L’Ange Style Rapiers by Darkwood

This photo shows a pair of L’Ange style rapiers by Darkwood Armory (except the lower pommel, which I made myself). The blades are 45”, which according to the translator puts it right around the author’s recommended length as estimated from the illustrations.

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L’Ange, says that the sword should be of moderate length. You may think of that a 51” sword is well past “moderate”, but the author Capoferro would recommend a 56” sword for someone of my stature.

We had our first lesson on L’Ange today and at first there was a lot of skepticism. Part of this derived from the blade length, as we are a Bolognese focused group accustomed to much shorter swords. The simple hilt also confused everyone, as it felt clumsy and dangerous to use a typical Italian grip with a finger over the quillon.

Once the proper, um.. “thumb grip?” was demonstrated most concerns evaporated. No one had any problems using his variant of Quarta for based thrusts. The sword felt lively in the hand and this style of grip allowed for remarkably fast disengages.

I say “most concerns” because the thrust in Third seemed to leave the top of the hand far too exposed. But given that we’re just starting out, this probably more of a technique issue more than a manual or equipment problem.

Lessons on the Thrust by L’Ange was translated by Reinier van Noort and is available from Purpleheart Armory.

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