About the Manuscript and this Transcription
The National Library of Saxony in Dresden, Germany (Sächsische
Landesbibliothek – Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek
Dresden) owns the manuscript “Fecht-, Ring- und Turnierbuch – Mscr.Dresd.C.93/94” in
two volumes. The first one, Mscr.Dresd.
C 93, is available
The second one is expected soon.
Paulus Hector Mair not only commisioned and paid this Fechtbuch,
he also took responsibility for
selecting the shown techniques
(f. 2r “als ich dises Eernwerckh
zu°samen geordnet...” “when
I arranged this work of honour...”). Mair wrote the detailed
introduction (“Vorred”), because he experienced young
people of those days to be too
ignorant, impertinent, lazy and
careless to honour the Kunst
des Fechtens (f. 2r). The manuscript
dates to the middle of the 16th
century (post 1542). See also “Katalog
der deutschsprachigen illustrierten
Handschriften des Mittelalters”, edited
by Rainer Leng, p. 97 ff („Bd. 2 196r Wie aber die bemellte
Sannct Leonharts Kirch Anno 1542
von dem Rathe zu Augspurg abgebrochen“).
Paulus Hector Mair was servant
of the town council of Augsburg
at that time (f. 16r).
Mair’s work is recorded in 3 manuscripts. Mscr. Dresd. C 93/94
is written in German. BSB Cod.icon
393 (1/2), held in the Bavarian
State Library in Munich (Bayerische
is in Latin (online, Englisch
translation of the sickle part). The third
one, Codex Vindobensis 10825/26
in the National Library of Austria
in Vienna (Österreichische
Nationalbibliothek Wien), is
bilangual German-Llatin (online).
Both German versions differ only
in some spellings and in the
use of punctuation marks.
The first volume of the manuscript from Dresden contains: “Vorred” (foreword
f. 2r-16r), “Register” and warning (f. 16v-19v), “Lannge
schweert” (longsword f. 20r-113r), “Du°seggen” (dussack
f. 114r-180v), “Stenglin” (staff f. 181r-191v, be careful
with the online version as there
is something wrong with the order
of the pages), “lange~ Spieß” (long
staff f. 192r-199v), “Helle~parten” (halberd
f. 200r-211v), “Seges [scythe f. 214r-217v] Trischel [flail
f. 218r-222v] Bau°rnstangen [peasant’s
staff f. 223r-226v], vnd wor
wider wor [mixed weapons f. 227r-232v]” and
last the “Sichel”(sickle).
The techniques for sickle are on Folio 233r-242v (pp. 468-488 in
the Pdf). The heading is followed
by a register of the 16 pieces (“stend” f. 233r). Every
piece has its own page with heading, coloured “screenshot” during
the technique and explanation.
This text contains an opening technique with several following actions
for both opponents.
The foliation is written with pencil in the upper right corner
of the right pages. In
the transcription, the page number
in the Pdf is placed in brackets
behind for a better overview.
In addition, the pictures are
numbered from 1 to 16 in their
upper right corners. These numbers
correspond to the register,
which is useful because the names
of the techniques differ a bit.
The headings as well as part
of the first line of the explanation
are in bigger letters than the
rest. It is transcribed with
bold letters. The type is a well
to read Gothic letter (“fraktur”).
The headings resemble a textura,
the text a cursiva. The whole
manuscript seems to be written
by one hand only. Conspicious
differences in spelling make
it likely that the sickle part
was more than one day’s work,
three sections might be distinguished.
Punctuation marks are rare and seldom used. These dots (•)
are taken over in the transcription.
From time to time they occur
in places where they mark sections
in the text (e.g. places for
modern punctuation marks). Sometimes,
but not always, sections are
also marked with a capital letter
of the following word. In the
whole text the usage of capital
and small letters seems rather
arbitrary. The transcription
of this is in some cases also
an interpretation. The same occurs
with the division of single words.
Ligatures e.g. for “tz” were
dissolved into single letters
with the exception of “sz” which
is transcribed as “ß”.
The letters “u” and “v” at the
beginning of words are not distinguished.
Diacritic marks like “u°”, “w°” and
taken over if possible. The same
applies to “~” for missing letters
at the end of words.
Have fun with this manuscript and especially with interpreting
the sickle, a completely weird weapon!
Julia Gräf and Ingo Petri, September 2010
Register [JG & IP]
Kunst des langen Schwerts
Scythe [JG & IP]
Flail [JG & IP]
Peasant’s Staff [JG & IP]
Sickle [JG & IP]