isn't a counter just a time cut done a little later in the "tempo" of the attack? In "Cold Steel", Hutton says "not to confound..." the two terms, but they seem very related... He explains "time cut" very well, but doesn't really talk about the counter (apart from mentioning on p93 that "it is an attack done without parrying or slipping", but... a time cut is also without parrying and slipping... so it remains confusing).

Can anyone help me with this "academic" topic?

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Postby Ulrich von L...n » 09 Nov 2018 10:20

"What is the true difference between a time cut and a counter?"

Let's try to clarify.

Time hit

Your opponent makes a mistake, e.g. carelessly changing from one guard to another guard, and also the distance is right for your attack. Basically this is a physical tempo = your opponent has started an non-attacking movement with his limb (arm, leg), but not finished yet. This is the best moment for your cut. Naturally a time hit could be executed during a so-called psychological tempo, when you observe that
the constant alertness of your opponent has decreased a bit, and you attack immediately, hoping that a mentally tired opponent won't be able to parry your attack.

Unfinished non-attacking movement of your opponent, your attack.


Your opponent attacks in a careless way (too slowly, with wide, unnecessary movements), then you - "without any effort to parry or slip" his attack - cut his arm, for example. AFAIK earlier - somewhere 1920-30s - even in sport fencing, after a successful counter you had to parry (slip) the original incoming attack in order to receive a point for your action.

Unfinished attacking movement of your opponent, your attack.
Emil Barta
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Ulrich von L...n
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