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Christian Henry Tobler
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Location: Oxford, CT
Joined: 25 Aug 2003

Posts: 693

PostPosted: Wed 15 Apr, 2020 12:15 pm    Post subject: Tilitz??         Reply with quote

Hello all,

Does anyone know what German weapon a 'tilitz' is? It's mentioned in a list of weapons that Maximilian trained with in Der Weisskünig, right after the 'messer'. It appears elsewhere as 'digliz' or 'tilniz'.

Some writers have interpreted it to be a langes messer, but given the ambiguities I've encountered in old dictionaries, I am not prepared to swear by that.

Anyone have an information?

Thanks!

Christian

Christian Henry Tobler
Order of Selohaar

Freelance Academy Press: Books on Western Martial Arts and Historical Swordsmanship

Author, In Saint George's Name: An Anthology of Medieval German Fighting Arts
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Radovan Geist




Location: Slovakia
Joined: 19 Aug 2010
Likes: 5 pages

Posts: 388

PostPosted: Wed 15 Apr, 2020 11:46 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dear Christian, it´s an interesting question. The form "tilniz" reminded me of a Czech word "tulich" (the "ch" should be read +/- like "J" in Spanish "Jorge") which is an old term for a dagger / knife, usually with a strong shortish thrusting blade (imagine a short sturdy rondel; a similar replica is actually offered by one of the Czech manufacturers under the tame "tulich": https://www.fabri-armorum.com/cs/p/dyka-tulich/)
That made me think & search along these lines and after a quick search I have found at least two instances which seem to support this:

This Early-German dictionary defines the word "tiliz" as a dagger, stabbing dagger, lists several alternative forms (incl. diglitz/tilnitz) and gives some examples from contemporary sources: https://fwb-online.de/lemma/tiliz.s.0m

And this book fro end-18th C on the history of Nurnberg lists "digliz" among weapons mentioned in a document from 1497 (p. 347), giving an explanation that "this weapon is unknown and could probably mean a stillet (dagger)": https://books.google.sk/books?id=BJ9YAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA347&lpg=PA347&dq=%22diglitz%22&source=bl&ots=FxAMNff59y&sig=ACfU3U1RMfTVXjFr3CvVgh7TiDRPW0wXsQ&hl=sk&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwic_qnOt-zoAhUGNOwKHXABDBIQ6AEwCXoECAsQPg#v=onepage&q&f=false

A more profound search of digitalised archives could produce better result, but I would say that tilitz/digliz... means a "thrusting dagger" (but I would take it with a pinch of salt:)).
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Bartek Strojek




Location: Poland
Joined: 05 Aug 2008
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PostPosted: Thu 16 Apr, 2020 2:26 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

In Polish, there's tulich as well, and the meaning's about the same.


More importantly, there's tylec, meaning some kind of dagger as well, and formally tylec and tilitz would be almost identical.

The word appears in the end of XV century in the list of arms and armor in possession of some Kraków's townsfolk, arms of militia from Sandomierz, for example.

There's also tylczyk, which looks like diminutive variant, tylec + yk suffix. It appears in Marcin Bielski 1567 poem, as a part of war gear.

Sadly, I don't think that any more detailed description exists.

Here, I've found the book which mentions tylec as well. Can't read Czech well, but it seems that it mostly says the same thing, that tylec is some kind of a dagger/dussack.

https://www.academia.edu/9283312/Dussacks_and_issue_of_single-edged_weapons_of_Medieval_and_Early_Modern-Age_Tesáky_a_problematika_jednosečných_zbraní_středověku_a_raného_novověku



As far as origin of a word, it's hard to say.

Theoretically, it's easily explained as polish tył (meaning "back, rear") with ec suffix.

It's kinda sketchy semantically, but in later Polish tylec indeed appears as a back, rear, blunt, side of a knife or other tool.

"Tylec noża" - "backside of a knife".

So theoretically, we could have transfer of name from part of a knife/dagger to a knife itself?

If so, we could speculate the it could mean single edge dagger with pronounced spine, but that's of course guessing based on a guess. Big Grin

In other Slavic languages, tyl means the only back of the head, neck, original meaning, only in Polish the meaning changed into more general one, today it's the main word used meaning "back/rear".


Alternatively, tylec/tilitz and mentioned tulich/dolch may be all variants of the same word, but one would have to study it to explain differences in form.


And as far as dolch/tulich goes, it seems that the word is even more cryptic, with no known etymology.[/b]
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Sean Manning




Location: Austria
Joined: 23 Mar 2008

Posts: 536

PostPosted: Fri 17 Apr, 2020 2:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

When I have problems like this, I start by searching lexica for examples of use, then I put them all together and track them down one by one and read the full text of each. Matthias Lexer and Gerhard Köbler both seem to be leaning on the Gebrüder Grimm for their examples of this word so I would start with them.

I like the idea that it could be the same word as dolch but I do not have a good feeling for Germanic philology.

www.bookandsword.com
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Iagoba Ferreira





Joined: 15 Sep 2008

Posts: 173

PostPosted: Fri 17 Apr, 2020 3:20 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That sounds very close to kiliç (sword) in Turkish... Surprised
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Christian Henry Tobler
Industry Professional



Location: Oxford, CT
Joined: 25 Aug 2003

Posts: 693

PostPosted: Fri 17 Apr, 2020 3:06 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Good stuff here, thanks!

Here some other stuff I found or had sent my way:

From a local 15th century law on fines for drawing weapons:

Ob ainer uber den andern ain swert, messer, hackn, stecken, spies, degen, stecher, tiliz oder anderlai weer oder waffen auszuckät...

And from an old post from my colleague Jens-Peter Kleinau (his Facebook post shows an early precursor to the bayonet):

A Tüllmesser, or Tillmesser (Tilitz, Diglitz, Tillitz) of the late 16th or early 17th century. A popular weapon for hunting and later for war. These kind of knifes started their carreer in the 15th century or even earlier on hunting the Apline chamois (Gamsjagd) (Emperor Maximilian had 18 of those in his hunting box at Ehrenberg) In the mountains everything you carry must be calculated as weight. So they were knifes that could be mounted on staffs to become a spear head. For hunting the chamois the staffs could be mounted to a very long spear of 5-7 meters. So reaching places a human could not climb. In later times these knifes were mounted on rifles to give the final thrust after wounding the animal with a bullet. Even more later it became a weapon of war until today.

Jens' take might be the best for what I'm looking for, as my inquiry stems from Maximilian's work, but of course terms shift in meaning over time as well.

All the best,
Christian

Christian Henry Tobler
Order of Selohaar

Freelance Academy Press: Books on Western Martial Arts and Historical Swordsmanship

Author, In Saint George's Name: An Anthology of Medieval German Fighting Arts
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