|© 1994, 2000 Richard J. Orli - Credits
||Di Grasse - His true Art
The First Part - The Basics
Time of Advantage - a moment of opportunity during which a strike may be safely delivered.
Foible (weak torque for parry) - parts 4 and 3
Forte (strong) - parts 1 and 2
II. The Sword
all weapons a man may use, none is more honorable, handy, useful or safe than the sword.
The sword offers two tools - edge and point. Weather you cut or thrust you must observe
the time of advantage - when your sword is more near and more ready to strike
than the enemy's.
This principle is easiest to apply against edgeblows (cuts). For example, if your enemy
is close and cuts widely (the point describes a big circle as your opponent swings), you
must not defend, but close and strike with the point with all celerity. As you hit home
you will prevent the fall of the enemy's sword. If forced to defend from any edgeblow,
parry with the strong part of the blade, close to the hand.
The blows of the sword are strongest the further from the hand, much as the force at
the rim of a wheel is stronger than at the spokes. Dividing the blade into four parts, the
two nearest the point 4 and 3 are to be used for striking. 1 and 2 are to be used for
wards, since nearer the hand they are strong to resist any violence. These divisions are
illustrated in Figure 1.
This logic applies to the arms, and the wrist and elbow should be used (adding to the
circumference of the circle, they add force to the blow). But, as they are strong, they
are also slow (as they perform the greater compass) Therefore, do not swing from the
shoulder, because you will give to much time to your enemy, and the wrist and elbow give
Remember - the hit with the point is the straightest, shortest, and fastest.
The Rapier is long and lightweight , designed primarily to thrust. In 1550, it was a light and long broadsword variation that kept getting lighter year by year. By 1650 new rapiers had become so light that blades often broke, leading soon to blades forged with a triangular cross-section.
By 1600, rapiers were lighter and the benefit of using the elbow was reduced, as it provided insufficent additional momentum to be an effect cut. Saviolio no longer recommended using the elbow to cut.
Diagram illustrating arc of blow from the sholder (large circle), elbow, and wrist.