L’Ange – Chapter 2 More on Quarta and Secunda

L’Ange begins with a salute, which I won’t repeat here. I will note that he warns to only use the salute in a friendly match, never when fighting in earnest.

Quarta

This guard is the most graceful and the most useful for defense.

Initial Quarta

  • The body is upright
  • The sword is held firmly close the to hilt
  • Arm is extended
  • Heels are together.

Transition into Proper Quarta

  • Extend the right foot forward one step
  • Keep the right leg straight, or even better, slightly bent so you are in a low posture
  • Bend the left knee
  • Keep the weight on the left foot so that you can easily move the right in order to thrust, feint, or pull back as necessary
  • The point of your sword, right foot, and left heel should be in a straight line.
  • Keep the left hand near the face so that you are ready to parry, grab the opponent’s sword, grapple, etc.

Secunda

This guard is useful for both attacking and defending.

Proper Secunda

  • Arm extended
  • Body forward
  • Head near the arm so you can’t be attacked over your sword
  • Look under your hilt for your opponent’s openings
  • Left hand is advanced below in front of your face
  • Right knee is bent
  • Left knee is extended, but feel free to bend it as necessary when breaking measure

Transition into Proper Quarta

  • Straighten the right knee somewhat, but not fully
  • Bend the rear knee
  • Swiftly turn the body [so that the left shoulder is behind]

Illustration

image

Note how the feet are narrower in this illustration, especially for quarta. Also, the quillons are closer to horizontal in this version.

Drill 1

This is inspired by L’Ange’s transition between the guards as summarized above.

  1. Stand at attention, sword by the left as if in a sheath
  2. Turn the left foot out while raising the sword in a salute
  3. Extend the arm into Initial Quarta
  4. Transition into Proper Quarta by extending the right leg without shifting the weight forward. Extend the left arm at the same time.
  5. Transition into Proper Secunda by shifting the weight forward while raising the sword and lowering the head. The left hand will lower slightly.
  6. Transition back into Proper Quarta by
  7. [Repeat the transitions between Quarta and Secunda several times, ending in Quarta]
  8. Retract the right leg into a salute
  9. Return to attention
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