Tabula VII

Working against the Straight Line

Once Zachary has seen Alexander’s manner of making approaches against the straight line, subjecting the opposing sword at the Second Instance, with all that depends on it, he begins to put himself once again in the same posture, with the intention of putting Alexander’s approaches to the test, and working against them in every way he can. In the preceding Tabula, he has done nothing against Alexander except what he was constrained to do by necessity, for the simple defense of his person. In the present Tabula, however, he proposes to thwart the approach of his adversary with several estocades, made during the beginning, the continuation, and the end of the subjection of his sword: seizing the time when Alexander raises his right foot, or when he advances it toward the Second instance while still holding it in balance, or when he lowers it with the shifting of his weight, or when he puts it on the ground, or when he has already arrived. Alexander, knowing nothing of this intention, begins to work again in the straight line in the same manner as before, putting himself at the First Instance on the other side of the circle, with his sword similarly in a straight and parallel line beneath the other.


The principle that the student ought to keep in the practice of the present Tabula is that of seizing the time exactly, which is one of the most important points of the entire exercise, and without which none of it can be practiced with grace or assurance. For if Hippocrates, the prince of physicians, went so far as to pronounce that the right occasion in medicine is difficult to observe and to seize, even though it lasts for days or at least for whole hours, with much stronger reason we are able to say that it is even more sudden and difficult in the exercise of arms, where it often lasts no more than a moment of time, and often present itself for nothing but a simple instant, which is a point of time that is indivisible and of no duration at all. Thus there is a time in which one finds the occasion, but very few occasions in which one finds the time.


Therefore, to those who seek to come to the high goal of understanding and exactly seizing the time, I offer a warning that they should not take it for granted, and that it must cause them boredom to put a long period of exercise into the use of the present lessons of Tabula VII. Beyond the assurance that these will give them in the perfect theory and practice of arms, they will also be enough, almost by themselves, to enter the lists with the greatest and strongest fighters they are able to find, provided that these latter do not make use of sentiment; for since they are not accustomed to have the swords in contact, and indeed may find themselves entangles forthwith, they should always make it their duty to separate the swords before theirs can be subjected. Ordinarily in this case there appear almost no other operations besides those you see represented in this chapter, so that the time put into it cannot be better spent.

Circle N. 1

Tabula VII Circle One Plan View


Begins in the straight line, sword above Alexander’s.


Raises Right Foot (Knee Straight) while Raising his point 8, against Zachary’s 3 pause advancing, turning quillon vertical inward, hastens to enter at “G”, left foot at the same instant, slowly and circularly with leg straight.


If during the process of subjection the enemy weakens, Alexander shall extend arm and sword at an obtuse angle at opponents face, with advancement of the upper body.


Work always with equally proportioned weight of opponents blade.


Recognize opponent’s actions by contact, matching sentiment with body, arm and feet movement equally.


Do not move to the 2nd Instance without the assurance of properly executed subjection.

Refer to Circle Four then Two

Tabula VII Circle One

Alexander subjects the opposing sword at the Second Instance inside the arm, proceeding with great circumspection to lift the right foot while crossing swords, to advance the foot while degraduating, to carry the blades across and to duly take the superiority, planting his foot on the ground in the place and with the exactness requisite, and following it slowly and circularly with the other foot until he stands straight upon his legs again.

Circle N. 2

Tabula VII Circle Two Plan View


Continued from Circle One: Intends to subject opponents blade at second instance. Raising his right foot, placing foible against opponents forte, right foot steeps over to letter “G”.


Cuts under opponent blade (as Alexander shifts to 2nd Instance). Makes estocade against face, with a stiff arm, advancing to letter “V”.


Right foot towards 2nd Instance, crosses Zachary’s sword, graduates it, placing himself in profile, arresting point before Zachary’s eyes, with courtesy.

Alternate to Circle Four

Tabula VII Circle Two

At the instant Alexander’s right foot begins to fall toward the ground, Zachary starts to make an estocade at his face on the inside. Alexander forestalls this before Zachary finishes cutting under the blade, by entering further in and graduating his own blade, with the arm stiff and the point directed against Zachary’s face. 

Circle N. 3

Tabula VII Circle Three Plan View


Advancing body graduating blade, arm stiff, right foot to center, bending knee placing body weight above right foot, left foot following almost to letter “G”, forcing Zachary to bend his elbow.


forced to give way, bend his elbow, and let his blade go off to the side.

Continued from Circle Two

Tabula VII Circle Three

Alexander, making the execution of the estocade with rigor, overpowers the opponent’s arm and sword, entering up to the center and thrusting his sword with all his strength through the head of his adversary.

Circle N. 4

Tabula VII Circle Four Plan View


Continued from Circle One: Intends to subject opponents blade at second instance. Raising his right foot, placing foible against forte. Right foot steeps towards letter “G”.


Cuts under the blade and makes a resolute estocade against Alexander’s face, with stiff arm on the outside, advancing right foot to letter “R”.


as Zachary sword detaches, extends his arm against Zachary’s face, point rising crossing and deflecting blade to the outside line, while leaning backwards, body in profile, steeps back with right foot to letter “E” left foot to letter “C”, leaning back on the far side of the diameter.


If Zachary cuts under after subjection, step leaning back right foot to letter “E”, left foot to C. Sword circularly across opponent’s(follow the sword).


If the cut is made as Alexander’s foot begins to fall refer back to Circle Two.

Referred from Circle One

Tabula VII Circle Four

Just as Alexander begins to try to cross swords, Zachary makes an estocade at him outside the arm against his face, but he is himself surprised and wounded by Alexander, who deflects his movement a little to the outside and closes the straight line to Zachary.

