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Scienza d’Arme (Salvator Fabris)

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Scienza d’Arme
The Science of Arms
Scienza d’Arme (Fabris) Title 1.png
Author(s) Salvator Fabris
Illustrated by
Dedicated to Christian Ⅳ of Denmark
Place of origin Copenhagen
Language Italian
Genre(s) Fencing manual
Sources GI.kgl.Saml.1868 4040 (1601)
Publisher Henrico Waltkirch
Publication date 1606, 1619, 1622, 1624, 1650, 1672,
1676, 1713
First english
edition
Leoni, 2005
Pages 256 pages
Treatise scans

De lo Schermo, overo Scienza d’Arme ("On Defense, or the Science of Arms") or Sienza e Pratica d’Arme ("Science and Practice of Arms") is an Italian fencing manual written by Salvator Fabris in the 1590s and printed in 1606. It treats the use of the rapier, both solo and in conjunction with the cloak, dagger, and rotella shield; it also discusses unarmed defenses against the dagger. Fabris's treatise is one of the most influential rapier manuals in history, reprinted many times and copied or expanded by numerous other authors.

Publication History

Scienza d’Arme was first printed in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1606 by Henrico Waltkirch. It was based on Fabris' earlier manuscript treatise Scientia e Prattica dell'Arme (GI.kgl.Saml.1868.4040); the text was rewritten in a more flowery style, and the artwork of the manuscript (which was drawn from life) was redrawn in an exaggerated, classical style. It included a title page and portraits engraved by Nicolaus Andrea of Flensburg, heraldry and most illustrations by Christian Ⅳ's court artist Jan van Halbeeck, and additional illustrations by Francesco Valesio. At some point, probably immediately after the printing, a second title page was created with a much longer title (using the same decorative frame as the original but masking out and replacing the original text); this was added as a second title page to some copies and replaces the original title page in others (perhaps because some of the original title pages were damaged and unusable).[1]

In 1624, unsold copies of the first edition were apparently acquired by Pietro-Paolo Tozzi in Fabris' native Padua, who replaced damaged pages from the first signature and released them under the title Della vera pratica et scienza d’armi. The publication information at the back of the book was further covered by a decorative paper patch.

The first translation of Fabris was in 1619, a German edition published in Leiden by Isack Elzevier under the title Des Kunstreichen Italiänische Fechtkunst ("The Illustrated Italian Art of Fencing"); this version also replaced the elaborate copperplate engravings of the original with rudimentary woodblock figures. This edition was reissued in Nuremberg in ca. 1650. Another German translation was produced in ca. 1635, but was never published and only survived in the MS Dresd.C.94a.

In 1622, book II of Fabris' treatise received another German translation and its first French translation, which were published in Frankfurt by Jacob de Zeter. This the first multilingual and parallel text edition of Fabris' work. Zeter included this work as book II of his 1619 translations of Nicoletto Giganti's 1606 treatise Scola, overo teatro ("School or Theater"), which he published in separate French and German editions titled Escrime Novvelle ov Theatre ("New Fencing or Theater") and Newe Fechtkunst Oder Schawplatz ("New Fencing Art or Show Place") respectively, both of which contained both translations of the text. This has oddly lead various fencing historians to accuse Giganti himself of plagiarism.[2] Unsold copies were sold as a new edition, including a new title page but merely covering the year 1622 on the title of Fabris' section with a slip of paper saying "1644".

In 1676, Johann Joachim Hynitzsch published an Italian-German parallel text in Leipzig titled Sienza e pratica d'arme. This edition included yet another German translation, either by Hynitzsch or possibly his teacher, Hans von und zum Felde, as well as a preface in which he denigrated all prior German publications on Fabris (specifically mentioning the translations of Elzevier and Zeter and the derivative works of Hans Wilhelm Schöffer and Sebastian Heußler). There is evidence that this translation was circulated in multiple manuscripts prior to publication. Hynitzsch's edition was reprinted in Leipzig in 1713.

