## foil rule question

### foil rule question

Suppose we have:

Attack from A, counter attack from B.

Both land.
Simple: Point for A.

Now suppose that B makes the counter attack with opposition.  After
B finds A's blade, A disengages and hits.

As I understand it, I can't call the opposition a parry, nor can I say
A was not continuously threatening target nor has B broken distance.
So, as far as I can tell, A's attack is (technically) unbroken and
simple and it is point for A.

So, why am I uncomfortable with this?  Two reasons:

1) It seems odd that B can find A's blade (on the foible) yet still
not get the point.
2) I cannot find any exact wording to describe what is and is not a
parry.  I understand that it is "the defensive action made with the
blade to prevent the attack arriving."  I cannot find any rule
distinguishing a parry from an attack with opposition except perhaps
the implied exclusivity of offensive and defensive actions.

Anyone care to comment?  Am I just wrong?

thanks.

--

-- Mike Buckley

### foil rule question

Quote:
> Now suppose that B makes the counter attack with opposition.  After
> B finds A's blade, A disengages and hits.
> As I understand it, I can't call the opposition a parry, nor can I say
> A was not continuously threatening target nor has B broken distance.
> So, as far as I can tell, A's attack is (technically) unbroken and
> simple and it is point for A.

I disagree with your position that A's attack is simple.  I would call
it a compound attack - a feint of a straight thrust (during which B
finds the blade) followed by a disengage.

Given that, I would apply article 235:

If a compound attack is made and the opponent finds the blade during
one of the feints, he has the right to riposte.

Point for B.

--
Mark C. Orton
employed by (but not speaking for)
Pulse Communications, Inc.

### foil rule question

Quote:

> Suppose we have:
> Attack from A, counter attack from B.
> Both land.
> Simple: Point for A.
> Now suppose that B makes the counter attack with opposition.  After
> B finds A's blade, A disengages and hits.
> As I understand it, I can't call the opposition a parry, nor can I say
> A was not continuously threatening target nor has B broken distance.
> So, as far as I can tell, A's attack is (technically) unbroken and
> simple and it is point for A.
> So, why am I uncomfortable with this?  Two reasons:
> 1) It seems odd that B can find A's blade (on the foible) yet still
> not get the point.
> 2) I cannot find any exact wording to describe what is and is not a
> parry.  I understand that it is "the defensive action made with the
> blade to prevent the attack arriving."  I cannot find any rule
> distinguishing a parry from an attack with opposition except perhaps
> the implied exclusivity of offensive and defensive actions.

The rules are there, it is just that they are so darned hard to find,
sometimes.

Rule 10 includes: "The parry is the defensive action made with the weapon
to prevent the attack from arriving."

Rule 12 includes: ""The stop hit made with opposition (formerly called
the "time-hit"): A counter-attack made by closing the line in which the
opponent's attack will be completed."

Rule 235 states: "When a compound attack is made, if the opponent finds
the blade during one of the feints, he has the right to riposte."  (Rule
419 contains wording that is almost the same as 235.)

The reason the attack, if it arrives, has right of way over the opposition
is that the so-called "opposition" would not be an "opposition"  because
it failed to close the line.

Rules 235 and 419 give the touch against the attacker.

George Kolombatovich

### foil rule question

|> Now suppose that B makes the counter attack with opposition.  After
|> B finds A's blade, A disengages and hits.
|> As I understand it, I can't call the opposition a parry, nor can I say
|> A was not continuously threatening target nor has B broken distance.
|> So, as far as I can tell, A's attack is (technically) unbroken and
|> simple and it is point for A.

A counter-attack with opposition is a simple action, so it should
hit coincident with the finding of the blade.  A's disengage would be
after the touch, or at least clearly late.  If A was continuously
threatening target, he should be able to hit in the original line
without disengaging.  I'd be biased to calling it B's attack on
A's preparation.

Another possibility is that A's disengage is initiated before B finds
his blade, but there is some minor incidental blade contact that
happens during the disengage.  I'd say that the opposition failed --
attack from A (mal-pare' by B).

If A is disengaging after his blade is taken but before he is hit,
then it is possible that he is disengaging a prise-de-fer or parry
rather than a counter-attack, since there may be a fencing time between
the engagement and the touch.  Attack from A, parry-riposte from B,
redoublement from A.

It's also possible that B is trying to counter-attack with opposition
into a feint from A, but since you say that A's attack is simple, I
won't dwell on that possibility.

-- Morgan Burke

### foil rule question

Quote:
Mike Buckley writes:
>Now suppose that B makes the counter attack with opposition.  After

B finds A's blade, A disengages and hits.

As I understand it, I can't call the opposition a parry, nor can I say
A was not continuously threatening target nor has B broken distance.
So, as far as I can tell, A's attack is (technically) unbroken and
simple and it is point for A.<<

I'm not a rated director, but here's how I'd interpret it - If you think
that B successfully removes A's threat, then it's attack, riposte, remise
- point for B.  However, the rules state that mere contact between the
blades isn't sufficient to remove the threat (although the rules are
discussing a point in line at that point, I think they apply here as
well).  So if B fails to actually remove the threat, and A disengages
before B has a chance to remove the threat, then it's attack,
counter-attack - point for A.  Of course, you could consider that A's
attack contains a disengage... if B's counter attack lands before A's
disengage you could give the point to B on the grounds that it was stop
hit in time.

Quote:
>>So, why am I uncomfortable with this?  Two reasons:

1) It seems odd that B can find A's blade (on the foible) yet still
not get the point. <<

Mere contact between the blades isn't sufficient.

