Wiktenauer logo.png

Flos Duellatorum (Pisani Dossi MS)

From Wiktenauer
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Flos Duellatorum
Pisani Dossi MS, Museo archeologico Villa Pisani Dossi
Corbetta, Italy

Pisani-Dossi MS 01b.jpg
Pisani-Dossi MS 02a.jpg
Title page, fol. 1r
Date 10 February 1409
Place of origin Milan, Italy
Author(s) Fiore de'i Liberi
Scribe(s) Unknown
Illustrator(s) Michelino Molinari da Besozzo (or follower)
Dedicated to Niccolò III Marquis d'Este
Material Parchment, in a cardboard folder
Size 36 folia
Format Double-sided; two to six illustrations
per side, with text above
Treatise scans

Flos Duellatorum ("The Flower of Battle", Pisani Dossi MS) is a contemporary copy[1] of an Italian fencing manual authored by Fiore de'i Liberi and dated 10 February 1409.[2] The original was long believed to have been lost during World War II, but it is now known that it remained in the collection of the Pisani Dossi family and is currently housed in the Museo archeologico Villa Pisani Dossi in Corbetta, Italy. Novati described the Pisani Dossi MS as an unbound collection of leaves, covered in a cardboard folder with a marbled paper cover.[3] This manuscript is often referred to as the Novati (for the facsimile) or Pisani Dossi (for the original).

Like the MS Ludwig ⅩⅤ 13 (FLG), it is dedicated to Niccolò III, Marquis d'Este. It consists of approximately 35 leaves and includes two different prefaces, one in Renaissance Latin and a second in Friulian Italian with Viennese touches. The body of the text includes four to six illustrations per page, with gold leafing on the crowns and garters, each with only a brief couplet or quatrain in a neat Humanist hand to caption it.

The Pisani Dossi MS was published in facsimile by Francesco Novati in 1902, making it the only version of Fiore de'i Liberi's manual whose images are unequivocally public domain.


The known provenance of the Pisani Dossi MS is:[4]

  • Completed by Fiore de'i Liberi on 10 February, 1409. Though it was dedicated to Niccolò III d'Este, there is no evidence that it ever passed into his library.
  • before 1663 – belonged to Schier de' Prevosti da Valbregaglia, passed into the library of the Sacchi da Bucinigo family (purchased before 1902, Carlo Alberto Pisani Dossi).
  • before 1902-present – owned by the Pisani Dossi family.


As the foliation of the manuscript is not known, the carta numeration from Novati's facsimile will be used instead.

2a Latin Preface by Fiore de'i Liberi
2a - 2b Italian Preface by Fiore de'i Liberi
3a - 5b Grappling by Fiore de'i Liberi
5b Baton by Fiore de'i Liberi
6a - 12b Dagger by Fiore de'i Liberi
12b - 13a Four strikes of the sword by Fiore de'i Liberi
13a - 14b Sword in one hand by Fiore de'i Liberi
15a - 16b Spear by Fiore de'i Liberi
16b Seven Swords diagram by Fiore de'i Liberi
17a - 24b Sword in two hands by Fiore de'i Liberi
25a - 26b Sword in armor by Fiore de'i Liberi
27a - 28a, 36a Axe in armor by Fiore de'i Liberi
29a - 33b, 34b Mounted fencing by Fiore de'i Liberi
34a Spear vs. cavalry by Fiore de'i Liberi
35a - 36a Sword vs. dagger by Fiore de'i Liberi
36b Closing


These images are sourced from Francesco Novati's 1902 facsimile of the manuscript. The manuscript itself is in the private collection of the Pisani Dossi family in Italy, but is not available for study.

