The Martial Arts of Renaissance Europe
 
 


or
Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering
Sell Us Your Item
For a $12.50 Gift Card
Trade in
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Tell the Publisher!
I'd like to read this book on Kindle

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

The Martial Arts of Renaissance Europe [Hardcover]

Sydney Anglo
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

List Price: $65.00
Price: $58.50 & FREE Shipping. Details
You Save: $6.50 (10%)
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Want it Monday, Dec. 22? Choose One-Day Shipping at checkout. Details
12 Days of Deals in Books

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Hardcover $58.50  
Paperback --  
Best Books of the Year
Best Books of 2014
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for 2014's Best Books of the Year in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.

Book Description

August 11, 2000
Balletic homicide on the duelling field; stabbing and wrestling in tavern brawls; deceits and brutalities in street affrays; mounted encounters by armoured knights locked in desperate hand-to-hand combat - these were the martial arts of Renaissance Europe. In this book Sydney Anglo, a leading historian of the Renaissance and its symbolism, provides the first complete study of the martial arts from the late fifteenth to the late seventeenth centuries. The twentieth century has been captivated by oriental martial arts and their roots within Eastern societies. Yet the West too, as Anglo shows, developed its own styles of ritualised combat, similarly linked to contemporary social and scientific concerns. During the Renaissance physical exercise was regarded as central to the education of knights and gentlemen. Soldiers wielded a variety of weapons on the battlefield, and it was normal for civilians to carry swords and know how to use them. In schools across the continent, professional masters-of-arms were the artists who taught the lethal skills necessary to survive in a society where violence was endemic and life cheap. These ancient masters-of-arms, anxious to advertise their skills and record them for posterity, have left a wealth of evidence to reconstruct and illustrate their arts - much of it used here for the first time: detailed scholarly treatises, sketches by jobbing artists or magnificent images by D|rer and Cranach, descriptions of real combat, and an abundance of weapons and armour. With copious and precise illustration, Anglo explains the significance of martial arts in Renaissance education and everyday life. His book provides the fullest illustrated account of the social implications of one-to-one combat training.

Special Offers and Product Promotions


Frequently Bought Together

The Martial Arts of Renaissance Europe + Codex Wallerstein: A Medieval Fighting Book from the Fifteenth Century on the Longsword, Falchion, Dagger, and Wrestling
Price for both: $87.76

Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Review

"Fascinating." -- Globe and Mail

From the Inside Flap

Mounted encounters by armored knights locked in desperate hand-to- hand combat, stabbing and wrestling in tavern brawls, deceits and brutalities in street affrays, balletic homicide on the dueling field-these were the martial arts of Renaissance Europe. In this extensively illustrated book Sydney Anglo, a leading historian of the Renaissance and its symbolism, provides the first complete study of the martial arts from the late fifteenth to the late seventeenth century. He explains the significance of martial arts in Renaissance education and everyday life and offers a full account of the social implications of one-to-one combat training.Like the martial arts of Eastern societies, ritualized combat in the West was linked to contemporary social and scientific concerns, Anglo shows. During the Renaissance, physical exercise was regarded as central to the education of knights and gentlemen. Soldiers wielded a variety of weapons on the battlefield, and it was normal for civilians to carry swords and know how to use them. In schools across the continent, professional masters-of-arms taught the skills necessary to survive in a society where violence was endemic and life cheap. Anglo draws on a wealth of evidence-from detailed treatises and sketches by jobbing artists to magnificent images by Dürer and Cranach and descriptions of real combat, weapons and armor-to reconstruct and illustrate the arts taught by these ancient masters-at-arms.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 396 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press; First Edition edition (August 11, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300083521
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300083521
  • Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 7.9 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #455,470 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A profound and valuable contribution November 8, 2000
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Eagerly awaited by historic combat enhusiasts of all persuasions for two years, the pre-release buzz surrounding this work -- characterized by expectant suspense on the one hand and tacky name dropping and tail-wagging subservience on the other -- has turned out not only to be warranted but justified.
Sydney Anglo plunges the reader into a hidden world of combat activity whose presentation has no equal by virtue of its sheer scope and erudite analysis. Lavish illustrations taken from some of the most popular and some of the rarest fighting manuals of renaissance Europe combine with carefully documented and annotated critical commentary to produce a work unparalleled in the field.
The thorough academic approach, combined with Anglo's intelligent and at times humorous personal style, is providing a backbone of respectability and credibility to a subject matter that frequently does its darndest to self-implode any claims to being taken seriously by overvaluing the emotionally affirmative needs of some modern practitioners.
Of course, this book is no How-to-Manual. It does not contain detailed analysis of individual techniqes. Nor does it quite answer the question in which specific combative scenarios the arts summarized under the modern Anglo-American pop culture handle "Martial Arts" were applied. (This particular aspect of mainly legal and extra-legal history might make for a book in itself.)
But that's not the point.
Short on brawn and long on brains, Anglo introduces us to the very core of these arts... the masters themselves... the way they thought... the methods they (and their graphic artists) employed to transmit complex ideas and sophisticated systems of ethics, philosophy, and physical skill to students, patrons, readers, and of course to us.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
57 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most important work on the subject in over 100 years September 8, 2000
Format:Hardcover
It would be no exaggeration to call this book the most important work on historical fencing and European martial arts in more than 100 years. With it Dr. Anglo establishes himself as the unquestioned modern expert on the subject of Medieval and Renaissance martial arts history. Dr. Anglo makes an airtight case that the skills described within historical European fighting texts must be properly studied as "martial arts", and not as the traditional view of merely "fencing" (in the modern sense of the word). For most all of its history "fencing" meant not just swordplay, but the armed skills of fighting with weapons and always included unarmed techniques.
At 384 pages and with more than 200 illustrations this is an immense treasure-trove for all those interested in swordsmanship and the history of European combat. Dr. Anglo begins his volume not with a "history of fencing", but with the documentation for "masters of arms" (or masters of defence) within European civilization from the 13th to the 17th centuries. His primary concern is how they created systems of notation to convey information about combat movement, the various ways they went about achieving this communication, and what they thought they were achieving as a result. He establishes that, fitting within the classic Western tradition of arts and letters, many masters of arms were purposely recording their martial teachings as literary works for the education of future students. He achieves a detailed task of putting the works of the masters of arms into their historical and social context while discussing the limitations of researching these texts. He also presents the material with frequent dry humor and appreciation for irony.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must for serious European martial artists December 27, 2001
Format:Hardcover
One of the greatest problems facing modern enthusiasts of our European martial history is the availability (or lack there of) of scholarly study from the viewpoint of the period in which these arts were practiced. Too often they are approached from a standpoint of their applications in sport fencing or stage combat. Anglo has tried very hard to separate himself from these ties and look at the arts from their position in history, and while he occasionally falls shy, in most instances he succeeds remarkably well.
As a practitioner of medieval combat I was pleased to see many of the theories and postulations many of us have espoused borne out and explained in a scholarly text. The case Anglo makes for a systematic basis for training well before the Renaissance is well stated and helps to legitimize the work reenactors are performing today. As others have stated, this is not a "how to" manual, but is rather an indispensable tool to assist in researching masters and understanding the environment in which these skills were used. I have informed all my students and friends in the field that this book needs to be in their collection. I am certain I will reference it many times in the future.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Reading August 3, 2002
Format:Hardcover
Anglo's groundbreaking work is definitely one of the most influential treatises on Renaissance combat ever written. Seldom does an author write so in depth and cover so much material.
Martial Arts of Renaissance Europe is fascinating from the first page; Anglo pens right toward the meat of the topic. Rather than reiterating what other authors have said and said again, Anglo only briefly mentions those sources widely available or quoted, instead preferring to bring light to those relatively unknown sources with which few are familiar, but which deserve much more acclaim. This book is not a light read by any standards; it should keep the most erudite of scholars busy for days. The further one reads into this book, the more one realizes he didn't know.
Anglo makes every effort to cram information into every page, but does so with the witty flair of a seasoned writer who knows how to keep his audience interested. He provides ample photographs, scans, copies, and illustrations to underscore his study of Renaissance fighting, but does not drown the reader in unnecessary artwork. He covers more facets of Renaissance martial arts than most other authors even mention, from the methods of instruction to the evolution of combat. Affording a separate chapter to each style of personal defense - swordsmanship, barefisted brawling, polearm use, and the like - Anglo opens up a door to history that has never been opened before, and many anxious scholars are graciously pouring through.
As he points out himself, the history of Renaissance martial arts is one that is very much neglected, both by historians and by martial artists. Historians generally shy away from warfare and fighting, and, apart from mentioning the outcome of a few major battles, barely acknowledge the existence of violence.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic book for reference
A very dense overview of the fighting styles of renaissance.
Published 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible book!!!
This is by far one of my favorite books, if not, my Number 1 favorite. I study martial arts of all types, it is my obsession, having books and training in Martial Arts from all... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Elliot
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful resource
Although scholars may disagree on a few conclusions (which happens to any substantial tome), this is a very thorough, beautiful, and well-made collection detailing the world of... Read more
Published 10 months ago by M. Molnar
5.0 out of 5 stars very interesting book
This was a requested gift. well packaged. no damage. He has really enjoyed reading about the martial arts. nice looking book as well.
Published 23 months ago by sniglett
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating History With Broad Appeal
This book should have broad appeal to those interested in Renaissance history, military history, and HEMA / SCA / LARP martial artists. Read more
Published on June 20, 2012 by Sean McCoy
3.0 out of 5 stars The Mounted Joust
excellent product. Has many references and descriptions of tools used in the art of the tournament.
Published on March 9, 2010 by Allen G. Blanchette
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Study of European Martial Skills Yet Published!
I was astounded to find this book. By far, it the best academic study of Western fighting arts I have found. Read more
Published on August 19, 2006 by ThorBjorn
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, though his conclusions are debatable
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book (I skipped around alot, it is extremely dense), and I agree with the many others who have stated that this is a ground-breaking encyclopedic... Read more
Published on October 4, 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars Engaging scholarship from Dr. Anglo!
Sydney Anglo has, in this book, produced a significant and engaging view in to the world of European Renaissance martial arts. Read more
Published on January 31, 2001 by Christopher Alexander
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Bad, Not Great
I really admire Dr. Anglo's scholarship, and I think that the information he's brought to light, particularly concerning rare manuals (Monte, for instance), is truly useful. Read more
Published on October 8, 2000
Search Customer Reviews
Search these reviews only



Books on Related Topics (learn more)


Sell a Digital Version of This Book in the Kindle Store

If you are a publisher or author and hold the digital rights to a book, you can sell a digital version of it in our Kindle Store. Learn more

Forums

There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 



Look for Similar Items by Category