Fabris' treatise was translated into English by A. F. Johnson in the early 1900s; multiple typescripts were produced of the final draft, but it was not published until the HEMA Bookshelf edition of 2022. A second English translation was produced by Tom Leoni and published by Chivalry Bookshelf in 2005 under the title The Art of Dueling: Salvator Fabris' Rapier Fencing Treatise of 1606; this was reprinted (without its introductory material) through a self-publishing service in 2016. In 2010, it was translated into Spanish by Eugenio Garcia-Salmones and published under the title La esgrima o la ciencia de las armas ("Fencing, or the Science of Arms").

Contents

1 - 76 Book 1 part 1 - Rapier by Salvator Fabris
76 - 133 Book 1 part 2 - Rapier and dagger by Salvator Fabris
134 - 149 Book 1 part 3 - Rapier and cloak by Salvator Fabris
151 - 218 Book 2 part 1 - Rapier by Salvator Fabris
218 - 242 Book 2 part 2 - Rapier and dagger by Salvator Fabris
243 - 256 Book 2 part 3 - Grappling, dagger, and cloak

Gallery

Title pages

First title (1606)
Scienza d’Arme (Fabris) Title 1.png
Second title (1606)
Scienza d’Arme (Fabris) Title 2.jpg
1619 German
Fabris 1619 Title.png
1522 French/German
Fabris 1622 Title.jpg
1624 Italian
Fabris 1624 I Title.jpg
1644 French/German
Fabris 1644 Title.png
1650 German
1672 Latin
1677 Italian/German
Fabris 1677 Title.png
1713 Italian/German
Fabris 1713 Title.jpg


Illustrations

Heraldry
Scienza d’Arme (Fabris) Heraldry.jpg
Christian Ⅳ
Scienza d’Arme (Fabris) Portrait 1.jpg
Salvator Fabris
Scienza d’Arme (Fabris) Portrait 2.jpg
Cutting diagram
Scienza d’Arme (Fabris) Segno.jpg
Figure 1
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Figure 2
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Figure 3
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Figure 4
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Figure 5
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Figure 6
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Figure 7
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Figure 8
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Figure 9
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Figure 10
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Figure 11
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Figure 12
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Figure 13
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Figure 14
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Figure 15
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Figure 16
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Figure 17
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Figure 18
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Figure 19
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Figure 20
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Figure 21
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Figure 22
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Figure 23
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Figure 24
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Figure 25
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Figure 26
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Figure 27
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Figure 28
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Figure 29
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Figure 30
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Figure 31
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Figure 32
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Figure 33
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Figure 34
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Figure 35
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Figure 36
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Figure 37
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Figure 38
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Figure 39
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Figure 40
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Figure 41
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Figure 42
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Figure 43
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Figure 44
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Figure 45
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Figure 46
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Figure 47
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Figure 48
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Figure 49
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Figure 50
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Figure 51
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Figure 52
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Figure 53
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Figure 54
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Figure 55
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Figure 56
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Figure 57
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Figure 58
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Figure 59
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Figure 60
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Figure 61
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Figure 62
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Figure 63
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Figure 64
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Figure 65
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Figure 66
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Figure 67
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Figure 68
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Figure 69
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Figure 70
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Figure 71
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Figure 72
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Figure 73
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Figure 74
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Figure 75
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Figure 76
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Figure 77
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Figure 78
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Figure 79
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Figure 80
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Figure 81
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Figure 82
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Figure 83
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Figure 84
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Figure 85
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Figure 86
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Figure 87
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Figure 88
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Figure 89
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Figure 90
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Figure 91
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Figure 92
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Figure 93
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Figure 94
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Figure 95
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Figure 96
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Figure 97
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Figure 98
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Figure 99
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Figure 100
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Figure 101
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Figure 102
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Figure 103
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Figure 104
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Figure 105
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Figure 106
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Figure 107
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Figure 108
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Figure 109
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Figure 110
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Figure 111
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Figure 112
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Figure 113
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Figure 114
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Figure 115
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Figure 116
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Figure 117
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Figure 118
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Figure 119
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Figure 120
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Figure 121
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Figure 122
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Figure 123
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Figure 124
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Figure 125
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Figure 126
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Figure 127
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Figure 128
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Figure 129
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Figure 130
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Figure 131
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Figure 132
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Figure 133
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Figure 134
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Figure 135
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Figure 136
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Figure 137
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Figure 138
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Figure 139
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Figure 140
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Figure 141
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Figure 142
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Figure 143
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Figure 144
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Figure 145
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Figure 146
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Figure 147
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Figure 148
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Figure 149
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Figure 150
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Figure 151
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Figure 152
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Figure 153
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Figure 154
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Figure 155
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Figure 156
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Figure 157
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Figure 158
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Figure 159
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Figure 160
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Figure 161
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Figure 162
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Figure 163
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Figure 164
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Figure 165
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Figure 166
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Figure 167
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Figure 168
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Figure 169
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Figure 170
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Figure 171
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Figure 172
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Figure 173
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Figure 174
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Figure 175
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Figure 176
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Figure 177
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Figure 178
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Figure 179
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Figure 180
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Figure 181
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Figure 182
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Figure 183
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Figure 184
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Figure 185
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Figure 186
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Figure 187
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Figure 188
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Figure 189
Scienza d’Arme (Fabris) 189.jpg
Figure 190
Scienza d’Arme (Fabris) 190.jpg

