I think someone put it forward here, and if not I do it now:
Considering that the thrust with broader swords could often be more lethal, it might be a sound battlefield strategy to rather incapacitate an enemy with a cut than to kill him outright, since that would:
a. Cause more confusion in the enemie's lines.
b. Force the enemy to work in a different way since the ranks are disturbed by injuried soldiers.
c. If both parties agree to this custom, then both will live on to fight another day, but depending on the outcome of the battle, hopefully with the one party having less functionable resources to use. "Wear him out", in a sense...
d. Serious conflicts were common within cities
, within countries
and inbetween countries
and your local enemy would at the same time be your allied when faced with other more distant enemies, so killing him could for that reason be a bad strategy. Allegiances shifted back and forth and you could not always even trust your own men, since mercenaries were quite common in this period. It is a very messy situation, to say the least.
The first two is what I was taught in the military. It is better to injure someone which will take 3-4 people to handle thus draining the enemies resources than to outright kill your enemy, both in a short and long perspective. This could be good for for example, a civil war, since it would make the country stronger which certainly was an important consideration in the Renaissance.
The latter two would seem more likely for domestic disputes as Meyer might suggest. Consequently comparing to images of disputes with foreigners or "common" enemies (gemeine feinde) does not necessarily conflict with this notion. - To be honest, I am not sure quite how Meyer defines the "common enemy", but he appears to think that the thrust has been used against such, but not against the countrymen, and that it has to be taught again due to foreign influence.
It seems to correlate with the concept used for the Italian Bridge Wars during the Renaissance also.
Also, we are speaking specifically of some decades surrounding 1570 here and for specific parts of the world, so what happened 100-130 years earlier or 50 years later might not be as relevant. Then again it might.
Perhaps Fronsburger can shed some light on this? I also have a Dutch book on military law and practice in German from the period that I wish I had the time to read through.
Damn, and I wasn't going to post since I am too busy... Have to pull out the keyboard or something...