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Christopher VaughnStrever




Location: San Antonio, TX
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PostPosted: Thu 24 Feb, 2011 6:15 am    Post subject: The first Fechtschule in San Antonio, TX         Reply with quote

I am proud to announce that the First and only Fechtshule in San Antonio, TX The Ritterlich Fechtschule is officially underway and is having our meets every Friday. This has been a long endeavor of mine and finally after a couple years I have made it happen. I would like to give a huge thanks to Allen Foster as he has helped me to get my footing and by extension we are now in association with the Freifechters.

Our main Fechtmeister to learn from is the Liechtenauer society atm with high regards to Ernstfechten, along with a heavy training in Harnischfechten and of course Bloisfechten. Down the road we look to cover Meyer and his teachings of Schulefechten.

The only non-German manual we will consider is that of Le Jeu De La Hache for a study aid to the pole axe. We are currently focusing on Grappling, and the poleaxe. As we await two swords set to arrive by the end of late march at that time we will officially begin our study (which will become our main focus) of the longsword


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Randall Pleasant




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PostPosted: Thu 24 Feb, 2011 7:12 am    Post subject: Re: The first Fechtschule in San Antonio, TX         Reply with quote

Christopher

Congratulations! May your group grow quickly in size and skills. We look forward to hearing many good things from you and your group.

Ran Pleasant
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Scott Hrouda




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PostPosted: Thu 24 Feb, 2011 7:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

How exciting! I wish you and The Ritterlich Fechtschule great success. Happy

(Beautiful pole axe by the way)

...and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped. - Sir Bedevere
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Scott Brown





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PostPosted: Thu 24 Feb, 2011 2:53 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Christopher,

Congratulations on your new club/school/academy!

I'm not sure what the focus of your group is exactly but if you are working towards historical technique reproduction (WMA / HEMA) you may want to consider modifying your name to Ritterliche Schirmschule instead of fechtschule. See the opening paragraph of the Fechtschule America announcement for more details but essentially a fechtschule is an "event" rather than a "location" (dojo, salle) or "guild/club/etc."

http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=21709

Also, please consider joining us at the Fechtschule America since you're local-ish, I promise it'll be enlightening and fun! Big Grin

Best of luck with the new club, always great to see another HEMA group get up and running.

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Christopher VaughnStrever




Location: San Antonio, TX
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PostPosted: Thu 24 Feb, 2011 6:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I would love to attend the Fechtshule America, though my funds at this moment are spent furthering our Fechtshule. I have looked into the word Schimschule and could only find one source that actually held the word Fechtschule and Schimshule in the same context.

I doubt I would actually change the name, however I would love to learn more about the actual meanings and references concerning Schimschule. I always like to learn the proper terms and understandings, that way I can always explain and point these things out so that I don't mislead myself, and thus mislead others.

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Jim Mearkle




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PostPosted: Thu 24 Feb, 2011 8:51 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Why couldn't you have done this when I was at Trinity U.? (Just kidding! I graduated in '90)

Best of luck with the new school. If I ever make it back for an alumni weekend, I'll be sure to look you up.

Jim
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Christopher VaughnStrever




Location: San Antonio, TX
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PostPosted: Fri 25 Feb, 2011 5:17 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the compliments and the kind words everyone. If it was not for the people on this forum and everything everyone has contributed over the years I would never have gotten to this point in my life. So a LARGE THANKS to this forum, its creator, the moderators and the people who participate in the well educated posts made by you the people!
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Allen Foster





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PostPosted: Fri 25 Feb, 2011 6:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Scott Brown wrote:
I'm not sure what the focus of your group is exactly but if you are working towards historical technique reproduction (WMA / HEMA) you may want to consider modifying your name to Ritterliche Schirmschule instead of fechtschule. See the opening paragraph of the Fechtschule America announcement for more details but essentially a fechtschule is an "event" rather than a "location" (dojo, salle) or "guild/club/etc."

http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=21709
.


I always thought Fechtshule was German for Fencing School. If fencing school is wrong to use, then there are a lot of other groups using it.

"Rise up, O Lord, and may thy enemies be dispersed and those who hate thee be driven from thy face."
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Bill Grandy
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PostPosted: Fri 25 Feb, 2011 7:58 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Actually, the term "fechtschule" can mean both an event and an actual place to practice. Christoph Amberger has pointed out that in the 18th century you see the term all the time to describe a school, and is interchangible with the term "fechtboden", which is a loft where one practices.

