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Augsburg, Germany (?)
|Paulus Hector Mair
|Early New High German
|Currently lost (1540s)
Antonius Rast (ca. 1470s - 1549) was a 16th century German fencing master and Captain of the Marxbrüder fencing guild from 1522 to 1523. Paulus Hector Mair is the primary source of information about his life, noting that Rast was a professional sword polisher as well as a certified 'Master of the Long Sword'. He began work on a fencing manual later in his life, but didn't complete it before his death in 1549; Mair purchased the manuscript in 1552 and created a completed version in 1553.
Other than Mair's notes, there are no certain records of Rast's life. The chronicle of the Marxbrüder guild found in the Codex I.6.2º.5 mentions that an 'Anthoni Resch' was made Captain in 1522, and includes an 'Anthoni Rasch' in a list of Masters of the Long Sword in 1534. Both of these are presumed to be references to Rast, as they correspond well with Mair's account and texts from this time period have frequent misspellings, but this is by no means certain.
Rast's writings are consistent with the complex of manuals known as the Augsburg Group, but since Paulus Hector Mair had access to the Bauman Fechtbuch when finishing Rast's treatise, it's difficult to make any statements about the nature of Rast's own teachings.
The version of Rast's writings prepared by Mair includes sections on armored foot combat, unarmored staff fencing, and mounted combat, none of which appear in earlier sources and which may have been composed by Rast himself. However, a version of the mounted fencing material is included in the 1590s manuscripts of Jeremias Schemel von Augsburg, intermingled with those of Jörg Wilhalm; Schemel's manuscripts omit one of Rast's plays (and the Vienna offers Wilhalm's version of a second one), but include captions for the pieces on ff 78v-80r which are uncaptioned in Rast. Furthermore, several of them were reproduced in a German reorganization of Federico Grisone's treatise on horsemanship printed in Augsburg in 1570. This may indicate that Rast was drawing on an earlier, unknown source for the mounted material, or even for all three of these sections.
That said, until such a source can be identified, all of the known versions will be compiled on this page.
Item: If someone stands against you in the short sword with armed hand and goes upon you, lay your sword upon your knee. If he then stabs you towards the face, then rise with your sword, and wind under him, as is pictured there, and don’t let him come to any work.
Item: Someone has stabbed towards your face as before, wind up with armed hand under his sword, and go indes, and wind your pommel over his left arm, as is pictured there, so you break his sword out of the hands.
The pommel is inwards in the inner elbow.
Item: If you stab someone above into the face, and he winds up under your sword, then grip nimbly to his blade with your left hand, and stab him with the sword to the face, as is pictured there.
Item: Take your sword with armed hand, and do as if you want to stab him to the face, and invert the sword, and strike him to the top of the head. If he parries the strike in his blade, pull his sword to yourself with the cross, and bash him in the [unreadable word] with the pommel, as is pictured there.
Item: If someone falls to your sword blade and you to him in his, if you then want to free your sword, wind his sword up with your left hand a little bit over your sword, and bash him to his hand with it, and pull your sword to yourself, as is pictured there, so he must release.
Item: Someone wants to wind over with your sword as such like before, catch with your sword, and lay the handle at the neck, and step behind him, as is pictured there, so you may throw him, and throw him on the back.
Item: Another play: If both swords are caught, wind your sword up with your right hand, and throw your pommel into his face, and grip him in front onto his right hand, and wind the sword out of the hand, as is pictured there.
Item: If someone wants to throw the pommel into your face as such, then follow up with your left hand, and go firmly indes, as is pictured there, so he may come to no work.
Item: If both swords are caught, wind up with your right hand over the head, and turn yourself around, and loop the sword through, and then pull your sword to yourself, then you will be free. If you want to counter that, as soon as he loops through, pull to yourself, as is pictured there, so he falls on the back.
Item: If someone stabs you above down with armed hand to the face, stab below up inwards into his glove, into the opening, and lead him away as such, so you will be able to stab or strike him in the face with your sword, as is pictured there.
