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Reece Nelson




Location: Overland Park KS
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PostPosted: Mon 19 Jan, 2009 11:41 pm    Post subject: Fighting with a disablity during the medieval/renaissance         Reply with quote

If a man during the 115th Century had gotten a limb amputated/ cut off Eek! , would he have still gone into battle? Is there any evidence of any sort of medieval men at arms continuing the fight with that kind of a disability?

I have a left leg amputation that I'v had since birth and do sword fighting in a reenactment group portraying the yeomen of the guard.

I fight with a broadsword and a pair of period looking crutches that Iv had specially made for me. I'v been talking to a number of people about having some sort of attachment or shield as part of the crutches. You can click on the link below to see pictures of me fighting Big Grin

http://www.stamaria.com/shared/yeomen/pages/t...page3.html
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292350...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292435...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292350...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292435...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292436...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292436...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292351...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292444...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292444...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292359...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292359...827823078/
http://flickr.com/photos/eatingmywords/292445...827823078/

But would people have done that? Would they have adapted in order to fight? Or would they have just called it quits?

The captain of my group tells me they would have fought with a disability like mine, but I haven't found anything.



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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Mon 19 Jan, 2009 11:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here is one example: Gotz von Berlichingen
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Götz_von_Berlichingen

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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D. Bell




Location: New Zealand
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PostPosted: Sat 24 Jan, 2009 6:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

A viking in Grettir's Saga by the name of Onund lost a leg in battle, but appears to have continued to fight after he recovered, with his wooden leg earning him a new nickname of "tree-foot".
An armed society is a polite society.
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Dan Dickinson
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Location: Michigan
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PostPosted: Sat 24 Jan, 2009 9:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Not quite the same thing, but John of Bohemia had the same kind of fighting spirit as the previously mentioned and wouldn't let his near blindness stop him from going into battle.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_of_Luxemburg
Dan
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Grayson C.




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PostPosted: Sat 24 Jan, 2009 9:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jean Thibodeau wrote:
Here is one example: Gotz von Berlichingen
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Götz_von_Berlichingen


Hey Jean - I've actually stayed in his castle for a night in germany! He's a fascinating figure, to be sure.
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Sun 25 Jan, 2009 12:03 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Grayson C. wrote:
Jean Thibodeau wrote:
Here is one example: Gotz von Berlichingen
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Götz_von_Berlichingen


Hey Jean - I've actually stayed in his castle for a night in germany! He's a fascinating figure, to be sure.


Nice, sounds like and interesting experience. Cool

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Mikael Ranelius




Location: Sweden
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PostPosted: Sun 25 Jan, 2009 4:01 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The excavated remains of men who died at the battle of Visby in 1361 reveal that many of them suffered from more or less crippling conditions, including arthritis, tuberculosis, inherent deformities as well as past injuries that had healed but would have caused disability to some degree. These were however part of an emergency levy, so I’m not sure whether they’re to be considered representative for medieval fighting men in general, or at least not professional soldiers such as men-at-arms.

Nevertheless, my guess is that a disabled man-at-arms or indentured yeoman would have carried on with his service as long as he was fit for fight, as it must have been a matter of pride and prestige for him.

Btw Reece cool pics!
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Sam Gordon Campbell




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PostPosted: Sun 25 Jan, 2009 4:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Perhaps Baldwin IV of Jerusalem? I know He's nowhere near the 15th C. But still, leprosy gotta be worth somthing lol
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Adam S.





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PostPosted: Sun 25 Jan, 2009 9:10 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I found THIS thread to be quite helpful.

Cheers,

~A
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Reece Nelson




Location: Overland Park KS
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PostPosted: Sun 25 Jan, 2009 3:17 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Adam S. wrote:
I found THIS thread to be quite helpful.

Cheers,

~A


Are there any prosthetic legs found during that time?
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Dave W.




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PostPosted: Sun 25 Jan, 2009 8:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

On a much less historical note, I must say that I'm very impressed that even in your current situation you are still able to spar. From what little sparring I've done, I know that it can be exhausting, so the fact that you can do it seemingly pretty well with a crutch is quite an achievement to say the least.

My guess is that if you can sword fight for fun, a medieval amputee would definetly grab a crutch and a sword to defend his land and his family.
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Josh MacNeil




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PostPosted: Sun 25 Jan, 2009 8:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Reese - I have to second Dave's words. And I mean this with the utmost respect and admiration when I say you're truly a one legged man in an ass kicking contest! You're an embodiment of true passion and fighting spirit. I'd love to see you in action some day. I raise my glass in salute, my friend. Does your adapted fighting style incorporate your crutch as an offensive/defensive tool?
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Thom R.




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PostPosted: Sun 25 Jan, 2009 9:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I too am blown away by your tenacity and love for the sport - don't ever give up doing what you love!

Instead of a shield what about a gauntlet and some armor for the left hand and arm. For example many royalist cavalry in the english civil war used gauntlets and braces on their left arms only which they used for warding blows on their left side..... some kind of easily slipped on brigandine sleeve with a gauntlet would be easy to use, not too heavy, and give you lots of protection. tr
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Sun 25 Jan, 2009 10:37 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Reece: Very impressive pics of you fighting and I imagine that using the sword only one handed is also an extra challenge.

