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Wednesday (Manciolino)

Submitted by Ludwig von Rege... on August 31, 2011 - 12:00am

Giocco Stretto (close-in fighting) from Manciolino.

We returned to the first two Strette starting true edge to true edge (see last week's blog entry).  In both cases the initial attack is a Reverso, which means we must decide whether to cut over or into the opponent's sword, or start the attack by disengaging underneath.  Both seem plausible (which might be why it's not specified), but in both cases going underneath seems the weaker (and more dangerous) option.  However, the prescribed counters only seem to make sense if the attack starts from underneath; cutting over or into traps the defender's weapons.

Footwork continues to be an issue, however gathering the front-foot and then stepping out again with it (a common pattern in the first Assalto) seems to be a good option in some cases.

  • Fifth Stretta, True Edge on True Edge
    • Pass withyour left foot towards his left side while feinting a Riverso; then, pass back with your left foot and stike him with a Fendente to the head.
      • This is the first example we've seen with a cross-line pass.  Leoni notes that "[a cross-line pass] may also be followed by an additional pass, often in the same direction."  In this case you immediately pass back, which might be the key to understanding this Stretta.  The opponent is expecting you to keep travelling in the same direction (to his left), but you instead go back the way you came.
    • Counter: As he feints the Riverso, do not move.  As he turns the Fendente to your head, deliver an ascending Riverso that goes up into Guardia di Testa.
      • This is an example of the apparent teleology common in Manciolino: why don't you need to defend against the Riverso?
  • Sixth Stretta, False Edge on False Edge
    • If you have the right foot forward, pass with your left foot towards his right side, hit his sword-hand with your buckler-hand (to your outside), and finish with a Riverso to his neck or head.
      • Note "buckler-hand", not buckler.
    • Counter: As he passes forward...hit him in the incoming arm with your buckler-rim.
      • Seemed pretty effective.

Question: Why do the False on False Strette have both right and left foot forward situations, but the True edge Strette have only right foot forward situations?

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