Tag Archives: Gomard

The Cavé in French Swordsmanship

French fencing masters wrote about the cavé (pronounced cahv-ay) as a distinct fencing action. In French, caver means to cave in or collapse. The cavé thus described how a fencer would change or position his wrist or body to create a sharp angle—“caving in” from, … Continue reading

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French Authors’ Use of the False Attacks and Feints

I.  Introduction Recently, I’ve been trying to drill down on the French authors’ conceptual and mechanical distinctions between fausse attaques—i.e., false attacks—and feints.  Although ostensibly different, it appeared to me that the boundaries between false attacks and feints could easily … Continue reading

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Retenue du Corps

Over the next several weeks, CCF members will continue to hone skills as we improve our retenue du corps, or restraint of the body.  Retinue du corps is that precious quality by which the fencer who wants to attack is … Continue reading

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The Fencing Mask: Trading Fencing Purity for Safety

The fencing mask that modern fencers would recognize as such was not invented until the latter half of the 18th century.  However, that’s not to say that there were no fencing masks before this time.  Before that time, a fencing … Continue reading

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Tromper and Doigté

As we study le trompement this month, we are necessarily focusing on using our fingers and, to a lesser extent, our wrists in steering our blades around attempted parries and engagements.  The French had a term for skillful finger-work in … Continue reading

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