Jake Norwood – Workshop – ‘Gemeynes Fechten: A Theoretical “Common Fencing”’

Liechtenauer tells us not to do what the “common fencers do”…but what did they do, and why was it common? Because it works!

Weapon: Longsword

Source: Fechtregeln/Kölner, with additional references to Paurnfeindt, Egenolph, Meyer, von Baumann, Fiore, and assorted Liechtenauer Glosses

This workshop explores the “Kölner Fechtbuch” and other sources as representative of a theoretical reconstruction of 15th‐16th century Germanic Gemeynes Fechten, or “Common Fencing” with the longsword. Inspired by Liechtenauer’s admonition not to do as “common fencers” do, the Gemeynes Fechten consists of techniques and solutions to fencing problems that are thought to have been universal to longsword fencers throughout the time period.
Participants will learn foundational techniques and strategies for fencing in this style, which is perfect for introducing new students to Germanic longsword fencing and even better as a lens through which to understand the problems that Liechtenauer’s more advanced art was built to address.

Skill level of Participants: Any skill level, though some experience with the longsword in any system will be helpful.
Needed Equipment: Mask, longsword, and minimal protective gear for light sparring (protective gloves, gorget)

About the trainer – Jake Norwood

Jake Norwood has been studying, practicing, and teaching Historical European Martial Arts since 2000.
Once a household name in American and European HEMA circles, Jake created and ran Longpoint, the western Hemisphere’s largest HEMA tournament and workshop series, from 2010‐ 2019; was a founding member and first president of the HEMA Alliance from 2009‐2012; and was North America’s most consistently successful competitive fencer with over 50 medals in Longsword, Messer, Saber, Cutting, and Technique from 2011‐2016. Jake is a fanatic Liechtenauerist, a pioneer in recreating Germanic “Common Fencing” from the 15th‐16th centuries, and an avid harness‐fencer who’s currently focused on reproducing the HEMA Experiment at the Military Unit Scale through the bi‐annual Feldlager event and related endeavors.
Jake, an American who lives in the Netherlands, is also a two‐time veteran of the Iraq war and former
independent tabletop roleplaying game designer.