The Art of the Rapier is a comprehensive manual intended to teach modern people how to fence in the style of the late sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Profusely illustrated with both photographs and examples from period treatises, it is written for three main audiences: devotees of the Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA) movement; members of the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA) and other medieval-recreation groups; and coaches of the modern sport of fencing who are looking to expand their competencies.
No prior experience is necessary: The Art of the Rapier reduces the works of Camillo Agrippa (1553), Salvator Fabris (1606), Nicoletto Giganti (1606 and 1608), and Ridolfo Capo Ferro (1610) to their commonalities and then teaches the movement skills to perform these actions from the ground up. It then builds the actions into period-accurate tactical sequences and shows how to incorporate these concepts into actual bouting. The final chapters teach advanced skills such as grappling techniques, rapier and dagger, and coaching techniques. A translation of Albert Lacaze and George Dubois' 1925 essay on sword and dagger completes the work.
This is a book that not only presents the art of Renaissance fencing in a way that is accessible to modern people, but also an entire philosophy and structure for reconstructing and teaching historical martial arts that will enable you to translate any historical fencing treatise from page to practice.