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Compilation of German Masters

Of the Longsword.

Compiled by

William J. Welch


  To start I would like to thank everyone for their inspiration, Mike Rasmussen, for use of his translations from, my brother David Welch (and training partner), for introducing me to WMA, to Jake Norwood, without his swordsmanship and teaching ability, I would have been lost from the start, and last but not least my wife Jennifer, for divorcing me and giving me back my life.


 In this book, I hope to combine Dobringer 1389, Ringeck 1440, Goliath 1452, Talhoffer 1467, Drexler 1488, Meyer 1570, and Sutor 1612 concentrating only on longsword and its cuts and guards (very little halfswording, being as how that is an art all to its self.), being as that is a major realm of study for most anyone that discovers this lost art, and probably their lost heritage at the same time. I have been told from many sources, which are much more learned than I am, that everything learned with the longsword is directly transferable to other forms of weapons combat (It has been my thought that whatever master is writing that he is of the opinion that his art be it wrestling, pole arm, or longsword that it is the well spring of fighting, and in their case it is because that is what they either learned first or that is what they relate everything to).


 I am not of the position to try to explain the various items that are described by the Masters, Lord knows I do not have the qualifications to even conceive of such a task, I just hope to simplify with a side-by-side comparison of the guards, cuts, and combinations put forth from these great swordsmen. I must stress this text is by no means a substitute for the Originals. I have attempted to compress the texts together so that the reader would not have to flip from one to the other, but if there is any question as to whether the technique is represented correctly then please refer to the original or someone with more knowledge than I have. I have tried to gather all the information together, but do to the nature of the beast, I am sure that I have missed something. I hope to keep adding to this book as I find more information.


I have tried to put the information that follows in such a way that it flows from one to the other with the basics first, whether I succeeded or not is up to the reader. The Placement of the Verses in the following pages, is purely coincidental and have no bearing as to importance, or meaning to lessons of the Masters.


 Therefore, without further ramblings I hope to do justice to the legacy of these great minds, and not diminish the lessons of these great masters.


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