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In the Service of Mars – Vol I – Proceedings from the Western Martial Arts Workshop 1999–2009

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7” x 10” Paperback 340 Pages

In the Service of Mars – Proceedings from the Western Martial Arts Workshop 19992009, Volume I

Martial Arts are literally ”The Arts of Mars,” the Roman god of war. For over two and a half millennia, the combat arts of Europe served the hoplite, gladiator, legionnaire, knight, duelist, boxer and wrestler on the battlefield, in the duel, as street defense and in the ring. Interest in these traditions has grown dramatically over the last twenty years, bringing together a unique combination of fighters and scholars in the quest to resurrect and preserve this proud heritage of fighting lore.

The Western Martial Arts Workshop (WMAW) was founded in 1999 as a way for the students of these martial arts to meet, train, exchange research, and lay the foundation for an enduring Western martial arts community. In the Service of Mars, Volume One is both a compilation of some of the most popular and detailed lectures and class notes from WMAWs first decade, and a record of the growth of the Western martial arts community in depth and breadth over the same time. But it is not only a ”best-of” anthology; most of the inclusions here are substantially different from the form in which they first appeared in the WMAW event guides. The contributions in this book have been substantially revised, expanded, and photo-illustrated, coming as close to recreating an actual class in the subject as the written word can ever replicate a physical discipline.

From armoured axe combat to the elegant and swift rapier; the wrestling of Germany to the swordplay of the Scots Highlander, In the Service of Mars contains something new for every student of the Western martial arts, providing hours of training, food for thought, and a chronicle of the community’s growth over the last decade


  • Foreword
  • Part One: Martial Arts of the Middle Ages, ca. 13001550
  • The Dagger Plays of Gladiatoria – Jörg Bellinghausen
  • Bolognese Poleaxe Combat: A New Look at an Old Weapon – Gregory Mele
  • Hawks, Rabbits, and Tumbling Cats: An Analysis of English Longsword Terminology – Paul Wagner Ott s Ringen – Jessica Finley
  • Understanding Wide and Close Play in the Art of Fiore dei Liberi – Gregory Mele
  • Part Two: Martial Arts of the Renaissance and Enlightenment, ca. 15001850
  • George Silvers Four Fights: An Exercise in Reducing Complexity in Combat – Stephen Hand
  • The Fabris Wheel: An Introduction to the Rapier System of Salvator Fabris – Tom Leoni
  • Uniting Your Forces: Power and Efficiency in Italian Rapier – John OMeara
  • Jerónimo Sánchez de Carranza: A Man of Arms and Letters – Mary Dill Curtis
  • The Spadone, Empress of Weapons: An Introduction – Tom Leoni
  • An Introduction to Thomas Pages The Use of the Broad Sword (1746) – Paul Wagner
  • Part Three: Western Martial Arts in Their Historical Context
  • How a Sword Was Made – Craig Johnson
  • The Judicial Duel in Sixteenth-Century Italy – Tom Leoni
  • On the Art of Reading: An Introduction to Using the Medieval German Fightbooks – Keith Alderson
  • Part Four: PedagogyTeaching and the Western Martial Artist
  • Using Classical Italian Pedagogy in Developing Lesson Plans for Historical European Martial Arts – John Sullins, Sean Hayes, Puck Curtis, and Eric Myers
  • Notes on Training: Forms, Intervals and Skill Progression – Guy Windsor
Dimensions7'' x 10'' Paperback 340 Pages


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