Joachim Meyer's "Rose" is one of those techniques that has generated some interest and controvery in the HEMA community. Jeff Tsay has worked on this and has presented it as a class at some of the bigger HEMA events. I attended his class on the topic at Fechtschule America in 2010. Stu Feil and I had some fun together going through it. Here is Jeff's interpretation of Meyer's Rose. The vids are from 2009, so I can't say whether he has updated any of it or not.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJaQsxr3 ... re=related
I have been going back over this lately and have come up with my own interpretation that is a little bit different than Jeff's. Here is what I've come up with and my reasoning behind it. Text from Meyer is paraphrased from Jeff Forgeng's translations from his book published by Palgrave. The numbers noted are the paragraph numbers from Meyer's original text.
To start with, Herr Meyer gives us a good clue when he says this in the dussack section:
2.9r: Some cuts receive their names from the shape they resemble in cutting, like the Rose Cut.
So, the Rose cut, and by implication the Rose motion, in some way actually traces the shape of a Rose. But what would have been the accepted shape of a Rose back then? I think it may have been the Rose used in Heraldry:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rose_(heraldry)
We'll come back to this idea at the end.
So let's look at Meyer's devices involving the Rose for further clues:Example 1 (1.40v.1): Meyer tells us that the Rose works best from middle guard, so from the right Mittelhut send your blade in a circle around his blade so that your blade comes almost back to your initial guard, from there swing the weak powerfully from outside over his arms at his head.
---This is the main example that I base my interpretation on, and is Meyer's initial explanation of the Rose. Nowhere does this device suggest that the motion happens from the bind. Paulus Hector Mair uses the Krumphau as one of his primary parries. He often swings the Krump over and onto the opponent's sword with the short edge and then immediately cuts through the face. To me, it looks like Meyer is doing something similar. From a right side Mittelhut, swing your blade around and below his blade in a circle than ends with the short edge on top of his blade in a classic Krump position, which just so happens to also be "almost" your original Mittelhut position, just as Meyer instructs. Then "swing the weak" or simply cut forward through his head. Example 2 (1.41r.2): from the bind in Langenort/Long Point, break through below with the Rose between you and him and cast the short edge in at his head on the other side.
---This one is even simpler. From the bind, quickly circle under his blade and up to the other side to strike down at his head with the short edge. The strike is the equivalent of a Scheilhau and is the same motion as the Krump mentioned above. So it is exactly the same as above, just ending with a short edge strike to his head rather than a short edge Krump across his blade. This movement ends up being very similar to sport fencing's "disengage."Example 3 (1.41r.3): This one is very similar to the first example: from the bind, break through below with the Rose, then wrench his sword sideways from the other side with the short edge, then, so that your hands cross over one another in the air, strike deep with the short edge over at his head.
---Now our "Krump" motion is a little more forceful so that we are sure the opponent's weapon is off-line before we flip our blade over to strike to his head, rather than cutting through the face as in Example 1.Example 4 (1.41r.4): As soon as you connect in the bind, step towards his left side and go up with crossed hands and cut with the long edge through the Rose sideways from below behind his arm at his head.
---So here we are actually stepping away from or out of the bind into a right Ochs or Hanging Guard with crossed hands. We know this because Meyer tells us to step to the opponent's left, or our right, and that the cut is delivered "sideways" and from behind his arm. We then cut in a looping clockwise motion to strike with an Underhau at his head. While this one isn't a disengaging motion like we saw above, it still is a circular motion going downard and then upward and ending in a high Underhau that is essentially the same position as a Krump to the right or a right Mittelhut. Example 5 (1.42r.2): Just before you would connect in the bind, push your pommel up and turn your blade up from below through the Rose, catching his stroke on your long edge as in Image N, upper right, pg. 117
---This is pretty much the same motion as the one immediately above, just from a little further out. We avoid the bind, step out with a Hanging Guard with crossed hands, then cut clockwise in a circle ending with catching his blade on our long edge near the schildt in a Hanger with uncrossed hands. The ending position is still "almost" a Mittelhut as Meyer initially recommended, just much higher! We can also check ourselves to make sure we are on the right track because Meyer provides an illustration of this ending position.
Here is what all this looks like on video. My videos aren't as polished as Jeff's, so please cut me a little slack in that regard! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PC0ufU28 ... AAAAAAAAAA
Herr Meyer tends to think and organize things conceptually. He often notes that techniques are performed on both sides, without bothering to describe both sides. So if we are on the right track with this interpretation of his "Rose", it should work just as well from the other side. And it does!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0sowFkeJ ... AAAAAAAAAA
Now, continuing to think conceptually, if the concept of the Rose with the Longsword should also apply to the Dussack. So if we are doing things correctly, we should be able to do them with the Dussack as well as with the Longsword. And we can!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ThEeMoC ... AAAAAAAAAA
Keith P. Myers
Lifetime Member HEMA Alliance
Affiliate: Bartitsu Society & Cateran Society
Friend: Meyer Frei Fechter Guild