The Mystery of the Spanish Circle in Swordsmanship & Esoteric Arts, Euro 44 PZ11, Volume 11031103 ()




In the early years of the 17th century, Girard Thibault--poet, physician, architect, painter, occultist, and master swordsman--a true Renaissance Man--astonished the courts of Europe with a new system of swordsmanship based on the principles of sacred geometry and Renaissance occult philosophy. In his youth, Thibault studied the art of the sword with the great Dutch fencing master Lambert van Someren, then traveled to southern Spain to learn destreza, the revolutionary Spanish system of rapier fencing, from Luis Pachero de Navaraez and other masters of the art. After his return to the Netherlands around 1610, he won fame as one of the best swordsmen of his age, setting out to put everything he knew about the way of the sword into a single, comprehensive textbook of rapier fencing that could be used by students who had no access to a teacher of his system. Originally published a year after Thibault's death in 1630, Academy of the Sword is a superb textbook: the most elaborate manual of swordsmanship ever published in any language, packed with hundreds of clearly described and illustrated techniques. Sarting with the geometrical foundations of the system, Thibault proceeds step by step to explain effective methods of drawing the sword, entering into measure, subjecting the opponent's blade, countering his attacks and defeating him, whether the contest is friendly or a struggle to the death. He outlines competing systems of swordsmanship used in Europe during his time, points out their weaknesses and explains how their proponents can be defeated (including a specific chapter on how to defeat Salvatore Fabris), and he provides methods by which his pupils, armed only with a rapier, could overcome an opponent armed with a rapier and dagger, rapier and shield, two-anded sword, even a musket. Never before available in English, Academy of the Sword has been translated by noted scholar of the occult John Michael Greer. The result will be required reading for historical swordsmanship pracititioners, students of Renaissance history and culture, theatrical fight choreographers, and serious martial artists of all styles. * The world's first comprehensive and scientific treatment of rapier combat, intended for the student who wishes to study without the benefit of an instructor. * A critically important text of Renaissance rapier fencing and the esoteric connection between fencing and magic. * Amazingly detailed 17th century masterwork engravings from copperplate depict hundreds of techniques. * Clear accompanying text translated for the first time in English. * Discusses the engigmatic mysterious circle connecting the spiritual with physical technique.