Fiore basic syllabus

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Need a book to help you learn the longsword? Guy's Longsword Book

The Armizare syllabus is divided into two parts, Basic and Advanced. The Basic syllabus has four levels, the Advanced has three. Each level is identified by a symbol, drawn from the School logo. By completion of these seven levels the student will be deeply competent in our core style of medieval knightly combat, be familiar with the other major styles, and able to follow their own interests to direct their own future development. You can download a reference pdf of the entire syllabus here: Armizare Syllabus (Note that all references are to the Getty MS unless stated otherwise.)

The longsword section of the basic Armizare syllabus is the most evolved of all the school's syllabi; it has been a work in progress for over twelve years. At its core lie two forms: the cutting drill and the syllabus form, and four pair drills, known as first, second, the exchange and the break. These pair drills represent the four most common variations on defence: against a cut, covering from right and left, against a thrust on the opposite side, and against a thrust from the mirror side. These have (usually) four steps to them: the attack, the initial defence (remedy), the attacker's counter (counter-remedy) and the defender's counter to the counter (counter-counter-remedy). These drills should be memorised in their basic form, as they become the foundation of the development of the student's skills. By doing all four drills as both defender and attacker, the student will cover defence from right and left, attacking from right and left, defence against cut and thrust, and attacking with cut and thrust. Using the standard variation multipliers, which include the four crossings drill, changing the starting guards, changing the counter-remedy etc., the student can find a rational way to recreate every play in the system, and connect that play in memory to one or other of the foundational drills.

A good place to start with your longsword training is Guy's free beginner's class, here:

Level One, Tower

Mechanics and Conditioning:

  • The basic guard position
  • Stick avoidance drill

Understanding of safe training, control, and School etiquette


  • Fiore footwork: 4 steps: accrescere, discrescere, passare, tornare; 3 turns: volta stabile, meza volta, tutta volta


The meaning of the terms remedy, counter-remedy and counter-counter-remedy

  • Fendente disarm (fourth master)
  • Sottano disarm (ninth master)


  • Five of The 12 guards: Tutta porta di ferro, posta di donna (both sides), posta longa, posta frontale, dente di zenghiaro
  • Two of the Seven * Blows: Fendente, Sottano

Level Two, Arrow

Mechanics and Conditioning

  • Guard position analysis with pressure

  • Volta stabile and pass with pressure

* The footwork combinations: 1) accressere fora di strada, passare alla traversa, 2) accressere, 3 passi, with tutta volta.
  • Able to competently warm up self



  • All of the Blows, including the Mezani, and the 5 Punte

Level Three, Heart

Mechanics and Conditioning

  • Grip grounding (edges and point, with sword)



  • Dagger versus dagger: masters 6 and 8


  • Using the Pell and Tyre

Level Four, Dividers

Mechanics and Conditioning

  • Perfect push-ups (shoulder stabilisation)
  • Perfect squats (hip, ankle, knee alignment)
  • Able to competently lead a class warm up



Additional Resources