Yes, it does also denote a public sporting event of fencing matches, but Christopher is not wrong in using it for the name.

Either way, congrats on the new school, Christopher.

Virginia Academy of Fencing Historical Swordsmanship
--German Longsword & Italian Rapier in the DC Area--


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Michael Ahrens




Location: Staten Island & Andes NY
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PostPosted: Fri 25 Feb, 2011 10:07 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Congrats on the new school, Christopher. It is difficult starting your own school, believe me I know. We are going on our first year and it was totally worth all the BS that came before. so good luck, and if we here at S.I.G.M.A. can ever be of assistance, please feel free to contact us.


Mike Ahrens

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Scott Brown





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PostPosted: Fri 25 Feb, 2011 11:03 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Allen Foster wrote:
I always thought Fechtshule was German for Fencing School. If fencing school is wrong to use, then there are a lot of other groups using it.

Yes there are! Kinda' funny on one hand, especially for those that know better, and kinda' sad on the other. In some parts of Germany they get a bit of a giggle out of all the American groups doing this. Sort of becoming a cultural ignorance similar to Japanese people rolling their eyes at Westerner's thinking their ancestors perpetually ran around in their underwear shouting "hiya" all over the place.* You'll notice that most German groups use "kampfkuenste" or related modern terms for the names of their clubs.....

This all stems from the "literal" translation of fechtschule, "fight-school", which early on folks took to mean dojo/salle/fencing hall. Understandable, but in the last 5 or 6 years it's become apparent that it more accurately means an "event" rather than a "location", particularly for the eras in which Christopher's group is focusing upon. This is one of the reasons why we renamed the OIG to the Fechtschule America this year. We want to participate in the education process. Wink The unfortunate side of this is that the American WMA / HEMA communities don't always get this information at the same time as the European WMA / HEMA communities because so few American's travel to Europe at this point. (And why I make it a personal priority)

Conveniently, Matt Galas will be lecturing on fechtschulen at the upcoming Fechtschule America and, I believe, will be covering a lot of the etymological sides of all this. Shame Christopher can't make it because it might go a long way towards helping him clear up some details.





*This isn't entirely fair since even most of the German groups have only come to have a better grasp of this in the same 5 or 6 year period mentioned in the following paragraph.

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Scott Brown





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PostPosted: Fri 25 Feb, 2011 11:22 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Christopher VaughnStrever wrote:
I would love to attend the Fechtshule America, though my funds at this moment are spent furthering our Fechtshule. I have looked into the word Schimschule and could only find one source that actually held the word Fechtschule and Schimshule in the same context.

Well, I'm not sure where your level of linguistic and/or researching skills come in at so I can't really blame you if you're, like me, an amateur. Happy Technically, the earliest accounts that I'm aware of for the term "schirmschule" are Dutch/Flemish and usually spelled "skirmskule" or similar variants. I simply "German-o-philed" it to suit your clubs German-o-fantastic needs. Big Grin

Regardless, I get the sense that your club is focusing on 14th-15th century German martial arts so using a term now known to have a different context may end up as a source of embarrassment when dealing with native speakers. Yes, fechtschule was later used to indicate a location as was fechboden and even fechthalle. However, this directly speaks to a room or building, not the name of a club or organization. It's sort of like calling your club the "VaughStrever Master Bathroom"! What we don't find (as far as I'm aware) are historical organisations called the "Freifechter's Fechtschule" or the "Marxbrueder Fechtschule", which is effectively what you guys are going with currently.

I threw the idea of changing your name out there since your club is virginal and therefore easier to modify at this point. (In other words, you don't have gobs of website materials, t-shirts, and patches printed....) Obviously, it's your call where you draw the line at trying to align your club with the modern and historical contexts of all these matters. There is no hard and fast rule. Personally, I try as hard as possible to respect those cultures without sacrificing my own but, alas, I remain an imperfect human! Big Grin

Christopher VaughnStrever wrote:
I doubt I would actually change the name, however I would love to learn more about the actual meanings and references concerning Schimschule. I always like to learn the proper terms and understandings, that way I can always explain and point these things out so that I don't mislead myself, and thus mislead others.

See also my comments to Allen above, Matt Galas will be lecturing on this very topic at the Fechtschule America. Wink

All this aside, best of luck with your club and don't hesitate to work out some inter-club together sometime. We're not that far apart.

