Insights from Historical Artwork

Images of Fencing, Fighting, and War from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance

Other than the tremendous illustrations of fighting techniques in the historical fighting manuals, historical artwork from paintings, illuminations, embroideries and sculpture are among the most valuable resources for revealing important aspects of period fighting. The ARMA is pleased to present this first of its kind series of select representations of Medieval and Renaissance foot combat and warffare from a wide array of sources. The following pieces represent some of the most interesting iconographic examples on the use of historical European arms and armor.  Medieval and Renaissance artwork is often highly stylized, figurative, and filled with contextual conventions often bewildering to modern viewers not schooled in its subtleties and symbolism. But while these samples range greatly in their quality and reliability, they offer fascinating insight into European martial skills from the 11th to 17th centuries.  Additional pieces will be continuously added. 

Note: all original scanned images have been marked as to identify
them as originating online at the ARMA

Art1
HolkhamPictureBibleearly13.JPG (103717 bytes)
Art2
Billings Crusades 1 jpg.jpg (18591 bytes)
Art3
Billings Crusades 2 jpg.jpg (22990 bytes)
Art4
Brueghel jpg.jpg (67833 bytes)
Art5
Plat Chronicles jpg.jpg (28131 bytes)
Art6

Art7

Art8


Art9


Art10


Art11


Art12


Art13 


Art14


Art15


Art16
Fechtschule2.JPG (69926 bytes)
Art17
Fechtschule1.JPG (67981 bytes)
Art18

Art19
art20.JPG (73673 bytes)
Art20
art21.JPG (132385 bytes)
Art21

deathofArthur2.JPG (48756 bytes)
Art22

batlle13thcen.JPG (111727 bytes)
Art23
fight2.JPG (32154 bytes)
Art24
fight1.JPG (32301 bytes)
Art25

Art26
finger.JPG (43850 bytes)
Art27

helm.JPG (65878 bytes)  
Art28  

sworddancer1589Arbeau.gif (16001 bytes)
Art29
7fechters.JPG (34606 bytes)

Art30
landesk.jpg (48293 bytes)
Art31

Art32
MaximillianColor.JPG (81586 bytes)
Art33

Art34

Art35

Art36

Art37
wpeB2.jpg (54421 bytes)
Art38
Fechtschulen4.JPG (113024 bytes)
Art39
mjb1copy.jpg (164418 bytes)
Art40
mjb2copy.JPG (144341 bytes)
Art41
mjb3copy.JPG (107028 bytes)
Art42
mjb4copy.JPG (137966 bytes)
Art43
mjb5copy.JPG (197389 bytes)
Art44
mjb6copy.JPG (141012 bytes)
Art45
BehourdTourneyFighting.jpg (41687 bytes)
Art46
PotiersFC14th copy.JPG (134232 bytes)
Art47
SiegeFrench14th copy.JPG (132936 bytes)
Art48
miningpanorama1400s.JPG (74720 bytes)
Art49
acrobatswords1400s.JPG (81846 bytes)
Art50

cardsbyES1400s.JPG (16752 bytes)
Art51

polaxe1.JPG (40020 bytes)
Art52
LeJeu.JPG (45690 bytes)
Art53
mid1300's.JPG (70396 bytes)
Art54
early1400's.JPG (34371 bytes)
Art55
fechtertraining.JPG (29655 bytes)
Art56
Valoistapestry1565ReTourna.JPG (59232 bytes)
Art57

Montfort1.JPG (46276 bytes)
Art58

mid1400s.JPG (79266 bytes)
Art59
Italianwallmid1300sCastleo.JPG (31591 bytes)
Art60
royaltyatPotiers1356.JPG (46328 bytes)
Art61
QueenMarysPsalterearly1300.JPG (58236 bytes)
Art62
VenetianfleetdefeatsEmprBarbarossaoffPunteSalvao140708byAretino.JPG (102951 bytes)
Art63
QueenMaryPsalterc1300.JPG (63200 bytes)
Art64
turksatrhodes.JPG (62110 bytes)
Art65
GermanFechterWeapons.JPG (68365 bytes)
Art66
at67.h1.jpg (13767 bytes)
Art67
Swedish14thcentury.jpg (137036 bytes)
Art68

Art69
15th century illumination from Le Grant's Livre de Bonnes Moeurs.JPG (30766 bytes)
Art70


Art71

Art72
card1.jpg (47506 bytes)
Art73
card2.jpg (50625 bytes)
Art74
card3.jpg (46985 bytes)
Art75

Art76
theuerdank6.jpg (162332 bytes)
Art77
triumphzug2.jpg (66657 bytes)
Art78
triumphzug3.jpg (45527 bytes)
Art79
swisschronic.jpg (63456 bytes)
Art80
masterofbanderoles.jpg (518139 bytes)
Art81

Art82
Wallhausen.JPG (48567 bytes)
Art83
1539.jpg (702345 bytes)
Art84
BidenFechtersArt.JPG (151798 bytes)
Art85
codex68.jpg (73039 bytes) ManesseCodex111.JPG (54150 bytes) codex62.jpg (56798 bytes) fairQ1615.jpg (27183 bytes) Cavacalbo.JPG (74732 bytes)
studentsandtwon1500.jpg (111598 bytes) English1600s.JPG (57061 bytes) french1500s.jpg (35209 bytes) 1575.jpg (71070 bytes) WhitsuntideCostwoldGames1636.JPG (13732 bytes)
TreeofBat_early1400s.JPG (233104 bytes) 1606copy.jpg (96073 bytes) German16thJPG.JPG (53644 bytes) bishop.jpg (84137 bytes) herc.jpg (192618 bytes)
early16th-5.jpg (50087 bytes) medfr17.jpg (88399 bytes) 1539art.jpg (154321 bytes) 14thcenDvG.JPG (123001 bytes) VenetianBravoescopy.JPG (189021 bytes)
gurl2url18.jpg (109113 bytes) medfrn10.jpg (72088 bytes) medfrn5.jpg (125857 bytes) medfrn4.jpg (108245 bytes) medfrn3.jpg (119271 bytes)
medfr12.jpg (87562 bytes) medfr13.jpg (159480 bytes) medfrn7.jpg (92334 bytes) medfrn.jpg (81329 bytes) medfrn2.jpg (158190 bytes)
         
         
         
         
         
         

 

 
 

Note: ARMA - The Association for Renaissance Martial Arts and the ARMA logo are federally registered trademarks, copyright 2001. All rights reserved. No use of the ARMA name or emblem is permitted without authorization. Reproduction of material from this site without written permission of the authors is strictly prohibited. HACA and The Historical Armed Combat Association copyright 1999 by John Clements. All rights reserved. Contents of this site 1999 by ARMA.

 

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