The Knightly Art of Battle by Ken Mondschein

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This volume offers an intriguing glimpse into the world of late medieval martial arts, from wrestling to fencing with the longsword to the subtle tricks that could be employed when jousting on horseback. Using superb details of lively pen drawings highlighted with gold leaf, the book features some of the most interesting selections from Fior di Battaglia (The Flower of Battle), a manuscript by the renowned Italian fencing master Fiore dei Liberi depicting the knightly arts of fighting with swords, daggers, and polearms, on foot and on horseback, and in and out of armor.  

The copy in the collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum, created in the early fifteenth century, is the finest and most complete manuscript to survive. Offering detailed visual documentation of Fiore’s techniques coupled with the author’s genius for explaining sophisticated methods of offense and defense, the manuscript provides a comprehensive record of the skills by which men lived and died in the Middle Ages. Included are an introductory commentary, brief explanations of positions and techniques, and fascinating details about medieval arms and armor. 

About Ken Mondschein

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Ken Mondschein is a research fellow and historical fencing instructor at the Higgins Armory Museum, teaches history at the American International College in Springfield, MA, and is a visiting fellow at the Center for Renaissance Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
Published October 25, 2011 by J. Paul Getty Museum. 128 pages
Genres: History, Arts & Photography, Sports & Outdoors.

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