Master, which is not

Master, which is not

Some time ago on the Internet has an extensive discussion on the subject of the existence (or nonexistence) of a perfect historical fencing master named Peter Koza. Knowledgeable people have argued that such a person is not present, and the maestro Goat is the fruit of fantasy, fiction, impossible ideal of the maestro, which simply can not be in today’s world. Other experts argued that Peter Koza still there, living in Slovakia and, indeed, has incredible knowledge of Renaissance fencing. The dispute flared up, the number of arguments «for» and «against» growing …

Meanwhile, the real maestro Goat pestered the Russian consulate in Bratislava, trying to make a Russian visa In terms journalistic cliches, fencing public Petersburg «froze in anticipation.» And when, finally, the consulate issued the visa master of all of us, «a relief». Because now the unique workshop of the legendary master nothing could stop it.

…Peter Koza was born in 1946. At age 14 he started fencing in the sports society «Locomotive». Of the three sports weapons he chose the sword and saber. At this time in the club, which began attending Peter, taught master Josef Benedict is one of the last fencers inherited fighting and dueling tradition. Joseph Benedict served fencing masters back in the Austro-Hungarian army, and in 1960 he was already ’73. He was the first teacher of the little Peter Goats.

However, the maestro himself Goat is now recalls that he was not very impressed the style of the old master. At that time he sought a more modern, mobile fencing and archaic classic Joseph Benedict seemed to him too backward. However, the first steps in fencing were done under his leadership.

A few years later Goat, already possessing strong skills sport fencing, became interested in historical fencing. And since one can not be engaged in fencing, he fascinated his idea of ​​three more friends. This quartet and became the first school of Peter Goats, revealing at the same time historical fencing for Slovakia.

In its work, Goat immediately began using a scientific approach. This, however, was not easy. Comparing the past with the present times, the maestro still wonders availability of information in the modern world. For example, Now any student can repeatedly press the button and get unlimited use of almost any Renaissance treatise on fencing. In the second half of the sixties to work with the original of the department spetskhran needed to overcome a number of bureaucratic barriers. All the more so in the whole of Czechoslovakia most of these primary sources, there were not so many, and trips abroad were quite difficult.

Only when the goat got a job in the organization «Slavkontsert» he received several great opportunities associated with foreign travel.

Interestingly — despite the fact that in Slovakia, Peter Koza was the first master, refer to the history of fencing in the Czech Republic like the direction already existed. For example, during one of his trips to the Czech Republic met with the maestro of the club, who asked him to share his secrets. On closer inspection, it turned out that the Czechs Vechta, having no school at all. They only move hot interest and their own creative vision, based on a blend of historical films, theater and sports. Then this little Czech club became the first academic laboratory Goat. Looking ahead, it is worth mentioning that today many European clubs of historical fencing consider themselves followers of the teachings of The Goat and use his school certificates.

Later Peter Koza went quite a way the Master, doing science and art, ignoring the social revolutions and financial crises. He had a chance to explore a huge number of primary sources, each of which he had himself translated for further practical trials and inclusion in a unique, multi-faceted system

He was lucky to work. While most of the time in a creative environment, goat fights put on different types of weapons more than a hundred performances and participated in the creation of about forty films. And the two films («The Bridge at the gate goat» and «Constellation of the sword») were filmed in his own scenarios.

Today Peter Koza does not work in the film — the film industry in present-day Slovakia is not in the best condition. However, the maestro is almost no day is not sitting idle. For example, the possibility of negotiating a seminar in Russia, we have found in his schedule only one free weekend for the entire summer of 2013. The rest of the time he was busy with their own educational projects in Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Austria.

Thus, the workshop of Peter Goats in Russia automatically fell on 13 and 14 July.

At the airport, the maestro can easily be recognized by the impressive cases for weapons, which he brought with him his own minimum set of Travel: Two Renaissance rapier (Spanish and Italian), white shirt, an old breed and several reprints. This set he surprised not only the customs service but me. As any adult representative of the countries of the former socialist camp, he is pretty well speaks Russian. Although Slavic «svoizm.» So, coming up to the car, he immediately noticed that the swordsman must have a great car because «we all — shpagatery» (a mixture of fencers and the Musketeers).

As usually happens in such cases, we have prepared a special guest cultural program consisting of city tours and visits to museums weapons. The main museum for such a visit artillery. Maestro praised the exposition presented in the collection of weapons and armor, especially good feeling in the halls of the European Middle Ages. On the same day I asked maestro Goat on TV, in the program «Constellation d Artagnan», which is specifically devoted to fencing and fencers.

The workshop itself by tradition we have laid in two days. The first day was entirely devoted to the theory: familiarity with the group, the lecture and answered questions. And on this day the maestro Goat showed himself as an expert of the highest class. His erudition in the history of fencing has surpassed all expectations. Easy terms, and the names of the events, he connected with the history of fencing politics, religion, fashion, memory citing Italian, Spanish and French treatises, using appropriate national terminology. He showed, for example, as the First Council of Trent influenced the style of the engravings in the textbook Camillo Agrippa, and at the same time spoke about the fate of the artist who did the illustrations. Or, for example, goat explained why the center of fencing in Renaissance Italy was precisely Bologna rather than any other city.

The second day included two three-hour training session, with a break for lunch. And on this day Goat opened as a practitioner. For six hours, he was able to do much more than simply demonstrate the basic principles of Italian and Spanish Renaissance fencing. Enriching their lessons with quotations from the most important treatises, using the detailed terms, he identified the most typical, recognizable action from schools morozzo, Agrippa, Fabrice, Zhiganti, kappa-Ferro, Thibault, Alfieri … He demonstrated the fundamental difference between these schools, just to keep track of Typical details of the handwriting and other artists.

Of course, many of the students could already identify the main schools of the Renaissance from the pictures, but truly feel their specificity for yourself it was only at this seminar. The more that training Goat built in chronological order of appearance of these schools in the textbooks, allowing finally clarify the technical trends in the development of the Renaissance rapier up to its gradual transformation into a French Floret.

In conclusion, Maestro Cosa gave all participants a small bonus, taking just a short rope he easily spent several techniques against swords, adding that they belong to the old ways of self-defense sailors.

In the evening we have organized in honor of the maestro’s gala dinner, and then took him to the hotel. On the way goat looked at his watch and said with satisfaction: «Well, it’s not too late. In my room I’d have a little more work! «.

I was surprised. What is going to deal with this incredible man after such a hard day? Anticipating my question, the maestro said, «I just now translate a treatise by Giacomo di Grassi.»

We saw off Peter Koza in the airport the next day after our seminar. Immediately after returning home, he was preparing to fly to Germany, where he was waiting for trained team.

But our communication with the master is not over! At the end of September this year exclusively for the Russian team Peter Koza will hold a special five-day seminar. At this time in the form of a retrospective, and in-depth, including a serious study of the theory and practice, with the subsequent issuance of a unique certificate. And it will be dedicated to Italian fencing schools of the Renaissance.

And wishing to participate can learn all the details and to join, by writing to

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