Longsword and Imagination Collide Unexpectedly

I’ve been studying 14th century German longsword for over a year now. It’s a wonderful martial art which has help me recover some (and make gains in other areas) of my physical prowess that’s rather fallen apart with middle age and parenthood.

Recently, I learned a new guard in which you hold the sword low and in front of you, pointed off to the side. This guard, in the German tradition, is called Schrankhut (the barrier guard). See some photos here of real longsword practitioners demonstrating the guard.

My quick sketch of Schrankhut

My quick sketch of Schrankhut

I giggled the first time I heard this, because I thought my instructor was saying Chranku.

Well, that doesn’t mean anything to anyone but me, but it’s not inconsequential.

20+ years ago, I painted the below picture. I devised a saber-toothed animal, but for grins, I put the sabers on the lower jaw.

Chranku. Here I was wondering what would happen if you took a saber-toothed tiger and put the saber on the lower jaw. Water color. High school. All rights reserved.

Chranku. Here I was wondering what would happen if you took a saber-toothed tiger and put the saber on the lower jaw. Water color. High school. All rights reserved.

I called the beast – you guessed it – the Chranku.

The fun part now is considering the similarities between the two.

They both have blades.
They both come from below.
They both look like they might not amount to much, but you really oughtn’t to mess with either.

It was fun to have the reminder of my artistic past. And this month with Art Every Day Month, maybe I can revisit drawing again…

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