Circle N. 5

Tabula VII Circle Five Plan View


Right foot to the diameter, arm stiff and shifting weight forward, left coming up from behind, Striking hilt so forcefully that Zachary bends his arm.


Constrained to bend his arm and to let his point go up at an obtuse angle.

Continued from Circle Four

Tabula VII Circle Five

This is the execution of the preceding, carried out in conformity with the others.

Circle N. 6

“Tabula VII Circle Six Plan View”


Subjects opponents blade at the second instance (Circle One).


Cut under the blade, arm extended, right foot between V and R.


Extends arm and sword in a straight line, as Zachary moves point circularly around Alexander’s arm, Moving R foot at letter L, left foot following to letter G, execution is made with rigor.

Continued from Circle One

Tabula VII Circle Six

Zachary again cuts under the blade, and consequently makes an estocade in the same time and form as in Circle 4 above. Alexander forestalls him in another way, putting himself inside the angle while Zachary is cutting under, taking the straight line and thrusting through his head with rigor. 

Circle N. 7

Tabula VII Circle Seven Plan View


Subjects opponents blade at the second instance (Circle One).


Cuts under the blade, (As Alexander’s right foot lands) right foot to “V”, arm extended (curving estocade at face).


Lowering right foot on G, raising the L foot, (perceiving Zachary curved estocade) crossing blade on the outside, point raised hilt descending, while advancing left side turning on R foot, bracing arm against side.

Alternate from Circle One

Tabula VII Circle Seven

The cut under the blade and the estocade against Alexander’s face, outside the arm in a straight line, are made by Zachary as Alexander’s foot begins to fall to the ground. Alexander, having planted his foot and raised his point, moderates his course, and in diverting the opposing sword he subjects it on the outside, putting himself inside the angles.

Circle N. 8

Tabula VII Circle Eight Plan View


Raises left foot with a push against blade, brings point circularly down from above, moves shoulder a little back, strengthening arm against side, directs point under opponents right arm.


Continued from Circle Seven

Tabula VII Circle Eight

Alexander pursues his advantage with the help of a little push against the opposing sword, by which he raises his left foot, separates the sword and strikes Zachary below the arm.

Circle N. 9

Tabula VII Circle Nine Plan View


Intends to subject opponents blade at second instance. Raising his right foot, placing foible against forte. Right foot steeps towards letter “G”


Moves his body forward, Right foot close to letter “R”, estocade at an acute angle, arm straight against the lower part of Alexander’s body.


redirects right foot back, left following, toes pointed toward adversary, upper body bending as arm descends, point directed towards Zachary’s face.

Tabula VII Circle Nine

As Alexander attempts subjection, Zachary separates swords and attacks at an acute angle toward the belly, with hand raised a little. Alexander in response, draws back his foot, turning right side outwards, arm and hilt descending onto the opposing blade, left foot moving as measure requires.

Circle N. 10

Tabula VII Circle Ten Plan View


Blade under Alexander’s Outside quillon.


advancing Right foot to E, left foot following quickly, leaning forward wounding adversary in the face.


If Zachary’s blade is under the inside quillon, Alexander should step left.

Continuation of Circle Nine

Tabula VII Circle Ten

Alexander steps toward the opposing sword, and thrusts at Zachary’s face, making the execution by graduating and leaning his body forward with the arm stiff and extended.

Circle N. 11

Tabula VII Circle Eleven Plan View


Intends to subject opponents blade at second instance. Raising his right foot, placing foible against forte. Right foot steeps towards letter “G”


As Alexander foot is about to fall, enters to the inside, covering his face, raising his hilt, advancing his right foot past letter V making an estocade toward the lower part of Alexanders body.


Continues to follow Zachary’s sword, crossing it, turning outside quillon diagonally upward, proceed to circle Twelve.

Tabula VII Circle Eleven

As Alexander’s body begins to fall forward, Zachary makes an estocade at him at an acute angle toward the belly, covering his own face by interposing his hilt. In response Alexander, retreating and turning away again as in Circle Nine, proceeds to cross and subject the opposing blade by means of a forward leaning of the upper part of his body.

Circle N. 12

Tabula VII Circle Twelve Plan View


Raising his right foot, turning outside quillon from vertical outward, hilt clasping opposing blade, point against Zachary’s arm pit.


Continued from Circle Eleven

Tabula VII Circle Twelve

Alexander directs his point at the side of his adversary, turning his hand alone, and makes the execution by graduating the blades and entering to the inside with the right foot.

Circle N. 13

Tabula VII Circle Thirteen Plan View


Intends to subject opponents blade at second instance. Raising his right foot, placing foible against forte. Right foot steeps towards letter “G”


advancing right foot past letter “V”, making an estocade with stiff arm at an acute angle.


Turns away the right side of body turning of toes, while leaning forward, with stiff arm, directing a hit against Zachary’s Right shoulder… proceed to Circle Fourteen.


Alexander must attack at the beginning of Zachary’s movement, before Zachary has a chance to lean or advance, else defend per Circle Nine.

Tabula VII Circle Thriteen

Zachary attacks his adversary’s belly at an acute angle at the moment that his own sword is subjected. Alexander, turning on his toes and leaning forward, delivers a thrust in a straight line to the uncovered part of Zachary’s shoulder.

Circle N. 14

Tabula VII Circle Fourteen Plan View


Advancing left foot and side forward, turning on right foot, without approach brings arm down bending upper body, Hilt on blade pushing it down to the degree body enters, places left foot near M, followed by the right foot.


 Continued from Circle Eleven

Continued from Circle Eleven

Alexander, securing the opposing blade and holding it in subjection, performs the execution of his estocade, entering upon the enemy with the left side forward.