Just curious, and excuse the indiscretion or my ignorance of issues that might make using an artificial leg difficult or impossible, but I wonder if you rely on always using a crutch or do you also use an artificial leg in fighting or in just getting around in every day life ?

With an artificial leg it would free you up for two handed use of the longsword.

Not exactly the period you are asking about or even the same activity but here is a link to Terry Fox who ran across Canada
on an artificial leg: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terry_Fox

( You may already be aware of Terry Fox, but it being a Canadian story of around 1980 you might not ? Inspirational to say the least ).

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Jonathan Blair




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PostPosted: Mon 26 Jan, 2009 4:01 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan Dickinson wrote:
Not quite the same thing, but John of Bohemia had the same kind of fighting spirit as the previously mentioned and wouldn't let his near blindness stop him from going into battle.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_of_Luxemburg
Dan


Of course it didn't go so well for John or the knights that he was tied to at Crecy. Sometimes you have to question the sanity of someone who is blind tying himself to other people then giving them a sharp and pointy object before going and facing others who have sharp and pointy objects pointed at them. This is not to say that those with infirmaties couldn't fight, but that perhaps a line should have been drawn in the case of John of Luxemburg.

BTW Reece, I must also join in with the others saying how impressed I am with your sparring. I enjoyed all the pictures.

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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Reece Nelson




Location: Overland Park KS
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PostPosted: Mon 26 Jan, 2009 11:22 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jean Thibodeau wrote:
Reece: Very impressive pics of you fighting and I imagine that using the sword only one handed is also an extra challenge.

Just curious, and excuse the indiscretion or my ignorance of issues that might make using an artificial leg difficult or impossible, but I wonder if you rely on always using a crutch or do you also use an artificial leg in fighting or in just getting around in every day life ?

With an artificial leg it would free you up for two handed use of the longsword.

Not exactly the period you are asking about or even the same activity but here is a link to Terry Fox who ran across Canada
on an artificial leg: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terry_Fox

( You may already be aware of Terry Fox, but it being a Canadian story of around 1980 you might not ? Inspirational to say the least ).


I do have a prosthesis, but it is extremely uncomfortable and not suited at all for fighting Sad

I use the crutches because that is most comfortable to me, and I have good enough balance to were if I lose my crutches im still able to hope around and fight Laughing Out Loud

I really need a custom made prosthesis specifically for fighting. Iv been studying the German longsword techniques of Hans Talhoffer and Sigmund Ringek, and I can't do that style of fighting because of my condition. Its been really frustrating
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Reece Nelson




Location: Overland Park KS
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PostPosted: Mon 26 Jan, 2009 11:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dave W. wrote:
On a much less historical note, I must say that I'm very impressed that even in your current situation you are still able to spar. From what little sparring I've done, I know that it can be exhausting, so the fact that you can do it seemingly pretty well with a crutch is quite an achievement to say the least.

My guess is that if you can sword fight for fun, a medieval amputee would definetly grab a crutch and a sword to defend his land and his family.


Thanks for the cool comment about me Big Grin

I started out doing stage combat then I moved up to the actual fighting techniques (Hanz Talhoffer and such).

Its been frustrating because I know that I would do really well with the german longword if I had both my legs Mad

Its been holding me back
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Reece Nelson




Location: Overland Park KS
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PostPosted: Mon 26 Jan, 2009 11:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Josh MacNeil wrote:
Reese - I have to second Dave's words. And I mean this with the utmost respect and admiration when I say you're truly a one legged man in an ass kicking contest! You're an embodiment of true passion and fighting spirit. I'd love to see you in action some day. I raise my glass in salute, my friend. Does your adapted fighting style incorporate your crutch as an offensive/defensive tool?


Actually yes it does. If used the top of the crutch to hook peoples weapons and I'v done some disarms with it as well Big Grin

Also I'll throw my crutches in the air and come in with the sword for a touch. I cheat Big Grin
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Nate C.




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PostPosted: Mon 26 Jan, 2009 7:51 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

In the way of fighting through infirmity, my fencing instructor was 83(?) when he stopped instructing. He also had Arthritus and at least one titanium knee. Even with all this, none of the advanced students (including myself) had any doubts about his abilities. I would venture to guess that he could have given a rather good account of himself even though he couldn't move very well. He had over 40 years of experience in the art and didn't really need to move to kill you Big Grin . Granted he wasn't what he used to be in his fighting days, but I still would have given good odds to him in a scored bout against most of my classmates.

Cheers,

Nate C.

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Reece Nelson




Location: Overland Park KS
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PostPosted: Wed 28 Jul, 2010 8:42 am    Post subject: fighting with a disability         Reply with quote

I just recently uploaded a video of me performing at KCRF if anyone wanted to see me in action Cool My crutches were coming apart so I apologize if guards look odd Worried Enjoy!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9891vPGisw
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