The compleat fencing-master in which is fully described the whole guards, parades & lessons belonging to the small-sword : as also the best rules for playing against either artists or ignorants with blunts or sharps : together with directions how to behave in a single combat on horse-back : illustrated with figures representing the most necessary postures
Hope, William, Sir.
Page  74

Lesson. 16. of Beating.

Ma.

My next Lesson is, of the beating of your Adversaries Sword, with one or both hands.

Sch.

I pray you shew me how that is done?

Ma.

A Man should never offer to make use of this Lesson, untill he be almost Mas∣ter of this Art, because the doing of it dis∣ordereth his Body, besides that a Man is in hazard of being hitt, if he should miss his Beat, but because you are curious to know how it is done, I shall satisfie you.

Sch.

I pray you do so?

Ma.

You must do it after this manner, * when you intend to make use of this Lesson, you must let your Adversaries Sword be within yours, & then either only with your right hand, or otherwise, with your Left, joyned to your sword about 8. or 10. In∣ches from the hilt, as in Plate 11. Fig. 2. (To do it with the greater Force,) Dis engage, and beat your Adversaries Sword strongly, and smartly, upon the outside, with the strong of yours, upon the Feible of his, and Page  75do it with a spring, that is when you beat, let not the point of your sword fol∣low your Adversaries, but keep your point as near streight towards your Adversarie as possible, the doing of which will less dis∣order your Body, then if e followed your Adversaries sword, for then your Body would be discovered within your sword, and so you would give your Adversarie, an op∣portunity to thrust at you, if you hapned to miss his sword.

Sch.

I take you up very well, But what signi∣fyeth this beating?

Ma.

It is very usefull, for if you beat your Adversaries sword smartly, * and with a spring, as I before told you, you will hardly ever fail, either to beat it, (unless he be all the better skill'd in this Art, and take the more notice to himself;) out of his hand, or if he keep his sword very firme, you may infallibly give him the Thrust, but remember if you intend to give the Thrust, to give it upon the streight Line, by keeping a Closs Left Foot, unless you in∣tend to Pass with your beat, as I shall teach your hereafter.

Sch.

Well, but can I never make use of this Lesson, but when my Adversarie hath presented his sword within mine?

Page  76
Ma.

Yes, that you may very well.

Sch.

Shew me then upon what occasions, * I should make use of it?

Ma.

You may doe it upon thir occa∣sions, First, if your Adversarie offer to give in a plain Thrust, either within, or, without your sword, then before his Thrust come home to you, recovering your Body a little, Disengage, and beat his sword, if he Thrust within your sword, Disengage, and beat his sword, upon the out-side, and if he Thrust without, Disengage, and beat within, and instantly after the beat, give him home the Thrust. Secondly, if he should offer to make a Feint, within your sword, then im∣mediatly in the time of his making the Feint, Disengage, and beat his sword, and give him home the Thrust. Thirdly, if you should offer to make a Feint within his sword, and he should take time, and Thrust just as you are making your Feint, then in∣stantly Disengage and before his Thrust be home at you, beat his sword, and give him the Thrust, alwayes with a closs Left Foot; this I think as good a time for Beat∣ing of your Adversaries sword this way, as can be, but you must be sure not to miss his sword, for if you do, he is but an igno∣rant, if he miss you, And therefore, I Page  77think a man should be very Expert in the Parade, and judging of his Adversaries Measure, before he should offer to make use of this Lesson.

Sch.

I am much of your opinion, considering what difficulty there is in playing of it well.

Ma.

I can assure you, the more you practise this Lesson, the more you will find out the hazard a man is in, if he happen to miss his Adversaries Sword.

Sch.

I believe it indeed, but can a Man ne∣ver play this Lesson without Disengaging?

Ma.

Yes you may Beat your Adversaries Sword, after this same manner, without Disengaging, when he offereth to give in a plain Thrust, without your Sword, but then your Beat hath not such a spring with it, to cause him part with his Sword, as when he offereth to Thrust, either without or with∣in your Sword, and you Disengage, and Beat upon that time, which certainly is the best.

Sch.

You are in the right now when I consi∣der it. But is their no other way, to Beat the sword, * to cause it go out of my Adversaries Hand?

Ma.

Yes, there are yet two wayes which I have not as yet shewn you?

Sch.

I pray you show me them?

Ma.

The first way then is done thus, when your Adversary hath his sword pre∣sented Page  78within yours,* then on a sudden give a smart Beat, with the strong and edge of your sword, upon the Feible, and outter edge of his, and let your Beat be very strong, and quick.

Sch

Which is your second way?

Ma.

The second way is done by a twist, and is just done as you play under-counter, on∣ly you must do it with a spring, * by throw∣ing of your point smartly up towards your Adversaries left side?

Sch.

What contraries have you to this Beating of the sword?

Ma.

A man must of necessity either slipp the Beat,* or otherwise hold his Sword so fast, that his Adversary Beat it not out of his Hand. I have no other contraries against it, but the slipping is absolutly the best, you must also remember that you can never make use of Beating, but when you are with∣in distance.

Sch.

I shall, but is this all you have to say of the Beating of the sword?

Ma.

Yes.

Sch.

Which is your next Lesson then?