Carta 1a
Pisani-Dossi MS 01a.jpg
Carta 1b
Pisani-Dossi MS 01b.jpg
Carta 2a
Pisani-Dossi MS 02a.jpg
Carta 2b
Pisani-Dossi MS 02b.jpg
Carta 3a
Pisani-Dossi MS 03a.jpg
Carta 3b
Pisani-Dossi MS 03b.jpg
Carta 4a
Pisani-Dossi MS 04a.jpg
Carta 4b
Pisani-Dossi MS 04b.jpg
Carta 5a
Pisani-Dossi MS 05a.jpg
Carta 5b
Pisani-Dossi MS 05b.jpg
Carta 6a
Pisani-Dossi MS 06a.jpg
Carta 6b
Pisani-Dossi MS 06b.jpg
Carta 8a
Pisani-Dossi MS 08a.jpg
Carta 7a
Pisani-Dossi MS 07a.jpg
Carta 7b
Pisani-Dossi MS 07b.jpg
Carta 8b
Pisani-Dossi MS 08b.jpg
Carta 9a
Pisani-Dossi MS 09a.jpg
Carta 9b
Pisani-Dossi MS 09b.jpg
Carta 10a
Pisani-Dossi MS 10a.jpg
Carta 10b
Pisani-Dossi MS 10b.jpg
Carta 11a
Pisani-Dossi MS 11a.jpg
Carta 11b
Pisani-Dossi MS 11b.jpg
Carta 12a
Pisani-Dossi MS 12a.jpg
Carta 12b
Pisani-Dossi MS 12b.jpg
Carta 13a
Pisani-Dossi MS 13a.jpg
Carta 13b
Pisani-Dossi MS 13b.jpg
Carta 14a
Pisani-Dossi MS 14a.jpg
Carta 14b
Pisani-Dossi MS 14b.jpg
Carta 15a
Pisani-Dossi MS 15a.jpg
Carta 15b
Pisani-Dossi MS 15b.jpg
Carta 16a
Pisani-Dossi MS 16a.jpg
Carta 16b
Pisani-Dossi MS 16b.jpg
Carta 17a
Pisani-Dossi MS 17a.jpg
Carta 17b
Pisani-Dossi MS 17b.jpg
Carta 18a
Pisani-Dossi MS 18a.jpg
Carta 18b
Pisani-Dossi MS 18b.jpg
Carta 19a
Pisani-Dossi MS 19a.jpg
Carta 19b
Pisani-Dossi MS 19b.jpg
Carta 20a
Pisani-Dossi MS 20a.jpg
Carta 20b
Pisani-Dossi MS 20b.jpg
Carta 21a
Pisani-Dossi MS 21a.jpg
Carta 21b
Pisani-Dossi MS 21b.jpg
Carta 22a
Pisani-Dossi MS 22a.jpg
Carta 22b
Pisani-Dossi MS 22b.jpg
Carta 23a
Pisani-Dossi MS 23a.jpg
Carta 23b
Pisani-Dossi MS 23b.jpg
Carta 24a
Pisani-Dossi MS 24a.jpg
Carta 24b
Pisani-Dossi MS 24b.jpg
Carta 25a
Pisani-Dossi MS 25a.jpg
Carta 25b
Pisani-Dossi MS 25b.jpg
Carta 26a
Pisani-Dossi MS 26a.jpg
Carta 26b
Pisani-Dossi MS 26b.jpg
Carta 27a
Pisani-Dossi MS 27a.jpg
Carta 27b
Pisani-Dossi MS 27b.jpg
Carta 28a
Pisani-Dossi MS 28a.jpg
Carta 28b
Pisani-Dossi MS 28b.jpg
Carta 29a
Pisani-Dossi MS 29a.jpg
Carta 29b
Pisani-Dossi MS 29b.jpg
Carta 30a
Pisani-Dossi MS 30a.jpg
Carta 30b
Pisani-Dossi MS 30b.jpg
Carta 31a
Pisani-Dossi MS 31a.jpg
Carta 31b
Pisani-Dossi MS 31b.jpg
Carta 32a
Pisani-Dossi MS 32a.jpg
Carta 32b
Pisani-Dossi MS 32b.jpg
Carta 33a
Pisani-Dossi MS 33a.jpg
Carta 33b
Pisani-Dossi MS 33b.jpg
Carta 34a
Pisani-Dossi MS 34a.jpg
Carta 34b
Pisani-Dossi MS 34b.jpg
Carta 35a
Pisani-Dossi MS 35a.jpg
Carta 35b
Pisani-Dossi MS 35b.jpg
Carta 36a
Pisani-Dossi MS 36a.jpg
Carta 36b
Pisani-Dossi MS 36b.jpg

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.


  1. It does not match the descriptions of any of the fencing manuscripts in the d'Este library in the 15th century.
  2. Internally dated on carta 2a
  3. Novati, pp 29-30.
  4. Easton, Matt. "Fiore dei Liberi - Fior di Battaglia - Flos Duellatorum". Schola Gladiatoria. Retrieved 11 December 2015.

Copyright and License Summary

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

Work Author(s) Source License
Images Francesco Novati Flos Dvellatorvm in Armis, sine Armis, Eqvester, Pedester
Public Domain Contribution.png
Transcription Michael Chidester Index:Flos Duellatorum (Pisani Dossi MS)
Public Domain.png