Sunday, November 15, 2009

Some Observations On the Zornhau


There has been quite a lot of argument and discussion on various internet fora regarding the correct use of the Zornhau in the Nach, that is, when being used to counter an Oberhau. Is it used to strike the opponent's sword (with a follow-up technique immediately afterwards), or is it to be used to strike his sword and his head in one motion--a "single-time cut with opposition"?

I have written a brief paper on this subject, to include pictorial demonstrations, which I believe definitively settles this question. It can be found on the die Schlachtschule web page by clicking this link: Some Observations on the Zornhau

As always, I welcome any responsible comments or questions.


DANIEL said...

My god how do you practice the longsword and fail to burn a calorie?

Hugh Knight said...

Hello Daniel,

You cannot. Ergo, either your understanding of weight loss is as flawed as your use of punctuation, or else I do not practice the longsword. Since the latter is manifestly false, the former is patently true.

You obviously come from that shallow, ignorant segment of society which erroneously associates waist size with physical prowess and exercise. A pity, really, but perhaps it would be better not to comment upon things of which you have no knowledge.

As I wrote in the blog post to which you responded, only responsible comments are welcome; yours was not such. Have you any insights into the paper to which this blog entry refers? Perhaps, for example, you have a comment relating to the differences between the Glosa in Ringeck and the one in von Danzig as they relate to the Zornhau Ort?


Davy said...

I have a question that is a little bit related to the zornhau. I find it strange that as to my understanding in the middelages a thrust was not commonly used, but when you look at techniques (such as the zornhau) it seems to be done very common. So my question is, how common was it in the middelages to stab with a longsword?

Kind regards,

Hugh Knight said...

Hello Davy,

The notion that the thrust was not used in the Middle Ages is a myth spread by modern foil fencers who wished to aggrandize their own sport. These are the same people who spread the myth that medieval swords were heavy and clunky and that there was no refined art to medieval swordsmanship.

In actuality, the thrust is one of the primary techniques of the medieval longsword. Even plays that seem to involve only cutting often rely upon the threat of a thrust to limit the enemy's choices.

So when someone says that thrusting was not a part of medieval swordsmanship, just tell them they do not know what they are talking about.