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Young Henry VIII fighting in the barriers in Spain

PostPosted: 10 Oct 2008 15:43
by admin
The King of England amuses himself almost every day of the week with running the ring, and with jousts and tournaments on foot, in which one single person fights with an appointed adversary. Two days in the week are consecrated to this kind of tournament, which is to continue till the Feast of St. John, and which is instituted in imitation of Amadis and Lanzilote, and other knights of olden times, of whom so much is written in books. The combatants are clad in breast plates, and wear a particular kind of helmet. They use lances of fourteen hands breadth long, with blunt iron points. They throw these lances at one another, and fight afterwards with two-handed swords, each of the combatants dealing twelve strokes. They are separated from one another by a barrier which reaches up to the girdle, in order to prevent them from seizing one another and wrestling. There are many young men who excel in this kind of warfare, but the most conspicuous amongst them all, the most assiduous, and the most interested in the combats is the King himself, who never omits being present at them.


From: 'Spain: 1510', Calendar of State Papers, Spain: Volume 2, 1509-1525 (1866), pp. 33-54.