Some of My Obsessions
Weekend Novelist

I have been writing since first grade, though never in cursive. I love reading historical fiction and no period captivates me more than the Wars of the Roses.

Backyard Daredevil

I first started riding about the age of eight or nine, and the dreams of knighthood began soon after. I have commissioned a suit of tournament armor for use in jousting competitions.

International Paintball Arms Dealer

Although I rarely find the time to play paintball anymore, my (masked) face still sometimes appears in magazine ads and on the side of the Tippmann trailer.

I currently wear a pair of tailored mail sleeves created by Nick Checksfield. Nick has been making and restoring mail since 1992. He is currently an educator at Windsor Castle but has worked in the past as a mail restorer at the Wallace Collection. Nick has also been seen as a mail subject expert in documentaries such as "Going Medieval" with Mike Loades. Nick has handled the originals in the Royal Armouries Collection at the Tower of London. They originals are constructed of 7mm riveted rings and have broad gussets ...

Whether judicial trial by combat, a chivalric duel, or a deed of arms, the pollaxe was the primary weapon of choice between armoured men. By the fifteen century, the sword and dagger were considered secondary weapons, only capable of causing harm to an opponent by exploiting the small gaps in his plate armour. The pollaxe was essentially an axe, hammer, and spear affixed atop a sturdy shaft about the height of its wielder. Near the beginning of the fifteenth century, an anonymous Milanese fencing master in service to Philip II "the Bold" ...

For a member of the knightly class in the fifteenth century, hunting was far more than a simple hobby or pleasurable pastime--it was the very essence of life. Gaston III, compte de Foix, wrote in his treatise Livre de Chasse, or Book of the Hunt:tout mon temps me suis delite par especial en trois choses, l'une est en armes, l'autre est en amours, et l'autre si est en chasce..., or in "all my time I am delighted in three things, the one is in arms, the other is in love, and the other is in hunting." He would only claim to be an expert in the last.

Prior to the 15th century, jousters met in an open field and could pass on the right or the left side. Riders and horses were prone to severe injury in the event of a collision. In 1429, at a joust in Arras, France, a rope was hung with cloth to separate the contestants. It was called the tilt or toile. It is likely that the tilt barrier originated in Italy as early jousts with a barrier were referred to as the Italian Course. It did not reach England until the 1430s. Eventually, the cloth barrier evolved into a sturdy wooden wall. Prior to the 15th century, jousters met in an ...

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