New Book: Lessons of the Broadsword Masters

“Lessons of the Broadsword Masters”

by Christopher Scott Thompson


$25 Paperback from Lulu:


$4.99 E-Book from Kindle Direct Publishing:


The most comprehensive book ever written on the art of fencing with the basket-hilted Highland broadsword, including every major technique and concept from broadsword and backsword masters Donald McBane (1728), Thomas Page (1746), Andrew Lonnergan (1771), Captain G. Sinclair (1790), Archibald MacGregor (1791), Henry Angelo (1799), John Taylor (1804), and Thomas Mathewson (1805).




  • Fundamental Skills
  • Plain Playing
  • Timing
  • Slipping the Leg
  • Slipping the Body
  • Double Attacks
  • The Feint
  • The Invitation
  • Actions on the Blade
  • Disarms
  • Counter-Disarms
  • Set Play
  • Loose Play
  • The Grounds of the Sword
  • Traversing Footwork
  • Double Weapons (sword and targe, sword and buckler, sword and dagger, etc.)
  • The style of the stage gladiators
  • The style of the Highland Regiments
  • The training curriculum of the Cateran Society
  • The history of broadsword and backsword fencing
  • Nearly 500 separate training exercises


Christopher Scott Thompson is the founder of the Cateran Society and the author of several books on the Highland broadsword and related topics, including Highland Broadsword from Paladin Press and the self-published Broadsword Academy and Lannaireachd: Gaelic Swordsmanship.


Lannaireachd was an early attempt to interpret the Highland broadsword style for modern historical fencers, and it contains inaccuracies and errors of interpretation. Despite its limitations, it did feature beautiful illustrations by Bob Giordano that Paladin Press chose not to include when they published Highland Broadsword. When Highland Broadsword was first published by Paladin, the state of research into the historical art of broadsword fencing was much less advanced than it is today. As a result, the book focused almost exclusively on the methods of Henry Angelo and neglected the wealth of information available from other sources. Broadsword Academy was meant to address this deficiency. However, Broadsword Academy did not include clear and complete instruction on the basics because that information was already included in Highland Broadsword. When Paladin Press went out of business in 2017, the copyright for Highland Broadsword reverted to the author, and it finally became possible to create a new book containing both basic instruction and complete, detailed information on the techniques of all eight broadsword masters studied by the Cateran Society.


This book contains text from all three works as well as Enclose and Command: How to Fight with Weapons. However, the material has been rearranged in a clear and logical order and expanded considerably to include nearly 500 training drills, as well as several of the Bob Giordano illustrations originally published in Lannaireachd. In addition, all text has been rewritten to use gender-neutral language. Extensive quotes from the manuals allow readers to directly compare the techniques of McBane, Page, Lonnergan, Sinclair, MacGregor, Angelo, Taylor, and Mathewson in chronological order, tracing the development of broadsword fencing over time.


Lessons of the Broadsword Masters is meant to be the most complete and useful reference work yet published on the use of the Highland broadsword, replacing all previous books by the author on the same topic. It will be useful for broadsword instructors, HEMA practitioners, and interested martial artists of all styles.


And Don’t Forget “Scorners of Death: Fighting Skills of the Medieval Gaelic Warrior”


$34.50 Paperback: