The year 2018 was a great one for the Cateran Society and the Broadsword Academy Germany. Our numbers are growing constantly and we have many dedicated groups and members, participants in the Online Apprenticeship Program and good contacts to many HEMA groups worldwide. The Cateran Society can be proud to have Caterans, Mentors and apprentices all over the world, in Canada, USA, Russia, Indonesia, Finland, Ireland, Malta, Germany and more, all dedicated to training and research. So it is no wonder, that with the constant progress we were able to certify a lot of new mentors and Caterans this year. Another amazing thing was two members of our program participating in the TV show “Forged in Fire – Knife or Death”, a sword cutting test show. Kenneth Tucker´s episode 5 of season 2 already aired on October 31, while Joshua Campbell will be seen in Season3. You can see Ken´s performance here. Congratulations again to all of you.
In the field of research the biggest achievement was publishing the book „Scorners of Death“, which is dealing with arms, armor and combat methods of the medieval gaelic warriors in Scotland and Ireland. This co-authored project by Christopher Scott Thompson, Randall Gustits, the late Ken Pfrenger and me was published by Falling Rook Publishing in Scotland, thanks to Keith Farrell and his team, who did a great job. So the book is in the best hands and in its „homecountry“ 🙂 More informations here. Additionally I was proud to see my article on the History and Use of the Military Sabre fully published in the german historical magazine Karfunkel Combat No. 14.
I would also like to thank Jay Maas, Cateran of the Broadsword Academy Manitoba and point out his hard and dedicated work. No one within the Cateran Society (and also outside) was so active in making full video interpretations of various Broadsword manuals and much more. He also makes it possible, that the first Cateran Society Broadsword Gathering will happen in Canada 2019.
Another amazing project was to create a training Broadsword prototype with Chris Adams of Balefire Blades. This was a new experience for us and it was awesome to exchange with Chris and work out the marvelous Angelo prototype, which will result in a final model soon.
The BAG was also very active in teaching and promoting our combat arts at various national and international seminars and workshops. 12 workshops and events in total, giving classes and seminars on various topics. We taught Highland Broadsword and Backhold Wrestling at the Krav Maga Crosscamp, Human Pankration Workshops and Ars Martialis Workshops in Hesse and Bavaria. We held a seminar with the Freifechter in Cologne on Sword and Targe and I participated again at the Noble Science Germany II hosted by Zornhau to teach Highland Wrestling. We also did a class on the Highland Charge at the Dog Brothers Woodscamp. We also invited over our friend and brother Mark De Fazio to widen our horizont and learning some Italian Knife Fighting.
An absolute highlight for me personally and as an instructor was of course the three days seminar on Highland Broadsword and Targe with Show of Arms on the beautifull island of Malta, which resulted in the founding of the Broadsword Academy Malta with three new mentors.
Another highlight was the International Montante Symposium hosted by Drey Wunder, where I held a lecture about the history and use of the scottish twohanded sword. The BAG also went to the German Blade Museum in Solingen to have a Sword-handling session with original Broadswords of different types, which was awesome. The International Sabre Symposium in Cologne was another highlight, although due to work I could not give my class on Backsword & Dagger, but several BAG members attended the event at least and had a great weekend.
I want to thank again all organisators, instructors and participants of these events, who I can call my friends and comrades with all my heart.
What more there is to say? I am very proud and happy to be the 2nd president of the Cateran Society, a non-profit association of dedicated enthusiasts worldwide. Even though many of us are far away from each other, we are united in our love for the Scottish Martial Heritage, history, traditions, swordsmanship and fighting. You are all doing a great job and I am looking forward to more seminars, workshops, books, articles, videos, mentors, caterans and hard working members 🙂
Merry Christmas, happy Holidays, good Jul and a happy New Year to all of you, your families and friends. Keep up your dedication and spirit!
Cheers from the Broadsword Academy Germany 🙂