Best,

Scott

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Allen Foster





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PostPosted: Fri 25 Feb, 2011 11:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Scott Brown wrote:
Allen Foster wrote:
I always thought Fechtshule was German for Fencing School. If fencing school is wrong to use, then there are a lot of other groups using it.

Yes there are! Kinda' funny on one hand, especially for those that know better, and kinda' sad on the other. In some parts of Germany they get a bit of a giggle out of all the American groups doing this. Sort of becoming a cultural ignorance similar to Japanese people rolling their eyes at Westerner's thinking their ancestors perpetually ran around in their underwear shouting "hiya" all over the place.* You'll notice that most German groups use "kampfkuenste" or related modern terms for the names of their clubs.....

This all stems from the "literal" translation of fechtschule, "fight-school", which early on folks took to mean dojo/salle/fencing hall. Understandable, but in the last 5 or 6 years it's become apparent that it more accurately means an "event" rather than a "location", particularly for the eras in which Christopher's group is focusing upon. This is one of the reasons why we renamed the OIG to the Fechtschule America this year. We want to participate in the education process. Wink The unfortunate side of this is that the American WMA / HEMA communities don't always get this information at the same time as the European WMA / HEMA communities because so few American's travel to Europe at this point. (And why I make it a personal priority)

Conveniently, Matt Galas will be lecturing on fechtschulen at the upcoming Fechtschule America and, I believe, will be covering a lot of the etymological sides of all this. Shame Christopher can't make it because it might go a long way towards helping him clear up some details.

*This isn't entirely fair since even most of the German groups have only come to have a better grasp of this in the same 5 or 6 year period mentioned in the following paragraph.


Well now I'm really confused because most of the Swedish clubs have the word "Fäktskola" after their name (see link) http://www.shfs.se/. according to Roger Norling his club "Göteborgs Historiska Fäktskola" translates literally to "Gothenburg's Historical Fencing School". Isn't a Fäktskola and a Fechtschule the same thing?

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Christopher VaughnStrever




Location: San Antonio, TX
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PostPosted: Fri 25 Feb, 2011 11:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the info on that, I will be passing that info along to anyone new to our group, or anyone I'm telling about our group. I personally take this into context along with the lines of my suit of Armor and what I appear to be to the novice eyes' of people. "I look like a Knight, yes?" I ask them... and they say "of-course" and in reply I mention "If I was seen in the 15th century I would be a simple Man at Arms, a soldier if you will." I then go on to relate all the aspects that involve actually being a Knight, the crest, the official paid title, owner of land, and so on.

I as many out there cannot afford an exact reproduction suit of armor weighing in around 35-40lbs, however where my historical accuracy falls short I am clear to mention it. I personally like the "ring" our name has, though as mentioned I will clear the air before we step forward to anyone new.

That would be great to meet up some time for an inter-club meeting sometime. Where are you guys located?

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Allen Foster





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PostPosted: Fri 25 Feb, 2011 7:04 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have to agree with Scott Brown about going to Fechtshule America in Houston though. That is one weekend you will never regret if you can find a way to go. This is one of the premier events in America because the quality of the instructors teaching various Historical European weapon's systems are World class. It will kick start your new group like no other single thing you can do and put you ahead by light years.

If you go, I will arrange to hook you up with other Freifechters that are going so that you can split the cost of the hotel room if you want. Last year we split the cost of our room four ways and I got to know some really cool guys to boot. Also if you can drive, you eliminate the cost of airfare. Don't worry about equipment either, because there will be plenty of stuff to borrow.

Just Saying!

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Scott Brown





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PostPosted: Mon 28 Feb, 2011 2:54 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Allen Foster wrote:
Well now I'm really confused because most of the Swedish clubs have the word "Fäktskola" after their name (see link) http://www.shfs.se/. according to Roger Norling his club "Göteborgs Historiska Fäktskola" translates literally to "Gothenburg's Historical Fencing School". Isn't a Fäktskola and a Fechtschule the same thing?

I don't blame you, Allen! Linguistics is a fun but often slippery fish to handle. Happy

First point....A lot of Yank's lump "Swedish clubs" into a singular group but typically only have a passing familiarity with GHFS. In truth, there are dozens of other groups in Sweden but GHFS tends to get the most publicity in English speaking circles due to their, well deserved, physical prowess and record of success. With that in mind, I'd have to do some homework to concur that "most" Swedish groups use " Fäktskola" in their group titles. A handful I can think of off the top of my head do not but you're right, a handful of others do.....

