As previously said, the TOURNAMENT was often a pretext to show the power and richness of a lord compared to others.
This TOURNAMENT in closed field is not an end in itself, and it can neither be merely related to a sporting event. What we wish to achieve by hosting this event is reenacting – as realistically as possible – a half/late XV century tournament on foot.
Let us not forget that documentation concerning tournaments on foot is really scarce, if not totally absent. Big tournaments were on horseback, of course, but for obvious reasons (money and logistics), it is not possible to take on this rather daunting challenge given the features we want the tournament to have. For this reason, we have decided to focus on the fringe activities relating to these events, that is to say combats on foot in closed field.
The rules come from a number of documents, more or less renowned, part of which relate to horseback combats, which will be adapted to the context and the goals we aim at achieving, with the participants’ safety in mind.
The tournament regulations take their cue from the chronicles of some TOURNAMENTS which took place between the XV and XVII century. There are no specific historical documents on this topic and the chronicles themselves often lack in information.
However, we have decided not to take our cue from treaties on historical fencing, not because we do not respect them, but because we aim at creating something different from what has been seen so far. We do not want to be bound to a specific current, but we would like to give participants freedom of stylistic and martial choices.
Renato d’Angiò himself, although he lists a series of rules in his treaty, explains that such rules had to be codified by the lord organizing the event. Our regulations are based on this principle.
Blows STRICKEN in the following body parts are considered valid:
ARMS AND LEGS = 1 point
CHEST = 2 points
HEAD = 3 points
In the event of simultaneous blows, the points are awarded only if the blows had started before the referee’s call.
In the event of simultaneous blows, the points are awarded on the difference of the blow.
BLUE hits the opponent’s chest (2 points); simultaneously, RED hits the opponent’s head (3 points).
RED gets 1 point.
BLUE hits the opponent’s arm (1 point); simultaneously, RED hits opponent’s leg (1 point).
Nobody gets any points.
Upon the referees’ whistle, the men-at-arms must stop all actions and retreat into their own corner.
The judges will then gather to decree the blow and will communicate it to the Notary, who will write it down on the register, and to the Field Herald who will inform the audience.
The judges’ verdict is final.
All blows or contact between MEN-AT-ARMS apart those made by using the BLADE or the SWORD.
Blows stricken INTENTIONALLY may be punished with ADMONITION or COMBAT LOSS.
All blows stricken with the TIP of the sword to the HEAD/NECK.
Blows stricken to the head with Cross-Guard or Pommel.
Blows to the back (when the blows starts and is stricken behind the opponent’s line).
Red hits hip and part of the opponent’s back due to White’s rotation or lateral movement: VALID.
Red leaps and is behind the opponent and hits the White’s back: RED IS ELIMINATED.
White turns his back to the opponent to induce him to hit his back: WHITE IS ELIMINATED.
First admonition: if the admonished person has some points, he loses one; if not, his opponent is awarded one.
Second admonition: the admonished person loses the combat
Any blows stricken with any other part except for the blade are admonished.
The MAN-AT-ARMS touching the fence is punished with admonition.
The MAN-AT-ARMS falling to the ground is penalized with admonition.
The jury is composed of the FIELD MASTER and at least 2 FIELD OFFICERS, together with a NOTARY and a FIELD HERALD, who do not have decision-making powers though.
The FIELD MASTER decrees the award of points by taking into account the Judges’ remarks; he also helps take decisions in case of doubt.
The FIELD MASTER is inside the fence along with the contenders. For this reason he is equipped with protection pads and a long stick in case he has to separate the contenders.
He takes care of the organization of the TOURNAMENT and the fringe activities taking place inside the FENCE.
The FIELD OFFICERS are the Judges checking that the combat is going well. They signal points and offences.
The NOTARY writes down all points and results and makes them official.
The FIELD HERALD informs the audience of the referees’ decisions.