Of Sword and buckler, Square Target and round Target.

BEing of opinion that as touching deceite, there is but one consideration to be had of all these three weapons, and for because all the difference which may be between them is laide downe and declared in the true arte, in the consideration of the forme of each of them: Therefore I am willing rather to restraine my selfe, then to indevoure to fill the leafe with the idle repetition of one thing twice.

All theis three weapons ought to be borne in the fist, the arme stretched out forwardes, and this is evidently seene in the square Target and buckler: the round Target also, because by reason of his greatnes and waight, it may not be holden in the onelie fist, & forwarde, in which kind of holding, it would warde much more is borne on the arme, being stretched foorth with the fist forwardes, which is in manner all one, or the selfe same. Therefore one may false as much with the one as with the other, considering there is no other false used with them then to discover and frame divers wards, bearing no respect to any advantage. And yet there is this difference betwene them, that with the round Target, one may easely warde both edgeblowes and thrustes, and with the square Target, better than with any other, he may warde edgeblowes, because it is of square forme: and the edge of the sword may easely be retained with the streight side thereof, which is not so easely done with the buckler: for over and besides the warding of thrustes, the buckler is not so sure of itself, but requireth aide of the sworde. Edge-blowes also when they come a thwart (for in that case, they incounter the circumference thereof: the which if it chaunce, the sword not to encounter on the diameter, or halfe, in which place the sword is onelie staied, but doth encounter it, either beneath, either above the saide diameter) maie easelie slippe and strike either the heade or thighs: therfore let everie man take heede and remember, that in striking at the buckler, either with the poynte or edge of the sword, he deliver it crossing or athwarte.

As concerning the falses and deceites, which may used in the handling of theis weapons, as at the single sworde, they are infinite, so at theis weapons they are much more, if the number of infinite may be exceded. For besides, that with the sword one may false a thrust, an edgeblowe, on high, alowe, within, without, and frame divers other unorderlie wardes, There remaineth one deceite or false properlie belonging unto theis, which is, to beare the buckler, square Target, or round Target, wide from the bodie, and therewithall to discover himselfe, to the end the enimie may be hindred, and lose time in striking, being therewithal sure & nimble to defend himself & offend the enimie. And this he may practise in everie ward, but more easelie with the square Target than with the other two, because it is bigge and large inough, & may easelie encounter and find the enimies when it commeth striking: but this happeneth not in the round Target, because his forme is circuler, neither in the buckler, because, besides his roundnes, it is also small: by meanes of which two things, blowes are very hardly encountred except a man be very much exercised in the handling thereof. And because there are two weapons, the one of offence, and the other of defence: it is to be considered, that when by meanes of a false thrust or degblowe, the enimies round Target, square Target or buckler, is onely bound to his warde, and his sword remaines free and at libertie, one resolve not himselfe to strike immediatly after the falced thrust, for then he may verie easelie be hurt by the enimies sword. Therefore let him remember for the most parte, to false such thrustes, against the which, besides the weapon of defence, the sword be also bound to his warde, or else to false edgeblowes from the knee downewards: for seeing the round target, or any of the other two, may not be used in that place, of force the sword must be there placed at his defence, which as soone as it is found, and thereby ensured that it may do no hurte, a man may then step forwardes, and deliver such a blowe as he best may without daunger.

An advertisement concerning the defences of the false of the round Target.

EVerie time that one useth to false with round Target, square Target, and buckler, or as I may better saie, with the sword accompanied with them, he falseth either an edge-blowe, either a thrust, either leaveth some parte of the bodie before discogered. Against all the falces of the edge, which come from the knee upwards, the round Target or any of the rest, must be oppressed, and then suddenly them a thrust be delivered, against that parte which is most disarmed. But if blowes come from the knee downwardes, they of force must be encountred with the sword, and alwaies with the false, or backe edge thereof, whether that the blowe be right or reversed: & therewithall the enimies legge must be cutt with the edge prepared without moving either the feete or bodie. And this manner of striking is so shorte that it safely spedeth. Moreover, all thrusts and other edgeblowes, aswell high as lowe may, naie rather ought to be warded, by accompaning the target or other weapon of defence with the sword, whose poynt would be bent towards the enimie, & as soone as the enimies sword is encountred, if it be done with the false edge of the sword, there is no other to be done, then to cut his face or legges.

But if the sword be encountred with the right edge then if he would strik with the edge, he must of force first turne his hand and so cute. And this manner of striking and defending, doth properlie belong unto the round Target, square Target and buckler, and all other waies are but vaine and to small purpose: for to encounter first and then to strike, causeth a man to finde himselfe either within the enimies Target or sword, by which meanes he may easelie strike, before either the sword or Target may warde againe.

But if any man aske why this kind of blowe carrieth small force, and is but weake: I aunswer, true it is, the blowe is but weake, if it were delivered with an axe or a hatchet, which as they saie, have but short edges, and maketh but one kind of blowe, but if it be delivered with a good sword in the foresaide manner, because it beareth a long edge, it doth commodiously cut, as soone as the edge hath founde the enimies sword, and especially on those partes of the bodie which are fleshly and full of sinnowes. Therefore speaking of deceite or falsing, a man must alwaies with the sword and round Target and such like, goe and encounter the enimies blowes, being accompanied to gether. And as soone as he hath found the enimies sword, he shall within it, cute either the face or the leggs, without any farthar recoverie of his sword, to the intent to deliver either thrustes, or greater edgeblowes: for if one would both defende and strike togeither, this is the most shorte waie that is.

But when the enimie discovereth some parte of his bodie, thereby provoking his adversary to strike, and then would beate off the blowe and strike withall: in this case, either a man must not strike if he perceve not that his sword is more neare the enimy, then his owne Target is to the enimies sword, or else if he strik and be further off, he must recover his sword & void the enimies blowe, striking comodiously ether above ether some wher els. And it is a very easie mater to lose much time, for the Target and such like are heavie, And if these motions meete with no object or steye, they passe beyond their strength. But if it so happen or chaunce, as I have before saide, that a man findes himselfe more neare to hurte the enimie, then the enimie is readie to defend himselfe, then he must not false a blow first, & then recover his sword, but strik & drive it home at the first, as resolutlie & as nimblie as he may posiblie: & this manner of striking pertaineth rather to true art then to deceit or falsing.