Tuesday, April 2, 2013

A to Z: Bout

The A to Z Challenge is posting every day in April except Sundays (we get those off for good behavior.) And since there are 26 days, that matches the 26 letters of the alphabet. On April 1, blog about something that begins with the letter “A.” April 2 is “B,” April 3 is “C,” and so on. This awesome challenge is hosted by founder Arlee Bird at Tossing It Out, Damyanti Biswas at Amlokiblogs, Alex J. Cavanaugh, Tina Downey at Life is Good, DL Hammons at Cruising Altitude 2.0, Jeremy Hawkins at Retro-Zombie, Shannon Lawrence at The Warrior Muse, Matthew MacNish at The QQQE, Konstanz Silverbow at No Thought 2 Small, Stephen Tremp at Breakthrough Blogs, Livia Peterson at Leave it to Livia, L. Diane Wolfe at Spunk on a Stick, and Nicole at The Madlab Post

My A to Z theme is fencing and swordplay, focusing mainly on fencing terminology, but with a few favorite movie fencing moments thrown into the mix too. Why: I love fencing and swordplay!

B is for Bout:  an assault at which the score is kept. Remember from yesterday's post that in fencing terms, an assault is friendly combat between two fencers. (not the definition we often think of with that word)

The following video is a sabre bout at the Olympics - 13 minutes long, so don't watch all of it, just get a taste of the fun!



Other cool B words for fencing:
  • Backsword: an archaic, edged, unpointed sword used in prizefighting; also singlestick.
  • Balestra: a forward hop or jump, typically followed by an attack such as a lunge or fleche.
  • Bayonet: a type of electrical connector for foil and sabre.
  • Beat: an attempt to knock the opponent's blade aside or out of line by using one's foible or middle against the opponent's foible.
  • Baudry point: a safety collar placed around a live epee point to prevent dangerous penetration.
  • Bind: an action in which the opponent's blade is forced into the diagonally opposite line.
  • Black Card: used to indicate the most serious offences in a fencing competition. The offending fencer is usually expelled from the event or tournament.
  • Broadsword: any sword intended for cutting instead of thrusting; sabre.
  • Broken Time: a sudden change in the tempo of one fencer's actions, used to fool the opponent into responding at the wrong time.
  • Button: the safety tip on the end of practice and sporting swords.


  • 20 comments:

    Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

    Didn't that girl in the last Olympics who lost and then sat down and refused to leave the area end up with a black card? That was really sad to watch.

    Al Diaz said...

    I had to go to YouTube to watch it there but I liked it. They are pretty fast!!

    mshatch said...

    yeah, I couldn't watch it on your blog :(

    I had no idea fencing was an Olympic sport!

    Julie Luek said...

    Fencing is such an elegant sport, isn't it.

    Tyrean Martinson said...

    Alex - yes, that was sad to watch, and that kind of behavior can definitely get a black card. The interesting thing about fencing is that black cards can be given to spectators too - if they are out of line in their behavior.

    Al - It is pretty fast. I'll see what I can do about that broken link - thanks for telling me.

    Marcy - Thanks for letting me know. And yes, it's in the summer Olympics, but usually isn't televised except at 2a.m.

    Julie - I think it's elegant. :) But I also know it can be sweaty and inelegant at times too . . . tomorrow I'll have a bit about that.

    Ruchira said...

    Very informative post. Fencing is something I don't know much about.Not too popular in my part of the world !

    Mel said...

    Ah those nifty reflexes (of which I'll never have)! It's a very poetic sport!

    Tyrean Martinson said...

    Ruchira - Glad you liked it!

    Mel - I hadn't thought of it as being poetic . . . even though I wrote a really horrible poem about fencing once. And you never know about your reflexes . . . .

    Natalie Aguirre said...

    Very interesting. Didn't realize there was so much terminology.

    Julie Flanders said...

    Very fun! When I watch I find myself wishing I could do this, but as clumsy as I am I can only imagine the mess I would get into if I tried LOL.

    Michelle said...

    Sometimes the videos freeze... I'll have to watch it on YouTube later.
    When I saw bout, I thought of the 'flu... LOL.
    More interesting words!

    Nick Wilford said...

    The bayonet is electrical? Hmm, for some reason I'm thinking of a cattle prod now. Interesting stuff!

    Dani said...

    Great video! Loving these terms!!

    L.G. Smith said...

    I'm taking notes of some of these terms you're tossing out. I've done some YouTube research of fencing, but it's great to have someone who has done it describe stuff. :))

    Mark Means said...

    Balestra!! I always -knew- there was a word for that little hop...now I feel vindicated! Thanks :)

    Adriana Dascalu said...

    love your selection of cool B-words!

    Tyrean Martinson said...

    Natalie - there's a great deal of terminology that doesn't get used when a fencer begins fencing. As each person progresses, it seems like more layers are added, so after a few years, it all makes more sense. However, after fencing a few years, I heard and argument between two fencing masters about right of way . . . and I didn't know everything they meant.

    Julie - you should try it anyway. I'm not gifted with athleticism, but I loved it!

    Michelle - The bout as a flu - funny. :)

    Nick - LOL :). It doesn't actually shock anyone. I may have to change my "e" post a bit to explain how the electrics work for competition fencing.

    Dani - THanks!

    L.G. - I'm glad it's interesting!!!

    Mark - yes! Although I learned the term first as my coach introduced it to a bunch of newbies (me included) and I was kind of disappointed that it was just a little hop. Balestra sounded like some kind of cool sword move.

    kmckendry said...

    Very cool theme! I took a fencing class in college, I wish I had kept it up!

    Claire Gillian said...

    Though not a fighter at heart, I took a fencing class in college and absolutely loved it!

    Ruby Wilbur said...

    I'm so excited to see a blog about fencing! I was a varsity fencer in college, but sadly no activity since. This makes me really miss it!