Windsor variant

An apparently-unique copy of Fabris owned by a private collector in UK has the title page and dedication from the first dition, but the entire second signature and one sheet from the third signature were replaced for unknown reasons, apparently prior to the original binding; the type was reset for the replacement pages and the page breaks don't quite align with the original. These pages are included below.

7
Fabris Windsor 007.jpg
8
Fabris Windsor 008.jpg
9
Fabris Windsor 009.jpg
10
Fabris Windsor 010.jpg
11
Fabris Windsor 011.jpg
12
Fabris Windsor 012.jpg
13
Fabris Windsor 013.jpg
14
Fabris Windsor 014.jpg
15
Fabris Windsor 015.jpg
16
Fabris Windsor 016.jpg
17
Fabris Windsor 017.jpg
18
Fabris Windsor 018.jpg
19 (standard)
20 (standard)
21 (standard)
22 (standard)
23
Fabris Windsor 023.jpg
24
Fabris Windsor 024.jpg
25
Fabris Windsor 025.jpg
26
Fabris Windsor 026.jpg

1624 edition

The second edition was apparently created using unsold copies of the first edition. The inner and outer sheets of the first signature (including the title page) were replaced, possibly due to damage to all remaining books. The replacement pages are included below. Additionally, the colophon on the final page was covered up with a decorative paper patch.

A1
Fabris 1624 I Title.jpg
A1v
Fabris 1624 A1v.png
A2 (standard)
A2v (standard)
A3
Fabris 1624 A3r.png
A3v
Fabris 1624 A3v.png
1
Fabris 1624 001.png
2
Fabris 1624 002.png
3 (standard)
4 (standard)
5
Fabris 1624 005.png
6
Fabris 1624 006.png
256
Fabris 1624 256.png


Additional Resources

The following is a list of publications containing scans, transcriptions, and translations relevant to this article, as well as published peer-reviewed research.

None.

References

  1. Of 24 copies surveyed by Michael Chidester, 14 had only the first title page, 3 had only the second title page, 6 had both title pages, and 1 had neither (instead, a second copy of page 151 was glued into the beginning of the book to serve as a title page).
  2. This accusation was first made by Johann Joachim Hynitzsch (see below), who attributed the edition to Giganti rather than Zeter and was incensed that he gave no credit to Fabris.

Copyright and License Summary

For further information, including transcription and translation notes, see the discussion page.

Work Author(s) Source License
Images Nicolaus Andrea of Flensburg, Jan van Halbeeck, Francesco Valesio Guy Windsor
Public Domain.png
Transcription (1606) Michael Chidester Index:Scienza d’Arme (Salvator Fabris) 1606
CCBYNCSA30.png
French Translation (1619) Index:Escrime Novvelle ou Theatre (Salvator Fabris) Book 2
CCBYSA30.png
German Translation (1677) Alex Kiermayer Index:Sienza e pratica d'arme (Johann Joachim Hynitzsch)
Copyrighted.png