Author Archives: Bartitsu Society

“Moving Pictures” of Savate and la Canne

If Bartitsu Club instructor Pierre Vigny had seen this film footage, he’d probably have shaken his head at much of it. At the turn of the 20th century, Vigny was among a minority of savate instructors advocating for a reformation … Continue reading

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The Bartitsu and Suffrajitsu Stories as Rendered by Teenagers

It’s satisfying to see the torches of interest in Bartitsu and Suffrajitsu being taken up by (much) younger enthusiasts. Here are three recent video documents on aspects of Edwardian-era antagonistics, by researcher/presenters who had yet to be born when the … Continue reading

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The Soft Art: Ju-Jitsu (The Sketch, March 22 1905)

Edwardian journalists, handicapped by the lack of standardised spelling of Japanese words in English, did the best they could via phonetics. “Tarro Myaki’s” name is properly rendered at Taro Miyake, and he was prominent among the second wave of Japanese … Continue reading

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E.W. Barton-Wright’s Bartitsu in the Sherlock Holmes Collection

Originally posted on the Bartitsu.org site on Saturday, 30th June 2012 On Thursday, June 28th, 2012 a wall display commemorating Bartitsu founder E.W. Barton-Wright was unveiled as part of the Sherlock Holmes Collection at Marylebone Library in London. The display consists of … Continue reading

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Self-Defence with a Cane (1928)

This short article from the Motherwell Times of July 27th, 1928 remarks upon a visit to London by Herbert Gordon Lang, who perpetuated and modified the Vigny method of stick fighting. Lang had originally learned the art from former Bartitsu … Continue reading

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“The King’s Man” Trailer Promises a Melange of Gentlemanly Mayhem

Delayed several times due to the pandemic, The King’s Man – a prequel to the popular Kingsman series – is currently set for release in December of 2021. As this trailer demonstrates, alongside copious sword, knife and gun-play, the suave … Continue reading

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“Charley Smiler” Suffrajitsu Footage Added to “No Man Shall Protect Us” Documentary

The “Suffrajitsu” scene from the recently rediscovered 1911 movie Charley Smiler Takes Up Ju-jitsu has been edited into the 2018 documentary No Man Shall Protect Us, which illuminates the role of the secret society of martial arts-trained female bodyguards who … Continue reading

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Academic Boxing 101 with Tommy Joe Moore

The prolific Tommy Joe Moore offers a concise lesson in basic academic boxing, in an aggregative style that represents the baseline of gentlemanly fisticuffs circa 1900. In combination with the destructive guards advocated by Edward Barton-Wright and Pierre Vigny, these … Continue reading

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More on the Bartitsu Club’s 1902 Exhibition at Oxford

Our 2017 article on the Bartitsu Club’s “grand tour” of exhibitions during early-mid 1902 included several detailed reports on the event staged at the Oxford Town Hall. One of those reports offered the intriguing detail that a Mr. Whittle, who … Continue reading

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American Jiu-Jitsu in the “Walled City”

The following passage is excerpted from “The Walled City: a Story of the Criminal Insane”, written by Edward Huntington Williams and originally published in 1913. It describes an apparently un-named, but at least partially codified system of self defence and … Continue reading

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