The following is a list of
literature and films recommended by Master Carnighan. If you are a
fencer or are interested in learning, you will want to check this list
On Fencing - Aldo Nadi
Aldo Nadi was one of the
greatest competitive fencers of all time. His classic text on foil
fencing was recently republished and is now available in larger
bookstores. Perhaps the best part of this work is Nadi's account of an
actual duel he fought. A "must read" for fencers.
Foil - Charles Selberg
This superb treatise on
modern foil fencing was recently revised and republished by Spotted Dog
Press in 1993. Master Selberg is one of the best minds in fencing today
and is one of only a handful of Americans ever to have won a gold medal
in an international championship (the 1970 World Masters Team Foil
Championship). It is available through SAF for $23.95.
The Book of the Sword - Sir Richard Francis Burton
An excellent book covering
the evolution of the sword by one of history's most colorful
Electric Foil Fencing - Istvan Lukovich
A comprehensive discussion
and analysis of the electric foil aesthetic.
Manual of Chess - Dr. Emanuel Lasker
Lasker was perhaps the
greatest chessmaster ever to have played the game. His manual of chess
provides great insight into strategic thinking. A longtime friend of
Len's, Provost-at-Arms Harold Hayes, wrote an excellent essay some time
ago illustrating the similarities of fencing and chess in terms of
strategy. Mr. Hayes' essay is entitled, "Strategic Balance in Chess and
Fencing." It was originally published in American Fencing magazine in
A Book of Five Rings - Miyamoto Musashi
Musashi was the preeminent
swordsman of his time (all time?).
He also wrote one of the world's most intriguing works on strategy.
A Ridley Scott film based
on a true story of two officers in Napoleon's army that maintain a
personal feud for decades. If you are looking for a truly authentic
film that accurately depicts historic dueling, watch this film starring
Harvey Keitel, Keith Carradine and Tom Conti.
The Samurai Trilogy
This is a series of three
movies starring Toshiro Mifune as Miyamoto Musashi.
Stewart Granger, Janet
Leigh and Mel Ferrer star in this romantic classic set in
pre-revolutionary France. Unparalleled fencing sequences - the
climactic duel at the end between Granger and Ferrer lasts nearly 10
The Princess Bride
A wonderful tale of
adventure and romance, this film has something for the entire family
and great fencing to boot. This is such a popular movie that there
actually exists an extensive web site dedicated to it, including
graphics, sounds and the complete script!
Liam Neeson stars as the
legendary Scottish outlaw in this historical film of treachery and
revenge. Don't miss the climactic duel between villain Tim Roth and
Neeson. (Rated "R" for violence and adult situations).
Another "Scottish" movie,
this time about an immortal Scottish Highlander played by Frenchman
Christopher Lambert. Although the premise of the movie is absurd, its
still great fun. True Scotsman Sean Connery also appears, ironically as
an Egyptian posing as a Spaniard. (Rated "R" for extreme violence -
parents be warned)
A Tyrone Power classic
featuring some good fencing scenes. Suggested by Sam Senior.
The Selberg Instructional Videos
Fencing Master Charles
Selberg has produced an outstanding line of instructional fencing
videos covering all aspects of the sport. Topics include footwork,
defense and parry systems, methods of attack, and much, much more.
These videos are available through SAF. Call for details!
By the Sword
A tale of revenge and
redemption set in contemporary times. The story revolves around a
troubled Fencing Master, played by Eric Roberts, who must face his
father's nemesis (F. Murray Abraham). Suggested by Anders Hoh.
© 2012, Studio of American Fencing