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Drey Wunder

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In the German tradition of long sword fencing, the term drei wunder (lit "three wounders", but with an intended pun on "three wonders") refers to the three basic types of offensive action with the blade, viz. (1) the hau or "strike" (impact with the edge), (2) the stich or "thrust, stab" (impact with the point) and (3) the schnitt or "cut" (putting pressure on and performing a cutting movement with the edge).

The origin of this somewhat facetious term is unclear, it seems to first appear in Liechtenauer's zettel as recorded by the Fellowship of Liechtenauer masters from around the 1440s, but it is not present in the oldest version of this text (GNM 3227a). The context is the enumeration of the twenty-four kinds of winden. GNM 3227a has (fol. 39v):

VOn beiden seiten / ler acht wi~den mit schreite~ / Vnd io ir eyne / der wi~de~ mt drey~ stöcke~ meyne / So synt ir czwenczik • vnd vier / czele sy enczik
"from both sides learn eight winden with steps, and perform each with three techniques, so that there are twenty-four of them, enumerate them individually"

The "three techniques" (drei stücke) in the original zettel are commonly interpreted as the three offensive actions mentioned above. The drey stöcke of GNM3227a by conflation with the term winden among the masters in the Liechtenauer tradition apparently turned out as drei wunder by the 1440s.