George Silver. Paradoxes of Defence. London. 1599

(9) Conclusions

George Silver his military riddle, truly set down between the perfection and imperfection of fight. Containing the handling of the four fights, wherein true consists the whole sum and full perfection of the true fight, with all manner of weapons, with an invincible conclusion.

  1. Gardant fight stays, puts back, or beats gardant fight.
  2. Open fight stays, puts back, or beats open fight.
  3. Variable fight answers variable fight in the first distance, and not otherwise, except it be with perfect length against imperfect.
  4. Close fight is beaten by gardant fight.
  5. Variable close & gardant fight, beats gardant fight, open fight, variable fight, and close fight.
  6. Gardant fight in the imperfection of the agent or patient, wins the half sword, and presently the close, and whosoever first ventures the close, looses it, and is in great danger of death, and not possible to escape or get out again without great hurt.
  7. There attends most diligently upon these four fights four offensive actions, which we call certain, uncertain, first, before, just, and afterward. They are to be performed through judgement, time, measure, number and weight, by which all manner of blows thrusts, falses, doubles, or slips, are prevented, or most safely defended. And thus ends my riddle.
  8. Now follows the conclusion, that whosoever shall think or find himself in his fight too weak for the agent's, or patient agent, and therefore, or by reason of his drunkenness, or unreasonable desperateness shall press within the half sword, or desperately run in of purpose to give hurt, or at least for taking of one hurt, to give another, shall most assuredly be in great danger of death or wounds, and the other shall still be safe and go free.
Veritas vincit.

Released: November 09, 1998 / Last modified: December 12, 2008