Quote:
>>2) I cannot find any exact wording to describe what is and is not a

parry.  I understand that it is "the defensive action made with the
blade to prevent the attack arriving."  I cannot find any rule
distinguishing a parry from an attack with opposition except perhaps
the implied exclusivity of offensive and defensive actions.<<

I've always considered contact between once fencer's forte and the
others's foible to be a parry, but that definition comes more from
technical training than from any description of it in the rules.

Chip Jarred

### foil rule question

Quote:

>> Suppose we have:
>> Attack from A, counter attack from B.
>> Both land.
>> Simple: Point for A.
>> Now suppose that B makes the counter attack with opposition.  After
>> B finds A's blade, A disengages and hits.
>> As I understand it, I can't call the opposition a parry, nor can I say
>> A was not continuously threatening target nor has B broken distance.
>> So, as far as I can tell, A's attack is (technically) unbroken and
>> simple and it is point for A.

>> So, why am I uncomfortable with this?  Two reasons:

>> 1) It seems odd that B can find A's blade (on the foible) yet still
>> not get the point.
>> 2) I cannot find any exact wording to describe what is and is not a
>> parry.  I understand that it is "the defensive action made with the
>> blade to prevent the attack arriving."  I cannot find any rule
>> distinguishing a parry from an attack with opposition except perhaps
>> the implied exclusivity of offensive and defensive actions.

>The rules are there, it is just that they are so darned hard to find,
>sometimes.

Actually, I am quite comfortable with the rules and I had already
examined all the references (see my online fencing rules*).  I had
simply been unable to fully resolve them.

I'm quite happy to be wrong in this.

My mistake (according to your interpretation) was in calling A's
attack simple.  By disengaging after having the blade found, A's
attack is compound, the first feint was found and B's counter attack
is now called a ripost.  I can handle this, it just forces a
re-adjustment in my thinking.  Especially re. 2) above.

What you are saying is that the counter attack with opposition should
be analyzed as a parry-ripost if the attacker subsequently continues
in another line but as a counter-attack if the attacker finishes in
the same line.

I know you have repeatedly said that actions are only analyzable with
reference to both fencers but this degree of relativity surprises me.
I.e. one can both be parrying (a defensive action) and
counter-attacking (an offensive action) simultaneously and the only way
to distinguish is after the fact.  I was uncomfortable calling an
extending arm a parry.  I'll adjust.  I am more comfortable with this
result, if less so with the terminology.

So to refine (and repeat) my question: what meaning (if any) does the
adjective "defensive" have in the description:

The parry is the defensive action made with the blade to
prevent the attack arriving.

I was uncomfortable calling a counter-attack a parry, but I'm happy to do
so if that is the case.

* online copy of sections 1-3 of the CFF Rules for Competition, 1991.
By www, http://csclub.uwaterloo.ca/u/mabuckle/fencing/rules/
by ftp: csclub.uwaterloo.ca:pub/u/mabuckle/fencing/rules/

--

-- Mike Buckley

### foil rule question

|> So to refine (and repeat) my question: what meaning (if any) does the
|> adjective "defensive" have in the description:
|>
|>           The parry is the defensive action made with the blade to
|>           prevent the attack arriving.

According to Article 10, "Defensive actions are the different parries."
How's that for circular?

More helpfully, a defensive action is anything that is intended to
avoid a touch (as opposed to make a touch).  For example, a stop-hit
doesn't avoid the touch, so it would be "offensive" even though it
is used in a defensive context.

And just to make things perfectly clear (not!), Article 12 implies that
a stop-hit with opposition could be called an "offensive/defensive action",
which I interpret to mean that it is both parry and stop-hit in one action.

-- Morgan Burke

### foil rule question

|> I prefer the term "counter-offensive" to "offensive/defensive."

"Offensive/defensive" is blessed (cursed?) by the FIE Rules of Competition.
The "defensive" part of "offensive/defensive" is intended to show that
there is a parry incorporated into the offensive action, rather than
simply an attempt to hit ahead in time.  "Counter-offensive" doesn't
express that, although it does express the timing of a stop-hit better
than "offensive" does.

-- Morgan Burke

### foil rule question

Quote:

>|> So to refine (and repeat) my question: what meaning (if any) does the
>|> adjective "defensive" have in the description:
>|>           The parry is the defensive action made with the blade to
>|>           prevent the attack arriving.

I would say that defense is that ensemble of movements whose purpose is not
to hit the opponent but rather to avoid or deflect his offensive actions.

Quote:
>According to Article 10, "Defensive actions are the different parries."
>How's that for circular?
>More helpfully, a defensive action is anything that is intended to
>avoid a touch (as opposed to make a touch).  For example, a stop-hit
>doesn't avoid the touch, so it would be "offensive" even though it
>is used in a defensive context.

I regard 'stop-hits' as "counter-offensive" actions, that is, thrusts/cuts
made against offensive actions.  Technically, a stop hit <<coup d'arret>> is a
type of counter-attack that arrives a period of fencing time or more before
the conclusion of the attack.

Quote:
>And just to make things perfectly clear (not!), Article 12 implies that
>a stop-hit with opposition could be called an "offensive/defensive action",
>which I interpret to mean that it is both parry and stop-hit in one action.

I prefer the term "counter-offensive" to "offensive/defensive."
Counter-offensive actions made with opposition <<les temps>> are of two
varieties:

A 'time-hit' <<temps d'opposition>> is cut or thrust made with
opposition into the opponent's attack.

An 'interception' <<temps d'interception>> is a cut or thrust made
athwart (how's that for a word?) the path of an opponent's disengagement,
thus obstructing/blocking/checking the completion of that opponent's
indirect offensive action.

Quote:
>-- Morgan Burke

I hope this is of some help.

David Glasser
fencing master %DFB:BLZ/LLZ Bonn  NFF:BSI/BF/NSKS Bergen

Department of Kinesiology, University of Wisconsin -- Madison