Item: If someone runs upon you with large strikes, parry one or two, and suddenly fall through his foot with your sword, and lay yourself upon the pommel, and drive through, until he bleeds to death. If you want to ward it, see if you may win below his armpit or his face, as is pictured there.
Item: If someone runs upon and wants to strike down with violence, parry the strike with the sword, and set your left hand on his elbow, and move out with your pommel through the leg, and throw him over back, as is pictured there.
Item: If someone runs upon you with a blow, and wants to run to your face or onto your chest, set the blow aside with your sword, and go indes, and bash his sword away with your right [abichen] hand, and move with the arm around his neck, and step with your right foot behind him, as is pictured there, so you throw him on the back.
Item: If someone runs in, and wants to bash you on the head with the pommel, and force you above, then release your sword, and run through his right armpit with your head, and set your right foot behind his left, and force him over it with your head, as is pictured there.
Item: An underhold: If you have thrown him or made him fall, then turn him around onto his face, and step with your left foot on his left arm, and lay his fist in front of the shin, and hold him, and release the harness, as is pictured there.
Item: If you have made someone fall under, and want to distress him without a weapon, lay yourself athwart onto him, and lock his left arm below around him by the visor, and pull it up, as is pictured there, so he must surrender.
 Mark, one binds you with the staff, then remain firmly standing in the feeling, and go meanwhile and wind in above over his staff on the neck, as here depicted stands, and go fast in that he may not come to work.
 Mark, then one binds-on you above, and you feel that he will wind above over on the neck, then step quickly forwards with the left foot and strike his point away with your left point, as here depicted stands, and thrust the same point in his face.
 Mark, then you will wind one above, and he strikes your point away, then let your left hand drive from the staff, and let the staff go around, then you strike him on the head, as here depicted stands.
 Mark, one binds you above in long, then throw your staff and come in with the left point, and meanwhile go and grasp his staff in your hand, and wind through him, as here depicted stands.
 Mark, one binds on you above strongly, and will force you over with strength, then grasp his staff quickly to yours and clamp his fingers, and wind the staff in quickly on his neck. Wind, step behind him, as here depicted stands, then you throw him on the back.
 Mark, the setting-offs for the shooting are of three sorts, as is customary, they shall not be described here.
 This technique shall additionally also not be described.
 Mark, one binds on you very strongly and runs in on you, so run meanwhile with your head through, as stands described in the sword.
End the 8 standings in staff
[barely legible] Enndt der 8 stennd jm stenglin
New York Transcription (1838)
For further information, including transcription and translation notes, see the discussion page.
|Index:Rast Fechtbuch (Reichsstadt "Schätze" Nr. 82)
|Index:Reit und Turnierbuch (MS KK5247)
|Index:Confectbuch von Abrichtung vollständiges Turnierbuch (Cod.Guelf.1.6.3 Aug.2º)
|New York Version
|Index:Reit und Turnierbuch (MS 23.279)
- Lee, Lucien (2022). "Messerfecten from the Augsburg Tradition." Bauman's Fight Book: Augsburg University Library Ⅰ.6.4º 2: 129-156. Ed. by Michael Chidester. Medford, MA: HEMA Bookshelf. ISBN 978-1-953683-27-4.
- Walczak, Bartłomiej (2022). "Bauman Dagger Techniques and the Augsburg Group." Bauman's Fight Book: Augsburg University Library Ⅰ.6.4º 2: 103-128. Ed. by Michael Chidester. Medford, MA: HEMA Bookshelf. ISBN 978-1-953683-27-4.
- Zwischen der Abbildung der Kämpfer ist hier ein Text eingefügt, auf Vorlage schwer lesbar, von anderer Hand.
- „von stangen varn“ würde hier eigentlich mehr Sinn ergeben. Gegen ein „u“ spricht der fehlende Umlaut. „nn“ würde aber keinen Sinn ergeben. Die letzte Silbe könnte auch ein „er“ sein.
- Man könnte fast meinen, der Schreiber verliert langsam die Lust ;-)
- Vermutl. hat hier der Schreiber das „e“ vergessen.