Dagger - 5th Master

Dagger – 6th scholar of the 5th master

Folio 15 r. b

Translation

In this way you will go to the ground without fail. And no lying, I will take your dagger. If you are in armour, it is good for you, because with your own dagger I will take your life. If we are armoured, this art cannot fail. Although if you are unarmoured and very quick, there are other plays I can also make.

Explanation

Throwing the leg like this is a highly effective, yet somewhat difficult technique to perform. The difficulty is not so much a technical one, but more of a strategic issue. If you are bending over low enough to perform this play, you will be quite exposed. It is less a technique to apply with any planning, but more something to keep in reserve to get yourself out of a tight situation where you are being overwhelmed by an aggressive opponent. Under such circumstances, this play is an excellent method of regaining the advantage.

The context of this play is typically a fight which has been proceeding at speed and very close range. Notice there is no room for the opponent to step through as they stab. So as to effectively reach your opponents leg, your opponents front foot needs to be at least level with yours. If you attempt this at too long a range, your cover will not work and you wil be stabbed in the back.

Make a hooking block with your right hand and grab your opponents dagger wrist. You do not need to do anything fancy with it. Just keep it away from you so you do not get stabbed. Keeping your back straight, duck down and quickly swing your left arm under your opponents left thigh. This works best if they are in a reasonably long stance. As your shoulders move back to square, their leg will be lifted up and pulled towards the centreline, as the picture shows.

There is no need to lift it high off the ground. It is the lateral movement which makes most of the throw. Your opponent will twist and fall on their back with their arms flailing all over the place to your right side. Strip the dagger as they fall and finish them off before they have time to recover.

You will see the same technique being used on the opposite side of the body by the following plays.

  • Dagger – 9th scholar of the 1st master
  • Dagger – 3rd scholar of the 4th master

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