Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

Acta Periodica Duellatorum

1 Issue per year

Open Access
See all formats and pricing
More options …

Investigation on the collation of the first Fight book (Leeds, Royal Armouries, Ms I.33)

Fanny Binard / Daniel Jaquet
Published Online: 2016-05-14 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apd-2016-0001


This paper investigates the collation of the first Fight Book, the Leeds, Royal Armouries, Ms I.33. It critically reviews previous hypotheses about the composition of the quires and the identification of the material lacuna, and proposes a new hypothesis. This investigation is based on observation of the original after restoration (2012) and the simulation of the previous hypotheses with a working document composed of laminated sheets into which reproductions were inserted. Bifolia were physically attached, forming quires by successive folds. This simulation phase allowed us to analyse textual and pictorial content according to the various postulates and to propose identification of the material lacuna. The pivot point allowing a new argumentation are the two counterfoils of the two flying leaves (fol. 19 and 26), which were not taken into account by previous researchers. Several synoptical diagrams of the representation of the quire are enclosed for the reader to follow the developments.

Keywords : Fight Book; Ms. I.33; Liber de arte dimicatoria; tower fechtbuch; Walpurgis fechtbuch; codicology; collation; manuscript studies


  • VI.1 Primary sources Google Scholar

  • Anonymous, Liber de arte Dimicatoria, 1320-1330. Leeds, Royal Armouries, Ms I.33.Google Scholar

  • Anonymous, compendium (Hans Talhoffer Fight book), 17th c. Wolfenbüttel, Herzog Google Scholar

  • August Bibliothek, Cod. Guelf. 125.16 Extrav.Google Scholar

  • VI.2 Secondary literature Google Scholar

  • Cinato, Franck, ‘Development, Diffusion and Reception of the Buckler plays: A Fighting Art in the Making, a case study’, in Late Medieval and Early Modern Fight Books, ed. by Daniel Jaquet, Timothy Dawson and Karin Verelst (Leiden: Brill, 2016).Google Scholar

  • Cinato, Franck, and André Surprenant, ‘L’escrime à la bocle comme méthode d’autodéfense selon le Liber de Arte Dimicatoria’, in L’art chevaleresque du combat : Le maniement des armes à travers les livres de combat (XIVe - XVIe siècle), by Daniel Jaquet (Neuchâtel: Alphil, 2013), pp. 81-89.Google Scholar

  • Cinato, Franck, and André Surprenant, ‘L’escrime scolastique du Liber de Arte Dimicatoria. Un cas de rationalisation par l’image’, in Quand l’image relit le texte: regards croisés sur les manuscrits médiévaux, ed. by Sandrine Hériché-Pradeau and Maud Pérez-Simon (Paris: Presses Sorbonne Nouvelle, 2013), pp. 249-60.Google Scholar

  • Cinato, Franck, and André Surprenant, Le Livre de l’art du combat (Liber de Arte Dimicatoria) : Édition critique du Royal Armouries MS. I.33, Sources d’histoire médiévale, 39 (Paris: CNRSéd, 2009).Google Scholar

  • Forgeng, Jeffrey L, The Illuminated Fightbook: Royal Armouries Manuscript I.33. 2 vols (Dorset: Royal Armouries and Extraordinary Editions, 2013).Google Scholar

  • Forgeng, Jeffrey L, The medieval art of swordsmanship : a facsimile & translation of Europe’s oldest personal combat treatise, Royal Armouries MS I.33 (Union City: Chivalry Bookshelf, 2003).Google Scholar

  • Hester, James, ‘A Few Leaves Short of a Quire: Is the “Tower Fechtbuch” Incomplete?’, Arms & Armour, 9 (2012), 20-24.Google Scholar

  • Leng, Rainer, Hella Frühmorgen-Voss, Norbert H. Ott, Ulrike Bodemann, Peter Schmidt, and Christine Stöllinger-Löser, Katalog Der Deutschsprachigen Illustrierten Handschriften Des Mittelalters Band 4/2, Lfg. 1/2: 38: 38. Fecht- Und Ringbücher, C.H. Beck (München: Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften, 2008).Google Scholar

  • Morini, Andrea and Riccardo Rudilosso, Manoscritto I.33 (Rome: Il Cerchio Iniziative Editoriali, 2012).Google Scholar

About the article

Published Online: 2016-05-14

Published in Print: 2016-04-01

Citation Information: Acta Periodica Duellatorum, Volume 4, Issue 1, Pages 3–22, ISSN (Online) 2064-0404, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apd-2016-0001.

Export Citation

© 2016. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 License. BY-NC-ND 4.0

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in