Second point....I honestly don't have a functional knowledge of Swedish so I'm not really qualified to comment on nuances of language. Even less am I qualified to comment on words that have similar spellings, meanings, roots, and/or parallel's. I can bring this up to the Swede's attending Fechtschule America for discussion but I'll have to step out of the debate on an etymology level at this point.

If it matters, there are also a few Polish (and other European) groups using their own linguistic equivalents of fechtschule in their club names. However, in nearly all cases, including GHFS, most of these groups were founded quite a while back, presumably before a greater understanding of the word's true meaning was understood. My suspicion is that they adopted this moniker with an eye towards respecting the historical and cultural practices of the past.....based on their then current understandings. Perfectly understandable at the time. Now those groups are in the unenviable position of deciding whether to change the name they've worked hard to "brand" or allow the unintentional but embarrassing faux-paux to continue and inevitably perpetuate another "HEMA-myth".

This is why I mentioned all this to Christopher. He and his club are in a position to side step future embarrassment by simply modifying their name now while they are getting started and therefore provide a more accurate and historic perspective on the term. Of course, that is provided that this sort of thing in integral to their goals. (Which I obviously cannot comment on.)

Either way, it's their call and I wish them the best of luck as another emerging HEMA club. The more the merrier! Big Grin

Best,

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Scott Brown





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PostPosted: Mon 28 Feb, 2011 3:02 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Christopher VaughnStrever wrote:
I personally like the "ring" our name has, though as mentioned I will clear the air before we step forward to anyone new.

I hear ya'! Let's just hope everyone picks up what you're putting down.

Christopher VaughnStrever wrote:
That would be great to meet up some time for an inter-club meeting sometime. Where are you guys located?

Houston, mate. You can PM me here, Facebook, or the WMA Coalition forums and I'll be more than happy to set something up. Or you can cut out the middle man and get thee to the Fechtschule America for our first shindig/hootenanny/barnbuster!* Big Grin










*Err, cum fechtschule!? :P

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Scott Brown





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PostPosted: Mon 28 Feb, 2011 3:06 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Allen Foster wrote:
Don't worry about equipment either, because there will be plenty of stuff to borrow.

Just a point of clarification, if you want to borrow equipment you'll need to contact info@fechtschuleamerica.com to discuss the possibilities of doing so. Some weapons are being provided for certain classes (such as staffs) and other loaners are being provided for other classes only on an advance reservation basis year. Vendors will be on-site to purchase your own gear as well......if you're the kind of guy who like toys! Razz

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Christopher VaughnStrever




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PostPosted: Mon 28 Feb, 2011 7:52 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Scott, your really pushin' me to go! lol.

Seriously if I could get funds to go; I would. And maybe my group can contribute funds for me to attend, I would go and just sleep in my car if I had to. 175 for the event and about 250 in gas, about 425 total split 4 ways would be like... $105 per member in my group (I could afford 105 and just pack PB&J in my car) And I'd be there for sure... but, I doubt that would happen. I'll ask my guys, but from the sounds of peoples pocket books, that's why we are are a free fechtschule (Sorry for the improper word use there.

Unless we could have a sponsorship for me to go around.... That would be like winning the lottery for me! lol, I'll let you know when I wake up from dreaming.

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Axel Pettersson




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PostPosted: Tue 01 Mar, 2011 2:22 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi guys, in Swedish HEMA circles the use of the word "Fäktskola" as used by many clubs in their name today is not connected to "fechtshule" in any historical sense, we use it as a modern term.


The reason so many Swedish HEMA schools choose to call themselves "X historical fencing school" is because the Swedish Historical fencing Schools (SHFS) was a loose network of schools working together and naming ourselves in a similar way was an easy way of showing we belonged together. We have quite a few schools all over Sweden now and some new schools use the "X"-HFS name and others don't, but we all work together, and an official (i.e recognized and legal) federation is on its way.

That and because we just love acronyms (IKEA!)

/Axel, GHFS

P.S do yourself a huge favour and go to Fechtshule America, Allen is right it will inject you and your group with energy and enthusiasm to last you a long time, and propell your development in a major way. These large events really are the best thing anyone can experience when it comes to HEMA. If you have time over I and Anders Linnard can also sit down with you and explain the inner workings of Swedish HEMA terminology Cool .
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