Half Sword stance at Byzantine fresco of 1310 AD in Mystras (South Greece)


Scholae Palatinae

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By George E. Georgas, Fencing coach, Pammachon and Historical Fencing Instructor

Translation from Greek language Mr. Aggelos Pilidis.

 Many thanks to my teacher, Mr Kostas Dervenis for the photos of his trip to Mystras.

Screenshot 2016-08-19 01.45.22Mistras, the Byzantine castle-state of the Paleologos family near Sparta. It was built by Guillaume II de Villehardouin in 1249. After the battle of Pelagony, that took place in September 1259 between the Empire of Nicaea and the alliance of the Despotate of Epirus, the Principality of Achaea and the Kingdom of Sicily, it changed hands. As the Chronicle of the Morea describes, the Empire of Nicaea, led by the brother of emperor Michael VIII Palaiologos, Ioannes Palaiologos, and Alexios Strategopoulos, clashed with the allied armies of Michael II Komnenos, Duke of the Despotate of Epirus, Guillaume II de Villehardouin, leader of Achaea, Ioannes Duce of Thessaly and Manfred Hohenstaufen of Sicily.

The alliance was made…

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